Prototyping Finn: Organic Materials, Industrial Look

Slin Design

Minimal Tinkerer
Original poster
May 21, 2018
4
25
Finn
by Slin Design




How It All Began:

Finn started as a project in my Junior year of high school where I experimented with laser cutters and got into the PC building scene. After building my first pc I wanted to do more. I wanted to build my own case from scratch after seeing projects like the Dan case and the S4 from NFC ect. become so popular. But unlike those I wanted to be flexible and be able to use the largest coolers and gpus as well as cheaper and more powerful power supplies. I set out to work on building my first case by creating some initial small designs. This is what i initially came up with.



Now this was only a prototype ⅛ of the size but before I could get to the full sized thing I needed to create some test benches.



After a few of those, I designed my case around it…



After cutting it out I saw that the structure was not stable and there was no easy way to fix the design with the tools I had. So, I started from scratch again. This time with many valuable lessons learned. After giving it a thought, I created a new design which Finn is based on.



Looks good on the outside, but the inside was another story…



So I posted the case on PCPartPicker.com and was surprised with the amount of support and encouragement I got from the community. Spurred on with the success of the first version of Finn I set out to design V2.

The first prototype of Finn was much stronger and had a simpler construction than the curved design but I wasn’t finished yet. The earliest prototype of Finn did not have any drive cages or support for radiators. So I fixed some of the shortcomings of the first iteration and came up with what Finn is now.

Final Design:



(I won't be using this wood again)



The outside looks very similar but the inside is totally redesigned.





In the first version there was no drive support but now Finn supports one 3.5in drive and two 2.5in drives as well as having some space in the front for cable management.

Goal:

Very soon I will start my funding campaign on Kickstarter. Any tips or help with starting a successful campaign would be much appreciated.

Extra:

I have marked this thread as prototyping but in reality it is very close to the funding stage. Feel free to make comments and suggestions.

Who is Slin?:

I assume that no one knows who I am (since I've never made a post) and that's why I'm introducing myself. I'm Nils Nietsch 18-year-old Dutch designer living in California looking to make an impression. I'm Dyslexic but that definitely hasn't stopped me :D. Cheers!
 
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Kmpkt

Innovation through Miniaturization
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Feb 1, 2016
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Nice work. Would be curious to see it re-done in Acrylic like a Parvum.
 

owliwar

Master of Cramming
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Apr 7, 2017
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Hey, congrats and welcome to the forum!
This looks really nice, I love the front I/o solution, very well balanced with the rest of the case.
 

Slin Design

Minimal Tinkerer
Original poster
May 21, 2018
4
25
Nice work. Would be curious to see it re-done in Acrylic like a Parvum.
I made some renders. what do you think?

(different roughness values)


I haven't worked with acrylic all that much so I am unfamiliar with the strength or the cost of the material but will definitely give it a shot when I get my hands on a laser cutter.

So this will be shipped flat and be reassembled?
Yes just like IKEA to reduce shipping costs.


Thanks! Owliwar and smitty2k1
 

Windfall

SFF Guru
Nov 14, 2017
1,240
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I REALLY like the look- It would be amazing in metal, but it would be too cost prohibitive. What will this cost?

You really only have two major issues (that few is rare with any design):

Rigidity; In some pictures, the fins are not parallel, or are warped. slotted brackets would raise cost but would make those fins line up straighter.

Burn Marks: This is a biggy- you are definitely going to have to epoxy coat or paint those- as cool as a natural finish is (this in bamboo- DROOOL) you cannot get a clean look with lasers. That doesn't leave you without options- specifically CNC routing. I would recommend the Millright Carve King or the Carbide 3D Shapeoko.


Other than that, great project!
 

Brude27

SFF Lingo Aficionado
Jun 21, 2018
132
178
This in acrylic or a nicer CNCed wood (bamboo) would make me VERY interested in your design as a product. Well done! I love the renders! Added to the list of threads I watch!
 

Smanci

SFF Lingo Aficionado
Apr 21, 2017
124
159
As a Finn I like the wood, design and the name. If this was made of some nicely treated oak / curly birch, I'd be all over it.
 
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Slin Design

Minimal Tinkerer
Original poster
May 21, 2018
4
25
Honestly I think you could have a pretty compelling price/performance/aesthetic combination here. Any plans to bring the case to retail in some form?
As of right now I am focusing on the Kickstarter. I will be a full-time student so time will be tight. I am not sure if I will sell retail but it is the end goal.

I REALLY like the look- It would be amazing in metal, but it would be too cost prohibitive. What will this cost?

You really only have two major issues (that few is rare with any design):

Rigidity; In some pictures, the fins are not parallel, or are warped. slotted brackets would raise cost but would make those fins line up straighter.

Burn Marks: This is a biggy- you are definitely going to have to epoxy coat or paint those- as cool as a natural finish is (this in bamboo- DROOOL) you cannot get a clean look with lasers. That doesn't leave you without options- specifically CNC routing. I would recommend the Millright Carve King or the Carbide 3D Shapeoko.


Other than that, great project!
The case uses 1/4 and 1/8 inch wood so to make it out of metal would probably cost way too much.

I'm not sure how much it will cost but my estimation is between $125 and $175

As for the rigidity, the fins are secured on three points using brackets (you can see this in the renders and photos) and it's warped because the wood I used was crappy (too thin and warped) especially in the second version. This won't be the case for the final product.

I will make some renders with no burn marks to simulate a CNC. good idea!

And with burn marks for comparison. (lighting is slightly different)


Thanks everyone for the interest and input!
 

Marvelm

Average Stuffer
Bronze Supporter
Oct 20, 2017
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Seems like each one of the wooden segments will be mounted separately right? This kind of makes it a pain to clean, also the dust would probably get in every nook and cranny :/
 

Phuncz

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May 9, 2015
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I made some renders. what do you think?

(different roughness values)


I haven't worked with acrylic all that much so I am unfamiliar with the strength or the cost of the material but will definitely give it a shot when I get my hands on a laser cutter.


Yes just like IKEA to reduce shipping costs.


Thanks! Owliwar and smitty2k1
If you are considering acrylic, be sure to look at the matte opaque panels from https://perspex.com/
@K888D uses these if I'm correct in the LZ7 and they are wonderful for case design, as they aren't glossy (no dust and fingerprints all over) and still have a nice polished edge where cut to give some contrast. Frosted white panels would give a nice soft glow I'd imagine with the lighting placed correctly.
 
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Windfall

SFF Guru
Nov 14, 2017
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As of right now I am focusing on the Kickstarter. I will be a full-time student so time will be tight. I am not sure if I will sell retail but it is the end goal.



The case uses 1/4 and 1/8 inch wood so to make it out of metal would probably cost way too much.

I'm not sure how much it will cost but my estimation is between $125 and $175

As for the rigidity, the fins are secured on three points using brackets (you can see this in the renders and photos) and it's warped because the wood I used was crappy (too thin and warped) especially in the second version. This won't be the case for the final product.

I will make some renders with no burn marks to simulate a CNC. good idea!

And with burn marks for comparison. (lighting is slightly different)


Thanks everyone for the interest and input!
Yeah, The CNC'd version is obviously going to be better. Plus, laser burns are inconsistent, meaning your render of it with a burn (while it looks good) won't actually be that way. It may go up on the wood face as well.
 

Slin Design

Minimal Tinkerer
Original poster
May 21, 2018
4
25
Seems like each one of the wooden segments will be mounted separately right? This kind of makes it a pain to clean, also the dust would probably get in every nook and cranny :/
The fins themselves only seem to accumulate dust on the top. And for me, the most dust accumulation is by the power supply. And yes the fins are mounted separately. :)

If you are considering acrylic, be sure to look at the matte opaque panels from https://perspex.com/
@K888D uses these if I'm correct in the LZ7 and they are wonderful for case design, as they aren't glossy (no dust and fingerprints all over) and still have a nice polished edge where cut to give some contrast. Frosted white panels would give a nice soft glow I'd imagine with the lighting placed correctly.
Thank you for the information I will definitely look into it. And I agree that glossy wouldn't look as good.

Yeah, The CNC'd version is obviously going to be better. Plus, laser burns are inconsistent, meaning your render of it with a burn (while it looks good) won't actually be that way. It may go up on the wood face as well.
I'm not so sure about your claims, I've had very good results with laser cutters and the burns (when using quality wood) are very consistent. And the burns you get on the top face can be fixed with good airflow and or masking tape.

Here are some examples of the cuts I made.
 
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Windfall

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Nov 14, 2017
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The fins themselves only seem to accumulate dust on the top. And for me, the most dust accumulation is by the power supply. And yes the fins are mounted separately. :)


Thank you for the information I will definitely look into it. And I agree that glossy wouldn't look as good.


I'm not so sure about your claims, I've had very good results with laser cutters and the burns (when using quality wood) are very consistent. And the burns you get on the top face can be fixed with good airflow and or masking tape.

Here are some examples of the cuts I made.
From James's Project Jolokia:

https://i.imgur.com/Wj2Lg8U.jpg
 

K888D

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Lazer3D
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Feb 23, 2016
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Burn marks on the top surface are fairly easy to control, its the underside of the sheet that proves more difficult due to the "flashback" of the laser reflecting off the supports that the sheet rests on top of.