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Author Topic: Wire and Audio Jack for CW Rig  (Read 421 times)
K5RFF
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Posts: 38




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« on: April 28, 2006, 06:11:46 PM »

I am learning CW and need some advice.

1.  What wire should I use between the key and the transceiver (or practice oscillator)?  2-conductor 18 gauge speaker wire?  2-conductor 16 gauge speaker wire?  2-conductor appliance cord?

2.  Does anyone have a favorite length?  Say 3 feet?

3.  Who makes a good 1/4" phone plug that I can attach wires to?  I bought RadioShack 1/4" Phone Plugs (you have to buy 2 to an enclosed plastic package) and I am very disappointed because the metal inside the removable plastic body is very flimsy and there are no screws to attach the wire.

73, de K5RFF Ray



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AI4NS
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Posts: 320


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« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2006, 08:19:21 PM »

I use shielded wire on mine. Less chance of getting RF back in to the rig. I just bought a premade cable at Radio Shack that had a 1/4in jack on it, cut the other end, and attached the wires to my keyer. On solid state rigs the key circuit is low voltage, so most any wire will work. If you use an older boat anchor, that is another story. I made my cables about 3 ft. That is a good length to be able to use the keyer without too much or too little cable.

Mike
AI4NS
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VA7CPC
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Posts: 2354




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« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2006, 05:28:11 PM »

Solder the wires in place, and fill the plug body with silicone sealant before you assemble it.  

The silicone will give you protection against oxidation and strain relief.

You'll have to destroy it to get it apart, but phone jacks are pretty cheap.
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KD8BVJ
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Posts: 184




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« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2006, 04:48:08 PM »

This is a good question. The RS connectors are usable but just barely.
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AB9LZ
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Posts: 198




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« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2006, 09:02:26 PM »

I ...uh.."liberated" one of my wifes high end electric guitar cables. Works perfectly.
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KD8BVJ
Member

Posts: 184




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« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2006, 11:20:28 AM »

Thats an idea!! I will look in a Music Store.


      Thanks
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KD8BVJ
Member

Posts: 184




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« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2006, 09:05:47 AM »

Mark you are right. I bought a Fender 3ft patch cord at the local Music store. It worked out great. I cut one end off and carfully fashioned it to connect to my Kent Straight key. It looks great. I wish I had bought the 6ft cord though!!

    Thanks Again!!
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