Are DEC TK50/TK70 tapes worth hanging onto?

william degnan billdegnan at
Tue Oct 18 15:05:47 CDT 2016

On Tue, Oct 18, 2016 at 11:32 AM, Thomas Dzubin <dzubint at> wrote:

> OK, I have a fairly large collection of VAX 4000 and VAXStation 3000
> systems which I have fun with and use with both OpenVMS and OpenBSD
> over the years....
> But, I also have two big rubbermade containers (about half a cubic
> meter) filled with TK50 and TK70 tapes which I have never used.
> Some are blank, some are the boot & install media for VMS 5.5, some are
> software installations, etc. etc.
> In the past 25 years that I have had them, I have not once ever used
> my TK50 or TK70 drives...I've always either booted off the attached
> disks or netbooted.
> Should I just throw these things out?   Do any collectors consider them
> to be valuable?   Since it's now 2016 and I think the last TK tapes were
> made in the 1990s, I'm getting the urge to toss them.
> Opinions?  Comments?
Good question, there are those capstans that may not hold their shape,
ruining the tapes.  I have a box of RK05s, one has VMS 4.6 label, no idea
if it works.  But there it is.

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