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Koeshi

Final questions before pulling the trigger

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I have all my parts picked out for my first custom loop, and just want to clarify a couple of details with more experienced people before purchasing.

 

The first is about test running the loop.  I know that it is recommended to run the loop for a while (even a day) without the system powered on in order to check for leaks, but I am unclear how that is supposed to be done exactly.  I don't believe that even with the pump drawing power from molex that it will work without the motherboard being turned on.  I have this from my PSU box that I feel is related:

 

 

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but I would like clarification.

 

Second question is regarding pump/res mounting.  If I want to mount the pump/res to a radiator that also has fans attached, is it simply a case of using the longer screws that the radiator comes with, or is there more to it than that?  I would like to avoid both puncturing the radiator and having too loose of an attachment.

 

Lastly, just to confirm, using de-ionised water plus biocide should be fine, right?  There is no need to use specifically distilled water.

 

I'll probably have more questions as things go on, but these are what is on my mind right now.

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18 minutes ago, Koeshi said:

I have all my parts picked out for my first custom loop, and just want to clarify a couple of details with more experienced people before purchasing.

 

The first is about test running the loop.  I know that it is recommended to run the loop for a while (even a day) without the system powered on in order to check for leaks, but I am unclear how that is supposed to be done exactly.  I don't believe that even with the pump drawing power from molex that it will work without the motherboard being turned on.  I have this from my PSU box that I feel is related:

  Hide contents

 

IMG_20201017_162822.thumb.jpg.cf7d966c0bf4234b80536ac9e574c07c.jpgspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.pngspacer.png

but I would like clarification.

 

Second question is regarding pump/res mounting.  If I want to mount the pump/res to a radiator that also has fans attached, is it simply a case of using the longer screws that the radiator comes with, or is there more to it than that?  I would like to avoid both puncturing the radiator and having too loose of an attachment.

 

Lastly, just to confirm, using de-ionised water plus biocide should be fine, right?  There is no need to use specifically distilled water.

 

I'll probably have more questions as things go on, but these are what is on my mind right now.

1 - some res/pumps com with a 4 pin molex connector to the psu, to jump start test it

 

2 - Attach it to the fan, not the reservoir, one side of the fan to the rad, the other to the res/pump

 

3 - Yes, but a proper clear coolant is recommended, even over distilled water, but its your choice, although over time some leaks could happen or algae could grow

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19 minutes ago, Koeshi said:

I know that it is recommended to run the loop for a while (even a day) without the system powered on in order to check for leaks, but I am unclear how that is supposed to be done exactly.

Yes, you can turn your PSU on. You don't need such a plug for this. An actual paper clip or piece of wire is all it takes - you just need to short the right pins. See this PDF from Silverstone. The ATX pinout is also documented on Wikipedia. You need to short PS_ON with ground. It will turn on and keep on as long as PS_ON is set to ground. I suggest turning it on and off either on the back of the PSU or with a switchable extension cord.

 

19 minutes ago, Koeshi said:

If I want to mount the pump/res to a radiator that also has fans attached, is it simply a case of using the longer screws that the radiator comes with, or is there more to it than that?

Can you be more specific? Do you want to mount the bracket to the fans attached to the radiator or on the other side directly to the radiator? Which bracket? Many (but not all!) radiators have some sort of protection from going to deep with screws. I would probably use the short screws that came with your radiator that were meant to mount it directly to the case. Should be close enough but if you want to be sure: measure them. If you want to put them on the fans mounted to the radiator I'd use the long screws meant for that. They are long enough to mount the whole construction with these to the case, so as long as the material on the bracket isn't too long, it will work. 

23 minutes ago, Koeshi said:

Lastly, just to confirm, using de-ionised water plus biocide should be fine, right?  There is no need to use specifically distilled water.

Use distilled water! The minerals and impurities in deionised water can quickly lead to corrosion or chemical issues - and it is still conductive from the get go (although distilled water will over time pick up ions and become conductive as well).


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Posted · Original PosterOP
1 hour ago, bowrilla said:

Yes, you can turn your PSU on. You don't need such a plug for this. An actual paper clip or piece of wire is all it takes - you just need to short the right pins. See this PDF from Silverstone. The ATX pinout is also documented on Wikipedia. You need to short PS_ON with ground. It will turn on and keep on as long as PS_ON is set to ground. I suggest turning it on and off either on the back of the PSU or with a switchable extension cord.

Okay, thanks, I think I understand that.  From what I see the connector that I have is just a pre-made way of shorting the pins.  Does that seem right?

 

1 hour ago, bowrilla said:

Can you be more specific? Do you want to mount the bracket to the fans attached to the radiator or on the other side directly to the radiator? Which bracket? Many (but not all!) radiators have some sort of protection from going to deep with screws. I would probably use the short screws that came with your radiator that were meant to mount it directly to the case. Should be close enough but if you want to be sure: measure them. If you want to put them on the fans mounted to the radiator I'd use the long screws meant for that. They are long enough to mount the whole construction with these to the case, so as long as the material on the bracket isn't too long, it will work. 

Sorry for not being clear enough, this is what in mind:

 

pump/res -> fans -> radiator -> case

 

parts are:

HEATKILLER 100 (and its fan mounting kit) -> EK VARDAR -> Alphacool NexXxoS ST30 -> case

 

I hope that is clearer, though my take away from what you said is try with the shorter ones first and then switch to the larger ones if needed.

 

2 hours ago, bowrilla said:

Use distilled water! The minerals and impurities in deionised water can quickly lead to corrosion or chemical issues - and it is still conductive from the get go (although distilled water will over time pick up ions and become conductive as well).

Okay, thanks.  I'll take a look and see what I can find.  I was going with deionised because of the price difference.

 

2 hours ago, Ankh tech tips said:

1 - some res/pumps com with a 4 pin molex connector to the psu, to jump start test it

 

2 - Attach it to the fan, not the reservoir, one side of the fan to the rad, the other to the res/pump

 

3 - Yes, but a proper clear coolant is recommended, even over distilled water, but its your choice, although over time some leaks could happen or algae could grow

Thanks for the feedback :)

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1 minute ago, Koeshi said:

Does that seem right?

yep. There's no need for it but if you have such a plug, use it. It's the safer fool proof way.

 

2 minutes ago, Koeshi said:

pump/res -> fans -> radiator -> case

 

parts are:

HEATKILLER 100 (and its fan mounting kit) -> EK VARDAR -> Alphacool NexXxoS ST30 -> case

 

I hope that is clearer, though my take away from what you said is try with the shorter ones first and then switch to the larger ones if needed.

I don't see how you could get away with short screws. You have to mount both the fans and the pump-res mount to the radiator. You need longer screws to go all the way through the fans into the mounting holes on the rad. Unless they packed more than 2 type of screws in the pack of the rads (don't think so but can obviously vouch for it) you go for the longer ones as long as the fans are of regular depth (25mm). The Alphacool rads have little protective ledges to prevent damaging the rad with your screws.

 

9 minutes ago, Koeshi said:

I was going with deionised because of the price difference.

Yeah, don't. The difference is what, 5 bucks? You'd risk damaging your components, which would be a lot more expensive. You could also go with a premix, but you should still use distilled water for the last one, two or three flushes of your system after cleaning. And you NEED to clean your parts, especially your radiators. There is a lot of residue in their, flux, some oxidized layers.

 

You will need some proper cleaning stuff to get it done right (more important when using dyes in your loop, and absolutely mandatory for opaque and effect fluids like Vue). Mayhem's Blitz part 1 works (but is expensive and hard to get), you can also (in Europe at least?) with Cillit Bang (and similar cleaners), vinegar can also work as long as it is not too diluted. Mayhem's Blitz part 1 is a phosphoric acid solution, so strong stuff. You could buy that stuff directly (probably, depending on local rules and laws?) but it is dangerous stuff and you should never handle these kind of things without a) proper protective gear (gloves and eye protection) and NEVER pour water into the acid, it's always the other way around. Mayhem's Blitz part 2 is an alkaline solution to neutralize the remaining acid. The household replacements for Mayhem's Blitz would be a white vinegar solution for part 1 and baking soda solution for part 2. There's a video made by Mayhem's that explains both routes. You can flush it all with tap water a few times after that and then you should one, two or maybe even three runs with distilled water to get all the minerals and salts brought in with the tap water out of the system - or skip the tap water flush and go straight for the distilled water.

 

If you go for the stronger stuff make very much to remove all drips on the paint coat. The stronger acids will strip the paint away given enough time to work and can stain it. The Cillit Bang or vinegar route will be enough though, just might take a little longer.

 

Again, you NEED to flush and clean your radiators from the production residues. The blocks are a lot easier. Disassemble them, clean them with water (it's usually enough), some chemicals can be used on some materials (but DO NOT use the acids on nickel plated copper - the nickel plating can be damaged). The plastics (especially acryllic) are again a different story: NEVER bring alcohol, acids or any form of aggressive cleaners in contact with your acryllic! You risk anything from shortened lifespan to plain and simple instant FUBAR. (see also this link to EK's own blog). Then put everything together. O ring grease is not necessary and will only introduce contamination into the loop that might pose an issue with coloured coolants.


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Posted · Original PosterOP
1 hour ago, bowrilla said:

Yeah, don't. The difference is what, 5 bucks? You'd risk damaging your components, which would be a lot more expensive. You could also go with a premix, but you should still use distilled water for the last one, two or three flushes of your system after cleaning. And you NEED to clean your parts, especially your radiators. There is a lot of residue in their, flux, some oxidized layers.

 

You will need some proper cleaning stuff to get it done right (more important when using dyes in your loop, and absolutely mandatory for opaque and effect fluids like Vue). Mayhem's Blitz part 1 works (but is expensive and hard to get), you can also (in Europe at least?) with Cillit Bang (and similar cleaners), vinegar can also work as long as it is not too diluted. Mayhem's Blitz part 1 is a phosphoric acid solution, so strong stuff. You could buy that stuff directly (probably, depending on local rules and laws?) but it is dangerous stuff and you should never handle these kind of things without a) proper protective gear (gloves and eye protection) and NEVER pour water into the acid, it's always the other way around. Mayhem's Blitz part 2 is an alkaline solution to neutralize the remaining acid. The household replacements for Mayhem's Blitz would be a white vinegar solution for part 1 and baking soda solution for part 2. There's a video made by Mayhem's that explains both routes. You can flush it all with tap water a few times after that and then you should one, two or maybe even three runs with distilled water to get all the minerals and salts brought in with the tap water out of the system - or skip the tap water flush and go straight for the distilled water.

 

If you go for the stronger stuff make very much to remove all drips on the paint coat. The stronger acids will strip the paint away given enough time to work and can stain it. The Cillit Bang or vinegar route will be enough though, just might take a little longer.

 

Again, you NEED to flush and clean your radiators from the production residues. The blocks are a lot easier. Disassemble them, clean them with water (it's usually enough), some chemicals can be used on some materials (but DO NOT use the acids on nickel plated copper - the nickel plating can be damaged). The plastics (especially acryllic) are again a different story: NEVER bring alcohol, acids or any form of aggressive cleaners in contact with your acryllic! You risk anything from shortened lifespan to plain and simple instant FUBAR. (see also this link to EK's own blog). Then put everything together. O ring grease is not necessary and will only introduce contamination into the loop that might pose an issue with coloured coolants.

Okay, thats a lot to take in on just cleaning.  I take it from the need to not expose nickel and acrylic to aggressive solvents, that the radiators should be filled up with vinegar/water by themselves (like in a bucket/tub) rather than assembling the loop and then flushing it out?  Also, is it necessary to clean out the blocks when they are brand new?

 

I apologise for all the basic questions, but I want to be very sure before I get started.

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29 minutes ago, Koeshi said:

Okay, thats a lot to take in on just cleaning.  I take it from the need to not expose nickel and acrylic to aggressive solvents, that the radiators should be filled up with vinegar/water by themselves (like in a bucket/tub) rather than assembling the loop and then flushing it out?  Also, is it necessary to clean out the blocks when they are brand new?

 

I apologise for all the basic questions, but I want to be very sure before I get started.

Yes, this is all preparation before assembly. You might get away without cleaning the blocks but I'd just do it. It's not a big deal and you will do it in a year anyways. There might be some oily, greasy residue on the metal parts from fabrication. 

 

The radiators absolutely need to be cleaned (especially when new) and the blocks are just good practice. Don't bath them, you fill them up, close them down (ideally you have some plugs for this), shake them, let them sit one way, shake them, turn them around, shake them, let them sit, shake them. Drain and repeat with fresh solution until the end product is not discoloured anymore. At the end you drain it all out and flush it all ideally with distilled water but you can use tap water for the initial flush. If you have used some proper acids you should use some alkaline solution after you drained the acids. You can get along with out that if you flush them thoroughly and often enough though. 

 

The stronger the chemicals the more quickly the job is done. The Mayhem's Blitz part 1 stuff takes only a few hours, the vinegar may take a day or more, the household cleaners depend on the concentration inside and probably sit in between. All of those are acidic and will get the job done. With the vinegar I'd probably aim for 10% at least, less works but takes longer again. The Mayhem's Blitz part 1 is up to 9% phosphoric acid. You could use stronger solutions but those are more potent and dangerous and harm can be done more quickly. Never leave it all in for too long. 

 

It's all actually not that complicated, you just have to keep in mind that certain chemicals don't mix well with some materials. Copper is the most robust here, nickel plated copper doesn't do well with a lot of acidic cleaners, POM/acetal is more robust than acrylic that REALLY doesn't like strong cleaners. The good news is: cleaning your blocks is very easy because you can use some manual force with something like a toothbrush. Warm water is usually enough for the bocks. Just dry them out and remove all water residue - that will get rid of basically all the minerals and limescale from the tap water. If you want to be REALLY sure to have no contamination, then just use distilled water, probably not necessary though.

 

 


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7 minutes ago, Koeshi said:

Thanks for all the info.  Parts have now been ordered :)

Here's hoping all goes well.

It all sounds more complicated than it actually is. Work thoroughly and accurately and all will be well. Just don't rush it.


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