Alarm Controls: The Right Way

Those aren’t alarm pushbuttons. These are alarm pushbuttons:

Submarine Albacore - alarm pushbuttons

Submarine Albacore – alarm pushbuttons

They’re in the USS Albacore and obviously intended for use by someone in a hurry: the tactile shapes tell your fingers everything they need to know. If I understand the ship’s history, the┬áCollision Alarm switch contacts closed only during tests, although they did have a close call with the sub towing the (unpowered) Albacore from the Philly boneyard to its final resting site.

According to the information we saw, the control board was refitted / replaced / redone to remove classified hardware, so the woodgrain Formica background may not be original. On the other hand, this was a sub intended for extensive experimentation, so maybe they used a cheap and easily machined material.

(Headfake to the Crocodile Dundee knife meme.)

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  1. #1 by rkward on 2012-10-21 - 09:33

    At first glance it looked like one of the peg and hole children’s toys, but I did immediately realize before reading your description that it was for tactile use in low light or dark conditions.

    • #2 by Ed on 2012-10-21 - 13:13

      When you need that button in the middle, you need it bad

      The operating seats were to the left of those switches, making the Diving Alarm the easiest to reach (for right-handers, anyway) and you could avoid “the switch in the middle” by touch.

      Easier than trying to navigate a touch-screen display, I think.