Case modding, we all want to do it. The appeal of having a unique case designed and built to reflect your own personality is strong in all gamers – even console owners. If you have the budget, the will and the case to mod, you only need the right tools to do the job. Below are five useful tools that should make your life easier when attempting some DIY.
If a modder only had one tool in his kit, this would be it. The Dremel is a high speed rotary tool, a bit like a mini drill. An extensive array of add-on bits exist for the Dremel, and allow it to perform a variety of actions. These include drilling, grinding, cutting, polishing, sanding an engraving.
The original Dremel branded tools are high quality, but at a price. Similar tools from brands such as Bosch and Ryobi exist at a lower cost than a Dremel if you’re working on a budget. A high speed hand-held multi-tool is available from most local hardware retailers including Builders Warehouse and Midas.
Cable pin remover
No modern PC mod is complete without cable sleeving, it’s become as common as a black PC case. As a result of this, you need a tool to remove power supply connectors. Locally, NakedIT does stock a PSU molex connector removal kit, though I’m not sure how useful they are.
Better suited to removing molex connectors is a “Pin-remover” from MDPC-X. The good is that this tool makes your life a pleasure when dealing with cable sleeving. The other good is that the tool is sold by MDPC-X, a store associated with high quality products at competitive prices.
There is some bad though; MDPC-X is based in Germany, which means paying exorbitant shipping costs. The alternative involves a bent staple and a pair of pliers, but that’s another story…
A common piece of kit used by DIYers; a vice grip is used to hold items in place while you mod them. A trick I use when dealing with a vice grip, it to place a piece of cork between the vice grip and the material (Metal, Perspex, mesh wire etc) to prevent the vice damaging the material.
Vice grips are available in all shapes and sizes from local hardware stores.
Nibbler and file
A nibbler is a tool used to cut soft material, such as sheet metal or Perspex with minimal distortion. Nibblers are usually used to remove larger pieces of the material, before the modder moves on to the file. Once a more delicate approach is needed, the user will take the file and carefully shave of pieces of the material to achieve the desired shape.
If even more delicate fine tuning is required, a sanding tube attached to a dremel can be used. Various sized nibblers are available from local hardware stores.
Rivet gun (and rivets)
Seen as a more permanent alternative to holding everything together with screws, rivets are found in almost every modern PC case to hold most of the structure together. Pneumatically powered rivet guns are common but expensive, though hand held “squeeze” guns do exist for those on a budget. Rivets come in a variety of sizes and are found at many local hardware stores.
Do you have experience modifying PC cases? Share your wisdom in the comments below and on the MyGaming forum.