Thursday, February 4, 2010

Make Electronics (6) More parts...More Money

Spent all morning shopping online electronic companies to find the parts I need for the next set of experiments in Make: Electronics by Charles Platt. Must say this was not as easy as I thought. Might be that I'm not familiar with electronic components as of yet, but it took me about three hours of comparison shopping to find what I needed. I think if I was willing to spend a little more time I could have got everything from two companies and saved some shipping costs. At this point though, I just want the parts. Really wish MakerShed had put together a more complete set of components to go along with the book.

Ended up using these four online companies today.
Radio Shack $30.52
This was the hardest site to use unless you know the exact order number. Doing a general search just gives too much to sort through.

JameCo $28.78
This company seemed to have the best grab-bag kind of deals. Spent a little more here just to get an assortment of LEDs, capacitators, and resistors.

All Electronics $23.70
Found a few items cheaper here than the other sites. Good selection.

Mouser Electronics $26.54
Felt like I needed to know more to be able to use this site more efficiently. Huge selection, but I got overwhelmed several times as I was trying to find a specific component.

Surfed around eBay a bit and once again just didn't feel like I knew enough to make a reasonable purchase. Saw some good prices on bulk items and might have bought here if the shipping had been faster from some of the oversea suppliers. I will definitely be looking more closely at this location for future purchases.

Total cost of my online shopping today: $109.54
Total amount I've spent on my new hobby so far: $303.30
(I'm thinking this is the last big purchase I will need to make for a while.....I hope!)

Previous Posts:
[Image: "Money Grab"; Steve Wampler; Uploaded on September 27, 2008; (CC:Attribution)]


  1. It DOES get expensive, doesn't it? I've stopped adding up my costs (I put them on my blog but don't really want to know the final tally)... I treat it as an investment in my education and future happiness when I can start building things that I've been dreaming about doing...

    BTW, I hope you don't mind me posting a little blurb on my blog about yours - can't hurt readers to know about others doing this sort of thing.

    I hope you'll keep writing about your experiments... you may have success where I've had failure, so it'll be nice to be able to watch someone else document their experiences.

    James Floyd Kelly

  2. Jim,
    No problem.....but my write ups pale in comparison to yours. Thanks for the blurb.

    Cost isn't going to stop me from continuing. I feel the same way about it being an investment in my learning. I've wanted to do this for years, Platt's book was the final little push to get me started.


  3. I'm having a lot of fun... tonight I finally got my alarm system circuit working (Exp 15) and am now ready to start soldering it to the perfboard... my wife shakes her head, but I'm having a blast.

  4. Jim,

    You are much further along in the book than I am, but am enjoying your posts. My wife is wondering if I have lost my mind. Or possibly if she lost hers when she married a man who never seems to grow up.