Recollections of BBC engineering from 1922 to 1997
The British Broadcasting Corporation
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Designs Department - Engineering Design Information Sheets

Home Up EDI Links

Definitive information about many designs

A least 10% of the designs were described in 561 EDI sheets and they can be viewed by following the instructions on this page.  Although 10% doesn't seem to be a large amount, they describe a much larger proportion of the most significant designs.  (The 10% estimate might also be too low, see below.)

In order to access the EDI sheets it is best to download, save and open an Excel spreadsheet.  Then, by clicking a link in the spreadsheet while your computer is on line, the chosen EDI sheet will open in your browser using Adobe Acrobat Reader.  The typical file size is 350KB.

Either of these spreadsheets can be used (right click and select Save Target As):-

  1. Code - EDI List2.xls is relatively quick to download (96KB) and it lists the codes of all equipment that is described in EDI sheets.  It also lists some EDI sheets that were not directly associated with specific equipment codes.
  2. Code Record2.xls (603KB) is an attempt to list every coded design.  It includes basic descriptions of the codes and, where known, it provides more information about the designs.  The intention is to develop this spreadsheet from information provided by contributors to this web site.

As an alternative to the first option, click EDI Links in the menu above.  This will load a large web page containing the list (616KB. This is larger than the first spreadsheet, which uses a formula to compile the web addresses).

Based on the assumptions described in CodeRecord1.xls it seems that Designs Department, along with some other departments, produced about 5000 designs between 1969 and 1993. If about 50 engineers were involved at any one time, this means that they each produced about four designs a year on average. The complexity of the designs varied greatly, but this is probably a realistic figure and suggests that the assumptions made to compile the spreadsheet are reasonable. (For many years a large book of coded designs was produced annually.)

All the files were checked on 4 January 2006 using Norton Internet Security 2006, but the usual disclaimer applies!

Click here if you need to download the Reader: Get Adobe Reader.