Thanks for your thoughtful additions to the conversation.
I'm not the best person to delve into the details of ULR definitions, as I'm mostly in the SDR radio camp right now and just somewhat dabble in the ULR side of things. However, I've been with this Yahoo Group from the beginning so I've seen a lot of conversations and topics come and go over the years. I do have the benefit living in the same town as one of the group's co-founders-- Gary DeBock, the driving force behind the growing Ultralight Radio niche and the key proponent of FSL antennas and experimentation. I have certainly learned a lot about this side of the radio hobby simply by being in close contact with Gary!
I would agree that the "Unlimited" category has an allure to it. I like to think of crazy-big antennas feeding simple portable radios as a kind of Frankenstein experimentation; you'll never know what kind of "DXing monster" you'll create until you try it! It is also akin to the fringes of the drag race / hot rodding / muscle car fraternity. I'm sure we've all seen (at least in pictures) very small economy cars with humongous V8 engines stuffed under the hood, turning a meek grocery-getter into a wild beast of a car. Why would a hot rod enthusiast do this? Because he CAN! There's no practical reason... it's all about the fun factor, and in the end, a hobby is what you want to make of it.
A few years ago, moderator Kevin Schanilec made this statement about the ULR definitions, which I think was very good:
The definition of what constitutes an "Ultralight" went through significant deliberation and review, and the definitions are where we ended up. There is some flexibility built in, as you have observed, and when a new radio comes along, it is looked at on its own merits, a decision is made, and we move on. I can appreciate that not everyone would necessarily choose these criteria, and DXers are of course free to use whatever they like: however, in this corner of the hobby, this is what we've settled on. At the same time, we welcome participation from DXers of all types, and only ask that the choices made here are respected. In the end, the intent is to provide criteria for this niche of the hobby which, like QRP and crystal sets, involves placing voluntary constraints on the gear you use in order to provide extra challenge and interest.
So in the end, what really matters is how an individual chooses to enjoy the radio hobby, Troy, whether your radio choices fall within the definitions of the Ultralights Yahoo Group or not.