Week 163 (Commissioning the API Vision)

Nearly three months ago we chose the week of February 14th as the date for commissioning our API Vision console.  And every day since then had been a sprint to get ready for that date.  Along the way we hit innumerable obstacles, and every time we needed a do-over, we’d have to redouble our efforts to make that schedule.  But on February 14th, we had enough pieces in place to begin the process we’d been anticipating for literally years.  After one last look at the holes in our Control Room,

it was time to take off the wrap and see the beast:

We got the legs on:

Took our positions:

And began to rotate:

ea–sy!

EA–SY!

and DOWN!

With the major physical risks now behind us, it was time to assess how we did on measuring our holes, cutting our cables, and generally preparing for the commissioning.

Almost immediately, Team API are executing their game plan, getting the right components into the right places in the right order, starting with these large green circuitboards:

One of my favorite components in the Vision console: it’s massive copper bus bar:

Soon the faders are coming out of their individual protective pouches and they are installed into the console:

Many tasks quickly become team efforts:

The next day power is up:

And soon modules are installed and powered up:

And more modules:

Meanwhile, our wiring team begins to finalize the interfaces between our infrastructure and the API cabling:

Truth be told, we cut our cables way too long, but it is always better to be too long than too short in situations like this.

While that’s happening in the Control Room, our floor finishing team freshens up the Music Room with its 5th coat of Tung Oil:

Late that evening, with all the EQs and other modules installed, audio testing begins:

While this process is by no means “plug and play”, API’s wealth of experience and deep technical ability help us to surmount problems we never even knew existed.  Hard days, long nights, a few testy moments here and there, but in the end, API delivers as promised, and we are a team:

API Vision Commissioning Team for Manifold Recording: Thom, Dan, Richard, Bowie, Ian, Radovan, Tom

As the final step in the commissioning process, Professor Dan Pfeiffer ( College of Mass Communication, Middle Tennessee State University) takes Chief Engineer Ian Schreier through the finer points of the Vision Console:

Dan’s on-site presence means not only answering questions, but providing a deeper understanding that will help us get up to speed quickly:

And there you have it—the worlds newest API Vision Console:

Outside, work continues on the reflecting pools:

the West Patio:

And, of course, the glass diffusors:

Yes, virtually every piece of wood you see in this shop is either a part of, or supporting, or becoming the glass diffusors:

So many pieces, yet also so many cuts:

So many cuts:

And more pieces, here drying from an application of lacquer:

Soon!

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