This Old Mac

We’re here at the workspace of John Quimble, a Mac SE/30 owner who is seeking to upgrade. The crew of This Old Mac is filming John’s renovation of his old computer into a new machine.

Hi John.

Hi Bob. Why don’t you tell us what’s going on here.

Macintosh SE/30Well, Bob, as you can see, we’re installing the DVD drive now. We had to knock out some interior space to make room, enlarge this slot here, and run this cable, which starts here and goes through this conduit, around the side, outside the box really, and down into the new CPU we’ve hidden underneath our patio decking.

Tell us why the CPU is under the deck.

Well basically, it was because it wouldn’t fit in the original SE case, especially after the other upgrades.

What other upgrades have you done?

Well we started out with a flat panel monitor upgrade. We knew there weren’t any adapters for the new digital screens from Apple, so we mounted a VGA compatible screen on an extensible arm on top of the unit.

That’s a Sony, isn’t it?


What else have you added?

Well, we needed a new video board to run the Sony, and that led us to the lack of color support on the old SE/30 motherboard, so we’re using that as a wall hanging in the front hallway and replacing the motherboard with one we pulled from a new iMac flat-panel and hid behind this wall clock.

I thought the motherboard was in the deck?

No, Bob, what’s under the deck isn’t the motherboard exactly, but in fact it is just the processor card.

Why did you put the processor under the deck?

Because it wouldn’t fit behind the wall clock.


Users have complained for years about the lack of a second button on the Mac mouse, and we didn’t think the beige original fit well with our sparse Japanese decor in the den, so we got one of those new half-size keyboards you type with on one hand.

The Half Keyboard from

Yes. We got one of those, which is black, and mounted it on top of a Microsoft Intellimouse.


Hot glue. And now we have the world’s first 120 button-equivalent mouse.

Wow. That’s revolutionary. Tell us about the DVD.

Well, actually, it’s the only component that fit in the original SE case, except we had to remove the internal framework to mount it, and cut a new hole…

With a band saw?

…yes, a band saw, to accommodate the drive mechanism. Basically the entire front of the device just flops down to allow access.

It kind of looks like it’s sticking its tongue out.

We like it.

That’s all the time we have. Next week, we’ll take a look at how John intends to convert an old SCSI flatbed scanner into a goldfish bowl stand and look at his luggage collection, which consists entirely of hollowed out blue-and-white cases.

Thanks Bob.

Thanks John.

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