A minor case mod for the CoolerMaster “HAF Stacker 915R”

Recently I bought a CoolerMaster “HAF Stacker 915R” case for a new mini-ITX server I’m building, based around the ASRock AM1H-ITX board. I bought mostly because it was cheap, but also because it claimed you could mount a lot of fans (6x 120mm or 4x 140mm) on the side panels. What I didn’t realize until I was installing drives in it was that you can’t have the side panel fans and the drive cage installed at the same time:

No room on this side
No room on this side either

As delivered, the case has the drive bay mounted at the front cooled by a 92mm fan in the front panel – but that didn’t work for me, partly because the fan cable for the front fan doesn’t reach back as far as the motherboard! In addition, the motherboard I am using has the option of being driven by a 19V external DC power supply, at which point it supplies power to the drives from a SATA power socket on the board – and that cable couldn’t reach the drive bays either.

So I decided that instead of mounting the drives across the case, I’d rotate the bay 90% and run them front-to-back. 4 small holes later..

4 small holes drilled

Now there is room for the fan at the side:

Plenty of room!

You can still get the drives in and out of the bays without having to remove it from the case:

The tray fits between the front panel and the cage

There’s plenty of clearance for the fan:

There is only just clearance between the front edge of the motherboard and the rear of the drive. Note that because I’m using the DC input on this board, I don’t need to use the ATX power connector, so potentially fouling that isn’t an issue for this build.

I’m now much more confident that the drives will get the cooling they need.

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