Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Straight Key Night

As always, I had a ton of fun on Straight Key Night. It was so good to hear so many signals that one actually had to go looking for a clear frequency! I wish it could be like that all the time. One would think that if so many folks had such a good time then they would want that to carry on throughout the year, no?

I ended up with 6 QSOs for the event. They were all nice. The folks that I worked were Jim N3JV, Hank K8DD, JIm WG1L, Mike W4KAV, Lynn WA2DAC, Keith K1Y/1.

I tried to say on and linger in each QSO as long as I could. Some folks wanted to hang around longer than others; but all the contacts were good No shorty "599 TU" types of contacts, which was great! I finally left the airwaves when my wife got home from work. Spending time with her to see the New Year in at Midnight was my A#1 top priority.

I used the 2006 Christmas Key from Morse Express that my lovely wife got for me for Christmas. I have a picture posted because I want to give you all a frame of reference for how really small this key is. Yes, that is it sitting on top of the cover of my Elecraft Hex Key. However, as tiny as it is, it is a trooper! It's designed in a way so that as you "pound" this piece of brass (actually it's gold plated), you are concentrating your effort right onto the center of gravity. The benefit of that is that there is absolutley no wandering or wabbling of the key around on the operating surface. I sent for over two hours with this key on New Year's Eve without any pain or fatigue. Maybe that's just the technique I use for sending; but I think the quality of this little gem had something to do with that.

I actually like the action on the 2006 key better than the 2005 key; but from now on, when my wife asks me what I want for Christmas, I'll have a ready answer for her. These small straight keys by LTA in Spain are the best!

My SKN report will be heading into the League soon. I will be getting a soapbox report in tonight or tomorrow on the ARRL Website. I really hope they get avalanched by SKN reports this year! All you FISTS, NAQCCers and SKCCers - get your reports in and more importantly, your Soapbox comments uploaded! The ones that are already up are excellent; but we need a ton more. Even if you only made one QSO, don't be embarassed - let the world know about it!

73 de Larry W2LJ

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