Electronic Fitters (Air Radar) were needed by he Royal Air Force to service, repair and maintain the complex radar and electronic systems intalled in front line military aircraft. The Apprenticeship trained selected 100th Entry members to become the best.
Hundreds of hours in the classroom taught the theory of valves, magnetrons, klystrons, transistors, waveguides, tuned circuits (one over two pi root LC equals the resonant frequency - we all remember that tune!!??). Detailed circuit analysis of selected radar equipments including IFF mk 10 and TACAN was also a priority. Air Radar apprentices were split into three trade categories: BOMBER, FIGHTER and GENERAL. The main distinction between these was the major radar equipment that they would study and be examined on:-
BOMBER Green Satin doppler bombing radar used in the V-force Avro Vulcans bombers
FIGHTER AI17 airborne interceptor radar used in Gloster Javelin fighter aircraft
GENERAL ASV ( Air Search Vessel) anti-submarine radar used in Shackleton aircraft.
The Air Radar guys were allocated to these classes:
BOMBER Class 100AB1 Paddy Allen, Ken Burnett, Bill Curtis, Laurie Dunlop, Tom Gerken, Doug Graham, Jack Hawkins, Colin Hogg, Brian Kinge, Mick Lyon, Ray Madden, Tony Muncaster, David Ossy Orrell, Mick Povey, Ian Quarrie, Ron Regan, Ray Smith, Mike Woodward.
Class 100AB2 Vic Bass-Twitchell, Stu Brockbank, Oggie Gilbert, Andy Inglis, Dave King, Joe Linehan, Monty Montague, Karate Owens, John Randel, Alan Reynolds, Jock Sigley, Graham Stapleton, Frank Stevens, Bernie Trotman, Chris Waller, Mike Webb, Jim White, Bob Wise.
FIGHTER Class 100F Geordie Atwell, Mark Davy, Dave Jones, Roger Leah, Tony Lindon, Roger Logan, Bob Pearce, John Sefton, Alan Shepherd, Alan Terzza, Paddy Waldron, Chalke Walker, Pete Wallace.
GENERAL Class 100G Nobby Clarke, Colin Funnel-Bailey, Tony Gibson, Rocky Grant, Acker Gray, Oggie Hearl, Chris Hubbard, Alic Prior, Chuck Shenton, Bruce Thorpe, Snowy White.
Theoretical, practical and oral examinations determined the success of each apprentice and contributed to the final graduation marks and rank which, for most, would be Junior Technician (JT), although a handful would fall short at senior aircraftman or exceed at corporal (or JT with accelerated promotion).
Radar exams included detailed fault finding where an instructor would replace a component with a dud item and the apprentice would have to employ fault diagnostic techniques to find the problem, demonstrating a logical approach, knowledge of the equipment and electronic theory.
The end result was..........................
BASIC TRADE QUALIFICATIONS
The graduate completed a course of formal training and by passing theoretical, practical and oral examinations reached the standard of skill required to be recognised as an Electronic Fitter (Air Radar) capable of carrying out the following tasks.......
The undertaking of routine scheduled servicing, installation, calibration, repair, replacement and adjustment of aircraft radar equipments. This range includes interception, identification and detection installations, aircraft search systems, marine search and doppler facilities and digital and analogue computers.
The embodiment of modifications and repair work entailing identification and insertion of detailed parts, and the fitting of assemblies involving; filing, drilling, tapping, countersinking, wiring, soldering, crimping, stripping, sleeving, bending and sawing, using either prefabricated parts or parts which need to be made in either metal or insulating materials.
The observance of safety precautions in calibration and maintenance workshops and when working on aircraft and using specialist ground servicing support equipments.
the servicing, care and use of specialist calibration test equipments and hand tools.
Later, through practical experience, defect investigation within the scope of special fault finding aids and the embodiment of modifications and repair work involving more intricate parts and affecting functional performance.