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Saturday, November 6, 2010

Homebrew Transistors!

None of those store-bought parts for Jeri Ellsworth! Once again she makes us all look like a bunch of pathetic appliance operators. I like the "harvesting of Germanium" from a 1N34. And I found very interesting her comment about "early hobbyists" cracking open 1N34's and turning them into transistors by adding phosphor-bronze collectors.

This all makes me want to fire up my Fool's Gold crystal radio. WFAX is right down the road...

BTW: I'm very pleased to report that Jeri is currently reading "SolderSmoke -- Global Adventures in Wireless Electronics." I hope she likes it. She definitely has "The Knack."

SolderSmoke Podcast 127 is almost ready.


  1. I have a feeling that home made transistors weren't quite as rare as people might think in the 50s and early 60s. An old friend of mine, sadly now a silent key talked about making them, and it being one of those "crazes" that sometimes propogate around school and colleges, though how the information was passed around, I'm really not at all sure - word of mouth I guess.

    Also worth going back to the father of the integrated circuit (usually regarded as being Jack Kilby, but there were precursors, and like most of that sort of invention, had parallel strands) and looking at what he did - that could almost of been done at home by an enterprising amateur.

  2. Uh oh Bill, moving holes! But after reading SSGAWE, we all know how it REALLY works, don't we!

  3. Hmmm... Can't wait to see AA1TJ build a transmitter out of one of these!

  4. I'm loving Solder Smoke so far!


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