HSC Santa Rosa (actually Rohnert Park) is closing their doors on May 4th. They are having a closeout sale that begins next weekend (April 27th) and runs through the 1st week of May.
I visited this small but convenient Halted branch often while I worked in Santa Rosa, and I’m sad to hear this news. Fortunately, I’ll be in the area next week and will have one last chance to visit before the store closes. (Unfortunately, I’m traveling by air, so I won’t be able to bring too much surplus junk back home.)
HSC closed their Sacramento store in 2007. With Rohnert Park closing next month, the original Santa Clara location will be the only one remaining.
More details below.
Attention HSC Customers:
After 27 years in the Santa Rosa area, HSC Electronic Supply of Rohnert Park is closing its doors for good on May 4, 2013. Halted Specialties Co. Inc. will continue to operate its main store, HSC Electronic Supply of Santa Clara.
Store Closing Sale!
Rohnert Park Location Only.
20% to 80% Off Entire Stock.
Saturday, April 27th to Saturday, May 4th
Our shelves are spilling over in Santa Clara so we’d rather blow it out than truck it back to support on-going Santa Clara operations. Please stop by to check out this last opportunity for deals in Rohnert Park and stop by our Santa Clara store when visiting Silicon Valley. Don’t forget to visit us at www.halted.com as well.
I just got an e-mail from HSC Electronic Supply announcing their 45th Anniversary Sale (aka Sidewalk Sale), which takes place this Saturday, Sept. 26th. If you are in Silicon Valley this weekend, this is definitely worth checking out. If you want to get an idea of what this event is like, check out my photos from last year’s “Warehouse Clearance Sale.” (It seems like they change the name of this event every year now!)
45th Anniversary Celebration
Local Customer? Come on in and celebrate with us and save
10%-60% on everything in our stores. One day only!
Out of the Area? For our online customers, from September
23rd to 27th, HSC will offer *FREE shipping plus an additional 10%
off any order over $50.00. Just mention “Anniversary Special” in
the shopping cart order notes and we’ll take care of your discount.
The 6,000 items listed online are just a sample of our extensive store inventory.
Don’t see what you need? Please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-442-5833.
HSC is having some online specials too, although if you shop online you are missing out on 90% of the fun, such as sifting through crates of miscellaneous electronics parts!
Every project I work on usually involves at least one trip down to the South Bay to visit HSC, and I usually find at least a few interesting odds and ends at their annual clearance sales. And while you’re in the area, I highly recommend a side trip to Weird Stuff Warehouse in Sunnyvale as well.
Many people have asked me for a cost breakdown of my Wifi Radio project. Well, here it is!
I added a link to possible sources for as many parts as I could. However, there were a few things I scrounged from local surplus electronics stores and couldn’t easily find a good equivalent online. I’m not expecting everyone to copy my design exactly (not everyone has a woodworking shop at their disposal), so use these numbers as a rough estimate only.
If you shop around you should be able to beat the listed prices on many items, so I see this as sort of a worst case scenario.
To flash the wireless router and create a minimal radio (with no user interface), you will need:
Cheap set of PC speakers (gutted for the speakers and amplifier) – $5 @ Weird Stuff
Oh yeah, and I almost forgot…
An awesome friend named Tony with a full woodworking shop in his garage who will make you a killer wooden enclosure for free – $priceless
Grand total (excluding the box) – $147.09
If you take out the cost of the development tools, namely the FTDI cable and the USBtinyISP, the total comes out to $105 (without the box).
By scrounging materials and using parts from your junkbox you should be able to reduce that figure even more, but obviously the grand total hinges on what kind of enclosure you use. Not everyone has a friend with serious woodworking skills willing to donate time and materials, but use this as an excuse to get creative.
I wanted a box that showcased the time and effort that I spent on the electronics inside, but that doesn’t mean an old boombox from the Salvation Army couldn’t work just as well.
When I first started this project, my goal was to keep the total parts cost under $100. On paper, it looks like I came pretty close to that, thanks to the donated box and excluding the reusable development tools like the FTDI cable and AVR programmer. To be honest, I probably spent twice that amount on spare power supplies, extra knobs, a second router to bring to NOTACON, and a bunch of other stuff that I didn’t end up using in the final project. But I’m pretty ok with that. I think this just highlights the fact that:
If you just want a Wifi Radio, it will always be cheaper to buy one off the shelf. But if you make your own, it will be infinitely more rewarding.
Earlier this year, there was an announcement that HSC was moving because their landlord would not renew the lease on the building they have occupied for the past 15-20 years. At the last minute they were able to negotiate a lease for half of their original space, forcing them to vacate what was previously the warehouse/mail order side of the building.
So far, the evidence of these changes to their customers has been very limited. Maybe there were a few extra items at the annual sidewalk sale and some extra bins of parts on the showroom floor, but overall things looked pretty much the same – until my most recent visit.
Now there is a new HSC Clearance Annex open to the public in what was formerly the employees-only warehouse space:
I found some neat things inside: IEC line filters, variable inductors, an assortment of crystal oscillators, bags of PCB mount right angle RCA jacks. Most items are $1-2 and many come in bags of 10-100 for that price.
They also had huge boxes of assorted hardware and electrolytic capacitors – you can create your own grab bag for $1. Usually these are only available during the sidewalk sales and are a surprisingly popular attraction: