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meltwater
Posts: 1015
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Tue Jan 10, 2012 12:37 pm

Hi everyone,

I"ve just come to a problem where I am after a product which costs ~£3.50 and I can"t find anywhere which stocks it and will deliver it for free, due to minimum order values etc.

For many of us who want to play around with the R-Pi and hardware there will be a lot of times when you need the odd component costing very little to complete your project.

Therefore, I think a list of good sources which provide free or low cost shipping, or places which have localised pick-up branches will be useful.

The item I am after is (Note: I am based in the UK):

MSP430 LaunchPad Value Line Development kit

Here is a list of the electronic component suppliers I am familiar with:

UK Based:

Farnell – http://uk.farnell.com/ - Minimum £20 order, but free delivery (used to not have the min order limit).

RS Electronics – http://uk.rs-online.com/web/ - £4.95 delivery, a small number of pickup branches

Rapid Electronics – http://www.rapidonline.com/ - £5 delivery for above item (but item not stocked!)

Maplin Electronics – http://www.maplin.co.uk/ - £2.99 delivery, free delivery on orders over £35, a larger number of pickup branches (but item not stocked! – often prices are high)

Mouser Electronics – http://uk.mouser.com/ - £12 delivery, free delivery on orders over £50 (Not used before)

Digi Key - http://www.digikey.co.uk/ - £12 delivery, free delivery on orders over £50 (Not used before)

Worldwide:

Deal Extreme – http://www.dealextreme.com/ - Free worldwide delivery (takes a long time), limited selection of items for electronics (i.e. above item not stocked).

Anyway, as I said, I"m after this one part (without paying it"s cost again in shipping) but chances are will have similar problems with other one-off orders so hoping I"ve missed a good supplier somewhere.
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SeanD
Posts: 121
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:25 pm

Very rarely I find what I am looking from from an Amazon Prime supplier.  I know that in effect you are paying for delivery up front with prime but my household usually gets it's money back in the first month after renewal so I pretty much treat it as free.

You have not missed any suppliers and it is a real issue.  Some education establishments have schemes where students (or people who go and talk nocely to them) will pull things together into a weekly RS/Farnell/Mouser/Digikey order, that might be worth a try.

davidgoodenough
Posts: 74
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2011 11:55 am

Re: Best Component Shops?

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:26 pm

Not that it really matters, but RS Components have never charged me for delivery and I have been using them for years.  And it you look at their web site RS Component is the proper name not RS Electronics.

zippy
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Dec 30, 2011 1:28 am

Re: Best Component Shops?

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:39 pm

Check Farnell again, I think they may have recently removed the minimum order value. It's not appearing for me atm anyway.

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meltwater
Posts: 1015
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:56 pm

@SeanD: I may be able to sort something out at my work, but obviously may be tricky when it comes to invoices within the company.

@davidgoodenough: You are right, I'll update the RS name (when the edit button comes back...).

@zippy Farnell: It comes up when you get to paying, "The minimum Credit / Debit Card order value is £20.00".  It was fine in the past, remember doing an order last year for a few £, and it seems odd you simply can't make any order below £20 at all, seems odd.

Wondering if you have to be a company to open a proper account at these places (many of the limits are lifted then), I would expect so.
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zippy
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:24 pm

Yup, I've gone right upto pressing the "Confirm order" button and it's still showing free delivery and nothing about minimum order value.

I always pay by credit card but have been ordering from them regularly for well over 10 years so maybe they've removed the restriction from my account or something.

I just ordered components from them last week so not sure when I'll be placing another order but if you're stuck I could add your MSP430 kit onto my next order, mail you it and you could paypal me £5.

BTW another UK supplier is CPC, @ http://www.cpc.co.uk (or cpc.farnell.com )

they are now owned by Farnell but still run as a separate company so prices are sometimes cheaper from CPC, so worth checking. Unfortunately they don't stock the MSP430 kit either.

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meltwater
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:42 pm

@zippy:

Sounds like you have a special account, no worries (I just tried a new one just in case my expired card had anything to do with it).

Anyway, thank you for your kind offer, in no current rush for it at the moment and I may well find someone here at work ordering something anyway so will hold on for now, but I'll bare it in mind.
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ecw
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:14 pm

I ordered a couple of launchpads over a year ago when TI released them, and have since ordered a few extra bits, e.g. capacitive touch sensor board.  All directly from TI's website.  As far as I remember, there was no shipping charge.

Try it, it may still be the case.

Prometheus
Posts: 308
Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2011 11:09 pm

Re: Best Component Shops?

Wed Jan 11, 2012 9:42 am

I don't know if this is of any help, but I saw someone mention Bitsbox.co.uk in another thread. They're a UK-based company that doesn't seem to be in the list.

error404
Posts: 351
Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:49 pm

Re: Best Component Shops?

Wed Jan 11, 2012 9:52 am

You can get the LaunchPad directly from TI as ecw mentions. They aren't adding shipping for me to Canada, and it was free when I ordered mine at the release, so it's probably still free worldwide.

Here's a link: https://estore.ti.com/MSP-EXP430G2-MSP4 ... P2031.aspx

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Mezo
Posts: 55
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Wed Jan 11, 2012 10:11 am

I read on the launchPad wiki.

"There is currently no official support for the Linux operating system"

So was you intending using the with the Pi?

Mezo.

ecw
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Wed Jan 11, 2012 11:26 am

No official development support, but easy enough to do -

http://www.43oh.com/2010/11/a-.....der-linux/

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meltwater
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Wed Jan 11, 2012 11:37 am

Mezo said:


I read on the launchPad wiki.

"There is currently no official support for the Linux operating system"

So was you intending using the with the Pi?

Mezo.


Indeed, my plan is two fold…

1) Something to play around with hardware (my weak area) and test out circuits for connecting to the GPIO pins without cooking things.  I can do this then before I get a R-Pi…

2) Since it comes with a lot of ADCs and other I/O, it is possible to use it in a similar way to the PIC which Gert has put on the Gertboard (at least I think so).  You talk to it over the SPI bus and you program it to use the SPI messages to control the GPIO or pass back data from the inputs.  I still plan on getting a Gertboard since it offers more protection, but if I end up getting more than one R-Pi, I'd rather keep the Gertboard available for the next project…if possible.

Prometheus said:


I don't know if this is of any help, but I saw someone mention Bitsbox.co.uk in another thread. They're a UK-based company that doesn't seem to be in the list.



Sounds like a good site if the prices are good too!No Minimum Order.
ALL PRICES INCLUDE VAT.
Only £1.50 UK First Class Delivery.

Now, why can't I edit my first post???!???
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Prometheus
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Wed Jan 11, 2012 4:45 pm

meltwater said:

Now, why can't I edit my first post???!???
According to the permissions icon (it's the little pair of keys shown next to your username at the top of every forum page), it seems that we're only allowed to edit until a reply is made after our posts. So, it seems that you can't, unless that's changed for all users. :/

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meltwater
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Wed Jan 11, 2012 5:20 pm

Prometheus said:


meltwater said:


Now, why can't I edit my first post???!???


According to the permissions icon (it's the little pair of keys shown next to your username at the top of every forum page), it seems that we're only allowed to edit until a reply is made after our posts. So, it seems that you can't, unless that's changed for all users. :/


Thought I'd done that several times in the past.  I suggest it is updated, many users will be used to posting useful information about their projects on 1st post and then updating it as they need to...

Also means the OP can keep their thread tidy (ideally bringing important stuff to the 1st few posts to save it being lost).
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TonyD
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Thu Jan 12, 2012 1:24 pm

We still lucky enough to have a decent local electronics supplier

http://www.esr.co.uk/
Tony

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meltwater
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Thu Jan 12, 2012 1:56 pm

TonyD said:


We still lucky enough to have a decent local electronics supplier

http://www.esr.co.uk/


UK Carriage Charges

Value < £30                £2.50+vat

Value >£30 or >1kg     £6.50+vat

Value > £100              FREE



Thanks, looks like they have a good range of components and some useful kits too!
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A Magazine for Raspberry Pi Users
Read Online or Download for Free.

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meltwater
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Re: Best Component Shops?

Mon Jan 16, 2012 9:58 am

ecw said:


I ordered a couple of launchpads over a year ago when TI released them, and have since ordered a few extra bits, e.g. capacitive touch sensor board.  All directly from TI"s website.  As far as I remember, there was no shipping charge.

Try it, it may still be the case.


error404 said:


You can get the LaunchPad directly from TI as ecw mentions. They aren"t adding shipping for me to Canada, and it was free when I ordered mine at the release, so it"s probably still free worldwide.

Here"s a link: https://estore.ti.com/MSP-EXP430G2-MSP4 ... P2031.aspx


First off, I wasn"t ignoring you guys on purpose.  Secondly…I had looked at the site, and I had totally miss-read the signup forms and incorrectly thought it didn"t list outside the US/Canada…I was wrong!

So thank you for pointing it out, I"ve ordered myself a launchpad and it was also free shipping, so hopefully it"ll come in the next few weeks.

Edit: WOW, impressive it should come tomorrow!

So $4.30 and it is coming from FORT WORTH, TX going via MEMPHIS, TN to the UK and *apparently* due to arrive tomorrow!  Always impresses me when the shipping probably costs more than what you pay…

As for the lack of linux support for the debugger/programmer, although a pain, I can use another computer for that, so hopefully I can code what I need on there and play around with the hardware.  When I do get a R-Pi I may be able to link it via SPI and make use of it"s features (if I can code it), perhaps even write a bootloader if required.  Or switch to the Gertboard!

Either way, it"s cheap enough to have a play round with regardless.

Thanks for the help, keep the supplier suggestions coming, hopefully useful for everyone.
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A Magazine for Raspberry Pi Users
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