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Re: [cw_bugs] Re: from John K3JK

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  • David Ring
    Jason, with a 38 Vibroplex Lightning Bug, you don t need a Lionel J-36, unless you re a model train collector. The 38 is or should be a way better bug.
    Message 1 of 6 , Feb 29, 2008
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      Jason, with a '38 Vibroplex Lightning Bug, you don't need a Lionel
      J-36, unless you're a model train collector. The '38 is or should be
      a "way better" bug. Incidentally, around 1938, the name "Lightning
      Bug" was introduced - so the original owner either asked for the old
      name "No. 6 Vibroplex" or he was asking for the new name "Lighting
      Bug".

      Since you already have a classic LB, I'd suggest you go for the
      classic pre-WW2 Blue Racer. They had a small damper platform with a
      little wheel - the same wheel your Model 6 has and the LB, Zephyr and
      Champion have - but it is attached to a small platform. It is a very
      "rare" damper as only the early Blue Racers used them. They also come
      on (usually) a 2-1/2 base - the smallest one Vibroplex made - but be
      sharp - you will occasionally see an odd looking (because of the
      scaled down parts) that have BR parts on a 3 or 3-1/2 (standard) base
      - these were available as special order. If I had to order a BR and
      they were available, I'd order a 3-1/2 inch base variety as they don't
      tip over when you send heavy dashes!

      The Blue Racers (BR) are very fast bugs because they are a scaled down
      sized version of the Original (except for the damper mentioned).
      Later on, they truly became a real scaled down Original. Note the
      current "Blue Racer 2000" is just an Original on a small 2-1/2 inch
      base.
      The slowest speed was about 25 wpm - standard "commercial" speed was
      around 27 wpm (International Morse). Of course that translates to
      faster American (landline) Morse.

      73

      David N1EA


      > My bugs (so far):
      > 1938 Vibroplex Lightning Bug
      > 1977 Vibroplex Original Deluxe
      >
      > I plan on getting a Lionel J36 and an original Blue Racer sometime soon.
      >
    • John
      Once again I am enjoying the emails I have received from the group. I have found out from my friend that the bug he is loaning me is a Vibroplex with a black
      Message 2 of 6 , Mar 2, 2008
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        Once again I am enjoying the emails I have received from the group. I
        have found out from my friend that the bug he is loaning me is a
        Vibroplex with a black base and a chrome top, serial number is: 168981
        If anyone knows a manufacturing date or how old this bug is, let me
        know. He said he thinks it is from the 70's. As far as slowing down
        the bug. I am going to try and use the bug as is. The only way I will
        try to slow it down would be if I could not learn it at the lowest
        speed adjustment of the bug. I understand that bugs are faster cw
        keyers. From what I have read, 20 and up for the Vibroplex. I really
        want to thank people who have given me ideas relating to learning the
        bug. I should have the bug end of this week maybe. I will take a
        picture of it and post it in the group photos. tnx fer being hr.
        John K3JK
      • Earl Needham
        ... gives an estimated build date of 1950 -- but some of the dates might be off a bit. ... Vibroplex calls
        Message 3 of 6 , Mar 2, 2008
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          At 12:35 3/2/2008, John wrote:

          >Once again I am enjoying the emails I have received from the group. I
          >have found out from my friend that the bug he is loaning me is a
          >Vibroplex with a black base and a chrome top, serial number is: 168981
          >If anyone knows a manufacturing date or how old this bug is, let me
          >know. He said he thinks it is from the 70's.

          <http://www.vibroplex.com/date_your_vibroplex.html> gives an
          estimated build date of 1950 -- but some of the dates might be off a bit.

          > As far as slowing down
          >the bug. I am going to try and use the bug as is. The only way I will
          >try to slow it down would be if I could not learn it at the lowest
          >speed adjustment of the bug.

          At 09:48 3/2/2008, cloud runner wrote:
          >Neither the extendadot nor extra (meaning third) weight methods of
          >slowing bugs down are satisfactory to me. both add a lot of mass to
          >the lever arm and completely changes the feel and handling of the bug.
          >
          >Instead, I suggest the replica of the Hills speed changer made by
          >Tim Soxman and sold by Vibroplex. it has permanent utility because
          >in addition to slowing the bug w-a-y down, it also allows for very
          >quick speed changing at any speed. You put one weight on it, it in
          >itself is about equal to one other weight, so together does not add
          >mass to the lever. when folded back, it places the mass far away
          >from the mainspring so it slows the bug way down, but when folded
          >forward, the bug will go very fast. You will keep using this even
          >after no longer a beginner whereas the extadot is destined for
          >residence in a drawer never to be used again.

          Vibroplex calls this the Varispeed -- picture at
          <http://www.vibroplex.com/accessories.html> toward the bottom. I
          have had two of these, I gave one away with a bug to a dear friend
          who lost everything in Katrina. The Varispeed works well, just as
          described by KT5X, and its indispensable to me when I'm having an off day.

          7 3
          Earl

          KD5XB -- Earl Needham
          Clovis, New Mexico DM84jk
          http://groups.yahoo.com/group/cw_bugs
          Quoting from the Coast Guard: ZUT
        • hermit
          Hello John - I got my Vibroplex Anniversary bug for Christmas last year - a gift from my wife. My Elmer stressed the importance of adjustments and he gave me
          Message 4 of 6 , Mar 2, 2008
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            Hello John -

            I got my Vibroplex Anniversary bug for Christmas last year - a gift
            from my wife. My Elmer stressed the importance of adjustments and he
            gave me a good idea for slowing down the bug until I got used to it.
            He told me to open the dit contact all the way and that helped me
            tremendously. I have since then closed the contact points a wee bit
            as my ability on the bug has improved.

            Just thought I would pass this little tid-bit on to you.

            73

            Rich KB3OMJ

            >Once again I am enjoying the emails I have received from the group. I
            >have found out from my friend that the bug he is loaning me is a
            >Vibroplex with a black base and a chrome top, serial number is: 168981
            >If anyone knows a manufacturing date or how old this bug is, let me
            >know. He said he thinks it is from the 70's. As far as slowing down
            >the bug. I am going to try and use the bug as is. The only way I will
            >try to slow it down would be if I could not learn it at the lowest
            >speed adjustment of the bug. I understand that bugs are faster cw
            >keyers. From what I have read, 20 and up for the Vibroplex. I really
            >want to thank people who have given me ideas relating to learning the
            >bug. I should have the bug end of this week maybe. I will take a
            >picture of it and post it in the group photos. tnx fer being hr.
            >John K3JK
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