Thursday, May 23, 2013


     Once, there was a real Kluge:
     Myron E. Kluge, in fact.  In the years after WW II, he promised big things in the ham radio field, produced some fascinating ads featuring the very first "desk kilowatt" (a metal desk with a 1000W amplifier in it, a concept E. F. Johnson later built and sold in fair numbers) and faded from sight.

     Kluge Electronics had some interest in television (the 1946 "Radio" Handbook has an ad featuring the TV racks at Kluge Labs, looking neither more nor less of a kluge than anyone else's) and early FM but it either found a very obscure niche to vanish into or failed entirely.

     Update: Some kind of a (commercial broadcast?) Kludge transmitter, seen in 2007 by Garett Wollman in Salt Lake City, possibly at the KSL transmitter site. Pity it's not in better shape.  Clearly, there's a story to be told about Kluge, though it may be impossible to ferret it out.


  1. I forget where I was working at the time, but we used these little PC boards with solder pads on them called "Kludge Boards" for prototyping small circuits.

    They were blue glass-epoxy, and came in a variety of sizes.

    Anybody else remember them?

  2. "To kluge" is a venerable term in computing. Or possibly venal. Can't remember which. But I have done a more than a bit of it in my time.

  3. drjim: I've used a number of boards like that, both commercial and homebrew, but never heard them called by that name.

    Most places I've worked, a kluge usually involved electrical tape.

  4. A proper kluge must involve one or more from the following non-inclusive list: duct tape; sloppy, non-REMed code; bailing wire; blood; black electrical tape (the shiny kind, not the good stuff); a rock; masking tape which will harden to rock-like consistency; a wooden wedge; blobs of solder; glue in place of solder; gum; band-aids; paperclip; cable ties. Any additions?

  5. Binder twine should be up there with baling wire.

  6. FC: yer absolutely right. Thanks for the addition. My only explanation for having missed it is a gin-and-tonic. Or two. Oh, and just five minutes ago I repurposed two diaper pins. I feel so productive. Yesterday had much solder blobbing due to too much metal and not enough iron (on a non-critical connection).