List of Mail Order Electronics Companies


Chapter 1) About the Author & Further Information

[Document Version: 2.18] [Last Updated: 9/15/96]

John Woods' List of Mail Order Electronics Companies

Author: John Woods, WB7EEL
E-mail: or
Revision: 2.18
Last updated May 2, 1995
Some updates/links by the Editor on release date.

It has been a while since I posted this, and some parts may be seriously out of date. I hope to be able to find time to verify more of this list soon and post any needed corrections. Note that updated copies are available via WWW and FTP from my home system,

If you have any corrections/addition, please send them to me using this [Feedback Form] and I will forward them to John Woods. Thanks!

This file, and many others, are available for anonymous ftp from, in /pub/ham-radio (this article is "mail_order" in that directory). It is also available from my WWW server at URL:, and via ftp at URL: The WWW copy is the one I edit, the ftp copy gets updated sporadically.

(From Filipg)

You can also get this list (usually current) in full HTML glory from

I have also added/changed entries for:

  1.1) UK Sources FAQ

(From Alan R. Winstanley)

The latest version of my UK Sources FAQ gives more than 250 names, addresses and stuff of UK based manufacturers and distributors of components and services. This is subdivided into more 20 categories. All new entries are welcomed. You can download the UK Sources FAQ from: (60k)

Chapter 2) Introduction

Here is my list of companies which will sell electronic components in small quantities. Many of these places I have bought from, several I haven't. Being a ham radio operator, I am most interested in RF components, and in particular, air variable capacitors, which tend to be scarce (and tend to be used or surplus even if I've otherwise labelled the seller as "NEW").

Categories are:

Distributors and sellers of new components, or "new and some used" in a couple of cases.
Usually overstocks, occasionally used equipment. Ideal for stocking the junkbox, usually have dependable stock lines of resistors, capacitors, and some semiconductors, but won't have those LCD modules forever... An invaluable resource, don't shy away from them.
In particular, crystals and toroidal cores.
Ham radio kits, random electronic kits, whatever they have.
Separated out because of some twisted sentimentality, I suppose. Intended to honor one or two ham spare-bedroom operations. Note that sending $1 along with catalog requests is a big help for these folks.
A small selection of publications dealing with electronics, especially RF electronics.
Clubs for low-power amateur radio enthusiasts; frequently have publications with quite a bit of technical content (which is why I'm a member of QRP clubs headquartered thousands of miles from where I live :-). Note, this is generally practical technical content (how to build it) rather than theoretical technical content (why it works), but definitely more than Contester's Quarterly.

Note on shipping costs: I don't always update these frequently enough, and they're generally for continental US unless otherwise mentioned.

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  3.1) Digi-Key

701 Brooks Ave. South
.O.Box 677
Thief River Falls, MN 56701-0677
+1-800-DIGI-KEY (344-4539)
+1-218-681-3380 (FAX)
No minimum, $5 handling under $25, free and very complete catalog, very nice indeed. Prices aren't always the best, but rarely excessive. Weak on RF specialty parts (though they now have the ever-popular NE602AN), but they do have blue LEDs.

  3.2) Mouser Electronics

Mouser Electronics	Mouser Electronics	Mouser Electronics
  11433 Woodside Ave.	2401 Highway 287 North	12 Emery Ave.
  Santee CA 92071	Mansfield TX 76063	Randolf NJ 07869
Mouser Electronics
  370 Tomkins Court
  Gilroy CA 95020
Catalog Subscriptions:	(800) 992-9943 (Continental US only)
Sales & Service:	(800-34-MOUSER 
                        (800-346-6873) (US, Puerto R., Canada)
Very complete catalog of brand-new components (though no air variables). Usually quick service, $20 "minimum" ($5 charge under $20). When ordering, you may want to be sure to ask about availability and shipping locations; they have several warehouses, and frequently orders will get sent from several warehouses (which drives up the shipping costs). Export orders have a $100 minimum, except for Canada and Mexico.

  3.3) Ocean State Electronics

Ocean State Electronics
.O. Box 1458
Westerly RI 02891
+1-800-866-6626 (orders)
+1-401-596-3590 (FAX)
Minimum $5, S&H $4, $2 for catalog. Wide array of RF parts, especially air variables and B&W coils. Reportedly getting a bit slow filling orders.

  3.4) Radiokit

Radiokit		(store is located at:)
.O.Box 973		169 Jeremy Hill Rd.
Pelham NH 03076		Pelham NH 03076
+1-603-635-2943 (FAX)
No minimum ($3 service charge if under $20), many kits, lots of J. W. Miller chokes & coils, B&W coils, RF switches, Millen variable capacitors, lots of parts in general. As of 24-Feb-94, they are again STILL out of catalogs, and just barely might have one by Dayton this year. They do accept mail orders, but you'll have to call for prices and availability. A classified ad in 3/94 QST says "Call/SASE", I guess they may have fliers.

  3.5) Circuit Specialists Inc

Circuit Specialists Inc
. O. Box 3047
Scottsdale AZ 85271-3047
No minimum with check or money order, $15 otherwise. $3 S&H. New electronics, good RF assortment, increasing infestation of computers.

  3.6) Active Electronics

Active Electronics
11 Cummings Park		237 Hymus Blvd
Woburn MA 01801			Pointe Claire, Quebec, H9R 5C7
+1-800-677-8899 (Main number for US and Canada)
+1-514-630-7410 (International)
+1-514-697-8112 (FAX)
$25 minimum, $5 S&H UPS, catalog has a "$10 Suggested retail price" but they sent mine for free. They have 7(?) stores in the US (Chicago IL; Baltimore MD; Woburn MA; Detroit MI; Mt. Laurel NJ; Long Island NY; Seattle WA) and 10 stores in Canada (Quebec City; Montreal (2); Ottawa; Mississuaga; Winnipeg; Calgary; Toronto; Edmonton; Vancouver BC). Each store has its own 800 number and FAX number, call the main number(s). International orders are to be mailed to the Canadian address, but they want payment in US funds! Lots of stuff, oriented more toward supplying last-minute requirements of companies than hobbyists, but perfectly happy to take your money in small doses (stores have no minimum order). The $25 minimum for certain items is no longer explicit, but they note that some items will "ship in factory minimum package quantities", which might be worse.

  3.7) Maplin Electronics Ltd

Maplin Electronics Ltd.,
.O. Box 3,
SS6  8LR
Phone numbers: your international code 
+44 702 554161 for sales
+44 702 553935 Fax
+44 702 556001 Tech enquiries(2-4pmGMT)
"Over here [in the United Kingdom] the main hobbyist electronics supplier is Maplin Electronics who stock a wide variety of equipment. They have a catalogue which can be shipped for 10.65 pounds sterling by air or 5.50 pounds sterling by surface mail. They accept Mastercard, American Express and International Reply Coupons. They have at least one type of air-filled variable capacitor!" (Thanks to Kev White at Cambridge University).

  3.8) Newark Electronics

Send catalog requests to:

 Newark Electronics
 4801 N. Ravenswood Ave.
 Chicago IL 60640-4496

 Tel:  1-800-4-NEWARK
 Tel:  1-800-463-9275
 Tel: +1-312-784-5100
 Fax: +1-312-784-3850

 International Fax: +1-619-691-0172 (Tel: 619-691-0141)
They don't have a single mail address or phone; instead, one is supposed to call the closest of three pages worth of branch offices. I don't feel like typing in the entire list (it's copyrighted, anyway :-), so send email for your "local" distributor, or call their administrative offices at the number above. They have a $25 minimum order; they are a Real Distributor, but accept small orders (over the minimum, of course). Their catalog currently 1488 pages; they are very complete (except, of course, for my favorite scarce item, the air-variable capacitor). Note that the catalog prices tend not to match reality all that often, so order by phone rather than by mail; prices tend to be higher than other places, but they have a lot of things that are hard to find from other outlets. Also note that they have six Canadian offices, and one UK office, and will take international orders at 500 N. Pulaski St., Chicago IL 60624-1019, +1-312-784-5100 (FAX +1-312-638-7652, TLX 6718690 NEWARK U).

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