Sunday, June 04, 2006

Stage 10: Hammer Time

Having now fully resigned ourselves to either having this giant arcade cabinet reside permanently in our front yard or having to smash it into smaller pieces so we could drag it into the house, Cee and I tracked down a couple of hammers and began plotting our task, as the artist's rendition at left illustrates.

Cee's brother Jamie soon appeared on the scene, and was generally delighted by the state of the cabinet, the level of filth and exhaustion being exuded by his brother and myself and also by our ingenious plan to hammer the bejesus out of this thing until it obeyed our demands to become capable of being stored in the spare room.

A quick peek into the trap-door on the back of the cabinet was kind of like cavemen looking inside the ribcage of a wildebeast for the first time: things were connected every which way, some with obvious purpose, some with none. But like North American natives, we pledged to somehow use every part of this carcass before us, with nothing left to waste. Presuming, of course, we could figure out how to get it apart.

Determining where are the bolts were was a frustrating process, especially when it was determined that this thing wasn't bolted together at all. It seems the whole monstrous affair was dowled together via a series of precision drilled interlocking pegs and holes. You have to hand it to those hippies in the 80s, they sure knew how to build shit.

With the constant rain now building into pools atop the green tarp, we began to gingerly hammer the sides off this beast. Ideally we'd just knock the pegs loose and we could effortlessly disassemble it before carting it inside.

The hammering actually went fairly well all things considered. I had anticipated some catostrophic hammer blows resulting in splintered MDF, but slowly but surely we managed to loosen one entire side from the cabinet.

Numerous wires were attached in all manners of ways to both sides, the CPU and the monitor. Having no idea what any of these wires did and still unsure if the monitor even worked, we hastily detached what we could as fast as we could and began shuttling the pieces inside the house.

Blow by blow, we rained hammer strikes down upon the felled cabinet as often as the rain itself poured down upon us. Soon we had the thing down to its bare guts, and Cee took a moment to lord his glory over the now desiccated machine, as pictured at right. After some crafty use of my new ratchet set, we managed to detach the monitor from the frame and haul the last few body parts inside to relative dryness.

All told only one "boo-boo": a small tearing of MDF where the pegs refused to yield. Also, the monitor's transformer had become detached and the first worries I had about using the monolithic display began to form in my cranium.

So at last, the two cabs were both secured within Castle Allan Street, one in its native form and the other a pangeatic mass of protopieces and potential.

With all the material I would need to get the basic cabinet up and running, I was now free to do some more cerebral work: namely, researching how best to utilize this ancient 25" arcade monitor without killing myself or burning Allan Street to ashes.


Anonymous Drake said...

"...burning Allan Street to ashes."

I worry I live too close to you now...

9:48 PM  
Blogger Speedbag said...

I as well fear the impending blaze! Please tell us which day this inferno will commence so I can prepare!

4:20 PM  

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