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Old 23rd July, 2006, 12:07 PM
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Cutting heatsink?

Hi all,
I'm currently planning on silencing my NF4 heatsink. But all the heatsinks i've seen (apart from one exception that was about £40) would interfere with my GPU. So i've had a think about this and i've come up with a solution. I'm planning to cut and adapt the stock AMD heatsink that i got with my processor, or get it cut for me. Now, seeing as this heatsink is completely aluminium, i want to know what tool i should get to cut it with, and what material should it be made of?

Each fin on it is about 1mm wide and so is the gap between each fin. They're pretty easy to bend but i'm not sure how easy they will be to cut.

EDIT: Managed to remove fan and bracket.

One last thing, does anyone know how to make your own heatpipes as that could be pretty handy!

Thanks,
Scott.
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 12:43 PM
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Making custom heaps pipes would be very difficult because they are sealed air tight tubes with a slight amount of liquid in them i believe. Their heat conductive properties work because, they liquid vaporises moves toward the opposite end of the tube and then the liquid condenses which results in the heat energy absorbed near the source being given off. The idea of heatpipes is to get the heat as far away from the source as practically posisble and then as the liquid condenses have fins attached to the pipes resulting in the heat being emitted through the fins. Hope this helped without confusing you. :thumbs:

As for cutting a heatsink, diamond tipped dremel blade or angle grinder blade would make short work of it. Dremel is recommended because they are easier to use when only making small cuts. Grinders are more for making big holes without any intricate designs.
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 12:53 PM
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Please make sure you wear eye protection and secure your heatsink in a clamp.
Flying shards of metal are incredibly dangerous. I have worked with metal myself in a workshop and I thoroughly advise you take your time and always proceed slowly and with caution.
Seriously, you do no want bits of aluminium flying everywhere.
If your doing straight cuts then a normal junior hacksaw with some lubricant would do you far better than a dremel. Aluminiums fairly easy to cut with a saw.
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 01:10 PM
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So, a hacksaw with water as the lubricant? Also, drilling holes into the base, would a titanium brill bit be suitable?
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 01:43 PM
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No, not water. You buy this special grease (Names beyond me) which is thick, black gooey stuff. It helps the cutting.
If you tell someone at a hardware store what your trying to do, they should know what you mean.

Again, with drilling, lubricant is strongly advised!
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 01:54 PM
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Titanium drillbit should rip through aluminium with ease.
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 02:06 PM
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No doubt about it. But lubricant is really what you should use, it enables smoother, faster cutting.
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 02:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rondog
Titanium drillbit should rip through aluminium with ease.
95% of "so called" titanium drill bits are actually cheap bastard iron with a thin titanium plating. I was given a set someone bought off a TV ad when I started doing my first case mod a few years back, and after trying to get through the steel computer case for a few minutes, the tip of the bit had done nothing but make the panel too hot to touch, and cause the powder coat to smoke and burn.

Then I grabbed a reasonable grade steel bit, and it cut through the panel like a hot knife through butter.
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 03:24 PM
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An abrasive chop saw will cut it.
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Cutting heatsink?-cs1415.jpg  
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 04:56 PM
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I think i'll get a dremel, 285Kit multipro is only £29.99 including VAT at dremel-direct. As for lapping the heatsink, perhaps a polishing attachment. I was originally planning to widen the gap down the center of the heatsink since i could cut it to the width i would need for my graphics card, but now i am considering cutting half of the fins off, or making it low profile at the point where the graphics card is, and then having fins full size above or below the graphics card. What do you think would be most effective?
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 06:12 PM
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DREMMEL. I'm currently in the process of making a bunch of video tutorials on how to mod with great results. I'll be covering such things as blowholes, ramsinks, windows, wiremanagement, custom fabrication, etc. I'll be posting the entire series once I've got a dozen or so videos finished.
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Old 23rd July, 2006, 10:50 PM
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The black lube your after which is the best is called Rocol RTD this stuff is dear and comes in 500g just use so engine or diff oil from your car.
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Old 24th July, 2006, 09:31 AM
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That stuff you mention is what I used. It is really expensive, but you only ever use a tincy wincy amount!
However, yeah, oil should do the job. It just makes the cut so much better and so much easier.
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Old 24th July, 2006, 12:09 PM
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Scott,

Aluminum is pretty soft. I cut it all the time for other projects here at work. A hack saw will go right through it. Make sure you have the HS secure before cutting. The same thing goes for drilling. Just drill slow. A quick shot of lube will help from killing the bit. You do not need a special bit for aluminum. Just a decent one...
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Old 24th July, 2006, 12:37 PM
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Hear hear!




Actually, haven't I already basically said that? Meh.
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Old 24th July, 2006, 12:49 PM
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Yep...just seconding that from my own experience...
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Old 24th July, 2006, 08:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Samuknow
Scott,

Aluminum is pretty soft. I cut it all the time for other projects here at work. A hack saw will go right through it. Make sure you have the HS secure before cutting. The same thing goes for drilling. Just drill slow. A quick shot of lube will help from killing the bit. You do not need a special bit for aluminum. Just a decent one...
I differ on the drilling for aluminum it is better to drill fast.
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Old 24th July, 2006, 08:27 PM
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I use a HSS bit for aluminium. HSS means high speed steel, so use a high speed!

You would use slow speed bits when drilling with a pillar drill - this is because you're applying a lot more pressure to the bit, compared to a handheld drill.
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Old 24th July, 2006, 08:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BobRoss
I differ on the drilling for aluminum it is better to drill fast.

Depends on the bit and drilling as Danrok said...

we use a drill press here and I sometimes use the mill. Both use slow speed bits.

If you are drill ing in a vice wiht a hand held drill, then use HSS bits. Be careful as it may grab at the end and twist your wrist a bit...
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Old 24th July, 2006, 10:49 PM
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Use a medium speed drill, at a medium speed, at medium pressure, with a medium amount of oil, then you'll have all your bases covered, and a hacksaw works great but I wouldn't use a 32 tooth use a 28 to 18 tooth as the softer Alum, gets stuck in the finer teeth.
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