Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Nov 21 - Sometimes We Feel Like This

My lord but we're all sick and tired of hearing about the GameCube Portable project! It's become a sort of Foreign Legion Deathmarch with a climb up Mt. Everest as a cool-down. It is taking forever to make progress, and it doesn't help that we keeping taking 9 steps back every time we take 1 step forward.

But we are in too deep to stop. We've stopped counting the money we've spent on parts and supplies. We've never counted the hours we've spent on false starts and mistakes. Quite simply, we've come too far to quit.

After refreshing my memory about how to calculate resistance on a circuit, I tried wiring up a new LED and the required resistors (I never did visit the store for new supplies, but just used stuff we had lying around the workshop). Obviously I was screwing things up because I couldn't seem to make it work. Either an LED would blow out from too much voltage or it would not glow at all because there was too much resistance. I quickly came to realize I was getting too confused to make this work.

Luck came calling (likely She was on her somewhere else and took a shortcut through our workshop) when I magically found the original (broken) LED and resistor sitting on the workbench - in exactly the placed we looked yesterday. While the LED was still viable, I had no idea if the resistor would work. It was a tad scorched and the lead wire on one end had broken off.

With a strong magnifying glass and a shaky right hand, I soldered a new wire onto the end of the resistor. I expected nothing and had nothing to lose, but the multimeter show that (1) the part still worked and (2) my calculations for a replacement resistor were way off! Afterwards I was able to solder in the LED and add the whole mess back into the motherboard. As expected, everything was back to normal and we had solve one problem!

It was good progress and I was happy to call JediBoy to come have a look. Flushed with success, we decided to have a look-see at the broken trigger. Step 1 would be to somehow remove the mechanism from its epoxy tomb inside the case. This proved easier than we thought. Using a Dremel and some dental picks, we removed enough epoxy to gingerly pull the trigger free and open its mechanism.

We decided that was enough progress for one evening. There would be plenty of time in the coming days to screw things up again. For now, we would feel good about the project.


David said...

Have you made the boy watch Fitzcarraldo yet? Maybe The Mosquito Coast to follow up? It might give him (and you) some insight into the mania. Gallipoli, or any "over the top at any cost" movie about WWI would be good too.

Keep humming It's a Long Way to Tipperary, it'll keep him wondering. And worrying.

We're all worried, you crazy bastard you.

Crazylegs said...

Mosquito Coast pretty much nails it. But in terms of frustating twists and turns, Scorcese's underrated "After Hours" comes the closest.

I may be crazy, but the monster will LIVE!!!