Welcome to stillthinking. My name is Attila and this is my site, totally devoted to my adventures in building custom personal computer cases.
How did I get started making these things? Well, it all kind of happened by accident. Back in 2004, my partners family computer broke down, I took a look at it and figured that it may be the power supply. Of course I wasn’t certain and being a total noob (and a chicken) I offered to take it down to the computer store for repairs. This was the only PC in the house, and was shared by mum and her three sons, so it was pretty important. When I picked up the PC, sure enough they just changed the Power supply and charged a hefty $190.00 for the privilege. I looked at a local computer mag and found that a generic PSU (like the one that had just been put into my partners PC), could be had for $35.00. Well, that just pissed me off big time. I decided it was time that I got to know a little bit more about these PC thingies that were just about everywhere.
I thought the best place to start was to buy a few PC magazines and see what I could learn. At the time, here in Australia, five magazines were published locally. I started by buying a couple, but pretty soon I was buying all five every month, I just couldn’t get enough information on hardware, software, anything to do with computing. By the end of the year I had decided that I knew enough to have a crack at building my first PC. So one day I went to a parts store and got together all the components to build my first PC. It was all very new and greatly exciting.
But how did I come to making PC cases I hear you ask again.
Well I’d always made stuff. All sorts of stuff. Paintings, furniture, even bird cages. When the time came to move in with my partner, I decided that a nice new computer desk was in order. This was big enough to house two PC’s and loads of peripherals. So for a short time I was happy playing around with hardware and trying out any software I could get my hands on. So much so that I decided to build another PC, and have two. It wasn’t long before I started itching to make something, and my mind drifted to the idea of making a case to hold both PC’s. So one day in 2005 I started to make my first case.
The first efforts at case building were fairly rough, but I was only learning, and with each revision the work got better. I wont go into too much detail but I’ve included some pics of my early efforts below.
Just after I finished my first case, the first version of a dual PC, I found out about ‘case modding’ from a magazine called ‘Atomic’. They had a monthly competition called ‘hotbox’. To enter, all you had to do was send in some photo’s of your ‘mod’ and the readers would vote for their favourite online. So I sent in some photo’s and to my delight, I won. Woot! My prizes were a high end motherboard and a graphics card.
Although I’ve never actually ‘modded’ a PC case, I did use already made case parts (motherboard trays) from a commercially available case for my first few builds.
The term ‘modding’ refers to modifying a pre-built, commercially available PC case, but very soon people started to build their cases from the ground up and this still came under the banner of modding. Today, if you look at the various modding forums you’ll see that modifying purchased PC cases is still the preferred way to make something unique and have some fun at the same time. But increasingly more enthusiasts are designing and building cases from ‘scratch’, from the ground up. This obviously allows for more freedom in the look and functionality of the case, but also allows various materials and techniques to be used. As long as you have fun it doesn’t matter which way you go.
In the years since my first build, I’ve continued on building more ambitious works, learning and improving my skills working with various materials but mainly aluminium. I don’t know how long I will continue to make these works, but I’m still having fun and I’m stillthinking.
On this site, among other things, you will find some guides that I have written. These are, for the most part, just taken from worklogs that I’ve made. I think that some good information can be gleaned from these guides. By no means do I think that everything is covered in any one guide, or, that they are very comprehensive. More that they provide an insight into how I do things and as such can be of some benefit for an aspiring builder.
Obviously much more information can be found on the web about any of the areas that I’ve written about. However I still think that the best teacher is to knuckle down and get dirty. Just go out and make stuff. Try different things, refine your skills, spend time and effort making what you want to make.
I learned most of what I know by ‘doing it’. Working it out. Thinking about it.
You should too.
Be aware that the views and opinions published here belong to the author. Guides included on this site are the way I do things and are not an exhaustive or thorough examination of the subject under discussion. There may be different and better ways to achieve a desired result, the best advice I can give is ‘look around’, there is always a better way to do anything
© Copyright 2010-2011 Attila Lukacs