The art of salvaging - Router Forums
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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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Default The art of salvaging

I thought I'd post a reminder to those of you who aren't pack rats that salvaging parts always pays off down the line. My latest project (remember the outhouse post?) requires a small pulley system. A year or so ago I was getting rid of an old analog stereo tuner that had seen better days. I took it apart and salvaged the knobs and such as well as the cord and pulleys for the radio tuner dial indicator.

The cord and one of the pulleys are being recycled for the new project. I guess that's why my shop will never be clean. I'm storing too many small bits that have potential for future use.

Moral: Always salvage. You never know when something will come in handy.
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Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. ~ Leonardo da Vinci

You can't use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have. ~Oscar Wilde
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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 11:43 AM
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I am in complete agreement with you, Oliver. I hate throwing away anything that MIGHT someday be useful. Sometimes what we salvage would be hard to find and maybe expensive if we didn't have it. Takes up space but so what.

"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits". Albert Einstein
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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 11:48 AM
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My mother was a packrat and I think some of it rubbed off on me. I theorize it having something to do with large, poor families growing up through the 30s and 40s, no one threw anything away, my parents basement would have been declared a fire hazard if the fire department ever had a look see. I have tons of small pieces of wood in 1 gallon ziplocks for possible use in projects, I still have a few board feet of mahogany I yanked out of a bungalow in Mashpee in the late 90s, it came from a non local mill and was installed the early 60s. I've torn down tables and bed frames before taking them to the landfill, (when they were still called dumps)
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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 12:07 PM
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You and I should live next door to each other Oliver. Between us we would one of just about anything.
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Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 12:22 PM
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I came up in the 40s and we were poor. Had tons of stuff sitting around. I find it hard to toss stuff as well.
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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 12:49 PM
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My dad was a packrat, but he didn't have any sense of organization. He would spend half a day looking for some obscure part that he was sure he had saved, but couldn't remember where. We were only 5 miles from town, but it seemed like he would waste the whole day to avoid driving to town and spending a dollar. His tools were usually wherever he last used them. Nothing seemed to have a home.

These experiences had an effect on me. I live only 1.5 miles from Home Depot, so I don't even keep large quantities of supplies in stock. I'd rather let them store it. I don't keep scraps of wood shorter than about 6 inches unless it's cherry, which I keep for smoking meat. I throw things away that don't work anymore unless I know what I'll use them for. I guess I'd rather spend the money than live with the clutter and the frustration of not being able to find anything. I cherish my tools and I know right where to find just about every tool I own.

I guess we are all products of our raising, one way or another . . .
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“We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it and stop there lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove lid again and that is well but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore.” - Mark Twain
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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 02:38 PM
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"Takes up space but so what."

Definition of hoarder. It'll be my ruin.
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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 02:44 PM
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Sigh. @DonkeyHody , my dad wasn't quite that bad but I saw a lot of him in your posting. As he got older, he got a worse. When he died the garage in his vacation house was full of stuff. Unbelievably full of crap I could never figure out what he was keeping it for. We are still hauling stuff to the dump 6 years later.

Unfortunately, I also see a lot of him in me. It's really easy to put something down and forget where it is. So I really try hard to be disciplined about putting stuff back, labeling boxes and so on. I always start out with "Hmmm, if I was an X, where would I want to be". It helps to form a general organization structure and then I adhere to it. My kitchen is organized along those lines and it drives my wife a lill crazy (I have that effect on people...). But her sister gave me a huge compliment - "wow, your kitchen is so easy to find things in, it makes so much sense".

Anyway, your scrap wood comment hit home as well. Scraps seem to multiply faster than I cut them. I'm planning to build some sort of storage for the larger pieces. Maybe if my back cooperates, it will happen.

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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 02:57 PM
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Absolutely right. I spend some time each week stripping the drums from washing machines, which we sell as firepits on behalf of a cancer research charity. There are loads of other oddments in there which I can't bear to throw away. Bound to come in useful some day. <(")

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post #10 of 36 (permalink) Old 02-11-2016, 03:11 PM
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Keep it! You never know when you'll need one.

Drives my wife nuts.

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