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Author Topic: CW alive & well with the Boy Scouts  (Read 1921 times)

Posts: 38

« on: July 03, 2012, 08:45:58 AM »

The Boy Scouts of America have just issued a "Morse Code Interpreter Strip" an official patch from the BSA. This patch joins several other "languages" that are now in the Interpreter Strip category. Spanish, French, Italian, German, Japanese, Arabic, Chinese, Hebrew, Sign language and a few others are now joined with the Morse code as languages for the Scouts to use to earn this patch.

 To earn this Interpreter patch, the Scouts have to carry on a 5 minutes conversation, translate 200 words from the written word, write a letter in the language and translate a 2 minute speech in the language. Morse code is a little different from these other languages so the BSA made some changes from this format for the Morse Code Interpreter Strip.

 To earn the new Morse Code strip, the Scouts must carry on a 5 minute conversation @ 5 WPM. Copy correctly a 2 minute message sent @ 5 WPM and must send a 25 word document @ 5 WPM without any mistakes.

 IMO, this is a great idea the BSA has come up with and this might be the time for the Amateur Radio community of CW OPs to do something positive to help in this worth while cause. I am working with the BSA here in the Houston area, trying to set up some HF stations for the Scouts to use while in their 1 week rotation at BSA camp grounds here in TX. I will be donating 4 hybrid HF radios along with some old straight keys, code practice oscillator, that is sitting here @ my QTH gathering dust and can be put to better use helping a new generation learn the code.

 If other CW OPs have old unused CW equipment sitting around their QTHs, gathering dust, why not donate this equipment to the BSA in your area (so you can see the results, hopefully in person) and get young folks involved in your passion for CW/Amateur radio. Instead of just talking about the demise of CW, lets do something about it and help grow a new "crop" of CW Ops that will keep this great form of communication alive and well, for many years to come.  Smiley This invite does extend to the small percentage of professional high speed CW OPs, whose egos are way overblown and have become legends in their own minds, IMO, can possibly join us mortals in supporting this cause . Wink
« Last Edit: July 03, 2012, 09:27:14 AM by W5INC » Logged

Posts: 2886

« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2012, 02:33:01 PM »

I note that the Interpreter Strip says "Morse Code", not "CW".  Scouts are doing something right!!


Posts: 0

« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2012, 03:24:18 PM »

I note that the Interpreter Strip says "Morse Code", not "CW".  Scouts are doing something right!!

Right,  laughing Haloween cheese icone (  Cheesy  ) propose to the webmaster to change the title of this forum chapter to Morse Code, because CW is continuous wave, that is a sinewave carrier without any further information.

Above that when you say CW is on off keying of a carrier, myriads of codes are possible, one of them in international Morse Code. Hell has to have a place here for sure, and possibly teletype. Furthermore you can use Morse code with frequency shift keying, as was done in spark transmitters  that used the fact that a spark shows a differential negative resistance.

« Last Edit: July 04, 2012, 03:36:28 PM by PA0BLAH » Logged

Posts: 320

« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2012, 06:17:14 AM »

This is great.  I am glad to see it.  Let's see @ 5 wpm a 5 minute conversation will be comprised of about 25 words.  Not going to say much gut the fact is that 25 words of CW is a lot more than many hams can send.  Kudos BSA!

And can we please get off the CW/Morse Code trivial argument. The purpose of communications is to communicate.  And frankly it doesn't matter to me if we call it CW or Morse Code or Telegraphy, we know what the speaker means.  Those who get bogged down in trivial arguments of whether it should be po-tay-to or po-tah-to need to get a real life and take a look their own word usage.  I am sure we can all find technically inappropriate usage yet perfectly clear in meaning of words in our everyday conversations.

73's       Oh wait, 73 means "Best Regards"  so does 73's mean "Best Regardses?"



Posts: 38

« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2012, 09:18:49 AM »

This is great.  I am glad to see it.  Let's see @ 5 wpm a 5 minute conversation will be comprised of about 25 words.  Not going to say much gut the fact is that 25 words of CW is a lot more than many hams can send.  Kudos BSA!

 TNX Tom AE5BQ and the other members who have posted their comments on this thread. Smiley

 The BSA is moving in the right direction on offering the Scouts a chance to earn an award and be recognized for learning the Morse code. I was fortunate enough to have a Elmer W2ZDV (SK) who took the time to educate me in the very fine art of Morse code/CW. I don't have the talent that Buck did in operating CW as he was very prolific and could send/receive code with the best of them. I still remember to this day the amazement I felt when Buck was running his HW-101 station at 40 WPM. It did make a impact on me and I wanted to be as good as my Elmer was.

 I am hoping sometime here in the near future, to be able to have a much better CW operator then myself give a live demonstration to the Scouts. To actually see a Master CW OP at work, might just give some of the younger folks the same amazement I felt when I seen high speed CW work for the first time. You sure can't grow a crop without planting seeds. Just maybe this BSA program will plant some seeds and the AR ranks can add some new OPs to the CW portion of the bands.   Smiley
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