Inspired by Kevin Kelly’s book Cool Tools: A Catalog of Possibilities, I have set out to document tools that I find particularly interesting or useful, primarily in my work as an electronics hobbyist and professional electrical engineer. This is the first post in that series.
Design Easy SMD Component Books
These SMD component books are super handy for all sorts of electronics prototyping, construction, and repair projects. I bought a full set of these books for my lab bench at the office some time ago and and have found them invaluable. I liked them so much that I bought a second set for home!
I prefer these component books over other types of SMD kits such as trays, bins, drawers, or bags because they don’t take up much space on the shelf and they keep components nicely organized in order by value. Componentsare easy to access and hard to mix up.
There are many other vendors on eBay and aliexpress that sell component books just like these, but I like Design Easy because they have reasonable prices and carry resistor and capacitor assortments from size 1206 all the way down to 0201. You can save on shipping by ordering a complete set at once.
Their “practical book” series contains an assortment of SMD resistors and capacitors in one book, while the separate resistor and capacitor kits are more complete and IMHO generally more useful, particularly if you use capacitors a lot and need a wider assortment of values.
Last month I cashed in some airline miles and finally got to visit some old friends and spend some time in beautiful Southern California. Some long-time readers of the blog may remember the last time I did something like this in 2009.
While I was there I visited my good friend Tony in Los Angeles, and we went on a tour of surplus electronics and swap meets that we called Surplus Summit 2012.
Since creating the Electronics Workbench Flickr group last November, I have received lots and lots of really amazing submissions from electronics hobbyists and professionals around the world.
My two biggest takeaways so far? I do not own nearly enough test equipment, and my shop is not nearly as well-organized or space-efficient as it could be (I need to use all available wall space and build up).
Here are a few of my favorite images from the group: