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Author Topic: Government Surplus  (Read 4421 times)
Ed Lecuyer
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« on: January 22, 2009, 03:20:18 AM »

MODERATORS NOTE:
Government Surplus has been converted from the pre-July 2008 WW&F Discussion Forum.
Some formatting may have been removed or modified from the original postings that appear quoted in this topic.
Information contained within this post may be superseded by more recent postings and conversations.

slooper wrote:
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This morning I took the liberty of contacting the State of Maine Surplus Property Office and requested the forms for enrollment in the surplus donation program be sent to the Alna PO Box.  I spoke with Michelle and directed her to the museum's website as a matter of introducing the organization.  She looked at the site as we talked.  I explained our basic mission, wants and needs.  By the way, she says she'll be down to ride the train.  Work with her (#3 on the phone menu).
This will be the second railroad museum that I have set in the GSA system.  The last time I obtained 40,000 gallons of oil (that was just the first year) for our oil burning engines, at $.05 a gallon, two ALCO RS-1's from the D.O.T. (free) and access to the state surplus yard, where we found two Worthington steam pumps, flood lights, track tools and more (all free).
The Federal Government Surplus Program provides free or at minimum cost just about anything an organization can use.  After enrollment, all it takes is someone to surf the list of surplus items for useful items.  The Federal Stock Code system prime numbers for us:
2230   Right-of-Way Construction and Maintenance Equipment, Railroad
2250   Track Material, Railroad
6330   Railroad Signal and Warning Devices
Plus many others for tools, etc.
State of Maine Address:
STATE OF MAINE
STATE AGENCY FOR FEDERAL SURPLUS PROPERTY
85 Leighton Road
Augusta, ME 04333
PH: (207) 287-2923
FAX: (207) 287-7861

James Patten replied:
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I'm betting nobody finds 5-cents/gal oil nowadays...
FYI I work for the State, and currently work near Leighton Road, so if that helps with communication or facilitating a visit, let me know.

Mike Fox replied:
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Slooper, thanks for taking the time for this. I like the surplus idea if we can make it work.
And with James' coment, the only thing you can find related to 5 cents a gallon for oil is the discount if you pay cash or within 30 days.
Mike

Dave Buczkowski replied:
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And don't forget that we could use a new front end loader and maybe an excavator. A dump truck might not be a bad thing either. and how about a Landoll with cab!
Dave

Ira Schreiber replied:
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I brought up this very subject several years ago, as I have used Government Surplus, at other venues.
I was rebuffed in my efforts as it was "not worth the effort". I feel these individuals have receeded into the woods and the climate at the WW&F is more positive.
Ira Schreiber

Mike Fox replied:
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I agree with Dave as far as the loader goes. As for anything else, unless it is extremely useful, other mechanical things used occasionally might become mechanically burdensome. Excavators are nice but costly when they break.
One thing that might come in handy a lot would be a little Skid-Steer (bobcat) with a bucket and a set of forks. The forks would come in handy loading and unloading things, ties especially, around Sheepscot. I have worked with these machines a lot and can be very usefull.
Mike

slooper replied:
Quote
I am glad to see the interest in obtaining Government Surplus.
The process is simple.
1) File the application
2) Get approved
3) Appoint a representative to deal with State Office directly (funds could be involved for shipping). Someone whom can sign for items and "sign the check", if required.
4) Develop contact(s) at State Surplus office (perhaps an invite for office staff to come see and ride)
5) Develop "Want List" with State Office
6) Provide an e-mail address or phone number for members to contact representative, if they have a lead on surplus not directly in State Office, e.g. found on GSA or DOD website. A tip line.  We have members all over the country, who may knowledge of local surplus or could look at it for us.
Once in the "system", we will have a higher priority in obtaining surplus before it goes to public auction.  But, don't over look the public auctions of surplus.  I have overridden items slated for auction.  There is a "pecking order" on who gets a shot at surplus.  Its based on the calendar.  Time becomes of essence.  The State Surplus Office should be able to get the lists before the public.
Beware, some government surplus can be pure junk.  However, depending on the rules that apply to the transfer of the surplus items, it could be "trade" goods for something else.  Also, maybe two or more  to make good one out of.
The Federal Government sells smaller items by the lot.  Many of these lots are large tri-wall boxes with mixed Federal Stock Codes, with errors.  Make sure what we obtain and not useful to us can be disposed of as WE see fit, i.e. sell, barter or toss. and have to keep for some time period before junking.  The lots are a great way of getting the parts to fix equipment obtained from the system or anything else.  The Government almost always buys spare part kits for equipment they buy.  Big things are nice, but small stuff like nuts, bolts, washers, nails, gasket material, hand tools, valves, etc., all can save us money.  My rule used to be, if there was $50 worth of useful items in the lot, I'd take the whole lot. Then we would  "high grade" it and get rid of the rest.  I have seen lots marked with FSC's for aircraft parts have twenty high pressure steam valves in the bottom.  That's why it pays to dig in these lots.
As base closures and realignment continue there will be large amounts of equipment out there.

Allan Fisher replied:
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All of the items in your last post are why we haven't done anything to date.
All these good ideas - but so few to do the work. - like filling out the application , being the agent, going to the surplus yards - keepng an eye on it .
Like any organization - those who are currently carrying a lot of the water are trying to keep their heads above water.
WE NEED PEOPLE TO VOLUNTEER TO DO THESE THINGS.
If this was a church - the minister would say, "wonderful idea - how about seeing that it gets done.

Ira Schreiber replied:
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Allan,
Although I am "away" half the year, I would be happy to volunteer for this.
I have done a number of Federal purchases and I am familiar with the system. Slooper's suggestion is the way to go. Just one $50 part in a lot for $25 is a bargain and the rest...well....
I already am on the "railroad" Federal Surplus lists. Usually nothing of interest but I did send you the notice last week on the lot of 80# rail.
Ira Schreiber
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Ed Lecuyer
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« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2012, 12:00:06 AM »

Its been some time since Government Surplus has been an active topic.  In fact long enough for my contact in Augusta have retired.  With wars winding down, there seems to be a lot of heavy equipment around as surplus.  Its time for someone local to start doing some searching.  For example RowMow #2 could be a surplus tractor with bush hog.  There seems to be a lot of 34 ton capacity trailers out there.  Maybe a "new" loader.  Computers, tools, some rail, buildings, building material, etc, etc.  I can help guide someone on which web sites to use.  I have Maine's password (given to me) for doing searches of DOD, GSA and most other agencies that have surplus.

We need to re-establish our contact in August and become proactive.

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Mike Fox
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« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2012, 01:39:06 AM »

We have recently been given new cards to the State of Maines surplus store. The one day I hads time to stop, I drove right by not knowing for sure where it was. But now I know.

Other things we could benefit from from a surplus deal,
Larger Air compressor. A 185 model has worked exceptionally well in the past.
Gas powered Hydraulic Hi-flow pump and hydraulic motor.
A decent front end loader or a loader/backhoe.
A small excavator, with rubber tracks.
Tractor with a mower or bush hog is a good idea.

This list is only a partial list, and by no means in any order of importance.
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Mike
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Ira Schreiber
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« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2012, 01:58:21 AM »

Are there funds available for surplus purchases?
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James Patten
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« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2012, 12:18:14 PM »

Are there funds available for surplus purchases?

Not really.  But now is a great time to identify items and discover costs, and get them to me before the July board meeting so that I can present it as part of a list of possible fund drive request items.
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Ken Fleming
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« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2012, 11:07:25 PM »

I did a GSA search today and found nothing useful to us closer than PA and VA.  Then only trucks and trailers.  

I did find a total of 70,000 plus linear feet (13+ miles) of railroad (4 areas) in Aiken, SC.  Smallest is 5000 ft. It includes rails, ties, ballast, etc.  They want it all removed.  Do we have a big track gang willing to go to SC.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2012, 01:26:36 PM by Ken Fleming » Logged
John Kokas
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« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2012, 12:07:53 PM »

There may be a closer opportunity for rail available to the Museum.  There is a stretch of old siding at the Bangor Airport (old Dow AFB) that runs next to the perimeter road up close to the GE turbine systems buildings.  This siding has not been used in decades and can no longer be used due to runway modifications which severed the ROW.  There is probably at least 1/2 mile of track which looks to be in the 80-90 lb/yd size.  Although its not what we need for the museum, it may be a good source of rail to be used to trade for the size we need.  Control of the property should be the Bangor Airport Authority.
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James Patten
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« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2012, 02:42:14 PM »

I am putting together a list of things for the Board to consider for the Annual Fund Drive.  I can't promise the Board will spring for anything in particular, but this is a good time to get something we need on the list.  Please contact me back channel with your item and an approximate cost.
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Ted Miles
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« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2012, 06:44:16 PM »

folks,
         the surplus is a great thing for non-profits. don't foorget that there is a Federal  Surplus list also.

in my work at the Western Railway Museum i have seen everything from an air conditioner for the Archives wing to most recently a front end loader still in military greet working at the museum.

There is a thread going for building a section house. The surplus is a good place to look for the structural lumber for the building. The shingles are less likely; not many government buildings have cedar shingles on them.

Ted Miles
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Mike Fox
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« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2012, 01:40:57 AM »

I stopped by the State Surplus yard today on the way by. They were closed due to the holiday. I was looking for anything of interest, particularly a compressor or trailer and found nothing like that. Just a bunch of vehicles of various sizes, half a dozen graders and front end loaders, and a backhoe. No telling what was inside because they were closed.
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Mike
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« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2012, 02:42:44 AM »

Ahhh, front end loaders are useful I've heard...
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Dylan Lambert
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« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2012, 02:19:51 AM »

Ahhh, front end loaders are useful I've heard...
Doesn't matter what you use them for, they're always handy! We normally use my grandmother's Cub Cadet/Yanmar EX3200 for yard work. My father has found another use for it as well - crane. Around here, my father stores the extra boilers his company cuts up for scrap (he works in HVAC). I've loaded and unloaded boilers into trucks, moved the cut up remains and have exposed nastily sized bee's nests hiding within the insulation of one boiler that has yet to be cut up. It just comes down to a question of whether you want to switch out the bucket for something like forks or a plow....
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Dave Buczkowski
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« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2012, 02:36:04 AM »

Dylan,
A volunteer brought his loader all the way from Massachusetts for the work weekend. He did an unbelieveable amount of work with it. It was my attempt at some irony.
Dave
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Dylan Lambert
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« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2012, 02:59:53 AM »

Dylan,
A volunteer brought his loader all the way from Massachusetts for the work weekend. He did an unbelieveable amount of work with it. It was my attempt at some irony.
Dave
* Facepalm  Embarrassed
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Ken Fleming
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« Reply #14 on: December 31, 2016, 05:25:52 AM »

I went back over "Surplus" topic and saw that there appears there has been no activity since 2012.  To remind members we are approved for getting "stuff" from the State of Maine and the Federal (GSA) Government at little or  no cost.  I still have the password for Maine and GSA.  We should be looking for stuff on a regular basis. I have seen surplus bridges like the Iron bridge. Miles of track (x-ammo depot) and switches. Trucks, trailers and flat large enough to span Trout Brook and built to carry two Abrams tanks.  The contact info is in first message in this topic or call me (717-355-0917).
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