September / October 2002
Remarkably, we find ourselves over a third of the way through the restoration project (or
we will when this one's completed). With this in mind, it was decided that we'd celebrate reaching
this landmark by tackling one of the serials previously missing.
Straight From The Shoulder was among the tapes donated to
us by John Wright, but it had not surfaced via the old time radio sites. Shortly after we broke
the news, we heard that a low grade copy had been made available via the binaries newsgroups,
so clearly someone had been hiding a copy for many a year. The existence of the poor quality
audio made us realise that it would make sense to work on this serial sooner rather than later -
to prevent poor quality copies proliferating.
Not that there aren't extremely good reasons for making this serial available now anyway! It's
something of a holy grail in Avengers terms - it is sourced from a script that was heavily
edited and rewritten for television,
Invitation to a Killing,
which eventually reached British and American television screens as
Have Guns - Will Haggle.
While the plot remains essentially the same, there are divergences, and these are captured for
Avengers fans to study in these radio adaptations.
Transfer of the six episodes from the untreated compact discs (taken direct from John Wright's tapes)
was performed on the evening of Wednesday 19th September 2002, dubbing to computer in CD quality
(44.1KHz sampling rate, 16 bit resolution).
The general sound quality on these episodes is excellent, although for some reason, there is a
high level of background noise on the tapes. Amplification and noise reduction on all episodes
was performed directly after the dubbing process. Noise had to be reduced by 25dB, in Sound Forge.
The episodes now sound remarkably clean, the sound quality unaffected by the filter.
Declicking proved a major slog and took a heck of a long time! Finally completed Sunday 13th
October 2002. The restoration project now goes on a short hiatus, while we get our breath back!
Alan and Alys Hayes