I kind of can’t believe this part actually worked.

You may remember I mentioned buying a monitor on eBay, and that I want to make integrate it into the old typewriter.

Here’s the eBay picture. I didn’t want take any before pictures, so this will have to do.

Boring, isn't it?



As it sat, it was 3 3/8″ thick and would have looked awful, so I decided to rip it all apart into it’s constituent elements.

I'm down to 3 circuit boards and the panel

Now, the monitor is about 5/8 inch thick, and it will look much much better when I get it attached to the typewriter.

I want it to end up looking something like this.

Something like that.



Now, I plan on making a new case for the monitor and mounting it on hinges.

Originally, of course, all of those circuits were stacked up on the back of the monitor.  I want to put those down further so the monitor remains as thing as possible — almost like paper.

There was one problem.

I’m pointing to the place where a wiring harness goes into the back of the model. it extended all of four inches down and was going to muck up my plan to put the circuits down at the back of the typewriter in a nice clean black case.

This left me with a tough choice. I could either reconfigure my vision for this project, or find some way to extend the wires.

I’m sorry I don’t have any process pictures here, but I ended up deciding to extend each of the wires.

So I found a circuit board with paired holes, soldered the lead just before the plastic input piece into the circuit board, then soldering an extension wire out. Then I had another board to input the extension wire and then solder the other end of the wiring harness in there.

Maybe a picture can explain this better…

I call it "Son of FrankenCircuit."

You can see the plastic input bracket or wiring harness  on both sides, and then the two thin plastic circuit boards in between.

Now, as I’m doing this, I’m thinking that I’m pretty much a moron. That having the circuit boards mounted lower on the project is not that big of a deal.

I knew that I bought a used monitor because I would invalidate the warranty as soon as I opened the box. But I’m still thinking that I wasted my money.

This isn’t amazing circuitry work. It’s just pain staking. I had to cut one wire at a time and then go through four solders, and then move on to the next wire. I was terrified that if I cut more than one wire at a time I would lose track  and mess everything up.

In all there were 28 wires and 112 solder joints.

Here’s a picture of half of those….

There are way too many man hours into this, and it's only half.

Here’s another point I find in every project I make. There’s always one little detail I”m not willing to compromise on. In this case, it was the placement of the monitor circuitry. I get maniacal about the bottom of door jambs when I’m installing hardwood floors and I get way overzealous when it comes to patching and sanding drywall joints. I just want everything to be the way I want it to be on these projects, and end up spending way  too many hours on superflous details.

But in this case, I was worried that I had also wasted my money on this monitor.

I finally make the last solder and let it cool, and then rush down stairs to plug everything in and see if it worked. I was careful not to break any solder joints this time.

To my shock, my disbelief, and my amazement at my own abilities, I got this…

It worked! I shit you not.

I guess this project has paid off somewhat. I made 112 solders and got it right on the first try.

I was so excited that this all worked, I was beyond giddy. You should seriously hear the voice message I left my girlfriend. I sound like a little girl who just got her pony.

So! The typewriter part is 99% finished. I still have to get some of those bastardly little feather contacts into just the right spot. And most of the time, when I fix one, the one next to it gets knocked out of line.

That means, with the monitors wires extended, I have to fabricate the new frame and find a way to attach it to the body of the typewriter. Then I’m going to have to connect all the wiring, make black wire looms for anything that’s gangly and sticking out, and make an enclosure so that all of the circuitry is concealed.

I’m finally starting to get to the point where I can see all of the different elements of my vision coming together, and I can’t wait.