Wartime radar

4th February 2008, 20:39
When I joined the P&O Karmala in December 1953,as 4th Mate, a wartime radar set was fitted. Was it designated a type 681? It was unitized, in that various component parts could be slid out of the main casing. It took 15 minutes to get going. The air in the wave guide had to dried first and from then on various parts did their thing.Warmed up, perhaps? As I remember it the 9 inch PPI in the chartroom was adjusted using the controls on the A scan monitor in the radar room.

Can anyone confirm this,please.

5th February 2008, 01:12
I sailed on the Brocklebanks' Maihar about 1960.

It had the radar you describe but I believe it was a 268 not a 681

The radar was in the wheel house, but the controls as you say were in a radar room and required the radio operator to be called out to change range.

No VRM only fixed range rings.

There must be one in a museum somewhere.

Interesting how these old pieces of equipment carry on as I was just informed that the all the bells and whistles radars we bought six years ago are beyond repair as parts are no longer available.


Ron Stringer
5th February 2008, 09:09
The most common Admiralty pattern radar, that survived for long after the war on some British ships, was the type 268. I never came across either of the other two types mentioned.

5th February 2008, 12:58
I'll correct my post to 268 that does trigger my memory after 48 years


Harry Nicholson
5th February 2008, 22:22
I took the MOT Radar ticket in 1956 at South Shields MN College. The radar was the 268... built in wartime by Canadian Marconi I was told. It had interesting parts... a carbon pile to control voltage and strings of baretters to control current. It was grey, like most things then.

bert thompson
6th February 2008, 09:16
Sat my MOT Radar Ticket at Leith Nautical on Friday the 13th of November 1950. The Radar was Type 268. Can't remember there being a PPI but do remember all the delays in getting it going. At that time the College had a Cossor Radar in a small classroom inside the docks somewhere. Mr Bogie was the Instructor. Ticket number was 401. Happy times

King Ratt
6th February 2008, 13:18
Andrew Bogie, brilliant lecturer. Did my BoT Radar with him in 1963.

King Ratt
6th February 2008, 16:56
When I went to Leith in 1961 the lineup was Andrew Bogie, Harry Watson, Fred Boettcher and Ted Whitehead.Ted passed away quite suddenly around 1969/1970. He was quite a character who smoked constantly, was fond of a Bass or two and who always used "Clan Mciver" as his ship name for R/T procedure.
Damn good instructors, all of 'em.

King Ratt
6th February 2008, 19:22
R651400. We had the same team then. I used to go for a pint or two with Ted Whitehead on visits to the college during leave. Poor fellow never got a chance to enjoy retirement. Yes he was on GBTT for a while.

Ron Stringer
6th February 2008, 21:28
I took the MOT Radar ticket in 1956 at South Shields MN College.


Was Jimmy Doig running the radar courses then?

19th April 2008, 09:18
One day,approaching the Dover Strait from off Folkestone, aboard a Norwegian vessel, in poor visibility, I was trying to track the various crossing vessels using the reflection plotter but found it difficult as some of the bulbs in the periphery didn't seem to be working. After passing the South Foreland, the visibility improved so much, as it often did, that the radar was not necessary and the officer on watch with me unscrewed the plotter and found that all the bulbs were working but the underside was thickly covered in dust. The improvement was dramatic, so much so that when the Master came up he was quite overcome and wondered how it had happened. Was this a unique occurrence?

Thanks to all for correcting my memory regarding the wartime radar, 268 not 681. But where did the number come from? Perhaps a bit like WD40 - the 40th attempt to make a water drying compound?

Tai Pan
19th April 2008, 10:07
268 Radar was I believe an submarine detection radar. 1st ship had one, Isle of Jersey. 1st time I was asked to switch it on was approaaching Guernsey, when I finally got it going, I reported to the brisge, only to find it empty, we had been alongside 10 minutes.

19th April 2008, 13:59
I recall doing my RN, RP3 (Radar/Plotting) course in early 50's and our first introduction to a radar set was the Type 281, metric radar, double dipole type antenna. Like something out of Dr Who. The actual set itself had its own room and was surrounded by a wire mesh barrier, with access by key only if you had someone with you. The entire space seemed to be full of glowing fizzing, buzzing glass tubes of various enormous sizes. I was so impressed by this monster that I successfully avoided ever having to go near the darned thing, either during training or later at sea. Shortly after that, the Type 293 centimetric became the standard general use radar in the RN and not long after that the Decca Type 974 became the standard navigational radar.