The thing is that I want to use the internal keyer, but do NOT wish to use the Iambic function on starting out. So the questions:-
1) can a single paddle be used with the internal keyer (if the Iambic fuctionality canot be disabled will it be a problem for a single paddle)?
2) can a twin paddle be used with the internal keyer without any Iambic function?
I would prefer the dual paddle route so I can try out Iambic keying when I get more proficient. I expect to find the twin paddle more comfortable in use due to the paddle pad spacing - so much so I was already thinking of ways I could make a wider pad should I get a single paddle.
Can I configure the 6300 to just be an oscillator for sending practice?
And yes, you can practice by turning the RF level to zero.
Yes, you can use the paddles in regular mode even though they're capable of iambic mode. I never really picked up the art of iambic although some say it's less fatiguing because your hand is making a gentle squeeze instead of the full motion of keying right and left paddles. Some guys I have known that were really good ops would slap the paddles halfway across the desk, but they still had well-timed very readable code.
There are some really high end paddles out there, like the Bengalis, that you can pay hundreds for. I would wait to see how well you like the paddle to start with before making a big investment. You can always sell a BY-2 if you decide to go with something else later.
Hope this helps,
Like you Guy I was away from radio for many years. I also find "iambic" features are not necessarily easier or as comfortable as a single paddle. Keep inserting elements due to the squeeze memory.
Built (cut down a bug) a paddle with a 1/2" well varnished wood handle for use with my tube keyer; I still put aside the Bencher when frustrated and move over to that 50 year old paddle.
Stroke it like making love to a lady and it responds beautifully! 60+ WPM was easy.
1) Yes (I do it with a Begali HST), Iambic is on here, otherwise you just generate dahs. Due to the lack of the possibility to key both contacts at a time with a single key, you will not recognize the Iambic mode. But it has to be active.
2) No. Please explain, what do you expect to happen, if you key with a paddle without Iambic modes. I think I get your direction of thinking but for other modes than Iambic, Single Lever or straight key, you need an external keyer. With an external keyer you can do other modes as e.g. ultimatic mode or bug mode.
My personal favourites:
Single lever solid state: 9A5N Single lever
Dual lever solid state: 9A5N Dual lever
Single lever analogue: Begali HST MKII
Dual lever analogue: Begali Expedition
Just crank down the power slider to set it to 0 to use the Flex as a practising oscillator.
If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me.
1) In SSDR, the Iambic button is really a keyer on/off button... ON, it's Iambic; OFF, it's a straight key. I leave iambic ON, and use a non-iambic paddle (Begali Mono), and all is well. Note: the Begali Mono has two paddles that move together on a single shaft, so the spacing "feels" like an iambic to the fingers, but there's no "squeeze." To me, this is the best compromise for someone who doesn't intend to use iambic.
2) I've also used my dual paddle (Bencher BY-2), ignoring the "live" Iambic function, and that worked fine, too. I found that I never inadvertently squeezed the paddles. The paddle spacing is a bit wider than the Begali Mono.
3) Code practice oscillator: Yes. Just leave "Breakin" OFF (in CW mode), and the sidetone works fine for practice.
Happy dits & dahs. ---Jim, KJ3P
I would love to replace it with a Begali or a Kent, or something else with ball bearings and magnetic dampening. But I can't see spending $300+ for a paddle right now. I have too many other items on my wish list! But Christmas is coming!
If you anticipate wanting to learn the true iambic style of 'squeeze' keying, and only want to buy one paddle, then it had better be an iambic (2-lever) paddle, because you will never do iambic modes with a single lever paddle. You can certainly use the double "iambic" paddle without squeezing - i.e. use it like a single lever paddle - assuming you have enough finger control to avoid inadvertently squeezing the two levers at once. It's pretty easy to use a double lever paddle that way and not squeeze it. I do have several double paddles and have used them this way - I never use iambic "squeeze" keying. A single-lever paddle just enforces this behavior technologically.
There have actually been several studies of the keying efficiency of iambic keying that show not much actual gain, if any. See, e.g., http://la3za.blogspot.com/2013/06/the-advantage-of-single-lever-paddle.html for an overview with pointers.
- Les, W9XC
Here is another keys and paddle and a suggestion for connecting them.
I have the Begali Sculpture paddle on the right plugged into the KEY jack on the front. The Sculpture Arrow straight key is wired up to the accessory jack on the back of the radio. With this arrangement I can leave the internal keyer ON (i.e. Iambic selected) and jump back and forth between the paddle and straight key without making any changes. This is handy and less error prone if you want to quickly QRS or like to work the straight key group. By the way, there is no cost to get a SKCC number and its an active and fun group.
I never got the hang of using the iambic modes but started out on dual paddles. I've never had any problem accidentally squeezing both paddles but that could be a good excuse for the occasional error ( hihi ). So the dual paddle is a good option either way.
Regards, Al / NN4ZZ
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
On more thing as I have you all here. I am confused by the CW upper and lower band settings. Why would I choose one over the other?
Mni tnx to u all.
As with many options, personal choice is behind this one. Some like the tone to increase as frequency is increased, and vice versa. Then with a 50Hz filter everything is the same (almost).
Then for those that like to be confused, there is the option of putting the filter across the carrier so two signals 1Khz apart sound the same!