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Reviews Categories | Receivers: General Coverage | Lafayette HA-63 Help

Reviews Summary for Lafayette HA-63
Lafayette HA-63 Reviews: 3 Average rating: 4.0/5 MSRP: $$50-$65
Description: Vacuum tube receiver with 7 tubes plus semiconductors. General coverage
Product is not in production.
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W3JRR Rating: 4/5 Dec 10, 2014 19:44 Send this review to a friend
Decent for Casual Listening  Time owned: more than 12 months
I had one of the very first HA-63 radios shipped to the USA, in 1964; I was on the waiting list for the first shipment. After 5 years I sold the radio, however I bought one on Ebay about 5 years ago. Back in the day (I was 15) I got QSL cards from around the world. I copied a lot of code from W1AW as well. It was a decent receiver for shortwave listening but not of the caliber of the Hammarlund and Hallicrafters mid range units. I also added a Heathkit Q-multiplier which really makes a difference, especially for receiving code.

Still a good receiver for casual short wave listening. It is not good at SSB but does receiver code well enough.
AE6C Rating: 4/5 Aug 15, 2014 22:40 Send this review to a friend
Great first SWL receiver  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought my HA-63 new in 1965 direct from the Lafayette catalog. It was a cut above the typical AA5 type SWL receiver because it had an effective RF stage, good electrical bandspread, and a power transformer. For SWL use I was very happy with it. It had good sensitivity and adequate BW. After warm up it was reasonably stable. Mechanical stability was excellent. Overall it ran well and was a lot of fun to use, especially on AM. When I got my novice ticket I finally discovered its limitations :-) So I upgraded to a used HQ-170, which was of course a major step up. But fortunately I managed to hang on to the HA-63 and still use it occasionally to this day.

It doesn't turn up nearly as often as the other Lafayette vintage tube receivers (which like the HA-63 were made by Trio-Kenwood) so you won't run across a lot of buying opportunities. But when you do the price will be relatively low and well worth the fun of restoring it.
N4UE Rating: 4/5 Sep 25, 2008 19:54 Send this review to a friend
Good radio for a youngster  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
A while back, I found a HA-63 on ePay, er, eBay, pretty cheap. I had never seen one before, so I took the plunge.
It was deaf as a rock. Someone had done some unknown changes to the antenna coils, moving wires around, due to installation of an SO-239. Anyway, I got it working pretty good, so I disassembled it for a good cleaning. I then found out just how fragile the dial marking on the glass were! I literally 'wiped them off"...
I was pretty distressed, not for the loss of a few dollars, but for ruining what Osterman describes as 'rare'.

I bought a digital dial kit from N3ZI and fabricated a Lexan face to replace the glass. Repainting the covers was the final step.
Recently, ANOTHER one came up for sale. I bought that one also, kinda for revenge.
Anyway, this one was much nicer and during the course of the restoration, I realized I had neglected to check the bypass and coupling caps in the first radio. All of those caps in both radios were very, very leaky. After seeing how great the new radio played, I replaced them in the first radio. As usual, the diference was pretty dramatic. Yes, up on 28 MHz, these are not gonna compete with your Orion, etc, but up to 20 MHZ or so, they work darn good.
They even have an S-meter, but you better have good eyes, 'cause it's small.

Although most newcomers to SWLing would be happier with digital readout, the analog dial and 0-100 Bandspread is still fun.
With N3ZI's dial, tun on the radio, when the tubes warm up, the display functions. Twist in 10.000 or 15.000 MHz and WWV is RIGHT there. Cool!
I was going to give these a '3', but they are pretty well made, and work great.
By the way, I don't think I have ever gone through a Lafayette tube radio (I have 15 or so), and found a NON-Lafayette tube! Pretty good, eh?



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