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Thread: Using a morse keyer with an FT-7900/R?

  1. #1

    Default Using a morse keyer with an FT-7900/R?


    Just got my paper, looking to purchase my first radio (FT-7900/R), I am interested in learning morse code.
    I am looking at the FT-7900/r mobile radio for both truck use and as a base station.

    How does one connect a keyer, be it a straight key or a paddle keyer to this radio?

    Does this radio allow a keyer to be connected to it or do I need some kind of other equipment to implement that?

    I've heard of other radios having built-in keyers? but this is all new to me.
    Just want my first radio to a good choice without breaking the bank!


  2. #2
    Super Moderator pmh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Bury, Lancashire


    Dear Jeff,

    Congratulations on passing.

    The 7900 is a dual band FM radio, for which you will not hear anybody running Morse.

    If you are really interested in Morse then you need to pick up an HF radio, where you will find many stations across many bands.

    Kind regards,


  3. #3

    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Oulu, Finland


    You can do it, but you would need an AF oscillator to put a tone on the FM signal.
    I did quick search and found this:

    Naturally though, you will need to have someone else with a similar set-up to practice with, as morse over FM isn't a common thing.

    There is a portion of the two-metre band set aside for CW, down, just above 144,000 MHz.

    Technically, you can send CW with an FM radio, as you would switch the carrier on and off - just wire the morse key to where there PTT of the mic goes. But receiving is more problematic: You would just hear bursts of noise as most FM radios don't have any facility for creating an audio tone, such as a BFO.

    Still, find someone to practice with, knock up the tone generators and give it a go.

    best regards,


  4. #4


    As Phil said, that's the wrong radio for CW.

    I'd echo Rob's last statement. What you need is someone to practise with and that might not even need a radio. I got my UK Class B licence (VHF/UHF only) in 1984. As well as a 2m multimode radio, I bought an HF radio that I could only listen with, so it sat there in the shack saying "You can't use me yet, so learn CW!" I wrote a computer programme that could send me random groups of letters at whatever speed I wanted, but also built a small battery powered oscillator and amp that I could use for sending practice. I'd then take that around to a couple of friends who were also learning, or who had just passed the UK's CW test. We'd practise together, with a mix of computer and 'real' CW. There were also, I'm certain, practise morse classes on 2m FM, with the 'trainer' sending morse audio using a similar oscillator set up. I must admit to becoming a bit lazy with my practice, so to give myself a kick up the backside, I simply booked a date for the CW test earlier than I'd have liked and made myself do the work! The test was easy after that, and I got my full Class A licence in 1985.

    So find a friend, a local ham, who's willing to help. And I'm sure that there are CW sending programmes out there on line somewhere.

    Then head for HF, where CW lives!
    Current radios: VHF/UHF: 2 x Baofeng 2/70 Handhelds. VHF: Kenwood TR9130 2m multimode. HF: Kenwood TS930S-AT
    Home antennas planned: G5RV / G7FEK / end fed wire. 1/2 wave vertical for 10m. 6 element beam for 2m. Vertical collinear for 2/70
    Website for the 'day job':

  5. #5
    Sudden's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Rothwell, Northamptonshire, England


    I did this with a FT-8900R. I made a handheld unit to operate the PTT. I used the programs CW-Get and CW-Type. Set CW-Type sending a message, pressed the PTT on the handheld unit and poured morse down the mic jack. Never got a reply but was interesting getting it to work. Also tried it with other modes with the same results.
    I'm leaving now to go find myself....if I arrive before I get back, please ask me to wait!

  6. #6


    get with your local club and find yourself an elmer to help you out a bit...
    congrats on passing the exam and getting your "paper"
    an elmer will help you get the practical aspects of operating in the hobby down a bit, the study books do not do a good job of that.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Oulu, Finland


    While you wouldn't normally use FM for morse, it does, or at least used to be used for practice purpose. I'm pretty sure the Colchester Radio Amateur club used to send morse out at the same time once a week. The guy would send ther code, then when finished, read out what he sent. That was back in 198-something, when I was a freshly minted G8.

    If you have a mate across town, doing morse practice over the air is worthwhile.

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