Copy Speed Going Nowhere...

Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by KN3O, Jan 26, 2016.

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  1. W4KJG

    W4KJG Subscriber QRZ Page

    As many probably know, it is called "immersion" when related to languages.

    Immersion works. Having been somewhat conversant in a few languages, it doesn't take me too long to be able to at least order dinner when travelling overseas.

    Except maybe for a few hard core purists, I believe that most CW operators are extremely sympathetic and helpful to those learning or re-learning Morse. Most of us want a lot more CW operators for a lot of reasons. IMHO immersion is the quickest way to become proficient.

    I personally slow down my speed to whatever is being transmitted, mostly by changing the spacing between characters and words, as appropriate. I recently bought an old ultramatic keyer to make it easier to do this.

    Since most of us on QRZ are in the US, Canada, and the UK, we regularly encounter non-English speaking immigrants. I certainly try not to ever embarrass those trying to help me because English isn't their native language.

    This past summer, three hams and spouses (two couples being US, and one couple being Candian) met in the town of
    Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, in Wales, UK, where English is the predominant language.


    Like we should be with those learning CW, the locals in that small town(with a big name) were very happy to help us learn the pronunciation of their home town.
    W5BIB likes this.
  2. K6FNI

    K6FNI XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Sounds to me like you're doing A-OK.

    Robert, K6FNI
  3. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Good going.

    I can copy 50-55 wpm and still do that (wait to hear a station complete a QSO with someone else to be sure I have his call, before calling him myself). That way I know for certain I have the call (and usually the rest of the exchange also!) before I even hit the key. Makes each QSO pretty "solid" and only takes an extra few seconds.
  4. K8PG

    K8PG QRZ Lifetime Member #333 Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    KEEP The Good work up.....
    its going nicely
  5. W3TTT

    W3TTT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Question: What do you have to communicate on the ham bands, that is so important that you MUST go at 10 wpm and faster?

    I will answer this rhetorical question. The answer is "Nothing". There is really no reason to send or receive code at fast speed, whether at 10, 20, 30 or faster. We are just enjoying our hobby, ham radio. I would be very happy to have a nice long qso with you anytime. Look for me on 3526 - 3555 kHz. Just remember the TTT in my call. Both our calls are in the "3" third call district, so we shouldn't be so far apart.

    At five words per minute, that would be 300 words per hour. that is a fine QSO. If you want to tell me something important, I give you my phone number. Otherwise, just have fun.

    BTW I have the same issue with code speed as you do. Just I have been at it a bit longer. Your speed should come up eventually, especially if you follow the (sometimes conflicting) advice above.

    I take exception to those hams who . . . well you know who they are. Nuff, said. No need to start a flame war over cw speed. Basically, I am for it, when and if I ever get there.

    You can lookup my blog post on eHam regarding that. Seems that doctors and scientists examined this question in a scientific manner during WWII. They found that only about 50% of trainees could learn high speed code. The rest of us have a learning disability which makes it very difficult. Of course, on eHam, the big mouths all opined and said that "I studied and practiced hard and look at me now - I - me - I - me - I - me...". Of course these stories and anecdotes about individuals is no way scientific.

    Anyway - if you hear me on 80, give a call!
    Joe W3TTT

  6. AH6OY

    AH6OY Ham Member QRZ Page

    First off don't think by dots and dashes. think when listening for the quick sequencing of the dots and dashes but not thinking of individual dots and dashs. Your copy speed is instantly ruined thinking of dot and dash orders. Just listen to the complete sequence.

    Try this program findable in the downloads section of the site.
    Deconfigure lids, qsb etc and set a speed with around 5 or 10 minute run. I prefer 10 minutes. Set it for single calls at first. I wouldn't try chasing with bandwidth and such. The program imitates N1MM. Put the call in and hit enter. Use the function keys that are just like N1MM. If you hit enter on the serial number portion it logs just like N1MM. This program exercises you so when you know you have the speed you can increase it.

    Like I said DO NOT listen for dots and dashes. Only the complete sequence of letters and numbers. Then while progressing you'll start to realize copying from behind is taking effect.

    Oh yah worst problem I have is I can't write as fast as people send.
  7. KD2RON

    KD2RON Ham Member QRZ Page

    I don't believe you mentioned your age, but I have been learning code at 72 for the last year and have kind of made a study of the process. Here are some opservations I have made about my own struggle. The speed you copy in your own head is much slower than the hand copy speed. It is dificult to both copy written and in your head. To copy written you have to learn to write the letter down almost by reflex, no time to think letter is "a" and then write down the letter. In trying to copy in my head I have found short words are easy but after 5 or 6 letters the string of letters disappears from my mind. I have found it helps me to think of the sound of the sylabels (short group of letters, sorry about the spelling). I actully enjoy listening to code and I think the whole process is an interesting adventure. Remember many have learned code at an earlier age and with different aptitutes.
    We arent all alike and I will never get past slow, but if you think about the fact we are not sending vital news but just having fun, what the heck. Thanks
  8. VK3KTT

    VK3KTT XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    14 month of learning i still visit most days 15-30mins my favorite is the call sign trainer bottom speed is 15 wm top speed is 28 wpm its fun and challenging it will boost your speed and make you learn to read the letter on instict so you dont assume anything that was one of the tips from read and interview from one of the great cw dxpeditioner r9usu dima . it take time but you realy need to get your speed upand you need to push your self.
    good luck
  9. M0LEP

    M0LEP Ham Member QRZ Page

    I figure that with the callsign and word trainers, if you often get all the way up without errors then it's time to raise the starting speed a bit...
  10. M6GYU

    M6GYU Ham Member QRZ Page

    I was lucky and learned CW in the RN. No fancy methods.
    Day one and two we were given a bunch of flash cards each (letter one side / CW the other) and told to memorise them. We did this in pairs over a couple of evenings.

    From then on it was listening to CW. First at probably 5wpm for 30 or 40 minutes a day Always writing everything down (plain language and code). Every few days or so we went up a word or two per minute. Just as you felt you were getting comfortable with one speed the instructor/s cranked the speed up a bit, until 20WPM was reached.

    I can't remember any fancy advice, like don't do this or think of words/letters instead of dots and dashes and we didn't do much sending until we'd got our reading speed up to around 12-15wpm I think.

    A couple of years at sea and my speed had naturally gone up as it was being used a lot.

    A couple of years later I took part in a competition at 36wpm and the method we used to read at this speed was the same. Practice, practice and when you get comfortable crank the speed up a word or two per minute.

    I don't think there is any guaranteed 'fast' method of learning morse for the simple reason that if there was, every organisation which taught morse would have used it. I've met many military & radio operators from other european countries and plenty of merchant naval radio officers too. All of them learned the same way. Start slow, practice and soon as it starts to get easier at that speed push the speed up a word or two per minute and keep going.

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