Question First time custom watercooling questions

So, me and my cousin decided we want to watercool his pc, mostly as a project more than anything else.
it has a 2700X (we dont plan to cool the gpu, for now since he might upgrade in the next few monthes)
Between me and him we probably built around 10 computers, some with an AIO and some with air cooling, but haven't even seen a custom loop. they're just not that common since they don't sell the parts here.

So, where we live, you cant really get any watercooling stuff, so we have to order it. but anything from amazon, the shipping is twice the product.
So were looking mostly at aliexpress or ebay, unless there are things that shouldnt be bought from aliexpress

which brings me to the first question, What are the things you can cheap out on to save a buck, and what arent?
from what i know, the blocks, and fittings are a no go, but tubes, reservoir and radiators are no problem if you get chinese ones.

As for pump, I've read that I shouldn't get anything but a D5. is it that much better than any other pump? can you get one off aliexpress and not worry it will die?
what other "reliable" pumps are out there?

I already know to not get my metals mixed, though I heard sometimes on radiators the fins are aluminum but the actual part that touches the water isn't so its fine, so if i find a good deal on a radiator that is aluminium, I'll post another question just to make sure.

As for fittings, for soft tubing I would need compression fittings right? no barbs or stuff like that? And do i need the fittings and tubes to have the exact same, inner, or outer diameter?

Thanks in advance for any info you share, since I wanna be as clean as i can be about this


Contributing Writer
Check out the watercooling sticky - it is a little old (I need to update it) but still applies for most things.

The D5 isn't the only pump you can get, the DDC (also manufactured by Laing and re-branded) is another good pump. There are others out there which are not Laing D5 or DDC models, but nearly all pumps are somehow compared to they are the benchmark pumps in the PC watercooling world.