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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 30th January, 2002, 06:20 PM
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Submersion in mineral oil

Hey yall!
Random nonesense has just spurred me on to submerge my comp in mineral oil... I want it to look good too!
I'm willing to risk my system (IS everyone sure mineral oil is non-conductive?)
Ho thick is it? will i be able to use my existing watercooling pump to pump it round or will i have to find something more heavy duty?
Im thinking of just having a big old tub of it and a couple of fans underwater circulating it.. and obviously a air pump with a couple of airstones (lol)
So is everyone sure its non0conductive? if so im happy!
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Old 30th January, 2002, 07:40 PM
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As far as I know, it's non-conductive, but I have no proof to back this up. If you have a multimeter you can check it to be sure.

I would think you'd need a beefier pump. Mineral oil is thicker than water, so the pump would have to work harder. Perhaps a hydraulic pump from a junk yard?:-D

I don't know how well mineral oil disapates heat, so I don' know if a tub would work well. I was thinking of a double radiator setup when I was thinking about sumbersive cooling. Have your first tank where the PC sits submerged, and have a radiator off the side of that, where the oil gets pumped through. Have that radiator submerged in a tub of water, which gets pumped through a second radiator, and cooled with fans. Which, by theory, should work well at cooling. But I don't have anythign to test this with, yet.
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Old 30th January, 2002, 08:09 PM
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I've seen it done, some article I read on hardocp.com. He was also cooling the mineral oil.
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Old 30th January, 2002, 08:38 PM
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dave u have corrupted my idea!

its supposed to be in a FISH TANK! full of water an FISH! i WILL do it ! i swear
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Old 30th January, 2002, 11:34 PM
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I've found some fake fish! and scrounged an air pump and airstone..
Im off to pets@home tomorow in search of a suitable tank.. any idea how much a smallish one would be?
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Old 31st January, 2002, 01:02 AM
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Quote:
Random nonesense has just spurred me on to submerge my comp in mineral oil...
... as you do

[quoI'm willing to risk my system (IS everyone sure mineral oil is non-conductive?) [/quote]
I hate to say this, but it depends. What you need is the cheapest, nastiest, cr@ppest oil you can get - then you can guarantee it's mineral oil with no detergents, wetting agents, magnetic particles or whatever put in. DO NOT USE DUCKHAMS.

Now motor oil is really thick gloop, so get the lightest grade you can (as cheap, nasty mineral oil). Some fully synth oils are really light, but have conductive surface active agents to help them coat metal.

The best in that regard is actually Halford's 0W50 Motorcycle mineral oil, about £10 for 5L

Quote:
Ho thick is it? will i be able to use my existing watercooling pump to pump it round or will i have to find something more heavy duty?
You'll need something bigger. I'll look up the info tomorrow, but from memory it's about 15 times as viscous as water at room temperature for 0W50

Quote:
Im thinking of just having a big old tub of it and a couple of fans underwater circulating it.. and obviously a air pump with a couple of airstones (lol)
Use centrifugal pumps directly on to the chip. Forget axial fans - they can't do that sort of viscosity.

Quote:
So is everyone sure its non0conductive? if so im happy!
See above. ALWAYS use a multimeter to check - some metal particles still are present from the refinery...
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Old 31st January, 2002, 02:22 AM
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OK, the only real reason to submerge in oil is to control condesation from extreme cooling. if your not gonna run a pelt or refridgeration on iy, theres really no need to keep the air off of it, and thats the pourpose of the oil....
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Old 31st January, 2002, 08:06 AM
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There is only one way to fix that SurlyJoe. Try a 220 watt water cooled peltier. It seems very scarry but you can submerge the power supply for the peltier and the computer in the mineral oil. Fans are the only thing that probably wouldn't be good in mineral oil. You could try some fans but it will put a lot of stress on them since they are made to push air.
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Old 31st January, 2002, 10:00 AM
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hmmm... Im doing it mainly for the coolness factor, im not too fussed about overclocking it..
Can anyone think of any other chemicals which woulld be more suitable? i can get hold of most stuff.
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Old 31st January, 2002, 11:21 AM
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Ah just use veggie oil... get it hot enough and you can deep fry!

.."Would you like frys with that?"
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Old 1st February, 2002, 07:39 PM
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Cool idea Dave,

I have been thinking of doing the same thing. I know they have done this for years with some supercomputer circuits and I was looking for a silicone based oil or a fluorocarbon fluid to use instead of mineral oil.

Standard case fans won't work in oil. You need a little recirculating pump and direct the flow right over hot spots like the CPU, GPU, etc. I have an old lab recirculating chiller that I might use to keep the fluid nice and chilly.

Good luck, :-D
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Old 1st February, 2002, 08:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by RoboTech
Cool idea Dave,

I have been thinking of doing the same thing. I know they have done this for years with some supercomputer circuits and I was looking for a silicone based oil or a fluorocarbon fluid to use instead of mineral oil.

Standard case fans won't work in oil. You need a little recirculating pump and direct the flow right over hot spots like the CPU, GPU, etc. I have an old lab recirculating chiller that I might use to keep the fluid nice and chilly.

Good luck, :-D
Are you sure you'd want to use a fluorocarbon fluid? I've heard they can eat a mobo.
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Old 1st February, 2002, 09:55 PM
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You can get pure silicone oil... a runnier version of the stuff they put in breast implants. It's pretty inert stuff, but has impressive surface-wetting characteristics, reasonably good heat properties, is stable at temperature and is absolutely not hygroscopic. Problem is that if you need to ask how much it costs, you probably can't afford it.

Flourocarbons and cfcs are not suitable to this application. They're designed for pressurised cooling circuits eg fridges and aircon units, and for cryogenic applications. Just as a liquid in a tank, they're highly volatile, rather toxic and not really that good for the environment either...
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Old 1st February, 2002, 10:46 PM
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Doh... Im on a pretty low budget too.. thinking of spending about 20quid max on whatever fluid its gunna be.... I can get stuff at cost from a chemicals place tho?
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Old 7th February, 2002, 07:08 PM
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Hi guys
best advice i can give id don't bother !
Tryed out several oils including transformer oils and they all have strange effects .One type i think it was called diala was absorbed by the rubber o rings inside my pump and blew the pump apart!!!
Anyway the heat transfer properties are rubish i had the m/b submerged in oil at - 30 .The pump discharged straight onto the cpu die and i could only get it down to -2???and i even tryed it with a heat sink to increase the surface area.One other point they absorbe WATER so it would have to be sealed or it would become leathel to the system in a matter of day's.
Hope this helps
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Old 7th February, 2002, 08:34 PM
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Welcome, fasterstill! Honestly, submersion sounds like a pure PITA. What I read in this thread leads me to believe that going beyond H20 or a Vapochill-like setup is gilding the lilly. Worse, it appears to work less well.
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Old 8th February, 2002, 12:14 AM
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aaaw... more complicated than i thought at first. ah well, another time maybe.
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Old 12th February, 2002, 02:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dave
hmmm... Im doing it mainly for the coolness factor, im not too fussed about overclocking it..
Can anyone think of any other chemicals which woulld be more suitable? i can get hold of most stuff.
glyserol (sp)
Its with out a dout nonconductive i had considered this very same thing well sort of my thought was to pump chilled mineral oil or glycerol directly over the core.
To chill it i was considering a pelter with the cold side directly exposed to the fluid.
I never followed through though no money no guts heheh
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Old 12th February, 2002, 02:43 PM
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the cray supercomputers use a liquid called Flourinert to cool the many, many processors inside the machines. this stuff is patented by 3M, and they're the only people who make it. it's damn, damn expensive. needless to say though, it's completely inert and therefore perfect for the job.

i read a article about a year ago about a bunch of crazies in australia who dumped a celly 533a into liquid-nitrogen-cooled flourinert and overclocked it like crazy. only thing is that the flourinert cost them AUS$5000.00 (!!!!!) or something for about 10 litres. lordy, that expensive!!! they also found that it's freezing point is too high, cos the ln2 made it all gooey.

mineral oil definitely seems to be the best option. email the guys at koolance (the case guys...) cos they had a computer in mineral oil at computex this year. maybe they'll tell you what they used.

cheers, and good luck! you're a braver/richer/more foolhardy soul than i am!
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Old 12th February, 2002, 03:29 PM
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yeah i saw a pic of it.. thats what spurred me on
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