[vcf-midatlantic] Fake 7400-series memory

Dave McGuire mcguire at neurotica.com
Thu Aug 24 12:21:50 EDT 2017

On 08/24/2017 11:16 AM, W2HX via vcf-midatlantic wrote:
> I would think the most logical explanation for this chip was not that
> someone went through the trouble of trying to pass off one chip for
> another, but rather that the manufacturing process simply put the
> wrong label on the chip. That would seem to me way more plausible
> than some kind of intentional subterfuge for a low demand chip in the
> first place.

  That may seem to be more plausible on the surface, but that's not
what's going on.

  As far as selling fake 74LS189s, look at it this way.  Try not to
apply American labor economics to the situation.  There's a market for
74LS189s.  It's a very small one, but it does exist.

  A Chinese businessman comes across a few hundred thousand completely
useless chips, like DTMF generators.  A few searches on completed eBay
listings tells him which 16-pin DIPs sell and which ones don't.  Chip
labeling equipment is easily reconfigured on the fly (think date codes),
so he makes a few hundred "74LS189s" and puts them on eBay.  And a few
hundred of these, a few hundred of those...and of whichever ones sell,
he makes more.

  And while he's putting them on eBay, he's also shopping them around to
companies that perform equipment repairs, to the military parts channels
(through a front), etc.

  Just think of what you could do in business if you had access to a
labor pool that is endless and essentially free, all of the cast-off
equipment that American corporations are liquidating when they shut down
factories, government subsidies, lots of greed, and a complete lack of
scruples.  That's half of the businessmen in China today.

  This is all extensively studied, well-documented, and is not a new
problem.  It is a very large problem in the electronics industry today,
and not just because of occasionally inconveniencing a hobbyist.  We
have fake components getting into military supply chains by the tens of


Dave McGuire, AK4HZ
New Kensington, PA

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