Planning for an equipment move...

From: Christian Fandt <>
Date: Sat Mar 13 10:41:52 1999

Upon the date 10:35 AM 3/13/99 -0500, Megan said something like:
>Well, the day has come... next weekend is when I've arranged to go
>and get the pdp-8s and the pdp-11/34 that I've been making room for
>at home...
>In preparation of the move, I just wanted to ask the list for some
>advice on how to transport so as to have no (or minimum) risk of
>The machines are currently in two tall (6') and one medium (about 4')
>racks. There is a minimum of cabling between the racks, so separating
>them should not be a problem. I'm planning on marking any such cables
>so they can be restored.

Hi Megan,

Recall that big haul of DEC gear I got last summer? I rented a 15-foot
Ryder truck with a liftgate. Worked quite well. A heap of moving blankets
were tossed-into the truck by the company.

Luckily, the truck was packed so doggone tight that no tie-down straps were
needed. Barely got the door pulled down :) Drove a bit over 50 miles like
that with no problems. It was about five thousand lbs. of load.

You should obtain some straps, etc. anyway. Also probably a stack of small
blocks of wood for wheel chocks under the racks could be a good idea. Old
carpet pieces/remnants worked well for me too. We just had new carpeting
put into this house before we moved in and I scrounged a big stack of
pieces just for moving my radio collection last spring. Worked well to set
stuff on and pad standing racks and the big VAXen.

>Obviously, the RL disks will have heads locked down. The other disks
>are Diablo (RK05 equivalents), so how do I lock those down?
>Since I don't have a class two license, I can't get a truck with a
>lift gate, so I was planning on unloaded all the boxes from the racks

Hmmm, in New York State I was able to rent and drive that 15' truck. The
25-footer that was available which had a liftgate was off limits for me. I
needed a CDL or commercial driver's license for that thing. Now in MA,
which I assume is your Home State, the CDL limit is apparently different.

What I'm saying is: A liftgate is a Very Handy Thing (TM). So, may I
suggest you find a friend of a family member or good friend's friend, etc.
who has a CDL? This could be worth your while as far as expended effort.

The BA11-K box, which I assume your 11/34 is in, weighs around 90 lbs with
no modules. Jeez, what a time I had removing mine from a rack in the
garage, lugging it down into the basement and getting the danged thing hung
over half-way up in a 6-foot rack. The RL's were not too bad but a lot of
lifting to move them too. If the 8's are in BA11-sized boxes, those would
be equally a lot of work.

>(CPU, disks, anything else) and placing them on shipping pads, the
>disks with foam pads underneath. I was planning on tipping the racks
>over onto dollies to be wheeled up the ramp into the truck where they
>would travel on their sides, on mats.
>One thing I learned from boating -- If something can possibly end up on
>the deck en route, *put it there* before casting off...

Amen. Gravity is not a good helper sometimes ;)

>Also, in order to make some room, I'm getting rid of a few things
>and wanted to offer them to people on the list. What I have to get
>rid of are two 11/05 chassis, with power supplies, unknown state (I
>got them from someone else in that state), and one 11/10 chassis,
>also in unknown state. They are pretty heavy, so I'm not up to
>lugging them somewhere for shipment. Also, since they are unknown
>state, it might be best for someone local to Framingham, Mass to
>pick them up if interested.
>Finally, if anyone is interested in helping in the move to experience
>the procedure of moving old iron (hows that for a "fence-painting
>come-on"?), please contact me off-list...

Well, if I lived closer I would pitch-in for sure. I'm "experienced" at
moving large DEC and IBM gear plus my boatanchor and military radio
collection (usually no flyweights there as Bill Donzelli and Allison could
attest) because of moving to another house and the DEC haul last summer.
Also, if I lived on the far east edge of NYS, I could rent a 15-foot
liftgate straight job, drive over and help solve part of your dilema.

Good luck and have 'loads' of fun! :-)

Regards, Chris
-- --
Christian Fandt, Electronic/Electrical Historian
Jamestown, NY USA
Member of Antique Wireless Association
Received on Sat Mar 13 1999 - 10:41:52 GMT

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