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ncc81701

Fire Control Computer Training Film

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I came across this pretty interesting 1950s USN Training film on how the mechanisms for the Mark 1 Fire Control Computer and Mark 37 Gun Fire Control system works. It's basically a basics of how an analogue computer could be build to perform mathematical operations. These videos are more for the historian/engineer/mathematician nerds that lurks about these parts rather than for people looking for explosions. Enjoy!

Basic Mechanisms In Fire Control Computers: Shafts, Gears, Cams... 1953 US Navy Training Film Part 1

Basic Mechanisms In Fire Control Computers: Solvers, Integrators... 1953 US Navy Training Film Part 2

I guess for those of you who are looking for some explosions here's a training film of how the 3x16" gun turret on the Iowa works. 

Battleship Guns: "16 Inch Gun & Turret" 1955 US Navy Training Film for Iowa Class Battleships

 

 

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Really like the cams; there's some elegance to using them for operations.  Neat video.

Kind of an aside, but I loved the occasional "computer noises" in the background.  Anybody know where those actually come from?  Dunno if it's just an artifact or what.  For example, at  ~14 mins in first video.

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14 hours ago, ncc81701 said:

Principles are the same but the same calculations can be done on your watch instead of a hulk of metal that weighs a ton, that's what I'd find most interesting.

True stuff.  The ingenuity of it is impressive though.  The fact that someone (or, most likely, a group of someones) figured out how to do rather complex calculations and make an extremely fast moving object hit another moving object with all of those variables, using nothing but mechanical components, is awesome.  I geek out on this stuff anyway since I've been around the Navy my whole life.

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3 hours ago, canadiantrex said:

Fascinating stuff.  I toured the Missouri when I was in Pearl Harbor for some training a few months back and some of this stuff is still onboard.

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On 2/4/2016 at 6:02 AM, onlytoughonline said:

Fascinating stuff.  I toured the Missouri when I was in Pearl Harbor for some training a few months back and some of this stuff is still onboard.

 At least when I toured the Missouri a few years back you can take the long tour and they'll take you down to the plotting room where these fire control computers are. The eye opener for me at the time was that the same computer was used to direct the 5" secondaries against air targets as well. 

On 2/3/2016 at 1:35 PM, OnboardG1 said:

I design digital circuitry for radar for a living. This is unbelivably cool in my mind. This stuff is kind of like what my job would have been seventy years ago.

Small world, I have a friend in DC that does the same stuff. I work on remotely piloted aircraft, My job would have been impossible if we still relied on a computer that weighs a ton. 

On 2/4/2016 at 2:40 AM, canadiantrex said:

Awesome article. Physics of ballistics hasn't changed in the past 100 years so there'd be no reason why analogue computers wouldn't work as well as they did when they were built as long as they are maintained properly. 

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9 minutes ago, ncc81701 said:

Small world, I have a friend in DC that does the same stuff. I work on remotely piloted aircraft, My job would have been impossible if we still relied on a computer that weighs a ton. 

In our atrium we have all the transmitter sets that the company has worked on over the years. The old Lightning fire control radar is absolutely enormous because of the size of the computer.

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