$100 free from your favorite hobby supplier!

We were wary at first when the email came in with the headline “SparkFun is having a free day” and figured surly this is in relation to recent events? But no, after 7 years of loyal customers, SparkFun is simply giving back to the community.

It’s interesting to think that without their services, we wouldn’t have some of the amazing hacks we introduce every day. Such as the DIY mood lamp, or Cell phone alt-variometer, or Arduino iPod remote control. And their free day will allow some disadvantaged hackers the ability to finally flex that muscle sitting between their shoulders. What do you plan to make?

Mark your calendars folks, On January the 7th 2010 SparkFun is giving every household a $100 (until they reach $100k), if that’s not an incentive to wake up early, what is?

As a side note, do you think we’ve had enough posts about SparkFun lately?

[Thanks Diego]

88 thoughts on “$100 free from your favorite hobby supplier!

  1. great now that its posted here instead of reaching the limit in 5 min the limit will be hit towards teh end of teh day… if at all… *sees the smoke from server meltdown all the way on the east coast…)

  2. Too bad I don’t have anything similar to SparkFun in my country. All we have is local suppliers who are worthless for anything less common than LEDs, and small online shops which charge more for shipping than foreign shops :(

  3. I’d like it more if they said they would randomly choose 100-1000 people after they made a purchase. This could be a refund, a store credit or whatever.

    This way you would only buy what you really need and wouldn’t encourage abusing the promotion.

    @IceBrain, where do you live?

  4. What should i get,i would really like to start using a ardunio, so i can use it for different kind of stuff.
    So i was thinking about the Arduino Duemilanove, is there anything i need more than just the arduino, to do some basic stuff?

    Besy Regards

  5. “We were wary at first when the email came in with the headline”

    At first I didn’t quite believe it myself ;)

    Diego

  6. “It’s interesting to think that without their services, we wouldn’t have some of the amazing hacks we introduce every day”

    So haven’t they already “given back”? (Whatever that means… in the past I’ve sent them money and they’ve sent me electronics; I always thought it was a fair exchange. They don’t need to “give back” to me and I don’t need to “give back” to them.)

    Hey, I love free stuff as much as the next guy. But it’s weird that SparkFun would think they have some moral obligation to do this.

  7. Wow how great!
    However, does this mean that order no. 1001 will be charged for the full amount? It’s kind of a lottery in that case :)

  8. Bob-

    No one said anything about a “moral obligation.” It’s just their way of saying “thanks” to their customers.

    Some people will complain about anything.

  9. @Zeecue: Check out sparkfun’s Beginner’s Electronics Kit, lots of great goodies in there.

    Sparkfun’s website already seems to be getting hit. I’m sure the news is bound to spread even more and really screw over my chances of getting at some of that bread. Hopefully not every single person does a full $100 order…

  10. It’s also a great form marketing.
    McDonald’s did it with coffee, Harvey’s with hanburgers, etc.
    It’s $100 worth of stuff, but that’s not what it’s costing them. It’s probably marked up 100%, so this campaign is probably costing them 50 grand. That’s pretty cheap as far as marketing goes. They’ll have to give 1000 people stuff…but they’re going to have hundreds of thousands of people trying to get it. It’s a really great idea.

  11. Wow is this the first electronics company to give away that amount of goods? I have never heard of such a thing before. But as Fallen mentioned it is inexpensive as far as a big marketing campaign goes.

    Good luck to all!

  12. @Alan Parekh How about all the free samples many companies give away :) ? Sparkfun products are a bit overpriced already so yeah, it will cost them much less than $100 per customer.

  13. International orders are accepted for sure. You still pay shipping.

    Also, the post on the SparkFun site mentions they are upgrading the servers in December. Hopefully they can take the heat!

  14. hmm, $100,000 / $100 is 10,000 people.

    Given how much press this is getting, I expect SparkFun to be out $100,000 in free stuff in about 5 minutes..

    If this gets Slashdotted… kiss your chance to get in on this goodbye, they don’t have a big enough pipe to fit the internet into. :(

  15. great now that the cat is out of the bag there is going to be no chance of getting it, i was hoping this would stay quite and i could score some cool crap :_( i wonder if you can submit orders and if your not one of the free ones cancel? if so i might still try

  16. If anyone read the website properly they would see that it states that:

    You will see whether or not your order qualifies for a credit in the checkout process.

    So it is not like the lottery, you will know if you will get it free before you pay for it…

    Mowcius

  17. hey people, if you can afford to buy the stuff (i.e. are not a penniless student or something), don’t take the chance away from someone who can’t afford it. this is like the free samples from IC manufacturers, don’t do it just to get free stuff.

  18. Nice, I’ve been looking for an excuse to get back into the home-brew electronics world and this is perfect!

    Also great marketing for Sparkfun, never followed a link to them until it had the word “FREE” attached, and now I’m kinda hooked.

  19. @nave.notnilc

    Students aren’t penniless, they can afford Uni, and probably have better prospects of a good job.

    And don’t think Manufacturers aim free samples at isolated hobbyists either, but hope to promote larger orders.

    If you can use it, why not apply? Whether something is affordable depends on how much it’s neeeded; everyone still has to work to pay for it.

  20. @CH:
    There’s free public higher education in many countries, and even in places like the US there’s students that -are- penniless and manage to get a decent higher education through loans (which are to be paid -after- their education is done and once they get the better jobs you mention) or simply scholarships/grants. And, in any case, after paying a decent university’s tuition, one is probably left penniless.

  21. @pppd: I live in Portugal (Europe, near Spain). It’s not the desert around here, but I find it hard and costly to get many less common components.

  22. AWESOME! FREE STUFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I hope no one tries to bring down there shiny new servers with a DOS attack before it starts…

  23. I’m planning on ordering their beginners set so I can get into building stuff. Thanks a lot Hackaday/Sparkfun ! You guys rock !

  24. @Cheerful Phil,
    That’s the kind of nonconstructive activity that makes these give-aways useless. Get items YOU plan using. To try to make a buck here makes no sense. If SparkFun really has nothing you want/need on their site, why do you even visit this website?

  25. blue laser because it is america and I can. Maybe I’m donating the money to feed starving gay baby whales to Ethiopians. Maybe I’m buying another furby just to do it. Maybe I’ll have a contest to see who can guess what’s in the box that I bought with the box from sparkfun that probably just contains a record player spooling off cassette tape to trail out of my car window or a crossbow that shoots alligators with a flashlight tied to it lol. Whoever guesses what it is wins all of the money i made on that box. I guess I will need two sparkfun boxes then. One for the contest and one for myself for operating costs of said contest. I should try for more is the moral of the story?

  26. @Cheerful Phil
    I agree with Blue Laser and add that you’re a scrooge. Seriously, it’s obvious that this give-away is aimed at encouraging people who are just getting into electronics to get a real project or two together.
    If you have nothing better to do with a great opportunity than steal it from someone else to rip off some poor fool, I pity you.

    Sheesh….Who knew scrooge read Hackaday.

  27. Oh, and I guessed the moral of your story too!
    ..
    The only thing you can count on more than people trying to do something nice once in a while is some asshat trying to take advantage of the system.

  28. This is all kinds of awesome :) Too bad for me though I don’t have the extra money I’d need to throw in a hot-air rework station by January.

    Of course their stations also have the problem that they’re 110V not 220V so I’d need a converter to run them here.

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