About ready to give it a try ... here is my template for my first attempt

Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by KQ4MM, Sep 3, 2017.

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  1. M6GYU

    M6GYU Ham Member QRZ Page

    As others have said, its perfectly normal to be nervous. I worked on ships & shore stations (CW) for several years in my youth cannot even remember being nervous on the key. However......fast forward 45 years and I got my licence.... My 1st QSO...The key wobbled, I got confused. My CW went wobbly. So did my writing - I said the wrong things....... And did so for quite a few QSO's. But all the other operators were kind and patience.

    I too wrote out a template so I didn't forget things.

    Regarding procedure.... I'm not sure I see the point in sending......."BTU " as sending a "K" or a "KN" at the end of your transmission is asking for a reply anyway.
     
  2. KA2CZU

    KA2CZU XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    perhaps it was the way I learned code as a youngster, but throughout my life, I have trouble remembering anything if I don't write it down, even if I never refer to what I wrote again. All lectures were copied and for some reason that burned it in. Still to this day, my short term memory for any lecture is poor unless I'm taking notes.

    will make a push back to CW over the winter, been slack on radio time lately, but this thread is a good incentive!
     
  3. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I hear some (mostly newer ops) sending "BTU" but also consider it kind of a waste of time. I do usually send "HW?" before a callsign exchange. (HW? means "how copy?" and with variable conditions, sometimes the proper answer would be "NIL":p)
     
  4. KB1CKT

    KB1CKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    So, you're not the type to send "VRY BEST 73" either?

    I should dig out that article about "How to lose your Novice accent". Oh wait, I should just google it:
    http://www.kb6nu.com/your-novice-accent/

    *

    Steve, is there value in listening to code sent too fast, then listening to code at a more comfortable speed? I downloaded a few of the ARRL practice sessions years ago, and often try, at first, something fast, above my comfort; then crank down.
     
  5. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    IMO (based on working with a lot of students who started out not knowing any Morse code at all), practicing sending about the same amount of time as "listening" seems to help more than anything else.

    Listening to very slow code (5-10 wpm) is so incredibly boring that a lot of people seem to just lose focus and not get anywhere. Too much time for the mind to wander. 13-15 wpm seems a good "starting out" speed that provides less time for mind wandering but is slow enough to easily differentiate one character from another. And it's just about fast enough to start hearing what "words" sound like, as opposed to characters -- and this helps a lot.

    There are about 170,000 words in the English language (and this grows slightly each year), but in ham radio chat there's really only a couple of hundred. Once you recognize the sound of those couple of hundred, there's no limit to how fast you can copy, until everything is so close together that it sounds like a blur; that doesn't happen until you're well past 50 wpm.:)
     
  6. KB1CKT

    KB1CKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Well, the ARRL practice files seem to use a lot of words that i don't hear on air, and on air I hear a few that aren't in the files. Oh well.

    Yes, 15wpm can sound very slow, after copying 20+. Problem is, I still have to count dits and dahs when sending; and at 20wpm my two fingers both turn into thumbs. I keep my keyboard handy, and when I get flustered I switch to it.
     
  7. KB1CKT

    KB1CKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    KQ4MM, I thought I heard you on 7.116 (7.120? forgot now). I forgot to turn down the keyer; hope I didn't blow you off!
     
  8. KQ4MM

    KQ4MM XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    @ KB1CKT ... I was around there earlier, made 1 QSO but it was interrupted after 1st round completed as someone strong came in on top of it ... I made some CQ's, had one answer that I just couldn't pull out of the noise so I sent SRI NO CPY BAD QRN DE KQ4MM ( hope that was right thing to do)

    Now that I think about it someone may have responded way too fast for me ... no worries, maybe next time my friend ...

    Also had one response that was weird, call had no number in it or he used a O as in oscar ( I copied it a few times that way) instead of Zero ... never could make out the whole thing so after a QRZ or 2 quit trying. It was like KNO???
     
  9. KD8ZM

    KD8ZM Ham Member QRZ Page

    [QUOTE="WB2WIK, post: 4387116, member: 274916"There are about 170,000 words in the English language (and this grows slightly each year), but in ham radio chat there's really only a couple of hundred.[/QUOTE]

    Could someone point me to a list of them, or better yet, a text file? It would be useful to learn these 200 words really, really well, in terms of overall speed.
     
  10. KM4DYX

    KM4DYX XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Could someone point me to a list of them, or better yet, a text file? It would be useful to learn these 200 words really, really well, in terms of overall speed.[/QUOTE]
    Yeah, I'd like to see that list, too.

    73,
    Al
     
    KD8ZM likes this.

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