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Reviews Categories | Keys & Paddles | Bencher RJ-2 Chrome Hand Key Help

Reviews Summary for Bencher RJ-2 Chrome Hand Key
Bencher RJ-2 Chrome Hand Key Reviews: 19 Average rating: 4.4/5 MSRP: $120.00
Description: Traditional straight key
Product is in production.
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You can write your own review of the Bencher RJ-2 Chrome Hand Key.

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KC7JNJ Rating: 3/5 Jan 18, 2018 18:02 Send this review to a friend
Not as great as it looks  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought the chrome one in 95 when I got General class. I got into CW while getting ready to take my Gen test. Found I liked it. Got this key as I wanted something nice. It is far to heavy springed, very tippy, the knob hangs out past the base to far. I ended up gitting a Nye Speed-X with the navy knob. Much much nicer. Much better balanced.
WF8O Rating: 5/5 Feb 27, 2014 13:02 Send this review to a friend
Great Key!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had this key for a couple years. Only issue was that the set screw for the tension was messed up due to prior owner use of wrong size allen wrench. I called Bencher to order a new screw and they sent the part within two days. Beyond that they charged me neither for the screw nor for the postage!! Great company Great service!!!
AD9Z Rating: 5/5 Aug 4, 2013 17:58 Send this review to a friend
Nice Straight Key!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I like mine! I also have a vibroplex brass racer and I find myself using this key more often. This key is a pleasure to use!
N1MB Rating: 5/5 Dec 17, 2012 18:11 Send this review to a friend
Great Key  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I debated on whether to get this key or the Begali Camelback. I have never tried either key. I took a chance and bought the Bencher RJ-2 from Morse Express (Really Nice folks)and have made several contacts with it. After setting it up initially the key is very crisp and precise. There is no slop either vertical or horizontal with this key. I can work slow when on QRP or relatively fast on QRO without feeling stressed worrying about problems with the key. There are no problems that I have found with this key. I suppose everyone has their own opinion. I highly recommend this American Made Key!! I can't imagine the Begali being any better and the Bencher sells for a lot less.
AC4FS Rating: 5/5 Jan 10, 2010 05:04 Send this review to a friend
Still Like It, still use it  Time owned: more than 12 months
I wrote my first review back in November of 2006. I'm going to be up-front here and say I haven't exactly been burning up the bands that whole time, but when I have, I've used this key.

I still think it has a fairly smooth action, and the "clacking" noise it makes is fairly subdued, compared to other keys I've used. It also holds my settings, and does it's best to make my rusty fist intelligible to others HI.

I do think it is over priced for what you get. This key should be $30 or $40 (American) cheaper than what it generally costs, but I do not regret the expense.

Overall, it is a good solid key that has really great eye-appeal. If you've got $150 to spend on a key, consider this one.
AA8KY Rating: 5/5 Jan 5, 2010 20:06 Send this review to a friend
Very Nice  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I just got my straight key at Christmas. When I went to buy it, I tried the vibroplex first, but when I tried the bencher in chrome, it was smoother. Very ergonomic too. This will last for many years.
KE4MOB Rating: 4/5 Jan 27, 2005 13:06 Send this review to a friend
Better than the RJ-1  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This key is very pretty and has a lot of "eye appeal". The chrome will almost knock your socks off!! My key was purchased used, but is in excellent condition as far as I can tell.

Unfortunately, I wish Bencher had paid a little more the the mechanical details. The key displays a little vertical slop in the mechanism. It is to the point where when the key is properly adjusted for a close gap, you can place your thumb on the back end of the lever and hold it down and still send code while tapping on the knob. Apparently, the pivot journals are bored out a tiny bit oversize. This contributes to the "clacky" sound this key makes as the pivots slightly move up and down in the sockets. This behavior also occurs in my RJ-1. Luckily, it doesn't have the lateral slop problem that the RJ-1 has.

I think Bencher was forced to use the stiff springs to give the feeling of some sort of control over the wobbles. I don't like the allen head adjustments, and wish the base was a little longer.

This key would have been good as a prototype, but on a production key I would have liked to see the pivot ends coned and the stanchions bored and tapped, and the pivots held in place with set screws like on the J-38 and Vibroplexes...or maybe even ball bearings like on the Ameco K-4.

Like I said, this key is beautiful to look's entirely usable, but unfortunately, it's 300% better looking than my Speed-X, but performs 10% worse. It will sit in my collection right next to the RJ-1...I just can't get comfortable with it or its sibling.
KG9HV Rating: 5/5 Dec 26, 2004 06:29 Send this review to a friend
solid hand key  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I had a RJ-1 about 9 years ago and didn't like it
because it was too stiff. When I heard that they
fixed that with a new spring, I thought I'd get
another Bencher straight key. I like this key and
it is very solid. I like the adjustments and the
craftsmanship. I would put this key up against a
GHD costing twice as much.
K2JN Rating: 5/5 Aug 17, 2004 15:41 Send this review to a friend
RJ-1 is nice too...  Time owned: more than 12 months
I own the RJ-1 solid black base (S/N 004679). Action is a bit on the stiff side but I grew to like it. Itís got a solid feel and really nice construction. I especially like the fact that there is a clamp holder on the bottom of the base to store the adjustment wrench.
N1YE Rating: 3/5 Jul 11, 2003 08:34 Send this review to a friend
Looks Great! Operates less great.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I purchased this key after many years of collecting ham gear and had reached the point of not "needing" anything, so I was looking for a premium key. I selected this one because it "matched" the beloved paddles on my desk. I found the action to be way too stiff, heavy, and clumsy. I have come back to it many times trying different adjustments as descibed by other hams, but never seemed to "love" it as my old, ugly, well-used J-38.
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