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John H./A. Pennyworth

The BLACK BEAUTY's arsenal of gadgets
as seen on the TV series "THE GREEN HORNET "

Disclaimer: This collection of gadget descriptions is for fan educational and entertainment purposes only. Not intended to be taken literally or in a physical sense. Many aspects of this feature are based on fictional characters and technologies. Not for use as a technical or scientific work. Fans are welcome to add their photos and info, use Timebridge Workshop

Click underlined pictures for animation video, mouse over pixs for some info!

The Infra-Green Headlights
The original Dean Jeffries infra-green headlights are perhaps the first thing you might notice, a unique feature setting this TV crimefighter apart. Those cool rolling headlights, from regular to infra-green adds the signature style to Black Beauty.
The term 'infra-green' is defined primarily in the reader's mind. It is taken to mean something akin to it's cousin 'infra-red', like you see in the James Bond movies. 'Infra' means 'very low'.  Plus 'red' means the visible color red. So 'very low red' in this case pertains to the very lowest reds in the visual spectrum of light.
Likewise, 'infra green' is believed to be 'very low green'.
Also like its cousin 'infra-red', it is capable of being used to see in the dark of night. Their modern cousins, digital night-vision equipment sometimes use infra-green imaging. 
Of course no photo can ever replace the head-on look of these gadgets. No amount of ornate description in words approaches seeing them with your own eyes.  Seeing them that way leaves an impression no words on paper or PC monitor can relate.
While their designer and builder shared some interesting facts about about how the infra-greens were made, suffice it to say that there is enough about their construction to make them one-of-a-kind crimefighter gear.
So of course The Green Hornet had use of 'infra-green' technology, which seemed capable of many great tricks, an endless variation.
So next time Black Beauty goes streaking by on the deserted city streets, you'll know a little more about those odd green headlights. Facing forward with the regular headlights, and approaching menacingly in the deepest night.
Kato's Green Visor
One of the Beauty's least-known features, Kato's infra-green visor shows how this car was again ahead of its time, using an early version of stealth technology. Kato's infra-green visor was used as a combination filter and part of a two-way vision system that enabled the stealthy Black Beauty to 'see in the dark' with its infra-green headlights and Kato's visor.
The Front Rockets
The front rockets are 16 in number, 8 per side while the door and firing mechanisms are functional, the actual rocket firing for the TV show was done by 'wranglers', studio pyrotechnics experts who set up each shot for filming.
Primarily, the rockets are theatrical effects. They closely resemble those 'meteor' flares used by boaters, with a wax waterproof seal over the tube fronts which blows away when the effect is fired.
The Rear Rockets
The rear rockets are 20 in number, 10 per side. similarly, the rear rockets were also done as theatrical effects. No actual rockets were fired. They worked in conjunction with other arranged pyro effects to produce the visual effect of rockets firing and then impacting and exploding.
The front grill 'gas gun' is said to be capable of firing non-lethal 'Hornet gas' and this is probably where the 'gas gun' terminology originates.
However the control for this function is labeled 'flames'. So in addition to the Hornet gas, it is believed that other flammable gas could be loaded and ignited to produce the 'flames' for when the plot required Black Beauty to have this capablity. 
Another 'special effect' was the deployable flying remote scanner. Obviously this was not a real working item. Like several devices attributed to the Black Beauty's "rolling arsenal", it was done by specialists in the studio who produce the visual effects of a scanner.
The remote scanner could work as a remote TV camera and could also electronically track a 'bugged' vehicle remotely. This of course all linked to Black Beauty's viewscreens.  The scanner doors really open, and the scanner rises into 'launch' position.
Basically that's the extent of the physical mechanics for the remote scanner. The rest is Hollywood, as they say. 
The mortar was built into the scanner launcher, as another 'alternative armature', written into the story and 'custom-built' into Black Beauty as the need arose. Needless to say, the mortar was just like the front and rear rockets. The doors opened, the mortar rose out, scanner-style, and the firing and subsequent explosions from mortar shells landing were Hollywood pyrotechnic visuals.
The Secret Garage Turntable
Another amazing effect seen with the cars was Britt Reid's secret garage turntable. This used rams secretly mounted in both cars which when engaged allowed Britt's 1966 Chrysler 300 to be switched with the Black Beauty with a rolling floor mechanism.
This is another good example of Hollywoodism in the way the car was shown. This special Hollywood magic allowed cars to be suspended upside-down with no detrimental effects. Many, but not all of BBs more exotic armaments and capablities are really just creative writers and talented studio people making it 'real'.
So, while there really are deployable front and rear 'rams' (called rams on the control board, though they do not 'ram' anything) they are not used to hang Black Beauty upside down. 

sometimes this was used as the rear tv screen in several shots Front Screen
One of several screens, they appear and disappear at various times. Capable of remote TV when used with the remote scanner. Other functions might include remote sensing (tracking a 'bugged' vehicle) and also radar capability.
Used in conjuction with the rear speakers and sometimes the tape recorder to produce the effect of the Hornet being in two places at once, also monitors Air Force Frequency, Kato also receives the Green Hornet's gold watch audio transmissions here.
sometimes the other/front TV screen was used  as an insert shot  Rear Screen
Used in conjunction with the remote scanner, the rear view screen also has several modes and capabilities.
Similar to the front view screen, used as a remote TV or to track a marked vehicle remotely.
Rear Speaker and Oscilloscope
Multimode rear speaker and oscilloscope can track 'bugged' vehicles or those imaged by the remote scanner. Oscilloscope can pick up various sounds, vibrations or frequencies as programmed, used for Loud Speaker, Police Band audio, Scanner Tracker, Directional Finder, "Electronic Bug Detector" and "Jamming Signal"
Front Control Panel
This feature is another 'phantom hardware' installed but hidden.
The front control panel worked the rockets. mortar and gas gun as well as working the mysterious 'silent running' mode.
Rear Control Panel
The primary control panel (actually two) was located in the rear. Basically all armaments and functions are controllable from the rear controls. The primary control is a pull-down affair situated inside the back of the front seat. Specially built and situated to allow room to move even with the control board in the out position. A second control located inside the rear passanger's side door panel was not used on the show. 
The Hornet Phone
Black Beauty's phones were quite an innovation in their day, circa 1966.
BB1 has one phone, BB2 carries one front and back.
No info on whose name they're registered in, or whose checks pay the phone bills, just a super gadget to use to fight crime, which is what it's all about.
Another occasional feature was the smoke screen. This one is most likely a 'wrangled' effect, one made to be there just for the taping of the show.
A useful tool for foiling evildoers from tailgating, the smoke screen provides protection by hiding the
BB's solid image, making for difficult targeting.
Privacy Divider Glass Screen between the front and back of the Black Beauty.
THE SILENT GUN Homing Transmitter concealed in the Green Hornet's ring picked up by Kato's Headset
DEADLINE FOR DEATH/TROUBLE FOR PRINCE CHARMING The Green Hornet's watch is a voice transmitter to Kato, who speaks via a hand held CB mike
A RAY IS FOR KILLING/INVASION FROM OUTER SPACE Direction Finder hidden in Casey's compact, and the portable Scanner, picked up by the oscilloscope
CRIME WAVE/DEADLINE FOR DEATH/THE SILENT GUN Remote Secret Microphones picked up by the speaker units
 EAT, DRINK AND BE DEAD/DEADLINE FOR DEATH/SILENT GUN....actual model is a Playboy TP-421 made in Japan The Tape Recorder use for recording or playback
THE SECRET OF THE SALLY BELL The Remote Control Unit, able to drive, steer, remote fire the rockets
A RAY IS FOR KILLING/CRIME WAVE, THE SECRET OF THE SALLY BELL The Black Beauty is Laser proof, Bullet proof, and can be rigged for Silent Running


Click for my Green Hornet/Kato costume reference site

click for my Batmobile Gadgets page

Text/info provided by Dennis Rau et al via Lone Ranger/Green Hornet Timebridge