Re: From 2014: Tektronix Announces Winner of Europe’s Oldest Working Oscilloscope Contest

Dave Wise

Closest I got was high school (Benson Polytechnic in Portland OR) in the early 70's, where one electronics classroom had a 514D in a back corner. I always felt sorry for the poor old thing, which was never touched as far as I know. Also covetous; but the teacher wouldn't give it up. It was the best instrument in the room, our assigned tools being RCA service-grade boxes.

Dave Wise

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of Chuck Harris
Sent: Monday, September 16, 2019 1:20 PM
Subject: Re: [TekScopes] From 2014: Tektronix Announces Winner of Europe’s Oldest Working Oscilloscope Contest

Hi Dave,

I got my 513D in 1969 as a Christmas present from my EE
father, who worked for the Navy at the Pentagon at the time.

He had some exposure to the instrument, and picked it out

I am abundantly aware that the D stands for delay line, as my
father went out of his way to explain, and demonstrate the
significance of that delay line back in 1969. The brain does
what the brain does.

I have no idea what the military contract was that was mentioned
in the TekWiki, only that the 513D came out well before the 517
did. The 513D was mentioned in a 1949 sales blurb, that can be
seen on the tekwiki. The "D" letter came out as an afterthought,
when tek realized they could sell a cheaper scope if they left
that part off. I doubt many got sold.

My DOD EE dad did tell me that the Navy was rather upset with
tektronix during those years because tektronix steadfastly refused
to make ruggedized versions of their scopes.

Tektronix declined the Navy's request because they felt they had
business enough without attempting to meet the Navy's demands.

Contracting engineers kept breaking Navy rules by hauling their
civy tektronix scopes on board the Navy's submarines and ships.
This long preceded the whole LaVoie thing.

Shortly after my Dad gave the present, he borrowed it to work on
a TV, and proceeded to burn out the vertical attenuator switch
and the vertical preamp. So for me the learning fun began.

-Chuck Harris

Dave Wise wrote:
I'm guilty too!

Do you think the 513 was the military contract (1949-1950) that TekWiki says led to the 517, model not identified in the 517 article?

And note that the non-suffix 513 was distributed; once again, "D" signified Delay Line.


Those rows of tubes marching off to the horizon are amazing.

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