CW Morse Trainer Android App

Here’s an excellent free app to let you hear Morse Code, preferably through your earphones so your neighbors don’t look at you and roll their eyes, called CW Morse Trainer.  You can set your speed as well as waveform, qsb, spacing and dot-dash ratio but I only mess with speed.  You can listen to a QSO, hear a series of  more-or-less random English words, your own text mode, ebook mode, groups of five scrambled characters (i.e., not words from a real language), and callsigns.  I have improved a lot by using the Callsign mode because you have to keep your head ready for letters and numbers, plus an occasional “slash.”  I like it.

Get it from your Android Market and check them out at  They have a few other amateur radio apps that may interest you.


LxPedition Last Night

We had a pleasant QSO roundtable Thursday evening at 9:15 EDT at 3899.  I said that I would start at 3899 and go down 3kc fm there till I find a quiet spot.  What I meant was to find a freq not in use and 3899 was not in use but it was not quiet.  Plenty of QRN to go around, thanks to normal summer noise augmented by thunderstorms in the Southeast.

Bill, KB4KFT, was first to ck in, from Duluth, GA.  Then Billy, KI4KGK who was 55 most of the time.  Next came Bobby with 600w, W4MAA, loud and clear.  I found he is using a Heathkit SB-221 and using it well.  I have an SB-200 that I cannot get to work so I plan to ask Bobby for advice.  Jason, K1OGR, chimed in at 58; he and I have talked on 2m in Atlanta and he told me about LxPedition and we had also talked about BuddiPole with John, KI4ESV that morning.   Finally Bill from Buckhead, KM4LS joined us at 58 and a Maryland station tried to enter but I couldn’t hear him altho the folks in Atlanta could.  My signal reports were 57-58 most of the 30 minutes we talked.

We talked about rigs and antennas, QRN, and an upcoming hamfest in Waynesville that KB4KFT wants to attend.  We had a variety of antennas represented: mine is OCF dipole, Bill’s is a G5RV (but he spoke of a field day special 80m antenna 5′ at the apex; I want to hear how that works), someone else had a phased array and yet another had a vertical loop.

This was a fun experience for me and next time I’ll give everyone a week’s notice instead of just 12 hours and look for more check ins.

Here’s a view of Misty Mountain Cabin.

73, Wayne

LxPedition Thursday nite

I will attempt a LxPedition Thursday nite 9:15pm on 75m from my cabin in western North Carolina.  I’ll start at 3899 and go down 3 kHz until I find a quiet spot, calling CQ Lxpedition as I go.  Will be running 100w into OCF dipole at 2,000 above msl.  Jackson County, NC, if you collect counties.  Go to for pictures of operating position.  Hope to work you tonite!  73, Wayne k4wk, @k4wk on twitter.


Just set up this station.  Connected to a multi-band OCF dipole in the trees on a hillside at the edge of the Great Smokies, this is a great QTH on a cool summer evening.  Cabin is at 2,000 ft elevation.  Even though surrounded by higher hills and mountains, was able to work France with ease, as well as California and New England.  Located in Jackson County, NC, grid square EM85; let me know if you need this county or grid.

k4wk/p operating position at Misty Mountain screen porch

Nifty electronics reference program for Droid phone

This afternoon I was out in the garage using a new but very cheap ($10) multi-meter I had bought at Dayton a few weeks ago.  Decided to test its accuracy by ohming a few random resistors but I didn’t feel like going back in the house to dig out a resistor color code table but as I haven’t memorized the color codes, needed a reference.  Searching “resistor color code” on the Android Marketplace brought up 12 results, five of them free.  I read a few reviews, then downloaded the “free with ads” app called ElectroDroid as it had many more features than just resistor color code.

It is way cool!  For the resistor color code, an image appears of a resistor with columns of colors beneath it.  Use your menu button to select how many bands there are on the resistor in question, then touch the appropriate colors from left to right and presto, your resistance value is displayed.

The only hard part is interpreting the colors on a resistor compared to the bright shiny colors on the app.  My carbon resistors are all old and I don’t know if colors have faded or if purple was a lot pinker in the vacuum-tube past but once I got the colors right, I got the resistance right.  Check out ElectroDroid at, or more simply,