- Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) Community

Call Search

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Friends Remembered
Survey Question

DX Cluster Spots

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

Reviews Categories | Keys & Paddles | Elecraft KXPD1 paddle kit Help

Reviews Summary for Elecraft KXPD1 paddle kit
Elecraft KXPD1 paddle kit Reviews: 5 Average rating: 3.8/5 MSRP: $69.00
Description: Paddles that go with the KX-1 but they're easy to attach to almost any keyer
or radio especially QRP/homebrew/kit types, simple elegent design
Product is in production.
More info:
Email Subscription
You are not subscribed to this review.

My Subscriptions
Subscriptions Help

You can write your own review of the Elecraft KXPD1 paddle kit.

G4YVM Rating: 4/5 Mar 11, 2015 08:44 Send this review to a friend
Good, not great  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
A good little paddle. Certainly cleverly simple in design. It works okay and does the job but mis-key errors do happen; there's a technique to using this paddle.

On the upside, it compliments the KX1 well and I can think of no other key that fits so well and allows me to hold the lot in one hand whilst keying with the other.
KB4QAA Rating: 2/5 Jul 17, 2009 23:48 Send this review to a friend
Nice idea needs improvement  Time owned: more than 12 months
The paddle is a great idea that needs some improvement. I had to add a split washer to the knurled screw because it would work loose after a short time in use. The rubber sleeve over spring contacts is just too imprecise. Sending errors just become annoying because I can't reliably touch at more than low-moderate speed. The basic frame is great. someone must have a cleverer way to mount the contacts.
N2XE Rating: 3/5 Nov 10, 2005 13:14 Send this review to a friend
Functional - Nice Concept  Time owned: more than 12 months
I recommend you buy them. It completes the KX1, they do work and are worth the money.

I love Elecraft stuff as much as the next guy. But let's review what these ratings mean: 5 is Great!; 3 is OK; 0 is Awful. So before you go and beat me up for giving the KXPD1 paddles a 3, keep in mind I'm saying they're OK.

After three years of using them, the bloom is off the rose. They are not great. The leaf spring switch covered in rubber is just plain mushy. I make lots of mistakes with this key. I do not like the feel at all.

I do, however, use the KXPD1 with the KX1 all the time--a lot. They work and the design works well with the KX1. I put up with a lot of compromises while backpacking. This is one of them.

The concept is super cool. The execution fell a little short.
N0TK Rating: 5/5 Sep 9, 2005 20:48 Send this review to a friend
Better than Expected  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I had postponed purchasing the KXPD1 since I had a light weight paddle that worked well with the KX1. When a local ham loaned me his to try out on my KX1 I expected that it would take some time to become accustomed to the paddles. Instead, I found that they worked very well on first use and that I could send accurately at high cw speeds. My order was processed promptly by Elecraft and the paddle went together with no problems. A fine tip soldering iron is needed to solder the connections to the key plug.
NS6Y_ Rating: 5/5 Feb 28, 2005 02:33 Send this review to a friend
Great probably underappreciated  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I just built mine, and tested it on the Norcal QRP keyer I built earlier today. Works FB!

While the experience is still fresh in my mind, I'd like to add some notes:

(1) The silver wire for the contacts is SOFT. If you use pliers to get it down flat to the paddle surface, you can burr up the contact surface, so be careful - press down on a formica counter top or something, and pull the wire ends from the other side to flatten it against the PCB.

(2) Maybe it's personal but I really do not like solid wire in any vibration-prone application. Counting on having uninsulated wires bent just right to avoid contact bothers me too. And the solid wire makes things a lot harder in assembly too in my opinion. With stranded wire, you could put your wires on the stereo jack, then plug it in, attach one paddle, bring its wire out and solder and trim, then attach the other paddle, putting its wire in the hole as you bolt it on, solder and trim. I followed this process with the solid wires, and cheated even worse by putting a little teflon tubing on one - at least with Elecrafts you can always get in there and re-do it later but this way I don't feel I'll have to!

(3) This is such a simple easy design, before I knew it I was done! Now to test. I plugged it into my keyer and got constant dit-dah-dit-dah-dit-dah-dit-dah....... I knew I didn't have anything shorted, so I slipped off the rubber covers - sure enough, since they're new, they're a bit tight, the paddles were fine. So I put the rubber covers back on and kind of "squeezed" them to make more slack on the wire contact (outer) sides, and it works FB. I'd do this before I considered filing down the contacts, those rubber covers will loosen up over time and you'll wish you hadn't. My kit came with enough silver wire for another set of contacts say 20 years down the road......

All in all a really neat thing! These attach to the rig or keyer with a thumbscrew and of course the stereo plug, which means they can attach to anything you set up with the right configuration of stereo jack and a threaded hole for the thumbscrew. Including the thumbscrew mine weighs in at 1.045 oz. which is lighter than just about anything you can take into the field and have work so solidly and reliably.

If you have any questions, problems, or suggestions about Reviews, please email your Reviews Manager.