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The Link Trainer

Heroes Remember

Interviewer: What type of training did you take at ITS or Initial Training School? Well we took the ground school of course, and I think that was our first introduction to the Link Trainer. Do you know anything about the Link Trainer? Interviewer: Please describe to me the Link Trainer. Well, it was originated by a fellow in the States and as a boy he grew up with his father who played the organ and was a, built organs in the factory and the boy of course worked for him and when he got older and learned to fly he wondered if he couldn't make an instrument to teach you instrument flying on the ground rather than trying to have it taught solely in the air. And developed on the same principle as the organ with the bellows and that's what he produced and they called it the Link Trainer because that was his name. And it had a panel, instrument panel, it had a hood too, but it had an instrument panel the same probably as a Harvard aircraft. The instructor sat at a desk and he had the same instrument panel and he would give, the student would get in, pull the hood down, turn it on and then he would be given instructions on what to do. In the old days, the Department of Transport ran the air radio stations at the airports and that's how the fellows found their way back using radio. If you were on the beam, you'd get a steady sound in your ears, if you went off the beam to one side you'd start picking up the Morse Code for an "A" which is "dit dah, dit dah, dit dah." If you went off on the other side, it would be the Morse Code for an "N" "dah dit, dah dit," so that way you would know you'd have to turn back onto the beam. If you stay on the beam till you get to the, where its originating from you hit what's called the "Cone of Silence" and then you would pick up a steady sound on the other side of the beam. But we had Link Training all through our pilots' training. I think by the time I finished school I had about 80 hours on the Link Trainer, I've got 80 hours in my log book anyway, and it was well worth my while because it taught you how to fly in fog.

Mr. Sproule describes the Link Trainer - an early flight simulator used for the training of pilots.

Frederick Howard Sproule

Mr. Sproule was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, on September 22, 1918. He first served as a cadet with the Seaforth Highlanders before joining the regular service. He switched to the air force as soon as he was able, first being accepted as a gunner, and then into pilot training. After serving as a flight instructor on Harvards, Mr Sproule was shipped to Great Britain where he trained on a Hurricane. Eventually, he piloted a Typhoon as a bomber in the Burma Campaign, helping to drive back the Japanese. His tour finished as the Japanese were completely driven out of Burma.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Frederick Howard Sproule
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Air Force
Pilot in Training

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

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