This is the "Sputnik 0667". A kind of desk bureau housing a, well hidden, top modern computer hook up. The shell is made of walnut combined with MDF and has a sort of 50's sci-fi look to it I guess, although I´ve mixed with influences from the entire 20th century. Its a retro mess with a sort of Cold War look to it. The color concept is a combination of walnut, brass and matte black. This is my private computer, and I use it at home everday. The measurements are 90x55x60cm, so it´s quite a mouthfull. But it´s the size that matters, right?? It works a nice airflow using a big cpu cooler and two 12mm quiet Scythe fans for in and out - side to side flow.
The computer specs are:
Gigabyte GA-H55N-USB3 Mini-ITX
Intel Core i3 550 3.2GHz
500GB Western Digital
Corsair CX 430W
Gigabyte GeForce GTX 460
Cooler Master Hyper TX3
2x Scythe 120mm Gentle Typhoon
monitor: AOC e2043Fs
sound: TASCAM us-122l and old speakers
Hope you´ll like it!
Step 1: Sketching
Here are the inluences I used for the first sketches. The basic idea was to have a kind of an office hidden inside a furniture.
I added the trapezoid lines and angles from the old Commodore PET and decided to work with walnut as material. The vision took shape in Rhinoceros where I could suit the artifact to the measurements from the newly arrived components. I chose to work with a mini-ITX due to the narrow depth of a regular desktop. A lot of hardware was going in there, and I started to understand the importance of good ventilation. It was a wooden box and I had to push the heat away somehow. Getting the CPU cooler in place was like surgery to me, so a water cooling system was out of the question. Instead I chose to work with a simple in-and-out system with two 120mm fans on the sides, and just hoped for the best I guess. When the 3-D modeling in Rhino was finished, I started with the basic woodworking.
Step 2: The beginning
I used 18mm MDF and walnut veneer for the main shell. Cut holes for airflow and put the 4 sides together.
Step 3: The front
I started on the front hatch/desk by making a key housing hole. The desk got a keyboard in walnut, replaceable for the use of other applications such as a DIY lightbox and a Wacom pen tablet. When the hatch is closed, the keyboard stays in place by two small
walnut taps. The outside of the hatch was adorned by a beautiful convex glass window, stolen from an old broken Victorian clock that I had found on a flea market. It enriches the front and is most likely my favorite detail on Sputnik. The hatch was now to be glued onto the wooden hinges and thereby incorporated into the piece.I wanted the hinges to be in massive walnut - no fabricated metal fittings. Due to precise margins between the hatch and the inner panel - which was yet to me made - it was a complex task. It took me quite a while, but I got it right and could start working on the panel.
Step 4: Panel panel panel
Inspired by the Compaq Portable and old televisions I designed a layout composed by monitor, DVD, speaker system (mono of course), push buttons, LED diodes and a storage space for the wireless mouse. I also wanted the panel to have a darker tone than the outside and tried a pigment based varnish on the veneer. This resulted in a nice tone, but looked a bit too slick for my taste.
So I tried fine sandpaper on certain spots to simulate the authentic look of appealing decay. I tested the monitor and it worked really good too. I made the storage - a sort of mouse garage covered by a small jalousie sliding door. And I also mounted the lighting in the roof piece.
Step 5: The foot
When I made the foot, I experimented a lot with the height and nailed it with its current 125mm. Had I made it any taller, the angle of the folded hatch would have become too extreme and an ergonomic failure. With the foot mounted underneath the case I now had a complete, but empty Sputnik shell.
Step 6: The guts
I made some decoration stripes with stencils, painted with pigment varnish and sanded some. I then used Danish Oil for a nice finish on the case. I put the HW inside, made a stand for the dvd and mounted the fans, speakers, HDD etc.
Step 7: The back
I made a perforated backside (a lot of drilling) and made holes for I/O. I decorated the panel with some kind of signature and finished it up by painting it in dark brown. The panel can be removed really easily. Two screws and you´re in!
Step 8: Final touch
For the final touch I put a golden solar system behind the brass window.. And for the eight planets I used brass buttons in different sizes.
Step 9: Final shots!
I also created a 50′s/60′s style ad to compliment the case. Well, hope you´ll like it!!