Vibroplex Bug Question - new to this

Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by KN4CQB, Mar 22, 2020.

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  1. WA1GXC

    WA1GXC Ham Member QRZ Page


    Serenity Now!

    You're never alone here, my friend.
    W5ESE and N2EY like this.
  2. W6MK

    W6MK Ham Member QRZ Page

    I agree. Let's work towards a reinstatement of the CW requirement for licensing. 1 wpm for Technician; 2 wpm for General; 3 wpm for Extra.

    At least that way the huge complexity of hooking up a key would be mastered in the first year of
    W9RAC, W4NNF and WN1MB like this.
  3. KN4CQB

    KN4CQB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Chuck - I think this is h
    ow it is wired. I have red to the dit and shield to the dah - still just a constant tone in either direction.

    WB5YUZ - I had actually found this link earlier, and have things set up and working fine. KD4ZFS - I had been from one end of the internet to the other. I have seen a number of videos similar, but none as good as this. Thanks all
    Thanks for the sarcasm.
    KD4ZFS likes this.
  4. WN1MB

    WN1MB XML Subscriber QRZ Page


    1) Set up your 7300 to operate CW with a hand key per the 7300 manual

    2) Wire up a plug according to the 7300 manual instructions for a hand key

    3) Statement: a hand key is basically a SPST switch

    4) Statement: a bug is basically two SPST switches in parallel - draw out a schematic of that if you have trouble understanding it

    5) At the "key end" of the plug you wired up in step 2, connect to the bug terminals

    6) With your bug properly adjusted and 7300 in "hand key CW mode" you should be good to go

    This isn't rocket surgery...

    WB5YUZ and N2EY like this.
  5. KN4CQB

    KN4CQB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Thanks Jeff - best advice so far. I have everything working. I was treating the bug as a paddle.
  6. WN1MB

    WN1MB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    You're welcome and good-good. Now get on the air and make some CW contacts!
  7. W6MK

    W6MK Ham Member QRZ Page

    There has been some miscommunication. The first response to your OP was that you needed to set
    your key type to "straight key."

    You replied that you had done that, but the problem continued. In actuality, you hadn't done that.

    Thus another response advising to adjust your bug properly (assuming that the dit contact was
    too closely-adjusted--a perfectly logical assumption).

    Finally a step-by-step explanation of everything needed especially pointing out that your rig's
    key-type menu needed to be set for a straight or hand key.

    We've all been through this kind of experience many times. What should be obvious is not obvious.

    My "sarcastic" remark does have a serious core, however. At one point the licensing system pointed
    beginners towards very simple, easy-to-use gear whose functions were almost entirely obvious.

    In an age of instant gratification, it may be useful to attend to the fact that humans learn step by step,
    not all at once.
    KC7JNJ, W4NNF, N2EY and 1 other person like this.
  8. WB5YUZ

    WB5YUZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    One final bit of advice: the overwhelming majority of hams using bugs send "dahs" that are way to slow for the speed of the "dits" the bug has been adjusted to send. This is true even of experienced ops who can send perfectly legible CW with a keyer at 35+ WPM and thus should know better.

    The late Bob Herzberg (K4JBI) gave a helpful hint about this: don't think of "pressing" the dah lever, think of "tapping" it. Works for me.
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  9. W6MK

    W6MK Ham Member QRZ Page

    Some truth to this. Slow (or long) dahs are particularly (how to say this with discretion?) noticeable with ops
    who insist on sending with a swing, either banana boat or Lake Erie variety. Or just Dixie, like a west Texas drawl.

    I admit, despite decades of bug experience, that my dahs do not exactly match automatic ones from a keyer
    at speeds above something like 27 wpm. I think this is related to the complexity of sending near-perfect
    code with semi-automatic means as with a bug or a keyer set up for bug-type sending (auto dits, handmade

    Bugs are just fine in the hands of good senders at reasonable speeds. I think sending well with a bug at 30 wpm is
    not easily achieved by many if not most of us. Of course there are the few that can send very fast indeed with a bug. The same folks who can copy at 40 wpm and higher. Not all of us live in that world.
  10. WN1MB

    WN1MB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    For the uninitiated:
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