When I order ICs from larger retailers, they are delivered in a plastic housing that prevents the pins from becoming bent during shipping. With a chip included, they look like this:

enter image description here

I would like to buy more of these so that I can store and ship some ICs I have that didn't come with one, however I am having no luck finding any for sale so I must be using the wrong search terms.

I have looked for chip/ic + carrier, housing, packing, storage, etc. but not found anything remotely like this. I've tried the same retailers that sell the chips as well as places like eBay but I can't find anything at all.

What do retailers call these items when they are up for sale?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Check the manufacturer (not the distributor or reseller), either this will be described on the individual IC datasheet or on the main website under packaging materials. \$\endgroup\$
    – MarkU
    Jun 11, 2017 at 7:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't think it is - I'm pretty sure the manufacturer supplies them on reels or trays, and it's the retailer who puts them into these individual housings when small numbers are ordered. I checked a couple of datasheets and they don't mention packaging at all, and chips from different manufacturers arrive in these same carriers so fairly sure it's not the manufacturer supplying them (and if it is they have a common source I'd like to hunt down.) \$\endgroup\$
    – Malvineous
    Jun 11, 2017 at 8:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ Your retailers might not have them listed as items for sale, but I expect they would be happy to sell them to you if you ask them. Then you can come back and tell us what they're known as :) \$\endgroup\$ Jun 11, 2017 at 14:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ I have seen those, but not for decades and decades. I think I got some 7441s in them back when Nixie tubes were still a viable design choice instead of a retro-look. Possibly your distie has a big sack of them from the last millennium and is slowly using them up. \$\endgroup\$ Jun 12, 2017 at 9:16

3 Answers 3


I would Like to answer your question with an alternative image which would solve your problem.

enter image description here

These are called IC tubes/ Anti-static tubes for Dual In-line Package (DIP) ICs. This is actually the handy alternative for shipment or storage of DIP ICs without causing damage to pins such as bending or breaking. You can find it on amazon or some other e-commercial sites in your country depending on their availability. Here's the one link from amazon https://www.amazon.com/MULTICOMP-030-0012-TUBE-0-6-280MM/dp/B011O94IEE#feature-bullets-btf

I used these in my labs. We had the bulk of OPAMP (741), 555 timer ICs for many participants in a workshop. These tubes were very handy to deal with.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I have a few of these and they are great for storing multiple chips, but I find them less convenient for single chips. The last one I tried to cut to size with a knife shattered along its length making it unusable - how are you meant to cut them? And how do you seal the ends afterwards? Sticky tape sticks to the chip so it's a pain getting the chip out again, stuffing paper in the ends falls out during shipping, the only things that work are the rubber stoppers you sometimes get from suppliers, but I'm not sure how easy they are to find either? \$\endgroup\$
    – Malvineous
    Jun 11, 2017 at 8:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ You would have to manually drill a hole with hot rod or something after properly measured cutting and then use some thread or screw to lock it down to avoid falling.... I guess thread would be easy to tie and un-tie. \$\endgroup\$ Jun 11, 2017 at 9:01
  • 4
    \$\begingroup\$ For rubber stoppers ("Rail Tube Stops") try jameco.com Part no.: 29583 / ITW ECPS / ITW Thielex no.: #E-V801118-01. jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/… \$\endgroup\$
    – MarkU
    Jun 11, 2017 at 9:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ I remember these when RAM came in 64kbit chips instead of multi-gigabit DIMMs. I remember losing the rubber stoppers too. \$\endgroup\$ Jun 11, 2017 at 14:21

Most of the time, IC are shipped within these plastic tube highlighted by @Sourabh_Tapas. But sometimes, they are shipped in a box with foam. Those box provide pins and a good ESD protection. You can find some here. enter image description here

  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Looks like a very nerdy marriage proposal. :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Maxpm
    Jun 11, 2017 at 13:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Maxpm So true ^^' I didn't thought about it \$\endgroup\$
    – M.Ferru
    Jun 11, 2017 at 14:01
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Maxpm - only if you get one of these to go in it. \$\endgroup\$
    – Jules
    Jun 11, 2017 at 17:33

you could find what you need in any datasheet of the dip packaged IC, description of the type of storage of IC is generally at the end of the datasheet. type of storage is called "reel" and "tube" in datasheet, both of type is must be antistatic package

you can search as "antistatic tube IC package" and see what you want :)

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to EE.SE. What the picture shows is neither a reel or a tube so this answer is not correct. Read the question again. \$\endgroup\$
    – Transistor
    Jun 16, 2017 at 7:06
  • \$\begingroup\$ Unfortunately this isn't in the datasheet - as per my comment above, the retailer adds this packing material to the chip when shipping it so it is not supplied by the chip manufacturer and consequently not mentioned in the datasheet. \$\endgroup\$
    – Malvineous
    Jun 16, 2017 at 9:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ sorry I wrote it as an alternative solution, thanks \$\endgroup\$ Jun 18, 2017 at 7:40

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