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Old 28th Mar 2020, 11:58 am   #21
M0FYA Andy
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

Lawrence, I hadn't seen that paper before, I shall read it with interest! Many thanks.

Andy
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Old 28th Mar 2020, 1:13 pm   #22
ms660
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

No problem, here's another one I was looking at:

http://ed-thelen.org/EarlyMagnetron-r-.pdf

Lawrence.
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Old 28th Mar 2020, 3:25 pm   #23
M0FYA Andy
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

Lawrence, thanks again.
I think the important thing is not the bickering of the academics about who discovered/invented what and when, but which team successfully engineered and developed the cavity magnetron into a working device, and then incorporated it into a system which served a useful purpose.
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Old 28th Mar 2020, 3:36 pm   #24
ms660
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

Yes, a bit like Marconi.

Lawrence.
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 4:42 pm   #25
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

Quote:
Originally Posted by lesmw0sec View Post
Some years back, I spoke to Dr. Bill Penley who told me that he had the job of investigating the captured Wurzburg kit. He said that his first impression was of how beautifully made everything was. I have a magnetic detector from a German sea mine (which still works perfectly) and is built like a Swiss watch.
There are more angles to this though that in the heat of total war precision does seem to be an ideal to beware of. The simplistic approach of Russian (and possibly American) mass production did seem to overwhelm the arguably superior German technology. It has been said that some of the more precision made German guns readily jammed under poor environmental conditions.
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 6:08 pm   #26
terrybull
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

I agree with Andy (post 19). Echos of war is excellent. I actually wrote to the BBC as when Sir Bernard Lovell died, not a single word was made of his radar work and it concentrated entirely on his post war radio telescope work. I didnít get a reply.
Another book I have worth a read is RDFI by M Bragg although itís hard to find and expensive.
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 6:29 pm   #27
turretslug
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

In the end, the US approach of repeatable, consistent mass production was the right approach for a long war- UK industry proved unable to produce precision components like magnetron blocks, supercharger vanes and propeller pitch mechanisms consistently in large numbers, so the US was contracted to produce these even before it came into the war. Snooty people liked to sneer at Henry Ford's cars, but the industrial philosophy that produced them was a game-changer.

The German approach of trying to out-spec. everyone else with expensive and labour-intensive precision might have been a good way to start a short war but the longer it went on, the more it would lose out in the replacement quantities game.
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 6:54 pm   #28
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

I believe it was the Americans who came up with the idea of making magnetron blocks from stacks of metal stampings, speeding up manufacture, ensuring dimensional consistency, and avoiding the need for slower and more expensive precision machining from solid metal.
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 7:59 pm   #29
John KC0G
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

I have previously commented on some of this before, back in 2019. See ( https://www.vintage-radio.net/forum/...ratives&page=2 )
Louis Brown, in his book "A Radar History of World War II, technical and military imperatives", pp 403-408 discusses the post WW2 post mortem on the German radar systems. He also comments upon the fact that when the Battle of Berlin was ended early in 1944, many problems had been caused by excessive radiation from radio comms., jammers, tail warning radars, IFF and H2S.

I did a search for "Imperatives" and found that this book has only been mentioned three times on this web site. It was originally published by Institute of Physics Publishing in 1999. It seems to have been republished by CRC, which is part of the Taylor and Francis group in 2017. The reviews at the CRC web site are worth reading. Having read very few other books on radar, I cannot comment as to whether this is the definitive history, but it is very good. It is annoying that this book is so expensive, ie new prices of 80 GBP for the paperback and 128 GBP for the hardback. And used copies are similarly expensive. If you can, borrow one from somebody, somewhere.

73 John
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Old 29th Mar 2020, 8:21 pm   #30
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Default Re: Wurzburg Radar

Quote:
Originally Posted by emeritus View Post
I believe it was the Americans who came up with the idea of making magnetron blocks from stacks of metal stampings, speeding up manufacture, ensuring dimensional consistency, and avoiding the need for slower and more expensive precision machining from solid metal.
Part of the production-process for the first US-built cavity magnetrons allegedly involved using the modified cylinder of a Colt-45 revolver as a drilling-jig for the copper block.

The US war-industry was, it has to be said, rather impressive, with various toy-companies and General Motors using their metal-pressing/stamping expertise to produce sub-machine-guns at low cost and high speed. Aircraft too: from 1944, Ford was rolling a B29 Liberator off the Willow Run production line every 63 minutes, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The German approach did seem to be focussed more on specialist/high-tech solutions - some of the VFO and antenna-coils in the FuG10 aircraft-radios were exquisitely-beautiful pieces of engineering, using silver-deposition techniques on ceramic formers, all fitted in precision-diecast magnesium/aluminium-alloy chassis. Alas not really suitable for low-cost mass-production by unskilled/conscripted labour.
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