Posted on May 28, 2003
The basic idea was to place a complete computer inside a toy/model of the Millenium Falcon. I had several items that I decided I must have:
All components had to fit inside...
all peripherals had to plug into the outside of the toy/model
just like a real computer.
The basic toy/model had to be painted accurately, within reason. This meant researching the models used in the movies and making a "best guess" as to the colors and spacing of some parts.
The system must have a unique power light. This was accomplished via a special LED that flashes and fades through all the primary colors of light (red, green, and blue in a single LED)
Through one of the "holes" in the hull, you must be able to see the inner workings of a real hard drive, preferably accented with blue electrical "sparks" when there was drive activity.
It had to have hard drive activity lights placed into the front "headlights" of the Falcon.
Working engine lights... need I say more?
It had to have adequate cooling...
First, I had to acquire the basic body. Kenner used to make a toy of the ship for the action figures many years ago. Thanks to ebay, I was able to get one of these. It wasn't in the best condition (the plastic was yellowed from age) but that's OK.
Nothing like a good bath, and after over 20 years, this toy certainly needed one! Of course, this also helped get rid of the stickers and adhesive... but that was just coincidence...
Here, I glued the lower hatch onto the main body. For my needs, I need it closed all the time. Also, I glued the two halves of the main gun together. Unlike the toy, my ship won't be able to rotate it's laser cannon. That's OK... I have lots of other surprises in store that will make up for the lack of a rotating laser cannon.
Now the first of several scary parts. I actually opened the hard drive to install a window. You might have heard of crazy people who have actually opened their hard drives to install a see-through window. Yup, I'm one of them now. Basically, this entails opening the hard drive, cutting a hole in the case for the window, installing a nice bright LED inside, and closing it up while not getting a single particle of dust inside. The difference for me was that due to space limitations, I had to use a laptop hard drive... not much space there... Oh, the bright blue LED I installed in the drive also lights up whenever there is hard-drive activity on that IDE bus.
Probably the right time to test it to make sure it works. Success! I was a little shocked, but happy!