For most of us, vacuum tubes haven’t appeared in any of our schematics or BOMs in — well, ever. Once mass-manufacturing made reliable transistors cheap enough for hobbyists, vacuum tubes became pretty passe, and it wasn’t long before the once mighty US tube industry was decimated, leaving the few remaining tube enthusiasts to ferret out caches of old stock, or even seek new tubes from overseas manufacturers.
However, all that may change if [Charles Whitener] succeeds in reshoring at least part of the US vacuum tube manufacturing base. He seems to have made a good start, having purchased the Western Electric brand from AT&T and some of its remaining vacuum tube manufacturing equipment back in 1995. Since then, he has been on a talent hunt, locating as many people as possible who have experience in the tube business to help him gear back up. Continue reading “Reshoring Vacuum Tube Manufacturing, One Tube At A Time”