Welcome. We are a group of volunteer radio enthusiasts mostly from the Rockwell Collins Amateur Radio Club (Cedar Rapids Chapter) and the Rockwell Collins Amateur Radio Club (Richardson Chapter) working to preserve the legacy of the Collins ART-13 / ATC Radio Transmitter by recreating an operational Radio Operator position in the B-29 bomber. The project began in 2004 as a special exhibit for the Carl and Mary Koehler History Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. On February 19th and 20th of 2005, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Iwo Jima, a series of events was held in Cedar Rapids, including operation of the restored radio equipment on the amateur radio bands. The equipment was operated again in August of 2007 to celebrate 60 years of Collins Radios on Boeing Tankers.
Beyond the sporadic special events mentioned above, we have been quietly searching for the appropriate long-term home for the B-29 Radio Project equipment. Ideally, the equipment would go into one of about fifteen remaining B-29s that are still more or less intact. It was our desire to see the equipment maintained and operated periodically by radio enthusiasts located conveniently close to whichever B-29 was finally selected. Happily, as of December of 2011, this search has reached agreement in principle for the equipment to be made available to FiFi, the sole remaining B-29 in airworthy condition. FiFi, based in Addison, Texas, is conveniently located to the Richardson chapter of the Collins Amateur Radio Club, where the membership is already working on the effort. If all works out, the radios will be operated on the amateur radio bands on the ground and also during routine flight operations of FiFi.
Although the clubs mentioned above were responsible for
spearheading this project, the impact of time and material
contributions from Mike Hanz
of Virginia and Steve Williams of Kentucky (two leading experts on
WWII radios) can't be overstated. Mike encouraged the
project from the beginning, faithfully responding to dozens of
e-mail and phone inquiries. He provided drawings, leads on
equipment sources, and even machined seat rails for the radio
operator chair in his own machine shop. Steve Williams
provided materials and completely restored all of the components
and wiring harness for the "Command Set" (SCR-274N) radio set.
Below are some photos taken during the February 19th, 2005 event.
Clyde, KM4RC, B-29 radio man from WWII, back in his old seat.
Jules (KW0Y), Rod (K0DAS), Lee (WT0D), and Bruce (WA3AFS) do a quick
checkup of the BC-348.
June, 2006:Lawrence Robinson and historian/author Jim B. Smith visited in
Special Thanks Individuals:
Special Thanks Organizations:
The Carl and Mary Koehler History Center, Rockwell Collins Inc., Members of Collins Amateur Radio Club (Cedar Rapids, IA and Richardson, TX chapters), The Cedar Valley Amateur Radio Club and the gang at the Rockwell Collins Aircraft Completion Center.
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