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Page updated Jan 25, 2016


A Morse code class has started on Jan 23, 2016 in Mesa-Phoenix, AZ on the 147.12 Repeater. Class handouts can be downloaded here.

The class is geared to the needs of those who check in, and just like last time, the schedule can be changed to a day or time that better suits the regulars who are participating. It is not too late to start the class, so please check in at 7 PM local time Saturday evening. If you are brand new to learning the Morse code, we will gear some class time to your needs as well. The class runs an hour or thereabouts.

Please feel free to use this site and its materials to conduct a Morse code class of your own.

Course Introduction

This course brings the necessary training to the radio amateur who wants to learn Morse code to be able to play in the bottom ends of the bands on HF, six meters and two meters. It contains a comprehensive coverage of all the 43 characters found in the old FCC exams, as well as some that were not included in either the exam or the Morse code training materials put out for the last 25 years.

Those 43 include the 26 letters of the alphabet, the 10 figures, plus seven punctuation marks and procedural signals: Comma, Period, Question mark, Forward slash (found on a computer keyboard on the ? key), and the End of Message, Double Dash and End of Work prosigns.

This course will include additionally the Wait sign, Invitation to Transmit (specified station only), in particular. These signs were in common usage but were not taught for the last many years, as materials were geared toward the "FCC 43." There are a few more symbols included in the study materials, such as an apostrophe, hyphen, semicolon and colon, which are not vitally important. There are the double quote and parentheses, as well.

This course also includes the @ sign, a Morse code character added to the International Morse code by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) back in May of 2004. It is now possible to send someone your email address without having to go through the "at" routine in the place of @.

Because training materials were all geared to the 43-character subset of the FCC examination, there must be hunreds if not thousands of amateurs who were required to learn the code for their license, who really don't know all of the code that was commonly in use in the decades before. That is shameful.

Course materials

Handouts for all students of Morse Code, and other Online Resources in one place

The handout for learning how to print the alphabet and numerals has been redone and revised in January 2016.

Class participants are urged to download these PDF handouts to take part in any class based on this site's resources. These handouts are mainly derived from other sources, as indicated within and below.

Class handouts

These sources were among the best found on the Web. I did find a nicer image than that rough-looking 1967 Navy training manual, but it had NO slashed zero.

Online Resources

Here are some online resources:

  • LCWO.net LCWO stands for "Learn CW Online."

LESSON PLAN for Learning the Radiotelegraph Code

Slowly things are taking shape! here's what's on deck so far:

A plan has been drawn up to organize the class into five lessons, each laid out on its own page:

  1. first to standardize a quick and efficient way of printing,
  2. second to introduce Morse code as a language of sound,
  3. third, to get the timing right,
  4. fourth to learn the characters and practice.
  5. And number 5, to introduce Q-codes which have the same meaning in every language, to promote communication and understanding among people of all cultures.
  6. A 1944 US Navy training video (Good quality video, by the way, brought in from YouTube, covers some about proper timing, but it shows the proper way to sit and handle the straight key. Sending Morse code by hand with a coin on your wrist, even!

Unfortunately, many communications aids that I started with when I got my license have not been provided to newcomers to amateur radio now for a number of years in teaching materials that have instead concentrated on the 43 characters covered by an FCC exam, and nothing more. This course aims to correct that in two pages starting with: Minimum character set for good CW operation

Once you have mastered the first three lessons, it is now a matter of learning the characters and gaining proficiency.

Next page: LESSON 1 — Learning (all over again) to print!