Augustin shows off his wares at the Orlando Hamfest.
With so many people selling here, you never know where you’ll happen to meet another Tindarian (especially at an electronics or maker-focused event). A few weeks ago, I displayed some of my creations at Maker Faire in Orlando, Florida. As it just so happened, Agustin Acosta and his wife were showing wares from their Ocala, Florida-based store, Nightfire Electronics. This is an actual brick-and-mortar electronics emporium, complete with components like LEDs, resistors, and transistors, as well as kits designed by Agustin himself.
My first thought upon seeing this was that if I lived closer to this store, I wouldn’t have to keep so many parts on-hand, though it’s still hard to beat having a good supply in your garage. The other benefit of having a store like that nearby would be Agustin himself. He holds a BSEE, has worked with the Army in a variety of roles involving radio transmission, and even has his name on multiple patents. Whether on an official basis—he’s available for consulting—or perhaps to steer you in a different direction if there’s a better way to do something, his in-store presence is certainly a great reason to stop in.
Agustin inspects his display at the Orlando Maker Faire, featuring a wide range of glorious components.
The business has been in operation since October 2000, and the name “Nightfire Electronics” came out of the fact that Agustin and his wife first started out selling ceramics. He was still working full time, so firing these piece was done at night, thus the moniker “Nightfire.” This sounded cool enough to stick around through their transition into selling electronics, thus the unique name. His wife, an ICU RN, works at the store on her days off, while his son is the store’s general manager, making it a true family business. Agustin reports that even with the three of them helping, keeping the store open 6 days a week is a challenge, especially since they do all of their own packaging.
While you might not be able to make the trip to the store, he also sells a wide range of kits on his Tindie storefront, taking up four separate pages. Seeing what was available at the Faire (in snap-closed plastic cases that would be familiar to many), it appears that he generally leaves the discreet electronics like resistors and capacitors as in-store items, while items that are unique to Nightfire are often available online.
As far as his experience selling on Tindie, Agustin notes that keeping the descriptions of his inventory up-to-date and properly described is the biggest challenge of selling on the platform, as is keeping his prices straight between different sales venues. Even so, he’s quick to cite the great community as being one of the benefits of working with Tindie, as well as the general ease of selling and—importantly—collecting money.
He notes that clear descriptions and great pictures are critical to getting sales here, which is certainly good advice for any platform. We wish Agustin and family continued success going forward, both here and through their physical shop!
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