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Author Topic: The average speed for CWing  (Read 40934 times)
ZL1BBW
Member

Posts: 413




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« Reply #75 on: January 21, 2014, 01:12:54 AM »

OK gentlemen, in order to decide for yourself about the possibly severe distorted signals of N0IU I
made an mp3 file with "the quick brown fox..."  with dashlength and letterspacing 4 times the dot time
starting with 5 wpm and ending with 80 wpm. So decide for yourself.

May be I made an error in this quick not debugged design , please check the timing with an audio program like audacity

http://pa0wv.home.xs4all.nl/test.mp3

73 PA0WV 30

EDIT: the mentioned speeds are based on the dotlength, the streched dashes will make the mentioned speeds lower.
I thought it sounded terrible.
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ex MN Radio Officer, Portishead Radio GKA, BT Radio Amateur Morse Tester.  Licensed as G3YCP ZL1DAB, now taken over my father (sk) call as ZL1BBW.
GW3OQK
Member

Posts: 156




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« Reply #76 on: January 22, 2014, 12:08:47 PM »

Those long gaps make it wierd and unpleasant to listen to.
Andrew
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PA0WV
Member

Posts: 141




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« Reply #77 on: January 22, 2014, 02:12:46 PM »

Those long gaps make it weird and unpleasant to listen to.
Andrew

Mni tks rprts.

Well, the long gaps between the words are not of value, the words itself are 1:4 in timing, made in order to demonstrate the effect at any speed so that readers of this thread know what actually  was talked about..

73 Wim

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Using an appliance without CW is just CB
W3HKK
Member

Posts: 621




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« Reply #78 on: January 23, 2014, 03:02:19 AM »

Rule #1: Match the DX station's speed.

If you are CQing, then you can always go a little faster than your comfort zone, for  DX type contacts.  Most are in the 25-35 wpm range.  The Big Guns go 35+

These days with memory keyers and a speed control, it's a matter of turning the knob Hi Hi.
With a bug its more complicated.  Running the dit setting for 35 wpm makes your calls at 20-25 wpm  awfully rushed, but it works if you compensate with longer spacing ( more think time.)

Good luck.  Just get in there  and listen to the guys having success.  they can teach you what works..    Mainly, Listen to hear who the DX station is working, and on what freq. and if he is  sliding up, down, or replying to stations  on the same freq.

Good luck!
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GW3OQK
Member

Posts: 156




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« Reply #79 on: January 23, 2014, 10:12:19 AM »

OK Wim, the characters with 4:1 spacing are perfectly readable.

I dont try to match any station's speed if its faster than my comfortable sending speed. I send at what's comfortable for me. Contest stations sending at 35 still answer my 24 wpm sent on my straight key.   
Andrew
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WB2QIG
Member

Posts: 25




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« Reply #80 on: February 13, 2014, 03:34:21 PM »

Your speed determines my speed. As fast or SLOOOOW as you wish.

Thank you very much. Getting back into ham radio at 65+ years old I hope to have my station complete by this Spring (its  money available thing). The last time I sent & received CW was over 50 years ago. Now when I listen to CW using a wire stapled to the inside walls as my antenna I still have the piece of paper with all the characters in my hand.

Maxwell
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K7MEM
Member

Posts: 108


WWW

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« Reply #81 on: February 13, 2014, 05:37:33 PM »

Take any morse sending program which gives you a speaker output option (CWtype for example).
Adjust the speed to just a bit more than you can read comfortably.
Then cut and paste in your text and listen...listen... and when you are done ... listen more.

When you are comfortable at that speed, increase the speed by 1 to 2 wpm - you won't even notice the difference.

Repeat until you have reached your target speed.

This is the same method I used in 1999 to pass the Morse test for Extra. I used Morse Academy for generating the Morse tests. The only thing that I added was specific content. I knew that the test was going to be a simulated QSO so all my study material was simulated QSOs. I knew the Morse test was 20 WPM, but I wanted a sizable buffer. So my target speed was 25 WPM. Going from 13 WPM to 25 WPM took me about 6 months. Study time was three times a day for 15 minutes and never study when I was over tired. In the end, I passed the test with 100% copy. General to Extra in a single sitting.
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Martin - K7MEM

http://www.k7mem.com
K8AG
Member

Posts: 352




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« Reply #82 on: February 14, 2014, 09:24:43 AM »

I think the "average" speed for domestic QSOs is closer to 17 WPM (here in the USA, anyway). You'll hear some in the 20s and beyond, you'll occasionally hear some at 5 WPM, but the majority are between 14 and 20.
This is my experience.  There are the speed demons out there for sure.  Contests and DXers generally run 20 to 22.  But 17 or so seems to be the standard casual conversation speed.

73, JP, K8AG
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K9NZ
Member

Posts: 2




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« Reply #83 on: March 01, 2014, 07:16:27 PM »

I am 99% CW and most of my qso are around 22 to 24 wpm, And it easier copy at that speed than say 18 wpm. I make a lot of mistakes at slow speed because the sound of the character
is off, just saying. 32 wpm are my max and I dont want to do that very long in a qso.
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K2ZA
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #84 on: March 04, 2014, 11:00:01 AM »

I recently shelved my paddles for a straight key and found out something interesting about myself...

Working CW with a keyer, I can work 20-22 WPM, but I have to think about copying. Cans on the head, quiet room etc., but getting everything that is sent. When I switched to the hand key, my speed slipped immediately, dropped to 12-15 WPM. In QSO, I don't have to think about anything, the sending flows, the other station's code just seems to pop into my head. The whole process feels, for lack of a better term, more organic. Don't need the headphones, can actually have the local 2 meter repeater conversation on in the background, shack dog can bark, no problems copying at all. Some might think that the slower speed is actually where I'm more "proficient" and that may be, but I wonder if the hand sending is using different neural pathways with a side effect effect on receive?

Anybody with an fMRI, radio-opaque dye, and a research grant want to find out?  Smiley

73 de John K2ZA
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N4OI
Member

Posts: 214




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« Reply #85 on: March 04, 2014, 07:50:57 PM »

I recently shelved my paddles for a straight key and found out something interesting about myself...

Working CW with a keyer, I can work 20-22 WPM, but I have to think about copying. Cans on the head, quiet room etc., but getting everything that is sent. When I switched to the hand key, my speed slipped immediately, dropped to 12-15 WPM. In QSO, I don't have to think about anything, the sending flows, the other station's code just seems to pop into my head. The whole process feels, for lack of a better term, more organic. Don't need the headphones, can actually have the local 2 meter repeater conversation on in the background, shack dog can bark, no problems copying at all. Some might think that the slower speed is actually where I'm more "proficient" and that may be, but I wonder if the hand sending is using different neural pathways with a side effect effect on receive?

Anybody with an fMRI, radio-opaque dye, and a research grant want to find out?  Smiley

73 de John K2ZA

Don't know about any new-rail pathways...  but maybe at this stage it is just easier for you to copy at those slower straight key speeds?  If so, I suggest you keep challenging yourself with that iambic paddle and keyer until you achieve that level of proficiency at higher and higher speeds.... and not revert back to slow and comfortable.  You will be glad in the long run...   Just saying'

73
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WB5JWI
Member

Posts: 10




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« Reply #86 on: March 05, 2014, 08:49:47 AM »

Interesting thread and comments. I am a member of SKCC and don't really use a keyer at all. I like bugs and straight keys and I can comfortably do 25 WPM with 30 in a pinch. Most contest and DXpeditions are of the "TU 599 K" type so even at high speeds I listen till I have the call correct and then start calling.

Within SKCC we have a full range. I was a first ever QSO for a young lady at about 3 WPM. We have quite a few at 10 or less. Anything between about 15 and 20 is quite comfortable. Really slow is a little work. It can become the 'e, no a, no w, no j, no 1' syndrome but I have never met a club member who would not or did not QRS to the others speed, usually without asking. 

We have some very tolerant EU ops who helped a lot when I first got back into CW. I suspect the "average speed" for a contest/DX is around 30 but for rag-chews I would guess 18 plus or minus a few.

Any new folks who want on-air practice (highly recommend it) should also check out FISTS (although Nancy's recent passing will slow that down for a while) and SKCC. Good folks hang out there.
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K2ZA
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #87 on: March 05, 2014, 09:37:24 AM »


 If so, I suggest you keep challenging yourself with that iambic paddle and keyer until you achieve that level of proficiency at higher and higher speeds.... and not revert back to slow and comfortable.  You will be glad in the long run...   Just saying'


Actually, I am challenging myself, just not in the way you might think. I also gave up computer logging, LoTW, eQSL, and digital modes in favor of a paper log and snail mailing real QSL cards. I work in high tech all day, every day (programmer) and want to add more "human touch" aspects to my radio activities. Saving pennies in my radio fund for a bug, just want to get much better with hand sent morse before I add that to the mix. Sold off my TS-590s in favor of a simpler radio that I can maintain (Elecraft K2) and I've been spending more time learning to bread board and scratch build with an eye to eventually having a completely home-brew multiband station.

Obviously, it's not for everybody, but whatever blows up your kilt  Wink

K2ZA
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W9MIC
Member

Posts: 5




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« Reply #88 on: March 09, 2014, 08:00:35 PM »

The answer is 23.4 wpm.

That's the average wpm of all the CW QSOs that were captured at http://www.reversebeacon.net during a 3 day sample that I downloaded.

Mike
W9MIC
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W9MIC
Member

Posts: 5




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« Reply #89 on: March 16, 2014, 08:09:39 AM »

For what its worth, I downloaded a larger sample (the entire month of January 2014) and computed a few stats and a chart regarding the observed CW speed on the Reverse Beacon Network (RBN).

METHODOLOGY

RBN recorded 8.4 million CW observations in the month of January. However there is a lot of redundant data in this sample. Multiple CWskimmers might observe the same QSO and since the RBN is a collection of data for each 1 minute interval, the same QSO might be recorded in the database several times. I tried to eliminate this redundant data that would skew the numbers. My efforts brought the number of "unique" observations down to 1.3 million CW observations.

STATS

Average CW Speed = 24.5 wpm
Standard Deviation = 5.9 wpm
Min = 1 wpm
Max = 68 wpm

Based on the RBN observations and my meager attempt to eliminate data redundancy, these stats are telling us is that about 70% of all QSOs are occurring between 19 – 30 wpm.

If you are operating above 30 wpm you are in the top 15% of observed QSOs.

If you are operating above 36 wpm, you are in the top 2% of observed QSOs.

PRECISION vs ACCURACY

While these stats might be precise I don't think they are any more accurate than the pearls of wisdom that the experienced CW operators on this thread have already shared with us. I believe these stats are skewed based on the volume of contest operator data points in the RBN database vs rag chew data points.



"Statistics lie and liars use statistics"

Mike
W9MIC
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