more vintage computer stuff

Ian Finder ian.finder at
Sat Jul 30 15:24:53 CDT 2016

One other addendum to my last point- oftentimes they mutilate the vintage
devices too-

They'll dremel out a place to put a USB port on a vintage keyboard, or
worse- harvest keyswitches out of them.

I once had a keyboard collector offer to buy a working GRiD Compass 1129
off of me so they could remove the keyboard and make a PC keyboard out of

And they have means and motivation the same as anyone, so they often offer
the same kind of prices a real legitimate collector who wants the whole
system would.

I have also spoken with people who have been contacted by keyboard
collectors who go so far as to lie about owning a machine to close a deal
on a rare keyboard with someone who would not be willing to sell it

It's getting to be a trendy hobby for people who want interesting old
artifacts without space, learning and restoration commitment necessitated
by classic computing, and that's a real problem.


- Ian

On Sat, Jul 30, 2016 at 1:13 PM, Ian Finder <ian.finder at> wrote:

> Cindy wrote:
> > I also participate in at least one of the "dreaded" keyboard forums.
> > Why are they so dreaded to you guys?
> Because they do things like ask the seller of the totally complete,
> obscenely rare Symbolics 3620 on eBay in Finland if they can pay full price
> but leave the system behind and split off the keyboard.
> They see an IBM system in a movie, and don't go "Wow, look at that system
> 360," they say "Wow, look at those beam spring keyboards!"
> They have no interest in restoring machines, or the history of this
> stuff- and they often orphan crucial parts from rare systems. They've made
> it very hard to finish the restorations of some of my systems, as they've
> come to me without the very desirable keyboards which are now coveted
> pieces in some nerd's collection, far away from the devices they are to be
> used with.
> It's like killing an elephant for ivory, or ripping the hood ornament off
> of a vintage Mercedes.
> If it's rare enough and you don't own the system, you have no business
> owning a critical part.
> - Ian
> On Thu, Jul 28, 2016 at 12:20 PM, Electronics Plus <sales at>
> wrote:
>> Thanks Jay! I enjoy helping old things find a new home.
>> It is amazing to me what goes to recyclers!
>> I also participate in at least one of the "dreaded" keyboard forums.
>> Why are they so dreaded to you guys? I have found them to be
>> fantastically helpful!
>> Cindy
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: cctalk [mailto:cctalk-bounces at] On Behalf Of Jay West
>> Sent: Thursday, July 28, 2016 2:16 PM
>> To: 'General Discussion: On-Topic and Off-Topic Posts'
>> Subject: RE: more vintage computer stuff
>> Cindy wrote....
>> --------
>> Sorry if posting my site is not allowed. If so, please delete this post.
>> --------
>> Cindy - thanks for your post.
>> I have seen on occasion a past commercial seller (not here any longer)
>> not fit in well with the mentality of this list. You are not one of those.
>> You're a perfect model of how a commercial seller can be a fantastic
>> contributor to the list. I'm glad you're here, and appreciate the way you
>> participate!
>> Same goes for Paul A and a couple others.
>> J
> --
>    Ian Finder
>    (206) 395-MIPS
>    ian.finder at

   Ian Finder
   (206) 395-MIPS
   ian.finder at

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