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experience with CW and settings

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experience with CW and settings

KC6CNN
I am looking for someone with more experience than me with using the K3 on CW.
I have my K3 set to about 75 percent RF gain, and the width set to around 300.
ATT is off and Pre is off I do not have the dual filter on, and no afx on. I can spot and decode signals if they are strong. If they are weak then I can only decode with my ears. The THR setting when you hold down the CWT button is set on 3. If I set to auto is just sits there and runs jumble letters across the vfo b screen.

Any help with good setting I can try would be appreciated.
Thanks
Gerald - KC6CNN
KC6CNN - Gerald
K1 # 0014
K3 # 6294
KX3 # 757
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Re: experience with CW and settings

Nr4c

My experience with CW decode is:

Try setting the THR to 2.  Now, with the CWT enabled press the SPOT button and the little signal marker should align with the index mark.  And, the marker should flash in step with the audio CW signal.  If it stays on too much, set THR up to 3, or vice versa,  If you can’t find a THR setting that is right, set it to a setting that keeps the little marker ON too long, and adjust RF gain CCW until the marker keeps step with the CW audio.  Yu should get good decode at this setting.  Decode will only work if the receiver is tuned spot on to the signal and the marker is flashing every dit nd dah.

…bc nr4c

> On Sep 24, 2015, at 6:09 PM, KC6CNN <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> I am looking for someone with more experience than me with using the K3 on
> CW.
> I have my K3 set to about 75 percent RF gain, and the width set to around
> 300.
> ATT is off and Pre is off I do not have the dual filter on, and no afx on. I
> can spot and decode signals if they are strong. If they are weak then I can
> only decode with my ears. The THR setting when you hold down the CWT button
> is set on 3. If I set to auto is just sits there and runs jumble letters
> across the vfo b screen.
>
> Any help with good setting I can try would be appreciated.
> Thanks
> Gerald - KC6CNN
>
>
>
>
> -----
> KC6CNN - Gerald
> K2 # 5486
> K3 # 6294
> KX3 # 757
> --
> View this message in context: http://elecraft.365791.n2.nabble.com/experience-with-CW-and-settings-tp7608260.html
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Re: experience with CW and settings

KC6CNN
In reply to this post by KC6CNN
Thank all of you both on list and off list that sent me info.
I am going to try these different settings and see which ones work for me.
I am a believer that the decoding in the head is the best, but after a long time of not using it, I am having to relearn code all over again. It is starting to make sense. hihi who said you cant teach a old dog new tricks.
Thanks again for all the help.
Gerald - KC6CNN
KC6CNN - Gerald
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Re: experience with CW and settings

Bob McGraw - K4TAX
In reply to this post by Nr4c
I agree with Bill's suggestions.  I do find the value of THR is somewhat
dependent on RF Gain.   Thus more atmospheric noise / static bursts the
higher value for THR.  In this case reducing RF Gain helps.  This
evening the RF Gain, hr on 80M, is setting between the 1 o'clock and 2
o'clock position or the first dot to the right of the 12 o'clock
position.    And yes do use the SPOT function to accurately tune the
receiver to the incoming signal.  Also I use Fast ACG for CW.

As to WIDTH I use 0.50 and SHIFT at 0.70 for CW.    With this and the
above, i get very few    T T ** E E E * E  in the display.

73
Bob, K4TAX
K3S s/n 10,163

On 9/24/2015 6:30 PM, Bill Conkling wrote:
> My experience with CW decode is:
>
> Try setting the THR to 2.  Now, with the CWT enabled press the SPOT button and the little signal marker should align with the index mark.  And, the marker should flash in step with the audio CW signal.  If it stays on too much, set THR up to 3, or vice versa,  If you can’t find a THR setting that is right, set it to a setting that keeps the little marker ON too long, and adjust RF gain CCW until the marker keeps step with the CW audio.  Yu should get good decode at this setting.  Decode will only work if the receiver is tuned spot on to the signal and the marker is flashing every dit nd dah.
>
> …bc nr4c


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Re: experience with CW and settings

k6dgw
In reply to this post by KC6CNN
I think your question is really related to the CW decode function rather
than using the K3 on CW.

I am probably 90% CW, ~3% SSB [Sweepstakes, NAQP's, and RAC's], and the
rest RTTY.  This is probably going to touch off a storm on the list, but
here goes:

I run the RF gain full clockwise, always, I don't even know if the knob
moves, never tried, never understood the "ride the RF gain argument."
The K3's AGC is superb and far better than anything I can do.
Admittedly, it is highly tailorable [maybe a tad too many settings], but
once I got it where I liked it, I haven't touched it in several years
[S/N 642 here].  True even when I had KF6T running 1.5 KW 1.7 km from
me.  I have the "stock" 2.7 KHz [I think] and a 500 Hz roofing filters.
  I could cuddle up to within 1 KHz of Jack and not hear him.

Preamp is on for 21 MHz and above, off below.  Attenuator is off for 7
MHz and above, on for 5, 3.5, and 1.8 MHz.  That configuration depends
some on your ambient noise levels, mine were moderate until we just
moved, now they're fairly low.

I copy CW the old fashioned way, but I have tried the decoder out of
curiosity.  Does well on moderately good signals with reasonable sending
habits.  A SNR of about 4 S-units seems to work fine.  Gets a little
sketchy with occasional errors [usually in key up periods] below that,
and pretty much fails if the SNR is around 1 S-unit or less.  I can
still copy the signal fine at those levels.  I can't remember what I
used for THRESHOLD, but as I remember at one number nothing decoded and
at the next one it decoded fine.

The horizontal scroll did tend to cage my eyeballs after a bit. :-)

My K3 was essentially fully operational right after assembly, using all
the default settings.  I set up my TX EQ using advice from K9YC, and I
often get unsolicited "great audio" comments in the 3% SSB time.  I lost
most of my hearing many years ago, and I've got the RX EQ simulating the
response of my hearing aids [as much as it can], which helps a lot.

73,

Fred K6DGW
- Northern California Contest Club
- CU in the 50th Running of the Cal QSO Party 3-4 Oct 2015
- www.cqp.org

On 9/24/2015 3:09 PM, KC6CNN wrote:

> I am looking for someone with more experience than me with using the K3 on
> CW.
> I have my K3 set to about 75 percent RF gain, and the width set to around
> 300.
> ATT is off and Pre is off I do not have the dual filter on, and no afx on. I
> can spot and decode signals if they are strong. If they are weak then I can
> only decode with my ears. The THR setting when you hold down the CWT button
> is set on 3. If I set to auto is just sits there and runs jumble letters
> across the vfo b screen.
>
> Any help with good setting I can try would be appreciated.
> Thanks
> Gerald - KC6CNN

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Re: experience with CW and settings

KC6CNN
In reply to this post by KC6CNN
I found an article by Tony McClenny, N3ME that stated in part:
 
"CW Operation:
Wayne (N6KR) provides the following for anyone using the K3 to decode CW. "If you're seeing E's and T's, try using a much narrower bandwidth, 50-150 Hz, and turn on the noise blanker to reduce the level of impulse noise. I recommend using THR 2 or 3 for most signals, and THR 1 for very weak signals. These fixed settings usually work better than AUTO.
When there is no CW signal above the required threshold, you'll see random characters decoded"

I am trying some of the suggestions both on and off list.
I guess much depends on my area noise, antenna and there is not one size fits all settings.
I appreciate all the help and suggestions. It gives me things to try and see what works for me.
Now if I can get every one to zero beat me. hihi I call cq and it seems like the guys that have to really try to go slow for me get right on zero beat. Then there are those that I have to hit the rit button and seems like I spin the rit knob like crazy. So I am now being cautious and trying to zero beat each person I answer.
Thanks again everyone for all the help and suggestions.
TNX
Gerald - KC6CNN
KC6CNN - Gerald
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K3 # 6294
KX3 # 757
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Re: experience with CW and settings

Phil Anderson
In reply to this post by KC6CNN
Hi Gerald, KC6CNN,

Like most folks, I live in a suburban area so my noise level is high for
40 and 30 meters compared to those lucky folks living in rural areas.
Living just two blocks for a shopping center doesn't help! For me
turning on the AFT filter is helpful in reducing background noise (both
random and close in signals during contests); tuning is then a bit tight
but using three digits showing for fractions of a kHz makes it
manageable. I leave the RF gain fully on. To reduce noise levels in
general (which helps with CW too) I added a second receiver (SUB RX in
K3), attached it to a 20-meter Beverage antenna via the AUX antenna
input option and turned on the DIVERSITY MODE RX feature. With these
additions, the K3 does a better job with the CW decode as well, although
I seldom look at that any more. If you like, I'll send you a writeup on
my 20-meter beverage; I wound my own cores for the 450 to 50 ohm
matching transformer. To my surprise - with just 70 feet of back fence
room, I gained over 2 S units for S/N, as noted on my P3 with I hook up
the beverage to that for testing.

73, Phil, W0XI, Lawrence, KS.

>
>


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Re: experience with CW and settings

KEN-3
Phil,

don't assume rural areas are quiet!   I sometimes have S9+ power line
noise and we are rural (internet and TV via satellite) , nearest
neighbor is a half mile away and down over the hill.  I've traced the
noise to the power line feeding the farm (main breakers off, K3 running
on battery.)

Ken WA8JXM

On 9/25/15 12:41 PM, Phil Anderson wrote:
> I live in a suburban area so my noise level is high for 40 and 30
> meters compared to those lucky folks living in rural areas.

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Re: experience with CW and settings

Bob McGraw - K4TAX
Correct.   Just try living across the highway from the farmer that
sections off his pasture with an electric fence.  Plus when one is in a
quiet location every little peep, burp, ding, buzz and humm becomes
noticeable.  In other words "there isn't a free lunch".


73
Bob, K4TAX
K3S s/n 10,163


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Re: experience with CW and settings

daleputnam
hmmm.. I have an electric fence, keeps my own horses in.. and without the NB on, in the K2..  
I can check to see if it is turned on... or not.. especially on 160/80 and 40.. however.. with the loop,
directly above the fence... all I have to do is turn on the NB..  away goes the pop, pop, pop.
I'd have horses out all the time without the NB.

Have a great day,
 
 
--...   ...--
Dale - WC7S in Wy
 
 

> Correct.   Just try living across the highway from the farmer that
> sections off his pasture with an electric fence.  Plus when one is in a
> quiet location every little peep, burp, ding, buzz and humm becomes
> noticeable.  In other words "there isn't a free lunch".
>
>
> 73
> Bob, K4TAX
> K3S s/n 10,163
>
     
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Re: experience with CW and settings

Fred Smith
In reply to this post by KC6CNN
Ken I had the same problem several yrs. ago on my farm. It was a transformer I called the CO OP ant shaped it out for me, no more noise now one S Unit To 2 at the most.
Fred N0AZZ

Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone-------- Original message --------From: Ken <[hidden email]> Date: 09/25/2015  8:26 PM  (GMT-06:00) To: [hidden email] Subject: Re: [Elecraft] experience with CW and settings
Phil,

don't assume rural areas are quiet!   I sometimes have S9+ power line
noise and we are rural (internet and TV via satellite) , nearest
neighbor is a half mile away and down over the hill.  I've traced the
noise to the power line feeding the farm (main breakers off, K3 running
on battery.)

Ken WA8JXM

On 9/25/15 12:41 PM, Phil Anderson wrote:
> I live in a suburban area so my noise level is high for 40 and 30
> meters compared to those lucky folks living in rural areas.

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Re: experience with CW and settings

Al Gulseth-2
Two more items to keep in mind from another (semi) rural resident:

1) Power pole lightning arrestors can deteriorate or be damaged by a strike
and cause leakage/arcing. (Note that the noise from this can be intermittent
rather than constant.) That happened on a pole near me. I walked around the
neighborhood doing some DFing with a portable AM radio, identified a suspect
pole, and noted its ID number. When the power company crew arrived a lineman
climbed the suspect pole and immediately spotted a damaged part. The crew was
amazed that I was able to track down the fault that accurately. They also
thanked me for notifying them as it not only prevented a likely future outage
but also eliminated a system loss point. (From what they said leakage of this
type costs power companies more than you'd realize.)

2) Improperly designed (or "cheated" designs which claim to but don't meet
Part 15 spec) consumer electronics can throw RFI/EMI hash back out onto the
power feed and thus radiate it for quite a distance. I've been through the
drill of chasing that problem also.

73 es GL on finding your noise source, Al

On Fri September 25 2015 8:48:00 pm mfsj wrote:

> Ken I had the same problem several yrs. ago on my farm. It was a
> transformer I called the CO OP ant shaped it out for me, no more noise now
> one S Unit To 2 at the most. Fred N0AZZ
>
> Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone--------
> Original message --------From: Ken <[hidden email]> Date: 09/25/2015
> 8:26 PM  (GMT-06:00) To: [hidden email] Subject: Re: [Elecraft]
> experience with CW and settings Phil,
>
> don't assume rural areas are quiet!   I sometimes have S9+ power line
> noise and we are rural (internet and TV via satellite) , nearest
> neighbor is a half mile away and down over the hill.  I've traced the
> noise to the power line feeding the farm (main breakers off, K3 running
> on battery.)
>
> Ken WA8JXM
>
> On 9/25/15 12:41 PM, Phil Anderson wrote:
> > I live in a suburban area so my noise level is high for 40 and 30
> > meters compared to those lucky folks living in rural areas.
>
> ______________________________________________________________
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Re: experience with CW and settings

Phil Anderson
In reply to this post by KEN-3
Ken WA8JXM  etal

Yes; agree. I've been thinking about a remote site 15 miles from town
and purchasing a K3 MINI. My first task is to check out the area noise
and internet connectivity wise, if any. If those are good.....then maybe....

Hi & 73 Phil, W0XI, Lawrence, KS
>
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Re: experience with CW and settings

Brendan Minish
In reply to this post by daleputnam
Dale, if you use a handheld that can do AM on VHF or UHF and walk the
fence you will find it pretty easy to locate the bad joint(s). Once they
are fixed the noise goes away.

For Wire fences I put a little grease on the join after I remake it to
discourage future corrosion. For tape and string I leave tails sticking
out of the knot, burn these back a little with a lighter then twist the
now exposed wires together

We use an electric fence here, in part to stop the Horses Eating Coax

I had for a while an Icom 7800 and even a hint of fence noise would
drive the AGC insane and I spent much time mending my neighbors fences.

The K3 is Much less sensitive to impulse noise triggering the AGC and as
a result I now get less exercise and fewer electric shocks!


On 26/09/15 02:37, Dale Putnam wrote:

> hmmm.. I have an electric fence, keeps my own horses in.. and without the NB on, in the K2..  
> I can check to see if it is turned on... or not.. especially on 160/80 and 40.. however.. with the loop,
> directly above the fence... all I have to do is turn on the NB..  away goes the pop, pop, pop.
> I'd have horses out all the time without the NB.
>
> Have a great day,
>  
>  
> --...   ...--
> Dale - WC7S in Wy

--
73
Brendan EI6IZ
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Re: experience with CW and settings

daleputnam
In reply to this post by Phil Anderson


Have a great day,
 
 
--...   ...--
Dale - WC7S in Wy
 
 


> Date: Sat, 26 Sep 2015 11:32:42 -0500
> From: [hidden email]
> To: [hidden email]
> CC: [hidden email]
> Subject: Re: [Elecraft] experience with CW and settings
>
> Ken WA8JXM  etal
>
> Yes; agree. I've been thinking about a remote site 15 miles from town
> and purchasing a K3 MINI. My first task is to check out the area noise
> and internet connectivity wise, if any. If those are good.....then maybe....
>
> Hi & 73 Phil, W0XI, Lawrence, KS
> >
> > ______________________________________________________________
> > Elecraft mailing list
> > Home: http://mailman.qth.net/mailman/listinfo/elecraft
> > Help: http://mailman.qth.net/mmfaq.htm
> > Post: mailto:[hidden email]
> >
> >
>
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> This email has been checked for viruses by Avast antivirus software.
> https://www.avast.com/antivirus
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> ______________________________________________________________
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