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Old 28th July 2009, 08:50 PM   #1
rongon is offline rongon  United States
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Location: Across the river from Rip's big old tree...
Default Sources for enclosures, parts, standoffs, tubing, etc?

Looks like I'm building myself a phono preamp. I'll need to keep it cheap and simple, and I already have the pwr xfmr and 'lytics for the PSU, so I'm going for TL's "Valve El Cheapo" with the PSU in a separate enclosure.

I'll need a few things, and hoping I can source them from as few places as possible...

1) Enclosures for preamp and PSU (but need to be cheap). Both will be fairly small. I'm hoping for a step up from the Bud box "bucket metal" look. Only need 1x 12AX7 and 1x 6DJ8 tube sockets on the audio enclosure. PSU will be larger, with a Thordarson pwr xfmr, a couple of small Stancor chokes and some fairly large 'lytics. Sand-rectified.

2) Resistors for RIAA - I'm thinking Mouser or DigiKey. Don't want to pay boutique prices. I'll probably spring for the Caddock type in the phono load and maybe the first stage plate load. Carbon comp for grid stoppers. Other than that, RC55 or CCF series metal films for the rest. Other (budget-conscious) suggestions that would make for a noticeable improvement?

3) I have polystyrene/foil caps in the values/voltage ratings needed, no problem. If I could find .01uF and 1000pF in silver mica I'd take 'em, but that's not critical at this point.

4) Teflon tubing for c. 22 ga wire, and c. 14 ga for PSU to audio box wiring harness.

5) standoffs, pegboards suitable for point-to-point wiring.

6) For connecting separate PSU and audio circuit boxes:
Can I use 5-pin DIN connectors, as used for MIDI cables? I'd use a chassis-mount male socket on the PSU enclosure, with a cable-mount female coming from a cable hardwired to the audio enclosure. I'd make the cable myself, out of suitably sturdy separate wires covered with teflon tubing.

I tried searching, but one thing leads to another... There's so much stuff out there! I'm hoping experienced builders can help me narrow down the choices. Think "cheap" though...

Thanks!
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Old 28th July 2009, 09:00 PM   #2
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Surely you must know about this as well as the Hall Of Science hamfests in Flushing.
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Old 28th July 2009, 09:16 PM   #3
rongon is offline rongon  United States
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Oh, am I embarrassed! Of course! LEEDS!

That helps. I can't believe I forgot about LEEDS!

I didn't know about the hamfests in Flushing. Maybe something to investigate on one of these impossibly muggy weekend afternoons...

Thanks!
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Old 28th July 2009, 10:26 PM   #4
rongon is offline rongon  United States
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Did some googling, found some stuff.

Anybody know of some particularly good deals? Maybe a good source for reasonable looking enclosures that aren't $100+?

How about circuit cards with solder posts already installed? Like military wiring boards of yore. I remember somebody used to make those...

Sorry if I couldn't think of the right name for the above. All I can think of is "binding post" but I know that ain't it...

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Old 28th July 2009, 10:53 PM   #5
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They're called turret boards. Used to be made by Keystone or Vector. You can find them on feebay sometimes and through distributors. Expensive nowadays.
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Old 28th July 2009, 11:52 PM   #6
Matt BH is offline Matt BH  United Kingdom
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Sorry to jump in guys,
I think Mouser do turret lugs/tags in the US. I cant find them on the UK version of their site. I spent a long time trying to find the things.
Tube depot do them:

http://www.tubedepot.com/bp-turret.html

I use this guy in the UK, may be too expensive getting them to the US but they are the last word in quality:

http://www.turretlugs.co.uk/

You can also check out some of the Chinese sellers on fleapay, they do some ready made boards with turrets reasonably cheap. Some of the Chinese ones are punched/swaged plated steel, not really the best thing.

I did find a US manufacturers site of the very nice PTFE insulated turrets that Pete Millet uses, trouble is I decided to go and get windblows 7 and didnt keep any of my cookies or favourites
Cant find them now for the life of me.
Petes method of construction is great because it saves you having to think out a grounding plan, be it star or tree or a combination of both.

Anyway hope this helps.

Cheers Matt.

I didnt mean "saves having to think" grounding should be very carefully thought out. The ground plane method is just easier.

Double edit,

Some of the French lingerie thats a sort of peach almost flesh colour, seems almost orthopedic.
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Old 29th July 2009, 01:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Matt.B.H.
trouble is I decided to go and get windblows 7...
Hahaha I love it!
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Old 29th July 2009, 03:47 AM   #8
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Quote:
trouble is I decided to go and get windblows 7 and didnt keep any of my cookies or favourites
I was DUMM enough to bite on Vista. I'm not going to rush out and buy unlucky number 7. I should have known something was up when Newegg was selling Vista cheaper than XP!

Quote:
They're called turret boards.
I thought they were called tag boards. Either way they are available from Antique Electronics Supply. I use them for prototyping.

For odd sources of chassis and cages check out the kitchen and home furnishing departments at Target, Sams Club, Wal Mart or IKEA. I have seen some nice amplifiers made on inverted baking pans. I have used some wire mesh CD or DVD racks as tube cages. I got them at Target. I saw some stainless silverware holders at IKEA that I thought would make good cages for single tubes, but they were too expensive for my stuff.

Hamfests used to be a great source of tubes, parts and transformers. Many still are, but that sort of stuff seems less commom these days. I still go to every one that I can and often find good stuff. The biggest hamfest in the world is in Dayton Ohio. I have been twice. Each time I brought back 100+ pounds of tube stuff. Got it cheap too. I got a bunch of solid state parts for making radio equipment too.
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Old 29th July 2009, 10:53 PM   #9
Matt BH is offline Matt BH  United Kingdom
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He He, yes I fell right into the Vista trap, still having nightmares. I see they sell laptops now with a downgrade (or upgrade if you actually want to use your machine) disk.

Windows 7 works really well and is much more intuitive to use. I had a few problems with drivers etc. the last problem with the graphics (it was fairly minor on my machine, not so on a friends) has just been fixed by Microsoft. To be honest I would recomend trying 7 but be prepared for a few probs. but nothing on the scale of Vista. Stick it on another drive or a partition and have a play.

Its free right now until sometime in October. If you own Vista I believe it will be cheapish (in a Microsoft ripoff sort of way) to get a genuine key. I think this is the minimum Microsoft should do when you consider the amount of trouble they caused with a half finished OS that excelled at nothing except packing up when you need it.

Sorry this was off topic.

Cheers Matt.
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