Capacitors and the first radio equipment

The Ducati brothers launched their first manufacturing and commercial activity in the laboratory in 1926, developing a sophisticated electric capacitor, the size of a two Euro coin. That capacitor, which was sold in an elegant box complete with yellow silk thread, was called “Manens”, a word of Latin origin indicating endurance or strength.

Inadvertently, that small capacitor became the DNA from which almost a century of Ducati history would stem. Hugely successful, it was soon followed by increasingly sophisticated and compact models of mica electrolytic capacitor. Radio was one of the world’s most rapidly developing modern technologies at that time, and in Italy too. The speed with which the radio could broadcast news literally revolutionized the lives of Italians between the late 20s and early 30s. Barely three years on from the company’s foundation, the Ducati brothers decided to transfer production of its capacitors and early radio equipment inside the walls of the Ducati family villa, located at Viale Guidotti 51 in Bologna. “Villa Lydia” was the first truly large-scale Ducati factory, and from 1929 to 1936, the year in which Ducati found its permanent home in Borgo Panigale, production was incessant and continued to grow.

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