How It's Made (2001–…): Season 9, Episode 4 - Steel Wool/Ranges/Carved Candles/Slot Machines - full transcript


>> Narrator: TODAY ON "HOW IT'S

MADE"...

STEEL WOOL...

RANGES...

CARVED CANDLES...

AND SLOT MACHINES.

WITH SO MANY ROUGH EDGES, STEEL

WOOL IS VERY ABRASIVE.

THAT'S WHAT MAKES IT SO USEFUL

FOR HEAVY-DUTY CLEANING AND

OTHER CHORES.

MECHANICS WERE THE FIRST TO USE

STEEL SHAVINGS FOR CLEANING AND

POLISHING PARTS.

BY THE EARLY PART OF THE 20th

CENTURY, EQUIPMENT WAS INVENTED

TO MASS PRODUCE THE STUFF.

THEN STEEL WOOL BECAME A

HOUSEHOLD NAME.

THERE ARE THOUSANDS OF METAL

THREADS IN EACH STEEL-WOOL PAD.

MANUFACTURERS START WITH A

COILED STEEL ROD THAT UNWINDS

THROUGH METAL GUIDES INTO A

16-FOOT-LONG DIE MACHINE.

AS THE RODS TRAVEL THROUGH SIX

PROGRESSIVELY SMALLER DIES, IT

GETS NARROWER AND MORE UNIFORMLY

SHAPED.

SPOOLS WIND UP THE ROD AFTER IT

PASSES THROUGH EACH DIE TO

PREVENT ANY SNARLS IN

PRODUCTION.

THE PROGRESSION THROUGH THE DIES

REWORKS THE STEEL'S BASIC

STRUCTURE, DOUBLING ITS TENSILE

STRENGTH.

WHEN IT REACHES THE END OF THE

DIE MACHINE, THE STEEL ROD HAS

BEEN NARROWED BY A LITTLE MORE

THAN HALF.

THE SLIMMER, STRONGER WIRE WILL

BE EASIER TO PROCESS.

TO CHECK ITS TENSILE STRENGTH, A

TECHNICIAN PLACES A WIRE SAMPLE

IN A TESTING DEVICE.

CLAMPS PULL FROM BOTH

DIRECTIONS.

IT TAKES OVER HALF A TON OF

FORCE TO SNAP IT, AN INDICATION

THAT IT'S TOUGH ENOUGH TO BE

MACHINED.

SO, IT'S OVER TO THE STEEL-WOOL

CUTTING MACHINE, WHICH SPANS 50

FEET.

HERE, THE WIRE TRAVELS OVER A

SERIES OF DRUMS, WHILE 29 BLADES

SHAVE IT.

EACH BLADE PRODUCES SHAVINGS

THINNER THAN A HUMAN HAIR.

STREAMS OF THE SHAVINGS EXIT THE

MACHINE AND JOIN THE RIVER OF

STEEL THREADS FLOWING THROUGH

THE FACTORY.

EACH OF THESE STEEL THREADS HAS

BEEN CUT IN A PYRAMID

CONFIGURATION, MAKING IT

RAZOR-SHARP.

THE SHAVED STEEL WINDS ONTO

LARGE ROLLS.

WORKERS ALIGN SEVERAL OF THESE

ROLLS ONTO RACKS, THEN SECURE

THEM IN PLACE.

THE ENDS OF EACH ROLL ARE

BUNCHED TOGETHER...

AND THREADED THROUGH A SERIES OF

BOBBINS.

FINALLY, THE ENDS ARE FED INTO A

NEEDLE-PUNCH MACHINE.

HERE, HUNDREDS OF FISH-HOOK

SHAPED NEEDLES WEAVE THE STEEL

THREADS TOGETHER.

THIS VERY BASIC CROCHET JOB

PRODUCES A LONG MAT OF WOOL

THAT'S OF SUITABLE DENSITY FOR

WOODWORKING.

TO MAKE HOUSEHOLD CLEANING PADS,

WORKERS BULK UP THE STEEL WOOL

EVEN MORE.

THEY INSERT LAYERS OF NEEDLE MAT

INTO THE STREAMS OF STEEL

FIBERS.

THIS GIVES THE PADS EXTRA

STRENGTH FOR BIG SCOURING JOBS.

THIS MULTILAYERED STREAM THEN

HEADS OVER TO THE NEEDLE-PUNCH

MACHINE TO BE WOVEN TOGETHER.

ONCE THE STEEL WOOL GOES ONTO A

FINAL ROLL, IT'S READY TO BE

TURNED INTO PADS FOR CLEANING,

SANDING, OR POLISHING.

NEXT, SEE WHAT'S COOKING WITH

TODAY'S HIGH-END RANGES.

>> Narrator: THE RANGE IS WHERE

THE ACTION IS IN THE KITCHEN.

IT'S WHERE WE WHIP TOGETHER

MEALS -- BAKED, BROILED, ROASTED

OR SAUTéED.

HIGH-END RANGES LIKE THIS ONE

ARE HOT, AND NOT JUST IN THE

OBVIOUS WAY.

THEY'RE AN UPMARKET TREND THAT

MAKE HOME COOKS FEEL LIKE THE

CHEF OF THEIR VERY OWN

RESTAURANT.

THE CONSTRUCTION OF ONE OF THESE

DOUBLE-OVEN RANGES STARTS WITH A

BIG SHEET OF GALVANIZED STEEL.

A MACHINE FLIPS IT AND FEEDS IT

TO A PRESS.

THE PRESS FOLDS THE SHEET TWICE

TO MAKE THE OVEN WALLS, CLOSING

IT AROUND THE FRAMEWORK.

THE OVEN BOTTOM IS PLACED INTO

POSITION, AND AUTOMATED WELDERS

FUSE EVERYTHING TOGETHER.

THE BACK SECTION GOES ON NEXT.

THOSE HOLES ARE FOR THE OVEN'S

FAN.

THE OVEN SHELL GETS A PORCELAIN

FINISH ON THE INSIDE, AND THEN

THE HEATING ELEMENT GOES IN.

FANS ARE FITTED INTO THOSE

PRECUT HOLES.

MORE HEATING ELEMENTS RUN ALONG

THEIR PERIMETERS.

THE OVEN IS THEN WRAPPED WITH

SYNTHETIC INSULATION TO KEEP IT

FROM SCORCHING NEARBY CABINETRY.

SIDE PANELS COVER THE INSULATION

AND HELP SUPPORT THE OVEN'S

STRUCTURE.

THIS PIECE OF STEEL WILL

REINFORCE THE RANGE BOTTOM.

SEVERAL FEET ARE ATTACHED.

THE FRONT ONES HAVE WHEELS SO

THE RANGE CAN BE MOVED WITHOUT

TEARING UP THE FLOOR.

WORKERS CUSHION IT WITH PACKING

FOAM, FLIP IT, AND HOIST THE

OVEN ONTO IT, NEXT TO A SMALLER

SECOND OVEN THAT'S PART OF THIS

DOUBLE-OVEN RANGE.

NEXT, A TECHNICIAN HOOKS UP THE

MICROPROCESSOR BOARD THAT

CONTROLS EVERYTHING FROM THE

OVEN'S FANS TO THEIR TIMERS.

AND ALL OF THAT WIRING NEEDS TO

BE DOUBLE-CHECKED.

ON THIS RANGE, THE BURNERS ARE

FUELED BY GAS.

THIS ELECTRICAL BOARD WILL SENSE

GAS-FLOW PROBLEMS.

WORKERS ASSEMBLE THE IGNITER

BOXES THAT WILL SPARK THE

BURNER'S FLAMES...

THEN MOUNT THEM ON THE COOKTOP.

AFTER INSTALLING THE GAS VALVES

ON THE FRAMEWORK...

THEY SLIDE CONNECTORS ONTO SOME

GAS LINES AND ATTACH THEM TO THE

VALVES.

ON THIS UPSCALE COOKTOP, THERE

ARE TWO GAS LINES FOR EVERY

KNOB -- ONE FOR A LOW FLAME, AND

THE OTHER FOR A HIGH FLAME.

WITH THE INSTALLATION OF THE

BURNERS AND THE PORCELAIN DRIP

PAN...

THE COOKTOP IS NOW READY TO BE

LOWERED ONTO THE OVEN.

THIS IS WHERE THE KNOBS FIT.

IT'S CALLED A BULLNOSE, AND IT'S

A BIT OF A SHOWPIECE.

SO, WORKERS GRIND AND POLISH IT

TO GIVE IT A GLEAMING FINISH

WITH NO SHARP EDGES.

FOR HANDLING PURPOSES, THE

BULLNOSE IS PROTECTED WITH

PLASTIC.

THIS MACHINE PUNCHES AND BENDS

THE EDGES OF PANELS SO

THEY CAN BE ATTACHED TO THE

SIDES OF THE RANGE.

AT ANOTHER STATION, THE OVEN

DOORS GET A GOOD BUFFING SO

THEY'LL MATCH THE SHINY

BULLNOSE.

WITH THE SIDE PANELS AND DOORS

ATTACHED, ALL THAT'S LEFT ARE A

FEW MORE FINISHING TOUCHES, AND

THE FINAL PRODUCT IS READY TO BE

FIRED UP.

COMING UP, AN ART FORM WHERE

EVERY SECOND COUNTS.

>> Narrator: CARVING CANDLES IS

AN OLD GERMAN CRAFT STILL

PRACTICED BY ARTISANS.

IT INVOLVES LAYERING

DIFFERENT-COLORED WAX...

THEN CARVING DESIGNS TO EXPOSE

THOSE LUMINOUS COLORS.

IT'S HARD TO BEAT THE RADIANT

BEAUTY OF A CARVED CANDLE.

CARVED CANDLES ARE KNOWN FOR

THEIR SWIRLS AND CURLS, A LOOK

SO ELABORATE THAT LIGHTING ONE

IS AN OCCASION IN ITSELF.

THE PROCESS STARTS WITH VATS OF

HOT WAX IN VARIOUS COLORS.

THE CANDLEMAKER STIRS THEM TO

CIRCULATE THE SPECIALLY

FORMULATED DYES.

SHE DIPS A STAR-SHAPED WAX CORE

INTO CLEAR WAX AND THEN YELLOW.

THE CLEAR WAX DILUTES WHATEVER

COLOR WAX FOLLOWS IT.

THE LAYERS ARE HARDENED IN COOL

WATER.

SHE REPEATS THIS PROCESS BETWEEN

30 AND 35 TIMES, BUILDING UP

DIFFERENT-COLORED LAYERS ON THE

CANDLE CORE.

AS THE DIPPING CONTINUES, THE

CANDLE BECOMES WARMER AND

SOFTER, WHICH WILL ALLOW IT TO

BE CARVED.

THE QUICK WATER DIPS ONLY COOL

THE OUTER LAYERS.

PARTWAY INTO THE DIPPING, THE

CANDLEMAKER DEEPENS THE CANDLE'S

GROOVES.

AND SHE RESUMES DIPPING, SHE HAS

TO KEEP A CLOSE WATCH ON THE

CANDLE'S TEMPERATURE.

IF IT ABSORBS TOO MUCH HEAT, IT

WILL BE TOO SOFT TO CARVE.

BUT IF IT'S TOO COOL, THE WAX

CAN SPLINTER.

ACHIEVING THE RIGHT CONSISTENCY

IS CRUCIAL.

IT'S ALMOST TIME TO GET CARVING.

BUT FIRST, THE CANDLEMAKER

SQUEEZES THE DRIPPINGS

TOGETHER....

AND SLICES THEM OFF.

THEY'RE TOO ATTRACTIVE TO WASTE,

SO SHE QUICKLY SHAPES THEM INTO

A MUSHROOM CANDLE.

SHE POKES A HOLE IN THE CENTER

FOR THE WICK, AND, WITHIN

MOMENTS, THE CANDLE IS COMPLETE.

WITH THE BIG CANDLE AT THE

PERFECT TEMPERATURE, THE CLOCK

IS TICKING.

IT HAS TO BE CARVED IN JUST 15

MINUTES, OR IT WILL BE TOO HARD

TO WORK WITH.

THE CANDLEMAKER SLIVERS THE

BOTTOM AND CURLS THE PIECES

BACK.

SHE DUNKS THE ROW OF CURLS INTO

WATER TO HARDEN THEM A BIT SO

THEY DON'T SAG.

ON THE SECOND ROW, SHE CURLS

EACH ROW IN THE OPPOSITE

DIRECTION TO THE ONE BEFORE.

SHE CARVES A TOTAL OF FOUR ROWS,

WITH THE LAST CURLS FIXED

UPRIGHT.

USING THE SQUARE-EDGED GOUGING

TOOL, SHE CUTS A WINDMILL DESIGN

INTO THE UPPER SECTION OF THE

CANDLE.

THEN SHE SHAPES THE WAX CUTOUT

INTO A BASE FOR THE WINDMILL.

TULIPS AND OTHER DESIGNS

DECORATE THE TOP OF THE CANDLE.

SHE MUST WORK WITH A QUICK BUT

STEADY HAND.

IT TAKES AT LEAST A YEAR OF

TRAINING TO LEARN TO CARVE WITH

SUCH CONFIDENCE.

THIS ONE IS A NEAT TRICK.

SHE JIGGLES THE STRAIGHT-BLADED

KNIFE TO CUT THE FLUTED EDGE OF

A HUMMINGBIRD WING.

ONE LAST CHARACTER, AND THIS

CARVING JOB IS COMPLETE.

NOW SHE PRESSES A

COOKIE-CUTTER-LIKE DEVICE AROUND

THE WICK.

THIS FORMS A WELL THAT WILL

ALLOW THE WAX TO BURN DOWN THE

CENTER INSTEAD OF DRIPPING DOWN

THE SIDES, WHICH WOULD RUIN THE

CARVING.

SHE SPINS THE CANDLE IN A HOT

PAN TO MELT THE BOTTOM SO THAT

IT'S LEVEL.

AND WHILE IT'S STILL HOT, SHE

ATTACHES THE COMPANY STICKER.

FINALLY, AN ACRYLIC GLAZE SEALS

THE CANDLE'S DECORATIONS AND

PROTECTS THE FINISH.

ONCE LIT, THE LIGHT FROM THE

CLEAR CORE SHINES THROUGH THE

DESIGN FOR A REAL GLOWING

BEAUTY.

WHEN WE RETURN, A GAMBLER'S

DREAM COME TRUE -- PEEKING

INSIDE A SLOT MACHINE.

>> Narrator: A SAN FRANCISCO CAR

MECHANIC INVENTED THE FIRST SLOT

MACHINE IN 1895.

ITS HEAVY CAST-IRON CABINET

HOUSED THREE SPINNING REELS.

EACH ONE HAD 20 PLAYING-CARD

SYMBOLS AND AN IMAGE OF

PHILADELPHIA'S FAMOUS LIBERTY

BELL.

IF YOU WERE LUCKY ENOUGH TO

LINE UP THREE BELLS IN A ROW,

YOU WON THE BIG JACKPOT --

50 CENTS.

TODAY'S SLOT MACHINES HAVE COME

A LONG WAY.

THEY'VE GOT COMPUTERS FOR BRAINS

AND ENDLESS THEMES AND

CONFIGURATIONS ALL PACKAGED IN A

LIGHT-WEIGHT SHEET-METAL

CABINET.

WORKERS FIRST ASSEMBLE WHAT'S

CALLED THE BULKHEAD, THE UPPER

PART OF THE CABINET THAT

CONTAINS ALL THE GAME-PLAYING

COMPONENTS, SUCH AS THE AUDIO

AMPLIFIER...

THE CIRCUIT BOARDS...

THE SPEAKERS...

AND WHAT'S KNOWN AS THE METER,

THE ELECTROMAGNETICAL COUNTER

THAT KEEPS TRACK OF THE COINS

AND CREDIT GOING IN AND OUT OF

THE MACHINE.

AT THE BASE OF THE CABINET, THE

MACHINE GETS A SERIAL NUMBER, AS

REQUIRED BY LAW.

WORKERS INSTALL THE MACHINE'S

BILL ACCEPTOR, THEN THE TICKET

PRINTER.

WHEN THERE'S A WIN, IT SPITS OUT

A VOUCHER THAT THE PLAYERS CAN

REDEEM FOR CASH, OR INSERT IN

ANY MACHINE'S BILL-COLLECTOR

SLOT.

NEXT COMES THE ARM MECHANISM

PLAYERS PULL TO SPIN THE REELS,

THEN THE UPPER DOOR THAT FRAMES

THE REELS AND THE LOWER DOOR

THAT FRAMES THE BUTTON PANEL.

SLOT MACHINES HAVE SEVERAL

ILLUMINATED BUTTONS FOR

DIFFERENT TYPES OF BETS.

WORKERS PLUG A TINY L.E.D.

BEHIND EACH BUTTON, THEN WIRE

UP THE PANEL.

A PLASTIC INSERT LABELS EACH

BUTTON.

ONCE THE PANEL IS ASSEMBLED,

IT'S INSTALLED IN THE LOWER

DOOR.

WORKERS NOW TURN THEIR ATTENTION

TO THE METAL PANEL THAT

ACCOMMODATES THE SPINNING REELS.

ON THE BACK, THEY INSTALL TWO

CIRCUIT BOARDS -- ONE TO OPERATE

THE MACHINE'S DIGITAL

SCOREBOARD, THE OTHER TO

ILLUMINATE THE REELS.

THEN THEY COVER THE PANEL WITH

SPECIAL GLASS.

IT'S BEEN TREATED WITH A

CHEMICAL THAT CONDUCTS

ELECTRICITY.

SHOULD A CHEATER TRY TO RIG THE

REELS USING AN ELECTRONIC

GADGET, THIS GLASS WILL GROUND

THE CHARGE.

A DECORATIVE WINDOW GOES OVER

THE ANTI-TAMPERING GLASS.

THEN WORKERS PLACE THE WHOLE

UNIT INTO THE UPPER DOOR.

IN THE LOWER DOOR, THEY INSTALL

A TOUCH-SCREEN VIDEO MONITOR TO

DISPLAY THE PAYOUT INFORMATION.

CASINO TECHNICIANS ALSO USE

IT TO CONFIGURE THE MACHINE.

THEN WORKERS INSTALL PANELS WITH

SLOTS FOR RECEIVING TICKETS AND

FOR INSERTING EITHER MONEY OR

DEBIT CARDS.

AND NOW FOR THE SLOT MACHINE'S

MOST FAMOUS FEATURE -- THE

REELS.

AFTER A MACHINE TESTS THE

SPINNING MOTION AND LIGHTS, A

WORKER ATTACHES A PLASTIC STRIP

WITH PRINTED SYMBOLS -- 18 TO 22

SYMBOLS PER REEL.

THE REELS EASILY SNAP INTO A

WAITING ELECTRICAL CONNECTION.

NEXT COMES WHAT'S CALLED THE

TOP BOX.

WORKERS MOUNT IT ONTO THE

BULKHEAD, THEN INSTALL

FLUORESCENT BULBS.

THESE WILL LIGHT UP THE

EYE-CATCHING ARTWORK ON THE

GLASS FRONT OF THE BOX.

NEARING COMPLETION, THE SLOT

MACHINE IS FINALLY READY TO

RECEIVE ITS BRAIN -- AN INTERNAL

COMPUTER WITH ITS OPERATING

SYSTEM ON A PROGRAMMABLE

MICROCHIP.

THE SOFTWARE THAT RUNS THE GAME

IS INSTALLED ON A MEMORY CARD.

IT RANDOMLY DETERMINES THE

COURSE OF PLAY WITHIN DEFINED

PARAMETERS.

ESSENTIALLY, IT'S PREPROGRAMMED

TO PAY OUT A CERTAIN AMOUNT AT

RANDOM INTERVALS OVER A GIVEN

PERIOD OF TIME.

BUT LESS MONEY, OF COURSE, THAN

THE MACHINE TAKES IN OVERALL.

BEFORE EMBARKING ON ITS SPINNING

SPREE, EACH SLOT MACHINE

UNDERGOES EXTENSIVE

QUALITY-CONTROL TESTING.

CASINOS DEMAND THAT THESE

ONE-ARMED BANDITS ARE DURABLE

AND RELIABLE BECAUSE SLOTS

GENERATE MORE THAN TWO-THIRDS OF

CASINO REVENUES.

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COMMUNICATIONS, LLC

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