Greetings from the land of studio construction!
Here are some photos from the construction of KUSP’s new on-air studio — the last step of Upgrade 2011.
The last on-air break for our old equipment was at the end of Your Call with Rose Aguilar on Wednesday, January 11. Morning Host Jim Sintetos did the honors, bringing down the curtain on a studio configuration that had stayed pretty much the same for the past fifteen years.
We moved on-air operations across the hall to Production Studio 1 over the course of the next few hours, in time for Wes Sims to host Marketplace and All Things Considered from the temporary set-up. Here’s one of Wes’ All Things Considered breaks on Wednesday afternoon.
As soon as we were up and running in Production 1 our construction brigade started tearing out the old on-air gear. When we removed the audio mixing console we were astounded by how much stuff had gotten stuck under it over the last decade and a half!
Among the finds were a KUSP program schedule from 1997 — the year this equipment was installed — and a pledge form we lost during the Spring 2009 pledge drive! Happily, the member who made the lost pledge came through again later on that same year.
In what seemed like hardly any time at all, the equipment was pulled out and the recyclable materials sorted into piles.
Here the interview microphones (which we will keep using) are resting next to some of the hundreds of feet of analog audio cable that we no longer need.
We dismantled the cabinetry and pulled up the worn-out carpet — and were reminded that, once upon a time, people were permitted to smoke in the on-air studio! The carpet pad never lies. Once we got all the floor covering out of there the odor dissipated fairly quickly. Our carpet installers fixed up a few problems with the floor and applied the most environmentally-friendly adhesive we could find.
Our new carpet, selected with help from Lorri Kershner Design, went down next. The transformation was amazing.
This morning, the new studio furniture arrived, custom designed for KUSP by cabinetmaker and host of It Takes All Kinds, Bruce Larsen. The first puzzle was to figure out how all the pieces fit together; a challenge successfully met by Bruce and KUSP Lifetime Member Mac Hartley, pictured here.
While Mac and Bruce assembled the furniture, KUSP Chief Engineer Brant Herrett attended to the studio plumbing — literally. Though these plastic pipes will pass the high-speed Ethernet cables that connect the on-air studio’s equipment to the rest of the station.
After a few hours, Mac and Bruce got all the pieces correctly oriented, level, plumb, and square. While it appears that Mac is engaged in a religious observance, he is in fact holding two sections of the furniture together while Bruce (not visible) puts in the requisite fasteners from the other side…
On the way out the door tonight, Bruce said we were past Step 5 of the project. I’m glad someone is keeping track. Next we assemble more cabinetry and install the mounts for the various computer screens that will let our on-air staff know what’s going on. Stay tuned…