PA3CLQ's Leuke Linken Nr. 484


I1QOD make copies of the PS-213 key.

He is a retired aviation tool and die machinest and perhaps the fastest Morse operator in the world. He knows a good key.
    G0NVT makes a variation of the key.

He is a retired Royal Navy Machinest, he does excellent work, especially with his historic reproductions.

I am blessrd to call him a friend whom company I enjoy when he visits.
    I would buy a PS213 from Alfredo, I1QOD.

He made a improved faithful reproduction.

Improved because he put a beeded base on tge key, and corrected the earlier keys structural weakness.

(Improved contact tongue)
    I have not tried Begali's best straight key, but I have used his best sideswiper from the same signature line of quality and that key is true perfection.

I have sent the same amount on other sideswipers as Begali's top of the line, and had I known how good this key was, I would have bought it and never ever bought another sideswiper.
    Probably the best hand key has been made with the same care, but I have not used it.
The best straight key I have ever used is the PS-213A key, it has a beautiful feel.
    The second best key is a copy made by G0NVT custom made for me with a full sub-base to stop tipping.

An excellent key which captures nearly all of the feel of the PS-213A.

The real one is just a bit better.
    The G0NVT current version has an ingenious basket spring tension and is a simplified version of the PS-213A reproduction he made.

I had both but but I liked the one custom made for me.

The current versiin is a very good key, but I would buy I1QOD's version as it is more authentic and I think the G0NVT curent simplified design changes the feel for me.
    Right below these keys are the Marconi 365 keys, Amplidan, SRS Lennart Petterson, GNT Copenhagen (later made in UK), NATO key, Junker, Baumaster
Maus key.
    Those are my comfort keys.
73, David N1EA

RRI EMCOMM Exercise - CW

Hello Everyone:
Many SKCC members enjoy QRP and portable operation.

Therefore, some of you may be interested in an upcoming Radio Relay International EMCOMM Exercise, which will emphasize portable CW operation.
This is a nice chance to get out in the field in the Springtime, set up a portable CW rig or QRP arrangement and demonstrate survivable CW operation
in a public park or similar setting.
Complete details on the exercise are available at:

A catalog of RRI Documents may be found at:

73, James Wades SKCCGroup


Classic Exchange (CX) Vintage Radio Event

The Winter Classic Exchange "CX" radio event will be taking place Sunday Jan 21st and Tuesday Jan 23rd.

Please consider hooking up your key, bug, or cootie to a vintage radio and join in the fun!
Details may be fond here:

73 Mark K3MSB SKCCGroup


End Fed Half Wave wires

I need to redo my antenna infrastructure after having solar panels installed on my house.

I'm thinking of going for an end-fed half wave.
In the MFJ ad they claim the EFHW will cover 80 m - 10 m without a tuner. 
If you have experience, good or bad, with an EFHW, I'd like to hear from you.

Either via the group or personal email is fine. 
Thanks for your help! 
Steve AI9IN
I have used a 8010 EFHW for field day and other portable ops.

It's a a great antenna at 80' or 30'

The construction is much better than the MFJ version.

SWR across all bands is excellent.

I am going to put 2 up at my new QTH perpendicular to each other to cover some lobe gaps at the higher frequencies.

Customer support is awesome.
Bob AF9W

I have been using an EFHW by for three months now with good results.

Due to unique circumstances it is mounted on each end by ROHN telescoping masts about 30' high.

The transmission line end also has a 6M ground-plane antenna mounted above it.

I am looking to get a second to support portable ops.

My radio's internal tuner hasn't had a problem.

One shortcoming is the lack of 60M.

The details:
EFHW-8010-HP Multiband End Fed Half Wave Antenna 130 Feet (39.6m) long #18 or #14 wire
NO TUNER needed!
Perfect for ALE HFLink, ARES, EMCOM …
Resonant on 80/40/30/20/17/15/12/10m 1.5 kW-ICAS max.
73, Jeff de KC3HWU

I use an EFHW for 80 - 10 meters made by MyAntennas.

130 feet long I use it as a sloper from 50’ down to 15’ at the peak of my roof.

No counterpoise required and tunes up without a tuner.

I’m impressed by the performance Check it out at:

73, Jeff

Feet to meters conversion:


I use the EFHW-4010 from myantennas.

It has worked well for me.

The only problem is running high power.

The balun will only support 100W on WARC bands.

On 40M running 500W after 5 minutes the SWR started to go higher probably the balun heating up.

The balun was supposed to support 1000W ICAS.

I bought a higher power balun and all is well.

WARC bands are still limited to 100W.
Bruce, WB6IZG
Hi Steve & all,

I tried one form of end fed HW, the Zepp, fed with balanced line.

When I tried it there was so much RF in the shack the rig locked up on transmit any time I increased output beyond 20 W ! I took down and reconfigured this antenna to a center fed antenna.

The problem was resolved, even with the balanced line coming right into the shack. . 
CW is Real Radio 73, John...K8JD 

Hi Steve,
I made a page on end fed antenna calculations a few years ago:

Maybe useful, maybe not since nearby objects in the environment can affect ideal length.

If you have a capable tuner shoot for closest to halfwave, if a less capable tuner then avoid them.
GL es 73, Mike ab3ap
I have an EF wire, but not EFHW, and I do use a tuner.

The wire length is such that it can be easily matched for 10-160.

The 10:1 ATU in my K3 can handle it but I use a manual tuner to keep the RF a couple of feet farther from me and the mouse & keyboard than it would otherwise be if the wire went straight into the back of the K3.
Is my K3 ATU or manual tuner more efficient than the MFJ "no-tuner" EFHW? I don't know.

I can regularly make contacts on all bands with it. Mostly use it for 20 thru 160.
The MFJ no-tuner antenna would of course be more convenient to operate.

But I don't mind cranking my manual tuner; in fact, I kind of like it.

It's a bit retro with the surplus "ANTENNA LOADING" roller inductor and big Hammarlund knobs.

It's bigger than my K3!

73, Drew AF2Z

Steve see:

73 Mark K3MSB

Good afternoon.

I would go with the PAR antennas from LDG antennas.

I have several bands of this antenna along with the trail friendly 40/20/10 antenna which travels very nicely with my FT817 when I travel.
The other option is SotaBeams from the UK.

I also have several of these and like them almost as much as LDG.

They also make antenna masts that are great for travel as they shrink down small enough to fit in your travel bag.
Good luck in finding an EFHW antenna.

You are on the right track.
Aron Brown NN1F
Two more thoughts:
1) I needed to put a common mode choke at the feed point of the antenna.

I also put one in the shack at the amp.

I did this to reduce RF in the shack with this antenna and also on receive it cut down the noise received significantly.
2) On 40M my VSWR is just short of 2 - 1 which is just under the minimum required for the AMP.

My VSWR is OK on all other bands without a tuner.

I have seen some discussion that there can be VSWR problems with this antenna on the highest band (40M in my case) when the feed point is high in the

And some people have solved this by lowering the feedpoint.
Thanks, Bruce, WB6IZG,

I live in a very grouchy HOA so have had to get by with antennas not visible from front side of the house.

My choice for the past few years has been an end-fed long wire with a 9:1 UNUN feeding 53' of "16 gauge stranded, insulated copper wire suspended from a 20' pole at the back of the house out to a 16' post in the back yard. With 25' or more of coax feed line, no counter poise is required, and I experience satisfactory SWR (2.5 or less) on all bands 6-160 with minimal tweaking of the tuner in my K3 (most frequencies I see 1.1 or 1.2:1).
    The UNUN is from

It is $50 for their 300W model, slightly more for the KW version.

On their web site they suggest a list of optional wire lengths, obviously the longer the better, all the way up to 170'+ as I recall.
    To me, this is the best thing since sliced bread, considering that I can work anything I can hear, and that's enough to capture SX2 in very short order here in SKCC, with only 10 remaining for SX3,
    I hope this testimonial might inspire others to give this simple and cost effective antenna a try, especially if you are one of those who wishes a way to cover more SKCC frequencies and bands efficiently.
Mike, K5MP


New Morse training tool

Do you know Morse but still have to write everything down?

Wish you could just hear it and understand?

Want to improve your speed?

Wondering if there’s a better way to practice?
Morse Camp is a new tool that can help at:

It builds listening skills without requiring you to write down anything and adapts as you get better.

It’s free without ads (and will remain so), works on any modern web browser[*], and was built with mobile phones in mind so you can use it on the go.
I’ve been using it myself to practice with good results.

While I have ideas for how to develop it further, I need your help and input to make it truly good.

Please check it out at the URL above and let me know what you think!
[*] so far verified to work on Chrome, Firefox, and Microsoft Edge.
73 de Petru HB9GKP
I learned my Morse by listening to my SWL receiver starting in the late 1950's.

Have been using Morse nearly every day on the air since 1961.

Use straight key, Bug , and electronic keyer to make my Morse Music, don't need no stinkin' computers for it. 
CW is Real Radio.

73, John...K8JD

You beat me to it John.

How in the world did we ever learn and get proficient at CW without the internet and computers!
It really is humorous at what people (think they) need today to gain proficiency.

Turn off your computers and disconnect, turn on your radios and get on the air.

That method's worked for decades upon decades.......
Next week's topic for us old curmudgeons is how great life will be with an internet connected crock pot!
73 Mark K3MSB 
Hi Mark,

Yep the guys who used LP discs and tapes to learn Morse and pass the exam, got home and turned on a radio and said "WOW what's all that noise and crap, I can never copy that !!!

When I was learning I had the old S38 receiver hearing all that noise and QRM and got it down fine.
CW is Real Radio 73, John...K8JD 
Petru, that's a really fine application.

It's a great workout.
Automatically introducing more characters and using actual combinations that will be received in contacts are innovative ideas.

It is a much better way to go than the brainless "slogging" that is usually offered.
Well done!
We old wheezers have to keep in mind that long, long gone are the days when the beginner could cruise the c.w. bands to find a station operating at just the speed he needed to learn from.

Gone, too, are the 20w.p.m. press and high seas maritime traffic.

With propagation the way it is now, for many of us the c.w. bands are either an empty desert or, with a contest on, shoulder to shoulder with 35 w.p.m. Morse.
Considering the absence of normal QSO traffic at a range of speeds, this cynical old man has had to conclude that most of those contesters are not just generating Morse by computer but reading it that way too.

They are sure not achieving a reading speed of 35 w.p.m. these days by chatting with each other out on the bands.
Press on, Petru!
John at radio station VE7AOV
Yep,61 years I heard my first CW: I N T! 6 months later I copied 28 wpm.

That was a result of US Coast Guard radio school.

Now-a-days the only thing I write down are notes that I may want to refer to.

Well, aren't you two just the cat's pajamas.

Do you still ride a horse to the store and dial into the central operator when you want to make a phone call? 
Steve AI9IN
That's almost as silly as asking.........

if there are people that use mechanical sending devices to send CW, or belong to clubs that hold to that archaic view, in 2017 AD !!
73 Mark K3MSB
Another old-timer chiming in.....
If we old curmudgeons had been offered a tool like this, many of us would have welcomed it!

We used old methods (yes, they worked!) because that's what we had.
Seems to me that anything that encourages the learning of morse code is worth a serious look and try.

Thanks, Petru.
Ben VE1AHX, brand new to SKCC On the air since 1952
I think it is good also.

There is a lack of word level Morse training software.

As we all know there is much more to learning code than just recognizing the sounds of individual characters.
73, Drew AF2Z
"Not enough gap" is a common complaint of ops who haven't thrown away the learning crutch called "Farnsworth".

Not say that it doesn't have its place on the air.

Under poor conditions (such as mostly, now days) a bit of extra space is sometimes helpful, skcc numbers for example.

But very seriously now, wide spacing is a learning tool that students ought to leave behind at some point.

One dit spacing is standard; in fact, wider spacing is antagonistic to head copy.
Gary, K9ZMD
I can't get on it with this old Android phone.

All that comes up is a blank grey screen.
John, N9RLO

Hi John,
Thanks for letting me know.

It might be that your browser doesn't support all the things the app needs to work.

I need to make it explicit when this is happening so that users don't just get a blank screen.
What you could try, if your phone will allow it, is to install an updated browser such as Chrome   or Firefox

For Windows 7, were you using Internet Explorer?

It unfortunately doesn't support the needed features for the app (as mentioned in the previous message, I'll make it report when this is happening instead of just showing a blank page).
You can instead try either Chrome, Firefox, Safari for Windows, or Microsoft Edge (which unfortunately doesn't seem to work on Windows 7, so it might ask you to upgrade to Windows 10).

73, Petru
Hi, Petru.
I tried it for a bit.

Short spare time right now, but every once in awhile, the first character was cut short at the beginning. QRS was sent KRS, cutting the first dah of Q.
I am using Fire Fox with WIN7 pro at 30 WPM. I will play with it more later.

I agree, for head copy, Farnsworth would be a hindrance.
Regards, Joe, K8JP/V31JP,
Joe, thanks for the report. I've seen that before on Firefox and thought

had fixed it since it's no longer happening for me.

I'll keep digging into it, for now I created a known issue

to see if other browser/OS combinations have this problem.

I'm assuming you're using an up to date Firefox version?
73, Petru


Reminder - Keep your log file safe

Just a quick reminder as the year begins.
If you use a PC to log your contacts, keep your log file(s) in a safe place.

A hard disk stores data on a spinning platter with a read/write head separated by a very thin layer of air.

It's amazing how they work, but they are also a disaster waiting to happen.
Personally, i find comfort in keeping my log files on a USB thumb drive permanently plugged into my PC which I backup periodically to another USB drive and to a hard disk.

These USB drives are very affordable these days.
Ron, AC2C

Wow, John K8JD and Mark K3MSB. Really?

A guy brings his own work on a possibly helpful tool for others here, for free, and you guys kick him for it?

You guys feel the need to denigrate all who didn't do it the old fashioned way? 
Nice attitude.
Really guys, that's pretty low. 
Doug N3PDT


[slowspeedwire] Last Telegraph Service in Belgium yesterday published an article stating that telegram service is coming to an end in Belgium.

Obviously not done in Morse or Continental, and not with keys and sounders, but by printer circuits.

More like a "commercial message service" than real telegrams.

For what it's worth...

-- 73 SW & (abram burnett)

Interesting stuff that.

The telegraph system here in N.Z commenced in 1862, Morse transmission abandoned about 1963/4, telegrams ceased and telegraph branches closed in 1988.
I was fortunate to be able work morse circuits (which were but a shadow of their early traffic handling) from 1952 to 1963.
Ah! The memories.
73, Maurie AK Ofc

In the later years of telegrams in the USA they were all done by Teletype as well.

Only American railroads used manual telegraphy right up until 1963 including when they were serving as Western Union offices in smaller towns.

It was a shortage of qualified telegraphers rather than better technology that made the railroads give it up. 
Tom Horne

Over the years I have come across various sources which have stated the percentage of WU messages handled by teleprinter for that time frame. The first, from 1914, was 20% (said to mostly be by using technology developed by WU's chief engineer John Barclay, better known in the telegraph community for his invention of the Barclay box relay, see this link for that source:

The next was from 1927 and it stated that it was already 75% teleprinter by that time.

The third from an actual WU 1941 typewritten report in the WU files kept in the local history division of the Rochester Public Library stated that it was 95% teleprinter at that time.

The last from a joint book by WU and AT&T celebrating the 100th anniversary of the telegraph in 1944 stated that it was 97% at that time (In that same book AT&T stated that their private line business was 95% teleprinter in 1944 having started at zero in 1918).

Now I am assuming that these numbers all represent percentage of messages handled but the reports were not clear as to exactly what the percentages represented in detail, just whatever percent of the business.

Of course as Tom states, railroads continued to support Morse telegraph and if one dropped into a small town train station before the mid 1960's to send a telegram, it likely would at least be started on its way using Morse Code.

Somewhere I came across a statement that WU dropped their last support for Morse Code in 1966 but the details of where and what were not stated.

73, Chris Hausler

On the Illinois Central, we used the telegraph lines until about 1969 .......

that was mainly because of a bad ice storm which took down the lines, which were not repaired.

We still handled WU msgs on the wire in Illinois up until about 1967.
Skip Luke, Retireded Railroader


ARRL Controversy

Hello Everyone:
A couple weeks ago, there was some discussion about recent controversy at the ARRL.
A friend sent me a link to the following web page that some may find of interest:

It's a worthwhile read.
73, James Wades (WB8SIW)
I wrote my Director and he invited me to share my letter with all the Directors and Officers of ARRL.......

which I did and got no response from any of them.

I think we have cause for concern.

If is wasn't for the ARRL, there might not be any amateur radio today; certainly not to the extent we have it.
If the ARRL turns starts operating like a 3rd world dictatorship, the future of amateur radio is very bleak indeed.

The real question is this: "Do hams really care?"

Most of us want to enjoy our hobby without drama.

However, the ARRL is important to both members and non-members alike.

It is viewed by important agencies, such as the FCC, as the de facto representative of the Amateur Radio Community.

These incidents should be a big wake-up call to SKCC members and CW operators.

The future of your operating interests lie in the hands of a few elected ARRL representatives.

A failure to take heed could result in marginalization or outright destruction of your interests.
I'd recommend that the link be shared with one's friends and distributed to local radio clubs.

For ARRL members, it's now or never.
In the interest of disclosure; I resigned my ARRL membership in 2016 in protest over the treatment of the NTS.
73, James Wades

"The optimist proclaims that we live in the best of all possible worlds, The pessimist fears this is true."


Presidents and vice presidents are NOT supposed to lead.
They are supposed to FOLLOW the will of the Board of Directors, who DIRECT.

Presidents and vice presidents execute the will of the Directors who represent and are elected by the membership.
Every organization with a President who leads without following the Directors quickly goes astray.
73, David Ring N1EA


Pse take a look for Nice transceivers at:



Hello Friends

[SSN] How to make a sideswiper QST 1960

a few years ago, Han-PA3HCY, sent me a copy of an article from QST, july 1960.

He made this very sideswiper and used it a lot on air.

Some oldtimers may recognize the article.

It was far before my radio-years...

For all: happy New Year!

CU on SSN.

73 Durk, PA3BYW

See attachment.........Editor

The latest (01-06-2018) from Tamitha Skov

Published on Jan 6, 2018

The Sun continues its slow descent into solar minimum with very low activity and shrinking coronal holes.
... learn how long the poor radio propagation conditions are expected to last, ...
Cheers, Darrel, aa7fv.

Have a nice week(end) gents, BCNU.
73, Yann, F5LAW

By OM Yann F5LAW SideSwiperNetGroup


73, from the town at the rivers "De Bergsche Maas" and "De Dongen" Geertruidenberg (800+ years city rights) at: 51.702211N 4.853854E

Editor Jan Pieter Oelp PA3CLQ



My simple website about Gigantic DF-Antennas

Part 1 "DF-Antenna Wullenweber Array"

Part 2 "DF-Antenna USSR Variants"

Part 3 "DF-Antenna USA Variant"

Next Part 4 "USSR OTHRA DUGA 1,2 & 3" at: