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Technology gap

Despite the UK being *cough* one of the most advanced nations on this planet I have spent the last few days looking at some of the tools that are available here. It really is pitiful that tools we want, such as Geiger Counters, advanced Radios, etc. just can’t be bought here any longer. Sure you can buy them from abroad but then the Stasi jump on them and steal even more of your money for the priv of buying abroad. Custom taxes must be a growth area for the Mafia tax leeches.

I was wondering why we have such a gap in the UK. I understand why we have a manufacturing gap but to not have shops with many of these items in in puzzling. Is it because we really are the perfect socialist society, like France, a subservient people letting steam out with riots every year unless we get our circuses? I hope not as that is really near the end.

The issue with this is that when it all collapses as all socialist states do then we will find that nowhere in the UK will we have the capability of manufacturing electronic components. Not even the basic items such as transistors, LEDs or capacitors so we can only dream of all the advanced stuff like integrated circuits (IC) and high density electronics. Although we had the more advanced stuff such as integrated circuits in the 70s its loss is less of an issue compared to the lack of the basics like transistors.

Despite the advances over the last 60 years electronics has mainly advanced to where we can put more and more on a single chip. The size halving every few years following Moore’s revised Law. He predicted the number of transistors on an IC would double every year, it was revised to every two years and this has proven true. That is why we have so much digital equipment and microprocessors in everything from birthday cards up.

We really could do with basic electronics as so much can be done with them and we need them when we are looking at setting up a society. For a start communications relies on them and we really should make sure we can repair our comms kit. The computers though we are just not going to be able to repair. Spares only and when they are gone they are really gone.

So, I’m adding to my lists some basic electronics equipment, books and components. I have a lot of electronics equipment from the 70s such as an oscilloscope, power supplies, signal generators, soldering gear and several boxes of transistors, resistors and capacitors already. It’s been a very long time since I built my own electronic items but I remember how to solder and build the breadboards. I doubt if I could design any electronic circuits though but luckily there are plenty of old books about.

Now for most of us prepping this is a step too far. We won’t gain much from this, if anything, and it will take resources, money, time and space away from items you are almost certain to need. So unless you have everything else you need and know the basics in the electronics world then I wouldn’t bother trying to put anything aside. This is specialist stuff for what will become a very niche area after an event. Long after an event when our new society expands it will become a growth area and those that are in it will do well.

14 comments to Technology gap

  • prepper1

    Do we realy want to go the same way again?blindly repeating history again? Reinventing the same old electronics and problems. Or do we take the initiative and dispose of the more advanced aspects of our current lives and turn back the clocks to a more simpler more fulfiling agrigrarian age.

    • bigpaul

      i do so agree with you Prepper 1, lets get back to a simpler agricultural life, people are so unfit these days with all this technology….maybe thats why we have an obesity problem? any more and people will lose the use of their legs…why have legs when you can do it all from a chair??

  • Paul

    I trained over 40 youngsters in the 80’s to repair computers, TV’s, audio-visual systems, Radio gear (CB, PMR, Ham, & cellular) and yet over 3/4 have given up as the demand for repair engineers has gone.
    Today’s trend is to ignore the old skills. It’s the same in every industry in the UK. A HUGE mistake.
    Personally I can’t wait for the predicted world knock out EMP due in December.
    Us oldies are going to have a right chuckle as we run about in our old non cpu based cars and natter away on our ancient valve transceivers.

  • iaaems

    As someone who grew up with valves and transformers and wires everywhere todays kit is remarkable. A reason for the lack of skills is probably due to the reliability of the current products coupled with their miniturisation it would be very difficult for the average tech person to work on them anyway. So when it goes wrong, chuck it out. That’s progress I suppose.
    As for the predicted event later this year possibly the beginning of next or sometime near thereafter I, of course, hope it does not happen. Bearing in mind that the prediction came from a society that no longer exists in a language no one has ever heard spoken and comprised mainly in heirogliphics, which leave a lot to the imagination, it might just be that another way of looking at this is that human society the world over starts on an irreversible decline with all the attendant muck and bullets. Deep joy – be prepared.

  • Skean Dhude


    No we don’t. We should ensure that every socialist is drowned at birth for a start and that we have a constitution that limits power, the ability to borrow, etc.

    Turning back time may sound good but we need to thrive as a species. After all our home will be destroyed in about 4 billion years.


    I’m not talking about that far back. Electronic components are really cheap. For those that have the skills it is a mad scientist scenario and one for the future.


    They are fairly reliable and the way they are made means that users just don’t have the tools to fix them. The board densities are too high. They just swap out boards. OK when it is a computer but a pain when it is a boiler that doesn’t need 2,654 expensive boards.

  • bigpaul

    trouble is we are now a “throw away” society, if it dosent work any more, dont bother getting it repaired, throw it away and buy a new one!

  • Northern Raider

    We dont ” Do” new technology on a small scale any more and the reason is very simple, You come up with a concept or program, you borrow money to develop cos theres no grants, the idea proves sound so you think ” Right I’ll set up a limited company and try and start making fuffle valves with a waffle lever intergrated into the design. You fill out the required registration to start a company and the UK governments first response will be to send you a bill for National Insurance Type 2 & 4. Whats the point in trying when our government only sees you are a source to be taxed the second you raise your head above the parapet.

  • Paul

    This article couldn’t have come at a better time to cite an example.
    My friend’s boiler died recently. So he calls out an ‘engineer’ (trained up by a VERY well known boiler manufacturer) yet was told that his 15 year old boiler was too old to find spares for and needed to be changed.

    Was there any fault finding?
    He took the top off, wrote down the control board model and typed it into a laptop. Spares not listed, conclusion “SCRAP IT”. Today’s engineering to a tee.

    The fault? A burnt out knackered relay. 15 mins and a multimeter to trace the fault.
    Replacement cost £3.75 plus p&p and an hour to change.
    SD is right about components though. They are cheap, they are accessible.

    The problem is the ability, the skill if you like, has been dumbed down to board level swop outs by manufacturers and UK industry in general. Yes the technology is advanced yet can the modern engineers actually “engineer” now?

    Take your standard car? Basic engine faults mainly call for the ‘technician’ to plug in a PC.
    Technology too advanced to fix on the roadside and engineers not capable of repairing it anyway.
    The whole fuel management, ECU, emissions control bit forced onto the end user but political decisions forced by powerful looney environmental lobbyists and big business.

    Nowadays even modern hams aren’t as knowledgeable as their predecessors were. Now it’s all about a bit of theory, a bit of practical operating, the precious license, and a credit card to buy something with. When it all goes wrong?
    The electronics are too compact or PIC/CPU based to allow you to play with. Today you’ll go out and buy a replacement.
    Tomorrow, SHTF and there aren’t any shops? What then?

    I agree with SD that buying basic bits and pieces could help you but you’ll need to get the basic knowledge first.
    And that’s the kicker. Where from and from who?

  • Skvez

    The “replace rather than repair” society has been primarily driven by the “sue society”. It I repair it and it breaks (and as a result you loose a lot of revenue) you sue me, if I replace it and it breaks (and as a result you loose a lot of revenue) you sue the manufacturer of the replacement part.
    I can’t afford the consequential liability insurance to repair stuff.

    • Paul

      Never had that happen to me Skvez yet I’ve worked on all manner of electronic stuff over 40 years including the dreaded white goods.
      Nearest I got to a major upset was when a plonker of a customer refilled his £3200 A0 inkjet plotter with Indian Ink and tried to claim on the manufacturers guarantee.
      That’s the value of having custom invoicing systems which contain a disclaimer which the client has to sign BEFORE you start work. Also the only time I ever thanked a solicitor who had suggested it!

  • So Very Doomed

    Perhaps a return to thermionics beckons?

  • I can see why returning to a simpler life would appeal, but back when life was simple in this country we didn’t have over 70 million people to feed and water. I doubt with the resources we have we would cope in a complete breakdown.

    Those with a knowledge of electronics, and the ability to work with/build and restore such kit will I think be in great demand.

    I have no such knowledge, but wish I did, any skill will be useful at some point n the future.

    Take care

  • prepper1

    It’s a great idea being skilled or even semi skilled in a lot of things. I repair my own cars, I’m currently retrofitting an old 16 foot boat trailer into a bug out trailer. I can do basic electronics but i’m severely restricted by space or the lack of.
    I’ve got a half size allotment off the local council and have just had a practice plant this year as I only got it in late june but i’ll hammer it next year for food production hopefully but it’s good practice none the less as I’m trying to grow seed plants too so I have stocks of my own seed available.
    I can repair the older electronics but this miodern stuff with micro resistors is pretty much beyond my sausage fingers, to to small for me. I’d like to be a jack of most trades so at least I can turn my hand to mostly anything, then hopefully if I cant manage by mywself or we get back to 1930 depression type times I’ll have transferable skills to trade for money, food or goods.

  • ranger

    prepper1 makes a good point. transferrable skills that can be traded would be valuable in a post shtf world.even in a pretty bad but non shtf event(greece, spain today),these types of skill could/would make life more bearable

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