Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net

   Home   Help Search  
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Learning Morse Code tips  (Read 3407 times)
W4KYR
Member

Posts: 540




Ignore
« on: August 09, 2012, 06:16:19 AM »

Learning Morse Code tips and suggestions

It Sounds Like

I call this part Morse code letters 'sound a likes'.  I first used this when first trying to learn the code. It is taking common meanings and associated it with a character. For me this was a good method for instantly recognizing Morse code.


A = ti DAH
C= CO ca CO la
F = mi ni MAR ket
G = GOV ERN ment
J = the JUM PING JACK
L = the HELL with it
MM = (MM GOOD)
U = is it You
V = win ning it ALL
X = Dum dit tiy DUM
Z = JUST GO zip it
? = did it COME UP with it
4 = (reminded me of an alligator coming out of water)

Add your own for the other characters and/or substitute the above for your own. Go listen to some 20 to 30 WPM code, the letter L sticks out. Every time you hear the letter 'L' at 30 wpm, write it down...good, now you can copy 30 wpm...now you need just a few more characters to go....


Once You Understand The Code

I found practicing on the air is best, much better if you have someone to train with. Back in the day when Morse code was required in order to get on the HF bands, and 5 wpm was required in order to use 10 meters so we used MCW (Modulated CW) on 2 meters FM simplex because we didn't have a 6 meter or 2 meter multimode.

The person I trained with was in the next town and he also trying to get his 5 wpm, the only way to train then was to pick a little used 2 meter simplex frequency and press the PTT button with one hand and send code with a code oscillator up to the microphone. It was awkward to say the least, but it worked.

Eventually we both got the 5 wpm down, and continued to train this time on 10 meters using normal cw. Eventually we both got the 13 wpm after a few tries, and sometime later I got the 20 on my own.

I found listening to W1AW a good resource, but listening to live 25 to 35 wpm QSO's was the better method. The best way was to try to make contacts on CW, once you get going...it kind of falls together.


Copy In Your Head?

I noticed that no matter the speed, I was able to pick out common partial sentences like CQ CQ DE , TNX FER THE CALL, WX IS, NAME IS, QTH IS, RIG IS, SO HW CPY?. As such try to pick out these very common and repetitive partial sentences and phrases. Maybe after a short time, you may not have to write them down. You can copy them in your head at 25 wpm or faster.

This concept of copying in ones head was explained to me a long time ago. Much like we learned to speak and to interpret words 'on the fly' when we first started talking at an early age. We didn't need to write down each letter at a time to interpret what others were saying, we understood what things meant just by the words.


We Learned Words Before We Even Knew How To Write Them Down

It was only after we went to school or taught by or parents that we actually learned the letters, one by one, and how to write them down.  By Kindergarten we already knew how to speak and understand sentences and phrases before we knew how to spell or write the words or phrases.

So according to this concept, we do not need to write down the phrases, just the details that follow the common CW words and sentences. I never did get to the point of being able to copy everything in my head, if I kept up with daily practice and live QSO's after getting my 20...I could have done it.

 Why my interest in CW again? Last time, years ago my interest in CW was just to pass the test. I like the concept of those trail radios like the YouKits/TenTec and would like to get good again on CW and try 'out in the sticks' wilderness radio.


What Is Your Goal?

Since there is no requirement for Morse code anymore, you need to ask yourself what speed you want to get at. What Is Your Goal? And what you intend to do after you reach your goal. Find others who want to learn Morse code and practice on the air live on 10 meters or 6 meters ... and when you get better then go to the main HF bands. Locate others from your local radio club or here on Eham who want to learn Morse or increase their speed.  Schedule some live QSOs and then practice.


Good Luck
Logged

Still using Windows XP Pro.
PA0BLAH
Member

Posts: 0




Ignore
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2012, 07:39:33 AM »

Thanks for your valuable advice,

Did your read

http://www.eham.net/ehamforum/smf/index.php/topic,84019.0.html ?

Another way of learning is not all the characters at once the way you advice, but start with 2 characters, high speed wide spaced in order to prevent dot counting, and when sufficient proficient in decoding 2 characters add a third one.

You don't need to learn first that H is Go to the Hell (X?), or F is Mi Ni Market (whynot M?)

So what do you think of that add-one-at-a-time-character method?

Or the eish5 TMO0 method?

May be the real problem is that it involves all spending leasure time, so you want to learn Morse code because you like that, but after a few weeks you hate spending your leasure time at learning so you stop. Who cares?

Bob
« Last Edit: August 09, 2012, 07:50:24 AM by PA0BLAH » Logged
AB9NZ
Member

Posts: 176




Ignore
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2012, 10:58:49 AM »

   William, Code Quick is a commercial program that uses this technique with great success. It is a much more polished version of what you outline, and uses mnemonics appropriate to each letter. It sends the tones along with the sound a likes so you learn the sound simultaneously. In short order one can learn all the characters and get on the air.
   I got a kick out of this on your profile at that other ham forum "Located 5 miles Northeast of Rabbit Hash, near Utzinger and Bullitsville also pretty close to Taylorsport but not all that far from Hooven, Switzerland and Big Bone Lick." Rather unusual geography.
   Thanks for sharing your thoughts on an alternate method of learning Morse code that teaches the rhythm of each character. There are people on this forum that have tried for months and even up to a couple of years to learn by listening to code at high speed and are bravely still trying. Kinda like going to the Philharmonic to learn to play the violin, you probably need to learn your scales first.
   Very best of 73 folks, de Tom AB9NZ, Mount Prospect, Ill.
Logged
STAYVERTICAL
Member

Posts: 864




Ignore
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2012, 04:32:21 PM »

Remember - the guys who were on ships and wartime ops were trained using very simple methods.
Do not over-complicate learning.

Our brains are adaptive neural networks which work by increasing connections between neurons for perceived patterns.
TRANSLATION: repetitive exposure means we remember.

It may be an urban myth, but I once read that reading morse by sound was actually an accident.
As the story goes, guys who were monitoring the paper tape morse printers clicking learned to read the message without reading the tape.

There are no shortcuts - your brain must be trained to associate a sound with a letter.

Start slow - learn a few characters - put them into words - read the words in a morse sending program, and repeat until all the characters are learned.
Then gradually increase speed  until you are uncomfortable, listen for 5 minutes, and then drop speed - your original speed will seem easier.

Thats really it - its time consuming but not complicated.

Reading in your head and all the other things come later, when you are so comfortable with morse it becomes automatic - a function of years of use.

Be aware that it will take time to train your brain, but if you can learn anything at all, you can learn morse.
I taught myself morse at 15 and can say that any training I received later for shipboard use was no better than what I did myself.
I also saw people with no morse experience at all become trained for seagoing radio officers in less than a year.
There were no tricky systems used, just an old paper tape reader and a grumpy bearded gentleman with a commanding voice.

73 - Rob

Logged
PA0BLAH
Member

Posts: 0




Ignore
« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2012, 05:02:54 AM »

Remember - the guys who were on ships and wartime ops were trained using very simple methods.
Do not over-complicate learning.
There are no shortcuts - your brain must be trained to associate a sound with a letter.
Start slow - learn a few characters - put them into words - read the words in a morse sending program, and repeat until all the characters are learned.
Then gradually increase speed  until you are uncomfortable, listen for 5 minutes, and then drop speed - your original speed will seem easier.
Thats really it - its time consuming but not complicated.

Quite clear, and I agree 100%.
But watching the behavior of other guys in forums, I am willingful to notice,  that means "I believe", that it is 10 to 20 times harder for one then for the other. Don't forget that there was an admission test before admission in code classes, so the result of military code schools can't be used as general rule.


« Last Edit: August 10, 2012, 05:05:07 AM by PA0BLAH » Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!