CPU Cooler Upgrade

See server build post here, as I thought I had encountered hardware issues, I swapped out the stock cooler with something a bit better. The Arctic Alpine 64GT rev.2 is a cheap (less than £10) upgrade and the larger fan should in theory be a little quieter and the bigger heatsink so be more efficient.

Here is the motherboard with stock cooler

The new Cooler

Cooler much bigger than the original

To fit, I just removed the old one, cleaned the CPU with isopropyl alcohol to remove the old thermal paste and clipped the cooler in. It arrived pre-applied with thermal paste.

Motherboard installed in the case

Job done, seems quieter and a temps are better.

Server Build

I wanted a server for a while to take care of streaming music, streaming films, backup documents, photo storage, print server and anything else I need. I avoided the cheaper generally low powered NAS’s (I have a raspberry Pi that could do that) and decided to essentially build another pc to perform these tasks. It would be more powerful and offer more functionality. It will however cost more to run and take up more space. But I was happy with that.

Kit List

  • AMD APU A6-6400K (second hand)
  • MSI motherboard A88XM-E35 – FM2 socket
  • 4GB Generic RAM – now upgraded to corsair 1600mhz 4GB
  • 500gb Hitachi HDD – now upgraded to 120GB PNY Optima SSD
  • Silverstone SST-PS08W (with USB 3.0) case
  • 1tb data hard drive (see post here)
  • OS – Ubuntu 14.04.1LTS
  • BeQuiet 350w 80+ power supply
  • Pioneer BDC-207DBK Bluray drive
  • Arctic Cooling Alpine 64 rev.2 CPU cooler
  • Arctic mx2 thermal paste
  • Isopropanol alcohol (for cpu cleaning)

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Second Bed Build

Following on from the last bed build (see part 1, part 2), I made a second one. This time a full UK double size rather than a UK small double. As it was a full double I again added the centre 2×4″ and also a centre leg for extra strength.Frame made in the same way as before, 4×1″ for the legs, 2×4″ for the frame and 1×4″ for the slats. Prior to assembly, I cut everything to size, sanded it and varnished with water based polyurethane (dries much faster than oil based).

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Free To Air Satellite TV FAQs

So if you’ve seen this post (click here) here are some answers to a few questions I’ve had regarding a DIY installed satellite system.

  • what is FTA?

Free to air channels are channels broadcast by satellite unencrypted.

  • OK what don’t I get?

All the sky channels are encrypted so you can’t get them. You also only get a now and next programme information – no seven day electronic programme guide (EPG.)

  • What is FreeSat?

Free sat is a group of free to air channels that pay to be part of freesat and get put on the freesat seven day (EPG).

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Installing A Monitor Mount

I had some spare IT kit and I thought it would be useful have a PC and monitor in the workshop.

I wanted to mount the monitor on the wall out the way, so I purchased the cheapest swivel monitor mount off ebay for about £7.

I was given an old pc minus a hard drive so I found one in the stores and then installed Xubuntu 14.04LTS which was all easy enough, added a £3 ebay usb wi-fi stick and a keyboard and mouse I had kicking about.

To mount it I decided to fix the bracket to a piece of 2×4″ then the 2×4″ to the wall, this will provide four fixings in the wall rather than two so should be more secure.

To begin, I took a piece of scrap 2×4, and bevelled the ends for aesthetics and marked where I wanted the 2×4″ to be fixed to the wall.

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Replacing a washing machine seal

Replacing a washing machine seal on a Bosch WAE24367GB/14

The seal on our washing machine either perished or something got caught up in it and so I was left with a large pool of water on the floor after a wash had completed. A bit of research followed and luckily it seemed easy enough to replace. Then I identified exactly which part number was required. Genuine part ordered and arrived for £30ish the real work started. I followed this youtube video, which although was for a different Bosch machine was basically the same.
Link to Video (no affiliation)

Here is the damaged seal:

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Wooden speaker brackets from 2×4″ and 2×3″

I wanted to make some speaker brackets for the new (old) mission speakers I acquired for the workshop and having some scrap 2×4″, 2×3″ and MDF, I made up these.

I was inspired by this design from instructables LINK. I choose to amend the design by choosing to use lots of wood glue(!) and mitred some of the edges for aesthetics.

I cut the pieces to size, sanded and fixed with wood screws and lots of wood glue. These will easily support the speakers and I think look good. By cutting the 2×3″ this way it will ensure that there is plenty of room to fix the brackets to the wall either side of the brace. I used two fixings at the top and one fixing at the bottom. This seems to be holding them very securely.

Parts cut

Job done.

Workshop Sounds – Lepai Amplifier

Lepai/Lvpin Tripath Amplifer

I had been looking for an amplifier for the workshop for a while and read about these small and cheap amplifiers on the DIYAudio forum [link to diy audio posts]. The posts suggested that although cheaply made the amps sound great and are very easy to mod.  So order placed and £19.99 later it arrived. My new version can badged as Lvpin, the new name for Lepai (apparently meaning “dependable product” in Mandarin”). I ordered one without a PSU, I happened to have an external hard drive PSU offering 12v DC 2 Amps output so I hooked that up first to check how this budget amp would fare.

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Workmate table top

Workmate table top

I wanted to build a worktop to be clamped into a workmate or folding workbench to provide a larger working area and as I had some spare 18mm MDF, 2×2″ and 2×3″ CLS I used them. MDF can and does warp so I framed the edges with the 2×3″ which I glued and clamped and then drove a few screws to hold in place. This will provide extra strength and also provide a surface to clamp against.

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Building a bookcase

Building  a bookcase from pine as a present, here is the finished result:

After looking online for a while I found these plans which looked easy to build and would disassemble for moving.

So after settling on the plans I gathered up the following:

  • 1×9″ PSE Pine x4@ 1.8m
  • 1×4″ PSE Pine x6 @ 900mm
  • M8 300mm Threaded rod
  • M8 Lock Nuts
  • M8 Penny Washers
  • Polyurethane Varnish (oil based)

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Free To Air Satellite Install

After seeing a review for a skybox f5 on the AVforums link, I decided I wanted some extra TV channels and more HD channels and a so following some purchases I had everything I needed (I also wanted a project):

  • Zone 2 sat dish with quad LNB £23.99 (I decided to get a larger zone 2 satellite dish as I had plans to add an additional 1 or 2 LNBs to the setup to receive more channels at a later date.)

The dish arrived with a Quad LNB

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