Working newbies

Discussion in 'Straight Keys - CW Enthusiasts' started by WB2WIK, Feb 14, 2020 at 5:21 PM.

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  1. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I complain about some of their habits and techniques, but many newbies haven't really developed any yet, so it's all good.

    So, after complaining I receive a QSL card like this one (just yesterday) and it's all worthwhile.:p

    I'll keep answering newbies when I can and encourage all to stick with it -- CW 4EVR!:)

    N2OTG, WB5YUZ, KD0CAC and 4 others like this.
  2. K9ASE

    K9ASE XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'm still working on head copy but I'd be happy to have you as my first contact.
  3. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Head copy is easy.

    First, you need a head to copy, then just follow simple instructions...

    K9ASE likes this.
  4. KV4JW

    KV4JW Ham Member QRZ Page

    I shared a QSO with a guy in New York about a week ago. My sending was absolutely horrible, but he stuck with me as I tapped out one letter at a time, some with insane Farnsworth, and some that were decent. I was all over the road really, but he not once berated me or said anything negative.

    I sent him a QSL card much like the one you received, stating that he was my very FIRST morse code QSO. I'm sure it was as much of a feather in his hat as it was mine.
    KU4X and K9ASE like this.
  5. K7MEM

    K7MEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I know I told this story before, but I will repeat it again.

    Over 20 years ago, I was tuning around the Novice portion of 40 meters. Except for a few broadcast stations, it was empty. I sent out a few CQs, but didn't get a response. Then I started hearing a CW signal, but it wasn't a CW. Figuring it was just a QSO in progress, I started to copy it. The operator was instead sending "hello is anyone out there can anyone hear me?" followed by his call sign, a short pause, and he would repeat the message. It was pretty slow, but very easy to read. So during one pause, I gave him a call. He was totally excited. This was his first contact and he didn't know how to call another station. We chatted for a short while and then he signed off. He was excited but also exhausted.

    I never heard a call like that again.
    K9ASE likes this.
  6. K1DBO

    K1DBO Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Where to folks stand on working newbies with zero CW skills... sending with a keyboard and decoding with a skimmer? I hear it works well enough for S&P in a contest, but what about for a quick DX contact or rag chewing?

    ...asking for a friend.
  7. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    It will work, but it's best to get used to actual CW operating procedure.

    In the old days, we did that mostly by listening to hundreds of CW QSOs before ever transmitting, and pretty much following what others were doing.
    WB5YUZ likes this.
  8. K1DBO

    K1DBO Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Learning the operating procedures is really my... err, mmmm, my friend's real intention. Ok.. ok... it is me. Fine.

    I dont care much for phone, RTTY outside of contests seems non-existent, and the digimode world is all FT8. Now, I love FT8 as much as the next guy. It's a bit faster than the macro based psk31 QSOs that were popular a few years back. But at least with psk31 I sometimes got the impression there was a person at the other end. Some folks even seemed to apply CW like operating procedures. I miss that.

    I've been trying to learn CW and have made some progress but not nearly enough to even consider using a key or to even copy a contest exchange. I have, however, found that as long I stick to search and pounce I can do reasonably well in a CW contest with a keyboard and a skimmer .

    I guess what I'm really wondering is, if I were to take my current (lack of ) skill set and my technological aids to the bands and start calling CQ, how well would that be accepted outside of a contest? If I had the operating procedures down, would anyone even notice or care?
  9. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Sure it would.

    I work stations who are obviously using keyboards on CW (and maybe computers for decoding it), and I can tell because their code reads like typing...that is, they use commas and periods and fully spelled words and stuff, since on a keyboard that's normal and really easy.

    Using a key, nobody does that.

    We mostly send stuff like TU UR 599 QTH LOS ANGELES OP STEVE HW? which is a bunch of abbreviations that CW ops use all the time. But using punctuation and spelling out words isn't just takes longer.:)

    At least, if you're a good typist and type faster than the computer sends (buffering), you can send absolutely flawless CW, which is pretty easy to copy!
  10. K1LKP

    K1LKP Premium Subscriber QRZ Page


    73 - K1LKP

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