Cables completed and volume control started
October 2004

I know what you're thinking. "Why the hell isn't this thing done - it's been 9 months!" What can I say? I'm inherently lazy. I dunno - time just got away from me with very little to show for it.
Anyway, I've completed all the wiring. Here you can see all the wires going from the 2 Ultimarc circuit boards up into the underside of the control panel box. It looks like a total rat's nest, but I'm not going to tidy it up with cable ties until I see that it's all working.
And here's a side shot of the wires actually attached to the controls. It is also a total mess, but the wires don't block any of the spinner wheels or anything, so I probably won't do anything to tidy them up. They ain't broke, so I ain't fixin' 'em!
You can probalby also tell that I haven't yet fixed those concealed hinges to the control panel yet. As it will be a total bitch to do it, I'm not screwing them on until everything is working fine. Then again, it's not like I'm going to disconnect everything and start again, so maybe I should screw them on now? I dunno. You can also see I'm using a ruler to prop up the panel. I plan to get something a little more professional but haven't really thought about it.
One annoying thing I just fixed today was that one of the cable bundles (specifically, the one servicing all the extra controls like the mouse buttons, pause, speed up etc) was too short and prevented me from lifting the panel upright to work underneath. This was frustrating, and I've promised myself to never scrimp on cable lengths again. A little bit of soldering and some shrinkwrap and everything's sorted out.
Right now I'm starting work on the volume control. As it stands, I have both the Windows volume controls and the big fat knob on the amplifier to control noise levels. However, rather than either going into Windows itself or opening the front of the cabinet to adjust the amp, I'd rather have a knob on the top of the cabinet from which I can wind the sound down from the current level. Oscar Controls have a NICE PAGE ON DOING EXACTLY THAT, so hopefully that'll be painless. I have the dual-gang logarithmic potentiometer you can see here, along with a snazzy blue knob that matches the predominant colour of my cabinet. I went around a friend's place, as he has a few bits of scrap tin from old power supplies that I needed for a bracket, as well as a vice to shape it with. After I drill a few holes in it I just need to settle my mind on the best spot to mount it. Probably on the top of the whole cabinet, so it's out of the way for the most part. Mind you, I could mount it facing down near the speakers, which might be more sensible.
So I'm sitting down and working out what needs to be wired to what. I'll have to strip the audio leads that go from the sound card to the amplifier to stick on the volume control, as this potentiometer wouldn't be able to handle the power going from the amp to the speakers. It'll be a total pain in the arse, I'm sure, to run the wires from the sound card up to wherever I mount the knob, as the arcade monitor is right where I'd like to stick my head. Ah well, that's what I get for a lack of forethought and planning.

NOTE: I am NOT an electrician. Don't think that I know what I'm talking about when it comes to electricity. I like to think I know what I'm doing but I'm NOT qualified in any way. Reproduce my work AT YOUR OWN RISK.