An unexpected discovery

Bazzer

Setting the controls for the heart of the sun.
My OCD got the better of me today and fed up with child 2's car being grubby inside and out, I gave it a thorough clean.
Among the detritus was her old black box, but rather than just binning it, I split it open to remove the battery, a) to prevent it going to landfill, and b) I thought I could repurpose for some garden lights.
Anyway, the face of the circuit board was as one might expect:
CVGEKpL.jpg

But the reverse side of the board had some unexpected text:
S3PNz4j.jpg
 

Sharky

Guru
Location
Kent
It's a clue, you need to follow it to find the hidden treasure.
 
OP
Bazzer

Bazzer

Setting the controls for the heart of the sun.
Interesting. Hasten the demise of the Maldives by burning tons of fossil fuel to visit them
But the message was hardly prominent and the box had to be persuaded open with a old chisel and a Birmingham screwdriver.
I suspect a lot of people, like daughter 2, if she had cleaned her car, would have just binned the old black box. It was a combination of me not wanting to send a battery to landfill and potentially having a use for the battery, (which as a bonus was a Li-Po battery). - The insurance company didn't want it back, which surprised me at the time. And whilst there are no doubt hundreds of these particular boxes issued, I would be surprised if more than a small percentage were disposed of responsibly.
Even if someone had taken the trouble to put it in electrical recycling, I doubt those whose job is stripping the useful components, would be bothered to look closely at the circuit board.
 

Oldhippy

Veteran
Is a modern version of writing a message on the plaster wall before wallpaper goes up to let someone know you lived there. 😁 Although, on a serious note the Maldives is in trouble from an environment perspective.
 
OP
Bazzer

Bazzer

Setting the controls for the heart of the sun.
Is a modern version of writing a message on the plaster wall before wallpaper goes up to let someone know you lived there. 😁 Although, on a serious note the Maldives is in trouble from an environment perspective.
I did wonder about that. The circuit board designer's version of "I woz here" and provided the units worked, no one would know unless you were a bit anal about the battery and/or disposal.

In a similar vein, I recall some years ago hearing on the radio about a plumber whose repair work principally involved hotels and he used to leave a small plastic duck behind the fascia covering the pipework.

That's pretty bad. I'd have sent it to them anyway.

My internet banking card reader started playing up. Replacing the batteries didn't fix it so I've ordered a new one. They provide you with a freepost address to send your old one to.


My first thought too.
That was my thought too, but if it had been sent back, chances are they would bin it anyway, as IIRC, the box came from a third party.
 

palinurus

Velo, boulot, dodo
Location
Watford
Even if someone had taken the trouble to put it in electrical recycling, I doubt those whose job is stripping the useful components, would be bothered to look closely at the circuit board.
I don't think this job exists. The whole lot is ground up and metals are extracted from the resulting stuff. It's unlikely components are de-soldered and re-used except in unusual circumstances (applications where designs need to last many, many years for example- obsolete components may be then be harvested from failed boards)
 
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palinurus

Velo, boulot, dodo
Location
Watford
It's not unusual for designers to add messages on circuit designs- although this appears to have been made by a subcontractor so that is pretty
unusual (unless perhaps the subcon is putting the PCBs in the boxes too so the customer doesn't see them)

Oddly there's a whole Reddit thread about this particular example.
 
Last edited:

SpokeyDokey

64 and some.
My OCD got the better of me today and fed up with child 2's car being grubby inside and out, I gave it a thorough clean.
Among the detritus was her old black box, but rather than just binning it, I split it open to remove the battery, a) to prevent it going to landfill, and b) I thought I could repurpose for some garden lights.
Anyway, the face of the circuit board was as one might expect:
View attachment 593693
But the reverse side of the board had some unexpected text:
View attachment 593694
Brilliant. :laugh:
 
OP
Bazzer

Bazzer

Setting the controls for the heart of the sun.
It's not unusual for designers to add messages on circuit designs- although this appears to have been made by a subcontractor so that is pretty
unusual (unless perhaps the subcon is putting the PCBs in the boxes too so the customer doesn't see them)

Oddly there's a whole Reddit thread about this particular example.
Interesting. Whoever it is has been doing it for a while, or at least 2 batches, with the Reddit thread showing a board with 2017 copyright, but mine showing 2018.
 
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