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Reviews Categories | Keys & Paddles | Finger Tip Tapper Help

Reviews Summary for Finger Tip Tapper
Finger Tip Tapper Reviews: 14 Average rating: 4.7/5 MSRP: $29.95
Description: Iambic key which uses finger tip control rather than a paddle
Product is in production.
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KL7CW Rating: 5/5 Mar 1, 2010 22:49 Send this review to a friend
Great for portable, and possibly for home use  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought my tapper for backpacking and other portable work. It only took about an hour of practice to send 15 - 20 WPM without errors. On the air QSO's at this speed went well, however at higher speeds I tended to make some mistakes. Only time will tell if this is due to the paddle, or my inexperience. I believe at least 25 WPM should be possible.
The paddle works well at home on my desk, however it really shines when I operate outside in the winter in Alaska. I hang a horizontal tapper vertically from my left shirt pocket with a binder clip from an office supply store. I route the cord out of the bottom of my parka. I then unzip my parka approximately 6 inches and reach inside with my right hand to key the tapper. I can operate hours outside in the snow without freezing my fingers! This should be a great pedestrian mobile key. A vertical style tapper could be used inside of a large glove, however, I prefer the pocket mounting. Although I am not yet ready to give up my conventional paddles for home operation, I believe the tapper could be a viable inexpensive paddle for someone new to CW. It would be easy to change over to a conventional paddle in a few years IF they thought it necessary. The tapper is a bit stiff in its operation, so a highspeed cw operator who adjusts his paddles for a very light touch and close space, might find it objectionable. I cut my teeth on a bug 56 years ago, so I think the stiffer action is just fine.
N8DE Rating: 5/5 Dec 15, 2009 07:31 Send this review to a friend
Just like my original idea in the 60's !  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've been sending with a 'fingertip' key 'paddle' since I built my first one in the early 1960's so I wouldn't lose my 'bug-swing'. Mine used relay contacts and duct tape!
The Finger Tip Tapper by N2CAU is great and I have 3 of them ... just in case!
Thanks for putting a good idea in a great package!
Don - N8DE
XE1UFO Rating: 4/5 Aug 6, 2009 08:50 Send this review to a friend
GOOD IDEA  Time owned: more than 12 months
I found that mine required that the taps be very precise and with more force than a normal key. It does work, though!
OE3SGU Rating: 5/5 May 21, 2008 11:12 Send this review to a friend
nice qrp gadget  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The delivery was fast (around 1 week) and I like the idea. It takes some time getting used to but once you mastered it the tapper works fine. In future this one will come along with my FT-817 and the other heavier paddles will stay at home.
KB1OOO Rating: 2/5 Dec 14, 2007 20:09 Send this review to a friend
nice try but you can do better with a plain old computer mouse  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I don't want to come off as overly critical here but I'm compelled to post this review because I've been burned by overly positive reviews in the past. People tend to post a review only if it's positive and that doesn't help products get better.

Anyway, I find that the only good thing about this paddle is its size. Otherwise, here are the problems:

1. The contacts are difficult to use because you really have to press almost directly in the center. Even with the raised plastic buttons, I often miss making contact with the switches.

2. The contact spacing is large and the pressure required is significant which makes sending above 20wpm difficult.

3. Why $30? Sure its much less than most paddles, but this paddle has no better components than a $5 mouse. In fact I've used a mouse and they work much better.

If you need a cheap rugged paddle for field work, then grab an old usb mouse that's lying around (or buy one for $5) and old stereo headphones and take 10mins to make one. Here are some instructions:
M3EPD Rating: 5/5 Sep 20, 2007 03:56 Send this review to a friend
FANTASTIC  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Have had The Finger Tip Tapper all of two days days now.

Ordered it on Friday Afternoon, within one hour got an E Mail from James N2CAU to say it was made and in the post.

Received on Tuesday, 4 days from New Jersey in The States to my Fron Door in Liverpool UK.

Now that's, what I call service.

As for the Key, as a famouse English Comedian use to say "IT'S A CRACKER"

What more can I say, it does what it says on the can.

And for some one like me who is just about to start a CW CLass it's just what The Dr Ordered.

At only $29.00 plus $5.00 Postage and Packing, what more could you ask for.

Try one your self, it may just change the way you send Morse, in the future. .LOL.
N1WST Rating: 5/5 Mar 13, 2007 19:09 Send this review to a friend
I like it a lot  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
First, communication was very good and shipping very fast; I had the device 4 days after ordering. The device is light in weight and the appearance is as described on the web site. The feel of the buttons is very good; only a light touch is required and the stroke is short with a positive closure accompanied by a light "click" sound. I use Bencher iambic paddles otherwise and found the transition easy to the tapper. It took me just less than 15 minutes of sending to reach what I felt was about 75% proficiency but that last 25% is coming more slowly. The iambic function is a little trickier to get down but I can see small improvement with each use. I use mine in my car and have it attached to the console with double stick tape so I only have to reach down along the seat to send. I put the tape on the included clear vinyl envelope (Ferrous metal is hard to find inside the cabin of a modern car.) so I could remove the tapper if desired. I think if you put the tape directly on the tapper, the tapper might be damaged by removal. I also attached the included rubber bumpers to the vinyl, over the switches and this makes it easier to find the buttons "by feel" while driving. My only negative is the mini stereo plug; I would prefer a straight rather than a 90°plug since I'm running the cable with an extension through a small space to the rig in the trunk.
XE1UFO Rating: 5/5 Nov 3, 2006 18:44 Send this review to a friend
WONDERFULL!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I recently ordered the horizontal version of the Finger Tip Tapper, to add to my arsenal of ultra-portable CW keys and paddles. (Hey: I only have about 30 keys in my collection!) Well, I am quite impressed with the Tapper.

Don't be deceived by its simple looks. It is very well made, and comes with its own protective plastic sleave, for storage when not in use.

Though I purchased it originally for use with my QRP+ and my DSW-20, no problems using it on my Icom IC-706MKiiG.

And if you prefer the Dah on the other finger, just turn it 180 degrees.
KI4OJC Rating: 5/5 Apr 11, 2006 08:30 Send this review to a friend
Great QRP accessory  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This is a very fine addition both for a portable/backpack QRP rig and for use back at the base station. You will receive it quickly, and it is customized with your call and name. It is set up to compliment your regular paddle finger "assignments": forefinger is still "dit." Easy to adapt to, and I like this key [or paddle, or whatever it is] on my KX1 better than the Elecraft paddle. I also use it with a Picokeyer on my base rig. Magnetic base, a "no-skid" pad, and little sticky bumpers keep this stable platform in place and your fingers on the "keys." Ingenious design--thinking outside of the box; thanks, James!

Bevin, KI4OJC, Lynchburg, VA, USA
AB5CC Rating: 5/5 Apr 22, 2005 21:47 Send this review to a friend
Really neat key!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I am building a SWL Rockmite and didn't want to carry a set of paddles that are larger than the rig. Also, I didn't want to spend $69.95 which is about 3 times the cost of the rig. Well, the Finger Tip Tapper fits the bill. It comes with your call and name on it. You can even pick the color and orientation (Horizontal or Vertical). I once built a set of paddles from two Radio Shack lever type microswitches. It worked by pressing down with two fingers just like the Tip Tapper. So, there is no learning curve for me. This is an excellent product with very friendly service and fast shipping. Sure, you could build the one with 2 lever type microswitches, but this one weighs about 1/2 ounce and looks cool!
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