Thinking about acquiring PDP stuff

allison ajp166 at
Tue Nov 29 19:18:05 CST 2016

On 11/29/2016 06:51 PM, Noel Chiappa wrote:
>     > From: Brad H
>     > I was thinking about trying to acquire something early 70s...
> Anything DEC early 70's is going to be fairly expensive, alas. Only once one
> gets to QBUS -11's does the price come down.
>     > if it is feasible to buy in pieces .. but is dependent on parts
>     > availability
> I would not recommend this route. Those machines are a lot of bits and
> pieces, and if you buy a few, unless you're incredibly lucky, it will take
> forever for the rest of them to show up. There will be a few things that just
> never show. (Even when buying a 'complete' system, one will often find that
> it has been robbed of a few critical components, probably cannabilized to
> keep another machine running BITD.)
> There might be a rare exception (I see the guys in Mahwah selling a PDP-8
> chassis, and also a front panel with switches, and it _might_ be possible to
> round up all the boards - but that's more like the exception than the rule.)
> 	Noel
I'll add my penny...

The likelihood of success is based on available money and space to store
That and how common they were/are.  For example a PDP-6, I believe under
30 were made so
finding one is very unlikely and also going to be expensive to acquire
never mind restore.

So Unibus PDP-11s, they were largely going away by the late 70s to mid
80s with maybe 15000 made
 where Qbus 11s were ramping up from about 76 on though relatively
recently with something north
of 50,000 made.  Easier to find and fix too as they used parts that
aren't quite as extinct.  Its also good
that the early MicroVAX used the same bus and IO boards to add to the

Same would apply to the PDP-5, 12 and later its follow on the PDP8.  The
Omnibus 8s are easier
to find and fix compared to the 8I/L and earlier machines, less costly

There are other machines like Data General to consider as well.  Or
likely things that were
common in your geography.

Me, I've only been collecting since the mid 70s so patience has been an aid.


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