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Monday, August 3, 2020

Homebrew Resistor Kit -- Drew's Mouser BOM

I put the resistors in parts envelopes and cardboard boxes

Hi Bill,

You mentioned wanting to get a resistor kit.  If you'd like, I can
help you do what I did.

Then I noodled about it a bit.  And looked at mouser.

A tiny bit of code put together a copy and paste list of part numbers
that I pasted onto mouser's BOM order form.  And bob's your uncle.

In my case, a particular manufacturer's 1/4 W metal film 100 ppm as
they were 1.9c @ 100 pieces.  I created a copy and paste BOM for E6
over 4 decades plus E3 for a 5th and 1M and 49.9 ohms. Less than $2
per value for 29 values.  Not a bad price for the size of the resistor
kit.  I also figured if the value gap was too large, I could fill it
in with the other half of the E12 series.  (E6 series is every other
E12 series value.)

This could be tweaked.  Perhaps fewer resistors in each value.  Or add
some more special values or whatever.

Mouser was kind enough to cut tape and put each value in a flat
plastic baggy with a label as to what was inside.  Sorted in a file
box, it's a snap to grab a resistor.
Perhaps this is something I should post online to share?  Maybe
someone else already has?

On my todo list is to construct my self a homebrew BOM of capacitors.

If you're interested, I could update this and let you know what Mouser
can do for you.  It may not be your preference, but it is an
interesting option.

Best regards,



Drew:   Your message caused me to think about what I really need in a resistor kit.  I have been using some other resistor kits, but I end up using ALL of certain values and NONE of others.  Your message made me realize that there is valuable data in those old kit packages.  

I took a look a them this morning.   It seems I use the following values:  4.7, 10, 47, 100, 220, 330, 470, 1k,  2,2k, 3,3k, 4,7k, and 10k.  That's about it.  So maybe I just need to go to mouser and order, 50 of each.  I'm thinking 1/4 or maybe 1/2 watt? 

The packaging you describe sounds great.  How can I get Mouser to do that for me?  

I don't think I need the more sophisticated approach you used, but I'm sure we have listeners who could benefit from it. 

Any further suggestions?  

Thanks again,  

73  Bill 

Hi Bill,

Sounds very good.  It turned out to be simple for me to order a
ridiculously well stocked resistor kit, but doing something custom is
actually a great idea.  If you want both 1/4 and 1/2, get both.  (I
figured I could always make a 1/2 W resistor out of 2 1/4 watt

The packaging is just what they do.  No extra charge other than their
regular shipping and handling.

So, I did this in late 2018.  When ordered, two values were
backordered, but they shipped them out a month or 6 weeks later or
something.  Checking now, 660-MF1/4DC1000F (a 1% 100 ohm metal film
1/4 watt), I see it is out of stock with an ETA of June 1st for 10K
they are ordering.  The other P/N that was backordered was
660-MF1/4DC1503F.  Who knew 100 and 150K ohms were extra popular?
150K is in stock right now BTW.  Maybe it's random what they run out

Best thing is you copy and paste your list of P/Ns and quantity for
each and bam Mouser will tell you pricing and if anything is
backordered, etc.  If you don't like what you see, change your list
and try again.

I actually thought about what I wanted, then looked at Mouser to see
what they had and what the pricing was on it.

So, from this particular resistor family, I see the pricing is what it
was a couple of years ago.

if you order 50 pieces of that 150 or 100 ohm resistor, that is:
50*$0.055 = $2.75 for 50 resistors.

If you order 100 pieces of that 150 or 100 ohm resistor, that is:
100*$0.019 = $1.90

IT"S CHEAPER TO ORDER 100!  Well, at least for this resistor family
and for Mouser's price breaks.  You have to look at the price breaks
versus volume.  And of course, understand the minimum you need and the
maximum you can store in your lab.  :-)  Don't be ordering 10,000.

So, price breaks for these they show:

Qty.    Unit Price
1    $0.23
10    $0.055
100    $0.019
1,000    $0.014
2,000    $0.009
10,000    $0.008
25,000    $0.007

You can see that there's a good break at 10, 100, and 2,000.  The
quantity with a good break really depends, so you would have to look
at different vendor product families to see.  I don't think I looked
very long.  I probably knew I wanted 1/4 W (may have considered 1/8 or
1/2, don't remember).  I also think I knew I wanted metal film.  When
I saw the pricing on these at 100 pc and with 1% tolerance (so I could
double out to E12 series and have it make sense if it turned out to be
useful for me), I stopped shopping.

Here's the full BOM I ordered.  The top part is some extra parts I
wanted and those couple of special resistor values.  The lower part
was generated by just a few lines of python:



So, your BOM (4.7, 10, 47, 100, 220, 330, 470, 1k,  2,2k, 3,3k, 4,7k,
and 10k) would be the following.  Added the 4.7 by hand and deleted
the other values by hand.  Qty 100 each.
-----  Services & Tools button.  BOM Tool button.  Login (they
want account for the tools.  I can't complain.)  Upload spreadsheet or
copy and paste.  In this case, copy and paste.  In fact, copy right
out of this draft email and into their tool.  Next.  Then they ask me
for a name for the BOM and if I only want RoHS.  (RoHS is up to you.
I picked only RoHS, because I know all these parts are RoHS and it
won't warn me about lead poisoning or anything.)  Process BOM.

I had the 4.7 wrong, but they figure it out.  Ouch.  Pricey.  Maybe
you don't need so many, but $4.6 for 100.  Parallel a couple of 10
ohm, you'll have less parasitic L in your emitter circuit.  Change the
BOM before you click the add all to cart.  No problem.  Or maybe 4.7
is worth the extra money to a high roller such as yourself.  :-)

2 parts are at 0 inventory.  The 100 we knew about.  470 as well with
6K arriving 15June.  Yes, those ETAs are perhaps questionable.  Dunno.
They will ship you what they have and ship the rest later AT NO EXTRA
CHARGE.  :-)

A third part is at 123 pc inventory.  Act now before they are all out!
:-)  220 ohms.  6K due end of June.

The above would be $25.50 plus less than $10 for their cheapest
shipping option.  Not a bad price for a well stocked CUSTOM kit and
it's really easy to do.  And these are good parts with specifications
and tempcos etc. all in the data sheet.  Sure, you don't need it 99%
of the time, but if you wanted it, because you were doing something
fussy, you have it.

You could cut that price down quite a bit if you went carbon or wider
tolerance.  (Who needs 1%?  This is electrical engineering, not
mechanical engineering!)  Or maybe another manufacturer.  It's easy to
browse on Mouser and figure out those other options quickly and what
it may do to help you out.  Of course, when you get to a price of
$0.00, you still have the flat rate cheapest Mouser shipping as the
floor on what price you can achieve.

Mouser will also give you a print and email with price, part number,
description of everything in your custom kit.  And each pouch is
labelled.  Crazy!  :-)

Another crazy thing is with these BOMs is that you can easily share
them with others.

Best regards,


Saturday, August 1, 2020

SolderSmoke Podcast #224: Mars. Spurs. Bikes. SDR. NanoVNA. Antuino. MAILBAG

SolderSmoke Podcast #224 is available:

1 August 2020

--The launch of Perseverance Mars probe with Ingenuity helicopter.
--China’s Tian Wen 1 on its way – radio amateur Daniel Estevez EA4GPZ is listening to it! 
--Sci Fi Books:  Mars Trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson.  No skip on Mars :-(
--We have some sunspots!  SFI now 72 and the Sunspot number is 23. 

Bill's bench: 
--Conquering Ceramic Spurs in Q-31   Roofing filter -- sort of 
--NE602 for a Q-75 converter – Gilbert Cell. 
--Measuring low power levels out of NE602.  Antuino better than 'scope . 
--NanoVNA   Really cool stuff.  SDR in there. 
--Building a 455 kc LC filter from QF-1 rubble. Using LTSPICE, Elsie... 
--Reviving my bicycle AM radio – The “All Japanese 6”
--Understanding L Network impedance matching. 
--Bill’s new resistor kit from Mouser. Thanks to Drew N7DA. 


Pete's Bench: 
--Lockdown Special 
--BPF work on SDR Rig
--I U W I H 

VK3HN Summit Prowler 7
VK2EMU “The Stranger”
SM0P  HB uBITX in Dubai
AE7KI  Worked him in VK from London
ON6UU  EA3GCY’s 4020 rig
KA4KXX A Simpler Mighty Mite
KD4PBJ Radio Schenectady
W3BBO 12AU7 Regen
KE5HPY Another 12AU7 regen
N5VZH Ne602 Converter
KY3R Wall Art
G4WIF  Spectrum Analyzer in your pocket
W2AEW  Talks to UK Club
KK0S Sent 455 Kc IF cans
KL0S Making 9Mhz filters
VU2ESE  Diving into simple SDR schemes
Dean KK4DAS  Amateur Radio Astronomy

Friday, July 31, 2020

D-Lab Re-Caps a Drake 2-B (Very Economically)

A bit ugly, but it gets you there!   I like it. 

Thanks to John KE5ETX for alerting us to this video. 

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

A 75 Meter AM Quarantine Converter for the Q-31 Receiver (video)

A while back Fred KC5RT sent me a nice collection of parts, including some 6 MHz crystals.  I had been thinking of making a converter to put ahead of my Q-31 receiver.  When Fred's 6 MHz rocks arrived, I knew that The Radio Gods Had Spoken (TRGHS).  

I found some NE602 chips in the junk box.   I used an Altoid-sized box for the case.  The toroids are from W8DIZ.  I use trimmer caps from KC5RT to resonate the input and output circuits.  

Hooray!  Now I can listen to 75 Meter AM on the Q-31.  I may have to build a transmitter to go with this contraption.  

Thanks again Fred. 

Monday, July 27, 2020

Paul Taylor's Quarantine "Summit Prowler 7" and some Radio Archaeology

Paul Taylor VK3HN has really outdone himself in this video (above) and blog post. He describes coming across a somewhat mysterious homebrew SSB exciter with some cryptic markings on it. Paul eventually figures them out.  We still don't know who the builder VK3WAC was -- can anyone find him in their logbooks? 

As Paul goes through the description of the transceiver he built around the mystery exciter, he mentions a number of hombew heroes including Farhan VU2ESE, Peter DK7IH, Eamon EI9GQ (I have to get his book!), and Don W6JL.  Also,  our beloved SSDRA book plays a prominent role in the story. 

Paul's video is really beautiful -- at one point the camera pans the landscape and we see kangaroos in the field.  It is also refreshing  -- as we suffer in the heat of the northern hemisphere summer -- to see Paul and his friends out on the summits in their winter coats and hats.  

It looks to me as if Paul built this rig during the current emergency, so I will list it as a Quarantine rig.  Every dark cloud has a silver lining, and Paul's rig has added a bit of silver to the dark COVID cloud.  Thanks Paul.

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Alan Wolke W2AEW on IMD, NanoVNA and more (presentation to UK club)

This video is another reminder of how lucky we are to have Alan Wolke W2AEW as a fellow radio amateur, and as a teacher and mentor. 

In this video, Alan is talking to the Denby Dale Amateur Radio Society in Yorkshire, UK. 

The first part of his talk is about IMD products, the importance of 3rd order products, and the benefits of attenuation. 

The second part of the talk (after a few questions) is a look at the NanoVNA, which Alan cites as the "Toy or Tool of the Year."   

I learned a lot from both portions of the presentation.  I now find myself wanting an H4 model of the NanoVNA (bigger screen).  Or maybe even an F model.   Thanks to Alan, I now know what S21 and S11 means. 

Thank you Alan, and thanks to the Denby Dale ARS.  

73  Bill 

Saturday, July 25, 2020

ANOTHER 12AU7 REGEN! W3BBO's Quarantine Receiver

Hi Bill,

I was really impressed with Chuck KE5HPY’s 12AU7 Quarantine Regen!  A very nice build and my hat is off to him!  It caught my eye, as I also built a 12AU7 regen during this period, my first “Hollow-State” unit in sometime. 

It would be interesting to find out what other construction projects fellow hams have involved themselves with during this trying time.

Keep melting solder!
73 de Bob W3BBO

Friday, July 24, 2020

Radio Schenectady

A while back I posted a picture (see below) of the shortwave dial of an old receiver used by my wife's grandfather.  I noted the odd  presence of 'Schenectady"  among the exotic foreign locations on the dial.  Pete immediately connected the dots by noting that Schenectady was the home of General Electric.  This week Chris Waldrup KD4PBJ sent us a great web site describing the shortwave stations in Schenectady.  Check out the tube that runs 100 kw AM (Big Bertha).

Chris also sent information about BIG AM broadcast band stations: 

In addition to Schenectady being home to  GE it is the city of license to clear channel AM 50 kW WGY 810.  WGY was started by GE so if the radio was GE it was probably a way to promote their station at the time. I heard mention of Rochester too and that would be for 1180 WHAM another 50 kW clear.  Both WGY and WHAM are still there going strong banging out their 50 kW.

And Pete reminded us of KDKA, describing its long-lasting impact on one of his ears:  

Let us not forget KDKA in Pittsburgh at 1020 which I think is no longer clear channel. I used to listen to KDKA on my crystal set when I went to bed at night. My bed had an exposed bed-spring which was my antenna. To this day there is a slight kink in one of my ears where my Brush headphones rested –I am a side sleeper.

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

KE5HPY's 12AU7 Quarantine Regen -- FB!

Bill and Pete:

Thanks for upping the frequency of your podcasts.  Each one is a welcome note to break-up the COVID monotony.

Following on to Bill’s 31m rx, I am pleased to have a new regen on the air and performing well.  This started as the 12AU7 Hartley circuit found on the web; however, the original circuit needed some further work IMO.  I made a number of modifications – outboard 30 MHz LPF (to remove our local Spanish FM station), inductive antenna link, variable cap for antenna coupling adjustment, up to 24V on the plate, extra by-passing, NE5532 audio section vs LM386 and a switched cap for a lower “band”.  It’s still a starved triode oscillator/audio amp and it has that regen presence.  Best DX is Singapore (BBC) and Madagascar although it’s ideal for easy listening on 19-60m to Romania, Greece, Cuban music, Spain, etc.  As Bill said, there is still plenty worth listening to on a homebrew AM rx.  40, 30 and 20m copy OK, but bandspread is tricky! Adjusting regen is good for +/- 1 kHz, kind of a poor man’s BFO adjustment.   I heard a TI station calling CQ on 20m and called him back on my Icom for a QSO. 

By the way, this rx has some serious vintage mojo – Hammarlund varicap, National coil form, Millen dial and an RCA tube.  The all-star team plays great together! It’s a kick seeing the filament glow while putting RF through recycled parts made decades ago.



Tuesday, July 21, 2020

A Quarantine Mighty Mite

'Tis a thing of beauty. 

    I just decided here over the COVID period to head back to basics here and build a Michigan Mighty Mite with a Color burst crystal I had here. And wouldn't you know it, it works!  Here's a couple of pictures, it's not pretty at all. Needs to be mounted on something. 


Designer: Douglas Bowman | Dimodifikasi oleh Abdul Munir Original Posting Rounders 3 Column