Straight key problem V6 replay w fix

David Wilcox K8WPE


That is what I did (wired a straight key with a tip, ring, sleeve plug and it works. Straight key connected to tip-sleeve or sleeve-ring or something like that…. Just like the Dah contacts on my paddle plug). It would be nice if this is the case and the manual mentioned it. Now to make contacts.

I wish I could remember where or what rig required this type of plug to use with CW. I am sure somewhere I had read about it, maybe way back in the original Bitx.

I didn’t want to change firmware until everything was working at least in the basic sense with the standard firmware. After I make a few contacts then I will brush up my Arduino and change the firmware to N8ME version as that has been highly recommended by those who have been there.

Do you have any special favorites in firmware or mods?

Do you have any idea what the extra wires/plugs that came with the Bitx are used for? There are extra sockets on the board. Maybe the wide plug is for a different screen if one upgrades to a Nextion or whatever.

The V6 is a sweet radio. Reminds me of when I first got a K1….. just couldn’t stop listening to it.

Dave K8WPE

David J. Wilcox’s iPad

On Nov 15, 2021, at 8:31 PM, Bill Cromwell <wrcromwell@...> wrote:

Hi Dave,

I could be barking up the wrong tree or even be in wrong forest but I recall something about requiring a 'stereo' plug on the cable from the straight key and it isn't wired like our legacy straight keys. I would connect the contacts used in your paddle and connected to the dah and wire up a cable with a stereo connector for your straight key. I have succeeded with a straight key and my V3 and it has the plug wired with a 'stereo' connector. You have nothing to lose giving that a try:)


Bill KU8H

bark less - wag more

On 11/15/21 6:31 PM, David Wilcox K8WPE via wrote:
After looking over my new Version 6 uBitx and enjoying it I have discovered an issue regarding using a straight key. As I had mentioned in a previous email to the group when in “hand key” mode and using a straight key when I press down using the key (actually trying three different keys) it makes a squeak and occasionally will hold the side tone irrationally but I can’t use it to send. It sounds like dirty contacts but cleaning them makes no difference. BUT if I insert a set of paddles I can use the dah paddle all day sending like a straight key (still in the “hand key” mode).

I pulled out the board and closely examined the key jack. All looks great and the soldering looks excellent. I reheated the solder contacts anyway but no change. I am probably going to wire up a straight key using the same plug and contacts as a dah paddle and see how it goes.

I checked the contacts in the key jack under high power magnification and with an ohm meter and all seems according to the schematic as far as I can see. Some have advised to use the N8ME firmware but if there is an error or short somewhere I doubt that will fix the issue.

Any ideas as to what the cause might be? I can live with it but would like to figure this out.

Dave K8WPE

David J. Wilcox’s iPad