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Thursday, January 3, 2013

Arduino Does Straight Key Night

     Hope a good Christmas and excellent New Year. Here at WA6ARA we had a blast for Straight Key night . In the past I have used new keys, old keys and multiple keys. This year we celebrated SKN with a little twist. At Pacificon I purchased a hugh CW key, all made out of wood, about 3 times the normal size J-38. This isn't a QLF key but a piece of beautiful wood working, and fully functional. This was my main key for SKN.
But SKN can require the sending of CQ SKN for a considerable amount of time. Normally a programed keyer would do the job fine. But this is not in the true spirit of SKN, the use of the straight key. So, using a trusty Arduino board and a few lines of programming,  I solved the practical and ethical problem. The Arduino drives a model airplane servo. The servo is positioned such that it's arm presses down on a miniature J-38 key, thus sending the "CQ SKN". Also the miniature J-38, about half size, sort of balances out the larger size of the
hand key, and keeps the universe in check. I've enclosed a short youtube for your viewing enjoyment


Mike Herr
Home of The QRP Ranch

Our book: "SolderSmoke -- Global Adventures in Wireless Electronics" http://soldersmoke.com/book.htm Our coffee mugs, T-Shirts, bumper stickers: http://www.cafepress.com/SolderSmoke Our Book Store: http://astore.amazon.com/contracross-20


  1. I've been a ham for 40 years and keen on the key.
    Never heard of this one -I think its an add to get you to view the page.
    Successful too if it gets on Hackaday

  2. Great, Great and Great. Simply a Great idea!!!


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