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How many should I have?

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Witchdoc59
(@witchdoc59)
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I have come into possession of buckets of components. This is both a blessing and a curse because I now have to sort it out.  My question is, how many different values of resistors should I have? 

I'd like to buy some parts bins like this one Makitoyo Double Side Tools Organizer, Customizable Removable Plastic Dividers, Hardware Box Storage, Excellent for Screws,Nuts,Small Parts, 34-Compartment, Black/Orange : Amazon.ca: Tools & Home Improvement.   

 

Any thoughts or comments greatly appreciated.


   
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Ron
 Ron
(@zander)
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Posted by: @witchdoc59

I have come into possession of buckets of components. This is both a blessing and a curse because I now have to sort it out.  My question is, how many different values of resistors should I have? 

I'd like to buy some parts bins like this one Makitoyo Double Side Tools Organizer, Customizable Removable Plastic Dividers, Hardware Box Storage, Excellent for Screws,Nuts,Small Parts, 34-Compartment, Black/Orange : Amazon.ca: Tools & Home Improvement.   

 

Any thoughts or comments greatly appreciated.

It doesn't matter how many resistors you have, the next project will require the one you don't have. If detailed storage is an issue, consider storing a range of resistors in one compartment, example 1K to 9K all in one compartment. I buy new 'better' storage boxes all the time and throw away those that didn't 'work' for me. We are all different when it comes to organization. Be thankful you have the parts, you will work it out eventually.

 

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DaveE
(@davee)
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Hi @witchdoc59,

  Ron @zander is correct ... your stock will never have all the values.

If I had more space and larger budget, I would aim for something like Bill  (@dronebot-workshop) has in his workshop!

But, I am limited by space, as well as not liking the cost of buying lots of drawers/boxes, for the many tiny electronic parts. So the small parts like resistors, I am stapling or double-sided taping to sheets of A4 card. Then using a comb binder to make the cards into A4 size 'books' of parts. Hence, they can be laid out in fairly ordered way.

Many parts come on bandolier/tape or in small bags, both of which are easy to stick to the card directly. I also bought a pack of a 100 small zip type bags for some that came as 10 or more types in the same bag.

Of course some parts are too large for this approach and need alternate accomodation.

It is also playing fast and loose with anti-static precautions, so would not be appropriate for anyone making devices for sale or use in a safety critical situation. I should mention, my climate tends towards the cold and damp, and doesn't include air conditioning, so static electricity is far less of an issue than in some other parts.

Best wishes, Dave


   
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Will
 Will
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@witchdoc59

Having a lot of resistors can be very helpful because you can connect them in series when you need a larger value and in parallel when you need a smaller value. You'll find that there are some values that you'll use all of the time (300 up to 1K for LEDs for instance) and some that you'll never use at all.

I'd say buy a cheap multi-valued set with, say 10 of each value. Then start ordering larger numbers of the values from the boxes that empty out first.

Remember that eventually you won't need the same size box for each value because you'll use them at different rates and so you'll wind up by getting bigger containers for those values in larger quantities.

Experience is what you get when you don't get what you want.


   
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ron bentley
(@ronbentley1)
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@witchdoc59

All sound advice.

If you dont sort, list or catalogue your parts then you will not know what you have. 

Ron B

Ron Bentley
Creativity is an input to innovation and change is the output from innovation. Braden Kelley
A computer is a machine for constructing mappings from input to output. Michael Kirby
Through great input you get great output. RZA
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robotBuilder
(@robotbuilder)
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@witchdoc59

Just how many resistors do you have? You don't want to have to search for the one you want so sorting them into piles of the same value would be a good idea and probably good practice at reading the colour code. Resistors also come in different wattages and tolerances (how close a particular resistor might be to the colour coded value shown). Personally I wouldn't bother with a big bag of mixed resistors because I couldn't be bothered sorting them out particularly the small 0.5 watt versions that I have to use a magnifying glass to read and even then the colours are kind of hard to figure out. I just buy the ones I need, and they tend to be all I ever need, in packets with their details on the package. Probably I should just use the multi meter to read the values 🙂

 

resistors
This post was modified 2 months ago 2 times by robotBuilder

   
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DaveE
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Hi @witchdoc59,

Of course, some people will be looking for 1st class parts, chosen for a specific design, from 100% reputable sources, etc., and depending upon your project, this might be the best and maybe only approach.

However, if you could make use of a 'spares' box of pseudo-random bits that you can drag out at a moments notice, and don't have too many concerns (beyond obvious frustration) if a specific part turns out to be of lower quality than you hoped or useless, then you may want to take a different approach.

I did a few modest shopping expeditions for some packs of resistors, capacitor, transistors and more, in Banggood and AliExpress .. '£1-£3 pack' will often buy quite a lot of parts, and if you buy several different types from the same place, the postage is often much less the individual postages would be, although you need to watch it very carefully. Also, with AliExpress if the total order of parts is over about £9 (before postage), to the UK, they tend to bundle them up and air freight the bag full in, taking about 2 weeks - but note this does not apply to everything. Just remember it is a bazaar, so shop carefully and compare for best deals.

A few parts, particularly transistors, certainly required some careful examination, with a magnifying glass, and even matching up with the order, as they were printed with code numbers, not type numbers. But the majority were clearly labelled... e.g the resistors had the value stamped on the bandolier, as well as the individual part markings.

And one of my higher value purchases (£5 delivered maybe?) was a magifying glass with two lenses and  LED lighting .. that has already earnt its cost!

Will I have every value I want for my next project .. probably not, but I hope it is a start!

Best wishes and good luck with whatever you decide, Dave


   
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