Not the answer I was looking for

Awhile back when I assembled the Amateur Radio Kit Roundup,  I listed Heathkit as a potential source, and even answered a question in the comments about their rumored return to Amateur Radio stating that I would contact someone about it.  I sent an email off asking how they were doing in this regard.  Unfortunately I never received an answer.  Here is some sad news at the ARRL explaining why (courtesy of a mention at this morning).  I was not a ham when Heathkit was in its heyday, but knew plenty of people who were, and like most of you, I was impatiently awaiting news of their return to the hobby.  Hopefully this is not a permanent end, but only a temporary setback.

Neil Goldstein, W2NDG, is a regular contributor to and writes from New York, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

5 Responses to “Not the answer I was looking for”

  • Matt W1MST:

    I was saddened to read this — but not surprised.

    I think your recent post on the wide variety of kits available speaks volumes, though. Amateur radio kitbuilding is far from being on its way out.

  • Keith Hamlin WD9GHS:

    I had an HW101 after building several smaller kits, and it lasted years, and could still be operating, as I sold it years back at a Hamvention. I also built several other Heath kits, and loved them! I miss them, and the real Radio Shack of old!

  • I did have some heath equipment over the years. As a kid, my dad was encouraging me to get my license. Somehow he felt that if the equipment was sitting there, unused, I would be more motivated. He bought be a DX-60B, and matching VFO, as well as a Mosely CM1 receiver from a ham friend of his. I built a transistor AM-radio kit at some point, but cannot remember which one, and I also had Heath’s version of the spring-terminal solderless experimenters kits (like the RS Science Fair kits).

    Keith, we ALL miss them, and also what RS once was (as well as Lafayette, and Allied-Knight Kit), but as Matt said, there are some great modern alternatives out there now. Look at the companies in the Roundup, and some definitely stand out. Elecraft, HendricksQRP, TenTec, QRPme, YouKits, all come recommended. I was thinking that what was left of Heath would simply work out a branding deal with one of these small kit firms. Maybe that still might happen.


  • N7KRE:

    Would be a limited customer base, as with all the China crap coming in
    hard to compete. Also noticed that they are selling 2mt/440 hi’s and
    advertising that you do not need a license!!!look for interference to
    public service and emergency com, reports against amateur radio, going
    to be a tough nut to crack.

  • Mike VE3WDM:

    I never had any of their kits but I did have a heathkit store close to my home. I can remember as a kid going over to the store and gazing at the assembled radio kits. That began my dreams of getting into ham radio!

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