Hi guys, I'm 8-Bit Builder. I've been doing this for about 10 years now and just starting up my newest build. I build cases in the an old pixelated style as you will see shortly :D.
I've been wanting to build a Metroid computer case for about 7 years now but plastic was always too expensive ($1 a cube) compared to .08 cents a cube of wood which is what all my previous PC mods are made out of. Once I found out how accessible 3D printers were, I jumped head first and picked up a Maker Select. After a few months of non-stop printing it dawned on me that I could make the Metroid computer case I've been thinking about for such a long time. Normally I spend about 200-250$ in wood/paint but 3D printing plastic is really cheap in comparison, about $80 in plastic. I'm also planning on having a really cool light sequence on the inside of the case to get the red effect of the in game Metroid. Being my first foray into a 3D printed computer I'm sure I'll run into issues but look forward to overcoming them. This will also be my first time with programmable LED's so it will be a learning experience on that front also! I'm going with an ASUS STRIX for the Aura Sync capabilities since this case is going to have a big focus on lighting. The more advanced lighting will be done with the Tinkerboard.
Expectations: A strong gaming pc 100s' of LEDs programmed inside for a light show 95% 3D printed
-Thermaltake Riing RGB Fans (120mm, 200mm, Cpu cooler) 1TB SSD
Asus Tinkerboard with a few hundred LEDs programmed in a cool light show
And heres some photos of my past work:
Airship from Final Fantasy
Link from Zelda
And a 3D model I've printed, Calcifer from Howl's Moving Castle
Ok on to the build! This is what I'm building (modeled in 123Design/Tinkercad): Metroid from ...Metroid!
The modeled case
My first idea of how the components will fit
I started printing and doing test pieces to make sure I had it down pretty good and to test strength of the frame. Needless to say, it holds a LOT of weight (I weigh 185lbs)
I've got the printer going in earnest on the final design now. The printer will be going non-stop for about 2-3 weeks to get all the pieces done. I'll be back soon though with photos of attaching sections together with glue and 3D pen welding!
If you have any questions or ideas, feel free to ask 😄
Thanks for the links, they are pretty awesome. I wasn't aware they were prociding stl models for 3d printing, thats cool! I'll see what I can use, and if anything, use the ideas of them to mod them to this cases theme at least.
This is how it looks starting. This is about 3 hours into a print of 1 of the 14 sections left
A little futther in the print, about 9 hours
Aaaaand heres the issue at about 12 hours in. The tube that guides the plastic let loose while I was away from home and just shot the plastic everywhere. Usually on 3D printing you can resume from where an error happened but due to the nature of this design, the pieces have to be complete in 1 shot. So this is about 12ish hours of progress loss and plastic loss 😞
Round 2 at trying the same print after I fixed the issue. Using my Fire light to keep it lit up at night for the timelapse I'm making.
ANNNND heres issue #2. This is hard to see, but at 46 hours in on this print WITH ONLY 2 HOURS LEFT!, I got a layer shift. A layer shift is usually because a belt slips or a cable got caught on something. In this case, the cable got caught on the section of the plastic as it was printing. It prevented the head of the printer to move to its correct position so it started printing to the left by about 4mm. i caught it after it happened in about 10 min. but it was too late. 46 hours loss and about 11$ of plastic loss ;_;. Since this happened, I don't print the sections more than 4 columns of cubes high (88.8mm), that way I don't take such a large hit of loss of time. Its not noticeable in this photo of the layer shift but i had to discard this piece.
These issues combined with my 2nd printer also running into problems (was down for 5 days while replacement parts came in), was a hit in my sails of progress, but I've been back on track in the last day or so and got them both running. About 7 days of non-stop printing should get the the top of the case complete. I'll be back in a day or two to update progress with the components being layed out inside the base, and will probably ask for opinions on what looks best. See you guys then!
But not for long! These are testing "legs" to hold up the motherboard. I'll make some beefier/sturdier ones soon, but I really do like the 45 degree angle of the STRIX 370-I toward where the window will be. Not often I get to do a motherboard at an angle like this
The bottom is for a 200mm fan, just using one of my placeholder fans atm to test with
This is neat, this is heat changing plastic. Its brown at room temperature but turns green as it warms up. In this photo, I drilled the holes a little bigger and the friction from the drill heated the end up to green as you can see
Lastly, a new issue. This is a partial clog in the nozzle where not enough plastic comes out. I cleaned the plug and had to toss this piece.