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The AN/FPN-36 Quad Radar

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The AN/FPN-36 Quad Radar

Old 30th Jun 2018, 06:01
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The AN/FPN-36 Quad Radar

Does anyone out there have any old manuals or photographs of the AN-FPN 36 Quad Radar? This was used extensively by the RAAF in the 1970s-1980s.



FPN36 Quad radar
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Old 30th Jun 2018, 08:04
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Check with COSATC at ESL. There is a real one (not working!) outside the school and from memory we had some manuals in the trophy case.

quad - how the memories flood back. I was the GCA instructor when the replacement was implemented and for several courses the students did not need to manipulate those 72 "hard to find between your legs in the dark" controls. Don't know what I had done to upset them but DPO send me an all female course. We had a very detailed discussion before the practical stage of the course and I managed to stay out of jail - to this day at least.

I'll put a note into the AMATCA network for you ans see what comes up - in the way of pictures etc!

MJG
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Old 30th Jun 2018, 10:26
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mgahan thank you for your speedy response much appreciated. I will contact the office you suggested. Cheers.
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Old 30th Jun 2018, 10:52
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Great piece of kit and I operated that in addition to the naval sister AN/SPN35 on the war canoe HMAS Melbourne. Much fun doing CCA's when the ship is turning and not on a fixed heading until finals...
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Old 1st Jul 2018, 07:24
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You must have talked me down onto the ‘boat’ once or twice (80/81?). Also much fun being talked down to touchdown on gloopy days on ‘staffies’ at Pearce. Ironically my last GCAs were into old Nagoya airport, Japan, in an airline A330, where they were still on offer by the military controllers. Apparently the blip from the widebody got too big near minimums, which was why they always told us to go visual slightly earlier.

I also have a Bob Stevens cartoon: GCA controller in a faint on the floor while his buddy says, ‘Some pilot actually thanked him for a good run’.

I miss the good ole GCA. ‘Look ahead and crash visually’.
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Old 1st Jul 2018, 08:15
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Apparently the blip from the widebody got too big near minimums, which was why they always told us to go visual slightly earlier.
Ah, the joys of playing with the controls on GCA! On the old SLA-3C PAR, you could wind back on the gain control so that a VC-10 was reduced to 3 blips as it approached minimums ... nose, wings and tail.
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Old 1st Jul 2018, 12:19
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Don't forget "Aston's Circus" AN/CPN4 at Williamtown. Runway change meant hitch up the wagons and like the circus head down to the other end. [John Ashton by the way was a controller at Willi...]
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Old 2nd Jul 2018, 10:39
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Originally Posted by MPN11 View Post
Ah, the joys of playing with the controls on GCA! On the old SLA-3C PAR, you could wind back on the gain control so that a VC-10 was reduced to 3 blips as it approached minimums ... nose, wings and tail.
Yes, I remember the first QF Charter B747 arriving at Butterworth and seeing it on the SLA-3C with the multiple paints.

At Willy we used to joke that the only way we handled the mass recoveries was to turn off the SSR and wind back the Primary to get a skinny 3 miles!

And the Boggies Bay (15) on the CPN/4 and having to open the door slightly to call "touch down" for Alfie Harrison at Amberley. as well as being the duty "wind in the CPs" controller.

MJG
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 14:28
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I was an ATCO at RAF Tengah 68-71 and was impressed by the way that Butterworth-based 3 Sqn and 75 Sqn RAAF (Mirage lll) would recover as a pair 'in trail' so that the controller only talked-down the leader and the No 2 dutifully followed him on his AI radar. When I was detached to RAAF Darwin (before the hurricane) to support 74 Sqn (Lightning F6), I discovered why. The Quad radar could be operated as precision radar (GCA) or search radar - but not both at the same time, so when the leader of a pair was on talkdown, his No 2 was out of radar contact and got no help with navigation towards the centreline. Good thing the sun was shining - Darwin was fun......
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 17:15
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As opposed to Trail GCAs using SLA-3C PAR, where the Mirage AI was a harmonic of the GCA and completely screwed the display!!

The Mirage guys had some great techniques, though. I was in Local when they recovered 32+2 from a flypast at KL... 4-ships all spacing themselves on AI, including 1-mile trail downwind after the break. “Magpie 18, clear to land in turn, 7 ahead and 6 on ... “ <phew>
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 17:23
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Tengah6781 ... got you!

CJW, I presume?

Last edited by MPN11; 21st Jul 2018 at 17:35.
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 18:03
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Good call...... Who else would have been controlling 74 at Darwin in 1969?
Talking of mass-Mirage flypasts: Probably after your time, but EPB once cancelled the dawn flypast at Kranji Cemetery on ANZAC Day because wx was sh*t. Aussie AVM was not happy.
Aussies, kiwis and poms at Tengah - great days.....
Liked your pic of OC 20 and OC FW in the bar. Who was the prat with the pipe in the background.........
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 22:50
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You must have talked me down onto the ‘boat’ once or twice (80/81?)
Yes I was SATCO on the canoe in 1980. Many a fun CCA's and mental games vectoring with the carrier on a heading that was not the final bearing and correcting as we turned sometime through 270 degrees at 2am with afloat version called AN/SPN35

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Old 21st Jul 2018, 22:56
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I don't know if these guys an help out
VMARS
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Old 14th Jan 2019, 16:36
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Apologies for jumping into this thread, but I have a similar request for manuals and photos of PAR, but for Gilfillan Bros. AN/CPN-4 and AN/MPN-11 (or similar) please? I've searched high and low and am asking anyone, anywhere!



Does anyone know of surviving examples around the world (other than the CPN-4 at the USAF Museum, or the one at the USN Museum which was scrapped a few years ago)?

I was fortunate enough to acquire one Gilfillan Bros. manual (see below), but does anyone have access to other paperwork?

Many thanks for listening!

Andy


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Old 14th Jan 2019, 19:10
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The WWW is sadly bereft of much imagery of MPN11/CPN4. I have a few [a very few] but nothing really meaningful ... mainly exterior shots and a couple of interiors. No idea why that should be such a thin resource.

As you might guess from my ID here, I spent a while talking from the Truck to those fly-boys. I would love an old copy of AP. 3357 - Manual of GCA which still covered The Beast!
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Old 14th Jan 2019, 21:10
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Many hours doing GCA's in the CPN-4 'circus' at Williamtown...
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Old 15th Jan 2019, 11:02
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Originally Posted by MPN11 View Post
The WWW is sadly bereft of much imagery of MPN11/CPN4. I have a few [a very few] but nothing really meaningful ... mainly exterior shots and a couple of interiors. No idea why that should be such a thin resource.

As you might guess from my ID here, I spent a while talking from the Truck to those fly-boys. I would love an old copy of AP. 3357 - Manual of GCA which still covered The Beast!
I think your alias is brilliant!

Many thanks for your replies. Ideally I'd like to track down some general arrangement drawings, especially scaled/dimensioned... or find a surviving example of the real thing!
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Old 16th Jan 2019, 08:34
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I spent two years struggling to keep Chivenor’s MPN-11 serviceable but have no documents or photos I’m afraid
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Old 16th Jan 2019, 09:14
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Took me about 30 seconds to find this

https://www.ebay.com/itm/HUGE-May-19...-/311806548251
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