The BC-312/342 series of receivers were built for the Army
for HF communications in field vehicles. The single conversion superhet design
is from the mid-1930's when these receivers were being developed and parallels
the BC-224/348 units that were used primarily in AAF aircraft such as the B-24.
My unit was received as a "basket case" with a missing dynamotor,
questionable modifications, and numerous dangling wires. Using an external
power supply, I was able to straighten out most of the problems and in spite of
the appearance, it does a creditable job on all bands with good volume and
reasonable selectivity. There are some squeeks and squawks at some gain
settings indicating that a few of the 65-year-old capacitors are in need of
German HE-1 monitor receiver from WWII. These were a
mechanical marvel of German engineering. The gear system driving the main
tuning looks like a complex watch works. I have seen pictures of this used in
conjunction with a DF loop antenna. Perhaps the unit was used to detect enemy
transmissions or provide bearings for aircraft in the LF ranges.
An excellent example of the Japanese type 94 field radio
designed in the mid-1930's and used during WWII. Note the receiver and
transmitter plug-in frequency units and the shiny code key that drops out of a
slot in the upper right side of the front panel. The receiver is a regenerative
design and the transmitter uses the Japanese equivalent of our type 807.
I have several plug-in units and various other parts for this beauty. I
understand that there are only a couple of these in existence in the world.
I hope to power this up and make a few contacts on the 80 meter band one
of these days.
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