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Busted! by the CW Police

Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by KD8ZM, Aug 11, 2017.

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  1. KD8ZM

    KD8ZM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have recently started working CW, after several weeks of intense morse code practice. Today I received an "Official Observer Advisory Notice" in the mail from a helpful OM, with the "chirp" and "key clicks" boxes checked. He heard me working another station.
    Running an Icom 7200 100 watts, 40 meters, straight key. 600 foot loop antenna through MFJ-939i tuner. Nothing fancy or exotic.
    I tried some searches but while I found a lot of geeky answers, I found no practical advice on what I should do about this - or even any potential causes that seemed to apply in my case.
    I am still doing CW qsos, and maybe I am also just chirping and clicking away - though no one has said so. I did turn the power down to 60 watts just in case I was overdriving something, like an electric guitar through a cheap amp lol.
    Any advice?
    Brady kd8zm
     
  2. KP4SX

    KP4SX XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    There's no typical reason why a 7200 should be chirping. Is your incoming AC voltage to the PS/rig in a reasonable range? My old IC730 gets really nasty with low line voltage below 105 which happens here on occasion.
     
    KD8ZM likes this.
  3. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'd be more than happy to listen for ya and do some on air checks if you would like to set something up.

    Let's verify that there's really a problem first.
     
    KD8ZM likes this.
  4. W7UUU

    W7UUU QRZ Lifetime Member #133 Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Ditto - same here

    Dave
    W7UUU
     
    KD8ZM likes this.
  5. WA7PRC

    WA7PRC Ham Member QRZ Page

    The first thing to check is to determine if it is actually chirping. A separate receiver does that. A remote receiver could do that, too.

    Assuming it is chirping, check the PS voltage AT the rig under load. You want to check the voltage as close to the inside of the rig as possible, to include any wire and connectors. If the voltage drops during key-down, that could be the reason for chirp.
     
    KD8ZM likes this.
  6. N8AFT

    N8AFT Subscriber QRZ Page

    We have some Very enthusiastic OO's out there.
    I have three OO Greeting Cards concerning how awful it is for me to use a classic rig with xtals because of slight chirp.
    Yes, by all means a second opinion is in order. Doubtful it's that bad. Don't let it get you down OM...
     
    KE4OH and KD8ZM like this.
  7. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Chirping is for the birds.

    I had a disease...chirpies...it's Canarial.

    But, it's tweetable.
     
    KI5WW and KD8ZM like this.
  8. KD8ZM

    KD8ZM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Hey guys, many thanks for the helpful replies. My line voltage is good according to my volt meter, in the high 13's.
    It sounds like chirping and clicking may be to some extent in the ear of the beholder. I will record myself over the air with my little youkits hb-1b which I just received, and listen for myself. That's a good idea, thank you.
    I will also operate at reduced power, maybe 50 watts for a while. I've heard some people suggest that's a good idea anyway on CW, and anything I can do to encourage only strong signals (those who can hear a 50-watt CQ) is probably good at this point, as faint CW is hard for me to decipher at my newbie level of CW proficiency.
    Guess I'll just keep clicking and chirping my way down the CW highway and hope not to get pulled over again! LOL
    73 - thanks again folks.
     
  9. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page

    Try to get the input signal as low as possible, perhaps by shorting the antenna input.

    If the signal is too strong and overloading the receiver you may hear things (such as clicks) that aren't really there!

    My offer stands... if you want to meet on 40 meters some evening, just say the word.
     
    KD8ZM and WB5YUZ like this.
  10. NN4RH

    NN4RH Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    There may be some OOs that are wound a little too tight.

    It'd have to be pretty egregious to rise to the level of an FCC enforcement action. Has the FCC EVER cited anyone for chirp? I doubt it.

    So it's merely a technical issue. Do some due diligence to make sure it's not bad then forget it and move on.

    I'd be interesting to see an oscilloscope trace of the alleged chirp.
     
    KD8ZM likes this.

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