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Reviews Categories | Keys & Paddles | Ameco K-4 Help

Reviews Summary for Ameco K-4
Ameco K-4 Reviews: 12 Average rating: 4.5/5 MSRP: $16.95
Description: High quality key with polished brass base, shorting bar, 1/8" silver contacts. Easily adjustable contact spacing and spring tension. Ball bearing design.
Product is in production.
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AC2JB Rating: 4/5 Sep 20, 2015 10:29 Send this review to a friend
Replaced ball bearing with sealed bearing  Time owned: months
I've had a K4 for years but the loose ball bearings fell out of it and were lost.
I went to a hobby store and found a tiny high quality sealed ball bearing unit that I was able to press fit (with slight oversize drilling of the k4 bearing cups)
I took out maybe a few thousands of an inch of metal from the bearing cups and the hobby bearings pressed in perfectly.
The key works exceptionally well with the better bearings and a resized/new spring.
Try out the modification! The bearings were a little over a dollar each.
A great old time key, especially so with the new bearings!
Jeff, AC2JB
AC0CW Rating: 3/5 Mar 25, 2012 19:05 Send this review to a friend
Fair key  Time owned: more than 12 months
The K4 I have was given to me by a fellow ham. My main complaint is that the action is stiff. The spring tension, even with the tensioning screw backed all the way out, is too stiff for me to send comfortably. I tend to prefer sending with a light touch.

The K4 is the key on the left in the picture.
AE5OV Rating: 4/5 Mar 21, 2012 14:12 Send this review to a friend
Very good key.  Time owned: more than 12 months
My friend bought me this key at a hamfest in 1996 while I was taking my General Class test. I have used it ever since. Very durable since I got it used and who knows who had it before me? It is the only straight key I own, and has never given me any trouble. I used it almost daily from 1996-1997 while stationed in Korea.
KC9GUZ Rating: 5/5 Jul 27, 2007 19:31 Send this review to a friend
Nice little key!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought one last year to help me to pass the code test to get my General(i used it to practice sending CW) and i have also used it on the air. Its actually a nice little key! Well made and solid feeling. But, as of late it has been replaced by a more comfortable to the wrist bug type key, but it still gets used once in a while whenever i feel like sending some straight key CW!
K4LD Rating: 5/5 Apr 13, 2007 19:48 Send this review to a friend
Great!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought this the day after I passed my CW exam, and it is great. I wired it up and it works great. I am planning on buying a QRP CW rig and plan on buying another.
AF4KK Rating: 5/5 Feb 2, 2005 08:25 Send this review to a friend
Works very well!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Like the previous reviews have said, it's a great little key at a great little price. I installed one in my car back in 1996 and it's been doing well ever since. I have in attacthed to a flexible "neck" mount and when I rest my hand on my car's automatic transmission shift lever, it makes a perfect way to do some strraight key!
KU4UV Rating: 4/5 Feb 2, 2005 05:45 Send this review to a friend
Good Basic Key for new CW ops  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought this key about 6 years ago to use with a 10 meter transceiver after I got my General license. I have recently started getting into CW operating more, and I use the key with my Icom 730 transceiver. This key sells for around $20, and it is great deal at that price for a new ham who would like to practice CW with a code oscillator, or get on the air after having learned the code. I mounted the ket on a wooden board, and it works great on my desk with my transceiver. I also recently built the Ameco code practice oscillator, and it is great too. This is a nice key, and a great deal for the price
KG9HV Rating: 4/5 Nov 24, 2004 09:17 Send this review to a friend
good cheap key  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is a good cheap straight key. I've had mine
for 11 years and it works fine. For the $17 they
cost, you can't go wrong.
K8AG Rating: 5/5 Oct 27, 2003 11:40 Send this review to a friend
30 years and still counting  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned the K4 since my second QSO as WN8WJR 30 years ago. On my first QSO, the cheap plastic key came apart and I finished the qso by touching two of the key parts together. The K4 has been my primary key all along. I have tried other straight keys, but none of them were as easy to adjust with the easy feel of the Ameco.


John Pawlicki, K8AG (formerly WB8WJR, WN8WJR)
VE7BGP Rating: 5/5 Jul 7, 2003 18:12 Send this review to a friend
Good Hand Key  Time owned: more than 12 months
My Japenese ball bearing hand key was an Armaco brand the Canadian version of Ameco I bought it for Christmas 1970 with the money Dad gave me to buy a good hand key. The old Japanese ball bearing key has served me well till I got my SpeedX a year ago and recently got a Canadian Wilson Teardrop style RCAF Hand key that one will be reviewed soon It's a Great One. I still use my old Japanese ball bearing key once and a while when the mood strikes me. Just a reply on a recent post. I find you use a little lithium white grease in the cups the ball bearings stay in place putting the key back together. I took mine apart and cleaned the bearings and cups every few years and repack the bearings and my Brass hand key still works like it did when it was new. I rate the brass oval Bunnel Triumph keys as a great basic but classic design that has been around for 120 years and you can still buy one new in 2003. See you on 40 CW some times.
73 Gerry
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