Friday, June 28, 2013

Shine a little light...

Had a little quality time with the machine again last night so I was able to finish up half the lights. 
The process of wiring the harness is rather slow and to give you some insight in the process, here goes:

1) Starting the process.

I first start by going from the top-most (i.e closest to the player) hardware that needs wiring, and then roughly aligning the cable until it reaches the end of the board (i.e top of playfield).

I then fix the ends with cable clamps.

2) Measuring and roughly estimating groups.

Going from the bottom and up, I group hardware into sections to ease the actual routing of cables. In this case I was using flat-cables so I divided the cable in appropriate groups along the way.

Care is taken to not obstruct any hardware or hinder serviceability, while still maintaining slight esthetics.

This process alone took a good hour to complete.

3) Cutting to length and fixing.

Once that's done, I do another sweep and cut the cable groups in correct lengths and strip them, fasten and solder them in place.
There went 1.5-2 hours worth of time...

I also realized I completely missed the upper level lights so I had to route the cables for them as well. Luckily I had cables to spare (both lights and switches) so it was just a minute or two setback.

4) Tidying up.

Once everything is soldered, I sweep over the playfield once more to tidy things up. I believe I used 30-40 zip-ties for the left side alone during this session.

It's also during this I notice if anything needs to be changed to flow better, such as the cables around the servo on the bracket, for instance.

5) Admire your hard work. 


The left side is now complete, with the exception of the flasher. I have not routed +12V on the playfield yet. It's routed to the playfield, just not around and on it.

The whole process took around 4 hours to complete, which is not bad considering I made the harness design on the fly.
I'll probably design it beforehand 'the next time (tm)'...

Having the hardware completed in the next couple of weeks seems entirely plausible now!

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