Vibroplex Bug Question - new to this

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

ad: L-HROutlet
ad: l-rl
ad: L-MFJ
ad: Subscribe
ad: Left-3
ad: abrind-2
ad: Left-2
  1. WB5YUZ

    WB5YUZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    My bug sending isn't perfect either. But I strive to make it sound as much like computer-generated copy as possible.

    27 WPM is about my limit for an extended QSO. On a good day I can get to 35, for about a minute, but I can't do it consistently or for very long, even though I can get very close to solid copy on the W1AW qualifying runs at 30 WPM and can "head copy" pretty easily at that speed. I can and often do hit the 35 WPM mark for 599 TU-style DX QSOs.

    Whether or not I do it well is another matter. But it is not hard to find me on 20m during the day or 40m during the evening, and I'm always up for a ragchew, so everyone is free to judge for themselves.
    N2EY and WN1MB like this.
  2. N2EY

    N2EY Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

  3. WA1GXC

    WA1GXC Ham Member QRZ Page

    "...He's got a day-time job, he's doing alright !"

    Note to World: Swing not cool. Swing not mark of the professional. Swing = (ahem) Slob.
    To pull-off the Banana Boat Swing, you're required to actually be sitting 80 feet above 30 metric
    tonnes of bananas.

    Find an old ARRL publication, any ARRL black-and-red paperback, from the Olden Times.

    Pick up for $.50 at any Hamfest.

    "Learning the Radiotelegraph Code", "Operating an Amateur Radio Station", "Becoming a Radio

    Amateur." The human mind hasn't changed, expectations have. Gotta practice, be a little frustrated,

    more practice. No human being on the planet Earth has any business going to a speed key until

    he or she has mastered a straight key and knows what CW should sound like. Then, move up.

    You can't play with the Boston Symphony Orchestra simply because you picked up a kazoo.

    It's hard work, tedious, and requires effort. Then you're rewarded.

    "Blessed are the Cheesemakers."

    N2OTG, W5ESE, W9RAC and 3 others like this.
  4. K1LKP

    K1LKP Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

  5. WN1MB

    WN1MB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I think that's a bit, ahem ... course.

    I'll grant you that having a Lake Erie swing shouldn't be the goal of aspiring bug users. Quality 3:1 dash-to-dot formation/timing should be the goal, of course. However, the bug is only a mechanical device with its own inherent limitations. Put a human being with its own imperfections in charge of the bug, and you end up with a wide range of "quality" Morse code sent.

    I listened to from the link K1LKP offered, copied the bug sent Morse just fine, and didn't find that particular "swing" objectionable. I've heard worse sounding Morse sent on hand keys and electronic keyers.

    However, I'll also grant you that some bug users - and venture to say very few - just don't give a hoot and figure "close enough." The vast majority of bug users will openly admit their sending could use some improvement. The two or three folks on the forums here who claim to send perfect Morse with a bug are either delusional or liars.

    A corollary:

    Years ago in a former life, I mixed house sound for bands in clubs and small concert venues. One of my mentors told me something very important. He said something like "If I see a guy at a mix board who isn't constantly tweaking the mix all night long, I see a guy who isn't a sound man - I see a guy who isn't listening - I see a guy who compromises and thinks 'Close enough'. A mix is never perfect."

    That mentor's words haunt me to this day - but in a good way.

    Progress, not perfection.
    WA1GXC and N2EY like this.
  6. WN1MB

    WN1MB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Nor this:

  7. K1LKP

    K1LKP Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page


    K2LP .......... HIS NAME IS BUD........


    ANOTHER OLE RASCAL IS K5KV.......BENNY...........

  8. WA1GXC

    WA1GXC Ham Member QRZ Page

    Acknowledge coarse. Sorry. A little too much energy making a point.

    So here's something a little better articulated:

    From the ARRL Radio Amateur's Handbook
    41st Ed. 1964-----47th Ed. 1970

    "Perhaps one of the easiest ways to get into bad habits is to do too much playing around with special keys.
    Too many operators spend only enough time with a straight key to acquire "passable" sending, then subject
    their newly-developed 'fists' to the entirely different movements of bugs, side-swipers, electronic keys, or
    what-have-you. All too often, this results in the ruination of what might have become a very good 'fist'.
    Think about your sending a little. Are you satisfied with it? You should not be -Ever. Nobody's sending is
    perfect, and therefore every operator should continually strive for improvement."

    1970 page 596

    W5ESE, WN1MB and N2EY like this.
  9. N2EY

    N2EY Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Best sending advice EVER - for all kinds of keys.


    Also this:

    The way you know that someone is good at using any kind of key is when others can't tell they are using one.
    N2OTG, W5ESE and WN1MB like this.
  10. N2EY

    N2EY Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Which is better than having to deal with 30,000 pounds of bananas.


    WN1MB and WA1GXC like this.

Share This Page