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WWII
Italy
  
RC-2
World War II spy radio set - this page is a stub - wanted item

RC-2 was a clandestine radio transceiver, also known as a spy radio set, developed around 1941 by Magneti Marelli in Milano (Italy) for the Officine Militari delle Trasmissione (OMT) — the Italian Military Signals Service. It shows great resemblance to the Mk VII (Paraset) of the British SIS, both in functionality and in circuit design. Nevertheless it was released well before the Mk VII, which is why it is possible – if not likely – that the Mk VII was based on the design of the Italian RC-2.

The transceiver is housed in a metal enclosure that is fitted inside a canvas carrying case. The total unit measures 225 x 215 x 95 mm and weights 2.4 kg. The external power supply unit (PSU) is housed in a similar canvas carrying case.

Although the circuit is very similar to the later British Mk VII, it is built with different (Italian) valves that are fitted internally. Furthermore, it requires the use of an external morse key.
  

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Markings
The following markings are present on the front panel:

CUFFIA   Headphones
TERRA   Ground (earth, counterpoise)
AEREO   Antenna (aerial)
REAZIONE   Reaction
RIC.   Receive
TRAS.   Transmit
SINTONIA   Tuning
QUARZO   Crystal
TASTO   Morse key
SINT.OSCILL.   Oscillator tuning
SINT.AEREO   Antenna tuning
Specifications
  • Type
    Spy radio transceiver
  • Purpose
    Agents and military intelligence
  • Year
    1941
  • Manufacturer
    Magneti Marelli, Milano (Italy)
  • User
    Italian Intelligence Service
  • Dimensions
    225 x 215 x 95 mm
  • Weight
    2.4 kg
Receiver
  • Frequency
    3.2 - 7.7 MHz
  • Bands
    1
  • Circuits
    Regenerative detector, AF Amplifier
  • Valves
    2 x 6RV
  • Output
    High-impedance (headphones)
Transmitter
  • Frequency
    3.2 - 7.6 MHz
  • Bands
    2 (see below)
  • Circuit
    Crystal oscillator
  • Valve
    6V6 1
  • Output
    10 Watts
  • Morse
    External key
  1. Manufactured in Italy by Fivre — marked 'Balilla'.
Frequency bands   transmitter
  1. 3.2 - 4.5 MHz
  2. 4.5 - 7.6 MHz
Power supply unit
  • Mains
    110, 120, 145, 160, 220V AC
  • Battery
    6V DC
  • Dimensions
    225 x 215 x 95 mm (est.)
  • Weight
    unknown
Accessories
  • Crystals
  • Morse key
  • High-impedance headphones
  • Wire antenna
  • Counterpoise wire
References
  1. Louis Meulstee, Wireless for the Warrior, volume 4
    ISBN 0952063-36-0, September 2004.

  2. Antonio Fucci, Transceiver RC2 - 1941
    Retrieved November 2021.

  3. Richard Brisson, RC2 - Italian Clandestine Suitcase Radio
    Retrieved November 2021.
Further information
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Crypto Museum. Created: Tuesday 23 November 2021. Last changed: Tuesday, 23 November 2021 - 15:30 CET.
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