Custom Cut Resistor Bandoliers

Through-hole resistors come on tape that we’re now calling bandoliers. Since [Spencer] is selling a boatload of his RC2014 backplane computer kits on Tindie, he’s been chopping up a lot of resistor bandoliers. It’s a boring and monotonous job.

Fortunately, a lot of people have had a bandolier cutting problem over the years, and there are some hobbyist-grade robots that will do this work for you. One of the more popular robots tasked for bandolier cutting is a laser cut robot. However, if you already have a laser cutter, why not just use the laser to cut the bandoliers? It’s brilliant in its simplicity.

[Spencer] spent a little bit of time designing a template to turn his laser cutter into a cutter for through hole resistors. No, he’s not trimming the leads — this is just a device to cut resistors into groups mini bandoliers of a handful of resistors. The tool is made out of plywood, with a smaller top piece held down with magnets to keep the resistors aligned.

The entire template is up on Thingiverse, and it’s great if you need to cut hundreds of resistors to kit dozens of projects. If you’re only doing one or two, scissors will be the way to go, but if you’re cursed with the monotony of trimming hundreds there’s no better way to get things done than to put a robot to work.

16 thoughts on “Custom Cut Resistor Bandoliers

    1. The linked page does show 1346 orders placed in total.
      While not all of the things up for sale are kits with resistor packs, a very quick glance seems that more than a few are.

      1. Assuming three seconds to cut one group of resistors (which seems generous, especially once you get ‘in the groove’) it’s still only going to take about an hour to cut them by hand. Now, I’m not saying this way wasn’t more /fun/, but I’ve noticed people often drastically underestimate the amount they can get done if they just knuckle down and do things by hand. Of course, if he had 10,000 orders then that changes things.

        1. The thing is, you’ll never recoup the time you spend doing it by hand. If you know something is going to happen once, sure, buckle down and get it done. But if there is a fair chance of it being required more often, why not invest a little time to automate the process and make life easier on yourself from then on? After the inintial investment of time, you will benefit every time. More importantly, your whole operation becomes a bit more nimble in regards to sudden changes, like getting a few huge orders and such. When you suddenly need to churn out a pile of these, you can, because you did a little set-up work when you weren’t in a crunch yet. The effect becomes more profound as you automate more.

          Of course, sometimes you just loathe a certain chore, often unreasonably so. If this helps you getting on with it, rather than postponing it until the last minute, the improvement is a lot bigger than just not having to cut a few resistor bandoliers any more.

          1. >”Get a machine you have to fuss over and maintain plus programming time spent and THEN the time to do the run…… while the kids are watching tv?”

            The machine was already available and maintained and programming time is the same one time deal. After that, you can run it while you are watching tv.

    2. This totally looks like something I’d do, given a) a task that’s just repetitive enough that I’d keep losing count, but not repetitive enough to call for the proper tool. and b) a laser cutter that’s new enough that I’m still looking for an excuse to cut anything, but old enough that my girlfriend is getting tired of the piles of randomly massacred plywood.

      “Worth it” is totally related to how new and fun the toy is.

  1. It looks like he’s cutting apart individual resistors. Why not simply grab the two tapes and pull them off all the resistors? For cutting 2+ groups, make a jig for use with a paper cutter. It’d be faster.

  2. I wonder if [Spencer] knows that there are tools that will not only cut the leads (and therefore take the bandoliers off without too much of a mess) but also bend them?

    Google for “Resistor Cutter” and you’ll find many different variations, from handheld models to fully automated ones that can count the number of resistors and stop after a given count.

  3. This totally seems like the hard way. A paper guillotine with a stop on it would be so much faster and easier.

    Or get someone in Shenzhen to prepackage them; there are plenty of suppliers with robots that will sell you 2000 vacuum-sealed packages of N resistors.

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