More real radio and Cyrillic morse

When I called Radcom VHF editor, David, G4ASR last weekend in the 144MHz AFS contest, it was fun when he replied “Good to see you doing real radio, Tim, don’t bother with the other stuff!”. Thanks for reading the blog, Dave!

There couldn’t be anything much more ‘real radio’ than 3.5MHz CW, could there? Last night Julie was out at a WI meeting (oooh – I haven’t mentioned her Etsy shop for a while – there are some lovely gifts for someone in your life – look out particularly for things she’s made featuring our home-grown lavender) and I switched on the HF radio for some ‘company’ as some people would the TV…

Looking around the low-end of 80m, I tuned from station to station to get a sense of what the band was doing and stopped on a CW ragchew to see who it was. My CW’s not quite as sharp as it used to be, but it’s not bad and I don’t miss much. But this QSO was getting me worried – I really couldn’t understand much at all. Fortunately all became clear when the callsigns were sent – it was a UA4 talking to a UA1. Of course, they were using Cyrillic Morse – hence it seemed like some of the characters might be familiar, yet weren’t! I always love to hear those Russian QSOs and on a winter’s evening, it’s surprising just how deep into the Asian continent you can hear if the band’s quiet.

And so it was until an expedition landed in the vicinity (ZL8X?) and all hell broke loose. Then, it was time to go and make a coffee…

Tim Kirby, G4VXE, is a regular contributor to and writes from Oxfordshire, England. Contact him at [email protected].

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