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Thread: When you DIE, will your collection Die also ? ie Chucked in a Junk skip by others

  1. #1
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    Question When you DIE, will your collection Die also ? ie Chucked in a Junk skip by others

    Ok this is always a touchy subject to those that collect anything.

    Hopefully this post will get more comments than just views, as I really feel all have to put not just their mind to read and think, but put their thoughts in to actions. And a good starting action to save you collection, is to take the step and Comment here, about your own action plan.

    WHAT ... you don't have an Action Plan prepared, to save your collection when you 'leave us" ? Why NO I ask ?


    Interested to discuss current though's of all here.

    I am also asking each of you what role do you think the extensive use of Social Media, Ebay and Google, may play in saving your 'treasures', for future generations or other foke to get pleasure from ?

    Mind you what happens to your collection, really comes down to a few core facts. I have done my best to list my views on these as follows.
    Note all numbers and sizing comments are just my take on it, and have no actual foundations.

    A. the size/number of items in your collection.

    1. Small (1 to 10),
    2. Medium(11-99),
    3. Large(100-1000)
    4. Huge (1000-10,000) spread across 3 shipping containers, a 40ft semi trailer, 1 shed and 3 rooms under house (( mm me )) ok and my bedroom, and tiny corner of lounge room. VERY tiny corner,trust me on that one !

    5. DAMN, were is there any spare space in or around the house and the 100+ sheds, on this 20 acre block of land ? NO NOT ME !!

    B. what state are most of the items ?
    1. Complete and functioning,
    2. Complete but display only,
    3. Complete but un-restored,
    4. Work in progress,
    5. "sacrificial junk", and
    6. "useless things I cannot get rid of, because they could be a part of something dad pulled to pieces 60+ years ago, and I may just find the rest of it when I clean up. or other x, y, z reason".

    nearly forgot
    7a. Any special tools that go with a specific item in the collection.
    are they located with or near to that item ?
    or
    are they in you special tools box along with other 'special' tools, that only you know what they are mainly for ?

    I have a few teletype tools that are specifically for my teletypes or telex machines, yet they are super useful, when I am working on one of the analog mechanism I have or re-calibrating a microscope balance. So they all "live" together in the special tools timber multi drawer box.

    7b. then there is Documentation and possibly software for each collection items, to be noted what is it and where it is. Often its not located next to the item on display.

    C.
    are items in B1,B2 and B3. located in well defined locations so they can NOT be confused with items of type B5 & B6

    are items in B4 category located, so all parts or sub assemblies and any documentation, can be easily located disposed as a lot. ?

    D. how well documented it is collection ?
    and
    MOST importantly is this Documentation easily accessible to those left behind ?
    No POINT having it on a password protected laptop, that only you have password for !!!!

    D. how many foke know personally of your collection; or have visited and viewed/touched your items.

    will they assist those left in the disposal of your collection or possibly ( one hopes not) "steal" ( for a $1) all the major items for themselves ?

    as my heading says "When you DIE, will your collection Die also ? ie Chucked in a Junk skip by others"




    The old phrases..

    "Grandpa has a such a load of junk in his shed !!"

    "Grandma has such a load of rubbish in her house !!"

    "My partner collects stupid things, cannot wait to get rid of them"

    "My partners collection is in EVERY room in the house, EVEN to loo !!!!" Yes, this is a friend of mine. Sigh.

    "I will finally get my cluttered house back, once all the 'crap' has gone to the tip"

    still get voiced. Sure you have heard other phrases that make you cringe and imagine all you good work restoring x going for naught as it ends up in landfill.

    Personally since I have a huge, and diverse collection, covering :- sciences, technology, natural history, and like, I worry about its possible demise. I have seen more than my fair share of a lifetime, just thrown away with no regard.

    I am in the throws, at 64 years of age of downsizing. Step 1 for me is selling or disposing of any item, that I cannot lift with 2 hands.

    This so far has removed 9 major items, 1 weighing over 50 tons (full size 2-8-4 steam engine), and 8 machine tools average weight 3 tons.
    Just leaves me my 9" lathe, small mill and pan folder, the 40ft semi trailer (used as storage) and a unique 2 ton rotating wound disc BRUSH electric generator circa 1904.

    Ok my three 7000 family Tektronix scopes and the Tektronix 576 curve tracer, I am now finding heavy to lift.

    Also my EAI TR-20 Analog computer is almost a two person lift, and when fully set up my vintage Richert inverted Metallurgical Microscope is a 2 man lift.

    The rest of my bits are mostly average size to small, but at the moment, almost all, are packed away. + over 1000 books in my library.

    The car, tip truck, mini excavator and 2 ton crawler crane, I own, are just renovation tools, that will be sold once we finish the property improvements, so they dont count as Collection items.

    I am painfully aware of the issues of my eventual passing will have on those left to deal will my extensive horde of bits.

    So over to you lot to think on and discuss.

    regards
    David
    Last edited by inotarobot; December 18th, 2015 at 06:51 PM.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by inotarobot View Post
    I have a huge, and diverse collection, covering :- sciences, technology, natural history, and like, I worry about its possible demise.
    Why?

    Seriously, Why?

  3. #3

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    A. While my collection use to be between 10 and 100 pieces, bad circumstances forced me to move and downsize. I now have 1 real system.
    B. The system which is an IBM 5150, 5152, 5153, and 5161 are fully functional and loaded.
    C. Since the collection is so small, those who are in my inner circle know what it is and where it is.
    D. I have the documentation for the system but there is no documentation for passwords, etc, since there are none.

    Food-for-Thought:
    Over the past summer I won a few auctions in Eastern Massachusetts. When I got there I could not believe the amount of stuff. I felt kind of like an ass when I got to the door to pick it up because it was local pickup only, to ask for the young man's father. Come to find out the father had passed away and since they had to move, they needed to unload this stuff in a hurry while trying not to just give it away. I left with 10+ systems, both PC's, XT's, and AT's. History is important to me, all kinds of history. And this young man's paternal collection lives on since the parts were transplanted to other people all over the world It is bittersweet to think of where our stuff might go. It is scary where I think I might go.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by lyonadmiral View Post
    The system which is an IBM 5150, 5152, 5153, and 5161 are fully functional and loaded.
    You need a 5151 for that system.

    My 5150 has both CGA and 5151 mono monitors running together.

    I've got an extra if you want one.


    Quote Originally Posted by lyonadmiral View Post
    It is bittersweet to think of where our stuff might go. It is scary where I think I might go.
    Don't worry about where you're going -- we all know where that will be and you don't have a choice, anyway. Just worry about the stuff.
    PM me if you're looking for 3" or 5" floppy disks. EMail For everything else, Take Another Step

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    Quote Originally Posted by Al Kossow View Post
    Why?

    Seriously, Why?
    well Al, I had grandparents, and parents that collected.
    I had a special Aunt, whom collected a lot of quite nice books and objects from the 1800's.

    When she moved house in the early 1900's, Wilson's Removalists, Australia largest moving Company of the time, wrote to my Aunt, thanking her for choosing them to move her extensive house lot.
    They went on to say in the letter, that I still have, that the only other comparable move they had ever made as big, was when that moved our Government house contents. Yes I still have some of her possessions. Mind you I am slowly selling them off.

    Guess COLLECTING is in my blood/ genes.

    Two of my PDP-8E's we rescued from a junk skip outside a Government building in the center of my city, 20 years back.

    I have been collecting all my life, much of it I use, at least every 3 to 6 months.

    OK some I don't, but I have saved many 10's of tons of equipment and literature from Land fill.

    Some small % I kept, some I past on to others, some recycled and the best or unique parts saved.

    And being an Robotics and Electronics Engineer + originally an Industrial Electrical Technician, + apprentice trained higher Diesel Technician (CAT trained), I have an eye for the unique and interesting objects.

    Plus for many years I owned and operated a service business, so some came to me as bits left over after an upgrade etc.

    and I worry about its demise, as my lady friend of 14+ years is not well, and could not cope disposing of my collection.
    Also I have no family.
    and most of my friend are not collectors. preferring almost zero bits surrounding them. A few have said just trash the lot and move on.
    Last edited by inotarobot; December 18th, 2015 at 07:55 PM.

  6. #6

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    For those of us without children or without /interested/ children then this is an extremely interesting topic.

    I think people should certainly plan for the timely or untimely eventuality.

    I quite realise that I could die any day in a road related incident and personally with the time I spend on 2 wheels, it become a numbers game.

    So the options are to actually find somebody who actually cares to take it on, possibly for free.

    To me somebody who would actually use it.

    In this truly international world and community, I'd nominate somebody close, or if there is nobody as close to the /action/ as you then somebody even far away on a Vintage Computer forum far away.

    regards marcus
    (still alive)

  7. #7

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    Two words, estate sale.

    Honestly, when I'm on my deathbed, the last thing I'm going to be worried about is my collection of old junk. I'm going to be thinking about the people I love and probably regretting doing or not doing some things.

    At the end of the day (or my life), it's just "stuff", and it doesn't matter to me where it ends up.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plasma View Post
    Two words, estate sale.
    At the end of the day (or my life), it's just "stuff", and it doesn't matter to me where it ends up.
    Exactly.

    I have been disposing of my collection for 10 years now. I will be 60 in June, and as a curator at the Computer History Museum
    I deal with this topic several times a month when we have to tell a relative that we aren't going to take Uncle Joe's pile of old PCs.

    The demographic on this list is different from cctlk. There are a lot more people here still young enough to be seriously collecting,
    but the things they are interested in are 10 to 20 years newer than what people have that started collecting in the 70's.

    Seriously, go through what you have and keep what really matters to you and get rid of the rest. One thing you shouldn't
    do is worry about what happens to it in toto. "Your" collection is yours. To others it will be a pile of stuff to cherry pick through.

    If you want a different spin on the topic, look in the cctlk archives when this has come up.

  9. #9

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    Some of my rarer items I'd like to go to good homes, though. My fiancee is fortunately very tolerant and knows I need my lab space, but I'd probably need to downsize some should we move, and in a few decades I don't want her to worry about how to get rid of it all.

    Doesn't everyone fantasize about starting a 501(c)(3) for their collection? Or is that just me?
    I use my C128 because I am an ornery, stubborn, retro grouch. -- Bob Masse
    Machine room updated for 2019!: http://www.floodgap.com/etc/machines.html

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ClassicHasClass View Post
    Doesn't everyone fantasize about starting a 501(c)(3) for their collection? Or is that just me?
    Has that ever ended well for anyone?

    I seriously need to stop acquiring anything and should really get rid of most of the stuff I have now. Someday it might be nice to be able to pack up and move without having to pack much stuff at all.

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