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  1. #1

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    Default Found some Ar 3a speakers that need help

    I was looking on craigs list and saw a nice KLH 18 FM tuner. My weekness is for vintage tuners because the manufactures today don't make quality tunes anymore. The owner writes back that the tuner is $50 and I say it's a deal. I go to pick up the tuner on Saturday morning and see the people are also moving and geating rid of much stuff. They are the original owners and tuner also has the original box and manual and looks new out of the box.

    I ask the big question what else are you getting rid of. She says we have some old Ar speakers. I tell my story about having the less expensive Ar 2ax speakers in my youth. She is trying to get rid of the Ar 3a speakers and shows them to me. They look new out of the box also. The grills are still attached to the speakers with no fading, and no scrathes on the wood. She even has the original cute speaker stands. I take them off her hands for $200.

    I get home and one speaker sounds bad. I pry off the grill cloth and see the foam on the woffer is not attached to the speaker base but attched well to the speaker cone. I apply some glue and weights to the foam rim, wait 5 hours for it to set up and hook it up. It plays really nice. The sound is very involving.

    Question: The reostates in the back of the speaker for adjusting the mid and hi and very noisy. Does any one know where to replace them? Or should I replace them?

    Does any one have any expience with these old speakers?

    Thanks for any help.

    Peter

  2. #2

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    The attenuators on the back? You could try deoxit if it's corrosion in the switches I would think.

    SWEET find on the 3a's. Selling mine is one of the dumber of the dumb things that I've done.

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut

  3. #3

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    I would like to replace them with just resistors because I never used them in the past.

    Some one said that the deoxit will work but that the problem will return.

    TroyD, you only have so much room. Things need to go.

    The 3as are heavy also.

  4. #4
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    Hello Troy,
    Sorry to interrupt this thread, especially since I have allot of respect for the AR products. But, Troy your PM mailbox is full and I have the Audio Amateur article on visiting Quad. If you'll email me your snail mail address I can send a copy.
    Now, back to your regularly scheduled thread.
    Ken

  5. #5

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    BZ, I hear you there.

    IF you ever feel the need to move those (or the KLH tuna, a true cool man item), lemme know. I've got family just up the road in Wells, ME and could save you the hassle of shipping.

    Ken, I'm on it.

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut

  6. #6

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    I'll keep you in mind Troy.

  7. #7

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    Reputible seller on eBay: LINK

    Great guy. Got me & SCompRacer the parts needed to fix my Dad's AR 4xa's & 2 ax's.

    Here is the replacement pot: LINK

    He sells all kind of repair / replacement stuff.

    Congrats on the score!
    Better to have and not need than to need and not have!

  8. #8

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    Nice grab! Just goes to show, always ask...

    Much depends on condition of the parts. Some of the controls can be salvaged, but they must be disassembled and brass wire brushed to clean the corrosion off the wound wire and contacts. If the corrosion is too severe, they must be replaced.

    Victor, do you have some pics of the rebuild, or can you extract some out of that musical slide show I made for your dad?
    Last edited by SCompRacer; 04-10-2007 at 07:25 AM.
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  9. #9

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    I've heard some say they were he best AR made. since I love my 9's so much, I would love to at least get an ear on a pair of these, nice snag
    Theater - Polk LSi15, LSiC, LSi9 speaks, DIY Sub (142.5L box, SVS plus driver, 500 Watt plate amp)...Outlaw 990 pre/pro, Carver TFM45, 2 X Outlaw M200 . Rotel RB980 . PS3, Monster 3600 power center

    2 Channel -
    Anthem Pre 2l, Jolida JD100 CD player, CAL Sigma DAC, Carver m4.0, Polk LSi9 w external modified Crossovers (thanks Trey!)

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    Halo & SCompRacer thanks for the tips. I think I will try to repair the pots first and if they are bad replace them.

    I think the foam to the woffer is original and in great shape. Not sure how that is possible for the age of these speakers, but the grills were never taken off.

  11. #11

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    In terms of AR, I'd say the AR9's are hands down the best. Something groovy cool about the AR-3a though.

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut

  12. #12

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    Before:
    Better to have and not need than to need and not have!

  13. #13

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    After SCompRacer's handiwork:

    Better to have and not need than to need and not have!

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    That's some nice work man. That thing is ultra clean!
    Quote Originally Posted by troyd
    Who cares if mainstream pop is released in SACD? In most cases, that amounts to polishing a turd.
    Quote Originally Posted by dorokusai
    Have you ever felt the legs of a female equestrian on your head?

  15. #15

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    WOW, that's amazing that you can take apart the pots and repair them.

    Nice work. How much time did it take? A brass wire brush is all you used?

  16. #16

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    Thanks. I used Caig DeoxIT, a brass bristle wire brush and a hard pencil eraser to help polish the terminals. The brass is kinder than a steel wire brush and was only used where necessary.

    IIRC one pair of Victor's AR's had the pots removed and a pair of binding posts were installed in the holes. He had to come up with some pots to put back in and those were easy to clean out on the bench. There is a wire clip that holds the pot together. You can see part of it under the pot in one of the pictures. On the other pair of his AR's, the pots were connected and I disassembled and cleaned them inside the speaker working through the woofer mounting hole. That was a pain, but it was easier than cutting wires and/or desoldering and resoldering them back in. They took about an hour per speaker. I transferred the insulation that was inside the speaker into a large garbage bag until I was ready to reassemble them.

    We used a couple of beads of 3/16" rope caulk weatherstrip to reseal the woofers in place. There were some screw heads that had to be whacked off on the pair missing the pots as the T Nut was spinning in the wood. Ace Hardware had some larger T-Nuts (AKA Blind Nuts) that worked perfectly since some of the wood was missing around the smaller T Nuts that had spun.


    Classic Speaker Pages for AR's.
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    Last edited by SCompRacer; 04-10-2007 at 12:58 PM. Reason: linkage to Classic Speaker Pages
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  17. #17

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    SCompRacer

    Thanks for the detailed information and the Ar link.

    The woffer I have looks different in the center. I'll take some photos.

  18. #18

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    Finally got some photos of the 40 year old speakers.

    Notice that the tweeter was hit.
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  19. #19

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    That's not even a bad looking rheostat by the usual standards for these ol' guys...

    If, perchance, you'd like to see an U-G-L-Y (but good sounding) AR-3 (not 3a), here is the nastier of my pair. I cannot complain, as these were freebies (dump find).


    all the best,
    mrh

  20. #20

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    That is a great dump find. You you use them mhardy?

  21. #21

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    Sometimes... They are in the basement with a Magnavox console (PP EL84 stereo power amp) -- an all dump-find system! :-)

    Other "New England School of Speaker Design" dump finds (most in far better condition than the AR-3 shown above) include pairs of: AR-2ax, KLH 6, AR-14 (actually, I have three, from two different eras), Allison One.

    I love the dump.

    all the best,
    mrh

  22. #22

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    Where is this dump?

  23. #23

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    one of many small Northern New England towns :-)

    Massachusetts, NW of Boston. Close to two major regional highways.
    That's all I can say. They are watching...

    Seriously, in terms of dump-diving, "Chance favors the prepared mind"

    The recycling part of our dump ('transfer station') is entirely volunteer-staffed. A two-hour shift sorting and bagging plastic for recycling gives the volunteer a nice opportunity to peruse the "yankee swap" pile pretty much ad lib. It's a win-win!
    all the best,
    mrh

  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhardy6647 View Post

    That's not even a bad looking rheostat by the usual standards for these ol' guys...
    I hear ya. The ones I cleaned in the speakers were worse. They had minor to severe pitting but worked OK after cleaning.

    Nice speakers bz. Great finds mhardy. They are not pretty with the grills off, but they sure sound good.
    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

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  25. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhardy6647 View Post
    one of many small Northern New England towns :-)

    Massachusetts, NW of Boston. Close to two major regional highways.
    That's all I can say. They are watching...

    !
    Rt 2 or Rt 3 or Rt 93 or Rt 95

    Just busting..

    I lived in Carlisle MA for 14 years and they had a transfer station with a small building. Many times I brought back home more than I was getting rid of. That town was very rich. The first Saturday after X mass was the jackpot with stereo equipment computors and bicycles every where. I wanted to work there for free. I miss that swap shack.

  26. #26

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    not too far from Carlisle...
    all the best,
    mrh

  27. #27

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    So I'm getting warm?

  28. #28

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    link to my original thread :)
    Better to have and not need than to need and not have!

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    That was a good move cleaning the existing parts and not bypassing them or replacing with something from today. The whole sonic character of the speaker would be changed. In 1994 I had the good fortune to meet a guy who arguably has the finest collection of original AR speakers/electronics in the country. He showed me how to clean up the stuff on the AR-5's I had around at the time.

    The AR-3a is a fantastic speaker, absolutely legendary. But it does not hold its own against either AR-9 or AR-LST, which were both no holds barred attempts at building the finest loudspeaker, by one helluva company.

  30. #30

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    and not bypassing them
    One pair of Victor's had the pots removed.
    Attached Images  
    Make yourself necessary to someone. Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Salk SoundScape 8's
    Krell KSL Class A Pre w/ KSL Phono
    Krell Class A KSA-250
    Harmonic Technology Pro 9+
    Squeezebox Touch / Welborne Labs PS / I2S Out Mod
    Denon 3910 w/I2S/DSD Out
    Twisted Pear Buffalo III Dual Mono ESS Sabre32 DAC
    Sennheiser HD650
    Heavy Plinth Lenco L75 Idler Drive
    AA MG-1 Linear Air Bearing Arm
    Dynavector 17D3
    Shunyata Hydra (Original)
    NHT B-12d subs
    GIK Acoustic Treatments


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