Begali Contour CW Keyer
I have always enjoyed CW and have spent years in search of the perfect keyer. When I was licensed as a young kid, my father (also a ham) convinced me that using an electronic keyer was verboten as a novice, so I pounded away on a traditional hand key.
Ever since I upgraded to general and first used an electronic keyer to QSO, I've searched for the perfect key. I may not have found it, but Begali makes a key as close to nirvana as anything I've ever tried!
I was at Dayton this past week and another fellow in our group asked me if I had tried "the keyers."
"Well, I tried these capacitance controlled thingies that you simply touch to key."
"No," he replied, "THE keyers!"
"Well, I guess not!"
He told me where they were and the next day with the help of my handy-talkie to ask him where "they" were, I finally found 'em!!
Begali keys are custom made by Pietro Begali, I2RTF. These are elegant keys with outstanding craftsmanship that remind me of genuine Balabushka pool cues. You don't just play billiards with a Balabushka, and you don't just send CW with a Begali. You can feel the difference the moment you touch one of the beauts! I came home with Contour key S/N 018 and she's beautiful! (Mine has the palladium base).
Rather than using spring-loaded arms, these keys utilize magnets to generate a feel unlike any other key I've ever used. At first, the paddles on the key seemed a bit small, but then I realized that the magnets allowed a most precise feel and the touch required to generate high-speed CW was ever-so-slight. Stroking the key felt like changing from the pounding of a sledge-hammer of my old key to the crisp feel of a precision brain surgeon. It was truly incredible!
One thing I've hated with many keyers is chasing them around the desktop. Not the Begali! These keys are heavy weights and DON'T MOVE! Set the key where you want it and it STAYS PUT!! That's part the weight of the key, but also part of the slight delicate touch required to operate the key.
There are several models to satisfy any desire. You won't go wrong with one of these.
This is what she looks like (to see an example of the palladium base on a different key, click here!):
Serious CW ops need one of these! Trust me!
Last edited by W4DFW; 05-23-2009 at 05:15 AM.
A thing of beauty
I told Pietro at Dayton that one can SEND with anything, but that his products were beautiful. He was grateful, but really, I think he means for them to be to keyers as Ferrari's are to automobiles, you know?
I didn't buy one. I can't justify it on beauty alone and I don't need another paddle just now. But if my shack ever looks good enough to show one off...
The man has some amazing stuff, I think I'll be picking up the Intrepid to go along with the Camel Back I already have.
Begali doesn't manufacture keys so much as functional works of art.
Worth every dime if you can afford it.
How is that camelback working out for you?
I love it!
Originally Posted by N6NQZ
Things so heavy that it never moves unless I make it move to some other spot I want it in and the workmanship is insanely good. No side to side movement and the bearings are smooth as silk.
Wish I'd had it when I was learning instead of that janky J-38.
You know they are pretty cheap, you couldn't go wrong just picking one up to try out.
Thanks for the reply and info. I will check it out.
I have a Begali simplex and feel the same way about the precision of its operation. For over a year I have been lucky enough to own a serious iambiac. "Like Butta"!
I guess beauty is relative.
Originally Posted by KV1M
73 de KB3LAZ
In lieu of achievement we have mediocrity.
I have the MagPro....great stuff!!!
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
― Winston Churchill
Don't knock it until you've tried it!
Originally Posted by KB3LAZ
A work of art it is indeed.