ALDA 103/105 info-history from someone who was there

Discussion in '"Boat Anchor" & Classic Equipment' started by JRD, Apr 1, 2012.

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  1. JRD

    JRD QRZ Member

    I saw some posts on here from a couple years back about Alda. ALDA, as it actually was called, was a subsidiary of a company in Oceanside, CA called ALD Industries. ALD was a cut and strip business that made subassemblies for lots of So Cal defense and toy manufacturers, as well as some pre-computer people. My father, Anthony L Duchi, (ALD himself) decided in 1977 that he was going to go into the ham business because we were getting ready to go cruising on our sailboat and he wanted a compact, multiband ham radio to take with us. He had a guy who had some design affiliation with Kachina, I believe, put together a proto design for him. I remember going to his house in Sedona. But it was a straight ALDA unit. It was not affiliated with Swan, Atlas, or Cubic, although it seems to me my dad hired away some techs from Swan. The company was located at 215 Via El Centro in the Oceanside industrial park. It shared the facility with all the other ALD manufacturing. I personally used to put together kit packages for sale to DIY people. I was 11 at the time. The 105 came out shortly thereafter, it had 5 and 10 meter bands as well in the same chassis. The name ALDA stood for ALD Amateur. In 1979 Kenwood came out with a smaller radio that pretty much put ALDA out of business. But I find it interesting that the radios are still in use today.
  2. W9GB

    W9GB Ham Member QRZ Page

    ZS1J has an ALDA 103 that he is restoring in South Africa.
  3. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I remember seeing the Alda-103 ads in the back of Ham Radio Magazine.
    I never owned one but wanted one.
  4. KB4QAA

    KB4QAA XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Wow, another tidbit of history explained! They are an attractive radio, for sure.

    Thanks, b.

    Last edited: Apr 2, 2012
  5. ZS1J

    ZS1J Ham Member QRZ Page

    I posted a reply earlier but the system locked up and I see it did not get added.

    The only rig that i now own and operate is an Alda 103. I had many rigs a few years ago including a KWM-2 the "S line" twins, a Swan Astro and an FT-200 modified for 6146s but got rid of everything when restricted hams were given full HF use when I had to work hard for my licence including learning Morse and operating only cw for the first year of my hobby. Fortunately I had lent on old ham pal the Alda when his old FT101 blew the mains transformer. When he went silent key his widow contacted me to tell me that he had made provision for me to get the Alda back. So at least I am on 40 from suburbia. Not like when I had the farm where I ran 1 kW out, huge lattice tower and 4 element beam.

    Getting back to the Alda. Great lil radio.

    73 Roger ZS1J
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