The leaves are starting to turn here in Cumbria heralding the early onset of Autumn. The recent strong winds which are a usual part of the October/November-ness came a little early courtesy of some long-suffering hurricane. This season sets me off making good the mess I’ve usually made of things over the summer. Ignoring my plans and good ideas is a summer thing and now its time to knuckle down and get on with the winter projects. One is the lightweight rotator, the other which I’ve kept a bit quiet is learning Morse..The code….CW.
I don’t subscribe to the premise that if you don’t know the code you’re not a proper ham. I’m a little more liberal, but, as an old Class B licence holder it was the morse part of the exams that put a shiver down my spine. The time has come to make amends. Its 20 years since I sat the RAE next year and although I had a long time in ‘radio wilderness’ its time to put CW on the list of things to do / learn.
I’ve picked a bad time as my Company have decided to put me on an MSc but I think the practice will help me to switch off from work. I’ve downloaded an application for my Android phone called Morse CT. It’s not had the best of ratings and yes the audio and ‘key response’ is a bit sluggish but hey its free and maybe it’ll get better. But simply put for my novice ability it seems fine. I’ve set it to 15 wpm and will learn as I go along. the ability to tap the screen to repeat the characters it a winner for me.
Rightly or wrongly I’m learning the alphabet first, then the numbers, then punctuation and then finally it’ll be words. I use my half hour lunch break to practice the characters and add in a new one each time I get to 100 correct responses in transmit mode. I’ll repeat the method for receive and hopefully that will be a lot quicker and a bit more fluid.
This could be a long process but so far 2 sessions and 8 characters learnt. I think the learning curve will be a bit slower as I get further into the process.