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Archive for 2012

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Dec 21

Christmas Card 2012

Category: Art,Journal

And here it is this year’s Christmas card. Tried for a 50’s style illustration this year. Enjoy!

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Dec 09

Christmas time of year

Category: Journal

The Mackhouse is all full of Christmas and this weekend was no exception. I was a nice relaxing weekend for the most part cept the boys drove us a little crazy, for some reason they just seem to be mis-behaving lately.

It was strange today as it snowed so we went from doing some yard work yesterday and then snow shoveling today. Aside from the work though we enjoyed decorating a ginger bread house, gift shopping and the Club Penguin staff party for the kids. As always the boys love this every year so a big thanks to all those who made it happen. This year it was face painting, and cookie decorating and cupcakes, all followed by Tristan burning his tongue on this hot chocolate Рyep Tintin is call hot for a reason.

Now it’s a Christmas get together for my team at work, the staff party, Christmas concerts, more gift shopping, baking, and then the in-laws start to arrive. Going to get busy, busy, busy.

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Dec 03

Disney Vacation

Category: Journal

Whew after being back for a week and finally being able to sit down and view the all the pictures from the trip to Disneyland we are ready to give you this post. Yes that is right the Mackhouse went to Disneyland! We ended up with amazing deals on flights (thanks Westjet for your new direct flight to LA), cashed in our travel points and made use of being employees of the mouse. We even managed to keep it all a secret until waiting at the gate in Kelowna.

It was an awesome trip that I am sure will fill us with memories for a long time. The boys where amazing little troopers and where able to go all day walking to and from the parks (about a 15 min walk), being up early and staying up till 10 almost every night. Un-fortunately Tristan fought a really bad cold for the first 4 days but still went on and held in there.

We basically spent all 7 days in the parks and took in almost everything at least everything that we could or the boys would allow (Pirates was a little too scary). Highlights for Tristan were basically all the roller coasters, of which he did Space Mountain. For Rhys it was Astro Blasters (a Buzz Lightyear ride) and It’s a small world, which I must admit was pretty cool all done up for Christmas. Speaking of Christmas it really made it special to be their when everything was all themed and decorated for the season right down to it snowing after the fireworks. Cars land was really really cool especially at night with all the neon it was amazing to see how well the replicated the movie, and the Radiator Racers ride was a lot of fun cept for almost 3hr wait times but fortunately we had a fast pass.

We took only one day to do anything else than visit the parks but we did take in a visit to Disneyland first thing in the morning before heading to Huntington Beach. The day was supposed to be the warmest of the entire week with hitting 28 degrees but a super thick fog rolled in that morning and never really burned off so we nearly froze. This did lead to fish and chips on the pier and hot chocolate on the beach, but didn’t keep the boys from playing in the sand and surf. I have to say it is amazing how that sand gets into everything even when getting home the bath tub still had sand in it.

I do wish as always that I had taken more pictures, I always find it hard to know what is the best to take pictures of. However what you see below captures a lot of the fun we had.

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Nov 16

7 Years!!

Category: Journal

Happy 7 years to the Mackhouse blog!!!

Yep it has been 7 years and I am not even sure if anyone is following anymore. Something we need to fix so stay tuned things will get better and we will be back on top of this.

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Nov 11

Cabinet Hardware Assembly

Category: Journal,Mini Mame

The cabinet is completely painted and is looking really good. I do as I had mentioned earlier wished I had used bondo instead of wood filler but oh well things still look good and really it is only me that notices. Unfortunately I learned the best way to get a nice glossy look on a cabinet on this is to paint it all flat black which ensures a nice even surface then give it up to 5 passes with clear coat. Too bad I didnt know this before hand, funny how you discover these things after the fact.

I spent all Friday assembling the hardware etc. Was a great use of a day off. Had my fingers crossed a little when I powered it all up but Success!! Everything worked perfectly. Now it is onto configuring all the mame software, emulators and Maximus arcade which I am using for the frontend. Below is pictures of the progress. Looking forward to when I get all the art decals on the sides, control board and the marquee. Anyone out there want to donate their time and do some artwork for me?

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Nov 04

Painting The Cab In Progress

Category: Journal,Mini Mame

Just another quick update on the Cabinet progress. I have been spending the last week applying the primer coat making sure it is all nice and even. Then it was onto sanding the whole thing down to make it nice and smooth for the coat of paint. It has been a slow process as I wait for each coat to dry. I have to say now that I am so close to getting to putting all the hardware together I am getting impatient but excited.

Below you will see the rear door and control panel primed and sanded and the main cabinet with it’s first coat of paint.

Next steps:

  • finish¬†painting
  • wet sand everything to get it super glossy and smooth
  • install all buttons
  • install the door
  • mount the Mother Board
  • mount the HDD
  • connect everything
  • hold breath

 

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Oct 21

Mackhouse Arcade Progress!!!

Category: Journal,Mini Mame

Okay so it has been a really long time since we have updated anything on this blog. Darn facebook!!! Sorry about the lack of updates or info or anything for that matter. That being said I have over the past few weeks been back at the mini mame project.

Sadly I have lost a few pictures along the way so it will feel like I jumped a step here. Last we left off I had the cardboard prototype all put together. Since then I bought ¬†sheet of 1/2″ MDF and an awesomely old table saw which weighs a ton as it is all cast iron. It has lasted some 50+ years and will probably last some about that much more although it is insanely heavy and big. I can tell you there are a lot of other tools I would love to have for this project (band saw, fixed belt sander, etc) but I have had to improvise. I manage to cut out all the pieces with just the table saw and a jig-saw and the help of many helpful new clamps (seriously I think this project is just an excuse to buy more tools). ¬†After this I placed in all the bracing supports and then dry fitted everything to see if it would all fit.¬†Luckily¬†everything seemed to be all right and the main issues where in figuring out how to mount the external usb’s, these will allow for external keyboards, mices and game controllers.

 

After all this was time to layout the joystick and buttons which I did in cardboard then tested with the hardware. Everything worked swimingly, so with the control board in place it was time to drill, I also drilled extra buttons on the side of the cabinet and under the main control board these will allow for player select and pinball games. Feeling comfortable with everything it was time to glue and assemble everything together (fingers crossed). I learned in this process to take one pieces at a time I was excited to get it all in place in one sitting but highly recommend taking your time, and you can never have enough clamps. Next up was figuring out how the monitor would be mounted. This took some time and though but in the end was a lot simpler than I was¬†originally¬†planning as seen in the pictures. Pleased with everything I am now just filling in some nail holes and sanding the cabinet down in prep for the primer and paint. On the hardware side I had now got my monitor and marquee lighting running off the PSU, very exictied about this as one of my goals was to have only one power cord. More on this later. Below are pics on the final glued together cabinet. Now off to paint…

  

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Jan 02

Happy New Year

Category: Journal

Happy New Year to you all. 2011 is now over and we are looking forward to the year 2012 and all it has to bring. It seems that 2011 was year as far as the world goes not that great. Thankfully we are blessed to live in an area of the world that is largely un-touched by these things and have a wonderful family which to built memories with.

This blog as you all know has been neglected and with the new year it is time to get it back on track and updated. Last we left off we were heading into May with the celebrations of Rhys and my birthday. From this Naomi headed down to Florida for a work conference and upon her return we headed off on our first family vacation to the coast. We had a great time showing the boys Vancouver and the island for the first time with visits to Salt Spring island and Tofino traveling on several ferries along the way. Shortly after Naomi headed down to San Francisco for some training and a little time with here sister. Much of our summer was spent lazing by pools and the lake and finishing up the landscaping in the yard. Following shortly after Tristan headed off to school for the first time and our house got a new facelift of fresh paint and new windows. Naomi’s with a really yummy meal at a fancy restaurant and my first taste of rabbit stew (yum I can still taste it!). I had a quick trip down to LA for work and then to a conference in San Antonio. Sadly we were all hit hard with colds and flus at the tail end of fall and hopefully that is all behind us now. Finishing off this year was a trip to Edmonton for Christmas.

That is the quick re-cap of the year and below are the photos over the past months. Hope you all enjoy!

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