Forge Electronics was a sole trader company operated by Alan Bond, specialising in the design and manufacture of accessories for model boats and model aircraft. An active member of the Solent Radio Control Model Boat Club (SRCMBC), he was well known in the model boating world for his long association with TECHNOBOTS, for whom he designed a series of highly successful engine sound units.
Well over 1000 engine sound units of the various types have now been sold world-wide in countries such as Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and USA.
Further products had been developed for model boats and recently model aircraft, so he decided to offer these under the Forge Electronics branding and to additionally use more specialist companies better aligned to the modelling disciplines appropriate to the product(s) in question. In addition, these companies are also able to offer pro-active marketing and support at model shows and in the modelling press.
He spent a lifetime in electronics - much of it in control engineering, developing stabilised gun platforms for naval weapon systems, phase-locked loop capstan servos and tape tension servos for instrumentation tape recorders, motor drives and switched mode power supplies. Latterly he was the Technical Director of an aerospace company making Flight Data Recorders ("black boxes") for civil and military aircraft.
Forge Electronics has grown from a retirement hobby making sound units, speed controllers, rudder mixers etc for his own and other club members boats. More recently he became interested in flying electric control-line model aircraft and have developed a range of (flight profiling) timers which are now selling world-wide.
All of his products to date are based on microcontrollers and the bulk of the clever stuff is carried out in their firmware. In the main he had been using the PICAXE range of microcontrollers which are programmed in a dialect of BASIC which has many high level commands specifically designed for radio control and robotics use. Recently, to speed up the code for manipulating audio files in real-time, he had started using the ATMEGA chip, developing products on the ARDUINO platform, which enjoys a huge range of libraries for almost any function that you can think of.
When he was not sailing model boats, flying model aircraft or developing gizmos for them, he enjoyed motorcycling and scrutineer road racing at club level (NG Road Racing) , at national level (BSB) and occasionally at world level for the UK rounds of WSB
Why 'Forge' Electronics? - well, the grounds of his property used to house the village forge!
I got to know Alan very well over the last few years and will miss very much our weekly development and training sessions, not to mention the production line which he passed on to me so that he could continue developing the new technology.
Scale Warship Ltd