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Author Topic: Newbie Question  (Read 1821 times)
N7NSL
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Posts: 8




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« on: September 12, 2016, 03:57:54 PM »

I find a lot of operators using 'BK' and not sure why.  It seems that 'K' works just great and 'BT' does a great job also.  So.....when should we use 'BK' and why!

He Who Wonders

Ed, N7NSL
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VK4FFAB
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« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2016, 05:43:09 PM »

I find a lot of operators using 'BK' and not sure why.  It seems that 'K' works just great and 'BT' does a great job also.  So.....when should we use 'BK' and why!

He Who Wonders

Ed, N7NSL

Essentially the same thing, K is a general turn over and BK is a back to you break. And just to confuse matters more, the really fast guys running QSK often do not use turn overs at all.
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K7MH
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« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2016, 06:06:09 PM »

K is usually used at the formal end of a transmission where you have used the callsigns involved, something like;
HW CPY? N7NSL DE K7MH K

BK is mostly used as a quick break or turn over sort of mid stream like;

WHAT IS UR QTH? BK

QTH IS SEATTLE WA BK

And then it is back to op that asked.

« Last Edit: September 12, 2016, 06:11:07 PM by K7MH » Logged
VK5EEE
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Posts: 622




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« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2016, 06:19:08 PM »

As K7MH said, that is the way to use it in Amateur Radio. The non-amateur services often had to and fro and not giving call sign every time and just K but in amateur radio as the habit is generally to give call sign and beginning and end of each over, so as to lessen the impact of the "unexpected" on the other operator if you want to omit your call sign exchange just send BK. BK is also used to break into an existing QSO, which you are free to do so long as an over did not end with "KN" = ONLY the station I mentioned to transmit and NO-one else :-) The use of BK in the MIDDLE of a QSO as an abbreviation for e.g. back, is therefore a NO-NO just as the use of HI is a no-no to say "Hi"!
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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: 346




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« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2016, 01:58:00 AM »

Ed, I rarely use BK, but do use K after a question. "QTH? K" Answer "SWANSEA K".

Using BK I expect it to be a quick exchange as above, but I notice some operators drag out their reply with their call sign. "QTH? BK" Answer "BK de GW3OQK/P QTH here is Swansea Swansea N7NSL de GW3OQK/P KN"

KN is an ending I never use because K does the job and nobody has ever jumped in calling me during a qso. BT is written "=" and separates parts or subjects in the transmission. I'm an old-timer ex professional, I was a newbie in 1958. Well done coming on CW, 73, Andrew

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KD8IIC
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Posts: 499




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« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2016, 04:08:16 AM »

 Hello Ed and welcome aboard. CW is a great way to make new friends on the air.
 I too have noticed this phenomenon in this past two years and getting more prevalent.
 Myself, I just do it like I heard it done back in the 80's when I very first learned Morse and could copy
 somewhat; K at the end and an R on reply. No One back then used 'BK' or 'BTU' in place of K or R.
 I think this habit has its' roots with a certain popular straight key oriented CW club. Seems every member
 has this habit formed in their QSO procedure. Doesn't matter to me but personally I think it's bad form.
 VY 73. lane  Smiley
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K7IN
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« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2016, 10:16:44 PM »

I find a lot of operators using 'BK' and not sure why.  It seems that 'K' works just great and 'BT' does a great job also.  So.....when should we use 'BK' and why!

The "BK" is normally used after asking a question in CW and allows for send/receive exchange without sending call signs.  It is mostly used as a 'short-cut' during a QSO inside of the 10-minute ID rule.  At least, that is how I used it for over 40 years. Grin

Hope that helps...

73, Paul - K7IN
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VK5EEE
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« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2016, 03:03:25 AM »

I find a lot of operators using 'BK' and not sure why.  It seems that 'K' works just great and 'BT' does a great job also.  So.....when should we use 'BK' and why!

The "BK" is normally used after asking a question in CW and allows for send/receive exchange without sending call signs.  It is mostly used as a 'short-cut' during a QSO inside of the 10-minute ID rule.  At least, that is how I used it for over 40 years. Grin

Hope that helps...

73, Paul - K7IN
That certainly helps Paul, as I have heard BK being used all along in the 35 years I've been on air, so it certainly isn't something new. I agree that is exactly how we used it back then and still use it now. I agree that it may be more prevalent these days because in the old days we pretty much sent our callsigns at the beginning and end of each over.

But these days like all things, everyone is in a hurry, less is more, and I even hear CQ calls that don't end with ANYTHING but the call sign. Even it is getting very prevalent a very bad operating practice that people answer a CQ without sending the other persons call sign AT ALL sometimes even for the entire QSO! That is in my book very bad and also rude, and it is for most licenses illegal as you must send the call sign of the station you are transmitting to at the very start of the contact, then at least once every 10 minutes, and your callsign again at the end of the communication.

So I put a notice on my QRZ page explaining why I'm sometimes not going to answer weak DX calls from anyone who calls with only their callsign and why I like to hear mine, not least to know a) the station is calling me and not in some silly big split pile up again and so I don't waste my time sending an over and then there is nothing (has happened several times before), b) I know the other station copied my callsign correctly and not VK5EE as is so often the case, etc.

I honestly think those types of poor practice are much more serious in their impact and severity than the use of BK or not. Naturally in QRQ High Speed Telegraphy we don't use BK normally we just use full QSK and like in a normal voice conversation we just to and fro anytime the other hits the key.  But I do agree that saying BK TO U is bad, especially in QRS, as soon as I hear BK I'm reaching for my key but the other isn't finished :-)
« Last Edit: September 16, 2016, 03:06:30 AM by VK5EEE » Logged

Long Live Real Human CW and wishing you many happy CW QSO - 77 - CW Forever
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