I’ve been seeing on the googles and the twitters, that HeathKit is going to start selling kits again, but not for Ham Radio. They are going to start selling “Do It Yourself Kits” for around the house. While this is great, It’s kind of useless for me.
The first two kits they are offering is a garage parking assistant and a wireless swimming pool monitor. I’m sure these will be great kits and lots of fun to build for many people out there, but not for me. You see, I live in an apartment. Curses, foiled again! But in seriousness, with Heathkit’s come back, it kind of makes me wonder why now? I’m guessing the economy is not what it used to be and money is getting a little tighter. So they are just firing up an old revenue stream that has been dormant a long time and getting back to what worked?
I have never built from a kit, but I have owned kit made electronics before, buying them after the person who made them, then got tired of them. I used to own a nice Heathkit AM/SSB HF transceiver back in the early days of my license. I think it was around the time I upgraded to General Class. While they haven’t started offering anything Ham Radio related yet, they are looking for suggestions for new projects. A couple that come to mind for me would be, an APRS kit and maybe a small CW or SSB transceiver for backpacking or mobile use. That would have to be pretty rugged though, so not sure how that would play out.
But with Radio Shack also getting back into the DIY arena too, things are starting to come full circle and we’ll have a new generation of kids able to build some pretty cool things on the weekends, keeping them off the interwebs thingy and the facebook doo-dads. Maybe even a return to the catalogs we would get every now and again, and would eagerly await in the mail, like I used to wait for the Sears and Montgomery Wards catalogs for Christmas to see all the toys. But being the 21st century, the catalogs would be in PDF format, and delivered by email.