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"Roving Eyes" for B.B.C.

26th October 1956
Page 57
Page 57, 26th October 1956 — "Roving Eyes" for B.B.C.
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DES1GNED in close collaboration with engineers of the British Broadcasting Corporation, nine vehicles are being built by Mickleover Transport, Ltd., Whitby Avenue, London, N.W.10, for the television outside-broadcasts department of the B.B.C. Four are "roving-eye" vehicles carrying cameras, and five are ancillary outfits operating statically and linking the itinerant units with main transmitters.

Karrier Bantam chassis with a wheelbase of 10 ft. 2 in. form the bases of the vehicles, the basic bodywork of both types being identical except that the ancillary outfits are I ft. 4 in. longer. Body framing is in NS4 light-alloy material, 10-gauge being used for the underframe and mainly 14-gauge for the remainder. Channel and top-hat members were pressed from sheet in quarter-hard condition, and Argonare welding and Chobert riveting were employed in erection.

Truss Panels The sides of the. body, cab, roof and rear were separately -jig-b.uilt. Feature of the design is the use of truss panels along the sides at floor level to carry Various loadings. Exterior panelling is iri 1.8.-gauge aluminiurn sheet. Front and rear domes and rear corner panels are of plastics, the rear dome moulding incorporating a mounting step for access tO the platform roof.

Another plastics Component is the battery box, a claimed advantage being its resistance to acid attack. Valanced body sides are cambered to enhance appearance, and a step. behind the central near-side door was designed so that the minimum of floor area needed to he cut away. Entry .aperture of the andillary vehicles is wider than that of the camera outfits, and ramps, -which ma' be stowed beneath the floor, are provided for loading. heavy equipment through the double doors.

Interior panelling • is mainly in

Hardee, whilst the la-gauge panelled roof is lined with glass fibre. Racking for equipment is in light-alloy tubing, and shelving is in formed sheet. The. hardwood floor is covered with linoleum. Installed at the extreme rear of each Vehicle is a Coventry Victor 11 kVA. petrol generator with B.K.B. alternator, and it is isolated from the main compartment by a sound-proofed bulkhead, The generator compartment is panelled with perforated hardboard, but the chief provision for sound insulation is a set of detachable panels completely surrounding the working unit.

These panels are aluminium -frames which embody rabbit-warren acoustic board, the lower panels, being subject to heat from the unit, also having Basalara insulating material. All joints are sealed with Poramol. Generator mountings were specifically designed and incorporate coil springs to absorb Nibration. There is a door on each side of the' rear compartment and at the back, Air for the generator is drawn through a gauze screen in the rear door, which provides easy access to the unit for 'servicing purposes.

Various kinds of electronic apparatus are .installed in the front compartments of the ancillary vehicles, but the main feature of the " roving eyes" is a three-stanchioned ring' mounting for a camera. The operator's platform is about 3 ft: above the floor and above it is an aperture in the roof. The Millar mounting is raised by electrically driven screw gear so that the camera can he elevated above roof level. It can be panned through a full circle. A hinged flap allows clearance for the zoom-lens attachment.

To the left of the driver's seat is a mounting for another camera, which may take pictures either forward

through the windscreen, orMoyden fully opening window on the .near side. Under the scuttle is a monitor television set which can be.. seen by the commentator,, who stands behind the

driver. Behind 'the central camera mounting sit two and the pro gramme producer, who has a null-out desk flap at the bottom of a battery of equipment including mixer controls. All electronic apparatus is mounted on Silentbloc bushes, and three fans are fitted on the off-side wall to extract heat.

Gyroscopic Stabilizer Signals from a camera vehicle are transmitted via a 6-ft. aerial which is directionally stabilized by a gyroscope working through an electric motor housed in the rear compartment All vehicles have 45-ft. five-sectioned masts elevated pneumatically and guyed by three nylon ropes. A rotary pump is fitted in the rear. Directional adjustment of these aerials is by hand wheel.

Four stabilizing jacks are provided for static operation, and there are four roof-level and four lower brackets to which scaffolding may be attached. These brackets retract flush into the body when not in use. The roof walkway is of plywood laid on hardwood transverse members attached to steel straps, which are bolted at cant-rail level to avoid drilling the roof. A canvas cover is placed over the camera opei:Oor's aperture when not in use.


Locations: London

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