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 Forum index » DIY Hardware and Software » Circuit Bending
Where do you guys buy your equipment
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liveinrock000



Joined: May 16, 2009
Posts: 7
Location: United States

PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 11:39 am    Post subject: Where do you guys buy your equipment Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

i've heard that i can just go and get everything i need at radioshack, but ive also heard it can be cheaper and you can find better parts on some surplus places online. Does anybody know of any of these surplus websites?
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RF



Joined: Mar 23, 2007
Posts: 1490
Location: Northern Minnesota, USA
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PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

What sort of equipment are you looking for?

bruce

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gordonjay



Joined: May 27, 2009
Posts: 31
Location: asheville

PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 12:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

i am new to bending but have so far gotten everything at rat shack. most of the things i got, especially the 1/4" plugs were kind of flimsy, but of course they do have at least one of everything if you are in need of a last resort...

anyways i second this question. mostly i am looking for 1/4" cable ends, bulk resistors/transistors/chips, wire, solder, etc. the basics.
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RF



Joined: Mar 23, 2007
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Location: Northern Minnesota, USA
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PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Radio shack is very overpriced for a lot of stuff, and you won't find what you need a lot of the time.
You will save a lot if you buy in bulk, too. I very seldom buy one of anything - go for the bulk price breaks.

FWIW
Resistors, Caps, transistors and IC's I get from Digi-Key

I get 1/4" jacks and plugs from Jameco - I've been using Neutrik for my 1/4 stuff, and have been happy with them. Most DIYers seem to swear by Switchcraft. They are quite good, but pretty pricey.

I also get most of my pots and switches from Jameco - although my most recent order came from Mouser. Mouser has good banana jack prices, too.

All of these have online ordering and Digi-Key is super fast shipping.

bruce

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"I want to make these sounds that go wooo-wooo-ah-woo-woo.”
(Herb Deutsch to Bob Moog ~1963)
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gordonjay



Joined: May 27, 2009
Posts: 31
Location: asheville

PostPosted: Wed May 27, 2009 3:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

great starting points. thanks!
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destroyifyer



Joined: Mar 22, 2006
Posts: 425
Location: Babylon
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2009 11:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Screw radio shack. Go on ebay and get the stuff "en bulk".
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stolenfat



Joined: Apr 17, 2008
Posts: 430
Location: Sunny Oakland California
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 04, 2009 2:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

jameco is my fav. I swear i get things in the mail THE NEXT DAY

it could be because they are less than 45 mins away...

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potar



Joined: Nov 05, 2009
Posts: 12
Location: Long Beach, Ca

PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2009 5:00 pm    Post subject: Jameco Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I use Jameco or Kelvin for almost everything, banana jacks I get from Allied.
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If you develop an ear for sounds that are musical it is like developing an ego. You begin to refuse sounds that are not musical and that way cut yourself off from a good deal of experience.
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alienmeatsack



Joined: Mar 04, 2010
Posts: 137
Location: Oklahoma

PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Since I am pretty new to this, I've been learning the best sources for parts and bits. So here is what I've found. It's similar to what the others have said. Maybe you can learn from our mistakes and knowledge.

Radio Shack is great if you need a part right now, don't mind paying 4-8x the price, and don't mind the avg/low quality level. (Their momentary switches are literally the worse pieces of junk ever. Even Reed Ghazala bitches about how bad they are.) Avoid these particular switches like the plague. IMHO.

There's a good chance you have some good local electronics parts places, probably for service techs and such, that you can buy from. Find these and use them for your "I need it now" moments. If you make friends with the local stereo repair guy, he will gladly sell you dead stuff and parts on the super cheap to get it out of his shop.

Then go online to [url="http://www.jameco.com]Jameco[/url], [url="http://mouser.com/"]Mouser[/url], [url="http://allelectronics.com/"]All Electronics[/url], [url="http://www.digikey.com/"]Digi-Key[/url], and the many other places for everything else. You'll find that you will need to shop around a lot to find everything.

Knobs for example are hard to find that don't suck or aren't the same stuff everyone else has. If I have to look at the same 4 knobs on every project I will go mad. I find some of the best looking knobs come from guitar supply places and stereo repair shops, both online and local. Be forewarned, some of the bigger stereo style knobs are pricey.

Also check thrift stores and garage sales. You'd be surprised at what you will find there. A $5-10 used piece of junk stereo might yield 2-4 good knobs, pots, switches, resistors, capacitors, etc if you don't mind pulling them yourself. I've seen boxes of parts at flea markets, garage sales, etc too. Just have to keep your eyes peeled.

One thing I suggest, find a place with grab bags of parts. Jameco and Digi-Key both have these. They aren't too pricy and give you a great starting collection. Note, the Radio Shack LED grab bag is nice but avoid their capacitor grab bag, it's about 90% the same few caps and the rest are all over the place. Get a grab bag of caps, resistors, trim pots, switches, LEDs, etc. Then go and buy what you need specifically in bulk once you know what you actually need.

I find that I am using a lot of the following parts:
-> *Toggle switches - 3 pole, ON-OFF-ON (regular and mini)
-> *5k, 10k, 25k, 50k, 100k, 250k, 500k, 1M and 2M potentiometers (linear taper) and 25k-50k log/audio tapers for volume (try and get a small collection of the mini pots in these sizes if you can too)
-> 1/8" and 1/4" mono output jacks
-> 3MM, 5MM and some 10MM LEDs. (be sure to get a good assortment of low and high power, water clear, diffused, etc.)
-> 1k resistors (for LEDs)
-> trim pots of all sizes. I keep small value (low ohms up to 50k) and some 500k's for trimming 500k potentiometers. I also like using these in place of resistors when I am working out the exact resistance, I can set it, check the resistance and then get proper resistors.
-> 555 and 556 chips for timing/modulation, etc.
-> Knobs for the pots.
-> Momentary ON buttons (for glitches)
-> Momentary OFF buttons (for reset buttons)
-> General on/off buttons (that stay on when pressed)
-> 22-25 gauge wire (I went thru 2 spools in a few weeks!)

Also, get yourself some small zipties for tidying up your wires. And a hot glue good, good soldering station, helping hand, some kind of ceramic tile or similar for working on and soldering, a step bit for making clean holes, good quality wire strippers, a bunch of small diameter shrink wrap tubing (I have tons of it in large sizes because I use up all the tiny stuff.) A small screwdriver set with philips and flathead are also nice.

*Try and get mini versions of some of these parts for cramped spaces.

When it comes to pots, I keep 1 of each on hand with wires already attached for breadboarding. Along with one of each of the toggles and switches. Very handy! (You do have a breadboard, right?)

Regarding toys, gadgets, etc... I shop at thrift stores, flea markets, garage sales, ask friends and cowokers, etc. You will be surprised at how cheap you can find some great stuff out there. vs new. And if you kill a $3 toy, you are only out $3. Even dead toys have a purpose, you can farm the parts or use the containers for other projects.

Containers... these seem to be the big "cool factor" thing for benders, esp those who like to move projects to a different case, or build new circuits. I like to find old dead toys, gadgets, etc. Have some old 28.8 modems laying around? Perfect case for a project! Etc.

Anyway, sorry it became a long ramble. I hope you (and anyone else) gets a little something out of it.

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