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Author Topic: Begali Blade straight key  (Read 3541 times)
W2BLC
Member

Posts: 40




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« on: May 31, 2009, 01:37:41 PM »

Does anyone have any opinions of this new key? It can be seen at: http://www.i2rtf.com/html/blade.html

Thanks
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K7KBN
Member

Posts: 3693




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« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2009, 06:32:46 PM »

An opinion just from looking at it:  it's a very expensive thing that has the exact same functionality as a J-37.  Might be considered "beautiful" by some, but not by me.

73
Pat K7KBN
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
K7PEH
Member

Posts: 1146




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« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2009, 08:27:11 PM »

"...has the exact same functionality as a J-37"

Yes, it does indeed have the same functionality as a J-37 (or, as my J-38) but I love my Begali Camelback compared to my J-38.  The nice thing about the Begali is that it is a heavy base and absolutely will not move around on you.  You have to do something to a J-38 to get it that firm such as mounting it on some heavy metal stock which actually changes the feel of the J-38 by lifting the key too high (usually).

I also have the Begali iambic paddle which I use more then the Camelback.  I use the Camelback on some SKNs and when I need to dip below 10 wpm.

Cost?  No big deal.  It will last forever and what else are you going to do with the money.  As they say, you can't take it with you -- but, I do think that you can take a Begali key with you.
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W8ZNX
Member

Posts: 1




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« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2009, 01:48:13 AM »

telegraph key is nothing but a tool
for sending morse code

have owned more  than 100 keys
from all over the world

US Army Signal Corps WWII mil surplus straight keys

even the plastic Soviet mil surplus key is better
than the J-38 / J-37

high end keys having the same functionality
as a mil surplus 75 cent key

yea
thought that way
about 25 years ago
till i tried a high end Swedish pump handle key

get the key
you will love it
it will last you a lifetime

note how many cw ops
moved away from straight keys
as soon as they could
blame it on the J-37 and J-37

spending a night using a high end straight key
is a pleasure
spending a night using a J-37 or J-38
is a pain

mac
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K5END
Member

Posts: 1316




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« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2009, 07:36:17 AM »

For what it's worth the Bencher straight key is better than the J-38.

I think it's around $90, so I guess it's a midline key.

I just got a Begali Contour, with magnetic return "springs." I had been using the Kent, which is a fine key. I thought it was the best I ever needed, until I tried the Begali for myself at Dayton.

With Begali I believe you really do get what you pay for, and you DO pay for it.
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AF4XK
Member

Posts: 96




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« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2009, 04:46:30 PM »

Very nice looking key!
I'd like to hear a comparison from someone who owns both the Begali Blade and the Junker (which I own).
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K7KBN
Member

Posts: 3693




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« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2009, 09:15:58 PM »

A beautiful, shiny, multi-hundred dollar key will sound exactly like my J-37 on the other end of the QSO.  I was given the J-37 half a century ago and after mounting it on a heavy base (which took all of half an hour and still looks new), it still works just fine.

As mentioned earlier, it's just a tool for sending code.  My tool might be plain, but it works, and the price was right.

73
Pat K7KBN
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
W8ZNX
Member

Posts: 1




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« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2009, 01:57:16 AM »

Pat
have you spent any time
using a high profile key
spent years thinking that all straight keys
were the same

for 20 years the only straight keys
i had ever used were the J-37, J-47, J-38,

one day about 20 years ago saw a 1938 photo
of the Japanese Imperial Navy radio school
all these tables with big BIG pump handle keys
bolted to the very edge of the tables

thought how could anybody send that way
a few weeks later i got my first pump handle key

European style sending using a pump handle key
opened up another world for me

knew i was never going back to using low profile American style keys and American style sending

looks
the German mil surplus Junker is nothing to look at
the Soviet mil surplus Cherkassy TK es TKF keys look like junk
but these keys are great

live a little
try a high end key
heck try a Soviet Cherkassy
you might like it

mac
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VE3WMB
Member

Posts: 332




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« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2009, 08:14:46 AM »

I agree with Mac.

Personally I prefer European style sending with the arm off the table.  I was fortunate enough to have been given a Swedish Military straight key by a friend and I must admit it is the most amazing straight key I have ever used. Like the Blade it uses a leaf spring, resulting in absolutely no side-to-side motion whatsoever and almost effortless sending.  It uses the "classic" Swedish key design like  the Lenart Pettersson keys and
the similar Hi-Mound HK-802.

Based on the reputation of Begali keys and the feedback I have received from friends who own one of his keys I would say if you are looking at buying a "Blade" go for it. I am sure you will not regret it.

Cheers

Michael VE3WMB
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K7KBN
Member

Posts: 3693




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« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2009, 08:35:02 AM »

Mac - I've spent the last 50 years with my J-37, and I have no problems with it.  Just about every SKN during that time, and quite often during the rest of the year, I've been on the air using the J-37, getting good reports about my sending.

Yes, I have tried the "European" style of sending, but not long.  It seemed awkward 20 years ago when I first tried it, and it still seems awkward now.  I can enjoy QSOs at 20+ WPM for hours at a time.  There is no reason I can think of that would persuade me to spend over a hundred bucks on a gold-plated SPST switch.

My dad's tools, some of which belonged to HIS dad, are now mine, and I'm passing them along, as needed, to MY son.  Dad's hammer has a hickory handle that's about 80 years old.  It's not bright and shiny; it doesn't have an ergonomic handle with dimensions as specified by renowned orthopedic experts.  It's a hammer, and it works just the way it's supposed to.

Same with my J-37.  If you feel that you have to have something with the name "Begali" on it, that's fine.  I don't feel the same way, and that's fine, too.

73
Pat K7KBN
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
HB9ASB
Member

Posts: 1




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« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2009, 07:46:46 AM »

A few weeks ago I got the Blade number 08. It’s the best key I’ve ever used and it will now replace my old Telefunken as my main key. The keying is smooth, very precise and almost effortless. I’m licensed since 1969 and always used straight keys only. The price is high of course, but you buy a key like this only once in a lifetime and IMHO it is not too much for this masterpiece.
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AK2B
Member

Posts: 94




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« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2009, 09:54:56 AM »

I don't have the key that you mentioned but I will say that even though Begali is expensive, with the two paddles I bought about three years ago, I could easily sell them and get more than what I paid for them. You can look at them as investments if you want but, in my case, I wouldn't sell them for anything. You can live on meat and potatoes but every now and then you want a little ice cream.
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