An Interview with Woolf Kanter of All Electronics
by Marvin Mallon
If you are looking for a wide variety
of hobby and experimenter supplies,
you just might want to do business
with All Electronics Corp. This small,
family owned and operated establishment is located in Van Nuys, CA and
has been operating for nearly 15 years
at their present location. Two brothers,
Alan and Woolf Kanter, supervise a
team of 30 employees who boast of fast
turn-around times for all orders placed
by mail, fax, or online. Their 18,000
square foot facility handles a lot of walk-in trade, as well as serving as headquarters for all of their mail order business.
Additionally, they own a 15,000 sq ft
warehouse in downtown Los Angeles.
Alan — the older of the two by
one year — is an ex-musician who still
surfs at age 60. Woolf’s pastime
activities run to cooking and physical
fitness. He attended Cal State
Hayward, a northern California
state-run college where he studied
computer science back in the ‘70s.
Their father started the business in
1967 selling surplus goods out of a
Alan (left) and Woolf Kanter (right),
partners at All Electronics Corp.
104 March 2007
warehouse in Los Angeles. When Alan
decided that the musician’s life might
not be for him, he joined his father
working part time. Soon after, Woolf
gave up his job driving a taxi in San
Francisco and went to work with his
father and brother in the business.
Together, they began a mail order business in the early ‘80s and have teamed
up to run it successfully ever since.
The advent of the Internet allowed
them to expand their operation considerably and they presently serve more
than 45,000 customers. The online
portion of their sales accounts for
nearly 80 percent of their transactions.
Power supplies, CCD image
sensors, and mini-gearhead motors are
only a small representation of the numerous electronic items available from them.
As their website at www.allelectronics.
com indicates, the extensive list of
available devices runs alphabetically
from AC Line cords to Wiring Nuts.
When asked about the diversity
of inventory, Woolf replied, “We sell
loads of small DC motors, LEDs, and
LCD displays. We have a wide variety
of electronic parts and supplies, some
very unique items. We do not specialize in any particular item but have a
wide variety of electronic parts.”
It’s not an exaggeration when he
says that they offer many unique items.
To quote one entry on their website of a
Laser Parking Device with Motion
Sensor, “A peculiar, yet oddly practical
device to take the guesswork out of
parking your vehicle in the garage. Some
people do this the old fashioned way
with a tennis ball hanging on a rope. The
adjustable laser pointer mounted on the
wall or ceiling of the garage is activated
when the car enters the garage. The laser
beam, set to project a point of light on
the car’s dashboard or hood, lets you
know when the car is where you want it.
The laser shuts off automatically after a
short time.” You’ve just got to have one
of those, right?
Woolf goes on to say, “We add
dozens of new parts (some of them
industrial surplus) every week. We
publish a mail order catalog ( 96 pages)
every eight weeks and update our
website daily.” The catalog he
describes is also available in PDF
format and can be downloaded
directly from their website. Of course,
you’ll need to install Acrobat Reader in
order to print it out, but you’re sure to
use half a cartridge of ink doing so.
Best to fill out the free order form and
wait for snail mail to drop off your copy.
While many distributors around
the country offer a host of competitive
devices, you might consider putting
All Electronics high on your list of
vendors to do business with. Their
four decades of serving both the
hobbyist and serious experimenter
speaks well of their reliability. NV
CONTACT ALL ELECTRONICS
14928 Oxnard St.
Van Nuys, CA 91411
A toll-free number for sales is 800-826-
5432. Orders can be taken online at