Notes from la Capitaine
Standard issue gear is all very well, but many officers are inclined to make their own improvements. I prove to be no exception in this regard. Finding myself with some amount of time between assignments, and not being happy with the performance of the portable communications devices available to me, I headed to the auxiliary lab adjacent to the ready room and made adjustments to the communications kit.
The portable unit has been enhanced with new copper casing, which enables one to extend one’s range from the main transmitter. Additional copper banding on the headset clarifies audio reception. A time compass has been added, thus combining two very useful instruments into one.
Photo documentation of the construction process has not yet been declassified, but I include a copy of my requisition, and a description of my work.
Your interest in my humble efforts does me great honor, and I remain most cordially,
Capitaine Eve Charette
Lafayette Corps Aeronautique
1st Armée Aeronautique
Submitted by: Captain Charette
Intended Use: Upgrade headset and transmitter
Date: January 3
Approved by Quatermaster: January 4
15″ braided steel tubing
standard issue headset
assorted watch parts
Upon the approval of my supply requisition by the quartermaster, I am able to upgrade my communications gear. The headset was not always a stable fit, and the transmitter needed an expanded case so that I could incorporate my recently acquired time compass. (Space on the flight deck can grow crowded, at times it is most helpful to have the most important instruments immediately to hand.)
First, I selected a case that would most closely fit the transmitter, choosing an altoid tin for an ipod nano-sized instrument. Using a grinding wheel, I cut a slot in the case, allowing the headset wire to slip through with the lid closed. Then I coated the case with chrome paint and wrapped it with copper flashing (hot glue worked better than superglue on the copper). I affixed a belt clip (pirated from an old tape measure) to the back of the case and padded the interior with thin foam to float the ipod and keep it from banging around. Finally, I installed the time compass to the front of the case, employing the bent brass washers and watch parts.
For the headset, I separated the earphones from the thin wire band holding them together. The original intention was to use new toilet supply line for the headset bracket, but it proved to be too springy, so I added the pipe hanger for resistance. I glued and screwed the earphones onto the hanger and tubing. I reinforced the join with strips of copper flashing.