Tales from the Underground

Turns out dirt has a lot more to say then we ever imagined. Geologists have been telling us this for eons. Farmers too. Or any kid who likes running toy trucks through the mud, which brings us to Antonio Guzman. We’re not sure if Antonio was one of those kids, but he likes dirt. He’s … Read more

Shine a Little Light on That!

It seemed like such an easy thing to fix. The bulb on Bill Lewis’s flashlight needed replacement. A lot of people would probably just toss the flashlight in the trash and get another. You can pick up a new one pretty cheap. But Bill wasn’t ready to do that just yet. “The flashlight is nothing … Read more

Big Sounds from Small Pieces at Bargain Prices

Everyone is familiar with that old saying: bigger bang for your buck. And Jason Sunderland is a man who practices that mantra by using legacy electronics at bargain prices to bring big sounds to his guitar. Sunderland is an electrician by trade who is turning his skills and hunger for knowledge into practical applications. Using … Read more

The Mouse that Roared

It’s just an ordinary mouse. They’re everywhere — the pantry, the garage, or the warehouse — and yes, even at ObtainSurplus. You see droppings first, or maybe a blur of fur skittering into a crack so small that physics seems to deny passage to anything but a dust mite. Most of us would pull out … Read more

“Used is great for me -“

An AVO Surge Tester with all the bells and whistles In a “throw-away” society where we often think the newest is the best, Matthew Goettemoeller stands tall. He likes used — and not just because it’s cheaper. Case in point: a surge tester. Specifically an AVO Multi-Amp DS-13SA Surger Premiere. That’s the long name for … Read more

5,214 Miles & Seven Days

Somewhere in the cargo hold of a UPS jet in mid-April is a small but very important package of surplus industrial equipment with a five-figure price tag. It has a long journey from its starting place in Boise, Idaho to a small village — Saint-Paul-Lès Dax — in the south of France. That’s a distance … Read more

The Gauge and Snoopy

NASA Surplus Property

It’s not often one shares their thoughts about an industrial gauge and a cartoon dog in the same sentence, but this one is too much to pass up. This is about Zachary “Zac” Fisher, a fascination with anything NASA, a cartoon dog, and an industrial gauge. It starts with this instrument: Idaho Surplus Auctions https://idahosurplusauctions.com/ … Read more

Vidal Sassoon Goes Industrial?

It’s a sure bet that Mr. Sassoon didn’t have anything but styling in mind when he began selling hair dryers decades ago. He passed away several years back, but he would probably appreciate Obtainium’s innovation and sense of creativity. Credit goes to this guy—Dan Matthews. Dan came up with a quick, efficient way to test … Read more

When Legacy is Way Cool

When this piece of legacy electronics first showed up at the Obtainium warehouse thoughts drifted back to my old radio days—the big boards with dials (attenuators) and meters that measured levels to make sure your voice wasn’t over-modulating, but a closer look put an end to my nostalgia. It was something equally or perhaps more … Read more

Little Things Mean a Lot

Close your eyes and think INDUSTRY. Can you see it now? That big smoke stack over there—massive machines, warehouses surrounded by railroad tracks. We’re talking big boy stuff. Dirty faces and overalls. Alright, alright, that’s a little old because things have changed. Just ask this woman. This is Ginny Root. She is the master and … Read more