[time-nuts] Surplus Places...

Bob Camp lists at rtty.us
Thu Apr 1 08:55:32 EDT 2010


Hi

There have *always* been multiple tiers to the surplus market. Catalogs of gear have always shown up with prices that were 10X (or 100X) what an item might be bought for. That was as true in 1965 as it is today. A *lot* of those old time outfits lived off of a buy it for < 1/3 list and sell it for > 2/3 list business model. Apparently there have always been people willing to pay those sort of prices.

The "universal PC instrument" is a lot like those cute little "all in one machines". Either you have a dozen of them each set up for a single task or you spend time converting back and froth between tasks. It's a drill press and I need a lathe ... It's an ohm meter and I need a frequency counter ....

Like the universal machine, once you do get it converted around, it's not *quite* as good at any one task as a dedicated machine. Mass and rigidity counts in machines ... self calibration only goes so far on an instrument. 

You can indeed get the task done either way. You'll get it done with less hassle with the dedicated gear. You'll save money with the all in one. There will be a market for both for a long time to come. 

Bob



On Apr 1, 2010, at 12:32 AM, Don Latham wrote:

> Well, there are more reasons for astounding prices. For example, Ebay was
> a good place to get stuff, until it changed from a marketplace to a
> virtual storefront. A bunch of buy it now's does not establish a
> marketplace where prices can be determined. So the BIN's have prices that
> seem outrageous.
> Personally, I think some of the older instruments, although nice, are
> becoming obsolete. See QEX for some examples. For $300-500 a universal
> front end, called a PC, can serve a bunch of instruments, and do a lot of
> other things as well. I've seen, but haven't built, soundcard driven
> instruments such as oscilloscopes, impedance measurers (is that a word?)
> and a lot more. Flexible software is easy to generate, and displays can
> get as fancy as needed. Calibration and holding calibration seems the
> biggest problem.
> IMHO, older instruments built around microprocessors have digitally driven
> parts such as attenuators, frequency sources,etc that might be adapted to
> PC's through USB adapters. Anyone done that?
> 
> Just an idle thought, but is there a group somewhere in netspace where
> this kind of info is collected?
> Pardon the sort of mind fart...
> Don Latham
> 
> 
> jimlux
>> Scott Burris wrote:
>>> C&H closed briefly to move and is now open in Duarte:
>>> 
>>> http://www.candhsurplus.com/
>>> 
>>> At Apex, a friend tried to purchase a nose cone from a rocket, but they
>>> declined
>>> to sell it to him because they were making too much money renting it out
>>> to movie studios.
>>> 
>>> Scott
>>> 
>>> 
>> 
>> That is precisely the reason for outrageous prices at Apex.  If it makes
>>  a good prop (spinning mag tape drives, panels with lots of switches
>> and lights, etc.) then they can make hundreds of dollars a week in rental.
>> 
>> 
>> 
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> 
> 
> -- 
> Dr. Don Latham AJ7LL
> Six Mile Systems LLP
> 17850 Six Mile Road
> POB 134
> Huson, MT, 59846
> VOX 406-626-4304
> www.lightningforensics.com
> www.sixmilesystems.com
> 
> 
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