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Re: [cw_bugs] blue racers

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  • Jason Hissong
    I recently got stung by the Bug bug and now my collection is up to 4 bugs. I just got my first Blue Racer yesterday. It is a 1960 Blue Racer in standard
    Message 1 of 8 , Aug 1, 2008
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      I recently got stung by the Bug bug and now my collection is up to 4
      bugs. I just got my first Blue Racer yesterday. It is a 1960 Blue
      Racer in standard finish (gray base) so it would be the later bugs (not
      the newest kind). I have not used the #4 Blue Racer yet, but hope to
      someday.

      First QSO on it was with Stan, ZL2BLQ. It has a bug tamer on it and it
      sends nice smooth CW.

      Jason N8XE

      David Ring wrote:
      > Oh, FD, I am a sick man. I lust after keys, blue racers as pretty as FD's
      > blue racer. A prudy woman doesn't turn my haid any mo' but a spiffy blue
      > racer gets my blood boiling.
      >
      > This key has to be a woman? Right FD? Sweet sleek sexy and blue!
      >
      > I have to get my Bunnell catalog from under my mattress tonight. I think it
      > has some old Vibroplex keys pasted into it as well as some spark coils. It
      > is going to be a nice night.
      >
      > 73
      >
      > DR
      >
      >


      --

      "A long journey starts with the first step and an understanding spouse."
      http://www.undermidnight.com - astronomy and astrophotography
      http://www.n8xe.com - ham radio
      http://www.jasonhissong.com - electronic music composition
    • k4oso
      Jason, If you want to send smooth CW, the old model Presentation, with the LaHiff adjustable mainspring is the bug to use. I foolishly sold my first one. (I
      Message 2 of 8 , Aug 1, 2008
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        Jason,
        If you want to send smooth CW, the old model Presentation, with the
        LaHiff adjustable mainspring is the bug to use. I foolishly sold my
        first one. (I wanted to sell a key to buy other stuff and the buyer
        asked me which was the best sender. Being an honest guy, I told
        him,....so he bought it). I just recently acquired another one (a
        real steal!), and lo and behold, its just as smooth as the first.
        This one will not leave the shack!.
        73 and enjoy your Racer (I'm enjoying my three),
        Milt k4oso

        --- In cw_bugs@yahoogroups.com, Jason Hissong <jhisson1@...> wrote:
        >
        > I recently got stung by the Bug bug and now my collection is up to
        4
        > bugs. I just got my first Blue Racer yesterday. It is a 1960 Blue
        > Racer in standard finish (gray base) so it would be the later bugs
        (not
        > the newest kind). I have not used the #4 Blue Racer yet, but hope
        to
        > someday.
        >
        > First QSO on it was with Stan, ZL2BLQ. It has a bug tamer on it
        and it
        > sends nice smooth CW.
        >
        > Jason N8XE
        >
        > David Ring wrote:
        > > Oh, FD, I am a sick man. I lust after keys, blue racers as
        pretty as FD's
        > > blue racer. A prudy woman doesn't turn my haid any mo' but a
        spiffy blue
        > > racer gets my blood boiling.
        > >
        > > This key has to be a woman? Right FD? Sweet sleek sexy and blue!
        > >
        > > I have to get my Bunnell catalog from under my mattress tonight.
        I think it
        > > has some old Vibroplex keys pasted into it as well as some spark
        coils. It
        > > is going to be a nice night.
        > >
        > > 73
        > >
        > > DR
        > >
        > >
        >
        >
        > --
        >
        > "A long journey starts with the first step and an understanding
        spouse."
        > http://www.undermidnight.com - astronomy and astrophotography
        > http://www.n8xe.com - ham radio
        > http://www.jasonhissong.com - electronic music composition
        >
      • David Ring
        The La Hiff Adjustable Mainspring is most easily identified from the top of the bug looking down at the end of the lever where it joins the mainspring. On a
        Message 3 of 8 , Aug 1, 2008
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          The "La Hiff Adjustable Mainspring" is most easily identified from the top of the bug looking down at the end of the lever where it joins the mainspring.  On a regular Vibroplex all you see from the top is a thin cut where the mainspring is inserted and from the sides rivets which penetrate both sides  of the lever-mainspring-lever sandwith and hold the mainspring in place.

          If the Presentation has  the La-Hiff adjustable mainspring visable from the top are two small slotted machine screws one nearest the mainspring end and one about a half inch down the lever towards towards the pivot.  These machine screws may be loosened and the mainspring extended and retracted changing the period of oscillation of the mainspring and attached rod on which the weights are usually mounted.  With the mainspring extended out of the lever, the speed of the key slows down even more than a Champion, Zephyr or Lightning Bug.   With the weights on the vibrating rod, and the mainspring pushed into the slot in the lever the period of oscillation is made shorter, the speed of the key can be made faster.  Think of this setting as a "range setting" of the Vibroplex.   This is a "set and forget" adjustment.  The weights provide day to day speed changes.

          The Presentation was a improvement to the Original model and was a separate model which ONLY came in a jeweled movement, had a gold top plate over the chromed base, and the La Hiff adjustable mainspring to provide greater speed range and a adjustable "feel" to the key.

          LATER and CURRENTLY the production of the Presentation was stopped - around 1980 and it continues to no longer being produced.

          Around 1980 a new model of Original key was introduced called the Original Presentation model.  It is just an Original with a gold top plate and a jeweled movement.

          Similarly the Blue Racer was produced from the 19-teens until about 1975.  The Blue Racer had a smaller pendulum (vibrator) and smaller scale yoke and other parts.  This is why these keys are faster as the vibrator is not as long.   Most of these keys were on a 2-1/2 inch base, but some were on a 3 inch base or 3-1/2 inch (standard) base.  The older keys before WW2 had a small damper and the WW2 and later keys had a smaller scale damper of the type used on the Original key.

          In 1999 a new Original model was introduced called the Blue Racer Millenium or Blue Racer 2000.  It is an Original model with a bright blue base.  These keys have no miniture parts and the vibrator is the same length as the all the other models of the Originaal.

          The Original model now comes in four stock and one special models:
          o Standard - non-jeweled movement, black finger pieces.  3.5 inch base.
          o Deluxe - jeweled movement and red finger pieces. 3.5 inch base.
          o Presentation finish - as for the deluxe but adds a gold top plate. 3.5 inch base.
          o Blue Racer 2000 Original - as the deluxe but with either a blue or chrome base on a narrow 2-1/2 inch base.
          o 100th Anniversary - special limited edition with black epoxy finish with gold pin stripe, otherwise like the Standard Original.  Looks like the old 1920 Originals.

          73

          DR

          David Ring, N1EA
          =30=

          ed on the

          On Fri, Aug 1, 2008 at 10:32 AM, k4oso <k4oso@...> wrote:
          Jason,
          If you want to send smooth CW, the old model Presentation, with the
          LaHiff adjustable mainspring is the bug to use.  I foolishly sold my
          first one. (I wanted to sell a key to buy other stuff and the buyer
          asked me which was the best sender.  Being an honest guy, I told
          him,....so he bought it).  I just recently acquired another one (a
          real steal!), and lo and behold, its just as smooth as the first.
          This one will not leave the shack!.
          73 and enjoy your Racer (I'm enjoying my three),
          Milt k4oso

        • David Ring
          Oh, this will make what I said clearer. Around 1980 a new model of Original key was introduced called the Original Presentation model. It is just an Original
          Message 4 of 8 , Aug 2, 2008
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            Oh, this will make what I said clearer.

            Around 1980 a new model of Original key was introduced called the Original Presentation model.  It is just an Original with a gold top plate and a jeweled movement.   In other words - the DISTINGUISHING feature of the Presentation that made it a whole different type of key - the La Hiff adjustable mainspring was DISCONTINUED as a cost cutting measure.

            Thus the key just became the Original model with a Presentation finish.

            Other cost cutting measures were done like removing the silver braid across the jeweled contacts to improve conductivity across the non-conductive synthetic ruby.  I believe the jewels that Vibroplex now uses are conductive.

            The screw which held the trunnion pin (note correct spelling - Vibroplex spells it incorrectly) in place has been removed to save labor and materials costs.

            73

            DR
          • k4oso
            David, Your utterings have been saved alongside other, prior jewels of knowledge. Thanks, Milt K4OSO ... Original ... and a ... the ... Hiff ... finish. ...
            Message 5 of 8 , Aug 2, 2008
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              David,
              Your utterings have been saved alongside other, prior jewels of
              knowledge.
              Thanks,
              Milt K4OSO

              --- In cw_bugs@yahoogroups.com, "David Ring" <n1ea@...> wrote:
              >
              > Oh, this will make what I said clearer.
              >
              > Around 1980 a new model of Original key was introduced called the
              Original
              > Presentation model. It is just an Original with a gold top plate
              and a
              > jeweled movement. In other words - the DISTINGUISHING feature of
              the
              > Presentation that made it a whole different type of key - the La
              Hiff
              > adjustable mainspring was DISCONTINUED as a cost cutting measure.
              >
              > Thus the key just became the Original model with a Presentation
              finish.
              >
              > Other cost cutting measures were done like removing the silver
              braid across
              > the jeweled contacts to improve conductivity across the non-
              conductive
              > synthetic ruby. I believe the jewels that Vibroplex now uses are
              > conductive.
              >
              > The screw which held the trunnion pin (note correct spelling -
              Vibroplex
              > spells it incorrectly) in place has been removed to save labor and
              materials
              > costs.
              >
              > 73
              >
              > DR
              >
            • David Ring
              I just wanted to help some new comer who pays top dollar for a Presentation only to find it is a fancy Original. 73 DR
              Message 6 of 8 , Aug 2, 2008
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                I just wanted to help some new comer who pays top dollar for a Presentation only to find it is a fancy Original.

                73
                DR

                On Sat, Aug 2, 2008 at 10:25 AM, k4oso <k4oso@...> wrote:
                David,
                Your utterings have been saved alongside other, prior jewels of
                knowledge.
                Thanks,
                Milt K4OSO

                 --- In cw_bugs@yahoogroups.com, "David Ring" <n1ea@...> wrote:
                >
                > Oh, this will make what I said clearer.
                >
                > Around 1980 a new model of Original key was introduced called the
                Original
                > Presentation model.  It is just an Original with a gold top plate
                and a
                > jeweled movement.   In other words - the DISTINGUISHING feature of
                the
                > Presentation that made it a whole different type of key - the La
                Hiff
                > adjustable mainspring was DISCONTINUED as a cost cutting measure.
                >
                > Thus the key just became the Original model with a Presentation
                finish.
                >
                > Other cost cutting measures were done like removing the silver
                braid across
                > the jeweled contacts to improve conductivity across the non-
                conductive
                > synthetic ruby.  I believe the jewels that Vibroplex now uses are
                > conductive.
                >
                > The screw which held the trunnion pin (note correct spelling -
                Vibroplex
                > spells it incorrectly) in place has been removed to save labor and
                materials
                > costs.
                >
                > 73
                >
                > DR
                >



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