Full Restoration of my 1956 Heathkit AR3 receiver


The following pictures show various stages of the full restoration of my 1956 Heathkit AR3 four band short wave receiver. Full restoration consist of complete disassembling of the receiver, cleaning and painting the chassis, and reassembling of the receiver with all new components, wiring, and mounting hardware.

Video link of my operational AR3 after completion of final testing.



The AR3 as it appeared when purchased from the eBay seller. The seller said there was a lot of hum in the audio so I knew it basically worked. Note the discoloration on the chassis, the disconnected dial lamps, and overheated and melted dial cover plastic. The rubber grommet is missing where the power cord enters the chassis rear panel.

The left picture shows the original wiring. If you look closely at the bottom of the can capacitor you will see junk coming out of the bottom. After the chassis was fully disassembled, an extensive amount of discoloration was found as shown in the middle picture. I sanded the chassis, cleaned the chassis then painted the chassis Rustolium Metallic Copper paint. The original capacitor can mounting holes did not line up with the new replacement can so I had to drill 2 new holes right next to the original holes.

The left picture shows the new Hayseedhamfest.com triple capacitor can (DX-100 can) mounted in the same hole as the original but with new mounting plate holes. The middle picture shows the chassis fully rewired with all new wiring, new multi-tab terminal strips, new 2 blade polarized power cord, and added fuse holder. The 2 IF transformers were disassembled and the mica material removed. The IF transformers were then reassembled, mounted on the chassis, and fixed 100pf mica caps were connected across the primary and secondary winding’s of each transformer as shown in the middle picture. The right picture shows the AR3 fully restored and waiting to be installed into its original cabinet. The dial lamp rubber grommets were dried out and no longer held the dial lamps. All existing and/or missing rubber grommets were replaced with new grommets and both dial lamps were replaced with new #47 lamps.

The fully restored AR3 receiver, powered up and working. The receiver is tuned to a local AM station, KPRV 1280Khz. The front panel and all the knobs were cleaned with Windex and liquid dish soap. The cabinet was thoroughly cleaned with Windex and Armor All. I really enjoyed restoring the AR3 just as I did to the AT1 transmitter.