Happy new year! The only photogenic thing that happened this week was the arrival of the roof fans for the new ventilation system. There are two of them. They are big.

This week, the sound guys hung two of the four main downstairs speaker clusters, plus the under-balcony fills. They would have installed the other two as well, but we're waiting for a mounting bracket to be welded to the front of the dj platform, and that's running late because one of the welders is sick, and the other landed himself in the hospital somehow. Thankfully not on this job...

One of the bathrooms looks to be almost completely tiled; but I think this is one of those situations where the first 90% is done, and only the second 90% is left. I expect that most of the work will be putting in the grout, and the tiles in hard-to-reach places.

The lines for the soda guns are partly installed. For bars, bulk soda and juice come in big cardboard boxes, with a bag of concentrate inside. Water and carbonation are added by the juice gun itself. These boxes will live on shelves in a back room, and be pumped out to the guns at each of the three bars. So there's a couple hundred feet of plastic tubing that needs to wind its way along the ceiling. It's a single three inch bundle that has ten tubes inside it.

The juice boxes are stored warm; the way the drinks get cold is that, at the end of their journey, the tubes pass through a flat plate that sits at the bottom of the ice bin at the bar, chilling it just before it comes out the nozzle. Carbonation is also added late in the game, by a device that pumps it full of CO2.

Beer will travel through a separate bundle of tubes. It will be the same basic kind of setup, except that beer doesn't come from concentrate, and can't be allowed to get warm once it has been unsealed. So the kegs will live inside the walk-in refrigerator, and the tubes themselves will be chilled, by one of the tubes in the bundle having refrigerant in it (the aforementioned Glycol system.)

This system uses a lot of CO2, since it's used not only for carbonating the sodas, but it's also what pushes the liquids through the tubes. Another cool thing about our setup is that we won't need to haul heavy gas canisters around: we have one giant tank that can be filled from the street: the soda guys come by and just plug their truck into the building.

So the webcam was offline last night. Because someone broke in and stole it. It was this guy:

We printed out a bunch of copies of that picture, captioned with ``GOTCHA! LOSER'' and plastered the front of the building with them. They weren't all torn down the next day, so we figure the doofus didn't actually see them. (There's no chance he'll ever be caught, so we figured the least we could do is give him a brief moment of panic.) The cops thought the whole thing was really funny. I asked if I could take their picture, but they said no, and started acting really nervous. Which was especially funny, as they were standing in front of the (new) webcam at the time.

Other than that, nothing too exciting this week:

The roof fans for the ventilation system have been wired up, so now we've actually been able to see the ductwork in action. It sounds like a jet engine. It's really insanely loud. They tell me that things will get better after they adjust things, e.g., the fan blades aren't yet balanced, so they are wobbling all over the place as they turn. We're also having the electricians put a variable-speed control on the motors so that we can have it on at less than full blast, since building codes forced us to build way more ventilation than we need or will ever want to use.

The other ceiling penetrations (for the convection-driven roof fans that were here before) have been sealed up, too. We didn't remove the old roof fans, but instead, just stuffed them with a foot of insulation and re-roofed right beneath them. The idea here is that, if we were to tear the old vents off the roof, we'd be making and patching a new hole, and we'd be chasing down roof leaks for the next six months. Whereas if we just close up the hole without taking the vents off the outside, we won't introduce any new leaks.

Tile in the bathroom is progressing. The low-level architectural lighting above the bars has been installed. It sounds like the plumbers are completely done, except for hooking up the new water heater (which hasn't arrived yet) and actually bolting down the toilets (which they can't do until the tilers are done.)

The concrete subwoofer bunker is mostly done (the floor and walls are in, but the roof isn't yet.) This is an enclosure under the stage made of cinderblocks that have been filled with concrete that sits around the subs. Since the subs are under the stage, it's important that they push all their engergy out the front, instead of up and to the back, because if they make the stage vibrate, then the vibrations will travel up the mic stands and cause feedback.

The front pair of main downstairs speakers are also now in place. The steel guys welded up a pair of tilted shelves for them to sit on. The speakers are actually bolted to this shelf, but since it's a bad idea to bolt speakers to structural steel (because of vibration) they're bolted via these cool little rubber thingies: basically it's a rubber block that has a pair of bolts embedded into it. The rubber is formed around them, so the bolts can't pull out, but the two bolts aren't in direct contact with each other. So one end goes into the shelf, and one end into the speaker.