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 Here I go again... 
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Post Here I go again...
Now that I'm sitting in my home office for 8+ hrs a day, I've decided to try learning CW again, just copying it to start with as I currently have no HF rig and no keys or anything.

I've started with the Ham Whisperer Lessons on Youtube and also using the Morse CT app on my phone, but I'll give the LockDown Lessons a look too.

I've started to learn CW so often, and not got anywhere, but this time I'm going to keep at it, half an hour in the morning and half an hour in the afternoon, and see where I get.

Anyone else starting (again)?


Fri Apr 24, 2020 5:29 pm
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
As you haven't got any HF gear what about listening into one of the RSGB slow morse transmissions using one of the remote SDR receivers, like Hack Green.

https://rsgb.org/main/operating/morse/c ... -schedule/

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Fri Apr 24, 2020 6:04 pm
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
That's a great shout, will definitely do that.

I have a question that the collective may be able to help me with. Is it best to learn everything at a low speed (~5WPM) and then increase speed, or to learn to copy letter and then words at higher speeds (>12WPM) but with bigger gaps between letters initially and the words/groups. Then everything can be sped up by reducing the spaces between letters or words.

I tend to find that I recognise more at higher speed but am just slow at moving between letters. Could it be that recognising at more "normal" QSO speeds makes progress easier or quicker?

Stefan


Sat Apr 25, 2020 10:09 am
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
That's a difficult one to answer, because everyone learns things differently, one learning method might suit one person but not another.

Try learning the characters at 10-12WPM then reduce the gaps as you say, what your goal is at the moment is to learn the characters and to learn the rhythm of the characters and at that sort of speed isn't going to give you much time to count the dots and dashes.

If you have a partner who wants to learn as well, that's of great help as I found out back in the 1960's when I was learning.

This is an interesting little video.


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Sat Apr 25, 2020 11:00 am
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
Maybe worth a look here http://www.g4fon.net/

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Sat Apr 25, 2020 12:09 pm
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
I've seen that US Army film before, but enjoyed watching it again.

So I've managed to spend at least half an hour per day on copying practice, on the letters in the first 2 Ham Whisperer lessons. In the YT vids I think they're sent around 5 wpm, but in copying practice I've been listening to the letters at 12wpm.

Tonight I've added another three letters and 1 number, so now I'm working on 9 letters (a, e, i, m, n, o, r, s, t) and 3 numbers (0, 1, 5) and I plan to do an hour a day, split into 3 or 4 sessions, on these for a few days.

I actually feel like I've gotten further this time already, and I'm enjoying it more. I'm determined to keep at it this time, and I will make a CW contact before the end of the year.

I'm going to keep a progress diary of sorts in this thread, if only to keep myself motivated and going.


Sun Apr 26, 2020 7:31 pm
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
Well, some more progress, of sorts.
I've managed to spend at least an hour each day on this, and have focused on the letters I have already, but at a faster sending speed.
I've also been forcing myself to only have a single pass at each set of letters and trying really hard to not stop when I miss a letter but just write down the next letter I hear. I'm still writing about a letter behind, but seem to use the numbers to "catch up".
All in all, I'm averaging at around 80% correct at 15WPM character speed, but single letters at 8WPM word speed if that makes sense.

I think I'll stay at this rate (artificial as it is) until I have all the letters, numbers and punctuation, and then start with groups of letters and words, but I'm happy that I've gotten further this time than I have any other time.

Does any of the above make you seasoned pros recoil in horror?


Wed Apr 29, 2020 3:01 pm
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
You are getting to the point where you need to also listen on the air, you will start to pick out patterns like CQ, DE, THE, NAME, 73, QTH, QRZ etc. You might pick out parts of callsigns. Look around 3558kHz on the SDR there are plenty of slower stations sending, last night I heard a HA station calling CQ at 8WPM, clearly a novice, nevertheless I still went back to him even though I have difficulty sending that slowly.

Slow steady progress and don't get frustrated with yourself if you suddenly find you don't think you are making any progress, believe me, you are!

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Wed Apr 29, 2020 3:40 pm
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
Yeah, I've had Hack Green on in the background when working and I can pick out CQ at pretty much any speed, and I've been listening for 5NN and 599.

Will keep on with it, I'm determined to have an on-air QSO in CW before the end of the year.


Wed Apr 29, 2020 5:07 pm
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
MI0PYN wrote:
Yeah, I've had Hack Green on in the background when working and I can pick out CQ at pretty much any speed, and I've been listening for 5NN and 599.

Will keep on with it, I'm determined to have an on-air QSO in CW before the end of the year.

Nice one, you have exactly the attitude that means one day it will all click, because you actually want to learn it! ;)
When having to learn it for HF access in the old class A/B days, the ones who wanted to learn it as a mode, usually picked it up far quicker than the ones that all the time they were learning it had in the back of their minds it was just a means to an end, and they had no interest in using it once they passed the 12 wpm test and got the A ticket.
There were quite a few of them, plenty of old school class A callsign holders who have never bothered with CW once they gained their HF ticket.
The ones that thrive, and for whom it just becomes another easy on the ear language in a way, are the ones that actually enjoy using it.
Keep on at it, it will click eventually, and then becomes less of a massive concentration brain straining exercise, and starts to become an easy on the ear relaxed pleasure. :)
Don't know if you have any within earshot, but years ago repeaters used to occasionally broadcast their callsigns, and sometimes other info in morse at regular intervals, they in the old days started with GB3.. two letters etc., I found them a good way to pick out callsigns as a casual listening exercise, and was very useful when you came across a new one you had not heard before, and wanted to know which one it was without having to call in and ask.
Not sure how many of them still do it?

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Thu Apr 30, 2020 4:58 am
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
I've hit a little bit of a plateau at 12 letters and 4 numbers, perhaps because work has got in the way a lot the last week or so.
I'm still getting half an hour or so a day. but feel like I'm not getting much better at recall. I'm glad that I got the heads up that it would likely happen, so that I've not let it dent my determination :-)

I've been spending some time on Hack Green as well, and can pick out a CQ no problem, regardless of the speed, and can normally get the 'de' after it, as well as the 'k' at the end, so I'm getting on well there I think. I'm also able to copy some snippets of callsigns, with the Italians shouting CQ for the contest over the weekend giving me plenty of copying practice, where they were sending their callsign a lot.
One of the things I have noticed is that there is not much slow CW about most of the time. Hack Green doesn't go down far enough on 80m to get to the telegraphy section, which is a shame, and the telegraphy sections of other bands are also missing.

Are there any other WebSDRs the collective can point me to which do cover the telegraphy sections of the bands?

Stefan


Mon May 04, 2020 4:31 pm
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
MI0PYN wrote:
I've hit a little bit of a plateau at 12 letters and 4 numbers, perhaps because work has got in the way a lot the last week or so.
I'm still getting half an hour or so a day. but feel like I'm not getting much better at recall. I'm glad that I got the heads up that it would likely happen, so that I've not let it dent my determination :-)

I've been spending some time on Hack Green as well, and can pick out a CQ no problem, regardless of the speed, and can normally get the 'de' after it, as well as the 'k' at the end, so I'm getting on well there I think. I'm also able to copy some snippets of callsigns, with the Italians shouting CQ for the contest over the weekend giving me plenty of copying practice, where they were sending their callsign a lot.
One of the things I have noticed is that there is not much slow CW about most of the time. Hack Green doesn't go down far enough on 80m to get to the telegraphy section, which is a shame, and the telegraphy sections of other bands are also missing.

Are there any other WebSDRs the collective can point me to which do cover the telegraphy sections of the bands?

Stefan


Don't give up one day you will listen and it will be their, we all had stumbling blocks at various speeds. Many years ago when I was studying for the PMG I got stuck on 12wpm, the rest of the class were moving on not me, it was just a wall for 3 weeks it was just not sinking in then one morning I put the phones and and it flowed within 4 weeks I was at 25wpm, keep at it, it will come.

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Keith G0TSH

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Mon May 04, 2020 5:47 pm
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Post Re: Here I go again...
Here is a list of the web sdr's, you can filter it do just highlight the one's that are in Europe and cover 80m, the one in the Netherlands is particularly good.

http://www.websdr.org/

http://websdr.ewi.utwente.nl:8901/

Keep at it, it will all of a sudden click.

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Mon May 04, 2020 5:48 pm
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Post Re: Here I go again...
I agree with Keith, in 1948 I was in the Royal Navy training to be a Boy Telegraphist. All went OK to about 8wpm when I hit that blank wall. Just couldn't get it beyond that. I had an interview with the Signal Officer, saying I wanted to change branch to seaman but he insisted I stick at it. It will come, he said, everyone gets a 'plateau' and in a couple of weeks you'll pass it. Lo! and behold, his words came true and I sailed on to final qualifying speed of 25wpm. You just have to stick at it but don't over do it.
Best of luck.
73 de Ken G3RFH


Tue May 05, 2020 9:00 am
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 Here I go again... 
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Post Re: Here I go again...
Thanks for the encouragement gents, and I've bookmarked the Dutch SDR site.


Tue May 05, 2020 9:03 am
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