Techie Night August 11, 2015

Please join us at the East Plains United Church at 7:00pm on Tuesday, August 11th for a social evening of open discussion, show and tell and the introduction of the BBoP.  The meeting will be held in classrooms 10/11.  A Google Map showing the Church’s location can be found here:

Tonight’s meeting will be an open forum to show off and discuss your latest gadgets and projects.  Please bring along any project(s) you have been working on or any new exciting gadgets you have acquired this summer and share your experiences with the group.

I thought it might be interesting and beneficial to try starting a Big Box of Parts program for Techie Night.  This activity is very popular amongst a number of the online electronics experimenter communities.  The activity, usually called ‘Big Box of Parts’ (BBoP) is a box of shared parts which is circulated amongst community members who give and take freely (and fairly) from the box.  This idea is thought to have started out in the DIY Audio community online, but I think it most likely has its roots in amateur radio.  A lot of us already do this informally on a one-to-one basis, freely sharing parts we have in our junkboxes with each other.  I was thinking we could do something like this for Techie Night and make the ‘Box’ available at each of our meetings.  This could really turn out to be a lot of fun!  It might even come to the rescue one day…for that project you’ve been working on… which has been missing that impossible to find part!  It might even provide that spark of imagination and inspiration for your next project.  I think the most useful aspect of this activity is it can assist us all in learning about and using parts which we may not have had the opportunity to work with before.  I also think this is an activity which provides an opportunity to Elmer and share tips and tricks.  The only difference between the online community version and ours would be that we wount be shipping the box around member to member…it would be available at each Techie Night meeting and available upon request outside of Techie Night’s.

Usually a set of gentleman’s guidelines are kept in mind to keep things fair:

– Take parts out you can really can use

– Replace them with parts you may have extras of, can’t use or wont use (please try to give back an equal amount of stuff if you can … if not, not a problem, try to give back something when you can)

– In the spirit of education and sharing, if you are able to, please send Paul Stuart a picture and a description of what you got out of the box and how you were able to put it to use (i.e. education, project, prototype, repair, experiment, etc.).  It would be great to build an area on the website in the Techie Night Section about the Box of Parts, displaying some of the picture and stories of how members have benefited by this activity.

– If you come across something interesting and you have an extra, or a part you know you probably wont use, but think someone might, please consider donating it to the Box

– Please don’t add items which are not relevant to electronics or amateur radio

I’ll seed the box with some items and if you feel you have some parts to contribute or swap, please bring them along to help get this started.  Hopefully this takes off and is something we can all benefit from.


Look forward to seeing everyone able to make it out this evening!

Jason – VA3VNA


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