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Sunday, December 23, 2012
Spacing in Morse code
For a CW operator, the spaces in Morse code are quite important. The spaces between dashes and dots, those between words and those between sentences make up Morse code. They are as important as dashes and dots themselves. Imagine that these spaces are irregular or inappropriate. It could be almost impossible for us to read the code. Appropriate setteing of spaces, that is, spacings, is crucial for beautiful and efficient CW.
I would like to mention of two issues related with the spacing.
The problem of "BK" sent in the end of messages which I questioned in the previous article could be a kind of, or an extension of this issue. In the end of messages, there should be appropriate spacings. Sending IDs could be a kind of spacings. It will enable us read the message comfortably as well as fluently. Without this "spacings" between transmission and reception, we could hardly go on communicating.
The other point is the minute but still substantial variation of spacings. CW is often compared to music. Silence in music should be comparable to spaces in Morse code. When some phrase or motif is accentuated in music, a minute pause of silence is often put immediately before it. It is called "Auftakt" in German. In sending Morse code, we put a bit of exaggerated space before some word which we would like to emphasize, if consciously or not. For example, when calling CQ, we often wait a bit before giving our call following DE. It is to emphasize our call sign, which is most important in this message. If this "Auftakt" sounds proper, the Morse code could be a real music.
CW is an art. It is not so complicated as the other arts like music. It sounds, however, like real music in our mind. It delivers our idea and emotion directly. Why won't you send it in a beautiful and efficient way?