Got the Dremel tool, did the requisite dremeling, did a partial assembly (no drives aside from the M.2). Passed the smoke test. I put in a bootable thumb drive with the ClearOS installer, got to the "choose your language" screen. Of course, as with all Linux installers, the early dmesg output squawked about rape, murder, and various other errors.
I guess I need to read the directions on the RGB controller for the front case fan; the button on the controller dongle had no discernible logic.
Next step is to try to parse the case instruction sheet and attempt to mount 3 drive innit. Not at all obvious.
Cable management is going to be beyond my mediocre skills, I gotta get one of my former students to take a look. I probably need to get a few cable extenders.