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[Picture Heavy] First custom loop, finally!

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Mar 28, 2003
After 18 years of being a member of this awesome forum, drooling over custom loops and high end hardware, I have finally joined the ranks of custom loop builders.

I think I am done with hardware upgrades for now, and have this system maxed out enough to where I feel I won't be swapping out and experimenting with different hardware on the norm.

Here is my first ever custom loop build. I honestly found hardline to be a lot less stressful to use than the horror stories I have read, and confident that with regular loop maintenance, I shouldn't have to worry to much about leaks. Now it's time to experiment with higher overclocks and different water cooling components!

I replaced the Lian Li O11 Dynamic with the XL version of the case, as even one of the thick radiators wouldn't fit in the original version.

Currently I am using only nickel and copper in the loop, with the following components:

CPU Block: EK Supremecy
GPU Block :EK Vector FTW3
Reservoir: EK X3 250
Pump: EK-XTOP Evo D5
Radiators: EK CoolStream XE 360mm lower, and XSPC RX360 upper
Tubing: EK 14mm PETG Hard Line
Fittings: EK Quantum Torque HDC 14mm
Fans: DeepCool RGB 120mm on the radiators - BeQuiet Silent Wings 3 for front

I was able to get the reservoir, pump, XSPC radiator and the blocks used, for cheap, and only had to purchase new fittings, tube and second radiator.

I do have an EK Quantum Kinetic pump top res to play with later, which would put the pump and res together instead of separate components, but so far I'm enjoying the complexity of the loop, just for the looks.

As for fluid, I was running distilled water with DasCool biocide treatment for the first two weeks, and just switched over to using distilled water with EK's CryoFuel power pink clear color. Not sure on the color, as the RGB has to be blue for it to look pink, otherwise the res fluid looks red. I'm staying away from Opaque and metallic solids like Vue and Aurora, as they seem to be clogging up loops and blocks.

The only thing I feel could be replaced with something better, at this moment, is the CPU block, as there was a small spot or two where the nickel plating seems to be corroded away.

Any suggestions???


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Thanks bmwbaxter!

I've done a fair amount of arcylic and plexi stuff for work, but never with tubing. Working with the PETG tubing was actually a lot easier than I anticipated, and very forgiving when it comes to reshaping or making adjustments to an existing bend. I would say that heating the tubing is more of a "feeling" than a science, and use of silicone cord and smooth sided for assisting with the bends makes quick work of tube formation.

The one tube that gave me trouble was the lower radiator to the CPU block, where it goes around the GPU and then three more "twists" before it goes into the CPU block. That one took me a good hour of thinking and tweaking to get it just right.