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"Dyna Maniflex Instructions"

"A French Sideswiper c. 1950"

by Neal McEwen, K5RW

Copyright © 2002,  Neal McEwen

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In twenty years of collecting and documenting wire and wireless telegraph keys, I have come across at least half a dozen makers of sideswipers.  Yet, I have never seen a set of manufacturers instructions on the use of a sideswiper.  Recently, I was fortunate to run across an instruction sheet for the Dyna Maniflex, a sideswiper made in France, c.1950.  Naturally the instructions were in French.  Thanks to this translation by Claude Terrier, F5PBL, I am able to share the instruction sheet with you.

Use of the Maniflex

The use of the Maniflex double contacts helps in getting a good rhythm in your sending and allows you to transmit at this speed without getting tired.  Despite that you need some training.   If you follow the advice here after, you will quickly get good results using this specific way of sending.

Position of the hand:  It is very important not to tighten the paddle between your thumb and your forefinger. The paddle should be pushed alternatively by the thumb and the forefinger.  The two fingers should be separate from each other by about one to two centimeters.

Basic principle:  The paddle should always go from one contact to the other. In other words, never push two times in the same direction.

Sending method:  You should start by sending slowly, a set of dits then dahs in closing alternatively the right contact then the left one.  At first you should take care of the regularity of the signals themselves and also of the rhythm and of the spaces between the signals.  These groups are made to make your fist get accustomed with the movement to and fro.   This movement should be done smoothly, without tightness, without "brutality" on the contact nor with extreme pressure.  After that, you can start with sending the simple letters:  A N E I S H T M N O CH

You should send a set of letters, at first by hitting the right side contact and  then the same set of letters by starting with the left side contact.  For example, for the letter A, you should start with the dit on the right side then the dah on the left side. After that, send the same letter by starting with the dit on the left then the dah on the right.

You should proceed in the same way when you will start training on the harder letters such as F L U W J.  Then the numbers and punctuation signs.  Even if you master the Morse code, it is very important not to start at high speed.  It is very important at first to master the rhythm, the speed will come to you later on.

In order to learn the CW sending, please refer to the book "Sound reading and CW sending the easy way", written by Jean Brun, editor Albin Michel, book of 117 pages , format 16*24, 13 drawings and 4 charts.

For more information, visit the Telegraph Office home page

Neal McEwen,