PA3CLQ's Leuke Linken Nr. 499




For Ham-Radio-Stuf of XBS TELECOM sa , Lille - France take a look at:

You can subscribed for this magazine:



To Bill and others asking where I got my Tattoo Binding Posts....... they came from eBay...... here's the listing:

Mike, K5MP


QSP from SRS Surplus Radio Society - SEG



IMD is organized by the Cornish Amateur Radio Club each year on the weekend closest to Marconi's birthday of 25 April 1874


See u next year.......Editor


Confession of a HAM who did not see the light of the SSN in time at: , I think ?

I am sad to find such dismay and frustration from so many folks having difficulty mastering the cootie key. Let me say that I have been a ham for 61 years, and if anyone had a grooved fist it was I. But when I decided to take up the cootie key barely two years ago, I had no fears or trepidation, and with an open mind I stepped up to the challenge with a determination that this is really no step for a stepper. At first I built my own homebrew sawblade cootie as my trial horse before making any significant financial commitment. I buzzed around the web for any and all articles and uTube demos I could find, and with just a little concentration and considerable practice, I quickly overcame any doubts or fears and within two weeks I felt I had this tiger by the tail. It was really easy, and offered absolutely no reason for all the "frustration and weeping" expressed in this thread over the past few days. Let me see if I might help dry the sweaty palms, settle the queasy stomachs, and help shed some positive light on the subject. This is not worthy of all the negative commentary voiced here. Just follow what I have to offer below.

As an avid Cootie user and self-ordained but informal teacher of the art of Cootie keying, I think I have encapsulated in my QRZ page (fully re-edited this afternoon) a pictorial journey for me from straight key to the latest of commercial Sideswipers on the market and following that personal testimonial I have attempted to describe in detail what a cootie is, and from there to illustrate a collection of teaching aids from which you are encouraged to form your own best fit. I ask that you please review what I have presented there, including the various uTube demos., and please let me know where I might have fallen short. I will mention that some of you have received from me a significant piece of that narrative, but I ask you also to return to my QRZ page to put it In context with information you might not have seen.

As my last piece of advice I must say that you cannot master this art without lots of practice (at first suggested to be off air using a side tone monitor or code practice oscillator). Be patient, do not attempt to send at a rapid pace; practice by sending text found in a magazine or other available printed matter, and note that with practice will come speed. Speed is not the driving force, rather you are attempting to properly form the characters with alternating motion of the cootie paddles, and soon you will notice your speed will be increased..... Once you begin to feel the technique and can consistently send in practice sessions, then it is time to go live and make some contacts on the air... Again, go slow and don't push yourself to frustration while thinking you must keep up with the speed of the next guy.

Please don't get discouraged. This is not as difficult as you are trying to make it sound. Give it a new start with attempted lessons and let me know if you want more of my help. Oh, and for those members who struggle with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome I am told the Cootie is the least discomfort of all sanctioned manual keying methods. Also, if you struggle with a Bug either to form proper CW character sounds, or to control your speed, you too might benefit from a quick peek at what a cootie key is, and how it might be the right keying method for you.

Mike, K5MP SKCC#1537 SX3


Here is my wooden wonder.
It is made from a piece of cherry and has small caster wheel chair bearings in the pivot.


73 Don ve3ids

Attached is a picture of my new cootie.

Have had the material on hand for awhile, just needed the motivation to get it built.

Needs a lot of polishing yet but as I have never used a cootie before, let alone left handed, think I better tend to that first.


73, James/KB7LJP


I've attached a pic of my 3d printed cootie,

The base and fingerpieces are printed in PLA plastic, the lever is a typical hacksaw blade, and the contact hardware is brass.

I mounted it on a marble counter top sample, so it stays put pretty well.
Looking forward to a QSO sometime.



You can download files and instructions for printing this key at:
73, Mike N2HTT

Eventual TinkerCAD) and 3D printed. 
73, Tom W4TMW


Here is a much more convenient way to keep your keys in place, even fairly lightweight keys.

Get a Silpat® Nonstick Silicone Baking Mat.

Here’s a picture on this sight -

Not only do the keys stay in place but you can easily rearrange them easily.

Also the mat is very thin also.

For the record, this wasn’t my idea but I can find the email of the SKCC member who did.

To that member, thanks again, this mat works great.
73, Art, W2NRA

This works well for me.

Cut to size.


On YouTube there is a very good video of a practice method to improve your dots and dashes timing when using a Sideswiper.

The exercise is a bit monotonous, but practicing it will really help. 
Take a look at the demo.

Rich - W4RQ Amateur Radio: The Original Social Media


Here is the "Cootie Corner" thread (67 posts):

If you like, I can copy your Cootie User List into a sortable database table.

Very easy to do and maintain.

You could include additional columns for links and/or photos also, similar to the Members' Keys and QSL Cards databases below:
73, Drew AF2Z


Here a picture of my home brew cootie, named " black widow spider "



73 de ON4ADI, Paul.


Hello Friends.

Good to know SiteSwiper meeting places & Net times on Sunday

* Intercontinental net:
- 1500 and 1600 UTC on 14055 kHz,
QSY to 14349 kHz in case of contest QRM.
NCS is Jim, K3CKT, MD.
Depending on NCS' instructions, either:
- 1530 UTC on 21055 kHz,
QSY to 18088 kHz in case of contest QRM.
NCS is Med, CN8YR.
Or full hour sessions:
- 1600 UTC on 21055 kHz,
QSY to 18088 kHz in case of contest QRM.
NCS is Med, CN8YR.
* EU net:
- 1900 UTC on 3566 kHz.

* Region 3 net:

* Intercontinental net:

* EU net:

Have a nice day / week(end) gents, BCNU.

73, Yann, F5LAW

By OM Yann F5LAW SideSwiperNetGroup


73, from the town at the rivers "De Bergsche Maas" and "De Dongen" Geertruidenberg (800+ years city rights) at: 51.702211N 4.853854E

Editor Jan Pieter Oelp PA3CLQ



My simple website about Gigantic DF-Antennas

Part 1 "DF-Antenna Wullenweber Array"

Part 2 "DF-Antenna USSR Variants"

Part 3 "DF-Antenna USA Variant"

Next Part 4 "USSR OTHRA DUGA 1,2 & 3" at: