Frans is a yachtsman who knows some history about the yachts I have done blogs on, he discovered the blog last easter and looked right through them all, thats about 2000 blogs.
The Barlow Wadley radio.
That brought back memories!
As I said above, I sailed in the 1985 race to Uruguay and afterwards skippered Wings back for her owner.
I also competed in the 1982 race as skipper of a Petersen 33 with the romantic name of "Checkers Hyper". After that event I sailed the boat back solo to South Africa. On all these trips my Barlow Wadley went with. I can still clearly remember that on my solo passage, when still over 3 000 miles away from South Africa I could receive Radio South Africa's Afrikaans and English services on Short Wave. And as I got closer to home the reception got better and better.
In 1982 I navigated by sextant (a Zeiss Freiberger) and on my final approach to the Cape I went for 5 days without a sunsight. Eventually I used the Barlow Wadley, tuned in to Radio Good Hope, and swung it around to get some kind of a rough bearing on Cape Town. Later that night I passed a large fishing trawler and he gave me a position. My dead reconing position was "only" out by about 17 nautical miles. That was considered to be excellent in the pre-electronics days!
I still have the Barlow Wadley radio and recently gave it to my young son as a thing to open up and mess with. After reading your blog I will now go and claim it back and put it on display in my office.
Barlow's Television Co., P.O.Box 23, New Germany, Natal, Rep. of South Africa
Barlow Wadley XCR - 30
varia / copyright
In 1974, a portable shortwave receiver with the dimensions of a conventional travel radio got very much attention among the shortwave listeners comunity. The first time, a circuit developed by Dr. T. L. Wadley for the British commercial receiver Racal RA - 17 was used in a travel radio. The circuit was developed by Dr. Wadley who had moved to South Africa after his retirement and the set has been built by the South African home electronics manufacturer Barlow's Television Co.
In it's time, the set had the early Grundig Satellit radios, the Zenith Transoceanic, the Panasonic RF - 2200 or the Earth Orbiter CRF 5080 / 6090 as concurrents on the market. None of these sets featured a linear frequency readout with a precision better then 5 kHz and SSB reception capabilities that allowed ECSS technique (listening to the separate sidebands of an AM signal using the internally added BFO carrier instead of the carrier of the station's signal).
Thanks to Frans for this great story about how good radio was and in some cases still can be.
View my earlier blog on the radio at the link above.
Does anyone have a Barlow-Wadley receiver for me? Please!!!
Note: Hamrad who were one street up from Bree Street, Cape Town, were selling these back in 1976, we bought the Yaesu FRG7 from them instead, Roy.