Major task for the day was reinstating the Ward Leonards on their shelf at the rear of the T86 cabin. Not a straight forward task in the cramped conditions of the hangar but the team managed it. The Ward Leonards are very heavy so a lot of care was needed with lifting and moving. See the accompanying photo of the Ward Leonards back on their shelf.
Once on the shelf the wiring was reconnected. Two additional photos show the bearing Ward Leonard pre restoration and after remounting yesterday.
Other work carried out on the T86 was further preparation of the internal wall ready for a repaint.
The Engagement Controller’s door and both door frames have been primed ready for a top coat.
Some pictures of Bloodhound Mk1 at RAF Rattlesden have been kindly provided by Chris Andrews and appear on our web site at: RAF Rattlesden.
A short story about his father, Terry Andrews whose service in the RAF included several postings on Bloodhound, can be found here: Terry Andrews
Painting of the Ward Leonard cable brackets carried out. The two sprit levels attached front and back to the radar chassis, have been dismantled for refurbishing off site. See below.
The inside of the E.C.’s door and both LCP door frames have been rubbed down and prepared for a repaint.
Testing of some spare Argus boards was carried out with mixed results, serviceable spares for the Argus are always a concern. Current backups of the LCP software were made without any issues.
Away from Cosford
The T86 waveguide desiccators have been refurbished which included new seals and a repaint. See accompanying photo. The requirement for new seals is a measure to prevent water ingress, a key objective of our restoration programme.
Besides the on-going painting on the rear of the T86 cabin which is now almost complete many other refurbishment activities have been taking place, several away from the Cosford site. The accompanying photos show some examples, a refurbishment of a T86 door buffer,
new fabricated replacements for cable support brackets
and vehicle reflectors.
The original cable support brackets were beyond refurbishment as can be seen, the reflectors were manufactured by 3D printing as replacements were not available. A total of twenty two reflectors have been manufactured for the T86 and LCP.
The main LCP door received its final top coat of Deep Bronze Green, its original colour, the ‘wear and tear’ dinks and dents from the years in service have been left.
After testing the ‘unserviceable’ Instructor’s keyboard off-site it was refitted to the display console in the LCP and worked perfectly! A ‘no fault found’ occasion; it originally stopped working, was removed for testing, no fault found, replaced in the LCP and it works!
Away from Cosford
Various Farnell G Series power supplies are used on test rigs and also act of spares for the LCP. One of the test rig power supplies went up in smoke last week, nothing serious just the usual RIFA filter capacitor.
This was an event that takes us back to when the refurbishing and repair of the Bloodhound simulator started. Before we could power up the computer, I/O systems and display console a total of fifteen Farnell power supplies had to have all their RIFA capacitors changed, otherwise they would all go up in smoke. A total of ninety capacitors were changed; access was not at all easy!
T86 and LCP
A day for internal doors surfaces. Two accompanying photos, one on the part finished main LCP door and the second, one of the double opening T86 doors.
The LCP door received its first top coat of paint after preparation but the main challenge was replacing the numerous self-tapping screws that held the internal door skin in place (perhaps the many years of opening and closing the door shook them all out). The internal skin of the T86 door was in a ‘well used’ condition as over the years numerous holes were created to hold various fittings and brackets. All defunct fittings removed which meant a lot of hole filling before a two coats of paint were applied getting the internal surface back to an A1 condition.
Yet more painting on the rear cabin wall of the T86 in preparation of re fitting the Ward Leonards.
The LCP (simulator) remains serviceable, excepting the Instructors keyboard. Last week the keyboard was removed for testing. Yesterday the Technical Supervisor’s keyboard was plugged in to the Instructor’s keyboard plug and it worked fine, confirming a dead Instructor’s keyboard. The Instructor’s keyboard has now been tested off site and no fault found!!!
We have received a donation of an original Ferranti degaussing wand. The wand will be put to good use as one of the display monitors has a definite orange tint in one corner.
Some of the T86 Radar equipment labels were badly corroded for which I devised a restoration method.
Orginally the markings were mechanically engraved through a black anodised finish.Not having access to either of these technologies I chose laser engraving with a 2.5W laser diode mounted on a two axis platform and gantry.
To preserve the original appearance I sanded a clean surface of the rear of each label, white primed with an enamel and matt black top coat. The laser cuts easily through the black but is reflected by the white so is not even marked. Here are the first four labels completed.
The pressure is on to complete the refurbishment of the Ward Leonards and their mounting shelf on the rear of the cabin, plus various fittings. I say pressure purely because there are lots of other tasks waiting. The accompanying photo show the various Ward Leonard items receiving a sprayed top coat of Deep Bronze Green paint. The elevation Ward Leonard has also received a final top coat.
Further painting of the Ward Leonard shelves and the underside of the Ward Leonard trays carried out. See accompanying photo.
T86 away from Cosford
A new ‘War Alarm’ is now ready for refitting. The baffle in the original alarm mechanism was completely corroded away. A ‘replacement klaxon has been sourced and the unit completed using the original mountings. The replacement war alarm klaxon has a horn, the original didn’t. The horn will be retained as it adds to the weather protection for the Klaxon assembly. The plan is to operate the war alarm as and when during demonstrations. See accompanying photo of the refurbished war alarm. The war alarm is mounted under the Ward Leonard shelf. It was never used in operational service, thank goodness.
The LCP was run up and checked out OK. During the previous week a key on the Instructors keyboard was found to be not working so the keyboard has been removed for checks. See accompanying photo.