One for the Boys (or the Girls!)

When I started in this hobby when I was around 7, it was batteries and old car bulbs nicked from my Dad's shed, with wires held on the terminals with sellotape, that was to give me my first taste of electronics, well before I  even started making crystal sets. That is all what is needed,just a little encouragement to spark enthusiasm in our hobby, little did I know then I would have held a job in the industry and have an Amateur Radio licence to my name and I would be writing about it today.

So I was in my local discount store the other day, something caught the corner of my eye, an electronic kit. Tronex 50+ Circuit Lab. Made in, you guess right China! But does similar to what I have mentioned above. Yes it resembles the kits that were once produced in late 70's, where wires were held under springs to connect each component into the circuit.

Only having two daughters, one whom is now married, and the other that is now in her latter years of High school, a chance perhaps to encourage her, and get her away from playing with her tablet and computer during the long hours of these dark nights. So I decided to buy one for her Christmas stocking. My wife said you only bought it so you can play with it didn't you? I said no, this is a good educational tool and can be used to encourage, especially with her having to do a science at school.

Not hopeful she will be another Ham in the future, but you never know where it will lead? For overseas readers of my blog I notice there are Tronex kits on ebay of similar content.

I will return to this when she decides to investigate and play, further info here:

Steve, G1KQH, is a regular contributor to and writes from England. Contact him at [email protected].

3 Responses to “One for the Boys (or the Girls!)”

  • Fred Springer VE3KYD:

    As a retired Science Teacher and School Principal (Head Master), I have to agree with you 100%. You never know who or how you will affect the learning of your children or anyone else for that matter.

  • Boots VK3DZ:

    My Dad – a fitter & turner by trade – gave me a Philips EE20 electronics kit for my sixth birthday. Together we learnt about resistors, colour codes, polyester capacitors & ferroxcube aerial coils. Three germanium transistors (AF117 & AC128 from memory) and an OA91 diode. Or did the diode come later?

    Listening to amateurs on 160m AM with a radio made with that kit set me on a path to amateur radio & a career in broadcasting engineering.

  • Zal-----VU2DK:

    Great learning process–in the 1950s, my dad the original VU2BK who was serving in the army Signal Corps, used to get me a couple of old wireless set dry batteries & some bulbs & it was fun hooking them up or even pulling sparks by shorting out the batteries !!!!
    Later my birthday present was always flexible electrical wire—switches–torch bulbs.
    I remember in 1957 or so, Raytheon came out with one of its 1st. transistors, the famous general purpose CK722 & this was gifted to me by another ham friend of my dad’s–I did not sleep the whole night–all excited how I would hook it up to my small OA79 diode crystal set ? Now look where we have come in the field of science & electronics or even ham radio for that matter ?

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