The ZC1 Field Radio and ZA1 Amplifier RF were first
issued to front line troops of NZ's 3rd Division in Guadalcanal in the
The troops barely had time to unpack and become
familiar with their new radios before they had to repack them in
preparation for the landings on Vella Lavella. ZC1 sets went
ashore with the first waves of the attack. The ZC1 proved to be
more effective in the dense wet tropical bush than other radio equipment
in use. Used in the front line in conjunction with the American
No. 48 pack set, the ZC1's ease of use and relative effectiveness in the
conditions was quickly appreciated by the troops.
As the Division advanced through the islands and
Field Command Posts established, a number of ZA1 amplifiers were also
landed for use with the ZC1 for greater range as required.
Experience showed that although the sets worked well
enough the ZC1 Mk-1 required better "Tropicalisation" treatment and that
under certain operating conditions the ZA1 Mk-2 Amplifier was prone to
overheat in the hot and humid conditions of the Solomon Islands.
This led to the significantly better sealing and tropicalisation
techniques used in the ZC1 Mk-2 being developed and implemented.