Tag Archives: Swapmeet

Mike and Key ARC Swap Meet March 7th, 2020

The 39th annual Mike and Key ARC Swap Meet will take place on Saturday, March 7th, 2020 at the Washington State Fairgrounds in Puyallup.

This is one of my favorite ham radio events in the Seattle area and I’ll be there again this year, hopefully with a seller’s table (still waiting on confirmation).

Edit: I won’t be attending after all. Seattle has been significantly impacted by COVID-19 and King county is discouraging people from attending events with large groups of people.

The Mike and Key Amateur Radio Club Swap Meet is next weekend in Puyallup, WA

The 36th annual Mike and Key Amateur Radio Club Electronics Show and Fleamarket will be held next Saturday, March 11th at the Washington State Fairgrounds in Puyallup, WA.

This is one of the best amateur radio events in Washington state and one that I look forward to every year. A couple years ago I came home with a working Hameg HM-507 analog+digital oscilloscope (pictured above) for a hundred bucks!

I have a table at the swap meet this year, and I’ll be selling Geiger counter kits, misc. electronics, and amateur radio gear. Look for the MightyOhm banner.

I hope to meet some local folks there!

Surplus Summit 2012 Part One: Los Angeles

Testing 47GHz radios
(Photo: Tony KC6QHP testing out his 47GHz amateur radio. Remember this post? All that work paid off, the radio works!)

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.

Continue reading Surplus Summit 2012 Part One: Los Angeles

Coil in a can

Coil in a can

Last weekend at the Electronics Flea Market I picked up some very strange items, including this one, pictured above.  It’s a tin can that looks very similar to an ordinary soup can, except that it has the following markings on it:



Thus far the only information I have learned from the markings are that NSC.OAKLAND stands for the former Oakland Naval Supply Center, closed a decade ago in 1998.  According to Wikipedia, NSC supplied components to the fleet in the Pacific during WWII.  Beyond this I have not been able to find any information.  Presumably this is a replacement part for some piece of obsolete military hardware.  A “coil” is another name for an inductor, a clue that this may be part of a radio system or other high frequency equipment.

After staring at this mysterious object for almost forever (a week) I decided to open it.  Realizing that the can could be full of cold war era hazardous chemicals, munitions, objects under high compression, or nasty sharp edges, I did this very carefully and documented the entire process of discovering the contents.

First, the obvious – opening the can.  Pretty straightforward.

Coil in a can

What’s inside?

Coil in a can

Weird.  Lots of oiled green paper.  Whatever is inside is packed very well, when the can is shaken nothing moves around.

This is the clump of stuff to come out.

Coil in a can

Packing material?  The precursor to styrofoam peanuts?

Below the packing material…

Coil in a can

What’s this?  Vintage dessicant!!!

The last object left in the can looks interesting.  It’s wrapped in oiled green paper and sealed with tape.

Coil in a can

Inside the paper we find this:

Coil in a can

Not a huge surprise – it’s a coil (inductor).  It has a knob or grabby thing on the top and a funny connector on the bottom.  It looks brand new.

Here are a few more pictures.

Coil in a can Coil in a can Coil in a can Coil in a can

The markings are “ARC” and “7270 239 KC”.  ARC might be American Radio Corporation?  239 might be 239 kHz (kilocycles)?  Hard to say, google didn’t turn up anythign interesting.

An impressive amount of stuff was packed into that can!

Coil in a can

This solves the mystery of what’s in the can, but what is it for?  Does anyone know?  I’d love to find out – leave a comment or contact me directly.