[AMRadio] A special day today-another hazard!

J.D. MacAulay, WQ8U jmac6235 at yahoo.com
Tue Jan 20 21:44:13 EST 2009

--- On Tue, 1/20/09, David Knepper <collinsradio at comcast.net> wrote:

Remember the Collins 32V-1.  Exposed plate caps on the 807s' and 4D-32; but Art Collins (his engineers) used an interlocking device when you lifted up the lid.
A relatively simple, inexpensive microswitch killed the high voltage.  
At 03:20 PM 1/19/2009, David Knepper wrote:

What I still wonder even today is how WRL/Leo Meyerson could make such death 
traps and get away with it.

In some cases it is  hard to do measurements for problem diagnostics when the interlock cuts the power is off.  Perhaps the Collins equipment never broke or the owners who could afford it just sent it back to Collins for repair (sort of like today's rice boxes).  
Other equipment made for the average ham assumed some degree of technical understanding and competence in the user, particularly if undertaking (like that play on words for the "death traps"?) a repair.  My Globe King 500 manual has a black box warning: "Use extreme caution when taking voltage readings.  High voltages, dangerous top life, are involved."  
A real concern, that I bet even Collins did not warn about, is the weight.  I suspect that more people have gotten back injuries or hernias from moving them than have ever been killed by the WRL transmitter's high voltage.
I still wonder, even today, how they could make such heavy equipment and not put an automatic anchor that bolts the rig to the floor so no one can be injured trying to lift it. (Same principle as an interlock for lids and cabinet doors.) Or at least put warning signs on the equipment advising people of the hazard and showing proper posture for lifting.  
Happy to be alive after so many years with government safety regulated automobiles, medicines, food, clothing, buildings, aircraft; and, oh yes, open box ham radio.
Hillsborough, NC

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