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Parotow Plessey Communication Trailer


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NCRS = National Command Radio System. Also known as HDRS - Home Defence Radio System.

Developed in the 80s, it was a text based radio comms network to keep the country regional government going if the bomb dropped.

It had 250W Skanti HF transceivers, adaptive HF radio modems, crypto, and no room to swing the proverbial cat with two squaddies and all the kit inside.

Leave it parked in the rain with the brakes on and you'll need to drag it violently round the carpark with a 101 until they release :ph34r:

Not much fun to tow behind a 2.5 NA 90. Allegedly once gave rise to the radio message "I've turned the national command rover over, over" :rofl:


Edited by TSD
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I just spent quite a bit of time reading that link....

Oh yes.....

This trailer reminds me very much of my workspace while in the army...


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  • 2 weeks later...

You might get some interest from the Vintage & Military Amateur Radio Society - I've had some great help from them with other radio projects. They might be able to dig up some documentation for you.

Alternatively the emergency comms group RAYNET might be interested in it as a general comms trailer project.

But I suspect most of the restoration projects of this type, like Vampire 101s, comes from people who had good memories of working on or with them at some point in their former lives. These units werent't widely deployed, and seemingly weren't particularly well liked. To be honest, I had a great time messing about with them as a young engineer for a few sunny months, and even I wouldn't buy one :rolleyes: (It was my introduction to Land Rovers too, maybe that's why I remember it fondly!)

The Skanti HF radios have come up on ebay a few times over the years (as have the trailers). The HF Modems probably went into the crusher with the crypto. The data terminals probably ended up in a skip, though similar ones are sometimes on ebay at silly prices - I don't recall precisely which types were fitted. The Racal(?) antenna masts probably sold to radio amateurs, but I don't think they were specials for that job.

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  • 1 year later...

i am not sure whether this is still an active link i am cold war military truck and radio collector and in volved with friends that all have skanti, Plessey, Racal, vixen and vampire kit including modem and encryption kit and circuit boards contact me simon@militaryradio.co.uk we are not a business just a group of enthusiasts

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