Friday, November 12, 2010

#10) W.W.II "Librascope Balance Computer for Boeing B-17" on e-Bay - HURRY if you are interested.

This unusual piece of equipment was donated to the Oregon Air & Space Museum, and has been deemed surplus and thus is being offered for sale. The current bid is only $10.49, but bids close this Monday (November 15, 2010) at 14:09:14 PST. The owner's description, from the e-Bay web-site, follows:

Mounted in a simulated black leather covered case, the device measures 16” x 11” x 3”.  Manufactured by “Librascope Incorporated, Burbank, California, U.S.A. (Does Lockheed come to mind?... for it was one of the companies Boeing authorized to build B-17s.)... and bears patent number 2179822.  It is completely mechanical (no electricity required), the “balancing” exercises being applied by turning the dials.  These in turn move systems of interconnected lever-arms and cables, ultimately arriving at two principal measurements... (1) “Total Weight” in pounds, and (2) “Center of Gravity Position” as a percent of Mean Wing Chord.  There are dials to insert such info as gallons of oil, fuel in gallons, bombs in pounds, etc.  Other dials can be turned to record the weights of personnel, gear, equipment, etc.... in the nose, control area (cockpit & adj. area), entrance, rear gunner area and tail section.  Finally there are large screws at the LL and LR corners... these being for “weight adjustment” and “balance adjustment.  I have tilted the “computor” (sic) panel forward so I could view the works, and they all seem to be fully inter-connected and in working order.  Testing the dials, each causes one of the two main indicators to swing... seemingly effortlessly... that in itself, if you saw the works hidden behind the panel, is amazing.  On top of that, this is the first either I or the curator of the museum have ever run into!

More details are available at:

Please post a comment here if you win! 

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