I’m not really one of those people who lives there life in the what if? mode but every once in a while even I start to think (usually around Christmas) about having an unlimited amount of money to spend on shortwave radio gear and exactly what setup I could put together if the financial constants that nearly all of us suffer magically evaporated.
Its easy to flick through your latest radio magazine or look at one of the big manufactures websites and pick out a bunch of radios but remember with no restrictions on money your dream shack doesn’t have to fit your current location. Ive known many shortwave, scanner and radio amateurs who will look at any new property with a firm eye on how useful it will be for their hobby either from space for the antennas or the overall height above see level.
Imagine having all the space you could ever need with excellent sight lines by living at least a thousand feet above sea level and what this new location would do to improve your reception no matter what flavor of radio you enjoy.
I sometimes think that not having a budget and being able to spend what ever you wanted on a hobby would be a little daunting. Unless you took a very methodical path through the process of buying new radio kit, the choices alone could tie you up in knots and you’d never actually get anything done.
Personally nothing short of a purpose built shack would do for me, more than big enough to have at least a good proportion of my collected radios powered up instead of all stacked up in storage. Run a nice fat internet connection into the shack and a super fast Linux cluster to handle any software defined radio data processing and it would be very close to the dream radio setup.
The shack would be sitting at the base of the biggest tower I could put up with the largest HF beam made be man along with every other antenna needed to give coverage of the radio spectrum from the ultra low right up into the microwave bands.
Of course this sort of arrangement would require plenty of ground and a serious lack of neighbors to mutter dark thoughts every time they have to stare out of their window directly into the 2 ton antenna rotator needing to keep the HF beam in place.
Making do but with an Eye on the Prize
Even though most of these ideas are the product of a radio enthusiast doing his best with the space and money available its good to dream now and then if only to spur me forward to greater things 🙂