This morning I tore apart the modded video card. The Fujik thermal glue on the heat sinks works very well and you have to use a bit of force to remove them but the good news is it does clean off reasonably easily with alcohol and patience. When I removed the GPU heat sink it became painfully obvious that there had been improper contact. About 1/3 of the GPU had NO thermal paste whatsoever on it. Very BAD sign. So I cleaned everything up and then bent the feet on the heat sink up a little bit to make sure that the copper base was making full contact with the GPU. I also trimmed the corners off the VRAM heat sink that was making contact with the heat pipes.
Originally I had used only 2 heat sinks on the VRAM chips, this time I used 3. I use two to cover the 3 chips that were close together putting half of each heat sink over the middle chip. I reseated the GPU heat sink and made sure the screws were good and tight and that I had full contact. I used MX-2 Thermal Paste on that.
Because the GPU had not made good contact the first time, and because the temps were so high I was really concerned that I might have permanently damaged the card. But I plugged it back in and was pleasantly surprised that it worked flawlessly AND the temps are now lower then the non-modded card! And yes I can now load my games without crashing!
Phase One has been successful! However I cannot mod the second card until I get a longer flexible CrossFire bridge for these cards. I will be sending an email off to Arctic Cooling to tell them that I think THEY should provide such a bridge with these units.
Now it's on to the next step of adding in the card reader and closing up the Lian Li Case. Wish me luck!