In a post to the Elecraft mailing list today, Wayne Burdick, N6KR described the “arcane history of CW pitch-matching” in an entertaining and informative note:

“In the Days of Yore, a frequency offset between stations didn’t always matter. Sometimes both stations used crystal-controlled transmitters, so operators had to patient tune around after calling CQ. As a 14-year-old novice I embraced this operating style for a year or so, armed with a dozen or so crusty FT-243 crystals for my Heath HW-16. I nearly wore out the socket swapping them in and out. After calling CQ, it was not unusual to find a caller 30 or more kHz away! (Away from “where” was a poorly answered question, as my Hallicrafters receiver dial wasn’t exactly digital.) Fortunately I soon acquired an outboard VFO, a life-changing addition to my station. Jealous friends doubled up on their paper routes to pay for their own. Girls suddenly paid more attention to me…”

Read the entire message here.