Billet Machining A Special Xbox

The world of console modding has delivered us some amazing projects over the years, usually rendering an original into a completely different form factor. [Modified] has done a special bit of console modding on an Xbox Series X, with the unusual result of keeping exactly the same form factor. What makes it special? His Series X has been given a new case, almost identical to the original, but instead of molded plastic it’s machined entirely from a single billet of aluminium stock.

From one perspective it’s a slightly crazy endeavor — pushing the limits of his mill to remove 90% of the stock. But from another it’s an interesting tale of how to approach such a project, of the challenges in reaching further into a workpiece than the tooling is designed for, and also of the cooling for the Xbox itself. Sure he could have made it from aluminium plate and screwed it together, but in doing so he’d have denied us the chance to follow a machining adventure.

The result is an Xbox that’s nominally the same as when it left the factory, but which looks so much cooler. Oddly the aluminum doesn’t act as a heatsink because the console is air-cooled, but particularly on the bottom there are more holes than were found in the original. On the front is an engraving of Master Chief from Halo 2‘s cover art which really puts the finishing touch on the build — though we wonder whether it might benefit from a little resin to make it stand out a bit.

Hungry for more Series X case mods? They don’t come bigger than this one!

12 thoughts on “Billet Machining A Special Xbox

  1. Too cheaply made for being a luxury, but too expensive to be affordable to make…

    Except for this feat, I don’t know why he used an aluminium billet instead of steel plates, and why he didn’t do another pass or polished it to remove the bands on the surface.

    1. Don’t know about the Concord, but one of the coolest uses of early CNC in big aerospace parts that I’m aware of is the construction of the Apollo service module.

      The structure of the SM is basically a set of frames that run the length of the rocket body and divide it into 6 pie-shaped wedges. Instead of being built up from individual pieces, each frame was milled from one thick sheet of aluminum creating the frame elements and leaving the web between them only a few hundredths of an inch thick.

      Apparently, it was an extremely cutting edge (no pun intended) project at the time. Think of a structure that looks like the Webb telescope mirrors, but with 10 times the surface area, being built on 1960’s machines.

      The pictures are, as with all Apollo hardware pictures, very cool by default.

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.