Data Driven

Having spent most of yesterday procrastinating, designing and shopping, today I sprang back into action and disassembled panel P1 along with several top corner panels. No easy task!

I also marked five aluminum corner panels and dropped them off at Archers Precision. In less than two hours, Casey had sheared them all to size. So now when I reinstall them, the overlapping lower edges will line up nicely along both sides. One of those panels was mis-cut by Metal Supermarkets. The rest just needed trimming because of they way they overlap. The metal thickness is 1/16″, so a few needed to be trimmed by a multiple of 1/16″ to allow for “stacking.”

Meanwhile, I installed the Ethernet inlet jack and its waterproof gland. Here are the cable-side parts before assembly.

And here’s the result. I love that the rubber grommet is even red. The cable is a little difficult to remove from the jack, however.

Inside, I had to modify some insulation and then drill several new holes in various metal ribs and panels. I have to wait for my 1-inch rubber grommets and the two 20-foot Cat6 cables to arrive before I can finish this task.

But basically, this Ethernet inlet is now connected to my Apple AirPort Extreme, which acts like a hub with three jacks.

The first cable feeds my Apple TV. This means I can run ScenarioTV from my media server in HD, and without the glitches inherent over Wi-Fi.The second cable will feed the RETROcam, which I mounted upside-down in the rear ceiling panel (T6), facing forward. This camera is now operational as a part of our home security system. It acts as a sentry to detect any intruders who may happen to beam aboard without authorization.

The third cable will feed an Ethernet jack installed in a rear wall panel on the driver’s side (D6). I’ll be able to plug my 5K iMac or a MacBook Pro into that for working at the table. That jack will be in a two-gang wall plate along with a 120V outlet. The data side may have a second Ethernet jack, but most likely a cable jack for future expansion.

And finally, I discovered and ordered a 16-inch plastic model kit for the Proteus submarine from the 1966 sci-fi classic Fantastic Voyage. You may remember from my earliest posts that the RETROvan’s design is inspired in part by that movie. So this will be another fun display piece.

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