Elliott 803 makes a noise again, the big red bus goes round and round and other news
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A really busy weekend for visitors meant most of the volunteers were manning the various rooms, except for one which was having it's ceiling pulled down.
Elliott 803 battery charger
John S, ably assisted by Bob 'the solder' J, spent most of Saturday morning completing the repairs to the Elliott battery charger that Peter O started last week. This involved wiring up 5 8000uF capacitors (they were big, green and dated 1973) and one of the new 10000uF capacitors correctly. Once they were fitted into the base of the battery charger, John S switched on the charger and tested the capacitors with no load. Once he was happy the main system was switched on and the machine started up successfully. Further tests confirmed the charger was delivering 26.5 Volts and 45 Amps (the correct figures). After about 10 minutes on load the system was powered off, the charger cover re-fitted and the system started again. Kevin B loaded a music tape and once again we heard that monotonous tinny sound lovely tune from the word generator speaker. Nice work Peter O, John S and Bob J. The next jobs on their list is to find out why the paper tape reader takes over an hour before it will read tapes properly and to load the Algol compiler to prove the store fault has been fixed.
Debits and Credits (the punch card room)
Graham is still making steady progress and he has given us an update:
Auto Punch/Verifier - Operates under key and motor control but no punching as yet. Sorter - all of the safety interlocks are now functional. Collator - Freed and moveable manually. Electric motor tested OK. Tabulator - freed and moveable manually. Electronic Multiplying Punch - Means of accessing the individual valve modules ascertained ( with the help of Tony F. and Bob J). All valves in one module tested by Ken ( in Colossus) with Approx. 50% failure. This does not auger well for the future. Current efforts are being concentrated on general cleaning (getting rid of rust and grease) in order to have presentable units for display.
Keep up the good work Graham.
Electronic Office revamp
Work has now started in ernest on revamping the Electronic office. Peter V, assisted by other volunteers including John W and Beyili spent most of Saturday removing all the equipment, dismantling desks, attempting to pull up the carpets (which proved very difficult as is was stuck very well to the lino underneath) and making a start on removing the suspended ceiling. This should make things easer for the builders when they arrive next week to start building the new display.
Workshop / new display area
After the major clear out that started 2 weeks ago, Tony F has made a start on painting the workshop area where the new exhibit will be shown during restoration. Most of the woodwork has now been painted white and some of the walls have the first coat of emulsion. Green seems to be the colour of choice for this room and so far it is looking really good. Still a lot of work to do before 'it' arrives in a few weeks though.
There certainly appears to be a lot of people interested in buses as Sunday was a really busy day for visitors when 70 years of the Bedford 'OB' Bus was being celebrated. There was even a fly-by from the memorial flight Lancaster.