VOGONS


First post, by Scraphoarder

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member

It looks like sources for old hardware is becoming scarce, or is it so?
For a long time i have suspected there is still a lot of treasures around in homes and companies. Yes much are recycled in an alarming rate, but people often keeps thing for decades before they throw anything.

Here in Norway groups on Facebook seems to be more popular for local and national, buy, sell and giveaway for all sorts of used items.
So today i thought i would post in a local public group with about 9600 members. I posted i was looking for beige computers and parts about 15 years old or more. Wrote instead of taking them to the recycler i could come get them and take out the harddrive if needed. Just after one minute the first response came and more came in after. I jumped in my car to come get some peoples old computers and after one hour i got quite a diverse bunch:

Facebook_pickup120715.jpg
Filename
Facebook_pickup120715.jpg
File size
366.96 KiB
Views
1380 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

I forgot to write in my posting i wanted only desktops so i got two laptops also. A Dell Latitude E6400 and a HP G7000 that was a little beaten up in one corner, but both start up.
Most interesting is the 5 desktops i also got for free for just two litres of gasoline driving around to pick them up. I got species from 486 to Dual Core.

Unitech_486_DX33.jpg
Filename
Unitech_486_DX33.jpg
File size
588.46 KiB
Views
1380 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

I bellieve this is the oldest one from a Norwegian oem brand called Unitech. An ISA only Opti based motherboard with 16 simmslots, but only half of them populated with probably 1MB simms. A 486 DX33 CPU, SCSI controller (CDC?), an IO card without IDE and a Tseng ET4000AX came in this white AT minitower.

2theMAX_ET4000AX.jpg
Filename
2theMAX_ET4000AX.jpg
File size
634.26 KiB
Views
1380 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception
HP_Vectra_486-dx33.jpg
Filename
HP_Vectra_486-dx33.jpg
File size
587.43 KiB
Views
1380 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

Another 486 DX33 , but now a HP Vectra 486/66XMdesktop. Why the dx66 was replaced with a dx33 overdrive i dont know. Only add on card is a 3Com509.

Dell_Dimension_XPS_T500.jpg
Filename
Dell_Dimension_XPS_T500.jpg
File size
646.91 KiB
Views
1380 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

A nice Dell Dimension XPS T500 With a slot1 P3-500, 128MB ram, 3Com905b nic and a TNT2 32MB AGP. Not bad 😊

The black sheep is a Dell Vostro 200 With some Dual Core CPU and the beige ATX miditower to the right is a REC "something" with a KT7 Pro motherboard and probably some Athlon XP CPU. Graphics in this box is a ATI Rage XL AGP.

I could only pic this up today and tomorrow i go look for 5-6 more systems and im exited based on todays "Experiment". So you see it could still be things laying around waiting to get picked up. Take with you some tools such as screwdriver with bits (dont forget hex15) if the previous owners want to keep the HDDs.
I follow up tomorrow and post the outcome.

Last edited by Scraphoarder on 2015-07-13, 15:54. Edited 5 times in total.

Reply 1 of 42, by DavyJ

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie

Really nice finds - especially that 486 with the Tseng ET4000! That right there makes your whole journey worth it!
The E6400 is still usuable today - faster than any of my laptops!

Your right that old hardware is getting much harder to find. It's also getting pricier - but most parts are far more rare than they are expensive.
I'm lucky, being in Silicon Valley, that I still come across stuff more frequently - and usually in pretty decent condition. But they were so much easier to get in the late 90s.

Then again, some of the stuff I'm after would be rare even 20 years ago...

Reply 2 of 42, by Scraphoarder

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
DavyJ wrote:

Really nice finds - especially that 486 with the Tseng ET4000! That right there makes your whole journey worth it!
The E6400 is still usuable today - faster than any of my laptops!

Many people treat their PCs as an appliance. If the OS gets screwed or just some other minor failure they think its broken and just go buy a new one.
Such a waste.. I could probably have posted i wanted 5 years+ PCs and i could get many. I consider anything with a dualcore oCPU usable for todays use for just surf the web and watch some YT videos.

Reply 3 of 42, by DavyJ

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie

Part of it is them treating it like an appliance, but at least in my area, I think there's a much bigger reason.

The price of computers are dirt cheap, yet the cost of labour is expensive. 15-30 years ago computers could easily cost $1500-2500, or often many times that. It makes sense to fix something that expensive when the cost of labour is peanuts.
Currently, one can pickup a pretty competent brand new laptop or desktop for $300-500 and dropping. It's not uncommon for virus removal service in my area run around $140-190. At that cost you are a good ways to replacing the system.

Reply 4 of 42, by smeezekitty

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
DavyJ wrote:

Part of it is them treating it like an appliance, but at least in my area, I think there's a much bigger reason.

The price of computers are dirt cheap, yet the cost of labour is expensive. 15-30 years ago computers could easily cost $1500-2500, or often many times that. It makes sense to fix something that expensive when the cost of labour is peanuts.
Currently, one can pickup a pretty competent brand new laptop or desktop for $300-500 and dropping. It's not uncommon for virus removal service in my area run around $140-190. At that cost you are a good ways to replacing the system.

But many times those problems can be fixed at home by following a guide. Doesn't help that they often don't ship OS discs anymore.

Reply 5 of 42, by Scraphoarder

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
DavyJ wrote:

Part of it is them treating it like an appliance, but at least in my area, I think there's a much bigger reason.

The price of computers are dirt cheap, yet the cost of labour is expensive. 15-30 years ago computers could easily cost $1500-2500, or often many times that. It makes sense to fix something that expensive when the cost of labour is peanuts.
Currently, one can pickup a pretty competent brand new laptop or desktop for $300-500 and dropping. It's not uncommon for virus removal service in my area run around $140-190. At that cost you are a good ways to replacing the system.

Yes the same goes for Norway. Almost nothing is worth repairing due to outrageous labour costs. And what about engineering/design of electronics and especially for computers? Most desktops followed some sort of standard, but it could be better with lets say a more modular design. Slot in PSUs and expansion cards couldnt be so difficult to implement? Servers have had hot swap PSUs for a decade or more, but every vendor has their own design and even they change them with each new model!? We that upgraded our computes could keep many parts for years. Anyway we are a minority and most folks dont realise their psu, optical drive, nics, case etc could be reused for a long time.
The new trend where tablets and laptops are glued together and beyond servicing just make me sad. Should probably start getting Ninja skills with a hair drier, sharp knifes, suction cups and more to be ready fixing all those Surface Pros that would become useless after their batteries or SSDs dies...

Last edited by Scraphoarder on 2015-07-14, 05:07. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 6 of 42, by PeterLI

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

NO is a very unique place for a couple of reasons. Very nice that you were / are able to collect so many systems so easily. In NL (where I used to live) and US (where I live now) finding old computers is possible but typically not for free and sometimes includes pretty long distances. Pentium III and beyond is also a lot easier obviously.

I do not believe however old hardware becomes harder to find. With eBay / Craigslist / Amazon and fora like this one there are so many channels to obtain anything needed. However: it does require spending some $ (especially on shipping) typically.

Reply 7 of 42, by Scraphoarder

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
Facebook _pickup130715-1.jpg
Filename
Facebook _pickup130715-1.jpg
File size
437.83 KiB
Views
1128 views
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

Todays first Facebook pickup. This lot is drifting away from my 15+ year scope, but cant be picky? All this came from one person and i just took all he offered me for free. He asked how much i took if i could get out pictures for him. I said i do it for free since i just got an usb SATA/IDE hdd dock.

Also two laptops today, one Toshiba and a Fujitsu Siemens. Havent tested them yet. A Radeon x700 pro and a tuner card laid in a small Box.
To the left is a cheesy empty atx case. In the middle black case there is a K8N Neo4 motherboard With an unknown cpu, HD4670 Graphics, SB X-Fi that probably came from the empty case and a Linksys wificard.
The last one is the most retro with a beige Aopen atx case. Inside there is a Aopen AX6BC motherboard with a slot 1 Celeron 366, Creative Riva TNT 16MB, Creative dxr2, Ensonic es1370 audio, a SCSI card and a Mustek 8-bit ISA SCSI controllercard.

Have more replies that i have to check out, but im so far pleased with the outcome. This local FB Group have as i mentioned 9600 members and covers primary my local district with just about 10000 inhabitants. Not all members live here, but i think i never could have reached out to such an active crowd in the more traditional online marketplaces here in Norway. The best thing is that 90% live within a 15min drive 😊

Reply 8 of 42, by obobskivich

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

Very nice finds, and very interesting approach to getting hardware. I would not have expected such a robust turn-out, honestly. Do you have any plans for this stuff currently? E.g. are you going to grab hardware from multiple boxes to build a single machine, or are you restoring these for friends, etc?

Reply 9 of 42, by dogchainx

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
  • Quality 286 and 386 hardware is starting to become scarce, IMO. Those are once every 6 months at my local thrift store. I grab them immediately. On ebay, not so scarce.
  • 486 and Pentium 1 hardware is pretty common on ebay but getting difficult to find at my local thrift store. I pick up the 486's...the Pentium 1's, not so much.
  • Pentium II systems are once a month or two finds, while Pentium III's are there every week or two. I pass those by usually, since I already have two Pentium II systems and a good quality Pentium III system.
  • Pentium 4 and AMD systems are everywhere....no shortage of those at all.

386DX-40MHz-8MB-540MB+428MB+Speedstar64@2MB+SoundBlaster Pro+MT-32/MKII
486DX2-66Mhz-16MB-4.3GB+SpeedStar64 VLB DRAM 2MB+AWE32/SB16+SCB-55
MY BLOG RETRO PC BLOG: https://bitbyted.wordpress.com/

Reply 10 of 42, by Scraphoarder

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
obobskivich wrote:

Very nice finds, and very interesting approach to getting hardware. I would not have expected such a robust turn-out, honestly. Do you have any plans for this stuff currently? E.g. are you going to grab hardware from multiple boxes to build a single machine, or are you restoring these for friends, etc?

I suspected that i could get some nice items, but i see it could be a problem if i just go pick up everything people want me to have a look at. Just two pick up rounds under 24hrs and i already got 8 towers/desktop and 4 laptops. Yesterday i didnt take a couple of laptops because they were too modern.. Im already getting space problems with all this added to all i already have.
Have now four people that want me to look at their PCs they have in storage.
Most are thankfull then i come and salvage their "junk" and many have keept them for so long time because they dont know how to save their old data. Some cant figure out you just can get out the drive and keep that instead of the whole system.

I dont have any plans, but i want to make 4-5 systems such as 286/386, 486, P5 Socket4 or 5, K6-2 SuperSocket7, Pentium 3 and maybe a Socket 478 P4. Have already plenty of parts, but now want spare parts if i build theese systems. Dont know what i do with leftovers, but the most modern things i think i try to give away to friends or family.
Want to donate or sell something if i know it gets preserved and get in good hands. Problem is shipping from Norway domestic and international is stupid expensive. In the meantime i do mine part to preserve history, but space for storage is already a challenge. I also collect snowmobiles from the mid nineties...

Last edited by Scraphoarder on 2015-07-14, 05:11. Edited 3 times in total.

Reply 11 of 42, by Scraphoarder

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
dogchainx wrote:
  • Quality 286 and 386 hardware is starting to become scarce, IMO. Those are once every 6 months at my local thrift store. I grab them immediately. On ebay, not so scarce.

I have only one 286 and one 386 in working condition and to be honest im not so interested in them or getting more. Our first PC was a 286, but was only used fo Word Perfect. When i studied at college i got a used 386 that i had Win3.11 and Word on. I never did any gaming those days so for me they dont have any nostalgic value. Dont get a kick of typing in text editors, but tinkering with old hardware are fun 😊

dogchainx wrote:
  • 486 and Pentium 1 hardware is pretty common on ebay but getting difficult to find at my local thrift store. I pick up the 486's...the Pentium 1's, not so much.

For now i think i never have to resort to eBay to get hands on theese. Have already too many of 486 and Pentium 1 systems so i probably get rid of some. My primary interest is gaming and a 486dx4-100 and maybe a 233mmx will be enough. Have a K6-2-450 so maybe the 233mmx is not needed. The HP Vectra 486 i got yesterday is not needed, but PS2 ports are nice to have.

Reply 12 of 42, by ExTneicsol

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member

🤣 Damned, if the shipping cost wasnt so high, ive ask you to send your overstock here ... with the retro gaming trend ... the price have increased radically ... and everyone try to make money of their old stuff.

Reply 14 of 42, by DavyJ

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie
Scraphoarder wrote:

I dont have any plans, but i want to make 4-5 systems such as 286/386, 486, P5 Socket4 or 5, K6-2 SuperSocket7, Pentium 3 and maybe a Socket 478 P4. Have already plenty of parts, but now want spare parts if i build theese systems. Dont know what i do with leftovers, but the most modern things i think i try to give away to friends or family.
Want to donate or sell something if i know it gets preserved and get in good hands. Problem is shipping from Norway domestic and international is stupid expensive. In the meantime i do mine part to preserve history, but space for storage is already a challenge. I also collect snowmobiles from the mid nineties...

Instead of a regular Pentium III system, use that Celeron 366! The 366, and the 300A were legendary overclockers. You can often boost the FSB (if the RAM is fast enough) from 66MHz to 100MHz and you have a very speedy 550MHz system!

Reply 16 of 42, by Scraphoarder

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
ExTneicsol wrote:

🤣 Damned, if the shipping cost wasnt so high, ive ask you to send your overstock here ... with the retro gaming trend ... the price have increased radically ... and everyone try to make money of their old stuff.

Have read many posts here about problems getting stuff, so i wanted to share my approach to get things for free. Facebook i hate a bit, but for some things it has opened new possibilites that never could been achieved before.
I have posted some old furniture and things that i wanted to give away or sell and after minutes someone wants it.

Overstock i think indeed i will have when i get oversight over my inventory. After i started cleaning up in my basement so much saw daylight again. Feel very fortunate to just have many of the components many are looking for. Pure luck i didnt throw all away ten years ago, so now i can start my retro adventure with a solid base. On top of this i work in an IT department where i have kept all sorts of things decomissioned many years ago to my coworkers frustration. This summer we have to clean up, so many things have already went to recycling. I have the difficult task to point out what have to go so i feel like Oscar Schindler when deciding what is worthy to survive 😵
Kept about 20 Compaq Evo D510 SFF With P4 2.4ghz, but 30 borthers and sisters with 2.0ghz and 1.8ghz had to go to recycling with 80 Compaq Evo N600c laptops among dozens of other various types. Because of guilt i saved about 40 500mb-6.4gb IDE hardrives today 😊

SPBHM wrote:

over here you can find old PC Chips based PCs, but more than that it gets tricky, and yes, 286-486 era hardware was easy to get maybe 10 years ago, right now they are pretty rare,

I think the situation are the same here for 286-386, but i got two 486 yesterday so some is still collecting dust somewhere.

DavyJ wrote:

Instead of a regular Pentium III system, use that Celeron 366! The 366, and the 300A were legendary overclockers. You can often boost the FSB (if the RAM is fast enough) from 66MHz to 100MHz and you have a very speedy 550MHz system!

The nice thing about slot 1 is i can easy change! Have also PII 266,350,400, PIII 450,500,600, 850, 1000 and a Celeron 466 in a slotket. Have also some 133mhz slot 1 CPUS from scrapped Compaq Proliants.

sgt76 wrote:

Nice catch on the aopen ax6bc system. Legendary board and components. I do hope it gets some TLC and good use. Enjoy!

Thank you! Have not tested it yet so i hope its still alive. It joins two other AX6BC Pro, one ABIT BE6 II Raid and yesterdays slot 1 based Dell Dimension 😊

Reply 17 of 42, by seanneko

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie

I live in Australia and it seems difficult to get anything at all here anymore, or at least that's the case in the city I live.

I've posted on Gumtree (popular buy/sell site) offering to buy old computers and not really had any decent responses. I'm prepared to pay money for them but I still can't find much. It's easy enough to find anything Pentium 4 onwards. Pentium 3 are uncommon but still come up sometimes. Pentium 2 and earlier are difficult to find. Good luck finding something like a 386, it's close to impossible now unless you're willing to pay a premium to get one off eBay.

We do have thrift shops around (they're called op shops here), but they pretty much only sell clothes and other boring things. I've heard that if they do receive donated electronics, it automatically gets thrown out because they're scared of legal issues if it's faulty and hurts someone.

Reply 18 of 42, by PhilsComputerLab

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

Is that right?

My good friend / neighbour, he's also into old Computers, whenever he's in Perth he always hauls back a car load of old stuff 😀

I rely mostly on eBay, but work has also been a good source.

YouTube, Facebook, Website

Reply 19 of 42, by Scraphoarder

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member

Like i mentioned earlier it seems like most people here use FB now for sell, buy, giveaways etc for everything as their primary source. If no response or success the more traditional online marketplaces are used. Maybe its only here folks do this?
I see why FB have become popular for this, because "everyone" are there and use it all the time. When using local groups for my city/county i reach out my neighborhood so things get a lot easier. Can do quick pickup or delivery without the hassle of shipping items with wrapping, fees, waiting time and more. Yesterday i got in contact with a guy wanting laptops of any condition and he also get a lot of response. He came to my work and got some things he neeed. He almost cried when i told him we recycled around 200 laptops last month 😊