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Author Topic: Advice wanted: Learning CW , key with some limitations  (Read 1350 times)
AB1JZ
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Posts: 5




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« on: July 22, 2010, 04:12:05 AM »

This winter, would like to learn CW.  hands are now marginal typing capacity, ears long term moderate loss, @2k worst at 60db.
rt thumb no longer in line (90degrees to palm)    suggestions on key type, and esp., CW instruction method/course.

I was highly impressed with the Ham Test On Line interactive course:  a similar course combining both audio and visual (flashing light) would seem to be a solution.  Blind can work CW audio, deaf could work CW visual?

73's
AB1JZ
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AA4N
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Posts: 109




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« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2010, 08:11:47 AM »

As far as hardware goes, if you have some motion limitations, I think a single lever paddle and keyer would be a good choice.   An iambic paddle can require even less motion, but is a bit more complex.

How to learn?   If you like the computer software method, I think the G4FON software is quite good.  I also like the old fashioned method, reading road signs to yourself in morse and such.

I think the most important part of learning the code is to use it.    Get on the air and start making QSO's as soon as you can remember most of the letters.  Go slow, make mistakes, embarrass yourself.   It's all part of the experience.   I think too many folks make a career out of perfecting the code before they take it to the airwaves.   There's not much fun in practicing by yourself.   Turn on the radio and talk to some folks....    really slowly....   

good luck and 73
mike AA4N
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WB2WIK
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Posts: 20574




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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2010, 10:26:21 AM »

You can "tune in" CW at any pitch you wish (until the receiver's IF filter rolls everything off).  I'd never listen to code at 2kHz, that's annoyingly high.

Most of us listen at about 600-700 Hz, maybe 1kHz on the high side and 300 Hz on the low.  But if you use a receiver, you can just tune in to almost any old pitch that sounds good to you.

Unless you have total hearing loss, I doubt "hearing" the code will be much of an issue.  Use headphones and adjust both pitch and volume to whatever works. Smiley

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W7ETA
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Posts: 2528




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« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2010, 10:01:45 PM »

I have inverted Vee shaped hearing in both ears.  When I tune in a CW or SSB signal I tune both in on the high side.  For CW its around 1100 cycles; one ear is only down 8-10 db while the other ear is down around 50db.  I use a hearing aide in one ear, open baffle head phones that fit over my behind the ear hearing aide.  With my hearing aide, I tune the CW note so that it sounds about the same in both ears.

In essence, both of my ears have built in CW filters.

I suppose I could find a cheap hearing aide that can be "programed" to peak the 1000 cycle tone and attenuate all sound above and below 1000 cycles and just use that ear for CW.

You can play around with G4FON's software to find the CW tone you hear the best.  If worst comes to worst, you can always QLF--HI hi--send with your left foot.

73
Bob
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