CW delay time?

Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by 2E0LPL, Mar 2, 2019.

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  1. K3XR

    K3XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    It needs to be adjustable because you may prefer a short delay to switch back to the receive side of the transceiver or you may prefer a longer time delay. In my case when sending CW I find listening to the receiver between characters or words to be very annoying so I set the delay usually at maximum. The other alternative is to use a T/R (transmit/receive) switch which I prefer in most cases.
     
  2. W7TCT

    W7TCT Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I am also just learning this.

    @K3XR states it well. Say you are tapping away sending a C - dah-dit-dah-dit. The 'hang time' will control how long it will take to allow for the rig to switch from transmit to receive. For example, the time between the dah and the dit, with zero hang time, you will hear the receiver. With a longer hang time, you will go from dah to dit to dah with the rig remaining quiet. A longer yet hang time will keep the rig quiet between words.

    Thus, set the milliseconds hang time to where you either want to hear what is being received or to wait until you are completely done sending and are ready to hear what others are sending.

    Me? I think I will likely start with a looong hangtime to decrease the background noise to help me concentrate. (Squirrel!)

    I am not there yet, still too (t)error prone at 90% or better but not good nor confident enough to jump into the deep end.
     
    K9ASE, W5BIB and K3XR like this.
  3. KE6EE

    KE6EE Ham Member QRZ Page

    There are several reasons for this adjustment.

    Some rigs use mechanical relays for switching in the transmit to receive process, and vice-versa, and for
    switching on-and-off the RF-generating transmit function(s).

    The relays can be annoyingly noisy if the rig is set for full-break-in. There is relay noise and there is noise
    from the receive function being interrupted at a frequent rate. Even if the switching is electronic the rapid
    switching of the receive function can be hard on some operators' ears.

    Setting a certain level of delay sets the rig up for semi-break-in. In this setup the rig does not switch to receive
    after every character element, but at the pre-set interval. The relay, or whatever the switching system involves,
    doesn't have to work so hard so there can be less noise.

    Further, if the transceiver is being used to drive an amplifier, the keying function of the amplifier
    is engaged by the same relay or other switching system. A switching delay needs to be set appropriately
    for the switching characteristic(s) of the amplifier. An appropriate delay allows the RF generation in the
    rig and the RF amplification in the amplifier to stop before the receiver is switched in.

    Many rigs also have provision for an adjustable delay of RF generation following the closing of a key or keyer
    circuit. This delay may be needed to prevent the switching process to interrupt the first character element.

    Somewhere down the road of learning CW operating all this will become clear to you, if it is not now clear.
     
    W7TCT and K3XR like this.
  4. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    If you don't like hearing the RX come back to life at all when you're transmitting, switch to "MOX" (manually operated transmitter) and the RX will never come back until you switch from TX back to RX, manually (usually flipping a switch).
     
    W7TCT likes this.
  5. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page

    Are you familiar with how the VOX circuit works?

    You speak, and the rig goes to transmit.

    When you stop speaking, there is a slight delay before the rig returns to receive.

    That delay is called by some "Hang time".

    In SEMI BREAK-IN CW it's basically the same thing.

    Hit the key, goes to transmit.

    Stop keying, after a DELAY it goes back to receive.

    It's that DELAY that is adjustable for your preference.

    If you're receive ONLY, it will have no affect.
     
    WB5YUZ, W5BIB, W7TCT and 1 other person like this.
  6. W5WTH

    W5WTH Ham Member QRZ Page

    Let me give in a try. I don't own that rig, but it probably has three settings: Break In, Full Break in, and No Transmit.

    Let's do No Transmit 1st because it is the easiest. In this mode you will hear your CW beeps but they will not be transmitted. Think of it like a practice mode.

    Full Break In mode: In this mode every time to press the CW key the rig will switch from Rx to Tx. Right when you let off the CW Key you will hear 'stuff' being received. On my rig (IC7300) I typically run in this mode and I can hear a relay clicking every time I push or let off the CW key. Think of it this way..... You are never 'deaf' to what is being received as long as you are not transmitting.

    Break in Mode: This is where the delay setting is used. This thread has actually made me decide to switch to this mode and adjust the delay. In this mode when you CW key down to TX there is a delay (that delay is set by you) before the rig goes back to Rx (receive) mode. Play with it some; turn the power down and connect a dummy load. If you have the delay turn way up (long) after you CW key down there will be a long delay before you are able to hear 'static' again. Now, turn the delay all the way down (short) and after you CW Key down you will hear 'static' almost immediately. Think of it this way.... pretend you had one rig for Tx and one rig for Rx connected to one antenna thru a coax switch. The 'delay' would be the amount of time you waited to switch the coax switch from the Tx to the Rx after you stopped sending.

    Now...... I am a new ham and even newer to CW so if someone tells you all the above is BS then you should probably believe them and not me.

    I was running in FULL Break In mode because I like to hear what it going on while I am transmitting. However, the clicking relay sometimes bothers me so, thanks to your question, I am experimenting with just Break In mode and a minimum delay.

    So.... my new question is: What mode do most Ops use? If it's not FULL Break in what delay is typical and why would you want long vs short?

    73!
     
  7. KL7AJ

    KL7AJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    In most modern rigs, the transceiver uses the VOX circuit to do the T/R switching...so Hang time, etc. are the same as with SSB....unless you have a full QSK setting. (My Ten Tec Jupiter has AMAZING QSK, by the way...the sweetest and smoothest I've ever used.)
     
    W5BIB likes this.
  8. WB5YUZ

    WB5YUZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Don't overlook using manual control. I use a footswitch; this way I can easily choose when to listen. It's not as fast as true QSK, but I can still listen between words, or, in the case of working in a pile-up, pause very briefly between the 5 and the Y to see if the DX has already answered someone else. (That's the curse of having a long call. But it's the only one I've ever had, and it was issued sequentially in 1976, shortly before they started recycling them, so I am reluctant to change it.)

    In addition, I don't like hearing the transmit relay clattering. It is the sound of component being pushed too hard. Real QSK should probably use electronic switching, like TenTec did.
     
  9. K3XR

    K3XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    You may want to know out of curiosity but in the end, it's the method that best fits your style of operation that can range from the full break-in to manual transmit/receive operation.
     
  10. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page

    Can't say what most use... but when I got my first FULL break-in rig, I didn't like it. Took some getting used to hearing receiver noise between the dits. Now I can't go the other way. I need to hear the receiver. I want to hear if there's any qrm on my sig. (especially helpful if you operate QRP)

    It's also possible when two ops both are adept at using QSK to have an actual 'conversation', much like VOX operation on SSB. (unlike AM operations where they typically flip the switch and take turns which is what most CW QSO are like)

    Ya know what I would like in a QSK rig? A 'ducking' circuit that would cut the speaker volume when transmitting... that would be a nice feature.
     

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