Adrian had arrived at a significant time in WTVT's historythe dawn of local, live colorcasting.  "Bill Witt was an 'RCA' guy to the max and ordered the new RCA TK-42 color cameras in the fall of '65," recalls Adrian.  "He was getting 3 color cameras for Tampa and one to be used in St. Pete at the pier studio.  WFLA only had two on order.  They actually sent me to the TK-42 school in Camden, New Jersey.  I spent a week up there but the RCA people didn't know that much about the new cameras.  After watching the 'experts' try to align the cameras I thought 'we've got some serious work to do back home.'  "

Adrian crimps his way to color.

Returning to Tampa, Adrian joined the engineering effort to update the facility for color.  "Back when the station was purchased from the original owners by the Gaylord people (1956), they sent engineers down from WKY-TV to rewire the placenew cables and patch panelsand it was all done right because the 'big boys' from WKY did it.  For the switchover to color, we basically took every piece of cable out of the trench and replaced it." 

Channel 13 had received a color film chain from RCA when they bought the original equipment package in 1955.  "It was the same chain as used at WFLA, explains Adrian.  "But 13's hardly worked as a color film chain, and had not been used for color in a number of years.  I spent a lot of time getting it working again.  When Channel 13 went color in June of 1966, the original chain came on-line first."

We upgraded the RCA video tape recorders (TR-22) to low-band color and were playing syndicated shows like "Merv Griffin" in color.  It was like taking a bare-bones machine, and adding modifications to itand it was marginally successful.  The quality was not great, and didn't have the sophisticated time-base correction that later models had.  There was a lot of color banding and some skewing of the picturebut it was color.  We'd always had an Ampex VTR in the mobile unit, and later we chose all new high-band Ampex machines for the station's tape room.  That included the smaller Ampex 1200 and the VR-2000 with the air-bearing heads, all the colortec and amptec time base correctors and velocity compensatorsevery bell and whistle that would help that machine make good colorand they worked pretty well.  It was almost impossible to tell the tape playback from live."