The Koch/Farnsworth Methods of Learning CW
Information on this page is provided by Brion VE3FUJ. Contact Brion at with any questions or comments.
The "Koch Method" consist of learning each individual Letter at a fairly high speed, then adding 1 or 2 more letters, then alternating the sending and mixing the letters up. When you have achieved a copying success rate of say 90 or so % then add 1 or 2 more letters, or perhaps a number or two. And keep doing that, till you got all of the Alphabet the numbers and the most often used punctuation marks mastered. Once you get this far you can then switch to listen to words to get used to the sound of a word rather than the sound of letters, which I believe is the only way to high Speed copying, coupled with reading without the assistance of a pencil and paper ( in your head like regular speech).
When that is achieved then think in terms of using a MILL (typewriter or computer). Or even starting out with that in the beginning.
Koch Method is available through G4FON by clicking on the set up Button. G4FON requires downloading to you Computer, Instruction are on the Site.
Koch Method is also available on LCWO.net and then click on " Learning CW on line ". LCWO does require registration and a password.
G4FON can also be configured to transmit only words starting with a letter of your choice and consisting of your choice as to number of letters. Say words starting with the letter "A" and words up to 3 or perhaps 6 Characters, your choice. Instructions for that is to "Unselect all" then select only "A" and then instruct the Program for the number of letters you are willing to put up with in words, all starting with the letter "A", or any other letter for that matter, or even 2 or 3 different starting letters.
The "Farnsworth Method" consists of sending characters forming words, also at high Speed and vary the spacing so you have time to interpret what you heard. Then reducing the space until its the correct spacing for the preferred Speed. It is meant to get you used to the sound of word rather than letters, thereby being able to listen to and interpret words at the high Speed that you want to achieve.
When considering any of the above, it should be kept in mind ---THERE ARE NO SHORTCUTS TO SPEED --- only willingness, time and determination.
The Award is great and with a lot of Personal satisfaction thrown in.
Whatever Method is chosen, should be the one that you feel works best for you. My choice would be G4FON as being the more versatile.
In any event, practice session should not be too long say abt 20 min or so, as a longer time tend to muddle the brain. They should however, be on a regular basis and not too long between them either, perhaps no more than a day or two, or perhaps twice a day, if time permits. As pointed out in other parts of "CW Assistance".