Best Small CW Key for Travel

Discussion in 'On the Road' started by N4GKS, Jul 24, 2014.

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  1. N4GKS

    N4GKS Ham Member QRZ Page

    I know about the MFJ keyer and I understand you have to hold the base because it's light. Any others out there that you guys could recommend?
  2. W0JMP

    W0JMP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have this one and it is a good key. I use it portable with my K2.

    But it is light and must be held down in some way.

    Danny, W0JMP

    Live every sunspot cycle as if it is your last
  3. N4GKS

    N4GKS Ham Member QRZ Page

    $120.00? Wow.
  4. KA0HCP

    KA0HCP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Do you really want a "Keyer" or a set of "Iambic Paddles/Key"?
    The N3ZN ZN-QRP key is quite heavy, stable and very accurate.

    I gave up on the clever, but clumsy key that Elecraft sells for the KX-1. It was just hopelessly inaccurate and unreliable except at very low speeds, less than 10 wpm.
  5. W0JMP

    W0JMP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    You said "best" but did not specify "cheap"; but perhaps I should have guessed?

    But the other one posted make $120 look rather inexpensive don't you think?

    Dan, W0JMP
  6. KA0HCP

    KA0HCP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    No requirements were given e.g. cheap, small, light/heavy, high quality, rugged/back packable, etc.

    All things being equal, buy a Bencher BY-1 or 2 ($135) and have a full size iambic key that can be used inside or portable, and is the hobby standard that will last decades. Make a padded box to protect it. After fooling around with cheap, unreliable keys it is worth buying quality, IMO.
  7. W8ZNX

    W8ZNX Ham Member QRZ Page


    which kind of telegraph key do you want
    straight key
    single lever

    will guess you don't want a bug or cootie key

    a well made telegraph key is not going to be cheap
    a well made telegraph key will last a life time

    lots out there
    problem is what others like
    you may hate

    keys i love
    you may not like

    portable work
    straight key
    the Chinese BHC Birdy key Z 73
    it is a very nice smooth little key
    bought mine on Ebay from Hong Kong

    also like the American Morse Equipment KK 1 straight key

    see the American Morse Equipment web site
    they have a dozen or so keys

    also have their single lever Mini B key
    warning! the kit is a bear to put tougher
    there are some very VERY SMALL parts in the kit

    very much like the Schurr Keys but they are expensive
    same for the GHD telegraph keys

    Morse Express web site
    check the E ham reviews of telegraph keys

    are you a member of a club
    ask other members what they use
    see if you can go to their shacks and try out their keys
    the only way you will know if you like a key is by trying it

    if you buy a expensive high end key
    the odds that you like it
    will be greatly enhanced

    so many keys so little time

    yours truly
    dit dit
  8. N4GKS

    N4GKS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Nice looking.
  9. N4GKS

    N4GKS Ham Member QRZ Page

    I don't mind spending money, but for the money you're right about Bencher.
  10. N4GKS

    N4GKS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Looking at
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