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Thread: How do you store your addin/expansion boards?

  1. #1

    Question How do you store your addin/expansion boards?

    I am wondering if anyone has any creative ideas for efficiently storing expansion cards be they ISA, EISA, MCA, VLB, PCI, or PCI-e? Currently I put them in antistatic bags and have them stacked in boxes. This takes a ton of room and makes finding a particular card very difficult. Not to mention probably not the safest thing to do (e.g. avoid bending pins, connectors, etc.).

    Does anyone have a way they really like that keeps things neat, protected, and easily accessible? TIA.
    Current Wish List: 1. IBM 7531 Industrial Series PC 2. NEC MultiSync XL (JC-2001) Monitor 3. MicroSolutions MatchPoint AND/OR UniDOS card 4. Compaq 14" VGA CRT Monitor (the one that came with the SystemPro). 5. Stacker HW CoProcessor Board MCA BUS. If you have any of the above for sale please PM me. Thank you!

  2. #2

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    That's exactly what i've been doing for years and never really had a problem with damage, I don't have the room for much shelving, I keep them in anti static bags and most are in bubble wrap as well, I recently started making a list of what cards are in what boxes, It can be a pain in the ass pulling out a load of cards to get to the one i want but i got no other option really.

  3. #3

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    Ditto... static bags, boxes and a small database or text file log.
    PM me if you're looking for 3" or 5" floppy disks. EMail For everything else, Take Another Step

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    I wish it were easy to find small sizes boxes that fit individual cards easily.

    So aside from a couple of boxes that expansion cards came in originally, I keep most in anti-static bags and piled in larger boxes.

    Placing a piece of cut poster board behind the card in the bag helps prevent cards with sharp pointy bits from ripping up the bag, or scratching up other cards, and makes it a bit easier to pull out the cards.

    And it is often a good idea to include a paper with printed configuration instructions, a description of the card, and the last test status.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
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    New Jersey, USA
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    I store expansion cards in a similar fashion. Sometimes I don't have enough antistatic bags for each card to have its own, or the bags I have are too big. In such situations I might put 2 cards in 1 bag, then fold the bag in half. Sometimes I will sandwich another card between the 2 sides (i.e. place two cards in a large bag, one at the left edge and the second at the right edge. lay a third card on top of the bag, right over where the first card is, then fold over the right half of the bag with the second card inside so it's laying on top.)

    If possible, I try to store cards on their edges within the boxes, so that there's little risk of a card at the bottom of a stack getting squashed and having pins or component leads bent. This also makes it easier to get a card out of the box.

    Many smaller boxes are better than one huge box because you can organize cards by type, e.g. a box of SCSI cards, a box of memory boards, a box of multifunction cards, etc. If a box overflows you can subdivide, e.g. MCA memory boards vs ISA memory boards, or VGA display adapters versus non-VGA, etc. I normally organize by bus type first, then subdivide when a box gets full. So I start with an "MCA adapters" box, then I might later split it into "MCA memory", "MCA network" and "MCA other". Eventually maybe "MCA network" needs to be split into "MCA Ethernet" and "MCA Token-Ring", and so on.

    If I have the original box for a card, I store the card in that along with whatever manuals and accessories I have for it. If I don't have the original box, the manuals and accessories tend to be stored separately from the cards. For example, an unused SCSI cable that came with a SCSI card will stay in the original SCSI card box if I have it, but if I don't have it I just have a general "SCSI cables" box it gets thrown into. The original boxes are very space-inefficient for storage, especially when they are empty because the card is installed in some system, but I really hate to dispose of them.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Connecticut, USA
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    For the most part in cardbosrd boxes. Dont have enough bags or space to do anything better.

  7. #7

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    Welp, it sounds like none of us have invented a better wheel yet! Thanks for chiming in.
    Current Wish List: 1. IBM 7531 Industrial Series PC 2. NEC MultiSync XL (JC-2001) Monitor 3. MicroSolutions MatchPoint AND/OR UniDOS card 4. Compaq 14" VGA CRT Monitor (the one that came with the SystemPro). 5. Stacker HW CoProcessor Board MCA BUS. If you have any of the above for sale please PM me. Thank you!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    For frequently-used ones, a scrap 2x6 with slots cut at about 15 degrees from vertical every inch or so. If you've got a table saw, it's just a few minutes' work. Nothing elegant, but it does the job.

  9. #9

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    Just a cardboard printer paper box to limit myself on hoarding exp cards. Just spares for the machines I have.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Ohio/USA
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    Cardboard boxes, plastic boxes, plastic drawer cabinets pretty much anything. I have 100's of loose cards and I organize them by slot type or platform.
    What I collect: 68K/Early PPC Mac, DOS/Win 3.1 era machines, Amiga/ST, C64/128
    Nubus/ISA/VLB/MCA/EISA cards of all types
    Boxed apps and games for the above systems
    Analog video capture cards/software and complete systems

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