This document was updated on Monday 29 July 2019.
Updated several links on this page. More to come.
Here are Heath people with Web pages. They either work (or once
worked) at Heath Company or are such hard-core Heath fans that they're
considered a part of the family. I'll try to provide a short
description for each.
If you know of any Heath people with Web pages who aren't included
here, please email me.
is a Former Boeing Engineer who has some nice things things to say
about Heath Company. Also, he founded a company called FBE Research
which designed, manufactured, and sold products that enhanced the
Heathkit computer product line (IMHO).
Robert Capon, W3DX, likes to build kits and has
written a great Web page devoted to Heath products. It
has photos of Heathkits, useful kitbuilding information, and
links to related sites not covered in my Web pages.
(Note: He has either moved or closed his original web page at AOL.
Until I get up-to-date information, I've linked to his web page
stored on the Internet Archive. --ww)
- Glen Chenier was an electronics
technician at the Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada store. It was one of the Heath
"mini" stores in that it had a total staff of three people; besides Glen, there
was the store manager and one person who worked both sales and service. In
contrast to full-sized stores—which usually had a large enough staff that
the technicians there could specialize—Glen had to be an "Everything
Tech" and worked on the entire product line. He described the experience as
"fun, interesting, and educational." I would have also added
"sometimes challenging." The Heath product line covered a wide
range of technologies—ranging from Amateur Radio through test
equipment—and you had to keep up with a lot of technical literature
to be able to repair them all. Glen not only kept up with it, but stayed
ahead of it; he submitted (and got published) a tremendous number of TEBs
covering many product lines.
(Technical Exchange Bulletings–an in-house publication used to keep
factory and field techs up-to-date).
His submissions included both new troubleshooting techniques and
circuit modifications that improved the overall quality of the product.
While technicians often submitted new troubleshooting procedures, it was
rare for circuit modifications to get published in a TEB as they had
to be approved by Heath Engineering. Glen's were approved more often than
At some time after Heath/ZDS closed the store program, Glen moved to
Allen, Texas, USA, near Dallas. Among other things, he occupies his time with
and selling modification kits for Z-scale model railroads
- Frank Clark
was a ZDS employee, but took a strong interest in the
Blossomland Heath User's
Group. Among other things, Frank has lectured at club
meetings, conducted software training seminars,
and has written software for the BLHUG BBS.
Robert L. Doerr not only owns at least one of
each of the Hero Robots models ever manufactured, but also
provides extensive information on them—along with parts and
- Bob Furtaw was the Manager of Heath Service Publications and Training when I was hired as a Technician Trainee at Heath Store #45 in December 1973. Among other things, he started the in-house Heath Service Manuals (Blue Books) and the corresponding Service Qualification Exams. Later, he took over as Manager of Heath User's Group, which provided information for Heath microcomputers and related products. In 1978, he left Heath Company to work for Motorola, where he stayed until he retired in September of 2002.
- Magne V. Hansen worked as an electronics technician at the Heathkit Electronics Center in Fairlawn, New Jersey from 1968 to 1970. He specialized in audio equipment but, like most of us store techs, also worked on a wide variety of other kits. In 1970, he returned with his aging parents to his country of origin, Norway—which is where he now lives with his wife, children, and grandchildren.
(Note: His original web page no longer exists. Until I can get updated
informaton, I've linked to a copy of his page on the Internet
- Katharina Heyning
is the daughter of the late Bjorn
Heyning, a design engineer at Heath Company. Katy is a
professor at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and has
given me permission to publish Bjorn's
- Rich McCoy
is a friend who was also a fellow technical writer in the Service Publications and Training department. During his time there, he wrote Technical Exchange Bulletins, conducted service seminars, and wrote in-house Service Data Manuals. (We coauthored some, such as the H/Z-100 Blue Book--a weighty tome of about 1000 pages.) Later, he transferred to the product evaluation department where he worked for a number of years as a Test Engineer. After Heath Company got out of the kit business, Rich left to work in test engineering at a company in the western United States. Outside of work, one of Rich's hobbies is astronomy and celestial photography. His Web page at the above link showcases some of his spectacular photos, along with summaries of the equipment he used to take them.
- Howard Nurse
occasionally wrote for the
HUG magazine, Remark.
His articles included a radio-teletype interface called
RTTY89 and a genealogy program called ROOTS89--both
written for Heath 8-bit computers using HDOS and CP/M. He
discusses the history and growth of ROOTS89 at
He markets the latest version of ROOTS89 through the
company he's President of,
(Note: Long-time Heath fans may be aware that Howard Nurse
is the son of the late David Nurse, former President of Heath
Company. I guess being a company president runs in the family.
Anyway, I've looked over the COMMSOFT site, and they
seem to have the same mom-and-pop attitude Heath Company had in
the '70s and '80s. That is, personally concerned about their
Frank O'Neal has worked as an electronics
technician, technical consultant, service
supervisor, and as an engineer for product evaluation and
was transferred from the New Orleans, LA store to the Heath
factory in Michigan
at about the same time I moved to Michigan from Omaha (early 1979).
He worked as a Technical Consultant for the computer product
line, then later as a Firmware Engineer for our sibling company,
Zenith Data Systems. After that, he left and moved to Texas
to start his own consulting firm. Here's some interesting
information Steven sent me about his experience at Heath:
- Author of "Consultant's Corner" in Remark magazine.
This monthly column provided answers to customer's questions
about Heath computer products.
- Developed several HUG software packages under the pseudonym
- Developed the softare used to manufacture all the
diskette software products.
- Owns the first H8 computer (serial number 1) that he purchased
from Neil Beneditz, the original designer of the H8.
- Wrote the code for the PAM-37 monitor ROM that was part of the
H-8-37 Z80 upgrade for the H8. (If you dump the ROM, you can find
his name embedded in it.)
- Tried to convince the head of the computing department that
operating systems should be sold as a separate product and
developed for other hardware platforms. His idea was dismissed
because "operating systems only exist to sell hardware."
(This was before Microsoft got into the picture. Who knows what
would have happened if they'd given it a try.)
- Don Peterson worked as a Service Technician and later as a Design Engineer at Heath Company in the mid '70s. Nowadays, he provides support for various Heath products on his Heathkit Page.
was transferred from the Heath store in Cincinnati, Ohio, to
the Heath store in Omaha, Nebraska, which he managed for about
two years (starting 1978). I'd worked for him for about a year,
then transferred to Michigan in early 1979. We've been friends
for over 20 years now and still keep in touch.
Here's a picture of us from those days.
Pat Swayne was hired
as a programmer for National HUG in the late '70s or early '80s.
He wrote many educational articles for REMark magazine and was
the photographer for a number of their covers. In addition, of
course, he wrote a huge number of useful programs for the HUG
Library. They were small and fast because he wrote most of them
in assembly language. Not may programmers willingly do that
- Steve Whitney worked as a Heath computer service technician in the El Cerrito, California Heathkit store near Berkeley in the mid '80s. He built his H89 computer in 1981 (which he still has), an H100 in 1983, and was active on Compuserve's HUGSIG group. Though his Web page is mostly devoted to general-purpose programming (with source code), he also provides interesting programs for the H89 and H100 at
http://25yearsofprogramming.com/vintagehub.htm. (If you're an H100 graphics programmer, check out his DeSmet C library while there.)
(Note: His original web page no longer exists. Until I can get updated informaton, I've linked to a copy of his page on the Internet Archive. --ww)
Bill Wilkinson: I originally worked as an
electronics technician at the Heathkit store in Omaha, Nebraska.
Later, I was transferred to Michigan where I wrote in-house
service manuals, researched Technical Exchange Bulletins submitted by
Heath factory- and field-service technicians, and conducted service seminars.
Gary Wood, K0IMJ
likes to collect Heath Ham radios--espcially AT-1 transmitters
(a model that was before my time). His Web page has photos of
just about every major Ham product Heath has manufactured.
Go to the Heath Company page.
Copyright © 1996—2000, 2001—2008, William Albert Wilkinson. All rights reserved.