• This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn more.

Cable Management guide (Part 2)


Modding Addict
Political User
Sorry about that folks, would fit in one post

Dealing With Data Cables

The data cables that connect your drives to the motherboard require the most creativity to route neatly and out of the way. And a few lessons in the art of Japanese origami couldn’t hurt. To keep your data cables in check, you’ll need a few strategically placed strips of double-sided tape and some perfectly placed folds. We find it’s best to work with ribbon cables folded in multiple right angles leading from the motherboard to a drive. Think of each fold in three dimensions. Use one fold to point the cable in the right direction and another to lift the cable off the motherboard tray to align the connector with your drive. Use double-sided tape to secure the cables to the motherboard tray or side of the case, and they’ll hold their shape and stay in place. In our build we were able to keep three ribbon cables (one floppy, two IDE) routed flat against the motherboard tray, which is ideal for optimal airflow.

Rounded cables, in some circumstances, could also help clean up a system’s internals, but only when they’re stretched out and don’t need to be hidden. Bundling the excess length of a rounded cable is difficult because there are limits to how they can bend and remain properly connected to a motherboard or drive. We find the flat, 80-wire ribbon cables are far easier to work with and manage in most cases.

The Finished Product

The effort put into properly wiring a system really pays off. The cabling is more rigid, and it will remain secured in place when the system is in transit. In addition, air can move more freely throughout the case, making each component run cooler and more reliably, while keeping dust buildup within the system at a minimum. Replacing or adding expansion cards or drives also becomes much easier because everything within the system is wide open and free from obstructions. The only downsides are the time and monetary investments, but the return far outweighs those investments in our opinion.
Tools Of The Trade

To properly wire a case, an assortment of tools will make the job much easier and ultimately make the end results look much better. Most tools listed here are available at a local RadioShack or similar electronics supply store or even an auto parts store. They’re also available online from multiple retailers. We’ve compiled a list of the most useful items to save you some time. Stock up on a few of them and you’ll be prepared to rewire dozens of systems.

•Double-adhesive tape. Double-adhesive tape is very useful for securing flat ribbon cables in place and for mounting small decorative items to a system. (3M; $5; www.3m.com)

• Wire ties. Wire ties are perfect for tidying up a nest of wires. They’re available in a wide assortment of sizes and colors. (RadioShack; $7.99 [pack of 300]; www.radioshack.com)

•Adhesive wire tie mounts. You can use adhesive wire tie mounts to attach wire ties to almost any flat surface within your case. (RadioShack; $2.29; www.radioshack.com)

•Cable sheathing. Flexible cable sheathing is a great way to neaten your system’s internal wiring while adding a bit of color. (CrazyPC; $1.25 per foot; www.crazypc.com)

•Molex/ATX pin remover. To replace Molex or ATX power connectors, or to properly install cable sheathing, you’ll need a pin removal tool to get the job done right. (CrazyPC; $6.99; www.crazypc.com)

•Velcro straps. Velcro straps are a reusable alternative to nylon wire ties. They are available in a wide assortment of colors and sizes. (ThinkGeek; $3.49; www.thinkgeek.com)

•Split-wire loom. You can slip split-wire loom over a bundle of wires to keep them neat and organized. It’s available in numerous colors and sizes. (Xoxide; $2 per foot; www.xoxide.com)


Somewhat eXPerienced
Would you be able to post more pictures on how you completed the ribbon folding? That's one thing I was never good at and visual aids would be appreciated, I know there is only one picture in the first post.

Members online

No members online now.

Latest posts

Latest profile posts

Hello, is there anybody in there? Just nod if you can hear me ...
What a long strange trip it's been. =)

Forum statistics

Latest member