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    Re: astrocompass still in use
    From: Ken Gebhart
    Date: 2002 Sep 25, 23:44 -0500

    Hi Robert.
    I heard my  name called.  Yes, we have 2 or 3 astrocompasses  in stock now,
    and 2 more coming in in a month.  These are very hard to find now.  We have a
    fellow in Chicago who keeps an eye out for them on the military collectables
    circut. He generally scrounges up 6 or so every year.
    BTW a list member mentioned the MD-1 on the B-52.  I think this was an astro
    TRACKER not an astro compass.  It would lock onto stars automatically and
    translate to a lat/long for the navigator.  It also gave the azimuth of each
    body observed, and that would translate automatically into a true heading for
    the airplane in order to check its gyro compass if desired, thus performing
    the function of an astrocompass.
    Ken Gebhart
    Robert Eno wrote:
    > The only place that I know of would be Celestaire out of Wichita,Kansas.
    > They have been carrying them in their catalogues for years. I honestly
    > don't know if that holds true today.
    > Mr. Gebhart, are you out there?  Can you confirm this?
    > I can understand your lust!  They are beautiful and functional
    > instruments. Make sure that you get a base standard with it as you need
    > one of these to mount it properly.
    > >I looked on the image with a rare lust.
    > >Where is one to be purchased now, and for what cost, I wonder?
    > >
    > >Brian W
    > >
    > >At 05:18 AM 9/25/02, you wrote:
    > >>Ah, you have brought up a topic which is very near and dear to my heart.
    > >>The Astrocompass. I bought one in 1983 from a fellow who had a warehouse
    > >>full of these items, as well as MK IX RAE Bubble Sextants.
    > >>
    > >>I have always considered the astrocompass to be not only a utilitarian
    > >>device but also a work of artistic beauty.
    > >>
    > >>The astrocompass is still in use in Arctic Canada; in fact according to
    > >>one of my contacts in the airline industry, its use -- as a backup system
    > >>for maintaining a heading -- in small aircraft such as twin otters, is
    > >>still mandatory.
    > >>
    > >>So you can see that it is still in use for it's originally intended
    > >>purpose.
    > >>
    > >>I still have a set of the original instructions that came with the unit.
    > I
    > >>used to have a paper entitled "Using the Astro Compass as a Transit" but
    > >>it has long since dissapeared.
    > >>
    > >> >The astrocompass lives on. A major utility company in California
    > >> >allows engineers and architects to borrow one to evaluate solar access
    > >> >to a building site. Here is their online manual:
    > >>
    > >> tes/astro_comp.shtml>
    > >
    > >Brian Whatcott
    > >   Altus OK                      Eureka!
    > -------------------
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