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REFERENCE MATERIAL

I have always been a saver - you know, waste not, want not - that kind of thing I guess. Shortly after we were married, my wife started working on me to get rid of the boxes of "junk" I had collected. This went on for some time. Then one spring afternoon she demanded that I get rid of, or at least pear down "all that junk!" "Afterall," she commanded, "what on earth were all those of parts good for?"

I stuttered and tripped over my words for close to a half hour before realizing that I was getting no where fast. Then it came to me, like divine inspiration! I turned to her and said, "I guess what I'm getting at Honey, is . . . Parts is Parts!" And, having said that, got up and walked out of the room. Well, she never said another word to me about it. But I did overhear her bragging to a friend not long after that, that the security alarm system I installed didn't cost us a dime, "he just has all these parts, and to him parts is parts!" I rest my case!

I don't advocate salvaging most capacitors and resistors unless they have been employed in a circuit with point to point wiring, and then only when the lead length will permit their reuse. If most most of the circuitry you build utilizes printed circuits, however, salvaged resistors and capacitors can represent a cost savings. Of particular value are mica capacitors and high-power resistors. Ceramic disks and 1/2 watt resistors can be obtained en-mass from most electronic suppliers for a song and a dance. But, large ceramic wire-wound resistors, such as are found in older equipment power supplies are well worth the effort to save.

I don't suggest saving pots or variable resistors. These are fixtures that wear with use, and nothing is more frustrating than completing a project only to discover that the pot that was used is intermittent or has a skip. An exception to this rule may be large, wire-wound rheostats that show a limited amount of wear - but check both the wire windings and the wiper.

An exception to salvaging parts from printed circuits are certain resistors used in the power supplies of computer grade equipment. Often, medium power, very low value resistors can be located. These make excellent meter shunts. Since this type of resistor is often difficult to purchase directly, stripping and saving them may prove worthwhile.


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STUFF


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LEGAL LIMIT AMP PROJECT