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Author Topic: Government Surplus  (Read 4192 times)
Ken Fleming
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« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2017, 02:04:40 AM »

Its time to wake the Surplus topic.  Someone needs to establish a contact in Augusta.  The one I had has retired.  I still have access, but due to health problems I don't have the time anymore.  There are still a lot $12 hammers out there (lol).

Base closure and never ending wars have created a lot surplus stuff.  We need to get our hands in the pot!
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Wayne Laepple
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« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2017, 02:50:20 AM »

I think this is probably a dead horse, Ken. I have also touted the value of government surplus to various folks to no avail. Perhaps there is some concern that the non-flanged equipment collection will be larger than the vehicles on rails!
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Stephen Piwowarski
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« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2017, 04:06:58 PM »

Perhaps, if there was a "wish list" of items that would be helpful, people could keep their eye out for things. Being signed up with an account is good, but we also would need to know what to get. It is hard to know what to look for when it is unclear what the needs are. Wayne, you also make a good point about space- there is only so much and we need to use it as efficiently as possible. So, good monetary value alone does not always make something a good value for the museum- there are other factors to consider.

Thanks for letting us know Ken,

Steve
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Ira Schreiber
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« Reply #18 on: May 13, 2017, 09:46:55 PM »

I,too. had the same frustration. I signed up and found a lack of useful items as well as no real museum support.
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Mike Fox
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« Reply #19 on: May 13, 2017, 10:36:47 PM »

The problem, I mean the real problem is that we are a volunteer organization. So expecting someone to give up their paying job to attend is less than fair.

Honestly, I do check the site from time to time. I just don't post my findings here. Basically, the surplus has gone from good stuff to "we are tired of fixing it" stuff. And the stuff is usually priced beyond what we can afford.
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Mike
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Paul Uhland
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« Reply #20 on: May 13, 2017, 11:48:40 PM »

Not to be in "I told you so" mode, but  getting another 40-foot container eventually might be helpful.
IIRC, 2926 eventually bought seven, paid ~$3000 each. One of them serves as a machine shop.
Since I've joined two? years ago, WW&F is noticably expanding , with the need for  more secure, weather-tight stowage probably sooner than expected.
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Paul Uhland
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« Reply #21 on: May 14, 2017, 02:14:26 AM »

Actually, still room for more in the container.
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Mike
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Joe Fox
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« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2017, 05:28:02 PM »

We already have an abundance of surplus items at the museum. The big problem, and I am glad we are finally stepping away from, is that for years "stuff" accumulated in a fashion of well we MAY be able to use this 20 years from now so let's keep it. It is nice to see the place look less like a junk yard now and more like a museum once more.

As a museum standpoint it is critical to think about stuff we really need and the overall appearance. If the place looks like an eyesore visitors may be less likely to go for a train ride. But if the grounds are organized, well presented, etc it makes a much better presentation as a whole.
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Ira Schreiber
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« Reply #23 on: May 14, 2017, 07:45:31 PM »

Having visited many operations throughout the U.S., Joe is absolutely correct.
A good example of how not to present is located just over an hour south of the WW&F.
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Bob Holmes
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« Reply #24 on: May 15, 2017, 12:58:06 AM »

Per Joe, let's have a master plan for the West Yard that takes those several comments about "presentation" into consideration....

Bob
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Stephen Piwowarski
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« Reply #25 on: May 15, 2017, 04:27:26 AM »

if the grounds are organized, well presented, etc it makes a much better presentation as a whole.

Well said Joe! Though there probably isn't concrete research to back this, I believe the things you mention are at the top of the list for how people determine how much time and money they invest in a place, and what impression they leave with. Like mom always said, first impressions are the most important ones, so they ought to be good.

Steve
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Mike Fox
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« Reply #26 on: May 15, 2017, 12:08:24 PM »

I approached the board last year about the parking lot, And the desire to organize it. Last fall we did what we could. It still needs some work. We need a permanent display for the #9 parts, as well as getting rid of the machinery no longer needed. A neat and tidy first impression will be a lasting impression.

Back on the government surplus topic, if someone would like to take on researching the surplus, please do so. We have found most items are previewed online, some just a list, others with pictures.
Just remember, shipping is expensive. The closer to Maine the items are, the better chance we have of getting a good deal on shipping.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 12:15:04 PM by Mike Fox » Logged

Mike
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James Patten
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« Reply #27 on: May 15, 2017, 03:06:50 PM »

Also remember that we don't typically have much money lying around that isn't assigned to a specific project.  We do have an "opportunities fund" but it usually doesn't have a lot in it.  So plenty of notice is good (months), or finding out about it while the Annual Fund drive is going on (when we're much more likely to have "spare money") is better.  Best of all would be to have it show up as part of the goals for the Annual Fund drive, which usually gets identified in July.
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Ken Fleming
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« Reply #28 on: May 16, 2017, 09:30:30 PM »

I my real point is to have someone from the museum open an dialogue with August Surplus office.  Just a friendly call every now and then.  Invite whomever they are to visit the museum to see what we do.  There may only an odd ball items of interest to us, but we'll never know if just sit on our hands.  If wishes were fishes, we would have us fry.  You can't see if you don't look!
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Mike Fox
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« Reply #29 on: May 16, 2017, 10:22:26 PM »

They had a hi-railed back-hoe up there last year, and was only available to a railroad based organization. We had no money so we never bid. I think it went to Downeast Scenic.
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Mike
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