David began by telling of communications before the time of the Royal Signals when communications were accomplished by means other than electronics. These included carrier pigeons, flags, smoke and lights from fires and reflections of the sun. In 1830 the first electric telegraph by Wheatstone and Cook was in use, although In 1753 an anonymous writer in the Scots Magazine suggested an electrostatic telegraph, it was not followed up. Further inventions in electrics and magnetism led to better methods of communications using multiple wires through to the receivers.
David detailed the progress of electronic communications by wireless brought about by Marconi, the GPO and the Military including the many types of sets used during the First World War till it’s end.
Andy, G8ATD told members the first Jukeboxes appeared in the UK in 1953 when a London manufacturer, who had an agreement with the US owner, began building them here. The UK government’s import restrictions meant that items from abroad could be sold only if their content produced here was 53% or greater. The overall appearance was, however, the same on both sides of the Atlantic. Andy said it was the working mechanism on show in the BAL-AMI Junior, introduced in 1956, that first caught his eye when he was very young and that is the unit he has restored.
Almost all of Andy’s restorations now are, however, confined to the amplifiers. He explained he wanted to keep as many parts as possible, but some which had been stressed by high voltage or age simply couldn’t be reused. Replacement parts were made to look like the originals, if possible. It was apparent that Andy’s electronic experience stood him in good stead since the building methods used in the 50s certainly don’t stand up to today’s standards.
It looks like some publicity for the sale had paid off, nearly half of those attending were visitors! Although there were fewer items on offer, the quality seemed to be higher. The ‘star’ of the sale was the 25 Amp Variac in working condition that sold for less then a quarter of the usual price offered for new on line. No doubt the new are built down to a lower standard, as well. Also featured were two laptops in working order with carrying cases and power supplies. Definitely a bargain!
All who attended were treated to free tea and biscuits and it was agreed that It was a good evening to meet and chat with old friends.
Don, G4LOO started by looking back at last year. Details of who won in our division and their score was examined. How did we do? We were third out of seven entries! Details of how points were lost and what to look out for when logging this year were discussed.
Don then went on to bring members up to date with the rigs and antennas to be used, including a new antenna for receive only.
Setting up will start on Friday, 23 Oct at 10:00 am BST. Please remember to bring some tools, your hard hat, if you have one, and also a 2m handheld for communicating up and down the field. Also, as in the past, remember to bring your own cup and plate with eating irons. Don’t forget we will also need to take down and pack away the antennas on Monday morning starting at 10:00.
It won’t be long till the launch of the next club project. This kit will build into a Data Interface complete with isolation transformers and serial/USB rig connection. Also included with the kit will be a CD with helpful info about the kit and data transmissions in general. This is a members only project.
Steve told of his route through the years that brought him to his involvement in presenting discos and broadcast radio. It all started when he was ten years old and went to his first disco. He was very impressed with the lights and music and felt this was something he wanted to do. At fourteen he teamed up with a friend and built some equipment to be used in his own light show. Steve told of the turntable and mixing decks development through the years and how they have made the job easier and more enjoyable for those at discos. The latest digital mixing decks are able to play MP3, CD and music from memory sticks.
Steve doesn’t get involved in running discos now, but what he learned through the years stands him in good stead for his music show at Radio Peterborough.