Elecraft CW Net Announcement

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Elecraft CW Net Announcement

Good Afternoon,

Let's take a peek into the misty past; when the K1 was young while the
KPA100 was taking its own time to reach the market.  The Elecraft CW Net
began on June 6, 2002.  I picked the date to honor my then recently
departed uncle who was a paratrooper that day. It began with a few
responses to my shaky fist.  What better way to become proficient at CW
than to start a net?  Fools rush in ...  Over time there were more check
ins and the guidance of others.  Tom Hammond, N0SS, crafted much of the
net's framework and helped me by acting as an alternate NCS.  Tom lived
in central Missouri so he was inside my first hop on 20 meters.  He
would call those to the east as well as those too close to me.  I would
follow along copying each op he worked in turn.  When he handed net
control back to me he would run through the list but it was just to
check my copy.  Occasionally he would pass the net to an op in
Connecticut for another round of check ins.  Most of those I could not
hear so their list was mandatory.  We reached into Iceland, South
Africa, New Zealand, Hungary, Russia (from both directions), and a few
South American countries.

Things were fine until Tom became weaker from his illness.  He no longer
could act as an NCS.  No one took his place.  But then he had very big
shoes to fill.  Tom could copy CW at incredible speeds.  I think he
mentioned 60 wpm, he also said his fingers weren't up to that speed any
longer.  While I have never attained those speeds I have felt the
ravages of time effect my own fist. Tom's passing left a large hole in
the Elecraft family.  He had been one of the field testers for
Elecraft's first product: the K2.  He also helped anyone in the amateur
community who asked for his assistance.  He promised to help me with my
CW copy by providing a bit more 'ouch'.  Keeping the carrot just out of
reach is a great way to improve your copy speed.  Tom was offering to
take me past 30 wpm into the medium speed realm of the code.  He is
sorely missed.

Acting as an NCS is not too difficult.  Just call CQ ECN and be polite. 
Work those you can and thank them for their time.  Keep a list of call
signs and whatever else they think is important. Kids soccer scores,
dogs' names, grandkids, even new radio equipment.  Weather is a safe
subject; it allows those of us who rarely see the sun during the winter
to vicariously experience it.  When you no longer receive any response
to your CQ ECN (Tom's name by the way) pass net control back to whoever
passed it to you.  Send your list and any fills necessary.  Email is
fine too; this is not a contest so the "rules" are very lax.  I only
apply a few rules: have fun and be polite.  Tom placed a speed limit
rule on me too.  At or near 20 wpm and he would work the 'chicken fat'
operators :)

If you would like to help and you live in my first or second hop please
tell me and you'll get the NCS hat for a time.  It is a great way to
meet Elecraft folks and to work on your CW skills.

Please join us tomorrow on:

14050 kHz at 2200z Sunday  (2 PM PST Sunday)
  7047 kHz at 0000z Monday  (4 PM PST Sunday)


    Kevin. KD5ONS


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