Huge IBM 1800 find (and need some help)

Dave G4UGM dave.g4ugm at
Sat Mar 21 04:08:21 CDT 2015

1) As its in-place might have been easier to negotiate rent on location, but
probably too much money for one person. 

2) I wonder if it went in through a window. It was common practice to take a
window out and crane the pallets in.

3) If it's a "museum" does any of the documentation remain. There would
usually have been a set of Customer Engineer hardware manuals in a wheeled
trolley. I used to have a photo of these but I can't find it now..


> -----Original Message-----
> From: cctalk [mailto:cctalk-bounces at] On Behalf Of Johannes
> Thelen
> Sent: 21 March 2015 08:17
> To: cctalk at
> Subject: Huge IBM 1800 find (and need some help)
> I hope this is not too long story, but I'd like to start from beginning...
> I was selling and donating my 80's computer collection away, because I
> couldn't get anymore kicks of home computers (gateaway theory is right,
> Commodores are step to mainframes ...)
> Anyways, I asked every buyer have they seen any thing big, old computers
> anywhere here in Finland. One guy gave hint of some truck sized IBM, which
> he had seen at his old job. He told it is probably going to scrap yard and
> sent photo of it. I was stunned, FULL 1800 SYSTEM.
> Next step was find boss who decide what is going to happen that IBM. I
> called him and asked how's IBM. Firstly he thought I'm gold digger. After
> some talk, he became convinced I'm real deal. Sadly, he told me that IBM
is in
> their private museum, and not for sale or not planned to donate anywhere.
> But he invited me to see that IBM. I was little dissapointed, but better
> nothing I thought.
> After couple months, I went to there to see IBM.  Boss had changed at that
> time, there was new guy. He also understand historical value of that big
> no doubt it.  We drove plant where that IBM was. When I see it, I was
> stunned. It was absolute spectacular! It was stood 30 years after service
> dry and warm warehouse, same place where it installed early 70's. It have
> stood still almost long as I have wander this world! Time was stopped that
> room, it looks like we have got back to 80's on time machine. 2311 disk
> was left probably just where they are 30 years ago.
> Here's pic:
> NnRINlhESk5aNUk&authuser=0
> System contains 1801 CPU, 1803 additional core storage unit, 2841 drive
> adapter, couple 2311 hard drives, 1826 data adapter, 1443 printer,
> card readers/punches, etc... It is giant system!
> Now comes twist to plot, this new boss suddenly asked: "When you could
> make pickup for this IBM?". I'm not that type guy, who can get be quiet
> easy, but I could just stutter something like "I can pickup every you
want". :D
> So, I was so excited, own IBM 1800, that is just what I have always
> own mainframe :D (...360 would be even better but this would do the trick
> well ;) We have not that much computers back 60's or 70's. like below 200
> 1970. So you can imagine how rare big iron is here and it is totally
unlikely you
> could find anything this good at Finland these days.
> **************
> But now comes the problem. This IBM is in second floor. There is only
> staircase down to street level. So cabinets have to partly disassemble to
> those "little" bit.
> I would need some kind of document of wireharness and schematics, so I get
> it back together. Also good pictures inside of cabinets would help, so I
> what is waiting me there. And by the way, what weights so much these
> units? CPU weights 907kg, why? Is power supplies so heavy or is there lead
> poured to structure ;) ?
> I'm picking this up next week, at least small items, so I would need some
> good advices also. Rolling cabinets via stair case is not option ;)
> Also any help to bring this back to life is welcome! Thaaaaaanks!
> - Johannes ThelenFinland
> Before microcomputers blog (Finnish)

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