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C is for - Feldfunksprecher c


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The Feldfunksprecher c was developed in parallel with the  Feldfunksprecher b (see here) and was introduced in 1941:


 A quick look at the schematic shows that the only electronic differences between the b and c versions are the values of coils L1, L2 and L3: DSC00497.thumb.JPG.fe98a04cba3c8072f818507928d7ee3a.JPG

With these different coils, the Feldfunkspecher.c (Feldfu.c) operated from 130 to 160 MHz, which partially overlaps with the FuSp.a.1. Despite the overlap, new channel numbers 181 to 210 were assigned to the Feldfu.c.

Note:  the "c" channel numbers sit under the "b" channel numbers, despite the frequency being higher; the channel number of both b and c were chosen just above those of the Fusp.a.1 (151-178),  making is clear that the new Feldfu.b and c models were never intended to be used together with the FuSp.a.1. 

The higher frequency pushed the design limits of the valves, as a result the power output of the Feldfu.c was considerable smaller than that of the "b" model. The range of the Feldfu.c was about 500 meters, less than half that of the "b" model.

Externally, there is very little to differentiate the Feldfu.b and c models:


Apart from the type plate and the frequency dial numbers, the two radios are identical. A few small differences become apparent if top of the boxes are observed: 


The Feldfu.c box would have been painted with the "Feldfu.c legend like on the Feldfu.b; unfortunately most of the paintwork has disappeared from the external box of the Feldfu.c. What does remain however are the feeler shapes. Whereas the Feldfu.b has a single red dot, the Feldfu.c has two green dots. (the feeler shapes allow the two radios to be recognised by touch in the dark). A Wider view shows that the green colour coding was also used for the antenna:


Because the Frequency of the Feldfu.c was higher, the antenna length could be shorter, the next two pictures show the differences between the Feldfu.b and Feldfu.c antenna:



The Feldfu.c has a two part antenna, with a shorter bottom rod and a whip top section. The two sections were kept together with a short leather retaining strap. The green code would furthermore be used to paint a green dot on the rear cover of the radio. Like on the early Feldfu.b, the early type of rear lid (with a simple hinge and storage compartment legend) was used:


Production of the Feldfu.c was relatively short-lived, so all Feldfu.c's have the early thin rim boxes:


We now have some evidence of a foldable antenna for the Feldfu.c as well.  It is likely that production of the Feldfu.c was halted somewhere in 1942 before the new antenna was introduced in 1943, so the new foldable antennas were probably used as replacement items.

Like all Feldfu models, the Feldfu.c came with a full set of accessories:


Note that the above photograph shows the later foldable antenna of the Feldfu.b, the other accessories are identical.

Likewise the Feldfu.c had provisions to attach the A-frame to the back of the radio (identical to to the Feldfu.b setup shown below):


The early discontinuation of the Feldfu.c shows that it was not deemed a great success, probably due to it's limited range of 500 meters. Although I have not uncovered any hard evidence, it is thought that the Feldfu.c model was developed for the Sturmpioniere. During the Blitzkrieg campaign these troops played an important role in cracking the Maginot line and other defensive positions of the Western allies. Fighting in a relatively compact operational area the limited range of the Feldfu.c would be less of a handicap, while the close proximity of supporting infantry units required a separate frequency band to avoid overcrowding of the radio waves. The tactical requirements however evolved rapidly; by the time of operation Barbarossa in 1941 the short range would have rendered the Feldfu.c pretty much useless. It is likely that soon after its introduction the Feldfu.c, like the Fusp.a.1 before it, was relegated to second line duty.

Due to the limited production run, the Feldfu.c is considerably rarer than the Feldfu.b

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