If you’re re-doing the rear brakes on your T3 Type 2, this picture over at TheSamba will help a lot.

Note the orientation of the springs, the top springs are under the hooks. Note the long end of the adjuster fork on the right goes towards the backing plate, short end to the front. Note the bevelled edge of the left-hand adjuster fork goes to the back. Some people say the long hook on the bottom spring should go on the left so as not to foul the handbrake cable.

Yes, you can put it back the way you found it but don’t discount the existence of a DPO.


From a bunch of stuff some other ham wanted to throw away, this ex-SWR meter.


I have no idea why the Dreaded Previous Owner stripped it down to this state. The meter movement is fine, 950-ish mV over a 4k7 resistor gives FSD, so it’s a 200uA unit.


The detector components are still in place, and it looks very similar to the Micronta 21-520A except that there’s only one meter. There’s also a little bobbin on the side for an antenna, presumably to make it into a Field-Strength Meter, but that’s a gimmick and won’t happen.


The junkbox yielded two switches of the right type and size (one selects Power / SWR, and in SWR mode the other selects Forward / Reverse). There will also be a pot to set FSD in Forward mode after which the Reverse mode should give the SWR. Give or take. Don’t expect a lot from meters like this.

Fast forward a bit and we have



Don’t ask me what used to live in those two extra holes. This setup works for me, for the price of a few junkbox parts and some time.



Orms was advertising Canon 100D bodies for R3 795*. I wasted no time to get one (should have snagged three). They also had a number of second-hand  EF 70-300mm 4-5.6 IS lenses, priced from R3 800 to R5 000. All rated “80%”. I took the R3 800 one.

And then I chanced upon an EF 50mm f1.8nifty fifty” on Gumtree for R1 200. I had to get it mailed down from Pretoria, which cost me an extra R100, but that’s how it is. It allows me to do things like this.


Available light, 1/80 at f 4.0, ISO 4000. Lightroomed to bring the eyes out a bit, here’s a strip at original resolution and no processing.



Toothless the black cat, however, is still impossible to photograph.

  • I suspect this was a typo, because the next week they had these same bodies on special for over R5 000.


(IMO, of course. And Geek Alert)


This is the switch and tuner schematic for an MFJ-949E Versa Tuner II. Great little unit, with a built-in dummy load. It has a switch that selects the dummy load, then the three antenna connectors in pass-through mode, then the three antenna connectors through the matching network, and then the dummy load again… through the matching network.

Which means that if you want to tune into the dummy load, you have to use the setting all the way to the left, or you have to adjust the tuner to match the dummy load to the rig, using the switch setting on the right.

Now why would you need to match a 50 ohm dummy load to your rig? Insane. The dummy load switch setting on the right should connect straight to the dummy load, not via the tuner.

I have a soldering iron, I can fix it.


Dankie Oom Gielie.


Predecessor of the SIMM?


This comes from a piece of medical equipment made by the other S&W, Simonsen & Weel, Denmark, circa 1979.


Each module has 8 x AM2808PC 1024-bit dynamic shift registers, driven by a DS0025CN two-phase clock driver. That’s one kilobyte of storage per module, and you have to keep on clocking the data around the ring otherwise the capacitors making up the memory discharge and forget.

It’s a lot simpler than a mercury delay line memory, but functionally it’s not that much different.







Now go away.

(no, not bodies)



Turns out we could have used a minivan full of Mexicans.






If you like Brandi Carlile’s The Story but you think the song is just a little bit too big for her, try Minniva Børresen.


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