Posted by: GW7AAV | November 27, 2010

Free eBook on Learning Morse

Learning Morse has been over the years a chore for most radio amateurs. For some it was a means to an end and yet for others it has instilled in them a great passion and there is nothing more infuriating to someone like me who has got close but fallen by the wayside to be preached at by those that love CW.

It is true that since the dropping of the code requirement more people than ever are keen to have a go. The access to the HF bands for many former B class licensees has made them realise just what they were missing. CW gets further and when conditions are bad it still gets through when SSB fails. A good CW operator can even beat digimodes with error correction in poor conditions because the imagination lets a human being fill in the gaps, although if predictive texting type techniques are employed the gap is narrowed.
There is lots of advice on the Internet and in books about learning the code and now thanks to the generosity of Carlo Consoli, IK0YGJ his book ‘Zen and the Art of Radiotelegraphy’ is available free to down load as a PDF file here in both English and Italian.
My thanks to Thomas AB9NZ for bringing it to my attention via his blog ‘The Radiotelegrapher’ , which is essential reading for all hams not just the bass pounders of you out there despite only having been online 15 days. Thomas says of the book… It’s a beautiful piece of work. I especially enjoyed his study of “amateur telegraphy from a linguistic perspective” where he poses the question “CW the Esperanto of the third Millennium?”. The book is packed with methods and exercises to help the beginner learn the code. Mr. Consoli then raises the bar and teaches the reader how to shed his limits and become the code


  1. Steve, Thanks for the very kind words. If in my exuberance for the code I get preachy please come over and beat me up. I enjoy and encourage the Morse, but never really understood the code rapists that wanted to force it on others. You’re an incredibly skilled and prolific blogger, so of course I added CQHQ to my blogroll. Tnx es 73 de Tom, AB9NZ

  2. Tom, I think anyone who is truly enthusiastic about anything, and CW seems to attract one or two, will over do it if they think you are interested in whatever it is they are. I tell them that my desire to become competent is only outweighed by my unnatural fear, which manifests its self as shear panic when I get on the air, which is why I only have three true CW contacts in my log. I know if I had the time I could move on as I only got as far as I did when I was ‘confined to barracks’ for three months with a broken foot. Three hours a day and in the end I won the bet and I had learned the code and made three stumbling but true CW contacts. Unfortunately I was then back to work and did not see a key or hear any Morse for weeks. I may as well have never done it, almost back to square one . I know that the only way to beat it is to do nothing else and I just cannot bring myself to do it. One day I will crack it and it will all click and then I will without doubt be as exuberance for the code has you are.

    Glad to have you on board, good luck with your blog. Flattery will get you every where Tom and if you need me to beat you up the address where to send the airline tickets is on QRZ, but please give me time to get a new passport.

    Best Regards Steve GW7AAV

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