Out with the begging bowl!

I have a request for donations of obsolete items that folk may have squirrelled away. The specific items needed to maintain the Argus 700 are as follows:
Archive 2060L QIC02 60MB Tape Drive
Archive 2150L QIC02 150MB Tape Drive
Also iterested in any other 60Mb/150M QIC-02 tape drive
DC600 1/4″ Tapes
DC6150 1/4″ Tapes
Seagate Hawk ST31200N 1.2Gb Winchester Disk
Seagate Hawk ST31230N 1.05GB Winchester Disk
Seagate Barracuda ST32171N 2.6Gb Winchester Disk
Also interested in any SCSI-2 (50 Pin) Winchester Disk with capacity 1Gb to 4 Gb
The Argus uses a wealth of 74 series TTL devices and we are wanting to ensure we have a good stock so please dig deep and help us to maintain the kit.

Open Day 24th September

There were five team members present, Neal Cartman, Pete Harry, Dave  Scobbie, Richard Vernon and myself – Mike Strange. Our visitors comprised  13 ex-Ferranti, ex-RAF and friends together with 25 members of the Computer  Conservation Society.

Pete Harry’s presentations and Neal’s demonstration in the LCP were very  well received with the CCS being particualrly impressed by the BMPG’s dedication and enthusiasm with the project. It was also an opportunity for  old friends to meet up after 26 years.

The LCP remained fully serviceable throughout the entire day.

Thank you to all who visited and your interest which made our day so rewarding.

Work Day 17th September

Pete H. finished Neil’s paint removal on the front of the LCP cabin, apart from a few rivet heads which he will finish on the next working session. Also started priming the fittings on the front of the cabin. The plan after all the paint is removed is to renovate some of the many repairs on the front of the cabin, rub down and prime. The E.C.’s door is being left green until we decide what to do re the window seal.


Work Day 10th September

The monitor that went U/S on the previous Saturday has now been repaired and is back in the display console. We did have some problems with this monitor previously with varying brilliance and colour balance. Following the repair these problems no longer occur, the display quality of this monitor is good, after a short warm up period. The fault with the monitor was a short circuit diode on the power supply’s bridge rectifier. While on the subject of monitors there are a couple of jobs to do as the vertical sync ‘wanders’ on the Tech. Sup’s display and the vertical sync also loses lock and the screen scrolls for a few minutes after switch on before settling down. Suspected setting up issues.

Thoughts and some action continues on the internal lights of the LCP cabin. The original light fittings are obsolete and inefficient, never mind that the wire wound choke gets hot and is a potential fire risk as it ages. Not a good position to be in as the chokes are contained within the cabin’s ceiling void. The plan is to replace the lights with a ‘look alike’ LED fitting or use the existing fittings and rebuild with LED lighting components. The main problem with using the existing light fittings is the need to replace most of the light diffusers which are either missing or cracked. The diffusers are very obsolete items, how we can make our own is the question.

The paint scraping of the LCP cabin walls is almost complete, just one more session needed according to Neil who is now our ‘expert’ paint scraper. In removing paint we have not only exposed the 41 Sqn badge on the escape door but also the extent of damage to the cabin received over its years in service. Obviously a lot of dents and gouges have been inflicted on the cabin. Much of the original dent filling now needs some re filling and/or repairing. A job which started on Saturday. Pete M carried on with priming roof catches and corrosion treating those catches recently cleaned of paint. Completed cable ducts and plug covers are now looking good after restoration. We also hung a 41 Sqn badge on the cabin end as a replacement for the badge that was eliminated during paint removal.

LCP Cabin Corrosion Treatment.jpg       LCP Cabin Damage 1.jpg

LCP Cabin Damage 2.jpg

LCP Cabin End 41 Sqn.jpg

LCP Cabin Refurb Cable Outlets.jpg

The simulator remains serviceable but requires some monitor setting up as described.

Work Day 3rd September

More on scraping and painting. Neil made good progress on the front of the cabin and in his words, ‘it should only take a couple more sessions to finish’, the front of the cabin that is.


I continued with repainting the cable ducts, finishing some work on the right hand side of the cabin and importantly starting the painting of the cable ducts on the left hand side.


Work also progressed on refurbishing the covers for the cable ducts. A set of covers were previously recovered from a derelict LCP and it is salvaging fittings from these that allow us to carry out repairs and replace such things as broken spring clips and catches.

LCP Cable Duct Covers 1 wm.jpg

Overall, the cabin repaint is progressing well and we look forward to the easy bit – applying the NATO green top coat. Military vehicle restorers use a 4” roller to apply top coats so we will do the same. As the LCP cabin is starting to be repainted its appearance looks to fully justify the repaint on which for the team has spent all summer on.

The Instructor’s and Tech. Sup’s keyboards were refitted and their appearance is much improved as the grime accumulated over the years has been removed.

Inst and TS Keyboards wm.jpg

A discussion on the LCP’s internal lighting has taken place. The original fluorescent tube lighting is energy hungry, runs hot (especially the ballast chokes) and needs updating. The appearance will stay as original but the tubes, ballasts  and starters will be replaced with a modern equivalent.  Our LCP cabin lights had two styles of diffuser fitted, plus several were missing. If anyone has experience of moulding plastic/acetate sheet into a curved profile with a closed end, please get in touch. The light fittings will need removing and refurbished over the coming winter.

LCP Light Fitting 1 wm.jpg

LCP Light Diffuser 2 wm.jpg

Light measurements are:

  • Hole in roof for fitting: Length 603mm x width 80mm
  • Protrusion of tube from roof line is 43mm
  • Diffuser is therefore 606mm long, 102mm wide and 43mm deep

The simulator had its weekly run and while the LCP is ‘operational’ the instructors monitor has gone U/S as it blows its mains fuse at switch on. The monitor has been removed for fault finding in the hope that the fault is caused by something replaceable rather than a non-available and obsolete part. You will be kept informed on progress re repairing the monitor.

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