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About Varied / Professional Senior Member Ranger Ricardo58/Male/United States Groups :iconteambotanix: TeamBotanix
Encyclopedia Botanica
Recent Activity
Deviant for 11 Years
15 Month Premium Membership
Statistics 4,402 Deviations 87,191 Comments 111,658 Pageviews

Newest Deviations

These are the most recent additions to my gallery. Feel free to take all the time you want exploring the vast collection of art which I have submitted to dA as well as the huge collection of fine work from the many fellow deviants I have encountered and added to my favourites and watch. I am thanking you in advance.

Random Favourites

deviation in storage by SuperSnappz
deviation in storage by SuperSnappz

Here we have a random sampling of favourite artworks chosen for their artistic excellence rather than technical perfection. Many styles of art are chosen from the hundreds of wonderful friends and loyal watchers here on dA, as well as works visited during random browsing sessions.

There are over 16,840 images in the Favourites Gallery, a little bit of something interesting and enjoyable for everyone. Artworks are arranged in folders by topic of interest, including photographs, 3D renders, traditional art and literature. If you like them be sure to post a comment or give a fave to the artist. Be sure to visit them. Enjoy!

Random from Bolivia

Viva Bolivia! This wonderful and diverse country in South America is home to many Andean people, aboundant life, and the Charango. It is a place of high snow covered peaks and lush steamy lowland jungle.

This collection of wonderful artwork is only a small part of the vast Favourites Gallery here at the Slow Dog's Place. Please visit the Favourites Gallery to see the entire collection in greater detail.

Quispe Torrez Professional Charango hecho en el Alto, Bolivia.


slowdog294 has started a donation pool!
1,505 / 1,000,000

The 1,000,000 point donation drive is now open. First to donate and get things started is my fellow TPO enthusiest, David Irwin, from Ashland, Virginia, also known on dA as Passacaglia28. Thanks, Dave, for getting the ball rolling!


New devID by Passacaglia28

St. Anne's Church by Passacaglia28Mongomery House by Passacaglia28
York House by Passacaglia28M. P. Moller 2-20 Pipe Organ 6 by Passacaglia28

The Slow Dog wants to give back to dA what has been given to him, the pleasure of great art. Loyal patrons and wonderful friends who have enjoyed his art for over six years are owed many thanks. Words are not enough. He must do more.

One Million Points

To that end, a donation pool has been set up to collect a massive amount of dA points, to be given to various deviants as contest prizes and awards of artistic merit. One million points are to be collected before the contests begin. We are talking about major awards and prizes here.

Support Points Stamp by bigfunkychikenPoints by QuidxProxQuo
no points for llamas stamp by izka197
Points Stamp by ERHBuggyPLEASE DONATE POINTS stamp by KawaiiLizzie

A lofty goal. One million points. Not for my use, instead, to award all my fellow deviants so they can get subscriptions and receive their favourite deviantSTUFF. This is a long term project, so there will be no time limit. However, when the bar hits one million, the contests will begin. Here is a teaser...

:bulletblue: Best 3D TPO Render

:bulletblue: Best Clothed BBW Render

:bulletblue: Best Alien Planetscape

:bulletblue: Best Windows Desktop Wallpaper

:bulletblue: Best Artistic Nude BBW Photo

And so on...

Prizes and rules to be announced at the start of the contests, which will accept new deviations beginning on each contest start date. Older devs will not qualify.

deviantART Points Wallpaper by atty12

Thank you in advance for your generous donation. It shows that you too believe in giving back to the community what it has given you. Blessings and good karma be.

Thanks by tRiBaLmArKiNgS

You must be logged in to donate.

Public Relations on deviantART

:heart::iconshinyheartplz:dA Heroes Stamp by BrigetteMora:iconshinyheartplz::heart:
Artwork by the original dA Hero

Ricardo on Community Spirit

It is a fine community we have here on dA, made up of a gajillion kinds of folks with a wide scope of interests, tastes, and styles. The internet has turned the world into a small village where people can bridge the barriers of language, culture, race, sex, or any other profound or urgent matter of humankind, all within a social environment which encourages the use of artistic means to achieve results. To that end, try to observe some common sense etiquette while moseying around in the Halls of Walnut Hill...

Rules of Engagement

:bulletred:~ Be kind to your fellow deviants, no matter what.
:bulletred:~ Extend that kindness to me and I will do likewise.
:bulletred:~ Never post destructive or bullying comments.
:bulletred:~ Please do not bring personal drama to my pages.
:bulletred:~ This account is free of politics and religion.
:bulletred:~ Please do not ask me for points or votes.
:bulletred:~ Points, badges or favorites require no thanks.
:bulletred:~ Favorites require no comments but all are welcomed.
:bulletred:~ Please do not tag me or invite me to a chat site.
:bulletred:~ Feel free to share what you know about art.
:bulletred:~ Feel free to trade llamas and leave friendly notes.
:bulletred:~ Do not claim my art as your own doings.
:bulletred:~ You do not need permission to use my art.
:bulletred:~ If you use my art as stock, link and credit me.
:bulletred:~ You do not have permission to steal my art.
:bulletred:~ Thieves will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Official Beta Tester

Official Beta Tester

:thumb98639342:Windows ver.2.0 by RekizdChange by SinMarai

I am an official beta tester. I am a member of the bug reporting team here on dA. I am also a member of the Microsoft Developer Team. I enjoy finding things that are not quite right and figuring out a solution. I have beta tested dA since becoming a member of this great community in 2004.

:bulletyellow: ~ I have served as an Official Beta Tester for Google and Microsoft since 1994.
:bulletyellow: ~ I have been a Premium Member and Official Beta Tester at DA for over nine years.
:bulletyellow: ~ I design high end cutting edge computing solutions for the music industry.

Internet Browsers


I use Internet Explorer as a default browser, but that does not mean I use it all the time. I also use other major browsers to proof my web designs, in order to make sure my work is consistent and uniform across platforms. A well designed site will look the same on all computers worldwide, regardless of the OS and its apps. I run WHQL drivers on Intel and AMD Radeon compatible hardware.

Operating Systems

IE stamp by MeisterMaximumO_o by Kaboose-18Windows Stamp by Stollrofl

I hear a lot of folks throwing off on Microsoft. It is easy to do unless you become aware of the sheer complexity of creating an operating system that will run well on a huge list of hardware that can be assembled and programmed in a myriad of mostly unknown and unpredictable ways by people who often know little about computers. My hat is off to this great company and the many hard working developer teams worldwide.

Technical Support

Website Notepad - Stamp by ConDecepticonWindows 7 by Tantawi

:bulletyellow: ~ I support the following MS OS packages:


:bulletyellow: ~ I work with the desktop and server varients as well as the new mobile apps and embedded devices.

PC Platforms

Gigabyte GA-7PESH3 by slowdog294

:bulletyellow: ~ I still own and operate older 32bit computers.
:bulletyellow: ~ I also have some newer 64bit machines.
:bulletyellow: ~ I work with home and office solutions.


In the Spotlight


:iconspotlightplz: ~ Featured Organs ~ :iconspotlightplz:

What could be more awesome than the King of Instruments, the Mighty Pipe Organ? These magnificent mechanical marvels are among the largest machines constructed by the hand of man. No other musical instrument approaches their sonic power or frequency range.

Here in the spotlight are a few of the amazing pictures of pipe organs I think deserve extra exposure. Think of this little widget as SD's, or Slowdog's Deviations, sort of like the DD's given by the dA admins.

Slow Dog's Community

Citizen of the world stamp by lennyconilEveryone IS Equal by bradleysaysNo war by Destruktive

:iconfella1plz::community: united colors of the world by wapamup :community::iconfella2plz:

United Federation of Planets by Warp-Speedunity stamp by smevstock
American Countries by Claire-stampsPageviews anyone? by Centauran

"We could prevent a lot of unnecessary hatred, strife, and war if everyone in the world could all just understand and have the courage to say, 'My religious beliefs/non-beliefs are my opinions/preferences. They will most likely never be proven/disproven in my lifetime. They may not be the same as yours, but they are no greater, nor lesser than yours.' This would remove a huge source of needless conflict from the world."



Jul 30, 2015
12:11 pm
Jul 30, 2015
4:50 am
Jul 30, 2015
3:16 am
Jul 30, 2015
1:37 am
Jul 29, 2015
11:36 pm


:icondark-win7-themes: :iconagnew-art: :icongalleryofworlds: :iconteambotanix:

Llama Patrol

Bolivian Llama
Winter Fashion

A well dressed Albino Llama
Ready for Winter in the Altiplano


Llama Badge PNG by KomodoEmpire
Llama Wave by KinnisonArc

Llama Herding on deviantART

chasing llama by fear-the-brilliance:iconllamatruckplz:run llamas run by fear-the-brilliance

:bulletred: ~ If you view an artwork and add it to your favourites,
give a comment to the artist and perhaps a llama, too!
:bulletred: ~ If somebody gives you a llama,
give them a llama in return.
:bulletred: ~ The first time you visit somebody's page,
show them you liked their art with a llama.
:bulletred: ~ Trade a llama if offered a point
from somebody who wants a llama from you.
:bulletred: ~ If somebody adds your art to their faves,
give them the gift of a llama as thanks.


What is a Llama?

The llama (Lama glama) is a South American camelid, widely used as a pack and meat animal by Andean cultures since pre-hispanic times. They are everywhere in Bolivia. Many Native folks keep them as loving pets and hard working farm helpers. Llamas are very loyal creatures.

The height of a full-grown, full-size llama is between 1.7 meters (5.5 ft) and 1.8 meters (6 ft) tall at the top of the head. They can weigh between approximately 130 kilograms (280 lb) and 200 kilograms (450 lb). At birth, a baby llama (called a cria) can weigh between 9.1 kilograms (20 lb) and 14 kilograms (30 lb).

Llama on patio by Philip Greenspun,
An albino llama enjoys resting at Machu Picchu, Peru

Llamas are very social animals and like to live with other llamas as a herd. They can be trained to work as a team and are highly obedient, though temperamental at time as most camalids all over the world are known to be.

Overall, the fiber produced by a llama is very soft and is naturally lanolin free. The Natives weave it into colourful fabric to make the famous Awayo and Apaca garments worn by the local rural folk who live in the mountains of South America.

Llamas are intelligent and can learn simple tasks after a few repetitions. When using a pack, llamas can carry about 25% to 30% of their body weight for several miles. They enjoy pleasing a loving master who rewards them for a job well done.

Llamas on National Geographic
A llama wonders among the ruins in the Chilean Andes

Llamas appear to have originated from the central plains of North America about 40 million years ago. They migrated to South America about 3 million years ago as the watershed moved and the climate changed. Humans had not yet appeared in America, being found in Africa at that time.

By the end of the last ice age (10,000–12,000 years ago) camelids were extinct in North America, around the time modern light skinned humans appeared in Sweden. Note that the Native Andean humans had appeared in the mountains of South America much earlier. Their culture was highly advanced by the time the fair skinned folks arrived in America about 800 years ago.

As of 2007, there were over 7 million llamas and alpacas in South America and, due to importation northward from South America in the late 20th century, there are now over 158,000 llamas and 100,000 alpacas in the US and Canada.

Click this WIKI to learn more.

Featured Llama Stampage

Llama Badges by eggyLlama love by OnWingsOfBlue
Llama Whore by PatrickRuegheimerOfficial: Llama Farmer stamp by pencilandpaperaddict
llama by o-pieLlama Stamp by Kaoz-Commander
Random Acts of Llama by Kawaii-Demonic-ThingNinja Llama Stamp by PsychoMonkeyShogun
started with a llama by m0onjadeLlama Traders Tavern by Khalitzburg

I herd llamas on my deviant farm. The little buggers are everywhere on dA. Be it known that if you visit my page and I see your ike, you will get a llama from my farm. If I visit your page, I will leave a llama behind to give you love and respect. Also, if I add one of your works to my favourites, you will get a llama. And finally, everybody who gives me a llama will get one, a simple swap from your corral to mine. I do not buy llamas with points. However, I will trade a llama for a point from you. These points will be given to fellow deviants as awards of merit and appreciation.

My Herd of 7,101 Llamas

Current Llama Wrangler
Since September 3rd, 2013

Llama Rampage by KinnisonArcSuper Llama Pursuit by KinnisonArc
Ninja Llama Assault by KinnisonArcFancy Llama Chase by KinnisonArc

Going out, 5,582

Coming in, 1,519

Out of every five llamas that come to my farm, only one gets to stay in the local herd. They breed rather quickly. I like finding homes for them. I am currently herding Fancy Llamas which will grow in numbers large enough to become King Llamas. I need only 989 more of these furry friends in order to advance my herd to royalty.

The Fancy Llama
When the herd reaches 1,000 llamas

fancy llama by KGBigelow

Llama Club by easydisplaynameSuper Llama Club by easydisplayname
Albino Llama Club by easydisplaynameSuper Albino Llama Club by easydisplayname
Ninja Llama Club by easydisplaynameFancy Llama Club by easydisplayname

Featured Lllama Art

Ninja Llama by TrollGirl

Mystical Llama by SaiyaGina

Da Ultimate Llama Collection 3 by booboojim

Llama levels by =computercomedyguy


Ranger Ricardo
Artist | Professional | Varied
United States


Greetings and best wishes to all fellow deviants and other visitors who come here. I am the Slow Dog, also known as Ranger Ricardo, Yellow Team Leader with the Alcoa Ridge Runners, a local Blount County group of hikers who go out on weekend hikes and camps along randomly chosen trails in the backcountry areas of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Rest Stop on Little Greenbrier Trail by slowdog294
Ricardo and Ellen resting at Little Brier Gap - GSMNP

I believe in helping folks find real lasting joy every chance I get using the meager talents given to me. To this end, the artwork I have made and submitted to dA is presented in topical folders within my gallery, along with the thousands of favourites collected over my decade of dA membership. With the best of regards, I thank you very much for visiting my little corner of deviantART. Everyone is always welcome here.


J. Tyson Forker Top Spotlight Wide by slowdog294
J. Tyson Forker Memorial 4/32 Mighty WurliTzer

On these pages, you will see the grandest of mankind's musical creations up close and personal in all its glory, the King of Instruments, the Mighty Theatre Pipe Organ of the Silent Movie Age. You will also see beautiful landscapes, lovely women, and places where humans have lavished fantastic splendor upon homes, churches, and castles of all sizes. Tucked in between all this, you will find other objects of man's desire as well as the creatures who share this planet with us. Please enjoy your visit.



Expanding mankind's mind and world since 1956.

Waiting for Recovery by gunstar1GOING FOR A STROLL by archangel72367
Against All Odds by ArraxxonShuttle into the Blue by trekkie604
The ISS Station by 2753Productions
The ISS Station by 2753Productions
Space Launch System by GeneralTate
Space Launch System by GeneralTate

My Main Website

Walnut Hill Productions Home Page

WurliTzer Support Stamp by slowdog294MidiTzer Support Stamp by slowdog294
Proud to be a TPO player by slowdog294Organist stamp by slowdog294
"It's all about the King of Instruments!"

The main website for Walnut Hill Productions is at the Theatre Organ Home Page. Founded by Jerry Kautz of Vintage Organ fame, the site is free to anyone wishing the world to see the vintage organ in their care. This includes all Theatre Pipe Organs, Church Pipe Organs, and certain sought after electronic instruments and accessories. To learn more, click the link below...


The Birth of Spanky

Wed May 20, 2015, 12:24 PM

Opening Message

Greetings and welcome to the Slow Dog's Place. Danger Dan here. This journal edition is going to focus on digital technology. It's all about building a personal computer powered by Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64bit OEM edition, from picking out the parts to putting it all together and making it work flawlessly. Yes, it is simple to buy a pre-built machine, but it is far more satisfying to do it yourself. So let's roll out the antistatic mat, don the wrist strap, retrieve that pair of long nosed pliers and a good long Philips screwdriver and get started.


Ranger Ricardo needed a new workstation. For over ten years, he had relied on his trusty XP box named Delilah to get work done. She had served him well through many service calls and recording sessions as a highly reliable workhorse. Even today, this computer works well, although XP support has long ended. She sits silent, waiting on a job to do. It was time to think about her replacement. A new Windows 7 platform was in order, one modern enough to get through the first years of Windows 10. It had to be all of the following things.

Building Spanky 11 by slowdog294
The system proposal sheet

01. Micro ATX case with front panel ODD and FDD bays
02. Socket H2 LGA1150 mATX motherboard
03. Multiple hot swap solid state boot drives
04. Rewritable M-Disc support with enterprise HDD storage
05. PCIeGen3 support for one 16X single slot video solution
06. Legacy PCI, serial and parallel port support
07. USB 2.0 and 3.0 internal and external port support
08. Platinum Plus certified hybrid switching single 12volt rail 860 watt PSU
09. 32GB (8GB x 4) nonECC RAM clocked at 1600MHz with a CAS of 11
10. A long and flexible upgrade path validated for workstation grade additions

Limits on how powerful the computer could be and how much it would cost were considered. It was concluded that a decent and reasonably powerful machine could be built from readily available modern parts by anyone with around two thousand dollars or less to invest in quality gear. Dependability and longevity are always marks of a well built system, even when purchasing parts on sale or over time. There is no way to future proof a build, but it can serve a user well for many years if things are planned out with forthought and attention to detail.

01. The budget for the finished core system shall not exceed $1,600
02. The parts shall be obtained from local sources or New Egg
03. The platform shall include the Intel Xeon E3 processor
04. Standard dual channel nonECC RAM shall work with the system
05. The machine shall fit into a two compartment micro ATX cube case
06. The mount for the PSU shall have a side air duct on the case cable panel
07. Thermal management shall be a dual fan push/pull air cooling solution
08. The machine shall be able to dual boot from front access hot swap media
09. Routine servicing shall be able to be done tool free.
10. The expected service life shall be five years from first boot date


The first thing to consider when building any custom computer is what type of machine it will be and who will be using it. Each different set of user tasks requires hardware and software that give the intended results without errors and a lot of waiting. Everybody wants to go fast. Everybody wants the latest and greatest thing they know about. Most people can get by with a premade off the shelf box. However, those seeking real power need to think deeper, outside the retail box. Ponder the purpose of the beast you intend to bring into being.

Building Spanky 001 by slowdog294
The Gigabyte GA-B85M-D3H system board

01. Will the rig be used by a layman?
02. Will the rig be used by a student?
03. Will the rig be used by a professional?
04. Will the rig be used by a developer?
05. Will the rig be used by a system integrator?
06. Will the rig be a test bed for hardware?
07. Will the rig be a test bed for software?
08. Will the rig be part of a network?
09. Will the rig be in a fixed private installation?
10. Will the rig be part of a public offering?

In the list of Ricardo's needs was a system that could serve as a mission critical platform for music production and design research along with light 3D rendering and photography post work. Since he is a songwriter and producer with over forty years of experience, having a recording studio in a portable box opens a lot of doors. Being able to render and process images and video rounds out the package, taking media all the way to retail ready on a single system. The main condition is that it must be able to do all this without crashing under full load.

Processor and RAM

At the heart of the computer is the secret to a failsafe build. Intel makes a variety of CPUs designed for the 1150 pin land grid array socket known as H2, the Haswell Refresh. Any i3, i5, i7 or E3 will work on the Gigabyte GA-B85M-D3H motherboard according to a compatibility list at the OEM site for this product. The E3 part is known as a Xeon, Intel's professional line of x86 processors. Of note is what this chip actually is.

Building Spanky 006 by slowdog294
The retail package containing the Intel Xeon E3-1246v3 LGA 1150 CPU

The consumer version of this CPU is known as the i7 4790S. Both chips have four cores, hyperthreading, and integrated graphics. Both will operate on standard dual channel RAM at 1600MHz. Neither can be overclocked. Gamers will choose the I7 4790K since it is actually an overclockable Xeon clone which lacks trusted instructions the Xeon is famous for.

The Chassis

A computer is only as tough as its case. It only lasts as long as it remains cool. Heat and dirt are the worst enemies a machine faces. The case has to keep dust out while taking cool air in and venting hot air out. It must be relatively quiet and not impose upon the workspace. It must be a thing of beauty when folks notice its presence. It should not attract attention, but yet it wants to be stylish and modern. Those are the things most people think about when choosing the right chassis. For Ricardo, the list was like this.

Building Spanky 27 by slowdog294
The Raijintek Aeneas Micro ATX Case

01. The finish shall be black
02. There shall be a side air vent for the PSU
03. There shall be no bragging bling
04. The unit shall have a cube form factor
05. The cube shall have two compartments
06. The motherboard shall lie flat
07. There shall be a removable motherboard tray
08. There shall be five expansion slot brackets
09. The drives shall be on tool free mounts
10. The case fan ports shall have dust filters

The Raijintek Aeneas Micro ATX Cube Case has all these features. The motherboard tray is held in by five thumb screws. Four thumbscrews hold the PSU in place. Another thumbscrew holds the PCI retention bracket. Smaller thumbscrews hold down the five PCI bus card brackets. The standard 3.5 inch mechanical hard drives mount in a cage below the motherboard tray on tool free sleds. Since the front panel has bays for standard floppy disk and optical disc drives, a clever solution was added for enabling two solid state drives to be slid into a mobile rack within the floppy bay to allow for dual boot or backup sessions.

Power and Storage

When enthusiasts on a budget build a computer, one of the most overlooked items is the power supply unit. Either they go for a low powered device or try to save money on a sketchy model claiming to be something it is not with a bargain tag. The results can be disasterous. These can include the random reboot or the sudden crash where everything freezes and becomes unresponsive. Home users can excuse this behavior, but professionals loose data and money on critical system halts. It is always a wise decision to pick a PSU that has plenty of juice in reserve. The unit must deliver a clean and full power draw while remaining cool and quiet at 50% of total duty.

Building Spanky 28 by slowdog294
The Power and Storage Components

The next thing to consider is how data will be ran, stored and backed up. The fastest kind of bootable media are solid state drives. Mechanical drives are larger in capacity but much slower in performance. Then there is the need to keep backup copies of personal files, games, projects and other user files. The best way today is the M-disc for bluray burning. The platter uses inorganic technology, giving the media a very long shelf life both before and after being written to.

Ricardo needed the options of dual booting and instant backup. The media must be hot swappable from the front of the tower. The solution was elegant and simple. In the floppy bay below the bluray burner, a mobile docking cage made by Icy Dock was to be installed. This unit can hold two solid state drives on sleds which can be locked in place with a key. Each sled has an activity LED. The key locks both drawers simultaniously. Booting an OS is a matter of inserting the drive and booting up.

The Hardware Build

When all the parts had shipped to the House of Blue Flowers, it was time to start building Spanky. The process would be frought with a wee tad of peril, making Ricardo scratch his furry head more than once. Many important lessons were learned along the way.

The first thing to do was mount the processor in the socket on the motherboard. This is not hard at all. It is a delicate operation requiring a light touch and no force whatsoever. This is how to do it.

Building Spanky 13 by slowdog294
CPU installation

01. Take the motherboard and accessories out of the box
02. Put the accessories back inside the box and remove the board from its antistatic bag
03. Place the motherboard on the box with the black CPU socket cover facing up
04. Make sure the black socket cover is in place on the CPU socket
05. Remove the processor from its package and lay it on the plastic tray it came in
06. Push down on the little bar beside the socket to release it from under the hook
07. Lift the bar upwards and swing it back to open the CPU socket
08. Do not touch the pins inside the socket since it is sensitive to static discharge
09. Look for two small pips along the sides of the CPU socket
10. Look for two small notches along the sides of the CPU
11. Look for the little arrow in the corner of the socket
12. Take the CPU out of the plastic tray without touching the underside
13. Orient the CPU so that the arrow on the socket matches the arrow on the CPU
14. Very carefully lower the CPU into the socket with no force
15. Look to see that the pips on the socket are engaging the notches on the CPU
16. Close the socket by lowering the bar and locking it under the hook
17. The protective black CPU socket cover pops off
18. Store the cover inside the motherboard box
19. The CPU is now installed on the motherboard

The second thing to do is mount the motherboard on the tray provided inside the case. The Raijintek Aeneas chassis has a removable tray held in by five thumbscrews around the edges of the tray, three on the backplane and two over the hard drive sleds.

Building Spanky 31 by slowdog294
The removable system tray

01. Remove the case from its packaging
02. Remove the two side panels and store them in the box
03. Remove the motherboard tray by undoing the five thumbscrews
04. Look at the tray standoffs and make sure they match the motherboard holes
05. Place the motherboard on the standoffs taking care not to scratch the board
06. Put screws into all the holes and carefully tighten them down but not too tight
07. Locate the I/O shield among the accessories inside the motherboard box
08. Very carefully align the shield with the opening on the backplane of the case
09. Make sure the shield orientation matches the jacks on the motherboard
10. Push the shield into the opening with care since it has sharp edges
11. Make sure all four corners of the shield snap into place
12. The motherboard is now ready for installation into the case

The third thing to do is mount the CPU cooler to the motherboard. The Noctua NH-U12S heat sink comes with all the hardware in little boxes, one for Intel, the other for AMD. The Intel mounting system consists of a backplate with four studs sticking out, four plastic spacers, two metal brackets and four thumbscrews.

Building Spanky 30 by slowdog294
CPU Cooler mounted to motherboard

01. Remove the cooler from its packaging leaving the small plastic cover attached to the cold plate
02. Remove the fan from the cooler by pulling gently on the middle of the wire clips
03. Find the Intel mounting kit and remove the contents from the box
04. Orient the backplate so that the three cutouts clear the three screws holding the CPU socket
05. Carefully insert the studs through the holes around the CPU socket
06. Place a plastic spacer on each stud surrounding the CPU socket
07. Put the two metal brackets onto the studs so that the cooler points in the desired direction when mounted
08. Put a thumbscrew on each stud, tightening them equally in a star pattern but not too tight
09. Wipe the CPU lid with a lint free paper towel moistened with 91% isopropyl alcohol
10. Put a pea sized dab of thermal paste in the center of the CPU lid
11. Wipe the heat sink cold plate with a lint free paper towel moistened with 91% isopropyl alcohol
12. Lower the heat sink onto the two threaded studs sticking up from the metal brackets
13. Carefully tighten the hollow screws on the heatsink down onto the studs using the provided screwdriver
14. Turn the screws down equally on both studs until they stop being sure not to overtighten them
15. Reinstall the fan so that the label faces the heat sink and the power cable is at the bottom of the fan
16. Remove the second fan from its package and locate the mounting hardware in the cooler accessory box
17. Remove the rubber grommets from the four corners of the fan on the unlabeled side
18. Locate the four heavy grommets in the common parts bag and place them on the fan
19. Locate two strips of padding and install them along the sides of the cooler from top to bottom
20. Locate the two wire brackets and install them on the fan so that the label faces away from the heat sink
21. Install the fan so that the label faces away from the heat sink and the power cable is at the bottom
22. Locate the wye adapter cable and plug the two fan cables into it
23. Plug the other end of the wye adapter cable into the CPU fan socket on the motherboard
24. The CPU cooler is now installed

The forth thing to do is mount the power supply unit into the case. It is held in by four thumb screws sticking out of the back panel. The unit goes into the bottom compartment with the power switch facing aft and the unit on its side so that the fan points outward.

01. Set the system board tray assembly aside in a safe static free place away from harm
02. Place the case on the workbench so that the power supply chamber is within view
03. Remove the PSU from its packaging and set the box filled with cables aside for now
04. Place the PSU into the chamber on its side so that the fan points toward the outside of the case
05. Put four thumbscrews into the four holes on the PSU and equally torque them down but not too tight
06. The power supply unit is now installed

The fifth thing to do is install the RAM into the motherboard memory slots. There are four slots, each one color coded and keyed. There are two slots per channel of the same color and the modules will only fit one way. Do not try to force them in. Check to make sure the key on the slot matches the notch on the module.

Building Spanky 10 by slowdog294
Two 16GB kits of Kingston Value RAM clocked at 1600MHz

01. Set the tower to the side and put the motherboard tray assembly on the workbench
02. Locate the four slots on the motherboard where the RAM goes
03. Find and open the two kits of RAM, each one containing two matched modules
04. Remove one module at a time from its packaging prior to fitting it into the slot
05. Look at the notch on the module and the key on the slot to properly orient the memory
06. Put a module into each slot making sure it clickes into place and the latches rest against the ends
07. When all four modules are in place, the RAM is installed and the motherboard assembly is complete
08. Set the motherboard assembly to the side in an antistatic place away from harm

The sixth thing to do is put the motherboard assembly into the case. Care must be taken to make sure the jacks on the motherboard sit properly against the I/O shield. The motherboard can go into the case in only one direction, and that is with the label on the CPU cooler fan facing the back plane of the case.

Building Spanky 35 by slowdog294
System build nearing completion

01. Put the case on the workbench so that the front of the enclosure faces to the right
02. Take the motherboard assembly and note the way it is supposed to fit
03. Place the assembly carefully into the case while making sure the jacks line up with the shield
04. Put five thumbscrews into the holes along the edges of the tray across the backplane and over the HDDs
05. Tighten all the thumbscrews equally snug but not too tight
06. The motherboard assembly is now installed and ready for the cables

The seventh thing to do is install the storage devices. There is an optical drive and a mobile rack which slide into the bays in the front of the tower. The optical drive goes on top, with the mobile rack underneath it.

Building Spanky 18 by slowdog294
Icy Dock Tough Armor 2 Mobile Rack

01. Remove the optical drive from its package and find eight mounting screws
02. Slide the drive into the top 5.25 inch bay so that the drawer door faces toward the front
03. Put four mounting screws into each side of the drive and equally torque them down but not too tight
04. Remove the mobile rack from its package and find four mounting screws
05. Slide the mobile rack into the 3.5 inch bay so that the key lock faces toward the front
06. Put two mounting screws into each side of the mobile rack and torque them down but not too tight
07. The storage devices are ready to receive optical and solid state media
08. Remove the solid state drive from its package and find four mounting screws
09. Unlock the mobile rack with one of the two supplied cylinder keys
10. Slide the bottom sled out of the mobile rack by pushing the eagle claw release near the key
11. Orient the SSD so that the fancy skull speed demon label is facing up
12. Put the SSD into the sled so that the signal and power sockets face away from the eagle claw
13. Attach the SSD to the sled using four screws and torque them down equally but not too tight
14. Slide the sled back into the mobile rack and make sure the eagle claw clicks to lock it in
15. Use the provided key to lock the mobile rack in order to prevent removal of the SSD
16. The storage devices are now installed and ready for the cables

The eighth thing to do is run the signal cables from the motherboard to the storage devices. These will be flat SATA links about eighteen inches long with little metal clips to keep them from pulling out of the sockets on each end. Also, hook up the front panel buttons and lights to the header on the motherboard.

Building Spanky 38 by slowdog294
Cable Management 101 before tie down

01. Locate two SATA cables among the things remaining in the motherboard box
02. Plug the first cable into the optical drive and plug the other end into the first black SATA II socket
03. Plug the second cable into the SSD and plug the other end into the first white SATA III socket
04. The storage devices now have signals
05. Gather the cables that run to the switches and signal jacks on the top bonnet of the case
06. Manage the cables as you run them to the motherboard front panel headers
07. Plug the power LED into the proper pins on the header with correct polarity
08. Plug the power switch into the proper pins on the header nonpolarized
09. Plug the drive activity LED into the proper pins on the header polarized
10. Plug the system BIOS speaker into the speaker header polarized
11. Plug the high definition audio line into the audio codec header
12. Plug the USB 2.0 line into the USB 2.0 header number one
13. Plug the USB 3.0 line into the USB 3.0 socket
14. There will be an empty USB 2.0 header, serial and parallel headers, and TPM
15. Look to see that all panel headers have labels facing forward
16. There will be empty headers for reset, intrusion and remote power leds
17. All signals, switches and lights are now connected to the motherboard
18. Check the integrity of these connections
19. Make sure the right lines are in the right places
20. Manage the wires out of the air flow and tie them down
21. The system is now ready to receive power connections

The ninth thing to do is install the power cables to the case fans, motherboard power sockets and storage device power sockets. The power supply unit is modular so that only the cables being used need to be installed. This greatly cuts down on case clutter and airflow restriction.

Building Spanky 39 by slowdog294
More unruly wiring in an open case

01. Locate the box filled with power cables and remove all the bags
02. Set the legacy cables with standard MOLEX connectors aside
03. Find the twenty-four pin motherboard power cable
04. Plug one end of the cable into the motherboard power socket
05. Plug the other end of the cable into the two marked PSU sockets
06. Find the eight pin CPU power cable
07. Plug one end of the cable into the PSU and the other end into the motherboard
08. Find one of the multi socket SATA power cables
09. Plug the first jack at one end into the optical drive
10. Plug the second jack into the Icy Dock containing the SSD
11. Plug the other end into one of the six pin sockets on the PSU
12. Plug the MOLEX connectors on the front case fans together
13. Plug the MOLEX connectors on the rear case fans together
14. Plug the three pin connector on the front fans into the sys fan 1 header on the motherboard
15. Plug the three pin connector on the rear fans into the sys fan 2 header on the motherboard
16. All the devices inside the case are now ready to receive power

The tenth thing to do is make sure all the steps mentioned above were done properly. It is essential to make certain there are no pinched wires or loose screws. It is also important to check for clearance around the fans and make sure that no wires can come in contact with the fan blades during runtime.

Building Spanky 36 by slowdog294
Completed hardware assembly

The hardware assembly is now finished. Leave the side panels off the case for now so that when the machine is powered up, the fans can be checked for proper operation.

The Software Build

Now that the hardware is finally together, it is time to do the difficult part of the build where the hardware is configured and the operating system along with the hardware drivers get installed and tested for stability.

Building Spanky 34 by slowdog294
First boot screen

In an ideal world, one could put a system together and button it up prior to installation of the software. Spanky was not that friendly. When power was first applied, not all the internal cables were properly connected. The machine would start up and then rapidly shut down. It would loop between off and on until the I/O switch on the PSU was put in the O position to kill all power. The rig had to be taken apart and tested without media outside the case to find the problem. The eight pin power cable going to the CPU was not plugged in at the PSU end, preventing the system from starting up.

Building Spanky 35 by slowdog294
CPU stats page of the first boot screen

Once the unit successfully powered up after reassembly, it went directly into the BIOS since there was no bootable media in place. The UEFI in this machine is very detailed, reporting statistics down to two decimal places. The numbers could be seen fluctuating as the new computer thought about its birth.

Building Spanky 40 by slowdog294
Motherboard drivers being installed

Once Windows 7 was up and running, the next thing to do was get out the OEM driver disc and begin the process of making all this high tech gear work together as a stable platform.

Building Spanky 41 by slowdog294
Windows updates being installed

When the driver model was complete, the final item on the agenda was to install all pertinent updates to the operating system and any hardware drivers found to be out of date.

Stay tuned for updates to this journal when Ricardo elaborates on the software installation session and the issues encountered while getting the machine ready for the user.

  • Mood: dA Love
  • Listening to: Reviews about Haswell class motherboards
  • Reading: Tech journals about Intel computer platforms
  • Watching: Over five hundred fellow deviants making art
  • Playing: Stringed instruments
  • Eating: Whatever makes me live longer
  • Drinking: Anything wet that will not hurt me

Who I Am and What I Do

So how would one describe me? Obviously, I am a flower child of the '60's, a mild mannered farm boy from East Tennessee who loves music and art, living by the way of the Hippy and following the teachings of Pachamama. Some would call me spiritual yet somewhat pagan, being a scientist by nature, a rather retiring and crusty old professor who holds Jessie Crawford, Uncle Albert and Madre Terra in the highest of reverent esteem. I also love the dearest younglings who bless me every day with their presence in my life.

Quality Jam Time by slowdog294
Quality jam time with Doctor Zander

I like music in all its forms. I am an active musician, though I officially retired from the industry years ago. Folks in the Theatre Pipe Organ world know me as the Bone Doctor. At Rocky Branch Community Center in Walland, Blount County, Tennessee, I am known as Guru. Every Friday night, one can find me playing mountain music with those whom I grew up with, fellow students, close friends, cousins and family.

Standing among giants by slowdog294
Standing among giants - GSMNP

I am a man who enjoys nature with a passion. Hiking and camping in the remote backcountry are the ultimate forms of rest and recreation for me among a few close friends. It is what I do on most weekends these days.

I an outgoing in public. However, I am a gentlemen with the ladies. To me, women are the artwork created by the Makers. They come in all sizes, shapes and colours, and they are all beautiful, each in their own wonderful way.

House Rules by slowdog294
Camp at Kepart Shelter - GSMNP

Women deserve to be treated with kindness, respect, adoration and equality as humans, for they are better equipped to handle stressful scenerios, and as an added bonus, appreciate art in ways men cannot.

Building Spanky 35 by slowdog294
Spanky BIOS M.I.T. screen

When I am not building computers or making music, I can be found outside doing the greenskeeping, gardening, riding my bike, or observing the sky and woodlands during hikes in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Hiking Twenty Mile Loop by slowdog294
Getting hiking bearings - GSMNP

I enjoy scale model construction, bowling, rollerskating and swimming. Diving from high places is a real thrill. I also enjoy flying in small airplanes. Anything that goes fast or has lots of power is pleasure for me, because I am a thrill seeker at heart. Boys never grow up. They just get bigger toys.

Ready For Liftoff by slowdog294
Space Shuttle Discovery on Pad 39A
1/144 Scale Revell Plastic Model Kit

Men go from being content commanding the playpen to taking over the world. I simply want to become one with Nature and have fun doing it. The trick to living happy is remembering what made you happy to begin with as a child. As I was growing up, two things thrilled me the most. Romping around in Nature and human space travel. As a middle aged man, these items still bring me great fascination and joy. And all my life, the music has never stopped playing...

Ricardo's Beginnings

Although I go by Ranger Ricardo here on dA, I was born Richard Elmer Mogridge of William Edwin Mogridge and Mary Naomi Perkins in Maryville, Tennessee on October 21st, 1956. I grew up in Townsend, Tennessee on the farm known all over Blount County as Fallbranch Hollow. I am primarily of Scottish descent, though the 1/8 Cherokee blood in my veins from my Dad's side of the family dominates my genetics.

The land I grew up in, which is mostly wooded, was originally purchased in 1930 for 10,000 dollars by my grandparents on my father's side, William Frederick Mogridge and Mary Alice Walker, who had relocated there from their previous home in Zainsville, Ohio where my father was born in 1923. Most of my people are from New York.

The beautiful farm is famous for a spring fed waterfall located at the north end of the property where a limestone cliff of 115 feet in height separates the mountains above from the valley below. It is lush woodland that looks like a fantasy scene straight out of a Walt Disney movie.

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is only three miles east of the farm, now owned by Romulus Myers, Attorney At Law, who purchased the 40 acre tract from the family in 1976 for 100,000 dollars. Today, it is worth over a million.

Happy Birthday, Jack. by manda-louTownsend, TN 2 by r3w1nd
Gatlinburg Tenn. by SybiezDowntown Knoxville - JFG by robicus

Adventure in the Smokies

East Tennessee is a unique place. To be found here are some of the oldest mountain ranges on Earth, where virgin undisturbed woodlands still grow. Folks who live here hold this magical land in such high reverance that a large area of wilderness, encompassing over 800 square miles in Tennessee and North Carolina, has been set aside as a nature preserve known as the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Ranger Ricardo at Andrews Bald by slowdog294
Ranger Ricardo at Andrews Bald - GSMNP

Over a half million acres of mountains, valleys, lakes, rivers and streams combine with diverse wildlife, hardwood and evergreen forests to greet over nine million visitors per year. It is the most visited National Park in the United States, straddling the Tennessee/North Carolina border along the Appalachian Trail. I enjoy being outdoors and hiking in this wonderful place enough to have a strong desire to lend a helping hand to the land I call home.

Get Involved

The Smoky Mountains National Park has no admittence fee. Keeping it attractive for visitors while making sure that Nature stays in balance requires a lot of hard work and dedication. Many opportunities await folks who come here, not only to have fun and get away from it all, but also, to learn about the park and take part in the stewardship of this national treasure.

Visit the official website of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.Visit the Great Smoky Mountains Association and shop for books and hiking supplies, park souveneers, and fine mountain foods.Volunteer for duty with the National Park Service - Get involved!

There are three ways to get involved if you share my passion for the wilderness. Obtain a job as a Park Ranger. Join the Great Smoky Mountains Association. Become a member of the Volunteers in Parks program. You can help us make a difference. We can save the wilderness for those who follow in the years to come. Click on a logo above to get started on your journey.

Park Rangers and Volunteers

Park Ranger Dale Ditmanson by slowdog294
Superintendent Dale Ditmanson - GSMNP

There are two kinds of personnel working within the staff of the National Park Service. There are the real Park Rangers, proudly wearing their trademark campaign hats, appointed federal lawgivers who get paid to work for the Department of the Interior. These hard working men and woman carry guns and proudly wear the arrowhead patch on their left shirt sleeve and a badge above their left shirt pocket. Without these legendary American Icons, the park would not exist. We all owe the Park Rangers a great debt of gratitude. The Park Rangers are the true heroes of the wilderness.

Ranger Patch by crimsonacquittal
National Park Volunteer

Then, there are the many people who work tirelessly without pay right beside the Park Rangers. They do not carry guns but they do wear a Ranger uniform with the Volunteer patch on the left shirt sleeve. These enthusiastic and dedicated workers are part of the official park staff. Their reward is knowing the National Parks will be around for future generations to enjoy. As a dedicated park advocate, I am working toward enrolling in the service of the Volunteers in Parks. My intentions are to adopt a backcountry hiking trail with primative campsites to care for.

Call of Duty

Ranger Ricardo on Buckeye Trail 14 by slowdog294
Ranger Ricardo on Buckeye Trail

During the everyday responsibilities of working in the Smokies, the Park Rangers depend on the Volunteers, forming a great team of enthusiastic folks with an unlimited passion for sharing the love of Nature and preserving it for everyone to experience in the years to come. Hard work is always a prelude to more fun than you ever thought possible. We have a lot of work to do in these mountains, and we have a bunch of fun doing it. Join us and live the adventure.

Something fun from old Punjab in India

Journal History


Add a Comment:
PixieTheCat Featured By Owner 1 day ago
Thanks for the favorite on Hell Run Hell Run by PixieTheCat
(1 Reply)
Shirley-Agnew-Art Featured By Owner 1 day ago
Thank you so much for the favourite Ricardo! :hug:
(1 Reply)
The-Artist-Incognito Featured By Owner 3 days ago  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thank you very much for the llama! Your photography is lovely =)
(1 Reply)
Cinnamoncandy Featured By Owner 3 days ago  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for the fav! :heart:
(1 Reply)
rwetzel Featured By Owner 5 days ago
Tks for the watch, the Llama and the several favs!
Quite varied gallery, I need some time to go through it :)

Oh, nice name, by the way!
(1 Reply)
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