Electronics > RF, Microwave, Ham Radio

CW ops, how did you teach yourself CW?

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Since it is the essence of radio, I would like to learn CW and use it hen I get my license. Have any of you who use CW often got any wisdom to impart to beginners. What kind of keys do you like?

When I get a radio I am hoping to get one that lets you listen between the CW. Although I used to fear the code, now I like the idea of being able to use it. How did you learn? What kind of key and rig do you use?

Finally there are some intriguing affordable rigs coming on the market.

how to teach a continuous wave ? that can't be taught , if you mean Morse code which is one of possible coding methods for CW transmission, then there are some good methods for teaching Morse code , usually by groups of 4 letters and once you master the 4  you add 4 more letters...while also ramping up the speed. 40 characters per minute a is good starting speed. i learned it during my military service almost 25 years ago and never used it since then ;)

Yes, Morse Code is what I meant, sorry!

Kim Christensen:
It's a long time ago for me (1980s) since I got my ham license. Back in those days you had to be able to read @ 20 wpm to pass the advanced license.
From what I remember, I first studied the basic format of the code and memorized all the patterns. Then practiced sending code. To practice receiving, people passed around cassettes with code on them at various speeds starting at around 5 wpm or so. Then you'd just keep practicing with faster and faster code tapes. There is a point at which you stop counting dots and dashes and start recognizing characters by  their sound. Kind of like music. That's when your speed capability jumps.
I'm sure there are some Youtube or MP3 practice files with code out there.

I was around 12 years old when I learned Morse code.  I finally got my license at 13 wpm when I was 17.  For a while I practiced with a friend using a home made oscillator and hand key.  Much later I started using a bug and eventually an electronic keyer but I still use the hand key occasionally.

Get a receiver and listen on the ham bands for CW transmissions.  In addition, ARRL broadcasts code practice daily.  Look on their website for the schedule.


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