When my Sheevaplug power supply took a turn for the worse, I decided it was time to do some modifications.
I had already modified my old V1.3 pcb by fitting and enabling the Esata connection, (see old posts).
I have never used the Sheevaplug as a "plug" computer, my mains power strips are difficult to reach and full of heavy cables. I could never see the point of struggling to connect a USB stick, the console cable and the esata cable in the dark under my desk, so I have always used the device on the desktop or on a shelf with the supplied mains cable. The connections are still fragile, and one has to be careful that they are not disengaged.
The Sheevaplug although not in the same central heating radiator class as the Guruplug, still runs very hot. There is not enough cooling in the tiny plug enclosure.
So I decided to make a new enclosure. I purchased a "Hammond" extruded die cast aluminium box from Maplins and mounted my Sheeva pcb and my 500 Gb Sata 2.5 in hard drive in it.
I obtained some new heat sink padding, which I put between the I.c.s and the Sheeva aluminium heat sink. The original heat sink pads were very thin and was missing in two places, a very shoddy job by Globalscale originally!) I mounted the stack on the lid of the box with white grease heat compound between the Sheeva heat sink plate and the lid. I used the coil springs from the old enclosure to give some expansion when the heatsink expands, I did not want to strap it too tightly and damage the ic cases or lead frames.
The reason I mounted the pcb on the lid was that I can slide the lid out of the case and then work on the pcb at my convenience, it still being heat sunk to the lid. ( I can also connect the console mini usb with the lid out.)
It became apparent that it was going to be difficult to connect to a Sata hard drive in the case, since the Sheeva pcb Esata connector pokes though the end plate, so I had to bodge an out and in cable run.
I am using an external 5V 3A power brick.
In use the box does not get appreciably warm even after many hours running. I have Debian Squeeze installed on the hard drive, running very nicely. I am now building the ultimate low power home server.
When I can find a couple of 5.1mm power connectors I will make a little power breakout cable, and measure the 5V current draw into the enclosure.
I have attached some pictures of the box