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Reviews Categories | Keys & Paddles | Begali Intrepid Help

Reviews Summary for Begali Intrepid
Begali Intrepid Reviews: 17 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $590 incl. shipping
Description: Innovative mechanical bug with magnetic adjustments
Product is in production.
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KE6EE Rating: 5/5 Nov 13, 2010 12:37 Send this review to a friend
Widely-adjustable speed  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
This is an addition to my previous review. My opinion remains that this is the best of bugs, although also the most expensive. You certainly don't need an Intrepid to send high-quality code, but it's a pleasure to use in every way and I have to say is essentially flawless.

My experience with it has shown me that it can be adjusted to work at quite a low speed (10 wpm) by moving the weights to the very end of the pendulum with the damper set to hit a weight rather than the pendulum proper. I am convinced that learning to send well with a bug requires practice at a relatively slow speed.

Another perhaps overlooked quality of this bug is that it is massive. Its weight means that it simply will not move around on the desk while sending. The only other bug I've seen with sufficient weight to prevent movement absolutely was a Vibroplex modified so that there were two (2) bases, making the bug twice as heavy as the usual Vibroplex.

G3XOV Rating: 5/5 Oct 2, 2009 06:05 Send this review to a friend
OUTSTANDING  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
My Intrepid was despatched on Wed.23 Sept and
arrived 0845 Mon.28th.It had obviously been transported with care by DPD Worldwide Couriers
and I was able to track its progress en route.
On opening the excellent packaging,I was struck
by the weight and solid feel of the key.This is a
beautiful piece of modern engineering that Piero
has designed and built up to a high standard and
not down to a price.The key breaks with tradition
and is a new concept in bug design.All adjustments are made using fine threaded and
spring loaded screws that,once set,never vary.
Return springs have been discarded in favour of
magnets and the arrangement allows setting of dot
length and spacing as well as damping.In use,the
normal clatter of the traditional bug is gone and
operation is almost silent. The usual "U" spring
for the dot contact is no longer present and
investigation reveals that it has been replaced by a coil spring behind the dot contact and
completely hidden inside the adjustment screw.
Due to the overall weight,the key will never move
around the desk no matter how heavy the operator's fist! There are other fine bug keys
available and I'm not going to compare the Intrepid with these that have stood the test of time but IMHO this key is in a class of its own.
Welcome to the 21st Century and well done Piero
and Bruna.
Ron in central UK
W5PEH Rating: 5/5 Jun 20, 2009 13:27 Send this review to a friend
Precision Bug !!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Excellent craftsmanship. Excellent sending key. Very nice feel and easily controlled. Very precise and easy to make nice sounding dits and dahs. There are two magnets for the pendulum swing allowing you to fine tune the dit speed and spacing. Very easy to adjust. All adjustments can be made while sending.This is my number one bug when it comes to precision. Excellent feel.
KJ5XF Rating: 5/5 Jun 14, 2009 07:53 Send this review to a friend
Great key!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have several iambic keys/bugs in my collection and I was looking forward to actually trying out Begali's new "bug". I contacted Bruna Begali via email and she let me know that there would be a Begali booth at HamCom. After using their demo model at HamCom, I realized it was the smoothest "bug" that I have ever used. The net result is that #015 is now part of my key collection...

One thing is for sure, it is heavy (~6 lbs) and it
will not slide around. Keep up the great work Mr. Begali!!
K6JPA Rating: 5/5 Jun 9, 2009 13:03 Send this review to a friend
Another FIrst Class Begali Product  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I wanted to add my two cents on the matter. I have Key #005, and this is my sixth Begali work of art. The quality of the key is evident in every detail. The articulating movement is smooth and precise. The finish of the main mechanism is flawless, and beautifully compliments natural course texture of the cast iron base in an artistic, yet functional, manner. The overall weight will resist unwanted movement from the heaviest of fisted users, and the design is very comfortable to operate.

On a personal note, just as important to me of the operation of my items is the reputation of the sources that produce them. That being said, I had the honor of having Pietro's daughter, Bruna, personally deliver my key to me here in San Francisco. Aside from being charming, her pride of the Begali product line and dedication to customer satisfaction for their family business is unmistakable. All parents of a family business should be as fortunate as Pietro.

Pietro Begali is obviously a genius in regards to this art of key manufacturing and design. In my opinion, his masterpieces should be considered not just as devices, but as investments that will only increase in both value and desirability throughout time.
WA1SKQ Rating: 5/5 May 23, 2009 07:28 Send this review to a friend
Fantastic workmanship  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Thereís been quite a lot of buzz about this key and though I cannot give a long term userís review I am happy to share some gut feelings after three days of owning #006.

First, as always the Begali family was a pleasure to deal with. I had ordered the key at the beginning of May and Bruna was nice enough to bring it along to Dayton so she could save me the international shipping charges.

This is not an inexpensive item. I own and use many different bugs but on the occasion of my 60 birthday felt justified in spending the money. I did so with some trepidation as I already own one magnetic bug and after several years of using that, I was still unconvinced that marrying bugs to magnets was a good idea.

The bug is beautiful. The brass-on-black base finish is simply outstanding. I was intrigued by the mechanismís design and took the bug to my work bench to look at under my large shop magnifying glass. As expected, the workmanship is elegant. As pointed out by others, this is a heavy piece of equipment and regardless of your style of sending, it will not move. Ever.

This is the first bug in memory that came with an instruction manual. You are provided with a solid understanding of what each adjustment is designed to do and what result you can expect. There is also a step-by-step guide to setting the bug up. Even after 45 years of using this type of key I still found myself referring to the quick instructions. Setting it up properly takes a bit of time. Iím still fine tuning and suspect I will be for a while. What makes the adjustments a joy is the spring-loaded design as opposed to the screw and lock nut found on most bugs. The Intrepid can be adjusted easily with one hand while sending with the other. This makes very subtle adjustments easy as you are doing them on the fly rather then start, stop and adjust.

As mentioned this is the second magnetic bug that Iíve used. It is different. The feel is more paddle-like than bug like. It does allow you to change the necessary pressure ever so slightly, something that I find a nice advantage. Old time users might initially miss the banging sensation of an old Vibroplex but those used to paddles and looking for a first time bug will find this an easy transition.

Once set up, speed adjustments are easy and require no additional changes beyond moving the two small weights. Low and high speed limits are as presented and the bug handles very well at both ends of the spectrum.

Looking for something special? This is it.
IK0YGJ Rating: 5/5 Apr 30, 2009 05:57 Send this review to a friend
Again a Masterpiece from Piero  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This bug is a complete head-start new project from Piero.
I had the privilege to try it in advance, and it is a very fine piece of machinery.

For those unfamirial with mechanical keys, the Begali Intrepid is a Bug, i.e. a semi-automatic key producing automatically the series of dots, with timing mechanically adjusted, while dashes are made manually by the operator.

It can be fine-tuned to achieve a perfect 3:1 timing. Is *heavy* and stays firmly put on your desk.
The design is new, with a mechanically very long arm (two times the base), splitted in two parts.
There is a lower arm, which transmits momentum to the upper arm and a sophisticated damper design with anti-damper magnet on the other side, allowing a perfect adjusting of dot mark and space.
This way, the Bug sounds like a keyer.

I played with it on air and no one was able to hear the difference from a keyer.

The lower arm is designed in two sections, bound together at rest. While manipulating dashes and dots, these two sections split in such a way that dash and dots contacts are closed accordingly.

The upper arm hosts two small weights, hinged to the lower arm to transfer energy when manipulating dots. These weights control the resonance frequency of the whole system and, thus, the manipulation speed, that can be varied in a range approximately from 18 to 40 WPM.

Mechanically speaking, the key is simply outstanding, it can be fine-tuned with 8 independent adjustments.

The idea of splitting the arm in two parts (one lower and one upper) together with a very smooth mechanical construction, yields much less fatigue and, thus, a very comfortable manipulation.

This key will be presented by Piero and Bruna in Dayton hamfest in middle May.
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