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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2007 1:56 pm 
Willamette
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I think the 10lbs limit was for me because i was flying together with my family. I don't travel often except for short 2-hour drives from Fort Myers to Miami.

Anyways lets just keep the computer light as possible so it doesn't break your arm when you carry it.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2007 2:33 pm 
Little Foot
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Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
beteks wrote:
Anyways lets just keep the computer light as possible so it doesn't break your arm when you carry it.


That's the Idea...Can't see me running to catch a flight dragging around a 40Lb brick!!! :oops: :lol:

CrazyBillyBob


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PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2008 6:02 pm 
Little Foot
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Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
What??? AN UPDATE??? How could that be?

I've been focusing on the HDD mounts lately. Because it's a portable rig I want good shock / Vibration protection. So I went looking for what was on the market what I found was not so great and over priced.... Off to the local ACE hardware where I found expanding rubber stoppers of just the right size, some Stainless 6-32 cap screws and stainless washers.
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So what are expanding rubber stoppers? well there these thick rubber washers with a lip on one end and a integrated brass nut in the other. When the stopper is put in a hole about the same size the screw with a washer is threaded in from the lipped side. The Screw puts longitudinal pressure on the stopper causing it to deform into the hole.

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I used screws that were long enough to go through the stopper and in to the HDD. With this setup there is no metal to metal contact between the HDD and the drive cage. This keeps the shocks received in travel from being transferred in the HDD and damaging it. As well as the vibrations created when the HDD is running from traveling to the drive cage reducing operating noise.

Ok, so the theory section is over. To construct the drive cage I just put a 90 degree bend in some 1/8" Aluminum. To get a sharp bend I used my moto-tool to cut about 1/2 the Aluminum from the bend point and used a little 18" bench brake, but you could use some angle iron and a vise.
One side of the cage is mounted to the motherboard tray with rivets (this was done because of a clearance issue under the PSU) The other side is held down with Stainless cap screws.

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I also went ahead and mounted the Motherboard, so I had to show you all how it looked in the case.

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OK, So I've also loaded the OS and played some BF2142 with too :)
I've got a good bit of "Dressing" to do yet but I couldn't leave it that close and not "TEST" it.

More to come!


Let me know what you think!
CrazyBillyBob



I'll be working on those broken linked pics shortly too!


Last edited by Crazybillybob on Mon Dec 08, 2008 9:03 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 5:57 pm 
Little Foot
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Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
A little FYI:

To give you some Ideas Of costs..
The Nexus DoubleTwin Hard Drive Vibration Absorber
runs $9.99+S/H


My setup runs ($0.39 X4) +($0.19X4)=$2.32


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 12:20 pm 
Little Foot
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Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
It seems that getting the Razer case done has made my modding bug perk up, so I'm back to the PacknPlay. I've been using this as my main Rig (It's really a bad Idea to start using your mod too early, then you never want to finish it! :)

I'm designing a motherboard cover in because the motherboard would be exposed when the pc is in use if I didn't, fingers, kitty's, and other conductive things could "fall" into making the pc's life very short with out it.

For the cover I broke out my sheet of 1/8" expanded PVC (sintra). I've got an area marked out that will be enough to cover the whole motherboard, PSU, and Hdd. I'll cut down to this sheet to make it easier to handle (it' a 4'x 4' mother sheet I'm starting with)
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From the smaller sheet I cut the Covers to fit around the parts like the CPU heat sink, the ram, and GPU. Then I glued on the side rails (pieces to mount to the case, and connect the two covers together).
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One of the benefits to using the PVC board is that the parts can be glue welded together using Pipe Glue.
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This makes a strong bond because it causes the PVC on each part to melt a little and fuse together.

Once the glue dried the parts looked like this.
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The one on the right covers the Motherboard and the one on the left covers the PSU, and HDD.
I must have test fitted these things like 10 times, and never got a pic of the covers in place. I'll take some this weekend when I'm back home.

This last weekend my wife and I took a little trip up into the Blue Ridge mountains of Western North Carolina (nice place if you've never been). On the trip we found a bunch of rocks (Quartz crystals, and other semi-precious gem stones). As we found them they gave me an idea...

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I took some of the Crystals, some LEDS, a few pieces of PVC board, and a hot glue gun...

And came up with a "Power Crystal" to run the PacknPlay (TSA is going to love this :) :shock: )
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Mind you I put this together in my Hotel room and took the pic with my cell (that's why there a little fuzzy) So it's not finished or mounted in the case yet...(what you don't travel with your dremel, and a hot glue gun?) So I hacked a Usb cable to test out the LEDS.

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I need to make up a circuit to make the green leds twinkle and/ or fade.. maybe add some UV Led's for the Glow in the dark effect... But I like the look.

That's it for this entry .... Next time I'll mount the Power Crystal, and get some pics of the cover in place.

Also what am I going to do with these ???
Image


Till then! Keep your stick on the ICE!

CrazyBillyBob


Last edited by Crazybillybob on Mon Dec 08, 2008 10:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 12:42 pm 
Monkey Federation (Top 10)*
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Whao. Kick ass. I didn't see this thread before.

I would give anything to be a fly on the wall when you tried to get that through security at the airport. lol


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2008 11:10 am 
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just be carful withthe quartz or you wont be able to close it!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 11:57 am 
Willamette
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I like your Idea with Crystals. :P


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 08, 2008 1:55 pm 
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Sorry if this is redundant, but it would be totally awesome if you modded a monitor to fit under the other side of the case, the side that you open up. It would sorta be like a big bulky laptop with desktop components inside.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2008 6:44 am 
Little Foot
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Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
The monitor will be included... I've gotten allot of work done on this before Showdown Lan (Sept 26-28 ), just need to get an update up here, it's coming... if work would slow down a bit!


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2008 1:42 pm 
Little Foot
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Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
Hi all,
It's been awhile, and boy have I been busy! I plowed trough allot to get the Pack-N-Play to a usable point for Showdown Lan ILL. 2008 (Sept. 26-28 )
So I think I'll break it up into multiple entries, just for ease of reading.
Where did we leave off... Oh yes the "Power Crystals". For the Crystals I wanted a throbbing
light effect, kind of like the warp core on that Trek show. So I did some research and bread boarded
up a circuit to test.
Image

The test looked something like this MP4 file
I liked the effect, but not the colors... I think I'll only use Blue, Green and Yellow.
So the next step was to create a PCB (Printed Circuit Board) , I normally don't like making double sided PCB
at home (very hard to solder without vias) but I did it this time.
Image
It took about 8-9 tries to get this but it looks ok so I stuffed it full of parts.
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That was 3 and 1/2 weeks, a half a dozen transistors, and 2 op amps ago.... And it still doesn't work :( So as you can guess you'll be seeing more of this Circuit
In future worklogs as I plan to remake the PCB.

I'm planing on having the power plug into one of the Covers, this way one plug will power both the PC, and the monitor.
(Power port will be in the upper right corner in this picture)
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As you can see here, there is very little clearance between the PSU and the Wall of the enclosure.
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So the Power plug into the PSU needs to be a low profile model, which no one makes. That's ok I'll mod one!

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I stared with a stock Power cable.

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Then Trimmed it down to size (utility knife works great on this rubberized plastic).

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The wires are reconnected using the crimp ends that are in the plug. It takes a little gentle prying with a small screw driver to open them up enough to get the old wires out and the new wires in, but it really wasn't hard.

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Now the bare wires are given a liberal coating of hot glue to protect everything (everyone) for getting zapped!

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The Jack came from an old machine (I don't remember for sure what it was, it's been in my junk box for years... An external tape drive maybe?) But it has a nice filter setup and mounts with 2 screws... perfect for this project!

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The finished Harness...an't it a beauty? (Bonus points for anyone that see's that there is no plug for the monitor in this pic...It took me a few hours to
Realize I forgot that part...It got spliced in up by the receptacle, but I forgot to snap a pic of that setup)

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Now everything gets test fitted into the enclosure... This Pc was test fitted and re-fitted three dozen times trough out the build
The most I've ever had to test, because everything is so close I had to make sure no two things got in the way of one another.

Image
Here's what things look like at this point. (The round hole in the bottom right is for the power switch)


In the next installment we'll cover what goes in Here!
Image


Please post Comments!!
CrazyBillyBob


Last edited by Crazybillybob on Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2008 2:39 pm 
Monkey Federation (Top 10)*
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Sextacular!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2008 9:13 am 
Little Foot
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Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
So, Many of you all have wanted to know what's going here:
Image

This will be the monitor’s new home!

So What I started with was a HP 15" LCD... I know it's not the largest monitor but it had to fit into the space I had. Plus I got a great deal on this monitor! (thanks Z)
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Front
Image
Back

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The Base of the Monitor is held on by 4 screws, which should give me a nice way to mount the monitor into the case

Before I can mount the monitor I want to layout the cover for the monitor (this odd order will make more sense here in a minute... I promise).

So I start with a raw Sheet of PVC, and cut it down to correct size for the top of the case.
Image

With those nice square corners finding the center is easy. Then I got to use my High School Geometry for the first time (ever out side of school :) ) To layout the
monitor mounting holes.
Image

After rounding the Corner and drilling the mounting holes, the monitor was test fitted to the cover, and one of my supervisors stopped by to inspect my work. Luckily she approved of it. :)
Image

Ok, I forgot to take a few pics here, builders focus. What I did was use the cover as a template to mark the holes onto the inside of the case, So that the monitor was perfectly centered. Then the center of the cover was cut out; as you'll notice in the next pic.

Once the holes were drilled in the case and the cover center was cut out. A way to still use the adjustment buttons on the monitor was needed... So The buttons Locations were transferred to the cover and holes were drilled to receive some custom buttons.
Image

For the custom monitor buttons I used some of the Diamond cutouts from the HDD fan guard on the bottom cover as well as some rectangular shafts, these were glued together so tat the button on the monitor is depressed when the Diamonds are pushed in.
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Once the Buttons were mounted it was time for a test fit.
Image

Well that just about wraps up this installment.

Next time we’ll look at the Copper mesh vent covers and start the painting process.

Thanks for watching, and as always leave comments.
CrazyBillyBob


Last edited by Crazybillybob on Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 7:19 pm 
Little Foot
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Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2005 2:03 pm
Posts: 184
Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
Here we are, The monitor is test fitted, the bottom cover is test fitted.
Image

The $100,000,000 question at this point is will that massive CPU heat sink let the case close with the monitor in there......

The Answer is coming. But first ;)

I want to dress up some of the vents in the cover with a custom grill. So I started with some copper mesh.
Image

Two methods were used. For the PSU vent the copper mesh was pressed into the vent opening with the piece of PVC that was removed from the opening.
This created an embossed cover (top one in photo). The second is a box form (imagine folding a 5 sided cube out of mesh) it will fit into the top of the blower fan in the back of the case. (Bottom in Photo)
Image

Next you guessed Test fitting!
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So everything fits.... Not quite That mondo CPU cooler is in the way :( so a quick trip to newegg brings this.
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It's a Dynatron 1U server CPU cooler. It's review said it was a little loud (50dB) so I ordered an extra 70mm quite fan just in case. But it really wasn't needed.
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This diminutive little cooler, lets the case close and keep the CPU nice and cool.... Perfect for this project :banana:

Now that the Case closes, the covers are removed and prepped for paint.
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Everything was giving 5-6 nice smooth coats of white primer.
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The final base color choice was left up to my wife (the choice was between matte black and silver metallic) the end choice was silver metallic. Everything got several coats of the silver metallic paint (lost count).
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Now fast forward 48 hours the paint is dry, the covers are reinstalled and here we are.
Image

That's where I'm at right now... I've got a few issues mainly the GPU that's hanging out in the middle of everything, and I'm planning on using the copper mesh to cover the square hole above CPU and over the ram.

This is the CPU and Ram area I'm talking about.
Image

What do you guys think?

I'm not really sure what to do with the GPU.... I could make a copper mesh cage around it, the big thing is that it needs allot of air to keep cool while gaming (or folding)
So a solid plastic a cover is pretty much out.... Ideas?

Here's a close up of the exposed Gpu.
Image


I'm really looking for thoughts, Ideas, and comments on the covers, I really like the clean look and would like to make it carry trough in those last few areas.


Till next time!

CrazyBillyBob


Last edited by Crazybillybob on Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2008 12:14 pm 
Little Foot
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Posts: 184
Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
My original plan was to have the bottom on solid piece. This proved to be impractical due to the height of the Video card Vs the CPU.

I have made a change in the setup. I'm planning on upgrading the Video card soon to a larger model (11" long) To increase the cooling and make things fit better I'm planning on installing on of these
Image
Flexible PCI-e extenders. This will let me lay the Video card on it's side, that way I can make a PVC shield with Vents around it. Should solve the cooling and Stealthing issues I've got.



I've also got to check into where all the pic links went.... Might be time for a new Web Host!



CrazyBillyBob


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 1:20 pm 
Little Foot
Little Foot

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2005 2:03 pm
Posts: 184
Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
I've gotten a new webhost, So the pics should be back up and working. If you spot one missing or a broken link let me know and I'll get it fixed.

New Update soon!

CrazyBillyBob


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2009 10:12 pm 
Little Foot
Little Foot

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2005 2:03 pm
Posts: 184
Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
Happy New Year,

You all thought I was gone :)

Nope just busy. See my Wife bought me this nice gift for Christmas, and I had to work it into this build.

Image

That's right Kiddos 4Gb more Ram and an ATI 4870X2....

The only way to mount this bad boy is on it's side. For that to happen I need to create a frame to support this 2 1/4 pound monster. So a quick trip to the big box lumber store for some Aluminum L bar.

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Fast forward through the measuring, cutting, drilling and filing to the first test fit.

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The mounting point from the Frame to the Back corner of the case gave me the most trouble....but with a bit of thinking I came up with this:

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Here's the finished Frame without the card.

Image

So what do you think? nice, OK, not bad?

Oh your wanting to see the finished product?

OK :)
Here's the card mounted in the case....
Image

To be honest this card has been a distraction... I've been playing a bit too much COD W@W on it and not finished the cover... That's next on the list if I can put the mouse down long enough;)


(oh and that makes 8GB of Ram... all of it usable under XP x64 )


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 6:50 pm 
Little Foot
Little Foot

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2005 2:03 pm
Posts: 184
Location: In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away!
Hi all I'm still at it, had a few things come up over the last few months, I got most of them cleared up... So the Mod moves on!

So with the new Video card installed it was on to the new cover...

Instead of the two part cover that I had before, this time I'm going with a one piece. Still using the expanded PVC board that I used before.

Image

Here's the new cover with all the needed fan holes, ports, etc cut.

Image

Now everything is test fit to the cover (fans, ports, etc) and the cover is test fitted to the case.


Image

With the optical drive outside the case, the power and data cables make things look messy. So I combined them into a nice looking wire bundle.

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Last Fall at Showdown L.A.N. I saw a neat little device in the Antec booth. It is a device that fits into a 3 1/2" bay that allows remote control of some multimedia programs, as well as powering up the system. It's called Multimedia Station Basic it's designed for use in home theater pc's.
The list price of this model is $39.99 I've seen them at Best Buy for less, but was able to pick one up at Micro Center for $19.99 just before Christmas 2008. The unit contains the bay mounted receiver, a remote, a power harness interface, and a cd with the drivers / software.

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The bay mount is all well and good for HTPC, or your "normal" rigs around here, but for this one.... It's going in the parts bin.


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A few screws later and the board is free. The actual IR Receiver is the black square with 3 legs and a bump on the left side of the board. All the way to the left is an ultra bright blue power LED. The power switch ties into this board, then goes to the motherboard, the software interface is through a usb connection.


Image

To get the receiver to a high place to get the best signal I mounted it along side the monitor. To do this I made a custom mount for the unit. (note the black circle on the right side in it is a tiny drill hole, this is for the blue power LED... so it's not so bright that it blinds you when using the monitor).

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The stock bay mount had a mirror over the receiver hole, I pop it off and reused it on my mount to give it a nice clean look.


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Here's a look at the board mounted in place (from the back).


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Here it is again from the front, the paint needs touched up yet.
With that done, now it's back to the cover.

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The cover got a couple coats of primer, paint, and clear.

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Now the fan mesh is in place.


What do you think?
I'm thinking about painting some graphics on the cover to go along with the "Pack-n-Play" theme.... but I'm not sure what I should put on it... Ideas are requested :)

Next time we'll look at the cover installed and the remote repainted.

As always let me know what you think!!

CrazyBillyBob


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:22 am 
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Looking good. I love how you update right as we think "ok this guy isn't going to finish this mod"


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 9:34 am 
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lol, i wonder if they will let u take that on an airplane, it looks kinda like a bomb.


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