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Author Topic: Advice on slowing my sending down  (Read 5442 times)
G7MRV
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« on: January 29, 2012, 03:43:50 AM »

Im learning morse, as i have been on and off for years. Im now going to make a concerted effort to get on air.

I have a slight problem - i can send much much faster than i can copy. In a QSO, this causes a problem as the other station thinks i can copy at that speed! My actual copy speed is about 8wpm, but i can send at 15wpm or more.

Does anyone have any advice on how to slow down my sending? I seem to find this hard to do. I use a straight key (either a Kent pump or an ex-WD WT8)
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N9GXA
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« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2012, 07:12:09 AM »

  I'm not sure what to suggest for a straight key, but I use an iambic setup and adjust the keyer's speed to a bit slower than I can copy. I suppose it's a forced restriction. It ends up serving two purposes: Some ops return my CQ at a speed faster than I sent which ends up being a blessing as it pushes me to copy faster (and I don't feel bad if I can't copy all as the other gent took it upon him/herself to sent faster initially) and it's a confident booster if they return at the speed I sent because it is really easy to copy.

  Just enjoy no matter how it works out for you.

73 - Paui - N9GXA
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PA0KDW
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« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2012, 08:56:04 AM »

The opposite happens also.

I am not using paddles, only a straight key and 15 to 20 wpm as a max speed. But I trained to copy QRQ with pretty good success in order to recover my speed before I was going QRT.
Copying machine generated plain text by head faster then a lot of paddlers can generate.

However, when I answer a QRQ cq they nearly always come back with my speed, and sometimes, probably due to thinking
"When you answer my QRQ CQ you can't expect me going QRS" they proceed QRq and obviously think that I am decoding with some computer based device that nowadays are available when they find out I copy their msgs solid.

However (I did not try that myself): You can ask for QRQ, hi.

« Last Edit: January 29, 2012, 09:00:55 AM by PA0KDW » Logged
K8AXW
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« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2012, 09:21:13 AM »

MRV:  This is a common problem.  You can send yourself code at 15WPM because you know what you are sending.  So, basically, you're not "copying" what you are sending.

Sending speed is something I don't recall seeing addressed here on the CW Forum but the bottom line to this problem is control!

You know what your receive speed is so you need to force yourself to slow down the key to that speed.

I have a similar problem.... whenever I slow my keyer down for a QRS operator I have force myself to slow down the paddles to send good code.  It's difficult. 

As with copying code, there is no easy way to accomplish good sending, rather it is accurate character length, spacing or speed; except forced control by paying close attention to how you are sending as well as what you are sending.

Good luck.
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AA4PB
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« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2012, 11:12:42 AM »

An Navy Chief code instructor told us that you can't send "good" code faster than you can receive. You only think you can because you are not having to copy your own code.

If you want a challenge, hook your key or keyer up to a computer and see how well it copies your hand sent code. If it displays a bunch of run together words then your spacing isn't correct.

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G7MRV
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« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2012, 12:34:11 PM »

Ive had my practice oscillator sending into the PC, using CWGet, and my sent code is quite good! I was originally taught by a RN submarine comms officer many years ago.

If only my copy was as good...
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KE3WD
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« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2012, 01:38:07 PM »

Why not hit the woodshed and increase your copy speed to 15? 

Plenty of software choices available for that...


73
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LB3KB
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« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2012, 02:28:04 PM »

Get a good Morse code training program and relearn the code at the speed you want to operate at.  Use Koch's method, i.e. start with two characters and add a character as soon as you score 90% or better.  You should be able to progress quickly as you already know all the characters - but don't add more than one character at a time anyway.

73
LB3KB Sigurd
Just Learn Morse Code
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AE5QB
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« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2012, 02:30:15 PM »

I am learning also.  I can copy solid at about 12 words per minute and can send much faster.  I learned using the "full character speed/slow character spacing method," I think that is the Koch method.  I don't know if this would be considered appropriate or not but to emulate this process on the straight key I just ever so slightly lift my fingers off the key to create a slight pause and increase the spacing between characters.  When I finish a character I just roll my wrist/arm to the right until it just lifts my fingers off the key.  When I get in a rhythm, this method makes the inter-character spacing pretty consistent while the character speed remains up around 13-15 wpm.  If I want to slow down a little more, I just pause a little longer at the top of the roll.  To slow down the inter-word spacing, I just set the breakin delay to what I want in the delay.  After I finish a word I just pause until the relay drops and then go on with my next word.  I know this is not the proper way to use breakin but most of us newbies to CW are too nervous and focused on sending our message rather than listening between characters for responses.  Whether this is technically correct or not, I don't know, but it seems to work for me.  I usually get positive comments about my fist and ability to read my code so I guess it must be working to some degree. While getting up to speed is a noble goal, it doesn't happen overnight.  Get on the air where you are at now.  If you go too fast and the other end replies too fast just send, "Sry, pls QRS."  Hang around 7.112-7.118 and I'll be happy to work you.  So will a large number of hams. There are some really nice and patient folks who hang out there just to help us newbies.  It never fails that I hear what I think is a newbie calling CQ around 8-10 words per minute only to find out it is an advanced or extra class ham with decades of CW experience.  They really are a bunch of nice folks who will encourage you and will send as slowly as necessary to help you out.  My first 25 CW QSO's were all made in that area of the dial.  Have fun and good luck.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2012, 02:32:58 PM by AE5QB » Logged
LB3KB
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« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2012, 03:30:04 PM »

I learned using the "full character speed/slow character spacing method," I think that is the Koch method.

That's not Koch's method, it's Farnsworth timing.  You should aim to get rid of Farnsworth once you master all the characters, i.e. use standard timing.


73
LB3KB Sigurd
Just Learn Morse Code
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WX7G
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« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2012, 07:15:59 AM »

If you like sending letters at 15 wpm go ahead. Increase the spacing to slow things down to 8 wpm.
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W8JX
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« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2012, 08:28:00 AM »

An Navy Chief code instructor told us that you can't send "good" code faster than you can receive. You only think you can because you are not having to copy your own code.

I do not agree. I never had a problem with send speed or accuracy. When I started in 1969 I built up send speed faster than receive. Converting text or thought to code is apparently simpler and easier to learn than listening to code, decoding it and writing it down on learning curve. When my dad was a radio operator during end of WW2 they taught him to used a typewriter to copy with.
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #12 on: January 31, 2012, 08:00:43 AM »

Easy to slow down, perfectly:

1.  Use paddles and learn to send with an electronic keyer (almost all modern rigs have one built in, older rigs might need an external keyer)

2.  Once you're doing that, turn the SPEED control knob to the left until it's the slow speed you want.

Pretty easy. Wink
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PA0BLAH
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« Reply #13 on: January 31, 2012, 11:16:56 AM »

There is no rule that both stations in QSO should use the same speed.

Hence the ideal speed is in each direction, the lowest of the speeds of the two: the max speed the sender can produce and the max speed the receiver is able to copy solid.

So when your 16 wpm is a speed your QSO partner can copy, he probably can, fine use that, and to prevent he is running above your 8 wpm limit sent with your 16 wpm pse QRS 8 wpm. That all.

He will sent at 8 and you can sent at 16, sweet 16.

Bob 0% ob
« Last Edit: January 31, 2012, 11:20:12 AM by PA0BLAH » Logged
K8AG
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« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2012, 09:04:19 AM »

Make some of your own practice tapes "digital recordings".  You can simply send backward text from a book or magazine.  Then copy your own fist.  You can use the book or magazine to check your accuracy.  This is a way to increase your listening speed while checking your sending quality and syncing your send and receive speed.

My 2 cents.

73, JP, K8AG
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