Another Toy For the Old Fellow

Teletype Model 28 ASR…

The first time I saw one of these machines was in 1979 at the Andrews AFB Presidential Aeronautical Station where I was assigned to the radio maintenance shop. There were two of these machines, one 60 wpm and one 100 wpm, tied to KW-7 crypto units and either CV-786 or TE-204 modems. The modems were connected via dedicated voice circuits through a worldwide network of remotely-controlled Collins URG radios (2-30 MHz) and 10-kilowatt 208U-10 power amplifiers to Air Force One or other VIP aircraft. Punched paper tapes containing the messages were sent to and from the Andrews Communications Center through a pneumatic tube system.

Here it is, 40 years later, and I have my own Model 28 ASR. I plan to use it with my HAL ST-8000 HF modem and my Collins KWM-2 (antique) and Flex 6400M (state-of-the-art) radios. Radioteletype (RTTY) over HF (shortwave) radio is virtually dead today except for amateur radio operators, and then, most of the activity is during contests which are all essentially computer-to-computer communications. But, I’m going to give it a try.

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