eHam

eHam Forums => CW => Topic started by: AB9NZ on October 02, 2012, 07:37:24 AM



Title: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AB9NZ on October 02, 2012, 07:37:24 AM
 I'm in the autumn of my life (51!) so I doubt I'll outlive being able to find a cw qso. I'm curious, what do you guys think the future holds for Morse telegraphy?
         Tom Bruzan AB9NZ, Mount Prospect Illinois, http://radiotelegrapher.posterous.com/


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: K8AXW on October 02, 2012, 08:06:42 AM
Tom:  If you consider 51 as being in the "autumn" of your life, I guess at 76 I'm into midwinter!  LOL. 

I prowl this CW forum daily and from what I read, CW is not only still alive but still quite vibrant!  I read almost daily the adventures of those who are just starting out with CW, wanting to learn the fastest and best ways to do it.  I also read questions from many who have specific problems and are seeking solutions to them.....because they want to learn CW.

I no longer operate on the weekends because of the contests.  Whenever there is a CW contest the bands are nothing but bedlam.  No.... CW isn't dead yet and as far as I can tell it isn't even sick!



Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AB9NZ on October 02, 2012, 10:04:45 AM
Allen, no doubt the contesters and experienced ops are very dedicated and very busy, and yes lots of folks share their intent to become cw ops on the forums.  Have you logged a brand new operator lately?
   Tom


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: KH6AQ on October 02, 2012, 12:29:57 PM
I run into relatively new CW ops quite often; No-code ops turned CW ops. Often enough that at age 56 I no longer fear having no one to work in the future.


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AB9NZ on October 02, 2012, 01:09:41 PM
Cool, glad to hear it. My experience has been working almost none over the last five years. Extremely rare to work a guy that hasn't been code tested. It seemed when I started out five years ago the "novice' part of 40 had lots of new operators, now I just don't hear 'em anymore the FISTS and SKCC freqs used to be packed too. Maybe it's just me, not looking for slow code as much anymore.
   Best of 73 de Tom ab9nz


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AE4RV on October 02, 2012, 01:45:52 PM
I haven't been very active this year and last year I mostly worked DX and QRP sprints. But the preceding couple of years I was fairly active with domestic CW QSOs and it was not uncommon to work new CW ops, even at 15+WPM. Once I overheard a 17 year old rocking a speed key.

CW is no longer a bitter pill to swallow, now it is an interesting choice and a great mode for those restricted to low power and/or inefficient antennas. A great way to earn some street cred without spending any or much money. New ops are out there.

73, Geoff




Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: PA0BLAH on October 02, 2012, 02:02:36 PM
NO there are not.

You have to distinguish between:

a) old hams compulsory learning the code
b) retired radio officers and military operators
c) east Europeans former communist countries
d) new people in western hemisphere learning the code


To start with d) They announce they are GOING TO learn the code, they are always busy with thinking what they are GOING TO do, but they did not learn perseverance in their sloppy education, they just collecting hurray when they announce their last "going to do" and you never hear something about them when you don't tune in the SSB in order to hear their extremely stupid vocal output.

class c) their government know that in case of weaponed conflict Morse code can be vital, no Internet, no satellites available, they make Morse code exercising a peoples sport, and so a very large crowd is able to conversate in Morse code. Those governments  give excellent performers a grant. So ridiculous when some western RO, like K8AXW,  try to tell they couldn't copy his fast sending, The opposite is and will be the truth. Sleep well Al.

class b) is the bulk present population here in CW forum. That will die out within 5 years. The only thing they can is operating an appliance. I notice that they become in this  (Dutch)country novice operator because they even can't pass the full license requirements within a year of dedicated "study". Beware, and think about  that at sea they couldn't repair a transmitter and a receiver.

class a) dying out, the average ham is over 60 years old in the meantime, so reasonable, a young guy can conversate on Internet and is not amazed to contact a Dutchman via the ether. Present developments in amateur radio are repeaters, packet radio, satellites, D-star and you name it. The point-point connection via the ether without any infrastructure is not recognised as an essential difference.  So what?

It took 100 years, from birth, and now it is going to die fast. Amateur radio is pure appliance operating. $$$ made the license requirements go to zero, Nothing else.
Success with your SSB, I don't like to talk to those stupids

Why bother? It takes only two to tango. (I am #1)


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: W7ASA on October 02, 2012, 07:44:49 PM
I've been talking with one fellow in particular, who just got licensed about a month ago - OR LESS.  He led into that by building his own ELECRAFT kits and today I talked with him over 800 miles away on his indoor antenna - 2 Watts then 15 Watts from his K2. I know that he copied me - really - because I asked him questions and he had the correct, detailed answers.  Good exercise of the code.  Taught himself the Morse code with software while studying for his license(s) and is learning the various unique procedures on the air while having an amazing time with low power CW.  He is just one example.

I bump into quite a few fellows who have been almost inactive after doing other aspects of ham but becoming bored, but avoiding the code up to this point. However, once started in code, they like it a lot.

It's interesting that human nature often rejects what we are 'required' to do, but when the requirement is dropped, says' hmmm, now that I'm not told to learn the Morse code, I'll do it.   ::)

I have to agree with the staff and crew of Maritime Radio Station KSM , that radio telegraphy has (so far) outlived many of it's pallbearers


ZUT DE W7ASA  ..._ ._


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: KB9VLR on October 02, 2012, 08:14:20 PM
Tom,

I'm 30 and have been a ham for 14 of those years. I passed the 5 wpm test just before they were done away with. I'm a new CW op because I never had interest in using the code until I recently bought a Flex-1500 QRP radio. The facet of the hobby that captivates me is the challenge and thrill of learning something new, tinkering, and the reward of getting a project working exactly the way I want it to. Once the challenge is over, the completed project is usually closeted within a few months.

That said, I "relearned" CW after about 12 years of non-use and have been gradually building up to a useful speed. So far this has been the most rewarding, yet least challenging project I've undertaken. It's not difficult to learn and build speed with the code... but it is difficult to maintain the discipline needed to practice EVERY day, and stick with it. Most people my age or younger with their smart phones and texting don't have an attention span long enough to make it through an episode of Jersey Shore, much less learn an "Outdated" language. Have you conversed face to face with a teenager lately? This is the main problem facing CW today. It's ironic to think that with all of the tools available today, code is easier than ever to learn; the limiting factor lies purely within the self discipline and determination of the new op.

If the new op is lucky, they will have enough discipline to make it to about 15 WPM. That is the point where I realized that I had made it, and the sky is the limit. I don't notice the progress daily, but looking over the trend of study on LCWO for the last 3 months, I can see a linear trend of steady improvement. Once that track record is there, sticking with practice is a lot easier to manage.

Adam
KB9VLR



Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: K8AXW on October 02, 2012, 09:53:14 PM
Tom:  I can't answer your question..... I haven't heard one say that "they just got on the air using CW."  You might have a valid observation!!


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AK4YH on October 02, 2012, 10:20:02 PM
I started two weeks ago (Hi Ray :-), never had a voice QSO (haven't built the K2 SSB card yet), right away with Morse code. Why? Because I think it's elegant in it's simplicity and the simplicity of the radios. For me, it's about doing more with less. Honestly, the stuff I hear on VHF can be downright eye-rolling at times. I have yet to hear a stupid rag chew in Morse. I have been struggling with the code and it has been everything but easy. I am glad that people like Ray are willing to help newbies. I would think that given the number of younger people interested in technology, there should be more Hams and more using CW. Unfortunately we also live in a time when quick results are expected. Kids these days have the attention span of a goldfish. I also don't think there is much promotion of the Morse code. After getting my licenses, I received an ARRL starter magazine in the mail. There was nothing about Morse in it, zilch, nada! Even a Technician class Ham can use CW on HF.. Why not remind them of that fact? Nevertheless, there will always be people like me interested in Morse. It's just the nature of the beast. It is simply too useful to die. There is nothing as simple that could replace it. Even without a radio, you can use Morse in many ways if needed. In case of a wide-area emergency, operating complicated radios and computers might not be an option. I can operate my K1 hours per day on a solar-charged small battery, year after year without any other source of power. I can slip my RockMite in my shirt pocket and make thousand-mile contacts with a handful of AA batteries and a piece of wire.. Can't do that with SSB or FM. Sure, many will give up along the way, because it takes efforts and patience, but I have heard beginners on the air, and a few were below the age of 40, especially among the QRP crowd, that is where Morse code might yet flourish. I am certainly going to preach the virtues of Morse code to all the Hams I come across! I sure get a lot of questions when I set-up at a coffee shop, with my Buddistick clamped to my table and start QSOing on the K1 :-)

Gil.


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: ZL1BBW on October 03, 2012, 12:37:33 AM
class b) is the bulk present population here in CW forum. That will die out within 5 years. The only thing they can is operating an appliance. I notice that they become in this  (Dutch)country novice operator because they even can't pass the full license requirements within a year of dedicated "study". Beware, and think about  that at sea they couldn't repair a transmitter and a receiver.

It is nice to see that the people that for many years kept the seaways of cargo open are held in such high regard by the poster PAOBLAH...      Certainly all the RO's that I knew and have met were capable and did on many occasions repair and keep a ships station on the aire in very difficult circumstances.

As to CW long may it live,,, not the fancy high speed rattle dattle operator, but the nice steady fist at 20 - 25 wpm operating an piece of brass that goes up n down and using the grey matter between the headphones as the decoder.

There has been much ado about how fast and quality etc, I have heard some shocking cw not on the ham bands, but who knows what the conditions they were operating under, I know I have judged some operators harshly and have apologised for such, its a bit difficult being key perfect when you have the South Atlantic tearing at you door and a good deal of aircraft cannon fire heading your way.

Oh and just to finish, I have no intention of becoming a silent key in the next 5 years, nor do many of my colleagues.

Have a nice day ;D


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: RENTON481 on October 03, 2012, 05:44:03 AM
From a SWL / monitor's perspective, I think CW is pretty healthy.  When you compare the number of CW stations on the ham bands to the number of ops of other data modes (RTTY, Fax, etc.) CW is doing o.k.




Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: N3LCW on October 03, 2012, 06:51:57 AM
Once the new no-code amateurs learn that CW operators are by far the friendliest, they become eager to learn.  I've run into many new CW operators the past few years, especially QRP.

I don't worry at all about CW dying off.  I'm more concerned about their lack of technical abilities where they can't even take a can of contact cleaner to their equipment to fix a scratchy volume control. (as evident on equipment For Sale postings).

Andy
N3LCW


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AB9NZ on October 03, 2012, 06:54:31 AM
First off I want to say I'm not singing a funeral song for cw. CW is the most badass, superfly, navy seal of all ham radio modes, jeepers my web page is called The Radiotelegrapher. Let me show you where I'm coming from with my query. This is the number of hams before the complete elimination of U.S. code testing. TPNA is tech plus, novice advanced.
 22 February 2007         
                       ----------------         
   Technician              311,851               
   General                 142,031                 
   Amateur Extra           111,464                 
   TPNA                    145,886                 
   Total Individual        711,232 
  Subtract the 311851 no code techs, leaving 399,381 code tested hams, generously spread them over 50 years, and divide them by 365 days per year leaves almost 22 code tested hams coming on board every day. You can see all the holes in my methodology, so the actual number must have been much higher, but then again many of those guys probably went on to work one of the lesser modes. I would suspect that back then it wasn't very unusual to hear someone having their first cw qso.
  Because of the nature of radio waves, the few new guys are heard by a lot of folks, but I don't believe the Tom Sawer effect is actually bringing in that many new ops. I do however believe that the lack of quantity is offset by the quality of our new operators. If lack of numbers causes cw to become more of a niche mode I'm sure it will still be in good hands.
   Just my thoughts, Tom, ab9nz, Mount Prospect, Illinois


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AE4RV on October 03, 2012, 07:05:46 AM
From a SWL / monitor's perspective, I think CW is pretty healthy.  When you compare the number of CW stations on the ham bands to the number of ops of other data modes (RTTY, Fax, etc.) CW is doing o.k.

This.

I think everyone would agree that PSK is a healthy mode, but listen to the bands. There are many more CW QSOs.


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: SM4XUW on October 03, 2012, 10:36:33 AM
Hi all!

I'm 32 years old and been a ham half of my life.
If I check my log 99% of the QSO;s are in CW.
It was the interest of telegraphy as a young teen that led me in to ham radio. I still remember when I first heard about this hobby, and the use of morse code !
This must have been around 1993 to 94.
After a couple of trips to the library to get hold of all the books they had about ham radio and morse code tapes the studying began!

It was hard studying alone and a lot of other things came in the way!! Home work, girls,music etc

But I didn't give up an in 96  I finally got my first licence!
In 1999 it was time to do the military service and I got to be an shortwave radio op handling  mostly CW traffic. ;D

I have had a couple of no code hams close to my age visiting me and they have a general interest in CW and are willing to learn it.
So I think there will be new ops on the bands pounding away on their
keys fore at least 35 to 40 years!

Long live the code ! It's unbeatable 

 
   


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: STAYVERTICAL on October 03, 2012, 03:11:03 PM
I would agree that CW is alive and well today, and should continue that way if the trend continues.

CW has moved from a mode, to an art, in this day and age.
The CW sections of the band are much more crowded than even the PSK31 band segments in my experience.
A few weeks ago, I made a call and spent the next 3 hours working a pileup from all over the globe.
This rarely happens to me on PSK31.

ZL1DAB, so very true.
Radio Officers actually transitioned to Electronics Officers when I was doing my training.
Two years full time, 40 hours a week, with a two week Christmas break.
We were responsible for most of the electronics on board, excepting some engine control systems.
Other than engine control, we would do repairs at sea of everything else.
Radars, Echo sounders, Loran, Direction finder, Shipboard RF distribution system, Lifeboat equipment, and of course the comms gear.

The pressure was sometimes intense.
One time, with a Pilot boarding the vessel, I just managed to get the radar needed for Pilotage repaired.
Failure would have meant losing our spot to enter Incheon harbour since the submarine nets and Locks needed to be navigated.
Radio Officers duties changed as technology advanced, until finally GMDSS took most of us out.
Radio Officers, Flight Engineers, Navigators - all gone due to technology.

But no one knows the future.
As the complexity of our technology increases, the scope for massive failure increases.
One big 1859 type solar flare could bring down the whole artifice.
As a species we are making ourselves occupy a smaller and smaller ecological niche based on high technology doing the brainwork.
If that niche becomes seriously disrupted, we will have to seek other, broader and simpler niche's.
Perhaps CW will be there to fill a need.

73 - Rob
 


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: KD8SAV on October 03, 2012, 08:36:34 PM
I know I like CW because I've got a 100 watt transceiver and an MFJ-1625 Windowsill antenna up only 10 feet.

I've worked a few SSB stations, but SSB is not for weak signal work.

On CW I've been able to work 58 countries since I got back on the air in July, a lot with stations that didn't even move the S meter. CW is great for someone who doesn't have a beam up 40 ft, or even a dipole.

I also chose CW because I was a Navy S/S Operator, but have found over the years I have enjoyed the challenge of working a weak signal at almost noise level, and the concentration it takes to do that.


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: ZL1BBW on October 03, 2012, 09:17:17 PM
I would agree that CW is alive and well today, and should continue that way if the trend continues.


ZL1DAB, so very true.
Radio Officers actually transitioned to Electronics Officers when I was doing my training.
Two years full time, 40 hours a week, with a two week Christmas break.
We were responsible for most of the electronics on board, excepting some engine control systems.
Other than engine control, we would do repairs at sea of everything else.
Radars, Echo sounders, Loran, Direction finder, Shipboard RF distribution system, Lifeboat equipment, and of course the comms gear.

The pressure was sometimes intense.
One time, with a Pilot boarding the vessel, I just managed to get the radar needed for Pilotage repaired.
Failure would have meant losing our spot to enter Incheon harbour since the submarine nets and Locks needed to be navigated.
Radio Officers duties changed as technology advanced, until finally GMDSS took most of us out.
Radio Officers, Flight Engineers, Navigators - all gone due to technology.



73 - Rob
 


When I came to retrain (midlife crisis) my maritime qual's were accepted as degree equivalent (lucky) and this allowed me to do a Post Grad qualification.

I have just got up my 80M dipole, so will be QRV again on the end of 80 and 40.


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: STAYVERTICAL on October 04, 2012, 12:52:16 AM
Quote
When I came to retrain (midlife crisis) my maritime qual's were accepted as degree equivalent (lucky) and this allowed me to do a Post Grad qualification.

I have just got up my 80M dipole, so will be QRV again on the end of 80 and 40.

Excellent on the academic success!
Yes, I bailed out well before the hammer came down as well.
I went into the newly growing computer industry, before microcomputers - it was a great era to be in.
When microcomputers turned the computer industry into a commodity, I again bailed and went into the financial arena.
Then ... bailed again.

The trick is to stay on the crest of the wave, but not be there when it breaks.
Currently retired, but was quite young when I did, so I hope to be QRM on the CW segments for a long time yet!

In some ways CW is like a virus, changing hosts to stay alive.
First it inhabited telegraph lines, jumped to oceanic cables, then to radio transmitters, and now you even find it in TCP/IP packets.
I just remembered! - it has now gone off planet to Mars, in the form of CW tread impressions in the martian soil - spooky!
Like Mark Twain is reputed to have quipped " Reports of my death are greatly exaggerated".

73 - Rob




Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: W1JKA on October 06, 2012, 03:15:53 PM
    My way of keeping CW alive for the future,teach your children or in my case grand children the code(a secret language) then sit back and watch them text with it on their ever present cell phones with their special friends that they have taught it to.It works and who knows,a few may become hams someday.No,cw will not be dying anytime soon,just get off the phone section of the band or try to have a decent cw qso during the weekend cw contest.I think in some countries like Italy it is against the law to get rid of cw anyway HI.


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: N3QE on October 08, 2012, 05:22:41 AM
I'm not that old either (45; been a ham since I was 10) and I find that many of the new CW contesters and DX'ers are not only half my age, they're better at CW than I am or I ever was.

All are capable of casual ragchews but most tend to go strongly for more intense activity like contesting or DX'ing.


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: S51M on October 09, 2012, 12:04:01 PM
Short and very simply CW QSO's without any content and even with help of the PC? No, thanks!


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: M0LEP on October 09, 2012, 04:45:20 PM
For someone new to Morse, short simple QSOs are a good way to start. There's no point trying to sprint before you can crawl...


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: WA8IUR on October 10, 2012, 01:41:17 PM
WILL BE 62 IN A MONTH. STILL USE CW AND SSB. DX IS MORE FUN WITH CW SOMETIMES SINCE YOU ELIMINATE ACCENTS. HOWEVER, BAD FISTS CAN BE WORSE. GOOD LUCK AND WILL LOOK FOR YOU , TIM


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AB9NZ on October 10, 2012, 05:54:09 PM
In this month's QST I counted more than 300 silent keys, DX hams don't live forever either. I sure hope enough new ops are coming on board to hold ground. 73 de Tom, ab9nz


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: N2IW on October 10, 2012, 09:29:44 PM
I'm 36 years old, and a no code Extra, I got my US. license this March. I'm from China and was a 3rd class Ham in China, but never took a code test there. I have tried every wrong way to learn morse, and I think no one learns Morse code longer than me and with no success  ;D ;D ;D  but I never give up, until recently I can finally copy about 17-20wpm, and send at 17 wpm, but never have a CW QSO until today (actually it was yesterday)

I heard HT9H calling CQ at about 25 wpm on 17 meters and he does short 5x9 73 TU kind of QSOs, he was so strong, so although my antenna is just a 4 feet whip on my car, (I use some RG-8x to get it to my apartment)  I decided to give him a call , I decided to send at 13 wpm, with a lot of errors I sent " HT9H de N2IW N2IW k" two seconds later he replied to me at about 15 wpm and we have a very short and exiting QSO ( for me of course  ;) )

Sorry for my crappy English :D


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: AB9NZ on October 11, 2012, 06:38:02 AM
James, your English is fine. I read your biography on that other ham site. You are doing everything right. Anybody can download ham Radio Deluxe, but to make the investment that you have made in this hobby will bring a lifetime of joy. You're another shining example of the high quality people drawn to telegraphy. Welcome to America and welcome to cw.
             Very best of 73 de Tom, AB9NZ


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: NO2A on October 11, 2012, 11:02:23 AM
I can be found anywhere on the cw bands. The old novice portion of 40m has been great for slow speed qso`s. I`m curious what it will be like in 20-30 years. Can you imagine saying,"How`s that old TS-590S of yours doing?"


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: M0LEP on October 11, 2012, 11:18:06 AM
I have tried every wrong way to learn morse, and I think no one learns Morse code longer than me and with no success  ;D ;D ;D

I think I could give you a run for your money there; well over two years this time round, not counting previous failed attempts. One day (soon, hopefully) I'll get there...


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: 2E0OZI on October 11, 2012, 01:42:56 PM
Congratulations James on your first CW QSO - it sounds exactly like my first one!  ;D Stick to it it gets a little easier, though I only have 50 or so.


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: N2IW on October 11, 2012, 08:53:45 PM
James, your English is fine. I read your biography on that other ham site. You are doing everything right. Anybody can download ham Radio Deluxe, but to make the investment that you have made in this hobby will bring a lifetime of joy. You're another shining example of the high quality people drawn to telegraphy. Welcome to America and welcome to cw.
             Very best of 73 de Tom, AB9NZ

Thanks for the encouragement Tom, I really appreciate it !


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: N2IW on October 11, 2012, 08:59:09 PM
Congratulations James on your first CW QSO - it sounds exactly like my first one!  ;D Stick to it it gets a little easier, though I only have 50 or so.

I got my second QSO on 40 meters tonight, it was with a mexico Ham and it even counts for IOTA too, what a thrill!  Although it was another "5nn tu" kind of QSO. My next goal would be a "full size" CW QSO!  :D


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: N2IW on October 11, 2012, 10:03:05 PM
I have tried every wrong way to learn morse, and I think no one learns Morse code longer than me and with no success  ;D ;D ;D

I think I could give you a run for your money there; well over two years this time round, not counting previous failed attempts. One day (soon, hopefully) I'll get there...

Hi Rick, I have memorized the code table (with dot and dash on it) when I was in high school , and I'm 36 now, you do the math! ;D ;D ;D

I read you posts in this thread a few month ago
http://www.eham.net/ehamforum/smf/index.php/topic,82014.90.html

Here's some advise from my not so good experience:

1. At first use a pen or pencil to copy, don't use a computer keyboard until you can copy with pen. maybe this is the second biggest mistake I've ever made in learning Morse Code(First biggest mistake was memorize the code table). Copy with pen will help you connect the code pattern with the letter it self not the key on the keyboard, and it help copy in head too!

2.Practice at lease 30 minutes a day, overlearn is the only way to learn Morse Code! Copy Copy Copy! Wide separated three 10 minutes sessions are better than a 30 minutes session.

3. Don't waste too much time trying to evaluate and get a score! Just copy as much as you can , you will know if your copy is good enough. You can evaluate a two minute session each day if you want to.

4. Try to copy with some noise, I found that I can copy better from my radio than from my computer generated pure code, and better result  in Morse runner than Just Learn Morse(without noise).

5. If you have learned all the characters and numbers and ", . / ?", you may want to copy words, random characters is not so useful for a Ham operator, you can start with 100 most used English words, most software have those.

6.But I believe there is a problem with just copying words, there are some characters that are not used so much, such as "J Z X", so I use Morse Runner, it's a CQ WPX contest emulator , you copy real life call signs(call sign database can be updated) and serial numbers, that I think solve the rare used character problem, and it is so much fun! I use "Single call" mode, you can use "Pile up" or "WPX" mode to practice pile up handling and contest technics     

Most of all, hang in there, practice and have fun!

James


Title: RE: Is there a healthy number of new cw ops?
Post by: M0LEP on October 12, 2012, 05:57:55 AM
Hi Rick, I have memorized the code table (with dot and dash on it) when I was in high school , and I'm 36 now, you do the math! ;D ;D ;D

Oh, I tried to do that over 40 years ago, but, thankfully, never managed to remember it all...

...and I made all those mistakes too.

There's no point in trying to take copy using anything you can't use completely automatically. A good touch-typist could take copy with a keyboard usefully, but mugs like me who type with only a few fingers and need to see the keyboard to do so are far better off with pencil and paper.

I'm not a fan of the Koch "add another character" progression, as it seems designed to help the student grind to a halt, and random groups are unhelpful once punctuation gets mixed in with the set of characters being used.

Callsign traning is more useful than word training, though there's some benefit in training on the common abbreviations encountered in QSOs. QSO files probably make the best off-air training material.

The crystal clear beeps that come out of many Morse training programs are just plain painful. Adding noise is a good idea. However, if you can find suitable activity, listening to real CW traffic beats the lot. Catch, over here, is that most of the traffic is 20wpm or faster, so there's seldom any suitable activity...