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Heathkit AR's

Guest SherwoodFool

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Guest SherwoodFool


My computer got stuck 4 times trying to post. I thought I had edited this.

Anyway, I was trying to find info on Heathkit AR's. Plans? Mod#'s,etc. Did anyone build a set?

Thanks for decoding the code.


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>I'd like to know more about 'em as well. Those AS-103A's are

>a bit of a mystery to me.

I've got four woofers from AS-103A's, just newly bought on eBay and they look exactly like AR-3a woofers from '72. What do you think about that? I once considered those back in the day. I still bought "Offical AR-3a's" after careful consideration and reading. AR's and this country were different and the 'best' in the world back then. Now it's something different.


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Guest linedrive

I've always wondered why anyone would ever bother with AR speakers as a Heathkit - installing the crossover, stuffing in fiberglass, and bolting the drivers down couldn't have been very fulfilling.

Then there's the question of cost - a new AR-2 was about a hundred dollars in 1960, while the birch-finished kit speaker was $80.00 (plus shipping charges).

How in the world did Heathkit make any money, essentially paying AR to ship them the speaker parts (which weighed at least as much as the assembled speakers), and then warehousing, advertising, merchandising, taking & fulfilling orders, and then backing up with their liberal service plan - all of this was what Acoustic Reserach, THE ACTUAL MANUFACTURER was already doing, but at a much better mark-up! Was Heath able to ship their sales directly from the AR warehouse in order to save a buck? What in the world made them work with what had to be such a tiny margin? Were these loss-leaders, offered to encourage folks to buy their whole systems from Heathkit?

Below is a listing for the Heathkit AR-2, from a 1961 Heath HiFi catalog:



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Hi Ted;

Heathkit had some excellent kits, with the best instructions, bar none.

There was that good feeling of accomplishment, when you were finished assembling their kits.

For quite a few years I could buy gator kits, pant legging protectors, from our local co-op, for $1.00 less than the finished product.

An hour of machine sewing for an amatuer was worth the added good feeling of having sewed it yourself.

We could also buy down sleeping bag kits, tent kits and on and on at considerable dollar savings.

After the second world war, money was scarce for most all people.

An option to build or assemble something for a substantial savings and most often better quality, not available at near those prices in local stores was clearly an option.

Heath and Dyanaco, among other notable companies, often offered items not available locally.

When the rush of Asian solid-state electronics started arriving in the '60's and on-ward, these type industries could not compete on a price match.

I saw camping kits start to cost as much as some finished products and sometimes more.

I also saw people and their life-styles change, to a more buy it now, ready made society.

If you had lived in the USA in the 1960's, you could have bought, for example, AR-3A's at about $150.00 each or less via a mailorder discounter.

Even your local retail dealers had a real tough time with those prices being offered.

I am guilty of buying my first pair from, Carston's Studios.

I paid about $147.00 U$ for, quantity one, shipped via REA Express.

My Canadian landed cost, was just about what the local dealers here paid for buying quantity 6 from the Canadian distributor.

Had I bought 2 at the same time, the local dealer would have needed to buy quantity 10 to get a better price than I paid.

Based only on full retail prices for AR-3A speakers, there would be a viable option with Heath AS-103's.

With AR being discounted Heath, among others, had no opportunity to compete in this arena.

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Guest SherwoodFool

>I've always wondered why anyone would ever bother with AR

>speakers as a Heathkit - installing the crossover, stuffing in

>fiberglass, and bolting the drivers down couldn't have been

>very fulfilling.


Now that I am retired & have time & tools,It seems I could build what I couldn't afford in 1972. Maybe even improve(AV shielding, cooled tweeters, etc.) w/o changing character of spkrs. Cost now doesn't make any dif. Especially since you can't buy classics anymore.



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