Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by KB1CKT, Sep 19, 2017.

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  1. N3HEE

    N3HEE Ham Member QRZ Page

    N2EY - Thanks for the history lesson Jim ! You have a nice looking station there. I was licensed in 1976 at age 13. Mostly CW but have played around with many modes over the years. -Joe N3HEE
  2. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    When you hear a "bad tone," make sure you turn off your noise blanker (NB, NR, whatever your receiver might have) first before evaluating such.

    A noise blanking system can make a perfect T9 tone sound lousy under many conditions.

    I work CW almost every day and never hear a T5 tone. Now and then I'll work (usually a Russian station) somebody using WW2 vintage surplus equipment, some of which was intended for battery operation only, with about a T7 tone...and it really is that bad. But it's rare, and almost always someone using modified WW2 surplus gear.
    WA7PRC likes this.
  3. KB1CKT

    KB1CKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Was chasing an HW-101 the other night, but at least the tone was good. I should record what I hear, it's not all the time, but sometimes there seems to be several.

    No NR or NB here.
  4. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    What is the receiver?
  5. KB1CKT

    KB1CKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Them? No idea. Me? TenTec Omni C, 1.8MHz filter and audio filter at "1".
  6. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I had an OMNI-C.

    Of course it has a noise blanker, and that distorts and adds a "buzz" to CW signals if it's engaged (depending on local conditions and lots of variables).

    The NB is engaged when you pull the ALC panel knob "out." It's turned off when you push the knob in.

    Make sure it's "in."
  7. W6MQI

    W6MQI Ham Member QRZ Page

    I remember back in the 70's when one heard a chirpy CW signal the probability it was a Russian station was high seemed like all those guys sounded the same. They were super easy to QSL as well page after page of box 88 Moscow.

    My Kenwood TS-590 will do this if the NB is turned up too high first time I heard this I thought there was something wrong with the rig nope just operator error.
  8. KB1CKT

    KB1CKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    No noise blanker. No issues tonight. Well, I don't know if the radio has a NB installed, but enabling it doesn't do anything (that I can hear).
  9. N8AFT

    N8AFT Ham Member QRZ Page

    It is too unusual to be hearing several bad toned CW signals as regularly as you're reporting...
    During the solar storm a week ago however, everything was warbling, even W1AW.
    Sounds very receiver adjustment related.
    What happens when you reduce your RF Gain? Is the AGC turned on? Fast or Slow?
    You may be overdriving the front end causing a distortion.
    As example, I always run with the AGC turned off...
    I adjust for signal level using the RF Gain adjustment and volume.
    I turn RF gain down to just before the signal gets extinguished then up a tad.
    It may take some practical experience or you to master CW reception but it will come.
    VY 73.
  10. KB1CKT

    KB1CKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I can't turn AGC off but I run with very low RF gain, so as to get the same result. AGC set to fast, just in case I find someone who is strong. External speaker so AF gain is relatively low too: I "tune up" by setting RF to zero, running filters wide, raise AF until receiver noise is at "my" limit. Then I lower receiver selectivity to where I prefer it (1.8kHz plus some audio filtering). Then raise RF until I hear band noise, and then off I go. Ride RF as necessary, usually it's only a few stations that need to be dialed back on gain, most aren't strong enough, as my 40m vertical is ground mounted and probably shaded too much where I am (trees, hills, etc) (yes, good ground plane under it, many radials).

    Didn't hear any bad tone last night, but I didn't spend much time in the Novice section either.

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