This was a fun project. The client provided us with a real gramophone player… and wanted us to play music when the crank was rotated. 

We did some conversion work: a metal “flag” was added to the crank handle shaft, and an inductive (non contacting) server detects when the handle is rotated. A motor, mounted on a custom ‘spider’ that we produced on our water jet cutter replaced the mechanical device that used to drive the disk platter. A QS6212 was added, with a small speaker that was located into the base of the beautiful metal horn. A little programming later the device was working as we wanted it to: a visitor cranks the handle a few times, the QS unit start the motor and runs, sequentially, one of ten pieces of music to make sure that visitors are not likely to hear the same track all the time. Staff prefers that too…

We put ten tracks on the unit. Music can be changed or added by just modifying the main QuickSilver media drive, which has a folder for each exhibit’s media. QuickSilver takes care of the rest using the wireless interface. Of course if the docent has a preferred track they can trigger that using their phone or another user interface device that is suitably programmed.

All the original internal mechanism was saved and returned to the client should they ever want to restore it back to its original glory.