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WB9LPU’s Marconi Centenary Key

September 5, 2011

A Marconi style straight key homebrewed by Rich, WB9LPU

A Marconi style straight key homebrewed by Rich, WB9LPU (copyright Richard Meiss, used with permission)

After my last post on my visit to Signal Hill I have been contacted Richard Meiss, WB9LPU, who constructed a straight key in the tradition of the keys made by the Marconi company, to celebrate the centenary in 2001 of Marconi’s reception of the first transatlantic signal. Rich has a written an account of the construction of the key, which is mounted on a piece of Newfoundland soapstone and it can be accessed below by clicking on ‘WB9LPU Marconi Style Key'; it is well worth reading.

WB9LPU Marconi Style Key

Rich manufactures many keys, paddles and bugs and his craftsmanship is outstanding.  There will be more posted on Rich’s work on the blog in the near future, but to whet your appetite here is a video of one of his homebrew bugs.

Please note Rich’s materials (photograph and PDF document) are included here with permission and do not fall under the Creative Commons license that I use on this blog.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 6, 2011 6:27 pm

    As I was watching the video all I could think of was the Mircocraft decoder in the background. I had one for years and just recently threw it out…..my luck it will be worth millions on the antique road show.

    • Richard Meiss permalink
      September 6, 2011 7:31 pm

      Hi, Mike –

      It took me a lot of eBay surfing and debugging/repair time to come up with a working Microcraft decoder. It is pretty finicky about timing, etc., and will stumble over slight variations that the human mind has no problems with. That meant that each video scene required multiple takes.

      73 de Rich, WB9LPU

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