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October 2014 Cartoon Caption Winner!

11/8/2014 08:30 AM EST
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mhrackin
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Re: Congratulations!
mhrackin   11/15/2014 1:45:17 PM
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Absolutely!  He's posted photos of some recent shows on riggy.com

Susan Rambo
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Re: Congratulations!
Susan Rambo   11/14/2014 11:50:09 PM
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@mrackin, thanks for this. I'm willing to bet your brother has performed at the Maritime Museum in San Francisco aboard the Balcutha.

zeeglen
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Re: Congratulations!
zeeglen   11/13/2014 9:54:19 AM
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Then there was the practice of turning a 3-letter callsign into a rather crude joke - especially if the middle character was 'F' (such as my call VE3PFI). The phonetic alphabet uses 'Foxtrot' to represent 'F', usually abreviated to 'Fox'.  I won't go into detail, but my sons had a lot of laughs with the first word 'Papa'...

mhrackin
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Re: Congratulations!
mhrackin   11/13/2014 9:33:46 AM
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For my first call, K2UWN, I used "under water nudist."  As I mostly used 6 meter band on AM voice (just below TV channel 2, the ABC affiliate in my area), I had my share of TVI issues, but never got a complaint about my language!

Stargzer
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Re: Congratulations!
Stargzer   11/12/2014 6:27:28 PM
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My high school biology teacher back in 1965, Fr. Mike, was K3UFS, which he pronounced in his own Phonetic Alphabet as "KILO THREE UNIDENTIFIED FLYING SAUCER."  It sometimes caused some confusion when he spilled over onto the audio portion of the neighbor's TV Channel 2.

mhrackin
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Re: Congratulations!
mhrackin   11/12/2014 12:20:50 PM
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@zeeglen:  " there were mechanical sideways keys that formed the dits with a vibrating metal reed."

I had a Vibroplex one (still buried in my basement??).  I built a couple of different electronic keyers and modified the Vibroplex so I could use it as the paddle for the keyers.   Once I got to the point of being able to send with this at "good" speeds (>20wpm) I realized there was no point in doing so, as the "other end" would respond at the same speed, which I could not decode!  So I reverted to my ancient WW2 surplus J-38 key (still have it, modified with s poker chip to improve the "grip").  IIRC, it cost me $1.00 at a surplus shop in the old NYC "Radio Row."

zeeglen
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Re: Congratulations!
zeeglen   11/12/2014 12:03:39 PM
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@Mhrackin Morse code much faster than the required 13 wpm for the General/Advanced license

In Canada the required speed was 10 words-per-minute for the Amateur license; after a year one could retest at 15 wpm for phone privileges with the Advanced Amateur license.  Applicants had to be at least 15 years old, a turn off for younger kids who were interested in radio.  I once was VE3EUK, VE4GC, VE3PFI, VE3RZ.  Got Morse speed up to 20 wpm.  I've heard that old time railroad telegraph operators could actually do 60+ wpm after many years of practice.

In addition to the standard brass code key (from where the hamspeak 'brass pounder' comes), there were mechanical sideways keys that formed the dits with a vibrating metal reed.  Then there were electronic keyers such as the Heathkit HD-1410 which automatically formed repeating dits and dahs depending on whether the right or left paddle was pressed sideways.

I once made the mistake of suggesting (during a design meeting) that the software guys should flash a front panel fault LED in Morse instead of counting a certain number of flashes to indicate each fault code.  They all looked at me like I was crazy...

mhrackin
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Re: Congratulations!
mhrackin   11/12/2014 11:23:31 AM
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@zeeglen: " So those who wanted to sent text faster...."

Several of the ham terminal programs had a built-in Morse option!  Too bad for me that the FCC frowned upon using one of these for the code test.....

mhrackin
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Re: Congratulations!
mhrackin   11/12/2014 11:14:55 AM
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@zeeglen: "A common practice phrase for Morse learners to develop timing (aka a 'fist')..."

BTW, I'm W4LGN.  First licensed as KN2UWN back in 1958 IIRC.

Unfortunately, I was never able to quite master copying or sending Morse code much faster than the required 13 wpm for the General/Advanced license; to this day I'm still one of the very few Advanced class licensees left.  My personal edition of "the hump" (the point that you stop hearing dots and dashes, but "hear" the letter they represent) was about 15 wpm, and I never got past that.  Now that the Morse requirement for licensure has been consigned to the dustbin of ham history (alas), I may try to upgrade at Hamvention!

My best friend in high school and engineering school was K2PTI; he had an absolute knack for Morse, and routinely had QSOs (contacts for the uninitiated) at speeds north of 40wpm!

mhrackin
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Re: Congratulations!
mhrackin   11/12/2014 11:01:52 AM
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@susan:  "it's amazing how many words in English originate from sailing ships and maritime trade"

Interesting you should mention that; my brother is a professional musician in Northern California (now that he's retired from his "day job" he's full-time+++ in his music and hiking/photography). His specialty is "music of the sea," largely based on the English and Irish traditions, and his primary instrument for many years has been the traditional maritime music instrument, the English concertina.  I've learned quite a bit about that "lingo" occasionally attending some of his concerts and "community sings" over the past 35 years or so. 

If you're interested, try riggy.com for more.

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