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So what did you fix it with?

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  #26  
Old 8th March 2011, 22:41
radiotech radiotech is offline  
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So many ! Start with the first two. Leknes 1970, problem talkback system bridge-engineroom, signal-to-noise from engine room too high. Solution reduce sensitivity of engine room mic, this was done by a relay so when e/room talked it reduced sensitivity. Worked a treat, I was so proud of this fix I drew the mod out on the back of a used chart, used all the space on the back of a chart !
C/E commmented how much I must wanted to be remembered !
Second, same ship; emergency rx failed, found screen resistor on I.F. valve open circuit - replaced - worked a treat.
At the time I was jnr R/O; Snr R/O was gob smacked - how did yo do that ? In fact it was pure logic fault finding training from Brunel. I always had a gift for fault finding but on same ship missed a msg from GKZ - my morse was my weakness, but it did get better!
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  #27  
Old 17th March 2011, 09:57
Graham P Powell Graham P Powell is offline  
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I heard about one BP tanker where the eht supply on the radar display broke down. The R/O on board ( Kelvin Hughes I think) used the eht supply from a TV to get it working again. Ingenious I thought.
rgds
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  #28  
Old 17th March 2011, 12:11
trotterdotpom trotterdotpom is offline  
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Well, you'd expect Kelvin to be pretty switched on I suppose. I didn't know he went to sea.

John T.
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  #29  
Old 17th March 2011, 12:13
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Originally Posted by trotterdotpom View Post
Well, you'd expect Kelvin to be pretty switched on I suppose. I didn't know he went to sea.

John T.
Who would look after the factory
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  #30  
Old 21st March 2011, 07:26
Baulkham Hills Baulkham Hills is offline  
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I was on an old wreck of a ship in the middle-east, there were quite a few a/c units onboard, two for the bridge and engine control room one for the officers mess and another for the crew mess all different makes.
The unit for the crew mess failed and after opening up the unit found the problem was a starting capacitor for the compressor which was totally destroyed.
Of course there were no spares and the shipowner would not supply spares because the ship was due for scrapping. I had a look around for something I could use to get the system working, the crew was really suffering in the heat. In the workshop there were drawers of spares for the fluorescent lighting, including dozens of small capacitors used for powerfactor in the fittings.
The maximum voltage of these capacitors was 600V which was ok for the a/c unit but obviously the capacity was too small.
I made up a pack of ten capacitors connected in parallel and tried in the unit. With a clampmeter I seen the current flowing through the capacitors was too small to start the compressor. I made up another ten and then another and finally ended up with about 35 capacitors all in parallel. Finally the compressor burst into life. Cooling down beautifully. It remained working until I paid off a few months later.
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  #31  
Old 27th March 2011, 14:13
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Robert Hilton Robert Hilton is offline  
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In the far off days when a weekend in port was not entirely unknown the coaster I was mate on the Sea Thames. The place was Whitstable and we had arrived with the auto pilot out of action. The master/owner, Hugh Williamson, had found a relay to be faulty, but with no detectable electrical fault. I said, "Then it must be mechanical."

Hugh went home for the weekend having called a technician to fix the auto pilot. When the technician arrived I pointed out the offending relay. It turned out that a steel rod about five inches long had broken in two.

The technician said a new relay would be needed to be sent from Germany. I said, "What about a new rod?" He said that would have to come from Germany too.

ME "What about a five inch nail?" TECH "Not hard enough."

So I got him to cut the blade off the appropriate sized good quality screwdriver which was perfect. He Proudly wrote on his repair report, "Spare obtained by cutting down screwdriver."
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  #32  
Old 5th April 2011, 23:47
freddythefrog freddythefrog is offline  
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Graham Powell
Yes the guy you mention about fixing the radar on a BP tanker with the EHT from the TV set was a KH R/O his name was Keith Roberts, a great guy, he also used to give me a lift home at weekends from courses in Hainault as we both lived up north. A great fix! cheers ftf
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  #33  
Old 10th March 2012, 22:26
harryredvers harryredvers is offline  
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In MIMCO I joined a Souter bulker (Sheaf Field) in Newport, Mon. c.1964-5 and crossed the Atlantic to load cargo in Victoria, Newfoundland (I think that's what the place was called - it was in a bay tucked round from St John's). During the crossing and round about the Grand Banks we became virtually becalmed in thick fog and drifted for about two days. The reason we drifted was because the radar packed up and the old man wouldn't proceed till he could see where he was going. It was autumn. I don't know what the iceberg situation is like in autumn or the likelihood of encountering any in those waters. I do remember big fishing boats, probably Russian factory ships, so there would probably have been a considerable risk of collision from them. So we floated waiting for the mist to clear, or the radar to work. I didn't have a radar ticket then so I don't imagine I did too much probing about. Mind you I did know why it wasn't working and i did tell him. So he blamed me for its defectiveness. I'd been there three weeks anyway. It was simple - the alternator wouldn't run. How did I fix it? I told the lecce and he gave it a look over. He told the chief, and he gave it a look over with the lecce. Then they stripped it down and the lecce took it below and skimmed the armature on a lathe. The lecce reassembled it and it worked. About two days and we got under way. Thirty minutes later we emerged from the fog. The Captain stopped blaming me when the lecce explained to him that there was no way I could have skimmed the armature - or was it the chief who told him? They had their meals separately on that ship - well the old man did, I'm not sure now about the chief.
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  #34  
Old 10th March 2012, 23:58
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Originally Posted by John Lyne View Post
While serving as the second mate on the Mobil Endeavour yonks ago we had a Captain ( Anthony was it ?) who would insist on the radat scanner being aligned athwartships when not in use...................
Like the Mate I sailed with during my apprenticeship who made us scrape the paint off then polish the DF Loop. Nothing like getting your priorities right.
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  #35  
Old 11th March 2012, 10:59
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Like the Mate I sailed with during my apprenticeship who made us scrape the paint off then polish the DF Loop. Nothing like getting your priorities right.
He was right - any paint on the insulator shim that separated the loops from the base assembly would have rendered any bearings completely useless.

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  #36  
Old 12th March 2012, 20:34
harryredvers harryredvers is offline  
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Nr.36
wrt. ps: In what way?
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  #37  
Old 12th March 2012, 21:25
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ps Seems to be a bit of elitism crept on to the forum with "Super Sparks!"
Nr.36
wrt. ps: In what way?


Yes indeed, a supercilious term ~ I would like to hear the definition of this term. Most R/Os, REO's, ~ even Mates and Engineers had their strong points and weaknesses~ but I never met a Super one from any of these.
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  #38  
Old 13th March 2012, 17:43
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He was right - any paint on the insulator shim that separated the loops from the base assembly would have rendered any bearings completely useless.

I didn't know that, but then I don't suppose he did either.
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  #39  
Old 31st May 2012, 00:02
sparksatsea sparksatsea is offline  
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Kelvin Hughes Radar

After spending ten years at sea, I came ashore as a Marine Electronics Engineer. I was tasked to attend to ex Channel Island ferry's having been sold to the Italians. On one of them the heading marker on the main radar set was not functioning. When I got there and removed the aerial casing I found that the heading marker assembly had disintegrated. Contacted KH who advised that they no longer had them in stock.... hmmmm what to do next??

Removed the fixing plate and took backto the workshop... cut a BIC biro case in half, the same height as the original unit... inserted a reed relay into the casing, fixed two long wires from the bottom and sealed
with lashings of araldite... When dry put ohm meter in extended wires and run a magnetg over the relay... short circuit obtained.... Re-visit vessel, fix plate assembly back into circuit, attach wires and fire radar up.... hey presto now have a good heading line again.
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  #40  
Old 4th August 2012, 14:35
minty minty is offline  
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my cheif R/O was Alex Gordon a real MIMCO veteran (anyone recall the great man ?) - his advice was to always have a hammer on hand for quick repairs !
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  #41  
Old 17th August 2012, 23:51
k9ljb k9ljb is offline  
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I was the ham r/o on the hospital ship Hope in Tunis in 1969, running phone patches for the crew and medical staff. An American sailing yacht came into harbor and asked if there was anyone on board who could make repairs to their auto pilot. I took a look at it. It used tubes, no surprise in those days. The B+ of around 250 volts was supplied by a dynamotor, surplus from a WWII ARC5 aircraft receiver. It was a 24 volt model with a large dropping resistor so it could run from the 32 volt battery system. The brushes were worn down and the commutator was chewed up so it was useless. The boats owner said that the autopilot was only used at supper time when the 6 people on board liked to eat together. I went back to the ship and dug through the junk box in the radio room and, along with a few spare parts I brought of my own, was able to cobble together a power supply so that the autopilot could function when the generator was running, as it was around meal time since the cook stove was electric. Problem solved and it got me an invitation to accompany them for their crossing to Barbados. Experience of a lifetime.

Later, in Casablanca the 15 KW Onan generator had brush problems. I had to file down some much larger brushes to replace the worn out ones.
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  #42  
Old 18th August 2012, 07:25
vmr vmr is offline  
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re The Above,Our kelvin Hughes Radar Packed It In One Afternoon And Sparkes Came To Me While I Was Doing A bit Of Ship Modelling And Ratted my SPARES Bit Box For A Plastic Knitting Needle Something About Insulator!! It Worked Anyway Sparkes Said He Would Replace Knitting Needle Next Time In Port!. VMR.
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  #43  
Old 18th August 2012, 09:31
YORKYSPARX YORKYSPARX is offline  
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New radar fitted to a tanker, after sailing it failed, EHT rectifier diode. No spare, only a spare for original radar that was dismantled. This spare had diferrent heater volts.
RO altered socket of rectifier, got a lead acid battery, insulated and secured same,. switched on and good picture obtained.
Cannot remember the RO name but Radio Holland thought he was fantastic.
Yorkysparx
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  #44  
Old 18th August 2012, 11:01
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mikeg mikeg is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sparksatsea View Post
After spending ten years at sea, I came ashore as a Marine Electronics Engineer. I was tasked to attend to ex Channel Island ferry's having been sold to the Italians. On one of them the heading marker on the main radar set was not functioning. When I got there and removed the aerial casing I found that the heading marker assembly had disintegrated. Contacted KH who advised that they no longer had them in stock.... hmmmm what to do next??

Removed the fixing plate and took backto the workshop... cut a BIC biro case in half, the same height as the original unit... inserted a reed relay into the casing, fixed two long wires from the bottom and sealed
with lashings of araldite... When dry put ohm meter in extended wires and run a magnetg over the relay... short circuit obtained.... Re-visit vessel, fix plate assembly back into circuit, attach wires and fire radar up.... hey presto now have a good heading line again.
Ingenious fix! Bet it'll cause some Italian head scratching when it eventually fails Questi englis inglesi sono geniale!
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  #45  
Old 10th September 2012, 09:57
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I had two favourite fault fixes in the years I was at sea:
On this main tx;
http://www.bob-clay.co.uk/Sea.htm

top picture, a large coil on the PA tuning burnt out. Got an old tangle of wire from the lecky and since the coil was about the size of a bog roll, I used a bog roll tube and was able to count the turns on the burnt coil so I just reproduced them. Had to run at low power, but stayed on the air until a spare arrived.

When free lancing I lost a couple of working frequences (8/16) and figured it was the crystal. Fixed in a plastic box about the size of a Swan Vestas box and when I opened it up, sure enough, a small gold connection wire in one corner had come away. No way to fix it back, so put the crystal between two paperclips and wrapped in an elastic band and soldered wires to the clips. GKB said the tone was ok, and this too served until spare arrived.

Always wanted to say I fixed something with a bog roll, paperclips and an elastic band ... !! Sounds far fetched I know, but absolutely true.
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  #46  
Old 10th September 2012, 19:57
Techy Techy is offline  
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Apart from my own 6.5 volt elastic band - I saw two amazing repairs of RADAR.

The RO on a paper ship to and from the St Lawrence in foul weather, was confronted with the RADAR not working he dived in and diagnosed the delay line was burnt out. He made a replacement from a coil of heavy duty coax and two large capacitors - It worked he was praised all round. I had the pleasure of removing his work and fitting a replacement. The Captain had the RO's work mounted in a glass case.

I went on board a Norwegian cargo ship to fix RADAR (just a big blob in centre of CRT) I was peering up at the scanner and waveguide when the first Officer told me that a "piece of pipe from the radar" had been damaged in heavy weather and their excellent carpenter had replaced it. I couldn't see this work until the Chief pointed out one section of waveguide painted white like the rest but on close inspection looked a bit odd. The Carpenter had carefully hammered & filed a piece of copper pipe to exactly the same exteral dimentions as waveguide and then soldered the coupling fittings on each end. I got a repplacement and was allowed to keep the carpenters effort, a great piece of work.
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  #47  
Old 11th September 2012, 17:06
forthbridge forthbridge is offline  
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Originally Posted by minty View Post
my cheif R/O was Alex Gordon a real MIMCO veteran (anyone recall the great man ?) - his advice was to always have a hammer on hand for quick repairs !
Is that the Aex Gordon who used to be with Ben Line? Can't remember which ship I met him on.
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  #48  
Old 11th September 2012, 17:35
minty minty is offline  
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Is that the Aex Gordon who used to be with Ben Line? Can't remember which ship I met him on.
yeah, the very same - from Kirkcudbright still alive and kicking in Southend ! he spent all his Mimco time with the Ben Line which included being torpedoed twice in WW2 ! he swam to safety twice - I sailed with him twice as junior sparks on the City of Edinburgh (BenCoE)
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  #49  
Old 5th October 2012, 13:40
Vital Sparks Vital Sparks is offline  
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On joining one ship there was an extra black box mounted next to the TV in the officers bar containing some electronics and a speaker. Apparently the official Bush multi standard set had failed and a replacement set had been acquired in the UK. That set could not receive
sound from Europen transmitters and so a previous R/O had taken the UK and European sound boards from the knackered Bush set and mounted them in a box with a speaker. A length of coax was fed from the boards into the new TV and placed near to the I/F transformer where the bared end of the cable acted as an aeiral. To prevent co-interference the sound boards were interconnected so that a board receiving a signal would shut down the other.
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  #50  
Old 9th March 2013, 13:49
expats expats is online now  
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I remember the Mk4 radars used to supply me with spares....every time I fixed it I found a resistor/capacitor had fallen off from somewhere.

The capacitors used to leak oil over everything so you could never read values or find where they'd come from...

Mind you, I ended up with half a shoe box of redundant bits and the old Mk4 trundled on...

!"

Last edited by expats; 9th March 2013 at 21:37..
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