There was a major upgrade in 1983 that included a new control system, new sound system, and additional speakers and houses.
New computer control system 1983. Used a Radio Shack (Tandy) TRS-80 to create the choreographed programs.
The music and control channels were recorded via modem to a 4 channel reel-to-reel tape recorder.
Two channels for music, one channel for a timing reference signal, and one channel for ASCII (text) commands to the PLC to change water levels and lighting. The PLC “listened” to the tape via a modem and an ASCII interface module.
PLC upgrade 1983. Allen-Bradley PLC-2/30
Before this upgrade the control system was a paper punched tape and a custom wired wrapped relay panel.
Overview of the fountain. Picture taken for Press Day 1983.
Notice the banks of incandescent lights to illuminate the water modules.
These used aircraft runway lights and colored (red, blue, & amber) filters in front of them.
The three banks of lights in front of each of the seven water modules were replaced with two LED units per water module in 2013.
Amplifiers upgrade in 1983. Ten 800 watt amplifiers. 8000 watts total.
Fountain founder, Dr. William Creason, in front of new speaker house. 1983
New speaker buildings and speakers were added to serve the water front north and south of the grandstand.
View of speaker houses, the Grand River, the grandstand (directly across the river), and the main street of Grand Haven.
Here you can see the new speaker houses (left and right). The existing (1962) speaker house is in the middle.
Pump room 1983. Original water pumps and Allis-Chambers motors.
One 100 HP, one 75 HP, and one 50 HP.
More information is available in this 1983 Press Day document.
An article that made the cover of “PLC the User Magazine” in 1987.
A tribute to the founder of the fountain, Dr. William Creason.
(Oct. 16, 1987)