Storing sorted things

User avatar
elecplus

12 Jul 2016, 20:52

Storage is starting to become an issue for me. I have over 60 buckets of keyboards, mostly sorted by brand and type. That is OK for now. But what do you suggest for storing cleaned, inspected, and sorted small parts, like key caps? Just on the IBM caps alone there are almost 200 different caps, and then there are 1-part and 2-part. Then there are Apple caps, space invaders, Alps, Cherry MX caps, and list grows exponentially. How does one store 500 different sets of small parts in widely varying quantities? Space is an issue, now that I don't have the warehouse. Any and all suggestions greatly appreciated.

User avatar
Wodan
ISO Advocate

12 Jul 2016, 21:23

I have five of these flexible organizers:
Image

But I am planning to get about 15-20 more of them. Four of them are used for keycaps, about 2-3 compartments will hold a set of Cherry keycaps. One of them is used as a switch toolbox containing Cherry MX and Alps switch parts. Even small party like the diodes/jumpers removed from harvested Cherry switches and a wide array of different MX springs.

The transparent lid help identify the content fast. But I used a UV proof spray coat to cover the lids of the organizers I use to store light ABS caps to protect them from UV light.

Oh and they stack well.

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Here's another option that doesn't stack nearly as well!
Image

User avatar
Chyros

13 Jul 2016, 01:15

I hold my keycaps in zip seal bags, either as sets or as types. For example, you can keep a full set of Model M caps in one bag, or compounded incomplete sets in another.

I keep switches and other parts in plastic boxes, essentially Tupperware, except the absolute cheapest variety. Things I hae a lot of go in bigger boxes, things I have only a few of go in small sauce pots. The boxes I stack in a collapsible crate.

I use really cheap labels to stick on the boxes to label them. The good thing about cheap labels is that they come off easily if you re-purpose the box, too.

User avatar
clickykeyboards

13 Jul 2016, 02:11

When I first started, I just kept the keycaps on the frames of scrapped model M keyboards stacked in the workshop. But that took up too much valuable space that I needed for more important restoration projects. Without grouping the keys, I would often waste time searching through the pile and I never had a means to estimate the inventory of individual keys that I needed to save while scrounging (or had an excess of).

*The most often lost keys on the model M keyboard are #1) Esc key, #2) Ctrl key, #3) minus key from numberpad.

Here's a photo of how I now have my model M keycaps stored in an old 5-drawer organizer for 35mm photographic slides.

I get daily requests for single-key replacements and without having an organized system, it would not be cost-effective or time-effective to help the 500+ annual requests for vintage spare parts.

http://www.theverge.com/2014/10/7/6882427/king-of-keys
model-m-replacement-keys.jpg
Organization and storage of model M key covers
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rootwyrm

13 Jul 2016, 03:59

For complete sets, I use ziploc bags. They're cheap, fairly impermeable, reasonably sturdy, and reusable. I use drawers like clickykeyboards for individuals from broken down sets. Just smaller since I don't have as many. Cables get tagged with the origin PN using regular paper tags on string and tossed in a boring plastic bin. (SDL connectors of course, get bubble wrap around them.) These, to be exact. This method works really well when dealing with a variety of makes and models, since like stays with like for caps and if someone says a "G80-1800 Blah Blah" cable you can just check the label.

Certain small parts get significantly more special treatment, depending on how rare/difficult/obnoxious they are to repair/replace/maintain. For example, I have a little plastic box for trackpoint buttons (the silver discs) to rattle around in, but the button covers get individually bubble wrapped and then cardboard wrapped.
Components like M13 and TrackPoint II controllers? Those go in anti-static bags, which get packed in very expensive custom boxes from CCI, one to a box. (The boxes were repurposed from my actual side gig.)

terrycherry

13 Jul 2016, 12:03

I'm using the umbrella plastic bag(free from library) to store the switches, cables and keycaps and than tie the bag.
And the small zip bag store the small parts.
I think this is important
1.clean
2.free to get
3.easy to use and store
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User avatar
fohat
Elder Messenger

13 Jul 2016, 15:01

Wodan wrote:
I have five of these flexible organizers:

But I am planning to get about 15-20 more of them.
Very impressive!

But you probably need to see a psychiatrist.

User avatar
Wodan
ISO Advocate

13 Jul 2016, 18:34

They are five bucks each!

User avatar
need

13 Jul 2016, 18:48

Organising my crap bag :D
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User avatar
Phenix
-p

13 Jul 2016, 19:09

@Wodan:
Can you please send me a link/ where do you buy those?

Rimrul

13 Jul 2016, 19:30

@phenix, they seem to be a store brand of Aldi Süd.

User avatar
Wodan
ISO Advocate

13 Jul 2016, 20:17

Indeed and I have been checking the Aldi deals for months now ... They must be up again soon!
If you want to make them UV proof, I can recommend several layers of PlastiDip.

User avatar
Phenix
-p

13 Jul 2016, 21:08

okay, so Aldi. (and as I saw sometimes Lidl)

Can you please pm me if they pop up again? Thanks

User avatar
pyrelink

13 Jul 2016, 21:21

My storage is terrible. I have these things for storing individual keysets, switches, and other small parts:

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I have probably 20 of those stacked in 5 or 6 large card board boxes. The rest of my stuff just gets dumped into the cardboard boxes, usually right in what ever they were shipped in. Makes locating what you need a pain in the ass, but its easy to stack everything up in the corner of the basement.

User avatar
Phenix
-p

13 Jul 2016, 22:14

@Wodan:

whats the name of those? Are those called "workbox" by Aldi?

User avatar
Elrick

14 Jul 2016, 02:46

fohat wrote:
Wodan wrote:
I have five of these flexible organizers:

But I am planning to get about 15-20 more of them.
Very impressive!

But you probably need to see a psychiatrist.
Only if you start crawling the walls and frightening your kids. All dressed in a Razer Blackwidow X outfit 8-) .

User avatar
elecplus

16 Jul 2016, 17:48

I think I found something that will work for now. These are from Home Depot, and only cost $10 for a 2-pack. They interlock, so you can stack them really tall. And each compartment holds about 30 1-piece IBM caps!
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User avatar
Wodan
ISO Advocate

30 Jul 2016, 17:20

All southern Germans watch out, the organizers I'm using will soon be for sale again:
https://www.aldi-sued.de/de/angebote/an ... ganizer-3/

User avatar
duynguyenle

31 Jul 2016, 17:05

Wodan wrote: All southern Germans watch out, the organizers I'm using will soon be for sale again:
https://www.aldi-sued.de/de/angebote/an ... ganizer-3/
Wodan can you pick up maybe 10 of those and send them to me along with the HADapter kits I ordered? I believe the 3 Euros for HADapter postage fees should cover these as well yeah? :lol:

rootwyrm

31 Jul 2016, 17:17

duynguyenle wrote:
Wodan wrote: All southern Germans watch out, the organizers I'm using will soon be for sale again:
https://www.aldi-sued.de/de/angebote/an ... ganizer-3/
Wodan can you pick up maybe 10 of those and send them to me along with the HADapter kits I ordered? I believe the 3 Euros for HADapter postage fees should cover these as well yeah? :lol:
Good news for US citizens.

https://www.aldi.us/en/grocery-home/hom ... /workzone/

Yep! They're going to be bringing them here themselves.

User avatar
Phenix
-p

07 Mar 2017, 23:32

Wodan wrote: All southern Germans watch out, the organizers I'm using will soon be for sale again:
https://www.aldi-sued.de/de/angebote/an ... ganizer-3/

How do you take care of small parts like diodes? So far I have nearly everything in individual ziploc bags, but this sometimes sucks as recognizing takes a bit longer (I should start writing an "map" of each box ;) )

dubaicare

26 Nov 2019, 17:39

You made some good points there.

mcmaxmcmc

26 Nov 2019, 20:54

Spoiler:
Wodan wrote:
12 Jul 2016, 21:23
I have five of these flexible organizers:
Image

But I am planning to get about 15-20 more of them. Four of them are used for keycaps, about 2-3 compartments will hold a set of Cherry keycaps. One of them is used as a switch toolbox containing Cherry MX and Alps switch parts. Even small party like the diodes/jumpers removed from harvested Cherry switches and a wide array of different MX springs.

The transparent lid help identify the content fast. But I used a UV proof spray coat to cover the lids of the organizers I use to store light ABS caps to protect them from UV light.

Oh and they stack well.

Image
Image
Image

Here's another option that doesn't stack nearly as well!
Image
Very jelly for those Cherry keycaps :lol:

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