Help scrounging in England

Jules Richardson julesrichardsonuk at
Mon Sep 19 08:44:52 CDT 2005

Tom Jennings wrote:
> On Sun, 18 Sep 2005, Jules Richardson wrote:
>> Unfortunately the UK doesn't seem to have the equivalent of US 
>> salvage/surplus places :-(
> WHAT!? How in HELL do you get through a week?! Where does it all go?

Honestly, I'm not sure. I'm tempted to say that there just isn't really 
any classic stuff left in the UK that hasn't found its way into the 
hands of enthusiasts already.

Having said that, a lot of the big companies are still hanging on to 
80's-era equipment (VAXen and the like).

 From the point of view of someone involved with a museum, we still get 
a trickle of big stuff - maybe around 80% DEC, 10% HP, and 10% other.

But I do suspect that most of it's gone to the crusher long ago, or is 
locked away in company basements "just in case" (I suspect in the latter 
case it'll now stay there due to the disposal requirements that Simon 

As I've said before on the list, the computer recycler local to my home 
back in England does get larger classic stuff from time to time - he 
parts them out, with the boards going to someone who rips them apart for 
the gold, and the chassis' all go to a metal recycler just down the road 
from him where they're immediately crunched. I suspect the same is true 
for the other recyclers in the country - I suppose there just isn't the 
space for computer graveyards like in the US.

The curious thing is that 8 bit home micros seem to have all but 
vanished too - perhaps that's because there's no obvious place to get 
rid of them to, and what's left is still tucked away in cupboards of the 
owners (who perhaps have no clue what the machines in question are). 
Hence the reason I suggested freecycle lists, as they're becoming quite 
popular in the UK and it doesn't hurt to join and mention that you're 
interested in any such hardware.

FWIW, car scrapyards are the same in the UK these days - gone are the 
days of huge yards with all sorts of gems tucked away in the corners. 
They're much smaller these days with only a few pretty modern vehicles, 
and places that part out scrap cars (and then sell the bits at much 
higher prices) seem to now be the norm.

Takes all the fun out of it!



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