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Author Topic: Bench or Table Height For CW Operation  (Read 4008 times)
TANAKASAN
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Posts: 933




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« on: October 01, 2013, 08:28:46 AM »

Suppose I was building a custom desk for a ham radio station where the main mode was CW. What is the ideal height for the desk surface above floor level?

Tanakasan
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WB6BYU
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Posts: 13039




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« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2013, 10:18:34 AM »

Start with the chair - the seat should be high enough that your feet are comfortably flat
on the floor while sitting.  This may take some adjustment - the guidelines for office ergonomics
may be a good place to start.

If you are designing for a variety of operators, an adjustable office chair would be a good
choice, along with an adjustable footrest for the shorter ones whose feet can't reach the floor.

Once you get a comfortable chair height, the desk should be high enough to clear your knees
and so you can rest your elbow on the top surface a bit to your side, without hunching or
drooping your shoulders.  A foam pad under the elbow will provide a bit of accommodation for
those with shorter arms.

This assumes, of course, that you normally rest your arm on the table while sending with a
keyer.  I find this most comfortable for either a keyer or a straight key.  The Russians, however
prefer to bolt their key to the edge of the table and operate it with the elbow below the
table top, using the whole arm to work the key.  In that case you may have to lower your
chair or raise the table, but, while I have watched them send 30WPM perfect code on a straight
key this way, I can't claim to be an expert on the method.

My desktop is ~74cm from the floor, which is pretty comfortable for a height of 186cm.  But my
chair is a bit low for comfort - another couple cm higher might be better for me.
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TANAKASAN
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Posts: 933




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« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2013, 09:55:22 AM »

That makes it 29 inches +/- the fiddle factor, any more estimates for the perfect station desk?

When sending straight key I was always taught to grasp the knob of the key and keep my arm and elbow off the desk but when using a bug I'm much more relaxed as I like to ragchew. Thanks for the tip about the chair.

Tanakasan
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