Introduction: Resistor Filing and Storage System

I rebuild/refurbish tube radios and amps and build the occasional DIY project so I'm always needing various resistor values.  I finally got tired of having to go to Radio Shack or place an order online every time I got a new radio.  So, I bought a resistor kit.  I found one on Ebay that included 50 values of 1 watt resistors that will cover most of my needs.  When combined with my original stock of resistors I now have 100-125 values of resistors to store and keep track of.

No more of this dumping them all in the bottom of a draw and searching for the needle in the haystack.  I needed a system for storing my resistors by value so that I can get them instantly.  What I came up with works very well for me and should work for you.

Step 1: The Parts

1 or 2 boxes of plastic zip lock SNACK bags.  You'll need one bag per resistor size.  Be sure to get the snack bag size.  They are perfect for this use.  About $1 at the $1 store.

Some card stock cut to fit inside the bags

Printed labels or sharp pointed marker

A box or container just slightly wider than the bags.  I found that Michael's and other crafts stores carry a nice photo storage box that's just the right size.  I got one for $3 on sale so I bought two.

Step 2: Divide Your Resistors

My resistor kit came shipped in separate bags marked with the value.  But I did a quick test with my ohm meter to double check and did find one pack mislabeled.  Separate your resistors by value so you know what you have and start with the lowest value.

Step 3: Bagging

On one of the cards write the value of the resistor.  I found some labels that have the value and the color code for standard resistors that I also put on the card.  In the process of putting together this system I've almost memorized the color code with out even trying.

Put the card and the resistors in the bag and close it.  Be sure to press out all of the air first, they will store better that way.

Just do this over and over until you have all of your resistors bagged and filed. 

If your box is too long fill the back with another box or something so that your resistors are snug and won't move around and get out of order.

Step 4: Finally

This should make your projects go a little smoother since you won't have to spend so much time looking for parts.  When you notice that you are running short on a value make a note of it and when you are low on a couple order them so you don't run out.

Hope you get a little more free time with  my project.

Comments

author
gisecke (author)2014-08-18

Thank you for the ideia.

I will made this. It's very usefull.

I have a lot of resistors and capacitors

author
spaceraver (author)2013-04-28

Got any good ideas when one has several thousands of resistors and need it crated?

author
dZed (author)2013-04-04

Where did you get your resistor value/color code labels? I did some Googling and found a guy who has some PDFs up, but it seems yours are stickers?

Great idea. Will be implementing this with my pile this weekend.

author
Re-design (author)dZed2013-04-05

Mine aren't stickers. You could print them on labels if you wanted to. I printed mine on plain paper and then glued them to the card stock liner.

author
womorris (author)2013-04-04

This is a great way to sort and file these. I was looking at separate drawers for each value or several values, but this seems so much better and easier.

Definite favorite idea. Looks like I need to order a resistor kit now.

author
DeanAshby (author)2013-01-29

This is great not only for your resistors, but also for my sewing accessories. I have needles in one zip lock bag, and threads in another. Such a great storage idea and you can rest assured that your little items do not get lost and are well organized. My husband uses a similar storage system for his screws, bolts and other garage tools.

author
pecker (author)2012-08-17

Spookily enough, I came up with the same solution for storing resistors

For larger components, I made some 5"x3"x0.5" boxes from 6"x4" index cards. I used the Crafter's Companion Multiboard to mark out the folding creases, although it would be simple enough to make up a jig to make the creases.

author
Re-design (author)pecker2012-08-17

Well, it's not rocket science. When there's a need we tend to design an answer for it don't we?

author
terry1769 (author)2012-08-16

Nice solution. Mine is done the same way but with envelopes because that's the way Dad set it up a few decades ago. :)

author
Re-design (author)terry17692012-08-16

He probably used what he had available. I used the clear bags 'cause I like to see what is inside without opening up. I've seen church offering envelopes used. The main idea is to just get them organized. There isn't a bigger time waster the just piling resistors in a coffee can etc., then digging thru them to find what you need. I've seen it a hundred times at other friends workshops and it makes me shake my head every time.