About Padgett's Page

A Note on the Graphics

The GIFS/JPGs on this page show the evolution of inexpensive products:

  • Crude pictures scanned by hand using an elderly Mars M-105 scanner. B&W .gifs but mostly replaced with more modern scans. . The R520A elements were taken from military handbook TM 11-877 with change 1.

  • 20-30k monochrome GIFs captured using a little Connectix "QuickCam" - a CCD device that looks a lot like a golf ball on steroids. These are best viewed with a 256 colour display since it produces 6-bit (64 shades) greyscale.

    The "author in his lair"

    is an example of this mechanism. (The unit being fiddled with is a B-600).
    Note: the QuickCam has a focal length equivalent to a 38mm "fisheye"lens. This creates some distortion of straight lines.

  • 60k colour GIFs courteously supplied by Warren Leach. These definately should be viewed with a 256 color display for full appreciation of Warren's work.

  • In 1999 achieved access to an Hewlet-Packard 4P scanner and am learning its tricks (to set resolution, you set the printer type ?). As I go, hopefully better pictures will be available.

  • Next,with a sale at FRY'S, a Kodak Digital Science 20 camera became affordable - most of the Hickok pictures and the retakes of TOs were taken with this. Nothing special but is another step forward. This was replaced by an HP 318 digital camera (2.31 MP) that takes excellent photos that are way too big.

    The House Guests.

  • In 2005 I bought a Canon 4.0 MP camera that takes even larger pictures and the HP4P and 4S scanners have been replaced by an HP 1315 scanner/copier/printer.

  • Finally, the careful observer will note that many of the .GIFs are now .JPGs and are smaller than the notes would indicate. Much smaller. In some cases what was 70k+ is now 20k. This is because of the shareware program LVIEW which does what many other programs I have tried from Corel Photopaint to Graphics Converter Gold could not - crop/resize/compress images. Simple task but non trivial to accomplish.

  • Unfortunately, since this was written, I have to downgrade LVIEW several notches: Don't get me wrong it is a marvelous program even if it gets royally confused if you ask it to do anything with a B/W .gif or .jpg - at best it gets larger, at worst it goes to garbage so not very good for dealing with schematics. Have not upgraded to the 2001 (and now 2005 !) version so this may heve been fixed.Hopefully there is support now.

    Still was easily worth the $30 fee for 1.x, even the $40 for 2.x, and what it does do, it does better than anything else I have seen. Just do not ask how to to animations if you cannot figure it out on your own. I haven't.

    About the Page

    The page was originally developed using Netscape (r) v1.1n, v2.02, and v3.01 as reference though now check with IE 6, NS 4.8, Firefox, and Opera. Though I originally adhered to the HTML 2.0 specification in deference to those who may be using some form of Mosaic or another Web brouser, lately some HTML 3.2 items (such as the opening page frame) were added but with alternatives for units which did not understand. I have avoided the use of a lot of "neat stuff" for compatability.

    Almost all of the Trans-Oceanics, Companions, and Hickoks shown from my collection are fully working units. It is one of the few hobbies where the entrance fee is still low and the side benefits are marvelous. If nothing else, all can receive local broadcasts and WWV time signals for setting your clocks. Later ones can also receive NOAA weather broadcasts. Better yet, it is difficult to strain your back lifting one 8*)...well maybe the USM-118

    In general (see estimated TO prices) a nice starter (would suggest an H-500 or Royal 1000-D - both are plentiful) Trans-Oceanic can be found for under $100. Though they should carry a warning label reading "Caution: Use may lead to Addiction".

    About the Author

    (see also "Why Trans-Oceanics") Padgett is a professional engineer who works for a major aerospace company whose name changes seemingly weekly. For many years was responsible for Information Security in an organization with over 200,000 workstations but is now deeply imersed in PDAs, wireless, and smart cards. The second floor den continues to threaten to become a first floor room through sheer weight of paper/electronics

    Go to Trans-Oceanic Home Page

    Padgett, Orlando, 1996, 2001, 2005