The company that became Heathkit grew out of the E.B. Heath Aerial Vehicle Co, established in Chicago in 1913. Back then, Edward Heath was a budding aviator and airplane designer, and the company he founded sold airplane parts such as radiators and wheels. After building and testing several models, with names like the Feather, Favorite, and Tomboy, in 1926 Heath constructed the single-passenger, open-cockpit Parasol, which had a wingspan of 25 feet and was powered by a 25 hp motorcycle engine. Early versions of the plane sold for just $595, but many more aviation enthusiasts bought the blueprints for just $5.

Tragically, Heath was killed in a test flight in 1931, and in 1935 his bankrupt airplane-parts company was purchased by Howard Anthony, who had been a Heath customer. During World War II, the Heath Company, as it was now known, supplied the military with airplane parts, including radios. After the war, Anthony purchased a large lot of five-inch cathode ray tubes, which he used as the key ingredient in a build-it-yourself oscilloscope kit (model O-1), which sold for under $50. The kits caught on and soon Heath was producing vacuum tube volt meters, condenser checkers, and other electronics-testing instruments. Each kit was accompanied by a detailed manual, with exploded diagrams and step-by-step instructions designed to make Heath products accessible to beginners.

In 1954, Howard, too, was killed in an airplane accident, prompting the sale of the company in 1955 to Daystrom. Soon, the HeathKit line expanded to include home-electronics equipment such as amplifiers, tuners, and speakers, as well as Ham radios. In 1978, it even released a computer kit, the Heathkit H8.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob is an extensive resource on all types of audio electronics organized by manufacturer, from Aiwa to… [read review or visit site]



Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Heathkit Sb-230 1.2 Kw Conduction Cooled Linear Amplifier WorkingHeathkit W5m Mono Tube Power Amplifier, Vintage, No ReserveHeathkit Sb-101 Ssb Cw Transceiver Short Wave RadioHeathkit Aa-121 El34/6ca7 Pp 80-watt Stereo Tube Power Amp Amplifier Works! Heathkit Hw-8 Ham RadioHeathkit Sb 102 Radio TransceiverHeathkit Monitor Scope, Model Sb-610Nos Heathkit Im-5238 Ac Voltmeter Unassembled Kit W/manual UnbuiltScarce Heathkit Hft-9 Qrp Antenna Tuner For Hw9 Series - Handles Up To 100 Watts Heathkit Sb-630 Station Digital Clock, Timer, Power/swr Meter & Patch Console Heathkit W-5m Tube Mono Power Amplifier + Free PreampHeathkit Tube 14 Watt Hi Fi Amplifier (el84 Ouputs)Heathkit Hw-7 Qrp,xcvr,xtal Control,not Tested,manual,power SupplyVery Very Nice Heathkit Capacitor Checker ( Works Great)Heathkit Unbuilt Digital Clock Gc-1108Amateur Radio Transceiver, 6-meters, Heathkit Model Sb-110aHeathkit Hw 8 Cw Transceiver With Power SupplyVery Nice Condition Quality Heathkit Sb-610 Monitor Scope Needs Some TlcVintage Heathkit Sb-400 Ssb/cw Transmitter /w Not Original Power Cord Powers OnHeathkit Im 18 VtvmWorking Classic Heathkit Dx 40 Cw/phone Transmitter Dx 35 20 60 Receiver Heathkit Hp-23b Power SupplyHam Radio Alignment Tools / Receiver / Transmitter / Heath Kit HeathkitHeathkit Heath Electro Voice Model 638 Desk Mic For Drake T-4xc - SweetHeathkit Hd-1416 Code Practice Oscillator W/assembly Manual 99%complete NosVintage Heathkit Mono Tube Amplifier Model A-9Vintage Heathkit Model Gc-1 Mohican Shortwave Radio Receiver Gunsmiths EstateHeathkit A-7 Tube Integrated Amplifier For Parts Or RestorationHeathkit Hx-1681 Cw TransmitterHeathkit 20 Watt Amplifier W4-am Used Heathkit Sb-102 PartsHeathkit Aa-100 Tube Amplifier Good Working ConditionHeathkit Hp-23b Ac Power Supply For Heathkit Tube Transceivers Vintage Heathkit It-11 Capacitor Tester Checker Working With ProbesHeathkit Hero 1 RobotHeathkit It 11Vintage Heathkit/ Daystrom Pawnee Hw-20 TransceiverHeathkit Hd-1234 Ham Radio/cb Antenna Coax Switch Hd1234Excellent Condition Heathkit Model Hdp-121a Mic - For Your Vintage StationVintage Vtvm Heathkit Vacuum Tube Voltmeter(2) Vintage Heathkit Digital Multimeters Im-1202 Tested WorkingHeathkit Sb-102 Knob Set. Used. Vintage Ham Radio.Used Heathkit Sb-102 PartsHeathkit Microcomputer Learning System Model 3400 SeriesVintage Heathkit Fet Transistor TesterVintage Heathkit Hw 101 Radio Transceiver Shortwave Ham Transistors Tube ClassicVintage Heathkit Tube Set Preamplifier Wa-p2, Fm Tuner Fb-3a And Am Tuner Bc-1aAstatic D-104 On "t-ug8" Stand Desk Mic For 2 Pin Heathkit Rigs #2 - ExcellentHeathkit Hw 101 Radio Transceiver Hp-23 Power Supply Hdp-21aHeathkit Hero JrHeathkit Hd-1250 Solid State Dip Meter (working)Heathkit Digital Scale (gd-1186) *not Assembled*Astatic D-104 On "t-ug8" Stand Desk Mic For 2 Pin Heathkit Rigs #1 - Super NiceHeathkit Heath Hd-1410 Iambic Keyer - Very NiceHeathkit Digital Weather Computer Meter Id-4001, Heathkit Weather ComputerHeathkit Gc-1000 For Parts Or Not WorkingUsed Heathkit Sb-102 PartHeathkit Hw-2036aHeathkit Signal Tracer Model It-12, Series 109 114119Heathkit Capacitor Checker Test Equipment