Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The TKs remote for "On and Off the Field"

Tales of a chief engineer
Part 5402: The TK's remote emergency.

The sports dept had been doing a live remote from TKs (a bar down the road on White Street) for a while, and we were getting ready to do a remote test, when we got a call.

"The Marantz isn't powering up!"

I asked them to check a few things... plug... switch... outlet... there's a black button on the back... twist it off and look inside.

"It looks like a fuse", he said.

"Ok... is the wire inside broken?"


"I'll be right there." And in a flash, I was tearing down the road in my 1976 forest green Plymouth Volare.
I ran inside and looked at the Marantz remote transmitter. The fuse was bad alright... but for some reason, my parts box didn't have the right kind of fuses. None of them would fit.

"We go on in 5 minutes, can you fix it?" he asked.

"I'll see what I can do". and I ran out to my car, holding the busted fuse.

I didn't have time to run to RatShack... On gut instinct, I ripped open the fuse panel to the Volare. Just my luck, the fuses were identical in shape (that's all I cared about at that point).

I tried to figure out what electrical system I least cared about... I think I took the blower fuse or the dashboard light fuse... and I ran back in. The little remote transmitter blinked back on with one minute to go... and the remote was saved.

Incidentally, my next car - a Dodge Colt did not have the same kind of fuses... so if that happened later on... I would have had to wrap tin foil around the busted fuse to make the contact.

By the way... bypassing fuses with tin foil is not a 'best practices' approach to electrical troubleshooting. I just thought I'd put that disclaimer in there... but you gotta do what you gotta to sometimes... and do the right repair after the broadcast... or after you see smoke... whichever comes first.



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