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Components and Circuits For discussions about component types, alternatives and availability, circuit configurations and modifications etc. Discussions here should be of a general nature and not about specific sets.

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Old 15th May 2019, 5:14 pm   #1
avocollector
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Default What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

I will admit to rarely passing up a bargain on the internet and consequently have oodles of stuff I'll never use - but cannot bring myself to dispose of. In the hope of a more sensible acquisition policy I wondered what other people buy and store? The list below excludes tools, solder and consumables (heatshrink, heatsink paste etc)

Typically I have for vintage radios, and modern gear work;

1) Standard resistor values in various wattage sizes up to 30 megs. Also 30 or 40 w/wound ones in various wattage sizes and resistance values

2) Most values of electrolytic and polymer/disk ceramic caps from 6 to 450volts. Philips beehive caps in large numbers (was a large box going cheap)

3) 30-40 toggle switches in various guises dpdt etc. I buy all the decent rotary switches I come across as they seem to be hard to find in the exact configuration for replacement.

4) A few hundred valves of various types - would expect to have common ones such as ECC82 in stock but nothing too extreme or old. For example no 6E5 magic eye.

5) 50 or 60 meters as they seem to always cost the earth when you go out to buy a specific one.

6) A small range of 20 - 30 mains and output transformers.

7) About 30-40 speakers ranging from sub min 30 ohms to more normal size 9 inch oval 8 ohms

8) 30 -40 reels of enamelled copper wire in various gauges from 42 to 21 swg

9) 40 + mains neons, 6 volt indicator bulbs.

10) a dozen or so of most minor items battery holders, fuses etc.
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Old 15th May 2019, 6:55 pm   #2
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Default Re: What componenets do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Pretty much par for the course here as well. Added to that list...endless boxes of old PCBs/tat
"in case they come in handy" which is true about once a decade. I also have numerous motorbike engines and spare parts as my other hobby is building up old bikes. My general radio spares support probably goes back to the fifties and forties but not much before that time. I'm happy to be surrounded by old stuff but my wife doesn't always agree with it. Not in the house anyway.
Alan.

Last edited by Biggles; 15th May 2019 at 6:56 pm. Reason: typo
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Old 15th May 2019, 7:05 pm   #3
John10b
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Default Re: What componenets do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

The first thing I would ask is what do you repair? I used to repair TVs, Radios, Tape Recorders, Record Players, Microphones, Amps and many domestic appliances. Consequently I would keep a wide range of components in stock.
Now in my retirement i only restore for my own pleasure and as a consequence i only keep a few popular components. I can very quickly get most bits that I need by return of post.
Cheers
John
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Old 15th May 2019, 7:28 pm   #4
MrBungle
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Default Re: What componenets do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

I've taken to not bothering to keep parts in now. I never use most of them which is a bit of a false economy. Had a bit of a clear out in the end. Just buy stuff RS next day mostly.
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Old 15th May 2019, 7:48 pm   #5
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Default Re: What componenets do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

What do I keep in stock? Whatever I DON'T need, or that's how it seems.

Seriously, it's resistors — not many over 1MΩ, capacitors (high and low voltage), BC327s and '337s, LM317s, 741s, 555s and LM386s. Other than that it tends to be things that I've bought in a large pack and only immediately used one or two.

Used stuff is mostly valves, speakers, transformers and the like plus various bits of telephones.
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Old 15th May 2019, 8:06 pm   #6
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Everything it seems till it is something I need! Possibly far too much as I am loath to bin stuff.

There are some NOS TV spares here which I must list and offer to others for the price of postage. IC's and all sorts of rare bits.
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Old 15th May 2019, 8:13 pm   #7
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Default Re: What componenets do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Our department was the last to leave Marconi's Waterhouse Lane site. When Marconi Marine moved out, they abandoned their stores and said we could help ourselves, so I have resistors, capacitors and reels of wire too numerous to mention, as well as thousands of small metric and unified screws and hundreds of assorted 1970's vintage semiconductors and 1 1/4" glass fuses. I am never going to use them all but I have plentry of room in the loft. Helping out forum members from time to time with unobtainium bits has helped to justify keeping my stuff.

I also have a small collection of phono plugs, jack plugs in 1/4", 3.5 and 2.5 mm sizes, mono and stereo, and DC power plugs and sockets for making up ad hoc leads.

Last edited by emeritus; 15th May 2019 at 8:27 pm.
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Old 15th May 2019, 8:31 pm   #8
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Default Re: What componenets do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBungle View Post
I've taken to not bothering to keep parts in now. I never use most of them which is a bit of a false economy. Had a bit of a clear out in the end. Just buy stuff RS next day mostly.
Me too: a decade-and-a-bit back I moved house and so did a serious 'cull' of my acquired cruft. Out went all the old 1950s/60s/70s-style Erie carbon-resistors (they were only ever specced as 10%-tolerance but some of them had drifted 20, 30%) and loads of TCC Metalpack/Metalmite waxies-disguised-in-a-metal-case capacitors, along with bags of 'unmarked' transistors bought ages ago from the likes of Bi-Pak and Bi-Pre-Pak (two companies with similar-sounding names but no actual connection).

Similarly, I threw away the wooden cases of some 50s/60s broadcast-radios, on the basis that the cases increased the bulk but didn't improve their shortwave performance...

These days I'm happy to start on a project, do a quick 'needs-assessment' and stick in an order to RS - the bits arrive by 9AM the next day and I know the parts I'm then using are good.

About the only things I keep a 'stash' of are variable capacitors (old 500+500pF types, Jackson C804, Eddystone high-voltage VHF ones and the WWII-era Wingrove&Rogers types as used in RF24/25/26/27-units) and generic transistors [BC10x/17x, BF115, 2N2926/2N3702, 2N3055, NKT404/OC35 and the beefier RF types [MRF-series, Mullard/Philips BLY-series etc].

And I've got a stash of valves - again mainly RF-types: a few Acorns, some Octals [a complete set for my AR88 and S27, for example], B7G 1.5V ones for my R209-colony, some 6L6 for modulators, and power-bottles like the QV04/7, QV03-12 (5763), QV06/20 (6146), QQV03/10, QQV06/40A, 4CX350 - all of which I need because I have gear that uses them.
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Old 16th May 2019, 6:03 am   #9
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

About the same as what you have + 3 sheds full of crap/useful stuff. I hate throwing stuff away and being skint most of my life save stuff just in case, trying to keep tabs on it all, keep it tidy is wearing. I re-use wire cut from old gear even save 3" bits and have even caught myself going through my own bins which is just madness.

Andy.
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Old 16th May 2019, 7:28 am   #10
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Started with fixing TV's videos and audio stuff for extra pocket money and collected whatever parts came my way free from clear outs at work, cheap packs round the radio rallies and retirement clear outs. New parts from CPC and the like, now 30 years later have half a garage full of discrete parts from the 30's to the 90's enough for most of my needs. Just buy 1000V caps as I need them and a few other odds as and when.
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Old 16th May 2019, 3:08 pm   #11
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Pics of the bulk of my stash. Usual sources- stripped old sets (few bits still around from the '60s), junk sales, rallies, work, nowadays mostly Ebay or RS. Needless to say there's other locations around the county too, but not for any regularly used stuff!
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Old 16th May 2019, 3:12 pm   #12
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

As others I've got tons of stuff I've accumulated over the years, but the only thing I purposely keep a stock of are radial polyester caps, 400 or 630 V types, in a couple of standard values (10 nF, 47 nF, 100nF, 470 nF), for replacing coupling caps whenever the need arises. Most other stuff I can get hold of cheaply overnight at a local vendor, but not the radial caps hence a need to keep a small stock of these.

Anothing thing that I tend to stock up on is desoldering braid. The only brand I've found that works really well is Solder-Wick, and it's rather expensive so I tend to concentrate purchases to when I'm getting something else from the same supplier to minimize shipping costs.
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Old 16th May 2019, 5:20 pm   #13
Herald1360
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Do you mean axial caps? I would expect those to be harder to source locally than radial ones which are the usual PCB type.
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Old 16th May 2019, 7:17 pm   #14
ricard
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Yes, sorry, definitely., certainly, axial caps, of course.
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Old 17th May 2019, 6:19 am   #15
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Doesn't matter how many caps you have, you never have the right one. You might have numerous 10u from 25v to 400v, you get a repair, right value, right voltage... wrong size.

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Old 17th May 2019, 8:30 am   #16
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ricard View Post
Anothing thing that I tend to stock up on is desoldering braid. The only brand I've found that works really well is Solder-Wick, and it's rather expensive so I tend to concentrate purchases to when I'm getting something else from the same supplier to minimize shipping costs.
I have several reels of "non-Solder-Wick" that on it's own is useless, but I also have a pot of red flux (RS 20 years ago) that I dip the braid in and it works absolutely fine
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Old 17th May 2019, 9:42 am   #17
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Pulling a short length of dead wick through between the bench and a flux pen does the same job. Solder wick could definitely do with a "best before" date on the reel, maybe even "use by".
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Old 17th May 2019, 9:56 am   #18
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

I’ve not had any solder wick that has not needed extra flux.

I’ve just inherited loads of stock parts, resistors, capacitors and others. Many of the resistors are 1% and of unusual values. Loads of 1 & 2 watt carbon composition as well. At a rough guess there must be 250,000 in total. Should be enough to last my lifetime.
Just need time to sort and catalogue. Some parts I won’t need and will offer via the forum.
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Old 21st May 2019, 4:48 pm   #19
avocollector
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Default Re: What componenets do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John10b View Post
The first thing I would ask is what do you repair? I used to repair TVs, Radios, Tape Recorders, Record Players, Microphones, Amps and many domestic appliances. Consequently I would keep a wide range of components in stock.
Now in my retirement i only restore for my own pleasure and as a consequence i only keep a few popular components. I can very quickly get most bits that I need by return of post.
Cheers
John
Yep I should have said - like you retired and mostly repair/fiddle with/ build vintage radio or test instrument gear although I stretch to transistorised things but not as far as smd gear. My problem is we are not quite as well served by postal things here in NZ as you seem to be - here you can quite easily get a note 5 days later 'sorry we don't have that part in stock and next supply is expected in 6 months time'. The overseas suppliers are great but can cost - I wanted some specific value/voltage electrolytic caps recently and they were .08 cents each - BUT the postage was $25.00!!!
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Old 21st May 2019, 4:50 pm   #20
avocollector
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Default Re: What components do you keep in stock for repairs etc.

Thanks to everybody for their ideas - at least has given me some good pointers on ways to go to rationalise the mess and make sure I don't get another 100 or so 3 pin Grundig DIN plugs 'cos they were cheap'.
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