[SOLVED] Good Cases for Watercooling with Components Segregated from Intake/Exhaust

SirShanson

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Aug 18, 2007
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Hi everyone, I have a bit of a funny issue with my next PC build. My girlfriend has cats who shed super fine hair that managed to make it past the filter in my last PC and brick the motherboard. For my new PC I am planning to enclose the critical components as much as possible and watercool them with the intake/exhausts for the radiators segregated from the main chamber so that hair has a minimal chance of making it in.

The Tower 900 looks like an ideal solution to achieve this: https://uk.thermaltake.com/the-tower-900.html but it's obviously massive and ever so slightly taller than I would like to fit under a desk easily, so I wondered if there are any other options?

The desk will be custom built to fit the whole wall one side of the room so I could opt for a more standard case, enclose it in a cupboard and run the cooling tubes out the back to an external radiator using something like this: https://www.aquatuning.co.uk/water-cooling/kits-systems-and-aios/external-kits/22164/alphacool-eiswand-360-solo-black

Anyone have any tips, any other options case wise?
 

geofelt

Titan
Sounds excessive to me.
Any filter must be cleaned regularly.
Look for a case with a fine mesh filter grid that is easily removable and washable.
Plan on a positive pressure cooling setup.
That is where all of the intake is from one source and is filtered.
Do not go overboard on exhaust. A single 120mm rear exit fan is sufficient.
Any more, and you draw in unfiltered air from adjacent openings.

There are some filter sprays that help collect finer particles.
Here is an example, there may be some better ones out there if you look:
https://www.amazon.com/QwikProducts-PuraClean-Filter-Spray/dp/B0145I072I
 

Lutfij

Titan
Moderator
Why not just have a wall mounted PC, that way the cats fur don't come into contact with the system or at the very least you minimize the amount of hair drawn in by the case's fans. By wall mount, you could just have the PC up on the wall, on a shelf something that is above the reach of the cat.
 

geofelt

Titan
Sounds excessive to me.
Any filter must be cleaned regularly.
Look for a case with a fine mesh filter grid that is easily removable and washable.
Plan on a positive pressure cooling setup.
That is where all of the intake is from one source and is filtered.
Do not go overboard on exhaust. A single 120mm rear exit fan is sufficient.
Any more, and you draw in unfiltered air from adjacent openings.

There are some filter sprays that help collect finer particles.
Here is an example, there may be some better ones out there if you look:
https://www.amazon.com/QwikProducts-PuraClean-Filter-Spray/dp/B0145I072I
 

DSzymborski

Titan
Moderator
I've got four cats and I can definitely assure you that restricting airflow is not the solution, proper maintenance is. I mostly work from home and have half-a-dozen PCs running at any given time and I've never lost a component due to cat hair. Starving a PC of airflow in order to save a PC from...being starved of airflow is not a good strategy.

And it's definitely not that I'm successful at keeping cats away from PCs.

 

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
Just started giving the front of my HTPC a quick vacuum every few weeks. Mesh and a filter, seems to take care of it. Every few months I dismantle the front, pull out the filter and clean it of fine dust.

Cat doesn't spend a lot of time in the room with my gaming rig, so haven't really changed my schedule there. Clean it every 6 months or so and top off the coolant.
 

SirShanson

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Aug 18, 2007
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Thanks everyone, I've had cats in the past without issue the difference here is they are Turkish Angoras which shed a lot and whose hair is seemingly fine enough to get through the filter.

I'm not talking about a buildup of lots of hair in the machine but a single stray hair that potentially has caused a circuit. I may also be completely wrong and it's coincidence that my machine bricked.

Positive pressure and sprays for finer particles are a good idea but as people stated above if I add finer filters I potentially reduce airflow. Really I'm looking at other options with watercooling and minimal routes for hairs to reach that might exist through innovative case/desk design.

The chance can't be reduced to zero but if I can minimise it and get a cool looking system out of it I'll be happy.
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Ambassador
You still need airflow over the motherboard, and that will require fans and a source of outside air.

If you are unusually paranoid about this, why not try mineral oil immersion.

https://www.pugetsystems.com/mineral-oil-pc.php
Omg. I thought that idea was dead, buried and gone. I'm sure Op doesn't have a stray $10k just lying around. Lol.

Seriously, maintenance. Hair isn't conductive. Too dry. My dog shed, enough that even a weekly brushing was enough to fill a pillow. She'd walk through a sunbeam and you could see the hair flying off her like rats deserting a sinking ship. And her 'place' she claimed was 3 feet from my full tower sitting on the floor under the desk.

That meant positive pressure and weekly filter cleanings with a monthly deep clean.

The phrase 'where there's smoke there is fire' is completely wrong. All kinds of things can smoke without a flame. The more correct phrase would be 'where there is fire, there is smoke'. You got unlucky and the mobo bricked. Can't blame that on the cat hair, more correct would be blame the maintenance schedule, since it allowed any hair to build up, get inside fan hubs, freeze motors, allow the pc to burn up, get inside hdd motor housings, cause data glitches, get inside the psu and prevent protective triggers etc.
 

DSzymborski

Titan
Moderator
It's generally believed that hair is very slightly conductive. Like on the level of a fraction of a picosiemen. So nothing. If hair were significantly conductive, pretty much every PC would be in danger nonstop, to the degree that designs for PCs would have to be very different. As would literally every electronic component in the house. You'd actually have to operate PCs only in clean room lab conditions.
 

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