The array of avionics on the ‘flight deck’ is an operational group of equipment that is part of my personal collection.
It includes MF, HF, and VHF communications suites, LF/MF
navigation receivers, and ECM gear used on US Navy, AAC, and AAF aircraft during World War II.
Basic layout of the flight deck
here. The cutoff date for
inclusion on the flight deck was arbitrarily selected as Service nomenclature “type issuance”
prior to September 1945 - actual production in a couple of cases may have been a few years
later. The selection criterion has no technological basis - it simply allows everything to be squeezed
into one 15'x15' space.
Also located on the flight deck, this is an overview of the common and not so common surveillance, analysis,
and jamming equipment used in US aircraft during the war. It represents an explosion in
technology, arguably never equaled since that time. Much of it is still useful in AM and DSBRC work on the radio amateur bands,
with minor reversible modifications or outboard ‘helping hands’.
Defying the boundaries of reason, the Smithsonian - clearly in a moment of temporary insanity - permitted me
to wander onto their property as a volunteer. This page delves into their misfortunes ever since.
Many of the image files are fairly large (200-300kB each) to provide the resolution needed for magnification with
browsers that offer such capabilities, like Firefox or Opera. That may affect the loading time, depending on your
individual connection speed. The pages are best viewed at a display resolution of 1024x768 and are optimized for
Firefox. However, all links should still be viewable at lower settings and with all the common browsers. I would
appreciate reporting any problems so that I can fix them.
I originally had a revision history log beneath this point for major additions. Given the fact that I spend an average
of an hour each week inserting minor additions, the web page keeps changing and growing on a regular basis. Rather than
listing the major changes below, I will simply post them here as they occur.
Be aware that absence of a recent date does not mean that changes have not been made...just that they do not meet the subjective threshold for "major change."
I understand that with a somewhat arcane interest like this one, folks often wonder where I originally managed to obtain the
equipment and what more I might actually need to complete various sets, so a number of friends have persuaded me to publish
a "wish list". It is difficult
to characterize my original sources, and they have changed over time - they run the gamut from hamfests, to friends,
to surplus houses, to estate sales, to referrals, to eBay, to you name it... If I had to characterize the greatest
contributors, it has to be friends and acquaintances who apparently understand the restoration affliction and are willing
to support it. Not quite a twelve step program, but there are similarities...