Sneak peek at N0SA’s new “SOTA Paddle”

UPDATE 09 (Oct 2021): Larry (N0SA) informs me that he sold all of his SOTA Paddle inventory as of last night. In other words, very quickly. If he produces another run of them, I’ll post it here on!

A couple weeks ago, Larry (N0SA) reached out to me and asked if I’d like to evaluate a new set of precision field paddles he’s designed. Having purchased a set of 3D-printed paddles from N0SA last year, I didn’t hesitate.

Larry simply calls this model the SOTA Paddle. An appropriate name because this paddles is incredibly compact, lightweight, and perfect for hiking and backpacking. They also have a short Allen wrench cleverly stowed within the paddle body for any adjustments in the field. The Allen wrench is locked in in such a way, there’s no possibility it’ll fall out either. Clever!

They come with a high quality three foot cloth braid cord with molded 1/8” plug.

Over the past week, I’ve taken these paddles to two different park activations with the Elecraft KX2 and AX1 antenna.

My activation videos and field reports are perhaps a week down the road yet, but I couldn’t help but post my initial impressions.

So how would I describe N0SA’s new SOTA Paddles–?

The Bee’s Knees!

I love them.

These truly feel like precision paddles. They’re entirely constructed of aluminum and stainless steel parts.

Although the body/frame of the paddles are open, they feel incredibly sturdy. No doubt, they’ll survive the environment inside a backpack or field kit.

They’re very compact, yet feel perfect in the hand.

Larry also includes 6 pieces of 3M dual lock for mounting the paddles on a clipboard, radio, or any other surface.

As readers know, I love my CW Morse Paddles–they represent an amazing amount of quality at such an affordable price.

If you’re in the market for a compact precision aluminum key, however, I can recommend these without hesitation.

Here’s the deal as I understand it: Larry may only make a couple small production runs of these. He does this as a fun side hibby, not for scaled-up production and distribution. I believe he may have as many as 20 units available soon.

Again, you’ll see the SOTA Paddles in action in upcoming videos, but I wanted to mention it here on QRPer so that–if this sort of thing interests you–you might have a chance to place an order before the first and/or second production runs are spoken for.

The price is $125.00 US (each) plus $15.00 for priority mail shipping. You’ll have to inquire if located outside the US (I’m not certain if he ships internationally).

Payment can be made via PayPal to his email address which is his callsign (You can also check out his contact details on

Email him with questions and to check availability in advance.

Larry is a long-time reader of, so he might add notes in the comments section.

Speaking of which, thank you so much, Larry, for sending me these paddles. They are simply amazing.

33 thoughts on “Sneak peek at N0SA’s new “SOTA Paddle””

  1. Look like must haves to me. I have a thing for paddles, especially metal ones. I have a set from N3ZN that I like. One thing that works for me is that those paddles can be attached by an 8-32 screw. I drilled a hole in my clip board and viola!, the paddles are secure on the clip board with no wiggle. Maybe Larry can add an 8-32 hole to his base. I use a brass screw with a knurled head so I can adjust the paddle’s position while in the field.

  2. My SOTA Paddles have two threaded holes on the top and bottom for this purpose.
    The holes have 4-40 threads.

  3. Well I emailed him asking what’s the procedure for getting one.
    Thx for the info.

    As my football coach used to say after telling us to do something in advance

    R.G.? We’d say, Dunn.

  4. Wow! I’ve been searching the sale forums for years looking for a set of N0SA portable mini paddles. The only one I came across was sold before I got there. I emailed him straight away. Thank you Thomas.

  5. Are the SOTA paddles “squeeze key”? I much prefer dual paddles over the single lever paddles that Tom has been using lately.

  6. Is it heavy enough to use with one hand with the key paddle setting on the table???

    I only use paddles and keys that work this way.

    Does look like a nice design.

    73, ron, n9ee

    1. Hi, Ron,

      No, you would need to either use the 3M loop and hook pads, else use the holes with 4-40 threads to attach it to something. These are super lightweight.


      1. Well ok. Does look like a very nice design, I do like what Larry has produced, just not for me.

        I just got finished building a very cheap (quality and price $10, wise) paddle, did have some thought into it, all plastic except for the screws for contacts and a 1/8th inch jack. It is small and would need to hold or nail down. In a kit.

        1. This plastic paddle I got on AliExpress. It comes as a kit, takes some figuring out to put together. There are 3 versions and looks like the one Steve has used in some of his outings, the black paddle. I think Steve has the larger one.

          It is no where the quality of Thomas’s paddle and I am sure no where the feel. The feel is what makes a good paddle.

          73, ron, n9ee

  7. I am all sold out.
    Thank you to everyone for your orders.
    I have no idea at this time when I will be building more.
    As stated, this is a hobby for me and I have many other interests to fill my time. Including grandchildren.

    1. I received mine today and just opened it. Nice work. I will put it on the air right after I finish dinner. Hi Hi. Thank you Larry. de K8DRT

  8. Yeah I’ve been using the SOTA paddle for a couple days now. As Thomas said they are the bees knees. I’ll add the giraffes ankles. Smooth as silk and consistent. One of my biggest complaints with keys is not absolutely knowing what’s gonna be sent. These things are always consistent. I’ve tried to make them be unpredictable by angling them different to see what happens. Nope. Right on every time.
    Nice job Larry

  9. Also very late to the game…this is exactly what I’m looking for. Should you decide to do another batch or something similar, I’d be very interested in getting on a list. Very nice looking pieces and sound like a smooth and predictable operation. Thanks to both Larry and Thomas for all that you do for the hobby =]

  10. Also sorry to be late for a chance at this great key. I have N0SA’s TP4 Paddles #094 – they are my favorite!! (Like them even more than my Begali….but, those are pretty awesome too.)

    Larry, if you ever do another run of the SOTA paddles I’d like to be on the list too.

    -Thanks! -Dave, WB7QMR

  11. Please add me to the list if you ever make another run of this paddle. It comes highly recommended.

    -Paul, N7EW

  12. Hi Larry,
    I am a Belgian radio amateur living in the Philippines. Have seen your SOTA paddles at work in Thomas YT video’s. Would like to order one if you ever make a new batch. Please put me on your waiting list. I do have a delivery address in CA-US if you cannot ship abroad.
    Thanks Eddy, ON7MW / 4F3KT

  13. Is there anyway we could talk Larry (N0SA) into making another batch of these SOTA paddles? I would really enjoy these. They look like just the right size to hold in your hand during a park activation!! I’ll also reach out to him on QRZ, but either way, I’d love to have one of these paddles.

    73, KA0BOB

        1. Oh my! Those are in the catalog already? Brilliant! I haven’t tried them but you’d better believe I will!

  14. FYI: so there was a link posted here to a new CW Morse paddle, but there’s no inventory at present–there will be soon, though. When I hear from them, I’ll re-post the announcement. Doing this to prevent too many questions about inventory levels clogging up CW Morse’s inbox. 🙂

    I will be reviewing and announcing this soon, though!

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