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Vintage Amateur and Military Radio Amateur/military receivers and transmitters, morse, and any other related vintage comms equipment.

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Old 4th Nov 2019, 2:45 pm   #1
Martin G7MRV
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Default "Violet Picture" SAR homing system, Any info/diagrams/photos?

Hi All,

I wonder if anyone can provide me with some info on the "Violet Picture" search and rescue homing system? (not SARAH, which was an earlier system). I understand it connected to the ARC52 or PTR175 radios, but that is all I seem to be able to find!

Ive tried every combination of google search phrase I can think of, and end up mostly with pictures of cats or purple telephones and TVs!

Any equipment numbers for the actual display equipment, circuit diagrams, photos of the system, anything would be useful if it gives me a foothold to research from!

Cheers
Martin
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Old 4th Nov 2019, 3:23 pm   #2
ionburn
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Default Re: "Violet Picture" SAR homing system, Any info/diagrams/photos?

Not as much as you want but this looks interesting general info as to naming if not anything else: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Rainbow_Codes
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Old 8th Nov 2019, 11:54 am   #3
David Simpson
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Default Re: "Violet Picture" SAR homing system, Any info/diagrams/photos?

Hello again Martin,
As I said in my reply in your SARBE thread - try the MORAVIA Aircraft Museum at Kinloss, or the Shackleton MR project at Coventry Airport. You could try Birketts in Lincoln who have been flogging ex RAF equipment such as ARC52 & PTR175 for years. The PTR175 which I donated to Coventry, along with the 800 page AP, came originally from Birketts. They also used to hold masses of ex military AP's, so might well have a Violet Picture one. The Signals Museum, lodged at RAF Henlow, might well have some gen. But rumour has it that they are due to close.
Lets not forget the Navy S & R Squadrons who also had VP fitted to Whirlwinds, Wessex, & Sea King helicopters. Maybe, like Moravia, there is an associated Naval restoration trust/charity somewhere.
Have you tried the massive online archive of AP's & military documentation run by VMARS yet ?

Regards, David
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Old 8th Nov 2019, 1:45 pm   #4
M0FYA Andy
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Default Re: "Violet Picture" SAR homing system, Any info/diagrams/photos?

I don't believe there is anything in the VMARS online archive, but of course there could always be something in a document not yet scanned.

Andy
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Old 8th Nov 2019, 1:55 pm   #5
M0FYA Andy
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Default Re: "Violet Picture" SAR homing system, Any info/diagrams/photos?

This document I found after a few minutes on the internet mentions Violet Picture in paragraph 15. I don't know the origin of the document.

Andy
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Old 8th Nov 2019, 2:20 pm   #6
M0FYA Andy
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Default Re: "Violet Picture" SAR homing system, Any info/diagrams/photos?

Further digging! I deduce that ARI 11820 is incorrect and should read ARI 18120.
The appropriate AP for this is AP2531L, and can be obtained from TNA Kew, references AIR 10/8136 and AIR 10/8655.
Maybe Alf Fisher at Henlow has a copy?

Andy
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Old 8th Nov 2019, 3:07 pm   #7
David Simpson
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Default Re: "Violet Picture" SAR homing system, Any info/diagrams/photos?

I would echo Andy's advice & contact Alf Fisher at Henlow. He is a very interesting & helpful guy to speak to. Great work Andy in finding the ARI Number & AP Number.
Shame on me for forgetting so much about ARC52 & Violet Picture. Its 56 years(1963) since I first became associated with the set-up on SAR Whirlwinds at 202 Sqdn, RAF Leconfield. Then an intense 3 week course on ARC52 at RAF Feltwell in late '65. Then a week at RAF Nicosia in '69, fitting VP to Wessex, whilst on 103MU at Akrotiri. Then another 103MU detachment to RAF Shajah in the Gulf in Jan.'70 - again Wessex VP fitment. Followed by a last tour of duty at Lossiemouth on AEW Shackletons, which had kept the ARC52/VP installation after being converted from MR Shackletons. Left the RAF in '75 with the intention of completely forgetting everything about Aircraft, Avionics & Electronics in general - to become a commercial diver.

Regards, David
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