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Author Topic: Low CW activity on the bands, how bad is it?  (Read 5853 times)
AA8TA
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Posts: 33




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« Reply #15 on: July 17, 2017, 10:41:51 AM »

In my local club, there is a guy who gets on the air every morning and he'll rattle along with anybody, at whatever speed they want, for as long as they want.  He has a regular crew that he ”talks" to, mostly at around 30 WPM, but other people sometimes drop in.  He'll even flip over to his straight key, for whatever reason.  But, come the weekend, he's out for blood and you better send the required exchange and nothing else.

There is another guy - a very excellent CW op - who is a bit closer to my operating style, who can copy call signs and exchanges as fast as they come, but does not do well if somebody goes "off script."

I suspect that there are many people like me who look at the contest calendar and think in our minds "these are the times that I will be operating".  Any other time means we do other stuff, whatever that might be (like build better contest antennas).  We enjoy contesting and that is our focus.

There are some like the first guy who are contesters and enjoy doing other on-air things.  There are probably other contesters who get on informal nets with people they know during the week to exchange gossip or talk about the new stacked array they put up.

It's all good.  I think that we all have a license granting us the right to transmit and that is what we should do.  I don't care if it's contesting, rag chewing, meteor scatter, DMR, you name it.  Get on the air and do something.
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TU es 73 de Joe AA8TA
AK4YH
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« Reply #16 on: July 17, 2017, 01:48:51 PM »

I hear plenty of CW here in France on HF; surprisingly none on 2m.
Listen at 9:55: https://youtu.be/VOWTcaUGzW0
Gil.
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VK5EEE
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Posts: 936




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« Reply #17 on: July 19, 2017, 05:22:31 AM »

It's all good.  I think that we all have a license granting us the right to transmit and that is what we should do.  I don't care if it's contesting, rag chewing, meteor scatter, DMR, you name it.  Get on the air and do something.
Indeed!

I hear plenty of CW here in France on HF; surprisingly none on 2m.
Listen at 9:55: https://youtu.be/VOWTcaUGzW0
Gil.
Formidable cher VX! A great video! I also like your Learn Morse Code The Right Way video! I was at first a little questioning of the advice not to write anything down, but later when you twice more mentioned this, you qualified it "if you can", so that's fine! I will spread this video around, and will in time check out your other videos, very nice and interesting, Merci OM. And through your video, I found an interesting site http://www.radiopreppers.com/ with a forum "Morse Code:
The grand daddy of all communication modes might be the best for prepping
" which looking at the topics, may be more interesting than this one!

Yes, it seems that there is still a lot of CW activity in Europe as you show in your video, of course we can't hear 99% of those signals over here. It would I think still be interesting to do a survey on the 40m band (as this is best for national/regional) QSO with modest antenna in Europe, North America, Australia, and Japan, to do a count of how many QSO can be heard e.g. on weekday midday, weekday evening, Sunday morning, Saturday afternoon. To do this a little less subjectively (sensitivity of ears etc) it could be done by any one person using web SDR receivers in each of those locations, and then to compare the results with the population. Of course in some countries the ratio of hams:population is very different from others, and also the ratio of cw:hams, but at least we could get an idea of comparative cw:pop.

I don't think this has been done before, yet it should not be too difficult to do, needs the population totals of each region, and several monitoring sessions. Maybe some day I can get to do it if no one else does it sooner.
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Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever
AA8TA
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Posts: 33




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« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2017, 09:36:01 AM »

Lou: go to the reverse beacon network where you can download several years worth of data that have been collected.  You can then filter by monitors in NA, EU or anywhere else and spotted stations by NA, EU or anywhere else.  Should be fairly easy to de-dup the spotted stations, group them by band and time (say one-hour) slots.

Maybe I'll take a crack at that.  It would be pretty obvious what day of the week it is by peaks in the graphs and whether a big contest was going on.
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TU es 73 de Joe AA8TA
AK4YH
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« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2017, 09:45:10 AM »

Thanks Louis.

Quote
Lou: go to the reverse beacon network where you can download several years worth of data that have been collected.

I was just going to mention the RBN!

This one is good too, about Morse code: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pV1YP6Sj2z0&t=22s

I truly believe there is no better mode that does not require a computer...

Gil.
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VK5EEE
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« Reply #20 on: July 19, 2017, 06:27:22 PM »

Well the RBN is not going to be a good measure for the following main reason: It will only catch well sent CQ calls, not actual QSOs in progress + calls + skeds + nets.
But using a web SDR in each region is the way to do it properly, tuning slowly from one end to the other of the 40m band. Also I'd not want to count contests as their participation with few exceptions is not uniform across the popular regions of amateur radio activity (EU, NAM, EAS, OC).

Gil a great video! I'm surprised it has not had more views. Why CW is the ideal mode for SHTF and survival etc. You are of course right, CW is THE best low-power DX communication mode that does not require a computer. It is also the ONLY mode you can use while burping, farting, eating, or all three, while still maintaining the high standards of CW Gentle-manliness.
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Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever
W3TTT
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Posts: 235




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« Reply #21 on: July 25, 2017, 12:42:03 PM »

VEE -
"...Maybe it can be called the NONTEST instead of CONTEST so that "CQ TEST" can still be a valid way..."

If "Pro" is the opposite of "Con", then is Protest the opposite of Contest?  Cheesy
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VK5EEE
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Posts: 936




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« Reply #22 on: July 25, 2017, 03:08:41 PM »

VEE -
"...Maybe it can be called the NONTEST instead of CONTEST so that "CQ TEST" can still be a valid way..."

If "Pro" is the opposite of "Con", then is Protest the opposite of Contest?  Cheesy
Grin
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Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever
GW3OQK
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Posts: 379




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« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2017, 09:19:27 AM »

If Pro is opposite of Con what is the opposite of Progress?
Apologies in advance, Andrew
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KC4ZGP
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« Reply #24 on: July 26, 2017, 09:54:09 AM »


Regress.

Kraus
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W3TTT
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Posts: 235




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« Reply #25 on: July 26, 2017, 11:12:58 AM »

VEE -
"...Maybe it can be called the NONTEST instead of CONTEST so that "CQ TEST" can still be a valid way..."

If "Pro" is the opposite of "Con", then is Protest the opposite of Contest?  Cheesy
Grin

Not to be political but. . .
"If pro is the opposite of con, then is congress the opposite of progress?" Cheesy
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VK5EEE
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Posts: 936




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« Reply #26 on: July 26, 2017, 03:52:08 PM »

VEE -
"...Maybe it can be called the NONTEST instead of CONTEST so that "CQ TEST" can still be a valid way..."

If "Pro" is the opposite of "Con", then is Protest the opposite of Contest?  Cheesy
Grin

Not to be political but. . .
"If pro is the opposite of con, then is congress the opposite of progress?" Cheesy
Grin and is a CONTEST a test of cons? (cheats)  Grin
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Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever
K7NDE
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Posts: 4




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« Reply #27 on: August 02, 2017, 01:04:29 PM »

Would the CW ham bands be as crowded as they are now during contests if there were no code readers/computers? They say CW is alive and well just listen to the wall to wall stations during a contest. I seriously doubt it. Morse code requirement for a ham license is long gone. If a ham wants to participate in a CW contest and don’t know the code or has no desire to learn then its a no-brainer  just automate your station with a code reader/computers. I know a few hams who have done it. A 5nn TU – quick burst contact is a perfect set-up for code readers and contesting. As much as I don’t like it, who can blame them. The technology is available and getting better, they’re going by the rules and have a license. As far as operating and rag chewing during non-contest times, it is very difficult and tiresome for someone to have a normal contact/rag chew using a code reader especially if the other station is not sending machine perfect CW.  IMO that’s part of the reason the CW bands are not as crowded as before and even sometimes they appear dead during non-contest times. A lot of CW contesters simply don’t know the code well enough and why should they when it’s not required. With that being said I also have worked a few hams on CW who have taken the time and really learned the code and it’s a pleasure to work them and hear their experience.  Unfortunately they are few and far between. When most countries discontinued commercial and military use of morse code the Amateur Radio service naturally followed suit and it took some years but now we’re seeing the results - the true CW man, the ex-ships R/O, the Navy/Coast Guard/Commercial land stations /Army CW operators who were also amateur’s and all the other amateur operators who were required to pass a morse code test to obtain their ticket are now going the way of the spark, landline telegraph ops, horse and buggy, coal….you name it. Hopefully there will always be a few real CW enthusiasts around but it’s apparent to me with the passing of time the trend is downward.     
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OZ8AGB
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« Reply #28 on: August 02, 2017, 01:24:37 PM »

Well then it is no longer a CW contest is it? No CW skills measured or required. Just good computer equipment.
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KC8Y
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Posts: 456




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« Reply #29 on: August 02, 2017, 03:59:30 PM »

Well sorry to kinda disagree with your opinions, BUT I must use, both a keyboard and a computer for CW, because of my rare handicap.

I use my keyboard (for input) to my external keyer AND my computer for deciphering morse code signals.

I can always find CW activity on any HF-band

Have been licensed over 45+ years

Ken KC8Y
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