Learning Morse Code (CW) The Best Way
Back in 1976 I sat in a class room full of students listening to tapes and an instructor on a CW bug. When I was 14 yrs. old learning CW was fun and exciting, but we can do better now.
Learning Morse Code – What’s The Best Way?
IMO, take an online class with an instructor. If you want to get better I highly recommend CW Academy. Take any one of their classes. Their proficiency test will help you find the class that is suitable for you.
You’ll get hands on experience (lessons and homework), a lot of useful information and live instruction through Zoom.
My Zoom classes were twice a week for 8 weeks. It’s a commitment, but very well worth it and you’ll be a CW operator when the class is done.
Getting By After The Stroke
There is nothing wrong with slow speed CW, but I wanted to improve and I was hoping it would improve my memory too.
I was always stuck between 13 and 16 WPM before the stroke, but after my stroke it was way down. I could remember the alphabet and a few other characters, but putting together words and phrases was impossible.
My goal was 20 WPM and being able to head copy (just jotting down a few words here and there.) Longterm my goal is 25 WPM and CWops membership.
Some New Things I learned From CW Academy
Learning CW and becoming proficient takes:
- Practice, practice, practice – never miss a day working or listening to CW. This is a must for me. *NEVER miss a day*
- Muscle Memory – Practice sending. My muscles are remembering and sending characters becomes automatic. The stroke affected that too.
- Acquire “instant recognition” of characters and words. Since the stroke I had lost that. It is imperative!
In just 8 weeks, my memory has positively improved. I still make mistakes when sending CW, but it is much better.
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Please stay in touch and best 73,
Thanks for this information Rich. At age 71 I too struggle with memory issues and had similar CW learning experiences at age 15. The CW academy sounds like a great idea to me. Going to give it a try.
Great to hear from you! GL and Vry73!
Great post Rich. And your experience with CW Academy and overall is very encouraging. Thanks for sharing the experience.
Great to hear from you and thanks for commenting here. GL and Vry73!
What about a total beginner? I know zero CW right now. But I want to learn. Would you still recommend cwops.org as the best option for me? 65 years old and have never tried to learn CW.
Thanks Rich and keep the posts coming. Whenever I try something new with my Icom rigs. My first step is “see if K0PIR has something about this”. You are a valuable resource sir. Much appreciation. 73
It’s nice to hear from you and thank you for commenting here. Yes, CW Academy has a beginners class.
Beginner – Limited or no prior experience with Morse Code
Learn Morse Code characters (letters, numbers, and some punctuation)
Learn to head copy and send Morse Code
Learn on-air protocols of a basic QSO
Use skills for on-air basic QSOs
Thanks again and Vry73!