Vibroplex bob weight thread?

Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by G0ILN, Jun 11, 2019.

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  1. G0ILN

    G0ILN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Point taken regarding Chinese tools.In a previous thread I did mention that I am going metric. Which I have now done.
    I used metric brass studding and made little brass thumb screw heads. I am just waiting for the Locktite to dry..
  2. WB4BIN

    WB4BIN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I make my own "square" weights for the flat bar bugs (Champion, Lightning, Zephyr). But I don't have a mill, so they are all hand made. I drill and tap an 8-32 thread, and use thumb screws I get from McMaster-Carr hardware. If they don't have it, it probably doesn't exist. Of course the shipping cost across the pond will likely make it prohibitively expensive.
  3. G0ILN

    G0ILN Ham Member QRZ Page

    All understood. I have a Lionel Bug key with the same square bob weight. Quiet a difficult weight to manufacture without a milling machine.
    I looked at the McMasters website WOW they seem to stock everything for the handy man!
    I have now finished the weight and fitted my own 4mm thumb screw but I am disappointed with the speed reduction!With the original two weights in place I have doubled the total weight and calculate the speed has dropped from 27 wpm to 22 wpm .Thinking about it at least I can live with that speed but if I work anyone slower I can't slow down any more.The twin paddle keyer certainly has its advantages but the bug key is fun to master and to my eye they look terrific!
  4. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page

    Lengthen the pendulum arm, that'll really slow it down. I run my J36 with a spring type wooden clothes pin sticking out the back. I find it's a better solution than extra weight.

    Look at the "Vari-speed" thingy that Vibroplex sells...
    WB4BIN likes this.
  5. WB4BIN

    WB4BIN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yep, lengthening the pendulum arm is by far the most effective way to slow a bug down. I have the Vari-Speed thing on my original bug, and it works well. But they don't work on flat bar bugs (my favorite), so I'm fabricating an adjustable pendulum arm lengthening contraption right now.

    We'll see how it goes. :D
  6. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page

    I got as far as the clothesline!

    I filed a couple notches into the mouth of the clothes pin so it would grip the flat bar on the J36. Looks like he77, smells like laundry, but works great!
  7. G0ILN

    G0ILN Ham Member QRZ Page

    When I bought the Vibroplex it came with a Alligator clip and a small weight off a balance scale . (Like they used to use in a chemist shop).(or like scales of justice)

    The round portion of the Alligator clip is a good fit on the end of the Pendulum and the weight can be moved up and down the clip. It work's very well . When I am on my radio I always have two keys plugged in ,a straight key and a paddle key. I use a twin 3.5 stereo jack plug adaptor.

    J36 . I moded the arm by adding a "Z" shaped flat aluminium strip .One end is held in place to the original weight by locking it under the weight thumb screw. The other end of the "Z" is above the damper bar arrangement. The strip is drilled for a screw and on the screw are several old nuts!
    (No comment!)
    I really don't want anything hanging out beyond the perimeter of the base on my Vibroplex as I have limited space on my table top.
    I will probably end up making my own version of the Vari- Speed arrangement but I won't lose any sleep over it!
    WR2E likes this.
  8. K8JD

    K8JD Ham Member QRZ Page

    Evidence Against Extra Weight
    I am not for increasing the wieght on a bug pendulum but prefer lengthening the bar with an add on extension, if you have to slow down the dits.
    My thought is extra weight will wear the bearings out prematurely and unevenly.
    I have had my Champion for over ten years and after a year of using more weight, I had to tighten up the bearing that got sloppy, since then, with a pendulum extension I have used now and then, for QRS, no more bearing slop to tighten out ! !
    WR2E likes this.
  9. G0ILN

    G0ILN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I think from an engineering point of view you are perfectly right . So a peg or maybe the alligator clip ( see my last post ) is the way to go.
  10. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page

    Same here, but the 'scoffers' will always carp at ya and say it ain't so. It's happened here.

    NO! hahahaha ... say it ain't so!

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