New Zealand Straight Key Night

October 2021 update

New Zealand Straight Key Night has a new format and a new sponsor. See the details below.

radiotelegraph operator cartoon

Polish and lubricate that old morse key and enjoy an evening of old-time radio fun.

Straight Key Night is now an informal event (it ceased to be a contest following the June 2021 event). SKN honours the roots of amateur radio: Morse Code sent with a straight key (no bugs, sideswipers, keyers or keyboards).

This semi-annual event is supported by the New Zealand Morse Code Telegraph Key Directory.


Winter SKN is the second Sunday in June, 8-9pm NZ time.

Summer SKN is the first Sunday in December, 9-10pm NZ time.


80m (3.5 MHz)


CW sent with a straight key (no bugs, sideswipers, paddles or keyboards)


Maximum transmitter output: 100 Watts.

All contacts must be CW to CW, using a straight key (exceptions may be made for disabled operators who cannot use a straight key).

Each station may be worked only once.

All stations must follow the QSY Rule.


RST / Location / Name / Key / Transmitter / Power

You must correctly log the entire exchange shown above in order for a contact to be valid, except for contacts with non-ZL stations, where you only need to exchange RST / Location / Name.

We recommend calling “CQ SKN” (or just “SKN”) rather than “CQ TEST” for clarity and to help promote the event.

We recommend exchanging meaningful RST, not automatic “599”.


As of December 2021, SKN is an informal event, in which operators can score their own performance based on the number of complete two-way contacts. There are no certificates awarded.

Logs and summary sheets

As of December 2021, SKN is an informal event so you do not need to submit a log or summary sheet but, if you wish to use them for your own record-keeping, you can download blank forms using the links below.


PDF format is recommended if you wish to print and fill in by hand.
Word format is for those who wish to fill in the forms on their computer.

Log sheet: PDF format | Word .docx format

Summary sheet: PDF format | Word .docx format

View the results from previous contest-style SKNs:
Dec 2018 | Jun 2019 | Dec 2019 | Jun 2020 | Dec 2020 | Jun 2021

Want to get in touch?

Email the SKN webmaster