Starting out in electronics — as with any hobby — requires an investment of time, energy, and finances. This is especially true in the early stages, when unbridled enthusiasm blurs what expenditures on equipment and supplies are necessary and which are detours. It’s amazing how easy it is to succumb to the equipment acquisition disorder or EAD — even on a relatively tight budget.
An annual event in my old ham radio club was to hold a drawing for what began as a homebrew straight key gifted to a newcomer to the club. The original key — a momentary on switch — wasn't much more than a 3" copper bar, a thumb-tack contact, and a spring.