Reverse Fuel mod

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loonvf
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby loonvf » Mon Jul 23, 2007 2:29 am

Hi mia,

Keep up the good work.
I expect the motherboard to arrive this week so it would be very cool if the PSU connections are measured by then ;)

All the best,

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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Mon Jul 23, 2007 8:06 am

loonvf wrote:Hi mia,

Keep up the good work.
I expect the motherboard to arrive this week so it would be very cool if the PSU connections are measured by then ;)

All the best,


Will do, I think I might be going back to SGI for non obvious reasons, so I have to do this anyway. I left the scene for over a year (way too much work) but I'm back.


Mia
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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Mon Jul 23, 2007 8:18 pm

I've looked at it real fast and it's doable, but it's not going to be easy.

PDU is no problem, it *seems* non standard pinout, but I would imagine it's relatively easy to modify an existing one to make it a fuel pdu, more on that later. I don't expect any difficulty there, the dimensions looked standard.

Motherboard is non standard size, mostly because of the cpu module, I believe it would be possible to locate in a standard case with a few extra holes, I yet have to find the right case, but I'm confident this will work. Cooling is another problem.

Picture (not from me) of the cpu module there: http://www.schrotthal.de/sgi/fuel/FUEL_6.html

Video (v10 or v12) might be tricky, I still have to crack it open to take a better look at it (didn't have the time today) that's still the major unknown, but I expect a happy outcome.

All in all, it sounds doable, I don't expect the final product to be smaller than a regular Fuel. I intend to take the whole fuel apart so I can start measuring stuff and try to find a proper case. The airflow will have to be redone entirely (using fans or liquid cooling). Using a G5 case is very unlikely to work.

I'm still looking into all that, more to come this week, it's not going to be easy. Let me know if you have some good ideas for casing, G5 wouldn't work (too small). I've considered rackmount, but it's not cool for a desktop. Also liquid cooling would be preferred to try to reduce possible noise.


Mia
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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Tue Jul 24, 2007 6:06 pm

I took everything out, from motherboard to video card and power supply to measure things. From what I see, it seems doable.


Mia
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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Tue Jul 24, 2007 6:09 pm

The mobo is 14'5 by 16 that's huge.
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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Tue Jul 24, 2007 8:06 pm

Okay, I bought a case, it's a little ugly, but it might work. I don't really know if it will, we'll see when I get it I guess. It's ground shipping, so it might take a week to show up. I'm not sure I want to tell you which case I bought at this point (it's not SGI or Apple, it's some crappy PC case maker) so you'll just have to wait for the pictures :)

If this doesn't work, I'll just build a pc out of this case or resell it, no big deal. The fuel was all taken apart, and parts were cleaned up.

This case I just bought is just experimental, if it works, I'll try to find some better looking one, we'll see. This is quite fun anyway. This case is certainly not as good looking as some SGI product, but that's not my primary concern at this point, it's a part of a much bigger project.


Mia
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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Tue Jul 24, 2007 8:47 pm

While I will be waiting for this new case, I plan to study the cooling part. I intend to replace the original heatsinks, I have not yet decided if this will go water cooling or air cooling. One think I've considered is that the original Fuel PDU is 450W, I may try to replace it with something else; I will as well study the pinout.


Mia
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RageX
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby RageX » Tue Jul 24, 2007 9:13 pm

The Fuel has, supposedly, an ATX MOB (not quite?) ... but you'll need to get the hacksaw out to accommodate the graphics card? The Fuel puts the graphics at the bottom of the case, it's not part of the AGP/PCI/PCI-Express card cage area ...

I'm guessing your budget is small but have you considered a custom case? We built a custom rack mount case for a customer and the tooling and sheet metal charges were only a few thousand; the Engineering time was a lot more $$$ ;). The injection molding is another story ... $$$

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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Tue Jul 24, 2007 9:33 pm

RageX wrote:The Fuel has, supposedly, an ATX MOB (not quite?) ... but you'll need to get the hacksaw out to accommodate the graphics card? The Fuel puts the graphics at the bottom of the case, it's not part of the AGP/PCI/PCI-Express card cage area ...

I'm guessing your budget is small but have you considered a custom case? We built a custom rack mount case for a customer and the tooling and sheet metal charges were only a few thousand; the Engineering time was a lot more $$$ ;). The injection molding is another story ... $$$


I've considered the graphics card, and I believe it might just work, some chassis work might be required but I'm confident this could be a "go". We'll know as soon as I receive the case. I've measured the mobo and this might just work.

I intend not to spend more than a few hundreds on this deal, simply because there's no need for it, it either works or it doesn't. If I was going to follow the custom case road (I thought about it) I'd rather go buy a Tezro or Origin 2k/Onyx^2. And quite honestly, a 600Mhz Octane2 is roughly $600, therefore, therefore why would I spend more than a few hundred bucks on a Fuel mod?

This is entirely an "amateur" case mod, don't expect anything shiny, but I intend to try, and I believe this is the most important thing. Also, and that's an important thing (at least for me) I bought a large case to reduce the overall noise, I intend to chose the fans carefully in that regard. I've also considered server cases, but I've decided not to go this way either as most of them are usually very noisy.

I've always considered that the original Fuel case was of mediocre quality, especially compared to the Octane 2. In that regard I do like the Octane 2 better than the fuel, unfortunately, the Octane 2 has limited number of drives and/or no possibility to handle a SATA drive and a CD/DVD reader, which is a showstopper to my project. The number of Octane 2 pci slots is also limited to 3 (4 for the Fuel), while this is not a major concern, this is a little plus.

I certainly hope that the case I've just bought will do the job, I would imagine I will receive it in about a week from today, which gives me enough time to think about the cooling part and other things.


Mia
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schleusel
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby schleusel » Fri Jul 27, 2007 4:33 am

mia wrote:While I will be waiting for this new case, I plan to study the cooling part. I intend to replace the original heatsinks, I have not yet decided if this will go water cooling or air cooling.


Keep the environmental monitoring of the L1 controller in mind here..

You'll have to resemble the original cooling quite precisely (i.e. 6 fans with certain minimum rpm - see the list in the fuel hardware aggregator thread: http://forums.nekochan.net/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=9046) or you'll have to disable the monitoring if you want the machine to stay powered on for longer than 60 seconds ;-)

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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Fri Jul 27, 2007 7:54 am

schleusel wrote:
mia wrote:While I will be waiting for this new case, I plan to study the cooling part. I intend to replace the original heatsinks, I have not yet decided if this will go water cooling or air cooling.


Keep the environmental monitoring of the L1 controller in mind here..

You'll have to resemble the original cooling quite precisely (i.e. 6 fans with certain minimum rpm - see the list in the fuel hardware aggregator thread: http://forums.nekochan.net/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=9046) or you'll have to disable the monitoring if you want the machine to stay powered on for longer than 60 seconds ;-)


I thought about this, I'm studying hard the cooling part now. Water cooling is not excluded, but I think I might simply replace the heatsinks with something with more punch.


Mia
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gcmandarine
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby gcmandarine » Sat Jul 28, 2007 6:52 am

Hi there,

Does anyone need a Sgi Fuel Case ?
I have two or three empty cases with front Bezel available for sale.
For europe only !

Guillaume

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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Sat Jul 28, 2007 7:03 am

gcmandarine wrote:Hi there,

Does anyone need a Sgi Fuel Case ?
I have two or three empty cases with front Bezel available for sale.
For europe only !

Guillaume


I'm afraid the shipping costs themselves would be higher than buying a used fuel here, in the US. But thanks for the offer, I just bought a 500Mhz fuel with a v10, 1GB ram, 18GB HD on craigslist for $100; not the best deal in the world considering it's "only" a 500Mhz but I needed some parts for my fuel surgery.


Mia
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loonvf
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby loonvf » Wed Aug 01, 2007 11:07 pm

Yesterday I went to another Nekochan member to test the Fuel motherboard.
He has a working Fuel that's why.
So I connected his PSU to the motherboard only (no CPU or memory) and we connected a PC running hyperterm via a serial nullmodem cable to the internal L1 connector.

However only a few characters came out but we were not able to get the PSU running anyway (most likely we used the wrong switch as we learned). Anyway, we then assembled his Fuel again and connected that Fuel internal L1 to the PC but also there was no usefull output visible. 19200/8/1/no we used all the time.
Then we deceided to use the serial on the back of the Fuel and finally we got output running at 9600/8/1/no. That gave good output on the terminal.
But using these settings on the interal L1 did not work either.

Does anyone have any idea what cable, serial settings and terminal settings the L1 controller needs, both the internal and external connector?

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mia
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Re: Reverse Fuel mod

Unread postby mia » Thu Aug 02, 2007 12:22 am

loonvf wrote:Yesterday I went to another Nekochan member to test the Fuel motherboard.
He has a working Fuel that's why.
So I connected his PSU to the motherboard only (no CPU or memory) and we connected a PC running hyperterm via a serial nullmodem cable to the internal L1 connector.

However only a few characters came out but we were not able to get the PSU running anyway (most likely we used the wrong switch as we learned). Anyway, we then assembled his Fuel again and connected that Fuel internal L1 to the PC but also there was no usefull output visible. 19200/8/1/no we used all the time.
Then we deceided to use the serial on the back of the Fuel and finally we got output running at 9600/8/1/no. That gave good output on the terminal.
But using these settings on the interal L1 did not work either.

Does anyone have any idea what cable, serial settings and terminal settings the L1 controller needs, both the internal and external connector?


This is indeed a really good find, the L1 would be super useful for the application I'm looking to port or simply to use the Fuel as a server.
I've never really looked at it, but I assume L1 gives you temperatures and allows you to bounce/stop/start the fuel, correct?

Mia
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