Model maker for sperry?

I just returned from my grandfather’s funeral. I knew that he worked for sperry building gyroscopes before the war but i just learned that after returning from wwii he spent a few years as a miniature model maker for sperry.

Anyone know what kind of models sperry built?

I wonder if they might have been mockup’s of equipment or perhaps pattern making for any moulding or casting which Sperry used quite a bit of in their designs. Some people might consider these models?

otherwise I am without any other ideas but when it comes to models of vessels, the USN would have an extremely detailed model built of each new vessel class and some of those are at the Navy Historical Center at the Washington Navy Yard where I believe they have a 25’ model of the IOWA class battleships which is breathtaking in its detail

also thought I’d ask where your grandfather served during the War? you were lucky to have him live so long…mine died in 1965 when I was just a boy


Sperry made RADAR systems, right?

Models are smaller version of full size ships, planes, etc.

Using scaling laws, lots of hard math, and some secret sauce, he may have made models for testing these systems.

He was a navigator on B-24 Liberators.

I believe the Sperry factory he worked in was in Brooklyn. His job building gyros qualified him for an exemption but he signed up anyway and sperry held his job for him when he returned.


Yes but also models were made of equipment or areas like shipyards. Just not sure what type of models they made.

I’m cueious because during his lunch break he made a few custom rings and my son just inherited a signet ring he made in the model shop. It would be interesting to have more of the story behind it.

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Museums in the UK,Australia and New Zealand have models of ships produced by the shipyard prior to construction. These were up to eight feet long and fully detailed and were originally displayed in the shipowners office. The shipyard also made a model of the forecastle to ensure the anchor and cable ran free and the cable self stowed. A practice discontinued much to my frustration on some ships.
As second mate I sailed with a Sperry mark 8 (I think) gyrocompass. It was a large item in its own compartment with an alarm in my cabin and on the bridge in case of malfunction. Adjustments were required for changes in latitude.


When I heard Sperry and model making, I immediately thought of brass scale models. With scale models of the ship being fabricated out of brass and subjected to scale measurement, testers can predict the electromagnetic environment distribution of the ship. The scale brass model technique is still being used by the Navy today to verify topside design.


Do they still have a lead ocean to test them on?