A couple of Keys

Homebrew Key

MFJ-564 Iambic Keyer

Two of many! (G3YCC)

Here are a couple of keys in use at this QTH.

The top one was made for use with small portable rigs and is made in a white plastic telephone connector box, using a scrap of PCB material, a knob and a few nuts and bolts. The nut and bolt arrangment in front of the knpb is for gap adjustment, with the nut soldered to the PCB and a locking not used. A scrap of Formica is used as a base. The 'live contact' is hidden under the PCB in this scanned picture, which I hope will illustrate how it was made. It works well and costs virtually nothing!

The other key, or rather keyer is the MFJ-564 (that firm keeps cropping up in my web pages and honestly, I have NO commercial connection with them!). Ths beautiful little keyer unit is built on a heavy chrome base and is fully adjustable. I understand it bears resemblance to the more expensive Bencher. Being a keyer or paddle unit, it does need the associated electronics to provide keying, such as is in-built in modern commercial gear.

I use these two keys as illustration of the two ends of the spectrum, one with no cash outlay, the other not so. Both are in regular use at this station and both send CW very well (depending on the mood of the operator!).

Frank, G3YCC.

Click here to return to first page