Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /homepages/11/d132647312/htdocs/Amfone/mkportal/include/SMF/smf_out.php on line 47
Lafayette Radio (LRE) Newark NJ




 
The AM Forum
May 21, 2019, 05:18:38 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
 
   Home   Help Calendar Links Staff List Gallery Login Register  
Pages: 1 [2]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Lafayette Radio (LRE) Newark NJ  (Read 9259 times)
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
WB2CAU
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 342


« Reply #25 on: May 25, 2016, 09:43:18 AM »


Good old Laughingyet in their pre-Japanese import daze sold a lot of re-branded Hallicrafters CB and ham transceivers, tanks for the mammary.


With two exceptions, all US-made tube type CB transceivers, and their 6m and 10m transceivers, 1964 and prior, were produced by USL.  The two exceptions were the HB-333 (Polytronics) and HB-266 (Hammarlund).  

There was never a Lafayette brand multi-band HF transceiver.  

The first Japanese-produced tube-type CB in 1964 was the HB-400.

 
Logged

"Life is tough, but it's tougher if you're stupid." -- John Wayne
w2rba
Contributing
Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1


« Reply #26 on: May 28, 2016, 01:22:49 AM »

Ah, good times, back in the early 60s when, at the tender young age of 12 I received my first electronic kit from my father - a KT-135 "Explor-Air" three tube regen kit, through which I discovered AM on 75 meters in the late afternoon and evenings; what a hoot!  Got me interested in ham stuff.  Then, in 1964, my father gave me a "Starflite" transmitter kit (a clone of the Heathkit DX-60, if I'm not mistaken; still have it...), a KT-390.  I could write a ton of stuff about that "dangerous" kit, but it worked.; with an Eico plate modulator, it made for a decent AM rig.

But the highlight of my relationship with Lafayette was in the summer of 1968, right before college, when I saw a want-ad for employment at the main headquarters store in Syosset, NY, on route 25A.  I applied and was granted a position (to my later chagrin, however, I found I was being hired as a strike breaker).  I was in the returns department and it was a fairly dismal job -- but they discovered I had some knowledge about parts (they didn't know what they sold except for the big ticket items), so I was eventually transferred to the sales desk and given the task of taking care of the little sales that no one else wanted to deal with.  That was actually fun.  (Fun fact: the single most desired item -- a channel knob for a TV -- was one with which I could offer no help, we just didn't carry them.)

But the best part was when they brought over some techs from Japan to fix a defect that had made is through the assembly of one of their $300 high-end stereo receivers/amps (lord knows I cannot remember which one).  The guys worked long hours taking brand-new amps apart, changing some parts, and then wrapping them up like new.  And the guys in the front once sent me out to pick up dinner for these Japanese guys -- from the local Chinese restaurant(!).  I really did my part in the repair job (NOT).

I must have lasted two months before I quit -- and they soon settled the strike anyway.  Lafayette was a cheap bastard, but then again, so was everyone else.

Logged
Pete, WA2CWA
Moderator
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 7690


CQ CQ CONTEST


WWW
« Reply #27 on: May 28, 2016, 03:08:40 AM »


But the best part was when they brought over some techs from Japan to fix a defect that had made is through the assembly of one of their $300 high-end stereo receivers/amps (lord knows I cannot remember which one).  The guys worked long hours taking brand-new amps apart, changing some parts, and then wrapping them up like new.  And the guys in the front once sent me out to pick up dinner for these Japanese guys -- from the local Chinese restaurant(!).  I really did my part in the repair job (NOT).

I must have lasted two months before I quit -- and they soon settled the strike anyway.  Lafayette was a cheap bastard, but then again, so was everyone else.

Might have been the LR-1200T receiver. I think they designed the amplifier portion of this receiver with one eye closed. In the 1968 catalog, the LR-1200T was dropped and the LR-1500T took its place. Every time I had to repair a LR-1200T, it was a pain in the butt.
Logged

Pete, WA2CWA - "A Cluttered Desk is a Sign of Genius"
WB2CAU
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 342


« Reply #28 on: May 28, 2016, 10:59:08 AM »

Ah, good times, back in the early 60s when, at the tender young age of 12 I received my first electronic kit from my father - a KT-135 "Explor-Air" three tube regen kit, through which I discovered AM on 75 meters in the late afternoon and evenings; what a hoot!  Got me interested in ham stuff.  Then, in 1964, my father gave me a "Starflite" transmitter kit (a clone of the Heathkit DX-60, if I'm not mistaken; still have it...), a KT-390.  I could write a ton of stuff about that "dangerous" kit, but it worked.; with an Eico plate modulator, it made for a decent AM rig.

But the highlight of my relationship with Lafayette was in the summer of 1968, right before college, when I saw a want-ad for employment at the main headquarters store in Syosset, NY, on route 25A.  I applied and was granted a position (to my later chagrin, however, I found I was being hired as a strike breaker).  I was in the returns department and it was a fairly dismal job -- but they discovered I had some knowledge about parts (they didn't know what they sold except for the big ticket items), so I was eventually transferred to the sales desk and given the task of taking care of the little sales that no one else wanted to deal with.  That was actually fun.  (Fun fact: the single most desired item -- a channel knob for a TV -- was one with which I could offer no help, we just didn't carry them.)

But the best part was when they brought over some techs from Japan to fix a defect that had made is through the assembly of one of their $300 high-end stereo receivers/amps (lord knows I cannot remember which one).  The guys worked long hours taking brand-new amps apart, changing some parts, and then wrapping them up like new.  And the guys in the front once sent me out to pick up dinner for these Japanese guys -- from the local Chinese restaurant(!).  I really did my part in the repair job (NOT).

I must have lasted two months before I quit -- and they soon settled the strike anyway.  Lafayette was a cheap bastard, but then again, so was everyone else.



A couple of factual corrections, if I may;  Lafayette was on Rt 25 (Jericho Turnpike), not 25A (Northern Boulevard).  And the strike was in June 1969, not 1968. 

I worked in the QC department and we had moved from the middle of the Syosset warehouse in September 1968 into a brand new building in Hauppauge at 150 Engineers Road. 

The Japanese techs were from a couple different contract companies at the time while I worked there.  There wasn't enough space for them in the service department so the guys from Nakamichi (they made Lafayette's tape decks at the time) worked at benches in the QC department doing repairs there.  They were always very polite and friendly and had basic English language skills.  They were all good guys.

Eric
Logged

"Life is tough, but it's tougher if you're stupid." -- John Wayne
WB2CAU
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 342


« Reply #29 on: May 28, 2016, 11:19:13 AM »


But the best part was when they brought over some techs from Japan to fix a defect that had made is through the assembly of one of their $300 high-end stereo receivers/amps (lord knows I cannot remember which one).  The guys worked long hours taking brand-new amps apart, changing some parts, and then wrapping them up like new.  And the guys in the front once sent me out to pick up dinner for these Japanese guys -- from the local Chinese restaurant(!).  I really did my part in the repair job (NOT).

I must have lasted two months before I quit -- and they soon settled the strike anyway.  Lafayette was a cheap bastard, but then again, so was everyone else.

Might have been the LR-1200T receiver. I think they designed the amplifier portion of this receiver with one eye closed. In the 1968 catalog, the LR-1200T was dropped and the LR-1500T took its place. Every time I had to repair a LR-1200T, it was a pain in the butt.

The LR-1500T was current when I started working there in January 1968.  The next model lower in price at that time was the LR-1000T.  Strangely, although the LR-1200T had been discontinued in 1967 before I started there, in mid 1968 a rather large shipment of brand new LR-1200Ts arrived from Japan for us to QC.  I never knew the reason for this, only assumed that the manufacturer (Fujitsu) had a stockpile of LR-1200Ts built, prior to the discontinuance of the model, that were unsold to Lafayette.  Maybe they were cleaning house at Fujitsu.

The LR-500T, LR-1000T, and the LR-1500T were initially made by Fujitsu for Lafayette.  During my tenure at Lafayette, the manufacturer of those models changed to a company called Planet Research, presumably because Fujitsu had evolved and were no longer going to produce that type of product.  Everything about those Planet Research units was still identical to the Fujitsu units so there was no clue that a different company was producing them for Lafayette.  

The other possibility is that Fujitsu "spun off" the contract manufacturing division forming a new company called Planet Research and it was just a paper (and name) change.  These are questions I'll probably never have an answer for.

Eric
Logged

"Life is tough, but it's tougher if you're stupid." -- John Wayne
KD6VXI
Contributing
Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1995


Making AM GREAT Again!


« Reply #30 on: May 28, 2016, 01:47:29 PM »

Wow.   History here.

I grew to LOATHE anything Fujitsu (ten) when I worked car audio,  mid 80s to mid 90s.  Even their eclipse line (with a thousand dollar deck in 90/91) was a pain in the posterior.

Nakamichi on the other hand.   Their engineers came up with some really interesting ideas.   Too bad the compact disc came along.

The Nak Dragon is an amazing deck.

--Shane
KD6VXI
Logged
Pete, WA2CWA
Moderator
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 7690


CQ CQ CONTEST


WWW
« Reply #31 on: May 28, 2016, 01:48:28 PM »

The LR-500T, 1000T, and 1500T weren't bad receivers although the 500T had a habit of blowing the power transformer. I still I still have a few transformers here (NOS). With these three receivers, if you blew the audio output transistors, you normally blew the driver transistors as well. The LR500TA, 1000TA, and 1500TA versions seem to have better reliability. I can't remember if it was the LR-1500T or 1500TA that won consumer's best receiver award two years in a row. Under the Lafayette name, there were a number of very good receivers, tuners, and amplifiers. In the mid 70's, the LR-2020, 3030, 5555, and 9090 receiver series were tops in performance. My first Lafayette tuner was the LT-450T, which was also used as the front-end tuner section in the LR-1500T, was fantastic for pulling out weak AM and FM signals.

For the readers, if you ever hear Eric and I in a QSO, it typically will roll into a Lafayette conversation, which if it wasn't for time constraints, would probably go on for hours.  Cheesy

I know I've said this in other threads but working for Lafayette made a lasting impression on me. It was fun, enjoyable, educational, and helped develop a set of skills that I continue to use to this day. Even today, I can picture walking through the front door of both main stores I worked at and I can tell you the exact customer floor layout and the back room layout of each store.
Logged

Pete, WA2CWA - "A Cluttered Desk is a Sign of Genius"
WB2CAU
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 342


« Reply #32 on: May 28, 2016, 02:27:55 PM »


I can't remember if it was the LR-1500T or 1500TA that won consumer's best receiver award two years in a row. Under the Lafayette name, there were a number of very good receivers, tuners, and amplifiers. In the mid 70's, the LR-2020, 3030, 5555, and 9090 receiver series were tops in performance. My first Lafayette tuner was the LT-450T, which was also used as the front-end tuner section in the LR-1500T, was fantastic for pulling out weak AM and FM signals.


Pete, I do know that the LR-1500T was a Consumer Reports best buy but I don't recall if the 1500TA got the same accolades or not.  For the money they were great at the time.  However, the power output figures were wildly inflated in the ads at that time so you have to make a conversion back to the RMS value into an 8 ohm load at less than a specified THD (both channels driven) as the FTC later mandated (in the 1970s) for all marketers to level the playing field.  

Are you sure you didn't mean the LT-425T instead of the LT-450T?  The LT-425T ran concurrently with the series you mentioned and I agree that it was a top notch FM tuner.  I had one but later sold it.  More recently I picked up another one with matching LA-85T (or is it an LA-125T, forgetting here) that will probably never get used but it's nice to have as a memento.  Lafayette replaced the LT-425T with the LT-725(T?) as I recall.  I liked the LT-425T better, for no particular reason.

And my time working for Lafayette made an impression on me also.  I didn't make a lot of money there but I really liked the place.  Not only that, but prior to working there, I was a self-described Lafayette groupie.  Lafayette did a lot to cultivate my interest in electronics and led me to a lifelong career and hobby in radio and electronics. 

Eric
Logged

"Life is tough, but it's tougher if you're stupid." -- John Wayne
Pete, WA2CWA
Moderator
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 7690


CQ CQ CONTEST


WWW
« Reply #33 on: May 28, 2016, 04:35:37 PM »


I can't remember if it was the LR-1500T or 1500TA that won consumer's best receiver award two years in a row. Under the Lafayette name, there were a number of very good receivers, tuners, and amplifiers. In the mid 70's, the LR-2020, 3030, 5555, and 9090 receiver series were tops in performance. My first Lafayette tuner was the LT-450T, which was also used as the front-end tuner section in the LR-1500T, was fantastic for pulling out weak AM and FM signals.


Pete, I do know that the LR-1500T was a Consumer Reports best buy but I don't recall if the 1500TA got the same accolades or not.  For the money they were great at the time.  However, the power output figures were wildly inflated in the ads at that time so you have to make a conversion back to the RMS value into an 8 ohm load at less than a specified THD (both channels driven) as the FTC later mandated (in the 1970s) for all marketers to level the playing field.  

Are you sure you didn't mean the LT-425T instead of the LT-450T?  The LT-425T ran concurrently with the series you mentioned and I agree that it was a top notch FM tuner.  I had one but later sold it.  More recently I picked up another one with matching LA-85T (or is it an LA-125T, forgetting here) that will probably never get used but it's nice to have as a memento.  Lafayette replaced the LT-425T with the LT-725(T?) as I recall.  I liked the LT-425T better, for no particular reason.

And my time working for Lafayette made an impression on me also.  I didn't make a lot of money there but I really liked the place.  Not only that, but prior to working there, I was a self-described Lafayette groupie.  Lafayette did a lot to cultivate my interest in electronics and led me to a lifelong career and hobby in radio and electronics. 

Eric
You right Eric, it was the LR-1500T that made the receiver listing in consumer reports best buy. I remember now we had to put up a special display in the sound room highlighting that achievement. I'm not sure if Consumer's ever reviewed the LR-1500TA.

Don't know where I came up with LT-450T tuner although we did have a LR-450T receiver. It was the LT-425T. I sold the LT-425T at BARA years ago after I picked up a Lafayette LT-D10 tuner at Dayton. Still have that. Always like the LT-125T amplifier series. Good design and output. Used a pair of 2SD-91's per channel. Great workhorse output transistor.

My start at Lafayette was rather simple. I was at college, needed some spending money; saw a classified ad in the local paper where the Plainfield store was looking for part-time help working in the CB department and some electronic experience.
Logged

Pete, WA2CWA - "A Cluttered Desk is a Sign of Genius"
WA2SQQ
Contributing
Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 657


« Reply #34 on: April 16, 2019, 03:33:08 PM »

Pete
Do you happen to remember what the p/n is for that IC (ICF-1) Used your troubleshooting technique and it shouts bad IC, My device has no number in it.

So all this LRE reminiscing motivated me to assign the next project - to get my first real stereo system back up and running. I recall going to Lafayette in Newark and buying the LA-750 and LT-725. I still have the original boxes!  Last night I powered the amp up and aside from noisy pots and switches it sounds remarkably good. The tuner lights up, but has very low sensitivity on FM - AM works just fine. I'm hoping it's just some bad caps that have dried up. The LT-725 had a built in SCA decoder which I figured out how to activate. I remember listening to PRN (Physician's Radio Network) on the sub-carrier of a local NYC station. Gotta see if I can find a service manual for the tuner on line. By this time I deserves an alignment!

The common problem for low sensitivity for the LT-725 is a bad MPF-107 FET in the front end and an even more common problem is a bad ICF-1 IC in the IF chain. These were notorious for failing. When they fail, they tend to act as attenuators. To test, connect a .01 mfd cap on the input side of the IC and connect the other end of the cap to the output side of the IC. If the volume and signal strength come up, the IC is bad.
In the LT-725A, the SCA decoder was removed due to some legal issues.
Logged
AG5UM
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 21


« Reply #35 on: April 16, 2019, 05:41:12 PM »

Lafayette is actually a very OLD American radio name going back to at least the 1930's.
the John Rider  "perpetual trouble shooter's manuals" are full of the Lafayette Antique radio schematics.
the old radios are quite collectable.
It's a real SHAME they eventually became known as cheap japan junk and went bankrupt.
what a shame, for an old American Co.
73's
Logged
WA2SQQ
Contributing
Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 657


« Reply #36 on: April 17, 2019, 10:19:23 AM »

I have the schematic, but the IC is not called out by the actual p/n. Looked last night and on the cover of a late 60's catalog they call out that "Integrated Circuits" are now being used. The photo was that of a ua703 which looks very similar to the device I have. Pin out also seems to match, so it may be a ua703.
Logged
AG5UM
Member

Offline Offline

Posts: 21


« Reply #37 on: April 17, 2019, 10:29:56 AM »

I'm sentimental about all the good old Amercan Companies, names we grew up with, when American Made,
meant something. If your a Lafayette collector, you should get a cool 1930's set to polish up and set in the
living room. First Radio's, First jobs, good memories, the stuff that makes collecting FUN!
73's
Logged
KD6VXI
Contributing
Member
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 1995


Making AM GREAT Again!


« Reply #38 on: April 17, 2019, 02:46:07 PM »

Pete hasn't been around for quite awhile.  You may want to try his website / business.

--Shane
KD6VXI
Logged
Pages: 1 [2]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

AMfone - Dedicated to Amplitude Modulation on the Amateur Radio Bands
 AMfone 2001-2015
Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
Page created in 0.066 seconds with 18 queries.