“PLAYER PIANO” ROLL Controls Sky Sign / Tiny Ford Has 10 Horsepower (Mar, 1935)

“PLAYER PIANO” ROLL Controls Sky Sign

USING a musical siren to gain attention, a new sky sign, designed by Edward Link, Cortland, New York, aeronautical engineer, after five years of experimental work, took to the air for the first time over Miami this winter.

The sign, constructed as a lower wing to a high wing monoplane, is operated from an automatic “feeler” roll. It can display ten letters at one time, using as many as 75 words per message.

Light squares of ten by six inch Dural strip are hung four feet below the mono-wing on a Dural rack. Each square contains 300 lights, so wired that the control mechanism, operated from inside, delivers to each square any letter or numeral desired.

The operating mechanism consists of a rotating roller on which is placed a roll of heavy paper with perforations through which the feeler pins make contact. Each feeler pin controls a letter or numeral. Due to a perforation machine, messages can be changed while flying.

Tiny Ford Has 10 Horsepower

A RISE to ten horsepower over the previous “Baby Eight” is one of the leading features of the new four-cylinder British-made Ford recently on exhibit at the Albert Hall motor show in London.

The new motor, following the modern trend, has a three-point rubber suspension. Body space is increased by pushing the engine farther forward and increasing the overall length of the chassis one inch. The chassis, just as in the “Baby Eight,” is mounted over a 90-inch wheelbase with a 45-inch-tread. It has one-eighth the power of the American Ford.

  1. Rick Auricchio says: March 3, 20098:17 pm

    In the late 70s/early 80s in Silicon Valley, there was a pilot using a similar sign system. I heard it was a KIM-1 evaluation kit (The MOS Technology 6502) running the lights. (The 6502 later achieved widespread use in the Apple-][.)

  2. Toronto says: March 3, 20099:19 pm

    Wasn’t it the KIM that a certain Mr. Gates targeted for his sub-1K BASIC interpreter?

    But this article is more of a player piano/Jacard loom deal.

  3. nlpnt says: March 5, 20091:18 am

    Someone didn’t know the difference between RAC/SAE taxable horsepower and “real” horsepower- the British Ford “Ten” engine delivered 30 of the latter (at least in early-postwar form).

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