‘Meetin’ up’ With Hiram Percy Maxim’s Key
Folks who join in on the Straight Key Century Club’s Weekend Sprintathon in March are in for a treat. Several staffers at the American Radio Relay League headquarters in Newington, CT, will be acting as tag-team operators, running W1AW as the special bonus station for the event.
And in keeping with the club’s aim in perpetuating Morse code sent with straight keys, bugs, and side-swipers, the operators will be using Hiram Percy Maxim’s spark-gap key.
Truth to tell, you probably won’t be able to tell the difference between that and any other straight key whose arisanal code you hear. But, hey, it’s still a blast.
The event’s theme is QRP — stations running 5 watts or less are worth bonus points to folks who work them (and by logical extension, to each other as well).
The event runs from 1200 UTC on March 9 through 2359 UTC March 10. Although that’s a 36-hour stretch, participants can operate for no more than 24 of those 36 hours. This is a somewhat casual event for many members. Some drift into and out of the event, operating as time allows. Others with contesting in their DNA tend to go full bore.
Contester or not, fast speeds or slow, you’re welcome to take part.
If you intend to submit scores, you’ll need to use a straight key, side-swiper, or bug. No electronic keyers.
For more information, visit the event’s website. Details on the bonus scoring for March will be posted by the weekend. But the page also includes basic information about these monthly events that newcomers may find helpful to review.
How do I know when the bonus scheme will be posted? I’m the event manager!