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LCWO Discussion Forum [Atom LCWO Forum Feed]

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Thread: 20/8

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Posted: 2014-09-04 06:52
I practice at 20/8
I have been told that this is not real cw. truly if I were to send a cw message at 20 I would get a return or answer at 20wpm. I cannot write that answer at that speed. I am not sure anyone can write cw at 20/20. One would need to copy in there minds. Again, listening at 15/12. I find that one started to hear dit's and da's so much that it is hard not to count. I never intended to stay at 20/8. I felt that after a bit of time I could move up to perhaps 20/12. But this is not real cw.
I am wondering if this is not a wast of my time. I have been working at this for 1.5 years overall. I wasted a full year trying to do this counting dit's and da's. I have spent the last 5 months learning this from sound alone and doing great. But I will never be able to use a pin and paper to copy at 20/20. I am wondering if this can ever be done.
On this very sight I have heard it seems that only a very few can learn to do this at a good speed above 20. I have also heard that no wants to talk to you at 15/15. This is way faster than I am now. I have to say. I am not sure what to do now. Jumping off of a cliff and expecting to fly is not very realistic. After hearing that I am not doing real cw I feel that I will never be able to do this. Sure, I feel I can go the rest of the way at 20/8. I am on lesson 21. But this will not teach me to send and receive real cw.

Posted: 2014-09-04 09:47
It is not so bad.

Please place a summary here or a copy of your reference, so that readers here, at least I, are able to react more precisely.

Posted: 2014-09-04 10:23
20/8 is fine for learning all the characters so just keep at it.

Under no circumstances be put off by people who report that they leaned morse in a in a couple of days and took a fortnight to get to 25 wpm etc etc

During a QSO the faster operator should match the slower. If they won't, just move along . . . they don't care , neither do you.

2 (or more) years learning morse part-time is not a-typical for ordinary people.

You could increase your practice time by utilising some "waste" time ( eg. transport wait time, waiting for your order to arrive )

"Morse" road signs, notices, bill boards etc,
repeat the sound back to yourself a few times.

I think you will need to hear the code rather than just "listen in your head", but that might just be me . . .

Posted: 2014-09-04 15:55
Lynn, let me share my experience. Like you, I worked myself through the 40 lessons here, but I did worse: I had to throttle down to 18/6 to avoid frustration. When I made it to lesson 40, I gradually pushed it to 18/10 and then at the advice of Lea reduced the character speed and increased work speed slightly, but at 16/12 my time was up - I had fixed myself the goal to finish until christmas, when I would receive a CW key - and went on the air.
The first contacts were catastrophic, I was nervous, sweating, lost it within 30 seconds, turned off the rig ashamed, and was totally exhausted after my first completed QSO. That was on christmas 2013. It is not true that people will not want to have a qso with you if you are slow; I found most operators slow down for you if you ask for QRS, CW ops are a friendly and corteous crowd. Today I am on CW QSO number 980, I want to break the 1000 this weekend. I still give at 15wpm, I still cannot copy everything if people go even slightly above 15wpm, but the QSO routine (there is sort of a template which greatly simplifies things for newbies, email me if you need more information on this topic) which most operators comply to allows to complete the contact.
And now even more good news: Going through the 40 lessons here on LCWO takes discipline - I made three failed attempts before I finally decided to persevere. But once on the air, the whole thing no longer seems like work, it actually becomes fun.
I am not saying that you'll be a proficient CW operator immediately. I just decided to start a new morse learning campaign (my new job gives me the opportunity to commute a lot, so I'll put that train time to good use), from september to christmas, with the objective to have solid copy at 16/16, maybe 17/17. I'll go for 20 in 2015, 25 in 2016 - and have fun at the same time. Do you already have your licence? Drop me a line if you need more information.


Posted: 2014-09-05 13:05
Hi Lynn,

Just proceed, you will make it.

Posted: 2014-09-05 13:17
I made it in 4 years to 5/5 so go on!

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