Here’s yet another relic from the Cold War, and this time it’s British. This is the Plessey PDRM 82 Portable Dose Rate Meter, issued to armed forces, emergency services and Civil Defence personnel in the 1980s. Straight away we have to say that the likelihood of it ever registering anything on the 4-digit LCD display is very small, and if it does, congratulations! You’ve just survived a nuclear blast.

The PDRM-82 registers exposure to radioactivity (in terms of absorbed dose) in Centigrays/hour, and that’s a lot of radioactivity. In other words it’s designed to measure dangerously high levels but don’t let that put you off. It’s an interesting and very well built piece of kit. For its time this was a very sophisticated design.


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It is microprocessor controlled, hardened against Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) and it runs for up to 400 hours on three standard 1.5 volt C cells. It is housed in a tough, waterproof bright orange case with just one simple control On-Test/Off.

It may not do much in its natural state but there is plenty of scope for experimenters to tinker, and maybe juice it up. For anyone that is interested, there are details on the web of how to juice it up and get readings on the LCD by replacing the units Geiger Muller sensor.  They also come with a copy of the original additional instructions issued to members of the British Royal Observer Corps during The Cold War.

Time for some vital statistics:
  • Dimension 170 x 140 x 55mm
  • Weight, excluding batteries 400g
  • Accessories comprise: rigid carry strap, flexible lanyard, instructions and original box. 

Please Note: The boxes for this latest batch are not the best we've seen lately but, rest assured, these units are in as-new condition and we always make sure they pass their internal function test prior to despatch. We cannot guarantee they’ll be much use, though, unless you are likely to be exposed to lethal doses of radioactivity! 

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See Also The SPECIAL DEALS page. Occasionally we have PDRM-82s that failed the Power On test due to a failed GM tube. The original tubes are now virtually unobtainable but we've fitted an alternative tube, with slightly different characteristics, to get them up and running again, in some cases with improved sensitivity.




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PDRM 82 Portable Dose Rate Meter

  • Product Code: PDRM 82 Portable Dose Rate Meter
  • Availability: In Stock
  • £32.00