2019 Mega Post - Keyboard Loot, Lore, and Escapades

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01 Dec 2019, 21:26

Now that nominations for this years best finds / collections / restorations are in the hopper for the DTA awards, I figured now was the best time to do a quick recap of this years finds and adventures. ;)

Abandon all hope if you choose to continue on with this madness and the rabbit holes contained within. If you are already here though then it is probably already too late.
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Find #1 - IBM 4978 Beamspring

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The first keyboard of January 2019. Like REVENGE's 4978 this is a centerpiece in my collection and certainly the most I've ever paid for a single keyboard. :roll: Not only was this an impressive find on it's own, this directly led me to the Houston haul.

This same eBay seller soon after sold this stunningly unique 3279 with APL keys and custom colored keys for a whopping $2k! Sadly this was mega pricey and I was spent after already beginning this new year on shaky ground with an expensive acquisition. Also since I happened to come across a great deal last year on a 3279 I don't think I could justify the hassle in selling it for this one as I am quite satisfied by the serentity of the standard white and black colorway. Maybe someone here got it?

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Adventure #1 - The Houston Haul
Houston, We Have a Problem...
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Not at all related to the well known Computer Reset haul in Dallas, this unique stash of vintage computing consisted to my knowledge of 3-4 large storage units and a separate warehouse filled haphazardly like the others. From what I seen in the two storage units I helped sort, many gems seemed to have been at the bottom and of course crushed by the mass of junk piled to the ceiling. I later learned that this all once owned by a man by the name of John Keys. Before his passing, John was trying to establish a computer museum in Houston but it seems there was not enough funding and many items were also damaged by flooding. It seems most or many of the items in this massive collection were transported all the way from Minnesota based on asset tags and other ephemera while others were likely donated towards this cause.

More Info:
http://www.vcfed.org/forum/showthread.p ... tion/page5

Other items from this estate can be seen here:
Xmit's haul
PDP_11's sale thread

The Haul:
Computer Devices Teleterm 1030 - Key Tronic Magnetic Reed

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ATEX Newspaper Editing Terminal Keyboard - There are different varieties of these Atex keyboards and this is a later model with some sort of beefed up foam and fail switch.

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IBM P70 (broken + missing parts) - Alps Plate Spring

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IBM 5140 (broken / parts unit. Recovered some software on a floppy used by the University of Minnesota) - Brown Alps.

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Zenith bros:

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TI bros:

TI low profile keyboard for the 931 terminal - Brown Alps

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TI terminal keyboard - Green Alps
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NMB (Model F AT Clone) - Hi-Tek Series 725 (I forget which)

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Apple IIc - Amber Alps

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NCR DecisionMate IV KB H0150-STD1-01-17 (Orange variant RAFI RS 76 M)

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Magitronic K-158 with vintage MX Blue's

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Dirty NEC APC-H412 - NEC Blue Oval

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Dell AT101 "Old Logo" - Salmon Alps

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Canon KB-101A/CA (Nasty looking but still among the best feeling and sounding blues I've tried)

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Epson Q703C-AA - Fujitsu Leaf Spring Switch 2nd generation

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Adventure #2 - Computer Reset
I did not go :( as I was recovering from an injury and Texas was 1000 miles away so decided not to go. I was also worried I would end up with a truck load of computers and keyboards without adequate storage. Truly an epic adventure.
Adventure #3 - Mound Labs Hoard

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All this in one man's basement in rural Ohio and was sold as one unit at auction. There was more not pictured including 100's of books and manuals.

This man who passed away was an engineer who worked for Mound Labs before they shut down.

Unfortunately it all went to a single bidder as everything went as a single lot and there was a stipulation that everything had to be removed that same weekend :o
Adventure #4 - A Tour of Japan
Not an actual trip but a virtual one where I discovered Yahoo! Auctions Japan and some of Japan's truly unique keyboards.

"ALPSaver" - Yaesu YK-901 Ascii Keyboard - DT post

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ALPS CP10SJ550A Kanji Keyboard - DT post

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JEC Custom Keyboard - Linear White Omron

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Sharp Word Processor Keyboard

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Apple M0116J - Salmon Alps

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Other Finds:
To do / stay tuned :lol:

John Doe

30 Oct 2022, 02:02

:shock: Jealous

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19 Nov 2022, 10:51

what would it take for a 4978 trade¿? :evilgeek: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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23 Nov 2022, 07:50

The Kanji board has enough switches to build at least 4 to 5 keyboards.

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