Martin Brenner's, Pilot Balloon Resources 

Up MK IV.A Detail

Met. Office Pilot Balloon Slide Rule MK IV.A

This is a Mark IV.A Pilot Balloon Slide Rule with a date mark of '59 (1959) A second example, from 1962 is linked on the detail page.  It was made of a heavy white plastic with a length of 24.5-in. and width of 2.5 inches. Exact dates of production are not known but the MK IV.A is known to have been in production as early as 1957.  The printed scales are protected with a clear Plexiglas laminate on the 1957 and 59 rules the 1962 rule is engraved on the white plastic face. The slide rule has 4 captive cursors (Plexiglas windows and brass guides) that ride in slots on the top and bottom edges. Each can be moved independently of one another. Brass knobs at both ends of the slide facilitate its movement.  The case wood with oiled natural wood finish.  Follow this link for more detailed information on the Met. Office Mark IV.A Pilot Balloon slide rule

Pilot Balloon slide rules were made for the British Meteorological Office by different makers, this one by BRL-  Blundell Rules Ltd. a well known British slide rule maker.  The Mark IV slide rule manufactured by James Farrow and Son is similar to the this rule.  The layout of this rule is identical to the IV rule except for the addition of a single reference mark ("SR. YDS" on the tangent scale at 1.85deg). 

Succeeding Mark V and Mark 5 Pilot Balloon slide rules were manufactured by Blundell Harling Ltd. and believed to be in production from 1964  until possibly as late as 1989.  However there is no mention of a a MK V rule in the "Met. Office The Measurement of Upper Winds by Means of Pilot Balloons Fourth Edition 1968 which leads to speculation that the MK V and MK 5 may have been introduced soon before or after 1968. 


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