Custom Chassis Inspiron 7559

Discussion in 'Notebook Cosmetic Modifications and Custom Builds' started by jedi22300, Aug 19, 2020.

  1. jedi22300

    jedi22300 Newbie

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    First time posting here after I recently found out about other people posting their laptop modifications. The idea behind this project was to make my Inspiron 7559 lighter and smaller than the original because it was barely fitting into my backpack's laptop sleeve.

    This iteration is the second. The first one was made out of wood/aluminum and had a drop down hinge design


    Finished photo first
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    One fin stack had to be sacrificed to make the laptop's length shorter
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    Chassis was made out of 0.025" sheet aluminum. Bent with pliers and cut with dremel.
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    Hinges stolen from an old XPS 12. You can see in this image the reinforcement plate for the hinges on the lid. The plate increases rigidity and reduces screen wobble. I forgot to put another plate on the keyboard deck though :(
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    Area under the motherboard was plastidipped to prevent shorting. Speakers stolen from an old HP envy. Thermal pad can be seen on the SSD which transfers heat to the bottom aluminum panel.
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    Power plug was moved to face the rear to keep it out of the way, as I always hate power cables that stick out the side
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    A bit difficult to see, but the side vent where the third fin stack used to be is now blocked off with a piece of aluminum to prevent air from escaping
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    First successful test boot! It actually didn't boot the first time because the power button was shorting out. Thought I bricked it until I figured that one out. Scary stuff. But Jedi what are you gonna do with the wifi antennas? This was also a difficult question to answer at the time. I'm no radio expert after all.
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    Ended up moving it at the butt that sticks out. The connection isn't amazing, but it works well enough. Again, not a radio expert so I'm not sure exactly how it works nor how I can improve it lol. Btw the weight came out to be around 1.97kg (4.3lbs) which is around 0.73kg (1.6lbs) lighter than the original chassis.
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    The keyboard deck was then covered with 3d printed sheets to hide the uglies.
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    3d printed flip up feet to improve airflow
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    And this is the bottom panel. Flipping the feet up increases the airflow, but you may notice there's not much intake vents which is intentional.
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    A bunch of air comes in through the open front. After some testing, I found this intake design to help with component temperatures like the motherboard and the SSD temps because the air flows over them on the way over to the fans.
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    Size comparison with original chassis. Difficult to tell in the picture, but it is a decent size difference and it definitely fits in my backpack a lot easier now.
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    Some more finished pics!
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    Butt
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    And of course since this is a tech forum, here's an aida64+heaven stress test. Thermals aren't amazing or anything but personally don't really care as long as it doesn't throttle, considering this is only a measly i5-6300hq.
    [​IMG]

    Thanks for reading! Hope you guys enjoyed it.
     
  2. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox BGA Filth-Hating Elitist

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    Wow, you put a lot of work into that. Not many people would take on a project that big. I am impressed that you did. It looks like it is working well for you, too. Thank you for sharing your project with us.

    You should also share photos of your last version that was made from wood.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2020
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  3. Charles P. Jefferies

    Charles P. Jefferies Lead Moderator Super Moderator

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    Amazing work and writeup!

    Charles
     
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  4. jedi22300

    jedi22300 Newbie

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    Sure! Here are some pics of the first version.
    Drop down hinge. Idea of this was to raise the rear to improve airflow without a thicc rubber feet that makes the overall laptop thicker. Also hides the bottom chin bezel.
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    Trying to get an idea of the size of the chassis. Keyboard deck is wood while the outer shell is aluminum. You can see the third fin stack still attached.
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    Gap between fan and fins were covered with aluminum with the idea being to transfer heat to the fan housing and dissipate a bit more heat. I think MSI does something similar on their gaming laptops.
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    Drop down hinge is hard to get right, but it kind of worked. However, the gap between the exhaust and display was very small.
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    Internal shot. Duct tape blocks off the side exhaust.
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    Rear view shows how janky this one is lol
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    Bottom panel shows my limited understanding of laptop airflow at the time. Fans definitely weren't choked though.
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    You can see in the pic that the lid is offset, which means that the top actually isn't fully covered when closed. This is intentional just to reduce the volume as much as possible, albeit looking extremely ugly. Can also see the black plastic covers for the wifi antennas.
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    Top firing speakers that are misaligned. Keyboard is just glued on top of the wood. You can see in this pic the wifi antennas as well, which are in the lid. It's exposed because the aluminum would otherwise block the reception. I didn't want to put it in the lid with the second one because of how ugly it is exposed.
    [​IMG]

    Thermals: not good. CPU and GPU thermals were fine, but the lack of airflow inside the chassis made something overheat and thermal throttle, causing the CPU to downclock severely while gaming. I had to really do some thinking on how to solve the issue in the second iteration, and I'm glad to say I haven't experienced the problem with the new chassis.

    Also the wood was starting to bend slightly from the heat, which definitely isn't ideal. 0/10 would not recommend cheap low quality plywood for laptop building.
     
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  5. Rengsey R. H. Jr.

    Rengsey R. H. Jr. I Never Slept

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    Really nice. You should maybe wrap it or paint it. I am sure it will look nice.
     
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  6. Clamibot

    Clamibot Notebook Evangelist

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    I really like the industrial look of the aluminum chassis. I wish more laptops had that kind of appearance.
     
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