My station sits on a homebrew desk I built about 10 years ago. The centerpiece of the operating position are my two HF radios: Ten-Tec Omni VI Plus and Omni VI. During amateur radio contests, the Omni VI+ is "Radio1," while the Omni VI is "Radio2". Both are controlled by WriteLog contest software during contests. When operating outside of contests, I log QSO's with my own homebrew Visual Basic logging software. When operating the digital modes, I use MixW and MMTTY software.
The paddeles are Vibroplex iambics usually connected to a CMOS Superkeyer II keyer for contest and general operating.
On the under-the-desktop keyboard tray and shelf, from left to right, is the two-radio control box, the computer keyboard and the Ten-Tec Model 301, Omni VI's remote VFO knob. I modified the basic design to include a DPDT switch to switch control between the two radios. It works great and I think a lot of fatigue is avoided by not having to reach up to the radios quite so much.
Up on the shelf above the radios are the Daiwa wattmeters, a homebrew 2-radio control box, and an old AEA tuner (now sitting unused in the garage).
On the very top shelf sit the two Ten-Tec power supplies, a couple of speakers, and some test equipment.
The Heart of the Station
The four major pieces of equipment that comprise the 'normal' basic station: Omni VI Plus, Vibroplex Iambic Paddles (Ten-Tec Commemorative), Daiwa SWR/Wattmeter and CMOS Superkeyer II. They have all played extremely well through the years.
The Antenna System
I live on 64'x120' residential lot. The 70' Rohn 25G tower is located at the center of the back of the house. The antenna's consist of a Force 12 C3E at 70', a Cushcraft A3 fixed northwest at 40', a 40m inverted Vee, an 80m 1/4-wave, half-sloper, and a weird 160m inverted-L.
During contests, the C3E covers S. America, Carib., the East Coast, and Europe; the A3 covers the West Coast, northern Asia and some of the Pacific. I spin the top beam around to the west or southwest to nail a mult if the A3 doesn't cut it. But, usually, the A3 comes through.
In domestic contests, the two beams tee'd together provide coverage to both coasts helping me hold the frequency during the few times I can run stations. I operate QRP (5 watts or less) during contests. Even in the power-crazed NA Sprint, operating QRP is fun and a halfway decent score can still be had running low power.
I built a 2 radio control box to take care of the switching of radio contro, CW keying, PTT, Mic, antennas, bandpass filters, and computer. It's pretty seamless operation during contests when frequent band changing and radio changing are the norm.
The Daiwa wattmeter has also been a reliable and accurate performer. Since I operate QRP in contests, having the assurance I'm indeed at 5 or less watts is important. I have checked it against a Bird wattmeter a couple of times a year over the past ten years and it's been right on the money! I won it at the Texas DX Society Annual Banquet one year....never won anything since. Darn! I recently acquired a Daiwa CN-101L wattmeter to monitor power output from the Omni VI (Radio2) transceiver. Like it's bigger, older brother, it works like a charm and is accurate.