Monday morning and I think divorce may be in my wife’s mind. She has not seen me much over the weekend due to hours spent down in me shed.
Firstly on Friday evening I had a good look at the wood and decided on the positioning for the Platter and tonearm. Baz my stepdad brought over the Quads. A 44 pre-amp and a pair of 303 power amps. Bi-amping is definitely on the cards. Unfortunately the power leads were missing the connection plug into the 44 from the 303's so it has been a case of waiting until I arrived at work this morning to have a hunt through the old computer cables that I hoard in boxes for just this kind of emergency.
The mission speakers are floorstander 735's.
Unfortunately, here, one of the cones on one woofer had a split around a inch long. These are of a plastic type material so applying an inch square of gaffer tape over the hole has produced a simple fix to the problem and having connected them up there is no detriment to the sound. The Kefs are now being used as the surround speakers replacing the Aiwa's. The sound is lovely coming from the Yammy amp both through the iPhone, the iPod and through the Sony CD player. I would note that the iPhone (4GS) gives a much clearer, crisper sound than the iPod (Classic) Same MP3's.
The Sony Sounds excellent although no SACD's tried out yet.
Having spent a good part of Saturday morning playing around with the setup I then had the afternoon to start on the wood for the turntable.
Having chosen the positions and measured up the heights and distances the drilling cutting sanding and general bodging began. An afternoon/evening later and the bearing and tonearm support were in place.
More cutting sanding and measuring had the Sub-platter and then the platter spinning freely in the bearing.
Sunday morning and I was attentative to my wife. I tidied up the kitchen following the Champions League final party the night before, I made her a cup of coffee, I asked her what SHE wanted to do that day. She told me to **** off and get down the shed and play with my record player.
After a little more tweeking and fine sanding I had the platter spinning perfectly. I then started on the motor housing.
The Volcano whilst big was not large enough to fit the motor and support inside so I had to make a decision. I decided that as it needed to be quite close to the platter I would have it protruding out of one side. More measuring then sawing, cutting, cutting some more, swearing, cutting, chiselling, hacking, smashing, swearing even more and finally one last bit of sawing had the bottom half of the hardest bit of wood I have ever had to cut fell away. It did not help that it was a totally un-uniform shape I didn't want to put it in a vice because I didn't want to ruin any of the features. The sides are not totally joined and again I was fearful of damaging these. Honestly I attacked this thing with two different hand saws, a jig saw a circular saw and then a hammer and chisels.
Eventually I had a piece left that I could use and the TT gods must have been looking down on me because putting it down on the worktop had it sitting perfectly flat with no rocking whatsoever. Result!!
I cut away a section in the side and fitted the motor housing in place. It was then offered up against the main section. The motor spindle(?)(the bit the belt goes around) sat in a perfect alignment with the sub-platter, another result.
The circuit board and wiring sit snuggly in the tube of the Volcano with the power lead and switch lead having enough length to pass out under a cut that I had made at the base. Clearly this was an intentional gap and not a botch due to the aforementioned cutting/sawing/swearing etc etc.
So there it was, a freely spinning platter, a motor in place, a belt fitted on to check alignment, a power lead sitting so invitingly close to an empty socket...
I had to do it. The switch wasn't in its place but no bare wires were out. I plugged it in and tentitively reached for the switch. Turned it on and the platter immediately started spinning. IT'S ALIVE!!!! I'd like to say now that as I did this the theme music to Apocolypse Now was playing on the CD player......
but I cant, it had been playing earlier on and at the time I thought what a great piece of music to have when I see if it runs but it was a passing thought
The switching on for the first time was however one of those moments. A big grin moment, the sort of moment when you look at what you have done and are happy