View Full Version : recycling and/or donating old computers

07-05-2001, 11:21 AM
I constantly accept old computers from friends and family and then cannibalize them. I now have a half dozen computers that I can't really use. Make no mistake - THESE ARE ALL CUTTING EDGE SYSTEMS - or at least around 7 or 8 years ago they were... http://www.PCGuide.com/ubb/smile.gif

My question: Does anyone know of any organizations (local to the Wash DC area) or national that would take donated equipment? Although rarer still, any organizations that actually recycle the computers for precious metals, etc. ?

Web searches have turned up either places that no longer participate in any type of donation and/or recycling program or local shops that are only "willing" to recycle a pentium 2 or better...

Forget local school districts. The 2 I called were polite in telling me they have to pay as it is to have their old crap picked up...

I'm trying my damnest not to pollute the local landfill with additional lead, mecury and whatever else.

07-05-2001, 11:56 AM
Hi Psabi,

I am not too familiar with national computer recycling outfits.

My suggestion would be to take them to Goodwill or something similar. There might be somebody who would like to pick them up for a few bucks and tinker. Maybe that somebody has a computer at home that needs one part that they could find in the old ones you donate. Maybe not. Just an idea.

I know that Pete has oftentimes said he picked up a part or even a whole system at places like Goodwill. They may not be usuable to you, but I'm sure there are lots of people like Pete, me included, that like to find bargains on old systems and parts.


Big Blue 66

Woe is me.

07-05-2001, 12:11 PM
There is always ebay.....

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Celts are the men that heaven made mad, For all their battles are merry and their songs are all sad.

07-05-2001, 01:05 PM
Where I work we are a world-wide company and we just throw out the pc's, if not give them to employees. The monitors have to be picked up by hazardous waste, since they have something in 'em that ain't good for landfill.

"MS-DOS, the only Microsoft OS that doesn't crash, or have bugs. Maybe they should have someone else write Operating Systems for them again."

There are no stupid questions, just stupid people.

07-05-2001, 02:02 PM
With that said, I will be bringing these old PC's to a shop that will "grind them" for free. In any case, thanks for the input. To respond to a few suggestions:

Putting them on ebay would be scary. Not sure what the demand is for 486/33's, 486/66's, and a real "kick ass" 486/120mhz. Although I am sure there are people in underprivileged areas that might want a 120mhz "screamer", the only thought I have is standing at a UPS counter trying to explain that I want to ship a computer to a post office box in Afghanistan...

I don't have any monitors to get rid of - as krayzie said they are considered hazardous and I implore everyone not to dispose of them with their regular trash.

As for the pc's that are going to the grinder - they are stripped now of anything remotely interesting - power supply fans, heat sinks, small HD's, 3.5 floppies - hell I even took the jumpers and screws. Oh well.

Thanks for everyone's input.

07-05-2001, 09:37 PM
Well I know that this isn't any where local to Wash DC, but there are a few places that would be glad to have any type of computer donated. How ever the shipping cost would probably make it not vesible. The Computer Corps (http://computercorps.org/)in Nevada takes donations, has a volunteer trainning program that rebuilds the computer and turns them back out to the comunity for little or at no cost.

07-05-2001, 10:56 PM
The Hampton Roads Coalition for People With Disabilities needs used pentium computer systems and parts, and is only about 4 hrs. from D.C.

contact Barbara Dixon @ 757 461-8007

He thrusts his fists against the posts but still insists he sees the ghosts.

07-06-2001, 12:24 AM
Thank you for the additional suggestions but the pc's are in that big virtual memory in the sky...

Actually, the shop I brought them had no problem recycling some of the towers and the approximately 50 ISA cards that were included. After walking around the shop, I couldn't believe they were charging from 5-20 for various ISA cards...although it didn't look like they were selling too many of them...

The next batch of PC's that that will "drop out" are a few p166 "classic pentiums" that I currently have running NT 4 server (and not doing a bad job of it either, believe it or not). One of the charities I did find would be willing to take them provided I they remain at least a 166 and are usuable.

Paleo Pete
07-06-2001, 09:31 AM
Throwing out ISA cards?

Blasphemy! Sacrilege! Go to your room!


Know how hard it is to find ISA cards around here for the older machines? Especially modems...I don't remember much about what's in the DC area, but I think a few resale shops might take some of that stuff, I picked up a few goodies while I was there last winter. Mostly Manassas though, rather than DC itself. I also have family there, and could probably make arrangements for components to be shipped here at no cost to you. Cases wouldn't work, but any cards, obsolete memory, or motherboards wouldn't be too bad. Arrangements would have to be made privately, of course, rather than on here...

I think a few flea markets are there too, but I'm not sure what they would charge to set up and sell some of the old things, can't get much for them though...

Check and see if you can find a store called Computer Renaissance, they deal in used components, and I think are fairly widely scattered over the northern part of the country.

YOU! Out of the gene pool!
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07-06-2001, 10:30 AM
Like I said ebay is a very viable option check this out...Computers>Desktop Components>General (http://listings.ebay.com/aw/plistings/list/category3666/index.html). Also if you really don't want to go the ebay route ther are several of the "big" used computer parts sellers that are in the northern VA area you may try contacting one of them...they need to get their stuff from somewhere.

Things thrown together as a box lot and sold for one price, limit the area you ship to (like US and Canada or lower 48 only) you'll make a couple of bucks (hopefully), buyer pay the shipping and somebody ends up with stuff to play around with...Like right now I'm looking for parts to put together a lower speed Pentium class system (something between 133 and 400MHZ) as project for my son (teach him a little about building computers)...one man's trash is another man's treasure.

Links list:Computer Links (http://www.fortunecity.com/skyscraper/highrise/11/index.htm)

Celts are the men that heaven made mad, For all their battles are merry and their songs are all sad.

07-06-2001, 10:40 AM
Pete - sorry about the ISA. Didn't realize you were in short supply http://www.PCGuide.com/ubb/smile.gif

I've been to Computer Renaissance before but I don't think they were interested in what I had. I'm about 30 minutes from Manassas (not to far from Dulles airport, and lucky me right by AOL's HQ). Should you really have a desire to go to ISA heaven (or hell depending on your perspective) the shop I "donated" to was in centerville, VA. This is all of 15 minutes from Manassas, next time you are in town.

The ISA modems I dumped were 9600 or 14.4 - I kept the 28.8 and 33.6 ISA modems. I did retain a nice sample of ISA sound, nic (only 10mb), as well as few other keepers. I had to dump the 12 controller cards, and the EISA and VL cards that were bigger than my kitchen table...

Without a question, I retained all memory, processors and heats sinks, etc. Like a swiss army knife, it's always handy to have a DX2/66mhz around http://www.PCGuide.com/ubb/wink.gif

I'm not sure where you host the virtual swap bin but stay in touch and I will gladly hook you up next time you venture to this part of the world...

07-07-2001, 06:01 PM
Pete Here's Lookin' At You. (Or any body else for that matter) I've got what seems like a Ton of that "stuff." Some of the controller cards etc. I had to buy just to get a certain item. As part of a package deal. Wish all this could find itself a home. Would you believe a Next Generation Mboard W/CPU Nx586 model? A 75 Mhz Pent CPU ? Video Cards that were mfg so long ago they have a toggle switch for mono or color? VL cards that are huge enough to paddle the kids' behind with. Wish I knew which part of the D/FW area Pete lived in. Christmas would come early. Hehehehe. Make me some room for some AMD stuff. Give him a couple of P-I systems I don't use anymore. Both 166's. They both need a home. http://www.PCGuide.com/ubb/wink.gif

07-07-2001, 06:08 PM
PSABI --- You ever find that K6+ type Cpu you were lookin' for? Or did ya have to give up and switch to a Duron. Jus' wondering.

07-07-2001, 07:15 PM
RANCH - the spec K6-2+ was a blast from the past.

Didn't get it - gave up quickly after checking the most viable avenues and not having much luck. It didn't take long to realize that it was cost prohibitive as well - especially for the recent dip in prices of proc's.

I still have to meet my friend to swap some stuff - he's giving me a 550 K6-2 that he said did not work in his system. What's strange is I know his system and it should have no problem supporting it. He knows the basics (bus speed, multiplier) but he's not really a hardware junkie. Either there was some other problem or he may have gotten his hands on one of the plus models which would definitely not work in his system.

In any case, I'll let you know when I get my hands on it. I'm still looking to build a new Socket A box but with prices as low as they are, I'll probably shoot for an Athlon over the Duron now.

Paleo Pete
07-07-2001, 11:55 PM
psabi Had another idea too, see if you can contact one of the orginizations that builds and supplies computers to underpriviledged kids, they might have a use for some of the parts, especially cases.

ranchdog: I'm about 3 hours from D/FW out in the sticks. If you want a more specific location it'll be in email, not on here, I try to avoid specifics. Sounds good though, some of that I could use, even the switchable video cards. I have several XT machines that would most likely use them, they sound like CGA at best, just right for the dinosaurs.

YOU! Out of the gene pool!
Note: Please post your questions on the forums, not in my email.

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07-08-2001, 12:15 AM
If you have working systems with modems, community or senior citizens' centers would love to have them.
For some of the people there, email is the only contact they have with family and friends far from home.

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