The Vintage Mac Museum Attic

As many collectors know there’s usually more to a collection than what gets displayed. Space constraints play the largest role, as does redundancy of items and an often seemingly bottomless pile of new stuff to go through. Rarely seen are my systems not on display and the large quantities of spare parts necessary to keep one-to-two-decade old machines running.

VMM-Back-Room-smThe VMM currently takes up all or part of 3 rooms in my house. The displayed collection lives in one of the bedrooms; this contains the working equipment, Mac memorabilia, framed artwork and related items. Room two (shown left) is a small office I’m using as a large storage closet.

In here live many peripherals, books, software and more beige boxes. These include some Macintosh clones (PowerComputing, Motorola Starmax), a PowerMac 6500, a non-working Color Classic, and an original Apple ImageWriter (with ThunderScan). A few drawers hold adapters and cables, and a closet shoe rack makes an excellent storage shelf for hard drives and NuBus/PCI expansion cards. The G4 towers on the floor are awaiting teardown.

Other than a few compact Macs and PowerBooks, I’ve found that space constraints prevent keeping multiple spare systems around intact. With a few exceptions I now tend to keep one working model in good cosmetic condition, and critical items for repairing that system when needed: logic boards, CPU daughtercards, power supplies, screens (for all-in-one systems), floppy drives, hard drives, CD/DVD drives, custom sleds/mounts, interconnect cables, etc.. External cases and leftover mechanical parts get recycled or disposed of. Empty (reassembled) shells from a Mac Plus or SE/30 make good gifts for kids and other Mac geeks.

In a Major Step Forward each model now gets its own shelved box in the attic (photo below) – a MUCH easier system than digging through a bag or box of old stuff and trying to remember if this unlabeled power supply belongs to a IIci or a Quadra. It took a few years but now I should be able to better manage growth via the addition of shelving and boxes. At least, to a point.

There are boxes here for the Mac 512k/Plus, SE/30, IIci/Quadra 840av, 9600 (two boxes), iMac G3, PowerMac G4, PowerBook 170, 540c, 2400c/3400c, Wallstreet, and Pismo. One box contains a Duo 230 which I acquired recently and don’t have room to display at present. You can also see some spare monitors (CRT and LCD), an Apple Color Display “Tilt & Swivel” stand, more Ruby iMacs (I love that color), old Mac carry bags, and several boxes of mice and keyboards. As I acquire more crap I’ll begin to forget what’s even in some of them – then this will truly be a Vintage Mac Attic!


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