Marconi's  third key. first used in 1899, was named the "Grass Hopper" key but no one knows how it acquired this name. It had a screened terminal with a lead covered wire aerial-lead to the receiver. The terminal at the end of the ebonite road was connected with the aerial by means of a flexible lead.

While transmitting with this key, the aerial was disconnected from the receiver. When transmission was finished, the key arm fell back and reconnected the aerial with the receiver.

This key received patent 650 109 on May 22, 1900.

marconi_grasshopper 1.jpg
Marconi's Third   Key, namely the "Grasshopper". (Photo via Marconi Veteran's Association. From the collection of Bob Popsmovar  of the British Vintage Wireless Society) 
Side view of the Grasshopper.  It is  a replica made in England by GONVT.(Photo courtesy Telegraph Keys.Com)


Contributors and Credits:

1) Lewis Bodkin  <05bodkin555(at)>

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