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May 27, 2011 AT 6:48 pm

@RadioShack is going (back to) DIY

They have a blog post here, post in their comments what you’d like to see via HaD.


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19 Comments

  1. I stopped in the RadioShack in the local while we were in the mall a few weeks ago. They had some poorly stocked drawers of components and the engineer’s notebooks they’ve had for years. No prototyping boards, no breadboards. They did have an overpriced basic soldering iron and some solder suckers. It was very disheartening to see the last local place where you could pick up some miscellaneous stuff for a project with hardly any supply. The sales associates didn’t care about anything but selling mobile phones. Hopefully they’ll start to restock, otherwise it’s not even worth the gas to see what they have stocked anymore.

  2. I went to my local RS recently as well. The one employee there was sitting on the floor watching TV. I was looking for an ATX pin removal tool but didn’t look like they had such a thing. I then saw a gizmo on clearance for maybe $2. I went to checkout and the employee was gone and I heard a different voice in the backroom.

    At this point, it may be too late for them to try to get back into the game. Looking at their parts cabinet and tool wall, they didn’t update anything in years.

    Adding new items in stores won’t be enough – they’ll need to train their employees if they have any hope of picking up a piece of the “maker” community. I still remember a while back, maybe 10-12 years ago, when I was looking for a particular capacitor value. The employee felt the need to “correct” me and informed me that they didn’t have that particular “capacitator” in stock but I could order it from the catalog.

  3. “LED lights, capacitors and ”

    I’ve played that bit repeatedly and I can’t figure out what she’s saying.

    Anyway, I was just in a Radio Shack a couple days ago looking for resistors. They had some bad soldering tools, a *ton* of connectors, some LEDs and a couple of capacitor packs, but no resistors. A the salesperson she came over to help me out; “What’s a resistor? Can you describe what it looks like?” As someone who’s probably still got a Radio Shack Battery Club card in the back of my desk, it was quite a sad panda moment.

  4. The U.S. public education system intentionally suppresses the development of skills in science, engineering, and mathematics. So there’s no market for “Geek” or “Nerd” stuff. Give up on this Radio Shack. You’re better off stocking iPhones and anything else that Tweets or does Facebook. That’s where the money is for the foreseeable future.

  5. bruce she says dip shunts

    yeah they seriously need people who at least have some idea of what the components are and do

    my guess is they’re gonna screw this up somehow
    seems like they think by just putting a couple new items in the store it’s going to change everything

  6. George Graves

    “LED lights, capacitors and….”

    I think she said…DIP Shunts. Either that or what she said wasn’t very nice. 😉

    I will say that the day that your realize that you know more than the guy working behind the counter is a rite of passage for every young want-to-be engineer. From then on, Radio Shack tends to be more of a hindrance than helpful. It’s too bad that there isn’t an Radio Shack alternative – I guess there’s not much room in that market.

  7. DIP shunts?

    That’s what it sounds like she’s saying, but… how is that the first thing that springs to your mind after LEDs and capacitors?

    Not resistors, not inductors, not op-amps, but DIP shunts?

    je ne comprende pas.

  8. As you lead foot steps into the store all you hear is “Can I help you…Can I help you…Can I help you…Can I help you…?” You explain that you are just looking.

    Go to the parts area and you find very few parts and what they have are in the wrong bin. After you decide you can’t find the part you find that there are no sales persons around. And when you do find one he/she has no idea what they are doing.

    As you leave vowing never to come back an employee appears to wish you “Have a good day”. You say to yourself: Yea, sure, you and your store have not made my day.

  9. It sounds like she’s saying “LED lights, capacitors, and DIPsh*ts”.

  10. A really sad video…some executive had a “brainstorm” after attending a cocktail party and tasked a clueless PR or sales team to come up with some ideas to get into the DIY market….too little too late….

  11. The last several times I went to Radio Shack, I walked out without finding what I wanted. And also noticed the increased empty floor space. Sad and disappointing from the RadioShack I remember when I was a kid. About the only thing you can depend on them having is solder (oh, and cell phones, cell phones, cell phones).

  12. Someone should compile a list of actual electronic supply stores for major cities. Tanner’s Electronics in Irving, TX and Circuit Specialists in Mesa, AZ. Radio Shack is so far out of my mind that I never consider it.

  13. I’m going to give them the benefit of the doubt and submit feedback. Anything that makes DIY easier, more mainstream and keeps parts/tools closer to home is something that I want to support.

  14. Uh, if their projects don’t involve capacitors in some form or another, how are they powered? Magic fairy dust? I mean, seriously, how do you smooth out power to the project?

  15. I think the most insulting out of all this is the lack of research. Its great that they are reaching out but its a pretty easy model to copy if you just pay attention.

    What makes adafruit, sparkfun evil mad scientist etc run?
    1. Easy to use hard to find bits via breakout boards and kits.
    2. Knowledgeable staff.
    3. Reasonable prices.

    Want to know what we want in Radioshacks? Everything they make and distribute and nothing less.

  16. Glad I’m not color blind…

  17. First off… check their old catalogs! This is fun to read the awesome stuff available in the 50’s-70’s… even into the 80’s a little.

    http://www.radioshackcatalogs.com/catalog_directory.html

    Personally I’d like to see more OOPS I ran out!- last minute items
    1- more sizes copper clad (only some stores here carry any at all)
    2- better store brand deoxit
    3- 595’s (I think they didn’t have these) and other common IC’s other than 555’s and lm386’s. may some h-bridges? mplexes/dmplexes?
    ok and four…
    4- vacuum tube sockets… bring back the old skool radio shack!

    Radioshack for me is like the corner store – a place to pick up a gallon of milk at midnight.

  18. it was a bad move on your part , to stop selling parts….cellphone selling is a dime a dozen….lets get some uptodate electronic parts in the shack…logic IC’s such as shift registers AKA 74HC595 and 74HC165…some sensors,etc

  19. L.A.W. – A large portion of the smaller independent brick-and-mortar electronics stores seem to sell components from NTE.

    So searching NTE’s distributors list seems to give you the majority of independent stores in a given area.

    http://www.nteinc.com/NET_St_lst/Disty.html

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