Battleship New Jersey Amateur Radio Station (BNJARS)
Dec 30 - At the last general membership meeting some comments were made about the operation of the 2-meter rigs located at the HAM-4 position. The concern was that the rig dedicated for 146.82 was being found left on other frequencies. This action made it impossible for in-bound amateurs to contact the shack via the local repeater. After the meeting, "TV Dave" mentioned that this particular rig is the only one with PL and DTMF. The adjustable PL is needed to access the various repeaters in the ATV network, while the DTMF is needed to control things like the camera located atop the North Philly repeater. By the following Saturday a 2-meter rig was located that could fill the needs of the ATV group and mounted to the right of the .82 rig. Concern answered. Please, with the addition of the new rig, there is no need to change the frequencies on the .52 or the .82 rigs. None!
Of course all was not that simple. In the course of testing the new rig, a bad antenna was discovered. The antenna was so bad that the best description for it would be a deaf antenna. Troubleshooting this past Saturday discovered a VHF patch cord that was missing its center pin. Repairs were simple and antenna operation was confirmed via on the air contacts.
Other work during the past two weeks includes the continuing work in the Transmitter Room. There, Jerry was found copying RTTY on the Model 15 machine. Late word is that the FRR-59 lost one of its audio stages. Oh well, one step forward, one step back.
The ship's Curator provided financial support for the purchase of a service manual for the missile launch video monitors located in CEC. Within 2 hours of sitting down with the new manual Rich located a bad capacitor, replaced it and set the monitor aside for smoke testing. Next Saturday this monitor will be returned to action in CEC and the second bad monitor taken to the aft O2 shop for repair. Thanks Jason, the manual saved time and effort.
"Too Tall Tom" continues to have success with the QMS rack. The O'scope has been mounted and returned to service. Soon to be completed is the restoration of the VHF antenna link, the TTY test loops and the audio test portions of the rack. As with some other portions of FACCON 1, this restoration is more than just window dressing, it is a useable piece of equipment that will find use with the NJ2BB operation.
Few members know of a recent raid to a museum ship by Ski, Margaret and myself. On a quiet weekday the three of us paid a visit to the Avionics storage area of the Battleship New Jersey. While there we cleaned out the space of junk and such things. The same mode of operation occurred during the past two Saturday work parties with the recovery of 99% of the deck area being the most visible result. Behind the drawer fronts many of the Vidmar cabinets have beenorganized and labeled. Even though several more days of work are needed, I can say with ease that the space has never been so nice. At least not while we have had responsibility for the compartment. Why the effort in Avionics? Because it needed it, big time. Also, with the good chance for future shipyard raids, we need a place to hide our bounty.
Along with the cleanup in Avionics comes a new request from the Chief Engineer, please do not bring any donations to the ship without contacting me first. We have "plenty of many things" that are common to the donation bags often found on deck of FACCON 1 when arriving on Saturday mornings. Contact me first, PLEASE. This may save you the effort of carrying in a bag or box, only to be told to take it home with you. The thoughts are good, but we cannot save everything in your basement.
Dec 8 - Thank you to all the members who helped with the move of stuff from the walkways of FACCON-1. Everyone had at least one trip to complete while a couple of the crew made a second trip. John also had some restored gear that was transported from the O2 level to Broadway.
After lunch a tour of our work areas found Bill L working on the lower doors of the SB-2727 switchboard. This is the final attack on the restoration of this equipment. In the Transmitter Room Jerry was working on a TTY patch panel that is to be mounted in the area. His final target is to bring the Model 15 Teletype back on line using other equipment that has been previously installed.
I have word that the fourth IFF display for CEC has been returned to service, with one more to go.
In the Ham Shack the HAM-300 amplifier received three padding resistors for its VU meter. This meter is used to indicate the audio level being sent to the speaker located in the small museum area just outside the shack scuttle. Our intent is to provide background audio without blasting the ears of our visitors or distracting from the changing subject of the area.
Now, while all this moving, padding and yakking was happening, Bob E made the presence of NJ2BB known on 10 and 20 meter SSB.
Back in FACCON-1, the new laminated legends for the SB-2727 have been installed. These new legends make it easier to locate and switch audio that is destined to other parts of the ship.
Dec 1 - The Saturday morning merit badge crew occupied the shack for awhile, but I hear that the results of the class and the on air time were worth it.
While staying out of the Scout's way, Tom and Ted brought the recently added spectrum analyzer to life. It was hit or miss for a while till they located a dirty BNC connector in the antenna patch loop. After cleaning the connector we were able to monitor some local commercial stations, AM and FM, as well as our own CW and SSB signal on 20-meters. Tom completed his inventory of the QMS panel and has a wish list for the next visit to the former Philadelphia Shipyard. Till then he has several interconnections to restore.
We gained a new member to our Saturday bunch. Charlie, KB3QAL, who also performs Docent duties during the week, began his initiation in John's World removing useful items from a R-1051 chassis. Also found in the shop was John P performing wire wrap operations on the next IFF display to undergo restoration. Reports are that this unit will be returned to CEC next weekend.
Dave spent most of the day tracing wires, verifying labels and making final adjustments to the receiver audio patch panel (SB-2727) located in FACCON 1. As mentioned a week or so ago, new legends for the switchboard have been produced in order for us to utilize this piece of equipment more efficiently.
It has been confirmed that Jerry has begun the task of returning a Model 15 Teletype machine to service. Once completed this mode will join the SSB and CW modes available to operators from the Transmitter Room. I cannot mention how this confirmation came about, but smoke was NOT involved.
Nov 25 - During the holiday timeframe I received E-mail from Craig with concerns that the output from our APRS station was being heard on the output of one of the SNJ 2-meter repeaters. Upon entering the shack on Saturday morning it was found that the offset/scan mode switch on one of the Azden rigs we use was in the un-marked 1 MHz offset position. The rig /TNC combination was listening on 144.39 but transmitting on 145.39. Everything has been returned to their desired position and the operation of the APRS confirmed to be proper. Two lessons need to be learned here; First, if you don't know the gear than hands off. Second, I need to keep a better eye on all the gear, all the time.
On the brighter side of life, the turn out on Saturday brought lots of good humor and friends. Bob E opened the shack and was waiting for the rest of us to arrive for the days work. He was challenged with finding the short circuit in the receiver audio switchboard. As a background note, this board consists of a vertical buss of 72 wire pairs while the horizontal direction is 60 pairs with 240 multi-position switches added for the fun of it. Oh, did I mention that each switch has 24 positions? Bob was able to isolate the trouble to a group of 5 horizontal pairs. At this point he had to leave for the day.
Bill L who has been absent for awhile due to health and working 7 days a week spent time in Transmitter Room verifying the new legend for the Receiver Patch Bay. Bill then moved to the SB-2727 switchboard to pick up where Bob has stopped. The source of the short was located inside the vertical terminal strip wire way in the form of a "sailor modification". Sometime in the late 1980s several terminal lugs had been de-termed and covered with vinyl tape. The tape was good but bunching the lugs together before taping permitted the bare lugs to bump against each other while inside a single layer of tape that covered the group. Get the picture? The lugs were redressed in a proper method and the switchboard returned to service. With the SB-2727 back in service the newly installed HAM-300 amplifier circuit was tested with very positive results. As mentioned during previous updates, this '300 circuit provides controlled radio audio to the display area just outside the shack. By using one of the ship's receivers, visitor will have background sounds consisting of both sides of on-going NJ2BB contacts. This mode of operation has already drawn heads into the shack scuttle with ensuing questions and comments.
Jerry continued his highly classified work in the Transmitter Room while wife Beth spent time in Avionics doing, what else, tubes and resistors. I hear that the girls, Beth and Margaret, had quite a gabfest of their own going while organizing the compartment.
Tom continued with his long-term assignment of restoring the QMS rack. So far two antenna circuits have been restored and an inventory of equipment internal condition has been completed. Gene H was observed continuing with his annual review of equipment donation records. This was one of the few days when he did not use NJ2BB on 20-meter PSK. Sorry Gene.
Andy "new guy"(N3QVB) was directed to the O2 level shop where he met up with John. I understand that Andy jumped right in with helping in the ongoing IFF display restoration job. Even though Andy has been onboard twice to operate NJ2BB this was his first workday, and from what I hear the BB-62 work bug has bitten him.
Rich found the aft workshop dry and usable so he was able to continue with missile video monitor repairs. Somewhere out and about the ship were the sounds of Paul and Gail doing their power panel survey.
At the end of the day Bill, Ed and I toned out two currently unused audio circuits in order to verify their location of the SB-2727 switchboard. This information was needed to confirm the accuracy of the new legends that are to be installed next week. These labels include names of circuits installed by us, integrated into the ship's historic circuits. The original legends will be stored in an envelope attached to the side of the SB-2727.
During his troubleshooting of the donated Harris R-2368 receiver, John discovered a manufacture's change in the front panel display. We have been having trouble with the PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) voltage regulator in our AFT R-2368 unit. With the info found in the newer unit he hopes to be able to locate a replacement/upgrade for the AFT radio.
I also have word that Lou and Jean were in on Friday to sort and file incoming QSL cards.
Now, not intending to make one believe that only work happens at the ship, our logs show that Mike made over 200 contacts last weekend. Most were during the contest but several were made during the week as casual yak-yak types.
Nov 19 - Due to the weather conditions last Saturday, I expected to be one of three or four members onboard the Big-J. Wrong. Ted and Ed M had a group of Scouts working toward their Radio Merit Badge in the shack for a while in the morning. No report on how the class performed.
A second IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) control station has been returned to display status, thanks to the work of John and his merry band of workers.
Rich went to work on video monitors in the O2 level shop but was distracted by the large amount of water on the deck. Investigation revealed that the compartment air fan drip pan was over flowing. But why, the fan is not operational and the chill water has never been valved in? With assistance from the Duty Maintenance person, the leak was secured and the remaining water contained. No cause for the leak was found but the amount of sediment in the pan drain indicates that the leak has been there for a while but not noticed till the drain stopped working. What's that you say Rich? Water and electrical work don't agree?
Down in the Transmitter Room Bill B documented the wiring associated with the new Receiver Patch Bay. The resulting chart will make use of the panel easier. Ski found the failure of the URR-74 receiver to power up was a loose screw in a Navy style rack mounted power strip. One screw tightened, one rig back on air.
"Too Tall Dave W" and Ski finished the day making mounting rails for the equipment racks in the Transmitter Room. The TTY Terminal Unit is resting securely in its location, as is the SRR-19 receiver.
Up in FACCON 1, Tom started with the restoration of the QMCS rack. Now that we have functional equipment in the rack, he can wire and test the system. Once back in service, this rack will perform it's Navy function of checking the quality of transmitted signals, but now the signals will be Ham Radio not military.
I did manage to find time to correct some behind the panel wiring connections that had drifted away from what was shown in ship's documentation. These changes had happened due to the various configurations starting in 1982 through to the present time frame. The re-arrangement of the connectors makes the use of the audio switchboard (SB-2727) a little easier. No troubleshooting of the SB-2727 shorted circuit was performed, however, the work mentioned above will aid in the process when restarted.
Nov 10 - A combination of poor weather, health and life kept most of the members away from the ship this past Saturday. As Ski has mentioned in the past, a quiet ship sure seems strange.
Ski and I spent most of the day working on panels in FACON 1. First, a RF splitter was installed in the feed line from the Starboard 35” vertical receive antenna. The outputs of this splitter feed the ’49 antenna panel in FACCON 1 and the new receive antenna patch bay located in the Transmitter Room. For the first time ever the receivers installed on 3rd deck have full access to the HF spectrum without the need to borrow a transmitter antenna.
Also in FACCON 1, new labels were installed in the SB-2727 receiver audio switchboard. These new labels not only make for easier reading but also reflect changes made in equipment since 1991. While at the SB-2727, troubleshooting of the circuit feeding the HAM-300 audio amp was performed. A partial short within one of the 24 modules was isolated but not located. With the new labels installed, wiring between the Harris R-2368 receivers and the SB-2727 was checked for accuracy, with an error noted. This duplication of switch locations will be corrected this coming Saturday.
Not to be left out, Jerry fabricated and installed mounting rails for the WJ-8718 (URR-74) receiver in the Transmitter Room. Power and antenna lines were then installed before firing up the radio. All worked great for a few minutes, till a fuse in the rack power strip committed hari-kari. More research needed here.
John has learned, all to well, the art of stealth, but he did bring in donuts. Margaret spent time searching the web for documents and drawings of ships equipment and lay out. No one dared mention tubes to her.
Nov 5 - Due to the sweat and energy of many BNJARS members the final three portions of the printing press now reside in the 3rd deck print shop. Yes, a lot of work was performed earlier in the year by a team from the curatorial staff, but when the call for help went out this time, guess who responded in force. Of most importance is the fact that NO ONE was injured! Even though plans A and B had to be abandoned, plan B1 went smoothly, ending at about 2:00 in the afternoon.
The equipment move did have one of those Battleship moments though. While hoisting one of the units a new member of the Brass Team (Matt) approached me asking if the press was leaving or entering the ship. I answered with a "coming onboard", followed by Matt's question of "who is going to put it together?" Being the smart%$& that I can be, I replied, "You are". Ready for Dave to go down in flames? Matt says "OK, I do press maintenance at a local printing company". Matt finished the day helping the gang while asking more questions and getting straight answers.
I know that other BNJARS members were about the ship working on their projects but my attention was directed at the heavy lifts. To all who helped with the lift, Thank You! To those who continued with their regular work, Thank You!
Oct 29 - Saturday's rain pretty much washed out any attempt at staging the gear needed for the up coming heavy left on Saturday Nov 3rd. However, the weather did not stop the delivery of the donations collected in the last week or so. On Wednesday I traveled through South West Jersey collecting the most recent donations to our BB-62/NJ2BB project. Results: A fully functional RCA RBC receiver and power supply A Harris R-2368 HF receiver that is in need of some TLC One Harris RF-350K HF transceiver, which was functional the last time used One CU-2310/URC antenna coupler (a.k.a. baby ’38 coupler) One 15-foot military vertical antenna for use with the ‘2310 coupler
The Harris gear was once part of the Comm. Station, which was located at the former Philly Navy Shipyard. The RBC came from a Short Wave Listener who has upgraded to a smaller solid-state rig.
The Harris R-2368 awoke from it sleep just enough to display a fault light. A quick session of troubleshooting leads the tech to a bad section of the power supply.
The Harris 350K HF transceiver is a different story. The receiver section woke up without the slightest sign of trouble. We spent some time, with the rig sitting on the Transmitter Room deck, tuning around 20 meters listening to the on going contest. The rig appears to handle the congestion and varying signal strengths with ease. Next, the rig was mounted in one of the equipment racks in the compartment. This 100-watt rig will make a nice addition to the stuff already online in the Transmitter Room.
The RBC was not worked on due to other work in the O2 level shop. Besides the work on the new R-2368, John kept his gray matter on the move by working on the IFF displays.
During the mid portions of the day we had a guest operator who made our existence known on the 17-meter band. Andy, N3QVB, later sent a thank you note to BNJARS for the time to operate from the ship and promises to return soon. While at the ship he also filled out a membership application.
Having a guest operator in the shack did not stop an on going project however. Ed, Ski and Jeremy finished the installation and wiring of the monitor amp and speaker as mentioned in previous editions of these updates. There is a problem with the system, a.k.a. no audio, but this has been isolated to a wiring problem that most likely happened during the very earliest of our efforts in the SB-2727 switchboard.
Work on isolating the problem with the disc antenna has narrowed the gremlin to cabling within the ship. The repair of a suspect cable connector did not correct the trouble, more news to follow.
Yo Grunts, please think about our heavy lift this coming Saturday. We have three sections of the printing press to lower two decks into the ship, than move aft through one or two WTD (water tight door). This activity should be starting about or close to 9 AM and end in about two hours. Well at least by lunch. Hopefully by the end of the day. Oh well, it's over when it's over.
Oct 20 - As those present for last Saturday’s work party are aware, a trip to Allentown, PA on last week resulted in an HP 141T spectrum analyzer showing up in FACCON 1. A trip to the O2 level shop revealed that the 141T is functional. The unit has been returned to the QMS rack in FACCON 1, awaiting mounting and connection into the ship’s systems.
Saturday’s main event was the Jamboree On The Air (JOTA) , with dozens of Scouts and their adult leaders learning some aspects of the Ham Radio hobby. Doug has sent a more detail report of his and his crew’s efforts for this two-day event.
Even though JOTA was the focus, some work was performed elsewhere about the Battleship. First, one of the 2 faulty missile video monitors was repaired and returned to service in CEC. The second one is on the bench under going surgery.
Down in the Transmitter Room tools were gathered and further preps performed for the opening of several stuffing tubes that are part of the WWII Radio Room cable run. These cables will provide antenna and control connections between the W2MAS station and the transmitter compartment. Someday the abandoned compartment up by Sick Bay will once again be home to the sounds of CW!
John’s world was busy with the IFF restoration project, yet had time to provide some testing of the 141T mentioned above.
Last and least (just joking) was the effort by some of the Power Panel team and the database creation.
This coming weekend will see preparations for a series of heavy lifts scheduled for Saturday November 3rd. These lifts will be for the printing press parts from the former USS Puget Sound raid of last June. The assemblies are currently stored in the “Wacky Jack Shack” near the fantail. The current plans call for un-shipping 2 ladders, lower the gear directly to third-deck, returning the ladders to service than moving the stuff to the BB-62 print shop. This entire operation will be joint ops between the Brass Team, Curatorial and BNJARS. This is a hint that any of our Grunts who have the time will be appreciated on this date – Nov 3. Remember, Saturday the 3rd is a heavy lift day. Hopefully with planning and safety in mind, the only down side of the day will be too many members present.
Oct 13 - Saturday morning found the decks of NJ2BB crowded with visitors from the Girls Only encampment group. Most of thevisitors showed an interest in the equipment and what itdoes.
The work side of the day began with the transfer of the recently acquired Model 19 teleprinter from FACCON 1 to WWII Radio on 2nd deck. There it will undergo restoration and return to service as part of the compartment display and station.
Two of the missile video monitors were proven to be defective and removed for servicing. A couple of spares, but different size, monitors are performing stand-in duties for the time being. John’s World found Ski wire wrapping an LED display board while John was modifying the driver circuits for the ongoing IFF project in CEC. The Transmitter Room gained the sounds of yet another receiver. Jerry installed the RACAL ‘17 that Ray donated earlier this year after he had restored the unit to service. Jerry conveyed his amazement toward the operation of this 60s vintage radio. Also in the Transmitter Room Bill B installed N connectors on some more of the new receiver antenna patch cables installed last month. Terry reports that the 24 VDC power supply for theTransmitter Room Antenna Patch Panel may be in trouble. At days end the green lights on the NJ2BB patch panel were illuminated for testing. At this time the lights have NO meaning during the day-to-day operation of the Ham Shack.
Reports out of Avionics indicate that the organization of the storage area is progressing, though slow. Remember,there are thousands of items stored there during this job.Although “baby steps” currently measure progress, in the near future this will change to leaps and bounds. With the change in outside temperatures the Transmitter Room is also more comfortable to work in so we should see an increase in activity there. One major activity to be restarted is the installation of coax, control and audiocables to connect the Transmitter Room with the WWII RadioRoom. This particular job will take many weekends to complete.
Oct 08 - Over a period of time stretching back two months, BNJARS members have been involved in the change out of the ship's UHF commercial band repeater. The help has been in the form of finding and preparing the 7/8" hard line, mounting the new antenna under the radar platform, moving the new rig to the O8 level and acting as escort for the vendor techs. The replacement of the old rig came to a conclusion on Saturday when Gene and Dave C disassembled the old gear and placed the various chassis into storage. A couple of the heavy units required assistance from Rich and Jerry. Thanks guys.
Rich has completed his restoration efforts on the IC/D alarm panel that resides on the aft bulkhead of the Pilot House. The panel once again has lights, both steady and flashing, adding to the flavor of the compartment. In all that makes two IC/D units back online in the area.
Ed continued with the long dormant amplifier / speaker system in FACCON 2. This system utilizes a radio room style speaker enclosure located in the display area outside the shack. Audio from FACCON 1 will drive this speaker via an amp being installed in the NJ2BB shack. The reproduced audio will be both sides of our Ham communications during events such as Museum Ship's Weekend. An installed VU meter will help keep the levels within reason so as not to disturb the visitors to the area. As you may remember, a speaker was hung out of the scuttle during one of our normal weekend operations and drew a crowd of visitors. It will take another one or two workdays to complete the system at which time some simple instructions will be hung next to the meter and amp.
The restoration shop on the O2 level was the center of activity with Ski, John, Ed and myself working as a group to finalize the design of the IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) read outs located in CEC. John's first unit, which is in service, used "tons" of resistors and jumpers. He has come up with a unit that uses a small computer chip instead of the resistors and as an added feature costs less. At a minimum this part of the project is a learning experience for all involved.
After helping move the old repeater parts and hanging his IC/D panel, Rich has started on the repair of 2 of the 4 missile monitors (TV style monitors) located in CEC. Over the past few weeks these two monitors have lost vertical height. Some front panel troubleshooting leads us to the need for work inside the chassis. However, the units are hardwired, Navy style, and will require some extra effort to remove from their shelves for repair. Although this will only take an extra hour or so, it does confirm that nothing is easy when you're working on a Battleship.
Down in the Transmitter Room Jerry was working on the Receiver Antenna Patch Bay by making connections for the new (old) HF test signal generator. This AN/URM-144 provides HF markers at set frequencies (i.e. 14.4 MHz) and 2 audio test tones. This signal source, although not designed for Ham gear, will none the less provide a known signal source for those times when an operator wants to check his or her patching and equipment configuration. Thanks Lou for obtaining this gear for us.
A little birdie informs me that work on vacuum tube storage is continuing, but please no more midnight donations. Check with me before dropping off any of those tubes that have been taking up room in your junk box. Once the stocking is complete all the tubes will be checked for function. If you think that stocking the tubes was a tedious, if not boring, job then think about testing each and everyone of them.
Sep 21 - Yes it has been awhile since my last update and I do not have a good reason for the absence of one.
Gary and Bill made the trip from the Dayton, OH area three weeks ago. On Saturday they provided some major help with installing a new 1/2 inch hardline from the Transmitter Room to the FACCON 1 shack door. This line has its final termination at the J-pole antenna located on the Top-Fore-Mast. Once the 440 MHz all mode is repaired we will have excellant coverage of the Delaware Valley and beyond. On Sunday Gary gave Bill a private tour of the public spaces than operated NJ2BB before heading back to Ohio.
Last week the ship's new commercial band repeater was installed by the vendor with help from BNJARS members. All appears to be working better than ever. We still have to run a signal check on Broadway to find out if the passive repeater system down there has also improved.
While On Broadway, a stop in the Transmitter Room would find that Jerry has been hard at work. He has returned to service a Collins wide band HF receiver distribution amp provided by John S. This unit allows for the operation of up to 5 receivers from one antenna without interaction between the rigs. It was a very strange scene in the compartment to hear three receivers alive at the same time.
Also in the compartment, Jeremy began the cable installation that will extend the "receive side" of each T/R relay toward the receiver antenna patch bay that is now functional. Tom spent this past Saturday installing N connectors on the cables. All this amp, cable and patch bay work is planned to reduce the complications of using the Navy gear in the compartment. Less work, more operating time by more operators.
Terry, the king of stealth, has performed functional checks on the Transmitter Room antenna patch panel interlock and alarm system, with success. However, by the end of the day there was some concern for one of the power supplies in use by the circuit. Yes, the Transmitter Room has both an antenna patch panel and an antenna patch bay.
Work on returning the donated Drake L4 Kilowatt amp to service has begun. First tihing noticed was the manditory replacement of capacitors in the voltage doubler circuit. Time to do some shopping for "real" capacitors.
Aug 11 - We have three teams of two members each for our Power panel project, based mostly on first come first served. Two of the teams fall into the "natural selection" category because of husband/wife or father/daughter applications. The third is just a couple of stray members who should work well together. Each of the teams will be assigned a portion of the ship to gather data from. When all teams have completed their section, the teams will rotate and perform a back up audit of another area. This way everyone gets a chance at the ship and the accurate of the data is increased.
The first team, Paul and Gail, spent this past Saturday at the ship testing the data collection forms as well as walking the early portion of their assigned section of the ship. Brian, part of the Brian and Ed M team, happened to be at the ship Saturday so he followed Gail and Paul as a means of getting up to speed on the project. The third team, Bob and his daughter Sara, will begin their section when next at the ship.
As for the other work party members who were at the ship this past Saturday, the list of jobs is long. Dave C and Ray spent time sorting and stowing the tons of fuses we have collected during the many visits to the shipyard.
John S made headway towards a very acceptable repair to the IFF displays in CEC. The original vendor supplied units ( in 2001) were expensive and are now failing. Johns solutions is not only cheaper, but will last for many years, cost less and allows for future animation of the displays. He now awaits Chief Harry's approval.
Rich and new guy Tom removed an IC alarm panel from the Bridge for restoration work to take place in Brian's shop. One more item that when finished will add to the flavor of the compartment.
Dave W, with some assistance from Jerry tested the recently donated GE VHF low band mobile rig (6 meter FM). Using the service monitor in the Transmitter Room the output power, deviation and the programmed frequencies of the rig were verified. Next the rig will be mounted in the FACCON II shack, under the packet gear. The control head will be mounted on the VHF pole along side the 2 meter rigs.
Speaking of Jerry, he reports that the intermittent trouble with the power to the FRR-59 receiver has been located and repaired. It turned out to be a bad connection inside the umbilical cord that allows for the chassis to slide out of the case for service.
Ed C installed a replacement for one of the PCS-3000 rigs we use for the 2 meter data circuits. The removed unit turned up deaf the other week therefore the need for the change out.
Ski and I, with ground assistance from Ed, spent most of the day up on the radar platform working on antennas and feed lines. First we installed the antenna for the new ship's commercial repeater system. This antenna will use the hard line that was traced and tested two weeks ago. Next we traced a feed line from the O8 level weather shack to the platform for future APRS use. A new 2 meter antenna for this purpose was installed and connected. Next we located the remaining 7/8" hard lines that run from the transmitter room to the radar platform. They were located inside an armored cable trough (3/4" thick steel) that was secured with dozens of bolts. We opened the trough, tested the cable, installed a connector and connected the 440MHz J-pole antenna to one of the cables. We than closed the trough, cleaned up after ourselves and departed the area.
July 21 - The major job for the day was the tracing and restoration of a hard-line cable that runs from the former TACAN (TACtical Air Navigation) compartment on the O8 level and terminates at the radar platform. This cable will be used in conjunction with the new commercial UHF repeater that the ship has purchased. Mounting the antenna upside down at the platform should increase the coverage of the ship. Of course, replacing the current machine with it's 7 micro volt sensitivity is a good first step. The vendor will install and adjust the new machine in the next couple of weeks.
Located within the Armored Con (O4 level) is an IC/D alarm panel similar to the one located in the Message Handling Area. Thanks to some work by Gene H this panel is now safely illuminated, creating some of that realistic feel to the compartment. Just outside the Armored Con is another IC/D panel that is being tended to by Rich. Again, restoration work to give that lived in feel to the Bridge.
Because of the work up on the radar platform I was not able to talk with Terry about progress in the Transmitter Room but he did leave a note, so I guess progress was made on the antenna patch panel interlocks. For the same reason mentioned above I have no idea on what happened on Saturday in the O2 level repair shop. Sorry that I missed you John.
July 7 - On Saturday troubleshooting of the Ham-2 station revealed a couple of items that were taken care of on the spot. First was the failure of the TS-570 to retain its internal settings. Solution: replaced the internal memory battery. Second was the failure of the TS-570 to respond to TX commands while operating in the PSK mode. Cause; Digipan communication ports settings were not as they should be. Solution; reset the settings, such as COM1 instead of NONE. A further check of other software revealed that other changes were needed. Thanks to Gene and Margaret the station is back to full service.
I doubt that the software is changing its default settings, although it is possible. So just a reminder that the rules that govern the operation of NJ2BB do NOT provide for individual operators to change software settings. In the case of the Digipan settings an AO traveled to the ship expecting to spend the day on the air. Instead he found a non functional station, double checked that he was not doing anything wrong and followed the rules by noting the malfunction and informing the CE before departing the ship. All because a fellow operator had a better idea.
Also on Saturday, Ski converted some more Navy style power connectors into civilian type, powered some Ham-2 gear from the circuit and changed the appropriate tags on the shack power panels.
Terry and Ski rang out the wiring that runs between the Transmitter Room antenna patch panel and the one located in the NJ2BB shack. This was done to confirm the action of the green pilot lights that adorn the upper section of the NJ2BB panel. Terry now continues with the wiring and installation of the Transmitter Room antenna patch panel interlocks. Once completed and placed into service, the green pilot lights will give NJ2BB operators an added assurance that the antenna they have selected for operation is in fact the antenna that is being used. The operation of the lights is simple; No light means the antenna is not properly connected in the Transmitter Room. But for now the system is NOT OPERATIONAL. No green light is acceptable.
In the O2 level repair shop John needed to make a few wiring changes and capacitor replacements before returning an RBM series HF receiver back to life. All needed parts were found inside the mess also known as Avionics. Speaking of Avionics, by the end of the day all pilot lamps had been sorted into individual storage compartments including labels. This may seem like a small action but is really a step towards an organized compartment. Right!
The really big news for Saturday was the visit by a former BB-62 Radioman. Serving the ship from 1985 till 1989, he spoke the words that mean so much to us," It looks just the way I remember it". As he moved about the compartment he touched each piece of equipment, smiled, maybe made a comment, than moved to the next rack. The sad news is that he lives and works in Philly yet only last week found out about the ship being open for tours.
May 29 - During our visit to the former USS Pugent Sound last month we acquired hundreds of pounds of hand tools for use at the BB-62. On Saturday the last of these tools were removed from their temporary storage in the Message Handling Area to various compartments that may have need for tools. Extras were placed in drawers in the TTY Office to await further distribution.
Responding to a request from the Quarter Deck, Ski replaced the portable TV set that the watch standees use as part of the ships security system. This was after performing troubleshooting of the general lighting failure in the Message Handling Area. There appears to be a broken wire inside one of the bulkhead mounted light switches. The Quarter Deck said that they would report this fact to the proper personnel for repair.
Ray spent the day lacing a flat wire harness located inside the case of a URT-23 transmitter. He had removed the lacing earlier this month as part of the process to replace a section of bad coax cable. The lacing was tricky since it performs the special task of allowing the multitude of conductors to bend as the equipment drawer is moved in and out of the case.
Jerry spent the day installing audio cables between the Transmitter Room receiver audio switchboard and numerous pieces of gear that are to use these signals. For example, the URT-23 transmitter handsets will finally have to ability to monitor receiver audio, making use of the rigs in 2 weeks a little easier.
Bill B and John spent time in CEC gaining information on the 1987 HP workstations that have been captured during the past couple of shipyard raids. Their intent is to "break into the system" so that the machines can be used to increase the military feel of the compartment. Unlike the first workstation that had been so "demilled" as to cause us to gut the machine and install a more modern video system, we hope to utilize the existing machines in this endeavor.
Up in the O2 level shops, John S has found a solution to failure of numeric displays in CEC. While at Dayton John found a vendor with a very good deal on miniature 7 segment displays. These cheap modules will replace the rather expensive rear luminous displays currently installed and failing.
Down in the NJ2BB shack Gene connected the SB-610 monitor scope that was purchased at the Hamvention. Both Ham 2 and 3 now sport these scopes which not only perform their function as signal monitors but are eye catchers for non Ham visitors.
Last and always least (hi hi) is Mike's operation during the WPX (prefix) contest. During some casual operations on Saturday Mike racked up more than 80 QSO's on CW. He was still hard at work when the rest of us departed late in the afternoon.
This coming Saturday will see the work schedule shift toward checking the operation of our All Navy, All Battleship equipment to be used during the Museum Ship Weekend event of June 9 and 10. Besides the already proven operating positions in FACCON 1, Radio 2 and the Bridge we have to check the recently restored control station at the O8 level. If this gear works as hoped we will have reached a new level (pun intended) in ship's communications.
May 23 - I have received a number of E-mails asking about the weekend at the Dayton Hamvention. All nine of our members making the trip would agree with me that the booth was a great success for the third year in a row. There were a few times when the booth was missing visitors but that time frame was short lived. We owe the ship, especially Bob Walters and Jason Hall a thank you for the loan of the fiberglass 16" projectile that graced the entrance to the booth. It was a great conversation piece that stopped many visitors in their tracks.
A special treat for several of us was the presentation by Harry of a special ship picture and QSL acknowledgement to Astronaut Bill McArthur for the contact we made with him on New Year's Eve of 2005. Thanks to the ARRL for helping us arrange the presentation. We will have pictures up shortly.
Attending the Hamvention for the first time were John Saracen and his wife Loraine, Ski and Mrs. Ski (Cheryl), Joe Cramer and Gene Holben. Returning with their dog and pony show were Harry Bryant, Margaret and Dave Burgess accompanied by the cast of NJ2BB members contained in the thousands of slides that were displayed at the booth.
As for the Sunday morning forum, a last minute schedule change by the Hamvention committee moved the presentation up in time by 45 minutes and to a different room. This change was not in the printed program that was available to all ticket purchasers. This change may have been the reason for the low (30) turnout of attendees.
I pass along to all who supported the booth a big thank you and a job well done.
April 28 - Awhile back, during a guest operator visit, the Yeasu HF rig located at HAM-2 developed a hard to operate tuning knob. Since that day, Bill B has investigated and repaired the rig, It appears that somewhere in its long history the rig had its main tuning knob repaired using some 5 minute epoxy. Well, some of that product found its way into the gears of the tuning dial and caused a jam.
I received word that another museum ship might be in need of modules for their SRA-47 antenna multi-coupler. We have several de-mil'd modules that are not compatible with housings installed onboard the BB-62. The recent visit to the ship yard provided the opportunity to acquire the needed parts to reverse the de-mil process. Dave C has reinstalled the missing knobs and parts thus making the modules available to the other ship if desired. Another Dave C job is the relamping of the Transmitter Room. Although a limited supply of fluorescent tubes prevented the completion of the task, the room is well on its way to "brighter than ever".
Up in the O2 level shop a Kenwood 12 volt power supply sports new pass transistors. The repaired supply will find its way into the NJ2BB shack in the near future. Also in one of the O2 level ships Rich has been working on a 19 inch security monitor that suffered a stroke several weeks ago.
This weekend, thanks to a donation by his weekday employer, Jerry has a very nice portable service monitor in the Transmitter Room to aid in our endeavors off Broadway. He has already put it to use on the FRR-59 radio.
The SB-2727 audio switchboard in the Transmitter Room has been remounted next to the transmitter antenna patch panel in an effort to shorten the lengths of cables associated with this switchboard. When wiring is completed this panel will direct all received audio from those rigs in the room to the many amplifiers and speakers also located in the room.
I see in the Transmitter Room work log that John S was successful in returning the output of AN/URT-23 #3 to full power. With this accomplished we will be able to continue with the troubleshooting of the auto tuner (URA-38) system attached to the Port 35 foot vertical.
In the Message Handling Area, the center NAVMACS display terminal guts have been replaced after several weeks of darkness. Thanks to Bill B and John P all three of these NAVMACS once again display live packet data.
I have also received word that the Sea Scout Watch Detail on the O8 level has been revived for the summer, therefore our resources are needed for repair and restoration of comm gear at this location. For those not familiar with this project, the Sea Scouts stand military style lookout duty on the O8 Level. While on duty at the high vantage point they log all river traffic in the area of the Big-J, reporting anything unusual to the Quarter Deck. Coast Guard communications are monitored by the lookouts as an aid in performing the assigned task. In the past this duty station has assisted the Quarter Deck and the Coast Guard in protecting boaters and other users of the Delaware River.
And, what would a Saturday be without Ed and his telephones. Now that the travel path of the Engineering tour route has been developed, he has been busy bringing those phones needed for visitor safety back on line. There are also two or three phones, located off Broadway, that will be bridged to new instruments yet to be mounted on Broadway.
On a closing note, on Saturday we had a minor flooding condition in the NJ2BB shack. It seems a derelict coffee cup suffered a collision with a moving object. Of course the moving object won the contest so the coffee cup bowed in defeat. The result being the coffee running across Ham-2 and 3, including the journal. Please, everyone has to maintain control of liquids they bring into the shack. Done with that coffee, soda or water? Than dispose of the container now, not later. Still using it, than insure its safety by knowing where it should not be placed or stored.
Yes, I am forgetting the effort put forth by someone but I will eventually catch up with you in a future update.
April 15 - Well, another visit to "Ship Depot" has ended with good results thanks to all involved. BNJARS had slots on Thursday and Friday but thanks to an offer from the Orleck group I was able to attend the raid on Monday. The Monday visit is very important to us as it gets us into the radio rooms on the first day of the week, the same as other museum ships. While helping the Orleck group, I was able to tag some gear for later removal by NJ2BB members at the end of the week.
We were able to get several items needed on the BB-62 such as replacement parts for the 1MC, some type G phones, lots of loose tools etc.... All of the gear came from the former USS Puget Sound AD-38, a destroyer Tender. A number of the persons onboard during the week had memories of earlier days of being on this ship during her active duty years.
This past Saturday was spent moving most of the items into proper storage or in its final locations. Some of the tools are still being sorted into sets for distribution among our work locations. A great big thank you to all who attended the raid and/or helped on Saturday.
April 1 - Once again BNJARS members could be found throughout the ship performing a wide range of jobs. Up on the O2 level Dave C helped John finish the painting of the shop deck.
In the Transmitter Room Jerry continued with his work on the FRR-59 receiver. Both of the SSB demodulators are now functional although one has less than design gain. An outboard audio amp has been connected to the line out connectors, thus eliminating the need to use headphones.
Rich and Ski worked on the TTY classification lights in CIC, removing some early restoration "jury rigs" that had been installed to get the lights, in the Message Handling Area, working. After lunch Ski moved to the Armored Con to restore the circuit located there. While there he discovered what appears to be cable for a second Red Phone (TA-970). I'm sure he will confirm the function of the cables and then remount a phone in this location
Meanwhile Brian worked on solving some problems with the 22MC circuits associated with the unit in the TTY Office.
Because of some ongoing trouble with brightness of the display in one of the Harris HF receivers located in FACCON 1, Brian swapped the two rigs. This placed the ailing rig in a less tuned operating situation as well as a better physical location for movement during servicing times. John has been working on a redesign of the failing dual polarity voltage regulator.
Down on Broadway repairs were made to a security camera connector. Somewhere in all this activity Dave C managed to make a handful of CW contacts.
March 17 - Although we had a small turnout due to the weather, Saturday morning found Gene H and Doug hosting the operation part of the boy Scout Merit badge program. While the Scouts were making their required QSO one of their leaders who has been an inactive amateur for awhile, took advantage of the circumstances and Margaret as the AO, to make a contact of his own. When last heard from he was rethinking his inactive status.
After the shack was cleared of visitors, Gene spent the remainder of his time producing a short illustrated quick guide to use of the TS-570D located at Ham-2.
Up on the O2 level the HRO receiver came to life after a tube replacement and contact cleaning. The rigs operation was improved when an aftermarket volume control was returned to its original design. Also producing sounds was a 1960s Lafayette general coverage receiver that was given to John a couple of weeks ago. No words on any required repairs.
The day was completed by taking out the trash and locking the shack gate. I will not be at the ship this coming Saturday, March 24. Those who have a special job they are working on may of course do so. Just remember the safety rules about not working alone.
March 11 - The NJ2BB shack was very busy during the morning hours. Combined, the Merit Badge class and a group of visiting Cub Scout added about 30 people to the compartment. In addition to the extra members on Saturday due to the visitors, one long missing member and two potential members joined the work party.
Dave C and his grandson Dave, a former Marine, transported a monitor from CEC to one of the repair shops for work, than entered "the void" known as Avionics. There they attacked the fuse and fuse holder drawers with an aim of organization. Thanks guys.
Randy and his son RJ helped move equipment from the O2 level shops to the machine shop. From there members with access to Broadway completed the transfer of equipment. RJ, a freshman at Virginia Tech was able to spend time in John's World picking the Old Timers brain about basic electronics (a.k.a. school work). During the class room session Randy wired the emergency lighting unit located in Avionics.
Jerry headed straight to the Transmitter Room to continue with his quest of the FRR-49 receiver. Heck, he left his wife Beth standing in the shack, but she quickly found her way to the TTY Office than into Avionics for vacuum tube duty. Together with Margaret they also managed to organize some more drawers in this storage space.
Not only was the shack filled with people but so was Avionics.
Somewhere in this confusion of bodies, Ed and Gene learned more about the programming of the TS-570D mentioned last week. By this coming Saturday Gene hopes to have one of the "personalities" of the rig setup for PSK operation. That means push one button and the rig is ready to go including mode, filters, power level etc.
After lunch Brian moved some mounting brackets so that the FRR-49 mentioned above could be relocated to a better working height. Not long after the move Jerry could be seen with a big, very big, smile on his face. The long silent rig was producing the sounds of CW and voice signals. At last the patient lives! More TLC to follow.
In the midst of all this activity, Rich was able to test a donated, but broke, security camera and begin work on the monitor the two Daves had delivered earlier.
It is a given fact that somewhere in all of the above words I have missed more than one person and their efforts towards our goals aboard the ship. But, my fingers are tired and demand a rest.
March 5 - One of the great philosophers of our times often refers to "no good deed goes unpunished". So it was with the equipment moves for HAM-2 last week, Less than 24 hours after making several contacts the FT-757 developed a stuck tuning shaft, rendering the transceiver out of service. Dave Cunningham came to the rescue with the loan of a low mileage TS-570D. Gene H and Jeremy took little time to install the ‘570 at HAM-2 and give it a work out. Success! Many of the functions of this rig utilize a menu system that reduces the number of front panel controls therefore the operation manual has been left in the aluminum box just to the right of the rig. I am asking operators not to change any menu settings until Gene and I get the chance to program in at least one default user aimed at the PSK operators. The rig is usable as is, just stay out of the menus, please.
While writing updates for the past few weeks I managed to miss some work performed during the update periods. For example, Terry and Dave C installed, at the request of the ship's staff, a TV set in the Docent's ready room near the Quarter-Deck. The request was aimed at giving the Descents a better chance to view the Volunteer Bulletin Board that appears on SITE channel 8.
Up in Combat Engagement Center, CEC, some of the display modules provided by a vendor have failed, after being in service for 5 years. John has been asked to develop a sensible, low cost, long life replacement module. When last heard from, John was hard at work with soldering pencil and milling machine.
Three or four weeks ago Ed Martino and I traced a route for two cables that need to run from the transmitter room to Radio I (WWII Radio Room) these cables will provide control and antenna access for the equipment that has been installed in Radio 1 since the raid to the former USS Des Moines. Interestingly, these cables return the functions removed in the 1982 modernization program. Anyway, a route was found. This past Saturday, Dave W and Dave C removed the first couple of the nearly 30 stuffing tubes that define the cable pull. Now, with sizing and specialty tools identified we are nearly ready to tackle the main portion of the job. Future updates will place a call for extra workers to work their way between the compartments.
In an effort to improve the processing of Encampment Visitor through the Flight Simulator, the staff requested that a phone from the Ship Service Telephone System be installed in the simulator control hut. This would allow Ralph to use the 1MC tie-line to call the various visitors to the pier in a timely manner. Jeremy and I managed to overcome several speed bumps and place the requested instrument into service this past Saturday.
The audio amp associated with the Forward Harris HF receiver has been placed back into service thanks to the replacement of two burnt out lamps and the realignment of one portion of the receiver switchboard. This particular receiver is often used as a monitor while guest operators are in the NJ2BB shack.
Now bringing up the end of this update is Jerry, who when last seen, was still working on the SRR-49 HF receiver down in the Transmitter Room. Several bad tubes and a smoked resistor later the rig may have some signs of life. Maybe. (Jerry has informed me that he enjoys being picked on, so..........)
Feb 17 - The number one requested change to the Ham-2 station has been the addition of a separate, fixed level audio feed from the transceiver to the computer sound card. Without this separate feed any change in the front panel AF control also affects the operation of Digipan, MMTTY or any of the other sound card digital modes used.
During a discussion of possible mods or changes it was realized that the FT-757 in the TTY Office has the needed audio output on its rear panel. Gene and Ed checked out the possibility of a change out of the rigs than performed the change. By the end of the work day Gene was back on PSK without the interaction of the front panel AF control and the sound card input. No changes in the operation of Digipan were needed or made, just the rig.
Elsewhere on the ship Ski and Rich worked on the interfacing of a rather large pressurized security camera to the ship's security system. Using a typical BNJARS "jury-rig" it was shown that the security system joy-sticks could remotely operate the zoom and focus functions of the 180 mm camera lens. Of course, bench testing is just the beginning; there are numerous connectors and cables to be manufactured, installed and tested.
Upon entering the radio room Saturday morning it was noticed that half the overhead lights in the Message Handling Area were dark. A lengthy investigation showed that not only had a fuse committed suicide, but a copper rivet that joined two portion of the internal electrical bus had loosened. The ship's maintenance department was notified by voice and letter of the problem. Anyone entering the Message Handling Area, on their way to the Ham Shack, should not be alarmed about the partial loss of lighting. The lighting in the NJ2BB shack is not affected by this problem but repairs may require the temporary removal of power from the shack lights.
Jan 27 - The gang did such good work the week before that the staff requested 2 additional security cameras. One has been added to the new Chief of Staff Stateroom display while another has been added to the Mess Decks. Gail, Paul, Lou and Ski performed well in spite of bad cables, dark areas and me.
The burping "R series" power supply symptom has been located and corrected by John. Rich installed his repaired umbilical cable, with success. The four-missile launcher cameras are now online with displays in CEC functional, but the monitors are in need of some TLC.
Down in the transmitter room, Jerry worked on the donated Collins 75A receiver. By the end of the workday the room was filled with the sounds of Ham Radio thanks to some tweaking and tube replacements. Yes, the vacuum tube catalog/storage system was utilized.
In FACCON, aka NJ2BB, the manual video switcher has been replaced by an electronic version that provides for remote operation. When completed, not only will the operators in the shack be able to select cameras for ATV transmissions, but also area ATV operators (Amateur Tele-Vision not All Terrain Vehicles) will be able to roam our spaces via DTMF (touch tones).
Jan 22 - The transition of security video equipment into the new rack went better than had been hoped for. The biggest fear was the loss of coax connectors as the cables were pulled back through the bulkhead. However, the problem was not encountered. The bulk of the move was completed by lunch time with the afternoon spent pulling a new pair of cables to the security office. The Sounding and Security Officers now have the ability to call-up any camera onto a large dedicated monitor for a closeup view of the area of interest. Thanks to Ski, Jerry, Rich, Dave W., and "TV" Dave the rent is paid; at least for awhile.
Ed lost some of his hair due to the level of effort needed to repair one of the ships original 1942 telephone cables. This particular cable had been the victim of a heavy handed yardbird who removed the telephone that had been mounted on the bulkhead. But in the end his years of knowledge and stubbornness prevailed.
As for the restoration shop I heard something about the a power supply for the "R" series receivers having a case of the burps. Every 6 seconds or so it will have a glitch on the output voltage. More details as they slip out of the shop.
As for Margaret, she escaped from the tube inventory job but spent much of the day chasing keys and people. Getting into compartments aboard the ship ain't all that easy. Eddie Stewart of the Maintenance Dept was a great help in the effort to accomplish our days work.
I hear rumors that claim to have fixed the troublesome umbilical cord for the missile security camera. Could it really be true? Just having some fun with you Rich!
Jan 16 - The BNJARS gang continues to pay the rent by improving the ship's security video system. The 19" rack is loaded with electronics, tested as much as possible and awaiting activation next weekend. Placing the gear into service will require the relocation of several cables within the FM booth and the surrounding SITE system control room.
Terry spent his time chasing non functional 1MC speakers on the O2 level. It turns out that the speaker chosen to supply audio to the SITE sound position is not receiving a signal from the 1MC system. Further troubleshooting required.
A request for phone service ended with the discovery of damaged armored cable in the area of the tool room located near the Dental Office. Repair of this cable is scheduled for this coming Saturday if we have access to the Tool Room.
Once we get the rent payed our attention can return to the transmitter room off Broadway as there is much to do there while the low outside temperatures keep the inside temperatures below hot.
The cable work mentioned in the opening paragraph will need the help of three or four extra members. Nothing big or heavy, just overhead.
Jan 6 - The first work party of the new year was a roaring success. Besides having NJ2BB on the air for most of the day via the HAM-2 and HAM-3 stations, a number of work activities were accomplished.
First though, I need to pass the word that Rich is still talking to himself. It appears that his repaired umbilical cable has suffered a relapse and is now scheduled for a second trip to the operating room.
Bill B and visitor John hauled several R-1051 chassis to the Captain's Wine Locker for storage. They finished their morning visit by warming the air waves with some HAM-3 operating.
Harry worked with the Encampment Coordinator to restore standard TV reception in the coordinator's office.
John continues with his work on the final "R series" receiver obtained from the USS Des Moines.
Ski loaded equipment into the new security rack, in prep for the system transition scheduled in two weeks - Saturday the 20th.
Al A. started the process of mounting a Navy style audio amp in the NJ2BB shack, which will power the recently mounted speaker in the "New York Shipyard" display area. As demonstrated during a test run awhile back, the sounds of world wide communications resulted in a drastic increase in the number of civilian heads poking into the shack.
Ed C. Tried to whittle down the list of requested phone work but found resistance in the form of the extensive number of different padlocks locked on compartment doors and hatches. He did get one new customer online though.