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copy with one hand & send with the other

Sep 13th 2014, 18:49


Joined: Apr 4th 1998, 00:00
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
The following is written for a right-hander but is a mirror-image of what a left-hander can do.

A right-handed writer can learn how to send code with their left hand, and it is not hard to do. For instance, I am a right-handed writer and a graduate of US Army Signal School where I learned how to copy and send with just my right hand, many years ago. OK, that worked well when we students had a desk in front of us to copy and send on, but after graduating Signal School the Army pulled a switcheroo on us. We then had to learn how to operate a CW radio while sitting in a jeep, or in the back of a truck or somewhere out in the boonies where there were no desks at all to copy and send on, usually just a clipboard or whatever was flat enough to write on and that caused all sorts of problems in juggling back and forth between a pencil and a code key. Now, the code keys, the straight keys that we were using, were mounted on a big steel clip that clipped onto an operator's upper leg, just above the knee, and that arrangement made the situation at least halfway manageable. But what I learned was that it worked much better with the pencil and clipboard placed on my upper right leg while having the code key clipped onto my upper left leg, so that way my left hand could keep the clipboard from shifting around on my right leg while I wrote with my right hand, and then my left hand could move very easily to the code key on my left leg. And sending code does not require any difficult hand coordination, as with a straight key it is just an up or down movement and with a bug or paddle it is just a side to side movement, nowhere near as complicated as writing the letters of the alphabet. Really, it is much easier to do than you might now believe, and I am NOT the first person to have learned how to send with my non-writing hand, as other Army operators learned how to do it for the same reason that I learned how to do it. Anyway, they passed that trick on to me and so let me now pass that same trick on to you. Yeah, it is a bit awkward at first, but with not all that much practice it will come to you quickly. And that trick works just fine on a desk top, too.

Let me add that these days I am learning how to copy WITHOUT using pencil and paper, although I still do keep pencil and paper handy because my memory and Swiss cheese have a lot in common! ;-)

Sep 20th 2014, 16:16


Joined: Apr 23rd 2007, 09:36
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
Hey tuulen.

I'm lucky because I naturally write with my left hand, and send CW with my right hand. It makes for very fast changeovers hi hi.

Best 73, Mark.
Jul 11th 2015, 02:09


Joined: Apr 4th 1998, 00:00
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
Having fractured my right wrist a couple times from roller skating, those wood floors are not forgiving when falling, I had to learn to write and sign my name left handed while my right wrist healed (back in the day when credit/debit cards were not as proliferated as they are today, when checks were used). I can copy to paper with my left hand but not as fast as with my right. These days I use a laptop with plain text editor, such as gedit (I'm a Linux user) and type in what I copy because I can't write or print at my comfortable copy speed.

A few years back, before I could copy any where near the speed of one of my CW mentors (Bill, WB9LBI) I watched Bill sending with his left hand and copying with his right. I am still learning this when the code is send slow enough.

Best 72/73, Terry

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