Next BARS meeting: Wednesday, August 7, 7:00PM: Bruce Blain K1BG and CW Academy

Next BARS meeting – 7PM, August 7, 2019, 7PM: Bruce Blain, K1BG and CW Academy – an easy way to learn CW (Morse Code)!

I am very pleased to announce that Bruce is returning to speak again at BARS, this time about CW Academy. Many BARS members use and enjoy CW. If you have never tried it, please attend this session and see what is possible for you!

Did I just lose half my  audience? I dearly hope not. If you have only used voice your whole ham experience, you are missing out. I promise you will find this talk interesting. Please come and hear why people love operating using Morse code, and the kinds of things you can do once you know it.

Here are just some of the benefits of using morse code to communicate on HF:

More band! Adding activity below the SSB portions of the bands gains you over TWO MEGAHERTZ of places to play – 80% more!

More DX! Many exotic countries can be found on the air in the CW portions.

Less congestion! More CW signals can fit per kHz than SSB.

Easier QRP! A CW signal cuts through with low power operations compared to SSB. Rigs are simpler and CHEAPER, too!

It’s a secret code! Learning CW puts you in a fun group of people doing something DIFFERENT to communicate.

You CAN do it! CW is memorization of sounds, not dots and dashes. 26 letters, 10 numbers, and a handful of special characters. This is a finite workload. Patience and practice will get you there. You can even use keyer memories to get in on a contest while you still have your “training wheels” on.

You’ll meet new folks! Some hams stick around in the CW portions and never venture into SSB land.

Your rig already does CW! You might need to get a key, but that’s it.

You can get on CW before learning it! There are apps and computer programs to receive and even send CW by typing.

It is FUN!

And Tom, K1TW would like to remind you that there are many CW activities each week. Here is a selection:

  • Clubs that promote cw operations and contests such as “CWOPS; SOTA; SKCC; County Hunters”  keeping 14.050-14.062  busy all day long.
  • “SOTA (Summits on the air)”   see  for spots
  • Checking CW County Hunters  net on 14056.5 for spots at
  •  Checking  out this web site   It uses reverse beacon network to spot all the activity associated with cw clubs.
  • Parks on the Air cw spots found at

Bruce and CW Academy:

CWA has become a very popular training program for hams wanting to learn and USE CW.  Bruce is a “Level 1 Advisor” will talk about CWA’s history, methods, and programs. CW academy is a web-based CW learning system where classrooms are held in Skype chat sessions and instructors evaluate students’ progress. There are practice sessions and assignments. Resources and classes handle all skill levels, even those hams who do not know morse code characters yet.

I am sure this will be a popular presentation and I hope we have a great turnout at this session. See you there.



President, BARS


Meetings begin promptly at 7:00 PM, first Wednesday of the month.

Our meeting location in Chelmsford is at:

Chelmsford Bible Church
128 Gorham St. (Route 3A)
Chelmsford, MA 01824

Please park in back and enter by the rear door. A map can be accessed by the “Club Meetings” notice on the right side of the website.

The Billerica ARS encourages members to get on the air! (GOTA). There are many exciting operating events over the coming cold months to enjoy. Let us know what you’re interested in.

Bring a friend (or aspiring ham) and join us!

Note: The weekly BARS Wednesday night net will not meet on this evening because of the club meeting. Members are encouraged to get on Billerica (147.12) on their way to/from the meeting instead.

About Andy Wallace

President, Billerica Amateur Radio Society

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