Monday, April 29, 2013

Get A Hobby, Hit The Yard Sales

Since I started up with hobby #32516, Electronics, I’ve been slowly accumulating parts that I may or may not need for projects in the near or far future. The usual assortments have been bought from Ebay, Amazon and Jameco, special bits bought from Mouser and Newark. But I have a definite lack of random crap stored up for use. In the past my usual remedy has been to rely on luck. Several years ago when I started the airgun blog I hit a yard sale that had a large collection of broken pellet guns. Last year I hit a yard sale with a pile of extremely inexpensive and relatively modern computer parts. Yesterday I hit a sale that took partial care of my electronics spare parts problem.

At first glance there was nothing at the sale of interest. I had flagged it on my list (yes, I make a list of yard sales to hit in order of importance and location) as it said “electronic kits”. I was about to leave but started talking to the young guy having the sale. It turned out that he had put away all of the electronic parts and books because of a perceived lack of interest. So he dragged them out again and I bought what he had. “Make offer”, so I gave him a $20 bill and loaded up the van. He had received them from the estate of an old friend/neighbor (?) and wanted them to go to someone who would use them. Well, I’ll use a lot of what I got.

Now those of you with no interest can turn away as there will be a number of incredibly boring pictures of objects. Those who like looking up datasheets will have fun.

A pile of stuff from one box.

Retail packages of components. Before the internet you would go into Radio Shack or your other friendly electronic store and buy a couple of caps, etc.

I can always use more transistors.

Yes it is.

Pots, you need lots of pots for experiments.


Dip switches.

Jacks and plugs!

I like this one, it illustrates how a phone connector works. I can bore many people with this.


Some numerical displays.

Some unassembled LCD displays.

Bulbs and LEDs.

ICs! Lots of them. Some useless and some useful.

I can use these.

I don’t think I’ll use these.

Nor these.

Lovely packages.

Some are not in anti-static foam, so I don’t know if they are good or not.

LEDs and resistor arrays.

Op amps, etc. That isn’t anti-static either.

Old chips. I may frame the Z-80 and hang it on the wall.

I don’t know why this socket has a chip.

More chips. Feel free to disparage them.

ZIF sockets.

More sockets.


A pile of random loose components. That’ll be fun to sort out some evening.

I got two of these, one looked like the guy was fixing it. They’ll go to a friend who does DC power stuff.

Two more power supplies/chargers of some sort.

Old CB radios.

A nice gauge.

Now I have two Timex Sinclairs

And the printer! Oh how I wanted one way back when. It cost as much as the computer and we never bought one.

Anyway, a good haul.


Unknown said...

Some serious nice-ass geeking out Nick. This may keep you out of Felice's hair for a while... but probably not.

Nick Carter said...

Stu, she's happy I cleared it all off the dining room table.

Anonymous said...

The "socket with a chip" is a Dallas Semiconductor real time clock for an IBM PC. There is a little lithium battery in there somewhere to hold the time when the PC is turned off. Good for about 5 years.

You removed the CPU (or perhaps the boot ROM) and stacked it in this socket. There was a little program that read the time from a special I/O address on the chip.

If you didnt have one of these or the equivalent on a board, then you had to set the time every time you booted the PC.

Nick Carter said...

Thanks for the information. It's really amazing how far we've come. I'm slowly looking up the various ICs, one turned out to be a keyboard decoder/interface chip so it seems like he was working on making a computer of sorts (or disassembled one).

Anonymous said...

Dallas Semiconductor chips were in everything in the 1990s. If they had had the Y2K bug we really would have had gas pumps, ATM machines etc. failing.

I tested a few types of these for Y2K and was very relieved that they were OK.