Electronic Components

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This page gives a quick overview of components used when creating or modifying electric circuits.


A capacitor is an electric circuit element used to store charge temporarily, consisting in general of two metallic plates separated and insulated from each other by a dielectric.

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A diode is an electronic device that allows current flow only one way, (polar)

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Light Emitting Diode

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A fuse is a safety device that protects an electric circuit from excessive current, consisting of or containing a metal element that melts when current exceeds a specific amperage, thereby opening the circuit(rendering the fuse useless after being blown)

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Integrated Circuits

Integrated circuits, also known as ICs, microchips, or simply chips, are miniaturized electronic circuits (consisting mainly of semiconductor devices, as well as passive components) which have been manufactured in the surface of a thin substrate of semiconductor material.

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A relay is an electrical switch that opens and closes under control of another electrical circuit.

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A resistor is a device used to control current in an electric circuit by providing resistance. (holds current back, like a knot in a water hose lowers the pressure that the water sprays out.)


A solenoid is a loop of wire, often wrapped around a metallic core, which produces a magnetic field when an electrical current is passed through it.

These devices are used to produce switchable movement. Pinball machines use solenoids extensively.

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A transistor is a solid state semiconductor device which can be used for amplification, switching, voltage stabilization, signal modulation and many other functions.

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Wire is the glue that connects the electrical components together. Wire may be stranded or solid and insulated or uninsulated. Stranded wire is more flexible then solid wire. Wire comes in gauges which determine its size. The larger the number the smaller the wire. 18 to 22 gauge are commonly used in arcade cabinets. 14 and 16 gauge may be used to connect power carrying circuits.

See Also