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LCWO Discussion Forum [Atom LCWO Forum Feed]

This is a simple discussion forum for LCWO users. Feel free to use it for any kind of discussion related to this website.

Thread: Experienced operators: how did you learn SENDING out code?

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Posted: 2018-11-19 22:29
Maybe it's just me, but I just can't get my head around the fact that there are no tutorials on how to learn sending morse code. I mean, there are a few sending practice resources (the TX training page on this site being one), but nothing really giving an accurate and detailed step-by-step breakdown of instructions.

For example:

- What letters do you start with?
- Do you follow the same patters as you used when you learned how to decode?
- If it's true that one should learn to decode at relatively high speeds, so not to count dits and dahs, how can one not start counting again when beginning to transmit code?

I really hope I made myself clear. I posted the same question on other forums but nobody has really understood what I meant and maybe it's my fault.

Posted: 2018-11-20 16:39
Not at all your error.

In general learning to decode is the problem.
When you listen a lot to machine generated code, you know how it has to sound and you recognize anomalies in your own generated code with a straight key.

In the past you had the counting method, start very slow speed. ONEoneTWOoneTHREEoneONETWOTHREE is a character V. Capitals are key down, a ticking metronome was helpfull for pacing.

A good method to learn the rithm very slowly sending with a straight key.

When the speed increases somewhat above 5 wpm
you can sent synchronously with a known text with a machine generated text.

Because nowadays people often end up with paddles anyway they start learning with paddles. In that case there is an excellent way of learning Iambic B written in an article of K7QO


Posted: 2018-11-22 05:35
cwops.org has an academy course that includes some sending practice homework. I think they start with 3 letter words.

Posted: 2018-11-22 08:27
cwops.org has an academy course that includes some sending practice homework. I think they start with 3 letter words.

Thanks. Is the syllabus available for free?

Posted: 2018-11-23 09:00
For sending practice, try this:
1) Download fldigi and install it on a computer with a microphone.
2) Put fldigi in CW mode, and select the microphone as input.
3) Send practice phrases. There are many out there, but I'll put a few below.
4) Keep practicing until fldigi decodes you with no errors. If fldigi can understand you, any decent operator will find you a joy to work.

Practice Routine:
= + sk (dit dit)

Tips: You can send random words, abbreviations, punctuation, QSO phrases, prosigns, callsigns, anything really. Send from memory, don't send by reading something or looking at a cheat sheet. During a QSO it takes too long to write down what you're going to send before sending it, so don't practice that way. Learning to think on your feet is actually kind of difficult. Don't stare at fldigi while you send. Keep your eyes closed if you need to, only check your success rate at the end of the session. At first you may be pretty terrible at it. That's okay. Just keep plugging along.

ZUT es 73 de N2OW,

Posted: 2018-11-23 15:45
ryans - can you expand on step two ?
- - the second part - where is that setting ?

Posted: 2018-11-26 08:47
it's - configuration - audio - devices - capture.
- then set the freq for your key.
fldigi will have trouble in decoding you .. ..

Posted: 2020-12-10 06:34
Back in the 50's and 60's, when I was learning code, many CW coastal marine stations including WCC, NSS and WNU, could be easily heard on a shortwave radio that would tune from 2 to 22 mHz.
I would listen for hours,as each station had a tape looped marker, endlessly repeating their callsign and frequencies they were monitoring for all shipboard radio operators. After a while, I could copy and send in step with my key and buzzer set, these repeating transmissions. If my sending matched the perfect tape loop, I figured I was doing great! So: VVV VVV DE WNU WNU WNU - QRU? OBS? QSX 2/4/6/8/12/16/22 MC K, was my daily practice. Keying speeds were probably 16 WPM for these transmissions, typical suggested traffic handling speeds on the HF marine bands. Even more interesting was listening in, at night, on 500 kHz, the CW calling frequency...hundreds of ship radio operators on their keys...beautiful bedlem! Later, a mentor, W4EWN, gave me a set of war surplus 78 RPM phonograph records recorded for the Army Signal Corp to teach Morse operators. I had to set my turntable speed down to 33 and later 45 RPM to copy em' but after a few weeks, I was copying at full speed...and passed my 13 WPM General Class Amateur code tests with ease! Today, there are easier ways on-line to learn, I'm sure! 73, DE WA4A, Bob Truitt

Posted: 2020-12-30 02:05
The characters that you learn first are optional. There is no actual necessity to learn certain characters and not others. A person can work with a Dit or Dah (e or t) or a person can work with a character much longer, dit--dit--dah--dit (f) or dit--dah--dit--dit (l).

Using the Convert Text To CW option on lcwo.net, you can send to yourself several letters that you know in random order. Then you can add 1 or 2 more characters. You can send numbers too at the beginning. There are many tools and lists that you can use for sending CW to yourself. Here is one:

English Letter Frequency (based on a sample of 40,000 words)
Letter Count Letter Frequency
E T A O I M R ...etc.

Or you could use something like this for a lesson to copy. (However, I think beginners should divide such lessons into 4 lines of about 10 characters something like this:
Lesson 1
A T A R I T A I .
I A T R A I T A .
T I I A R A I T .
R A T I T R A I .

Mixing up characters is a job that the beginner can do. When that lesson can be copied, the beginner can add a new character or 2, Like:

Lesson 2
A F A R I F A I .
I A T F A I T F .
F I A R F I T F .
R A T I F R A I .

Lesson 3
S F A R I F S I .
I A S F A I T F .
F S A R F I T F .
R A S I F R S I .

Lesson 4
R F A R I F S I .
I A S F R I T F .
F S A R F I T I .
R A S I F R S A .
Notice the Period at the end of each line?
Period = dit dah dit dah dit dah Tells you that when writing the letters, it is time to start a new line. These are quick, short lessons of the type that can be done several times a day.

What you learn next is up to you. How about W?

Lesson 5
S F X R W F S X .
W X S F A I X F .
F S X R F I X F .
R X S W F R S X .

Lesson 6 with C
S F X R C F S X .
C X S F A I X F .
F S X R F C X F .
R X S I F C S X .

As you make progress in writing your own lessons, you begin to understand that you cannot memorize all of these. You play 1, 2, or 3 of them each day, and never repeat a lesson until you get beyond something like lesson #25. Then you can go back and repeat, possibly at a slightly faster speed.

How about this. Make a list of lessons, like 4 line lessons 1 through 25. Offer to share your list of 25 lessons with another person, if they will make a list for you to practice copying with
"Convert Text To Code".

Consider this:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0
As a copy lesson, that is not much fun. I would never work with that, but look what you can do with it.

Random 1 numbers

1 9 7 4 0 8 3 0 2 5 .
2 9 7 3 0 1 4 5 6 8 .
1 6 3 8 2 4 7 5 9 0 .
1 8 0 2 5 9 7 4 0 3 .

RANDOM 2 numbers
0 8 3 0 2 5 2 9 7 3 4 .
4 7 5 9 0 0 8 3 0 2 5 .
1 8 0 2 5 9 6 3 8 2 4 .
7 8 2 4 7 5 2 5 9 0 1 .

RANDOM 3 numbers
0 8 3 0 2 5 2 9 7 3 4 .
4 7 5 9 0 0 8 3 0 2 5 .
1 8 0 2 5 9 6 3 8 2 4 .
7 0 2 5 2 8 2 4 0 8 3 .

RANDOM 4 numbers
0 7 4 0 8 3 0 7 5 8 2 .
4 7 2 5 9 0 7 4 0 8 1 .
9 6 3 8 2 6 3 8 2 4 7 .
5 2 4 6 9 1 7 0 9 3 8 .


Here is a way to practice sending the characters that you know. l Find something printed as a paragraph in a book, magazine, or Internet page.
Go through the text and using your Morse Key, send every character that you see and known. Or, read the text in the forum of LCWO.NET and send each character that you know in one of the messages. You only need to send what you know.

After I had learned each of the letters of the Alphabet, I wrote a new series of lessons like the following:


y r q l ? , k z f j .
q / d g c y q 9 M .
g , k r l g , z d I f .
y L ? e q p / v 5 f .
g y f r k j u c q b 5 .

Group #2
v q , f / 9 w ? f 9 .
5 y 9 , r k ? / z q .
d p h j v q / f p r 5 .
L q 5 j v c 9 z q ? / f .
w f h q 0 j ? c l p .

Group #3
, t v q 5 j w p y z .
l g f / j 0 e r 5 g v t .
d p b h j v q / f p r 5 ; .
, u 9 L t c z ?q d / I .
q y 5 z l g p w f d 4 .

Group #4
w e j s d t o f M / r o .
c b v j a t z / h c l s x .
0 e s t p f 5 i k n t c .
a q c f l y l / u h ? d , .
h v d p c h / j l p / q .

Group # 5
g v f l j d / h r w .
i p 9 u 0 s d t f / .
c v d j a z / h c l s .
w j v 9 d 5 q g c k .
k y u l d h 0 / c p .

Group #6
e u n c j 0 I s ? t b .
u t v 9 p h j y s t e f .
c I e n I ? v q / f c q .
a s m a t p I c ? z e .
I t l d z s a ? / u d 0 .

Group #7
r g a 5 v ? h q L c .
/ w r h 9 , h t h / .
b I m L d 9 u ? q 5 f .
c d o r m g b , u I z .
o w l v b q 0 c ? h .

Group #8
q y 5 z l g p w ? f d .
w l v b q 0 c n n ? h .
g , k v j n k w t l g , .
z g d I f c q d e k n .

Group #9
g , z d I f k ? g b, u .
L q 5 j v c 9 z h q ? / f .
l g f / j 0 h r 5 g v t d .
0 e s t p f 5 I ? k n j c .

Group # 10
0 c s / p f 5 I ? k n j v .
g , k v l c / , z g d I f .
q y / 5 z l 9 p w ? f d .
w l v b q 0 c ? h 9 g .
Group #11
L q 5 j v c 9 z h .
q ? / f g , z c d k .
I f k ? g b f , u .
l q f / j 0 h c b r .
0 c b q 5 g f v m t .

Group #12
e u n c j 0 I s ? t b .
u t v c 9 p h j y s t f .
c I e q n I ? v q / f c q .
a q s c t p f I c ? z q e .
I t l d q z s a ? / c u t .
f d 0 k v 9 p u y q ? .

Group #13
d k n 4 n n t v j b f q .
q 9 / l f z h I c h 5 .
4 n f 5 t k v n t c f q .
q m c n t n q h 4 v d .
c k f / n j ? l , 5 k u r .

Group #14
q y 5 z l g p w ? f d .
w l v b q 0 c n n ? h .
g , b k v 4 n / t l g , .
z g d I f c q d e k n .
Another useful list to work with can be lists that can be found on the Internet for "most common English words". You can work with a list of 25 words or work with a much larger list such as "100 most common words".
You can even find lists like 100 Most Common Words in Morse Code" or "in CW" and so forth and so on. Here is one such list:


Posted: 2020-12-30 12:27

Ryans N2OW wrote in this thread: "Send from memory, don't send by reading something or looking at a cheat sheet."

I emphasize that I fully agree with that statement.

Posted: 2020-12-30 18:07
Ryans N2OW wrote in this thread: "Send from memory, don't send by reading something or looking at a cheat sheet."

Thank you nonagerian.
Perhaps it is necessary to recognize the difference between a person actually operating a radio with CW and a person learning how to operate a radio with a CW transmission.

After re-reading the initial post, I can specifically see the common "beginner" question about learning CW characters and asking about the order for learning them. This was the primary focus of my answer my friend.

I did not see the point and I think you may have misunderstood what I wrote. What I wrote is not specifically intended for "sending". Those lessons I offered are lessons which are to be COPIED and PASTED into the "Convert Text To CW" menu option on www.lcwo.net. In other words, those are bits of information for a person who wishes to know What---They--Can--Study---First.

Of course any person can send (as in practice sending) from something that is written.) I recognize the merits of the advisement for "...don't send by reading something or looking at a cheat sheet."

However, there may be a misunderstanding in another context. I do not agree that the advisement is intended to forbid all persons from ever practicing sending a character that they read from textual format. For example, a person may have a bit of difficulty in mastering the transmission of the number "4" or the question mark "?". In which case, that number or any other number may appear in a random text which shows a variety of numbers or characters on a page. Those can be read for "practice sending" with some kind of telegraphic key. Such a supposition about "cheating" introduces the idea that no person should ever practice sending what is seen on a printed page or some similar format. Is it really necessary to teach people that they are "cheaters"?
The distinctions to be made here are those between what a person actually transmits for long distance communication, and what is "transmitted" as practice for the purpose of learning by the development of muscle memory and mental memory.
Also, I find it difficult to agree that any method of study qualifies as "cheating". I think that such a characterization requires further explanation.
If there is a serious charge of "cheating" I think that to be fair to those learning, that the principle violated be objectively identified. Alternatively, if it is another person, rather than a principle that has been "cheated" I think that such person should also be objectively identified so that all persons interested in learning shall have a chance to see if they are guilty of "cheating".
I can recall a rather large assortment of chess lessons that rely upon a printed text to show both letters and numbers and punctuation and other symbols. Therefore, the proposition that persons reading a text are "cheating" serve for a misunderstanding of words like learning, practice, and sending or transmission.
ALL of the answers shown in this forum are "read" and are factually "transmitted" to mind and memory via what is read from written and printed material.
Is it to be concluded that all persons using the forum have "cheated" by not employing what they have already remembered or who are not spontaneously "transmitting" without using published information?
Personally, I think that many persons are very nervous in their first attempts to transmit. I think that a newcomer to the activity is completely warranted in having an outline of a standard QSO in hand to guide a transmission. After all, objections to such practices amount to little other than a criticism as though some critical financial, moral, or legal proposition is at stake. That is hardly recognizable as fact.

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