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Author Topic: Should contesters on CW send at speeds way above 20WPM  (Read 12773 times)
N7DM
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Posts: 671




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« Reply #15 on: December 01, 2011, 07:05:14 PM »

Interesting bunch of chit-chat. I am a 'long term' CW OP. I can't remember when I couldn't read 35/40 in my head; *NEVER* managed to control ANY kind of keyer 'error free' over 30.  I 'talk'...visit...on CW at any speed you care to send, provided you don't mind MY QRS to 28/30 these days. My 'Super Contester' pal is CW *ONLY* and has been for the few decades I've known him. He is pretty darned good at DX, with every certificate I ever heard of. He can copy CALLS and 5NN really fast, but we cannot rag chew 'cuz he can't read NOR copy real world Morse!!

If you don't have the Pizzaz for 'quick', just stay UP the band a little where guys like my Pal will be.  Tricks to every trade, OM

dm
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AK7V
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Posts: 249




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« Reply #16 on: December 01, 2011, 10:14:00 PM »

For what it's worth, I have no problem rag chewing at 30-40 wpm, although above 35 I make sending errors, especially when I'm tired. Copying call signs I can do at 50 without much trouble. I did CQWW at about 37wpm because that felt good to me and most people seemed to be around there, maybe 35.

I think most people can and do run contest exchanges faster than they chat. Practicing with RufzXP helps a lot. Also, having QSOs at the higher end of your ability will speed you up. And of course head copy is key. Forget the pencil and paper.

Anyway, I'm a relatively young ham who has been QRT for most of the years I've been licensed. Morse is like riding a bike, though. You might be a little wobbly when you get back on, but it comes back quick.
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K3STX
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Posts: 961




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« Reply #17 on: December 02, 2011, 03:55:59 AM »

Morse is like riding a bike, though. You might be a little wobbly when you get back on, but it comes back quick.

How true! I was QRT TWICE for 10 year gaps, amazing how it came back each time and I was back up to speed in no time.

paul
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N3QE
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Posts: 2094




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« Reply #18 on: December 02, 2011, 04:08:21 AM »

I think most people can and do run contest exchanges faster than they chat.

For contesters, I think that's probably true. But I came into contesting with a 35 WPM ARRL Code Proficiency certificate and a lot of ragchewing experience at those kinds of speeds.  And I was having a hard time with the burst-type operation of contesting.

Quote
Practicing with RufzXP helps a lot.

For sure! I highly recommend it. My only complaint is that few real world callsigns are as lengthy as the ones RufZXP likes to use (e.g. "HG0/LY1ZKE/QRP").

And it's not quite a truly realistic contest simulator... it needs to include the frustration of waiting 3, 5, 10 minutes for the runner to send his call but he never does!
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AB2T
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Posts: 246




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« Reply #19 on: December 02, 2011, 07:32:18 AM »

Contest/DX CW is very repetitive.  Heck, contest exchanges are printed in QST and probably online now.  Study the exchange and listen to the signals.  Eventually you'll pick up what's going on.    

I can't send faster than 18~20 wpm on paddles accurately, so I have to rely on a computer to do the sending for speeds faster than that.  Never understood CWget; just ASCII garbage on a screen.  Pressing function keys over and over again doesn't feel like "sending CW".  At that point contesting's no different than playing Simon or an "intelligent toy".  

73, Jordan
« Last Edit: December 02, 2011, 07:35:18 AM by AB2T » Logged
STAYVERTICAL
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Posts: 854




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« Reply #20 on: December 02, 2011, 03:16:54 PM »


I operate CW just about every day, and my personal goal is always to challenge myself and increase my skill in whatever I do.
This applies to CW and so I can now receive and send to 45WPM (with a paddle).
However - I will match the speed of any station who I qso with, so their is no problem at the receiving end.

But once one gets proficient at some higher speeds, it becomes enjoyable both sending and receiving at those speeds, since the process becomes more subconscious than conscious.
So there are some benefits to working at higher speeds, the whole process becomes like driving a car where you get to your destination and dont remember the details of the trip - the subconscious mind takes over.

I have used a keyboard and find it great, but use a paddle simply because it takes fewer mouse movements to make a log entry, since I dont have to click off the PC keying program and click on the callsign field.
Also, using a paddle improves your receiving speed, since you have to read the code while sending it, although I have found after a while you can actually send without sidetone, since your hand becomes used to the actions at a certain speed.
And of course, paddles look cool, and set up a part of your brain specially for that skill.

The best advice I can give anyone wishing to increase their speed, is to simply do lots of CW, and for a short time listen to morse that is too fast for you to receive, then when you go back to your comfortable speed, you will find it a lot easier.
On CW receiving programs, they are a joke, they cause more harm than good, by distracting you from receiving by ear, and for my type of operating (low signal dx), are totally unusable.

Persistence will bring you to whatever speed you wish, and remember there are 90 year old guys out there doing morse at good speeds, so can you.

73s
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VA7CPC
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Posts: 2358




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« Reply #21 on: December 02, 2011, 03:46:58 PM »

Quote
An excellent way to get burst call-copying speed up, is RufZXP. I can't recommend it enough. Copying a call at a given WPM has a lot in common with, but is not exactly the same skillset, as casual ragchewing at the same speed.

If the original poster wants to increase his speed (for contest exchanges) to 40 wpm, RufZXP is the most effective way to do it.

After enough hours of practice that "buzz" at 40 wpm actually becomes readable!

             Charles
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VK4TJF
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Posts: 93




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« Reply #22 on: December 02, 2011, 07:07:27 PM »

i think that i will weigh in on this one
I learned cw using computer software like RUFZ and just learn morse code
not only can I type at 40 wpm but I can also copy the same speed
now contesting is particularly easy just a call sign RST subset for the contest
and TU 73 and ee. much more complicated is conversational cw which drops
my speed to 25 or 30 wpm. this is other thing many of the same stations
enter the same contests making it even easier to recognize the call sign
and of course if you know propagation like all day you have been working
stations from one area then all of a sudden in pops another call that is out of
the blue then you know you may be wrong. I really like getting a line up/pile up
of JA's they are the best ops very nice regimented. the other real good cw ops
are the Russians they have the best fists. very clean cw, easy to read. I once had a
couple of QSO's with DJ1YFK Fabian the guy that maintains the great site learn cw on line
and let me say that he has a great fist as well. so the more you practice at it the better
you will become. use morse runner and RUFZ and most of all do some more contests
and sit in the chair for 24 hrs doing cw and your skill will really pick up
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NK6Q
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Posts: 202




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« Reply #23 on: December 03, 2011, 08:38:35 PM »

I agree- contesting CW speed is different than conversational (ragchew) CW speed.

No way can I maintain a QSO at 35 WPM, but I can copy 35 for a quick callsign, 5nn, check, TU, dit dit.

Certainly two different disciplines.

Bill in Pasadena
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K5CQB
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Posts: 223




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« Reply #24 on: December 04, 2011, 09:40:45 AM »

I really enjoy the contests.  Personally I can only send around 14wpm very accurately, above that it begins to deteriorate.  Working these contests I always fell like my ability to copy increases slightly and soon my sending will increase as well.  Just because the cq'ing station is sending at 35-40 wpm doesn't mean I have too.  I made around 30+ contacts sending at 15wpm.  A few even slowed down for me although it wasn't necessary but it was nice. 
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AD7XN
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Posts: 35




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« Reply #25 on: December 05, 2011, 01:54:07 PM »

I am new to CW and just getting 13 down, knocking on 15 with 18 right in back of 15.  As far as contesting goes I did it in model airplanes (control Line Racing) for 47 years and it takes a lot of your time and is a lot of work and becomes addicting because you are up in the rarafied atmosphere of the best there is.  At 75 I can't bend down to pit or pilot any longer as it is very physical flying with tree other flyers in the same circle on 60 foot lines at up to 130 and used to be 160 MPH.  In any case it took a lot of money to keep doing it just like any contesting event if you want to compete at that level.  But I don't care to contest in any thing these days, and will be content to rag chew only, but just for my own pleasure I will see if I can get to 30 WPM in my head.  If I don't I won't care because  at my age I just want to have fun without the tension that contesting brings. 
So if you want to contest at the top level do so with the mind set that it is beyond the average skill and find the level of contesting that suits you and leave the rest for the experts that have put in time and money to attain that hight stature.  In other words--do your thing and let others do thiers and every one is content.

Matt
AD7XN
 
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PA0BLAH
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Posts: 0




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« Reply #26 on: December 05, 2011, 02:34:11 PM »

I am new to CW and just getting 13 down, knocking on 15 with 18 right in back of 15.  As far as contesting goes I did it in model airplanes (control Line Racing) for 47 years and it takes a lot of your time and is a lot of work and becomes addicting because you are up in the rarafied atmosphere of the best there is. 
I wanted to do that as a kid, I bought "the Hornet" a kit, it never flew. Engine one cylinder diesel running on aether and consumable oil. Difficult to start. Breaking wooden propeller. Weather dependent.
Quote

At 75 I can't bend down to pit or pilot any longer as it is very physical flying with tree other flyers in the same circle on 60 foot lines at up to 130 and used to be 160 MPH. 
You have to turn around and around each 1.6 second one turn and become dizzy.
Quote
In any case it took a lot of money to keep doing it just like any contesting event if you want to compete at that level.  But I don't care to contest in any thing these days, and will be content to rag chew only, but just for my own pleasure I will see if I can get to 30 WPM in my head.  If I don't I won't care because  at my age I just want to have fun without the tension that contesting brings. 
When you are 75 you can expect it takes  5 years 30 minute per day exercising in order to copy 30 wpm solid in your head.

But 15 and 18 is also perfect with a straight key.

Quote
So if you want to contest at the top level do so with the mind set that it is beyond the average skill and find the level of contesting that suits you and leave the rest for the experts that have put in time and money to attain that hight stature.  In other words--do your thing and let others do thiers and every one is content.

Agree for 100%

Bob PAoBLAH
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K0TF
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Posts: 1




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« Reply #27 on: December 11, 2011, 11:10:53 PM »

Look at rufzxp.net to the very fast degrading number of guys and gals able to copy a callsign above 50 wpm, and remember those are topspeeds they once in a year meet or increase due to the fact that at high speeds W0OO and that sort of calls are random generated.


RufzXP http://rufzxp.net/ does not use random generated calls, but rather get actual call-signs from the pool. Its a matter of fact. Most of the top runners in the contest DO use computer receive, similar to RTTY, nowadays if you want to run contest from "super" station, first question you asked, how fast you can type, not how fast you can receive CW. As for slowing down, well stats not favoring slow operators. Percentage-wise, loss of points by wasting time on one, two contacts negligible, comparing to possibility of loosing frequency with all ramifications. Usually stations keep second chair some where 30-50 kHz above the band edge on the second day to pick up plankton. Contests NEVER been fair from the day one, so that argument irrelevant. Thats it folks :-D
« Last Edit: December 11, 2011, 11:16:48 PM by K0TF » Logged
AE4RV
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« Reply #28 on: December 12, 2011, 12:21:53 PM »

"Let's be honest about this. Most ops running higher than 35 WPM are using some sort of decoding software like skimmer, etc. So don't feel inadequate if you can't copy that fast."

I very seriously doubt that. CW decoders are horrible under contest conditions, think about it. They hate weak signals, different speeds, different pitches, pileups. Holding a frequency with a decoder would be a fools errand. Maybe search and pounce...

But as has been said before, if you can do 20 WPM, then you can decode a call sent at 40 if you hear it a few times. That's what I was doing two years ago. Now I can do callsigns at 40 thanks to RuffzXP. It's not even difficult thanks to practice.
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DJ1YFK
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« Reply #29 on: December 13, 2011, 12:53:21 AM »

> Most of the top runners in the contest DO use computer receive [...]

Wrong.

> Most ops running higher than 35 WPM are using some sort of decoding software like skimmer, etc.

Wrong.

AE4RV is absolutely right on.
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