Fast CW and QSO rates?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by N7TAT, Feb 21, 2021.

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  1. W7HV

    W7HV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Personally, I'm not terribly interested in contesting, but for those who are, that's part of the equation, figuring out what is going to net you the best score. Those who do well have it figured out.
  2. WZ7U

    WZ7U Ham Member QRZ Page

    You sound like my cardiologist concerning getting out to walk the dog more. :oops:

    Still good advice if you want results. ;)
  3. W3SY

    W3SY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Oh my God..... How many "agrees" can I legally give this?? I hit the Novice Roundup (remember that?) pretty early in my hamming days. Being a young squirt, I already had a knack for CW, but my speed increased measurably just from that contest.

    By the way, one way to break through plateaus in CW speed it to practice SENDING. Send from a book or magazine. Send from your own thoughts. When CW tests (remember THAT??) became "receive only," I heard from people running code classes that there was no sending being taught. I couldn't believe it! I have ALWAYS believed that practicing sending helps receive speed and vice versa. They're two different thought processes, going from Morse to English and going from English to Morse, and they indirectly "help" each other. Build one, and the other benefits to a certain extent.

    Traditionally, newer operators would say their maximum sending speed was greater than their maximum receiving speed. Not surprising. Separate mental processes. But they help each other. What's a code oscillator cost? (Ummm... do they still make them??) Get a good brass straight key (not the plastic garbage). Spending a good amount of time with SENDING practice is THE most overlooked technique for increasing code speed. [/SOAPBOX]
    K8PG and KP4SX like this.
  4. N2EY

    N2EY XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    The short answer is YES.

    The big guns do what works. They'd do 5 wpm if that worked. They go the speeds they do because it works.

    Look at their QSO totals

    Note the current high claimed score (KP2M) - 6479 Qs in 39.5 hours by a single-op all-band high-power station. That's 1 qso every 22 seconds for the entire contest. Over 164 per hour, every hour.

    One doesn't make thousands of Qs in a weekend by going slow.

    I'll let you in on a secret: CWOps.

    They run CW Academy to help newcomers learn and others improve.

    For improving one's contesting, the CWTs are a wonderfulresource:

    Every week, in the middle of the week, there are three one-hour mini-contests called CWTs. While most participants are members of CWOps, membership is not a requirement. The exchange is simple, the pace fast, and it really helps. Logs are not submitted, one merely posts claimed scores to 3830scores. The point of the CWTs is to develop and sharpen one's skills - and it works.

    When I first started doing the CWTs back in late 2018, I thought I was doing really really good to make 60 Qs/hr. Most sessions I did in the 40s and 50s. Today, I typically do in the 60s and 70s - and my record is 86 Qs.

    That may not sound like much until you realize that those totals are all S&P, unassisted - no running, no calling CQ, no spotter network. And they're all made with my homebrew station:

    What I'm trying to say is that, rather than trying to get the fast folks to slow down, you can become one of them. You can get to the point where anything under 30 wpm sounds s-l-o-w.

    Nobody is born knowing Morse Code - I sure wasn't. But rather than just say "practice", there are real ways to improve one's speed and accuracy - if you want to.

    73 es GL de Jim, N2EY
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021 at 6:26 PM
    N4UP, N5HXR, W4LJ and 3 others like this.
  5. US7IGN

    US7IGN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Most do not listen at all, but use the cluster and spots. And everyone can make out his callsign at any speed)

    And YES!

    I did exactly this.
  6. US7IGN

    US7IGN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Not in contest please...
    NB3R and W4NNF like this.
  7. W4NNF

    W4NNF XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I can copy them at you observe, in the context of a contest, you get a boost in your speed. I opined to the XYL after the contest was over last night, "What with the QRM/QRN, they'd probably have a higher QSO rate at a more "reasonable" speed. I do S&P, and rarely go over 25 in my sending...I think I get less AGN-AGNs that way. :)
    WA1GXC and KD7MW like this.
  8. K8BZ

    K8BZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    You said a mouth full! The entire package is outstanding. The weekly CW Ops contest periods will definitely help you hone your contest skills. CW Academy is so popular and effective that there is a waiting period to get in. And you couldn't be more correct when you said the best contesters do what they do because it provides the best results. If you are trying to figure out which conflicting words of contesting advice carries the most weight, compare the advisors scores on 3830 reflector.
    N4UP, W4LJ, N3AWS and 1 other person like this.
  9. N7TAT

    N7TAT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm not sure my original Q was that clear. Let me expand a bit.

    I'm reacting to contest stations calling CQ at fast speeds and receiving no replies. It would seem to me that QRS in that situation to maybe 15 might drum up some slow contacts that are much better than no contacts.

    But what do I know, I'm not a contester.
  10. W1VT

    W1VT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yes, slowing down may drum up some slow speed contacts. But, if you have to repeat the info a couple times it isn't worth it. The longer you have to listen to a slow weak station the more likely stations will crowd into your frequency or ask if it is use.
    You also run into the danger of getting answered by folks who aren't even in the contest. Then what?

    Zak W1VT
    N2SR, N2EY, K8BZ and 1 other person like this.

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