My Thoughts on Hoarding Items
I am a fan of responsibly hoarding things. My parents are not. They often grow tired of how much I store in my bedroom and the adjacent rooms. Hoarding makes sense though for anyone who likes to build things for a few reasons.
When I come up with ideas for things to build, I never know what I will need until I get to designing my idea. When I'm in the design stage, I often look to existing products that may have a part that would work well for my intentions. Sometimes I'll also find myself regretting I didn’t buy something when I had the chance because it would have worked perfectly with my idea. It's also good to have a collection of random parts that just may come in handy should their functionality be needed.
It often becomes easier to find suitable parts to salvage when there is more to choose from, hence hoarding is good :). I will admit that there have been times where I have hoarded things that have been completely irrational such as an old Mac Classic I bought because it was only three dollars and it worked! I don't really have any use for a very outdated computer, I just thought it was cool.
I also once took home a free Hewlett Packard UHF signal generator model 612A that was built in the early 1950s and even may have still worked. The vacuum tubes glowed and the needles moved when it was powered on! It was about as big as a medium sized dog kennel. I never had any clue as to what to do with it, it sat in my closet for about six months collecting dust. I couldn’t dismantle it for a case mod or salvage parts from it. The UHF generator was a piece of HP history that I could not bring myself to destroy because it looked so cool. When I moved out of the house I was in at the time, I decided to donate it to a local family owned electronics store that has an affinity for old electronics. I thought that out of anyone I could think of, they would appreciate it the most.
On the other side of the spectrum, there have been so many times where my hoarding has come in handy. For example, if it were not for hoarding I would not have had the R2D2 Pepsi cooler that I modified to hold 11 video game consoles, a computer, a sound system, and a projector. R2D2 has been my favorite personal project, thank you hoarding!
More recently I used an old GameCube power supply combined with a donor power supply’s DC plug to power my external hard drive. I had left the hard drive power supply in Seattle and I was in LA, so it only made sense to me to make a new supply rather than have the original power supply mailed down. I am a little impatient and I wanted to have access to my files that night. Plus it’s fun to invent excuses to make things.
Hoarding also has the potential to save money. For example I got my R2D2 Pepsi cooler for free. Had I wanted to buy one, it would have cost me at least 100 dollars and who knows how much more for shipping. The best source I have found for an R2D2 is eBay, but most of the sellers don’t want to ship the cooler so its pick up only. And I have yet to see one located in Seattle where I would have needed it.
Whenever I find an AC adapter or useful looking cable for cheap I will buy it because new cables are often overpriced and used cables are hard to find in general. Plus storing them really doesn’t take up that much space so why not buy useful cables when you see them. Audio and video cables are among my favorite cables to collect. You never know when you will have to jerry rig up a random set of speakers for an improvised movie night. Various power adapters have also been surprisingly useful in the past.
Hoarding can go too far though as South Park recently pointed out in their episode Insheeption. Stan needs help to stop hoarding too much in his locker and a sheep herder won’t admit that he is really a hoarder with a problem. Anyway, I will periodically go through my possessions and try to sort out the things I don’t really need or that probably won’t be useful any time soon. These things then for the most part go to a donation center.
Next week I plan on posting a list of good places to find items to contribute to your own stash!
Copyright, Brian De Vitis, 2013 Contact Me at firstname.lastname@example.org