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Author Topic: 1st CW QSO  (Read 1504 times)
AB0SI
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Posts: 79




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« on: August 29, 2004, 10:37:26 PM »

Just finished my first CW QSO. Wow, what an expereince. Fun and challenging. My victim, K7CCC, was kind enough to pretend to understand what I was sending (copy what I MEANT, not what I SENT). I think the most frequent character I sent was a string of dits for error correction. Smiley

I doubt that I am going to turn in my microphone, but it is great to have yet another aspect of the hobby opening up to me.

Looking forward to working you (phone, cw, digital or even <gasp/choke> echolink).

Only 49 more to go for my CW WAS!

73

Paul AB0SI
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N8UZE
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Posts: 1524




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« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2004, 12:04:38 PM »

Congrats! Fun isn't it.
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20611




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« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2004, 01:20:01 PM »

I'd be happy to "sked" you for a CW contact if we have propagation and can get on the air at the same time.

BTW, it's normal to be nervous at first, but please *don't* send strings of "dits" after making mistakes. This takes up a lot of time and is very frustrating for the other station, as you're wasting his time, too.

If you make a mistake, forget about it -- just keep sending.  If the other op is really a CW op, he'll figure it out.  The "8 dits" for "error" is a formality normally only used in traffic handling, where a miscopy could be a very bad thing.  In "rag chewing," it isn't important.  Just keep sending.  If you really feel compelled to indicate you've made a mistake, just to make yourself feel better, send "di-dit di-dit," like two letter "i"s spaced closely together; this is the more appropriate, and less time consuming, way to indicate a mistake was sent.

But most *real* CW ops wouldn't bother indicating a mistake.  If it's something important like your name, just send it again.  If it's something unimportant, just forget about it and keep going.

Welcome to the CW bands!

WB2WIK/6
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AB0SI
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Posts: 79




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« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2004, 01:24:50 PM »

N8UZE:

Fun is the word I used the first time, although exhusting would be closer to the mark. After the 45-minute QSO I felt drained.

It would have been easier if Dave at the other end and stuck to the standard QSO script (I had the standard stuff all written down as sending from a script is MUCH easier for me) but he started the QSO off with "GE OM = Have beer, do u?" I didn't have a response scripted for that. Smiley

I must say, as bad as I was at it, I felt a sense of accomplishment. Soemthing which passing the silly multiple guess questions when I got my license never gave me.

Being dyslexic makes both sending and copying a bit difficult, but then I hae a perfect record in SSB of never getting a callsign right the first time, so no news there.

The person who got me into ham radio was kind enough to make me a puff&sip "paddle" as shown in QST several months ago. Since I have a bit of nerve damage, that made it a bit easier. Did half the QSO with it and half with a Bencher paddle. (For those who haven't seen the article, the Puff and Sip acts like a single level paddle controlled by blowing through a tube for dahs and sucking [sipping] for dits.)

I was encouraged enough to continue practicing. I hope to get to a reasonable speed reasonably soon.

If you hear me on the air, stop by and say hello. jsut say it slowly. Smiley

Paul  AB0SI
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AB0SI
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Posts: 79




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« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2004, 01:29:37 PM »

WB2WIK:

Thanks! I aprpeciate the advice. Sending all those dits did seem a bit silly, but I was trying to follow SOP. Your point makes a great deal of sense -- even to a newbie.Smiley

I'd love to have a QSo with you, but I ahve a perfect record of NEVER getting a slash copied correctly. Smiley

Thanks again for the advice.. very helpful

Paul AB0SI
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N0XAS
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Posts: 71


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« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2004, 04:51:14 PM »

"I'd love to have a QSo with you, but I ahve a perfect record of NEVER getting a slash copied correctly. Smiley "


... so now you know, when you run across a character you don't recognize, just write a slash -- chances are you'll be right!!  Right?  

:-)
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20611




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« Reply #6 on: August 30, 2004, 05:34:20 PM »

Besides, Paul, I never send the "slash" when operating CW, or say, "portable six" when operating phone, unless I am specifically answering a DX station who is calling for "Sixes only."

Oh, or if I'm in the CQ WPX contest, where your prefix is actually altered by your location, e.g., WB2WIK/6 counts as a "WB6," and that's a contest (not FCC) rule.

So, don't worry about the "slash."

Also, take a deep breath and get comfortable, and start hearing code without writing any of it down.  It's much less work, and you'll actually get more of what the other station's sending.  Just listen.  Sometimes it helps to close your eyes, and then listen, to avoid room distractions.

73 & CU on CW,

Steve WB2WIK/6
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KC0KVS
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Posts: 8




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« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2004, 01:32:24 PM »

Welcome to the CW world AB0SI!!  I just got back into Ham radio about 3 years ago, and my first contacts were on 2 meters and 10 meters ssb and FM.  About 2 years ago, I broke down and bought a straight key and I thought I should try CW.  Well, my first contact was a Op from the state of Wasington and I was only using 20 watts!  Boy was I hooked!  Since then I only use CW except whenever I talk to my dad(KB0GFR) on 2 meters.
  Dont worry about speed, the nicest Hams are CW Ops--IMO hi hi!  Keep going and enjoy!
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KB1LKR
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Posts: 1898




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« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2004, 05:54:22 PM »

"GE OM = Have beer, do u?" That is TOO funny! I'm still studying for the Element 1 test, and own no CW gear whatsoever yet, but I can imagine having a script in mind, only to have the QSO ad lib instead!

It's stories like yours that encourage me to keep studying. Thanks.

Also WB2WIK (/6? <grin>), and all, thanks for the other tips (CW and otherwise in the various forums), it'll be good when my turn comes.

73

de Steve - KB1LKR
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K3ESE
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Posts: 57


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« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2004, 08:03:46 AM »

CW ROCKS!!!  I've always been all CW. Never owned a mic. I fancy myself a wordsmith at times (self-deluded,) but I can't express what's so fabulous about Morse Code.  I do look forward to, almost every evening, sitting down for some delightful ragchewing.

  If you, too, find that you love the whole concept of communicating with CW, none of the thousands of hours you'll spend on your way to being comfortable at 25-30 wpm will seem like work! Get the G4FON Koch Trainer software, use it a couple of times a day...get on your radio and spend time copying QSOs that allow you to copy 50-60% of the code...until it seems no fun...and have your own QSOs! Most ops will QRS for you, if need be.

  Enjoy!

  Lloyd, K3ESE
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NJ0E
Member

Posts: 48




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« Reply #10 on: September 28, 2004, 04:22:21 PM »

K3ESE
-----

> If you, too, find that you love the whole concept
> of communicating with CW, none of the thousands
> of hours you'll spend on your way to being
> comfortable at 25-30 wpm will seem like work!

i agree with this.

heyyy, lloyd! thanks for the qso's sunday night
in the new jersey qrp homebrewer sprint! (20m &
40m).

73/72
scott nj0e

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N8YAD
Member

Posts: 14




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« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2004, 07:03:27 PM »

Paul -
Congrats on the license and the first (I know, draining) CW QSO!! Welcome - Where abouts do you hang out for CW? I hope to meet you sometime on the air. I use a straight key so I know slow...no problem. Better to be accurate than fast right?? Take care & 73!! Congrats again and welcome to the "outdated" side of ham radio...(outdated = best, right??)

- Ben
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