Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by WB2WIK, Aug 23, 2016.
I dont understand Joe, why not?
The only time I'll send my call-sign just once (besides in a contest) is when I've been listening to a QSO & I don't know who was on the freq first. After they sign-off with each other, I'll send my call once & figure whoever was on the freq first will come back to me (if they can hear my QRP)
Steve / W5BIB
Read my signature below my first name.
Im betting that you're being modest Joe!
I'm calling you if I hear you!
Can't stop me!
I use a bug; I've been doing so for twenty-five years now. But I practice; whenever my fist starts sounding sloppy to me I put in a few practice sessions until it sounds better again.
I hope people won't hesitate to let me know if they are having trouble copying my bug fist. A QSD is the best way to do it. I don't get many repeat requests, though, so I think I'm doing OK.
(Well, except for my callsign. For some reason the IC 718 consistently cuts short the first dash in the "z" making it sound like it could be a Z or an L when I send faster than about 20 WPM. I can hear it in the sidetone; never had this problem with the Ten-tec or Tempo one. So I do occasionally have to correct my callsign. Sending it slowly once with the straight key usually does it.)
IC-718 attack time (key closure vs. RF output envelope) is slow. Ten Tecs are very fast, most TT rigs were really designed with CW operations in mind and foremost.
But if you're sending the Z as part of your callsign, that means you just sent a U right before that. Set it for "semi-QSK" (and not full QSK) with sufficient hang time so the relay doesn't drop out between characters and that will solve the problem. It's not a good rig for full QSK.
also slap a bug
if have not used it in a while will practice a bit
to me winter is for running HB CW rigs on 80 es 40
some how never much like running CW with modern radios
would rather use 5 to 15 watt HB transmitter and receiver
may use the NC-183D or fire up the TR-4 CW
summer mostly just run QRO phone
come fall do need to play around off the air
funny how my weak points stay the same
F, and X seem to be the letters most likely blow
also have to watch my swing some swing is nice
lots of swing not so nice
had op could not copy my bug fist
they answered my CQ, never got my call right
needed more than one repeat
( this was mid Feb when my bug fist is good
was pluging along at about 19 wpm using my slowest bug )
switch to straight key
slowed down to 7 wpm they still could not copy
to me AR means end of message
calling CQ is not a message
some times run late 40s HB lash up
meaning have to throw more than one switch and
turn down receiver audio gain
if it's 0300 local time 80 meters
band is empty
you are calling and calling cq without reply
don't use a narrow filter open up your receiver tune around
somebody may be calling you 2 kc away with a rock bound rig
still in the stacks
I envy you guys, I have been around a while and have always been active on CW but my comfort level stops at 20 wpm. I can copy 35 or even 40 but it's a real strain and I really don't enjoy CW at that speed. The vast majority of my contacts are at 20 + or - sending with a keyer and a bit slower when using a straight key which I often do just because I enjoy it.
A keyboard is not in my future, can't go fast enough to need one and can't type well enough to use one! The good thing is that I don't long for CW contacts, rarely do I call CQ without a response and seems to be plenty of ops calling CQ in my CW sweet spot.
As far as turning it back to a station I go the traditional way with K or if it's a quick exchange or I ask a question and am looking for a response to just the question like I missed the name or unsure of the grid on VHF I always use BK.
I was blessed back in the day, never had to go the knife switch route, grew up in central Ohio and there was a hamfest somewhere close all summer long, Dayton, Cincinnati, Mansfield, Akron and others. Back then you could get used dow key relays as well as high voltage switches for next to nothing.
In the words of a woman who is a state championship bicycle racer from a very populous state, "Time in the saddle is what it's all about." I was stuck at about 20 WPM for many years, but in the early '90s I began having a couple of QSOs every morning before I left for work. That, and not giving up on trying to copy the Tropical Weather Outlook on WLO (which they sent at about 30 WPM) got me to 35 WPM in a couple of months (that's when I bought the bug).
Love that Morse
I am active on the air enough, and work a variety of ops from QRSSS newbies to Old timers (like myself) who breeze along at QRQQQ speed, to use a variety of keys at different speeds.
I have my Novice station J38 right next to my Vibroplex Champ Bug and my MFJ Grandmaster keyer and vectronics paddle all wired together to use at any moment. . I even have an old Hamkey paddle wired to the internal keyer in the FT990.
I am able to go from one device to another, in a CW QSO, and keep right on going.
I may have to slow down a bit, when going back to the old straight key, to make a nice sounding stream of Morse
I only tried using a Morse keyboard a few times at a friend's station and did not like it.
I am a fast typer , only if I can go back and correct ALL the errors ! I can send Morse with a paddle about 5 X faster than I can type on a keyboard without errors.