Saved from the garbage!

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Thomas Dooher
Posts: 61
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2012 7:18 pm

Saved from the garbage!

Post by Thomas Dooher »

My part-time job on weekends involves e-waste collection as a fundraising process for non-profits. I see some interesting things come through. The boss says we can tag things we are interested in and he may let us have it. I have obtained a few amps to fix, etc. About a year ago, a kid walked in to an event to see what we were doing. He must have noticed my Fender ball cap, because he came in, asking if we recycled broken guitars. He had an older black Squier Strat. Boss said I could take and keep for myself. Issue was broken connections and cold solder joints. I 'traded' space on my guitar rack with a white Hohner Rockwood Pro Strat (which, for the $50 I paid for it was a pretty decent guitar, all in all. Better than the more recent Squiers, by far) and donated the Hohner to my Scouts December Silent Auction. I have refurb'd 5 guitars and a couple of amps for the auction over the years. Big hit with the scouts and siblings, sometimes not so much with the parents.

So, a couple weeks back, working an event in Gilroy. Lady comes in with a bunch of stuff, including a beat up Suzuki Telecaster copy. Has some gouges, dings, is missing tone knob and 1st string ferrule. Kids outgrew their desire to play guitar. She asked if I wanted the amp, came back with an Epiphone amp. Tagged for the boss to review if could have for myself. He approved later that week. I get it, go to GC to get ferrules and strings. Replace all the ferrules with Fender ones, strung it up, took old tone knob from strat out of my box o' old random parts. Strummed unplugged and was amazed at how resonant the guitar was. Great tone unplugged. Plugged in, surprisingly nice. Realy has that tele tone. I was originally going to get an different neck (has funky shaped headstock, want more tele-ish one), or bite the bullet and make one. Wanted to get maple/maple vs the maple/rosewood(or what ever dark, grainy wood). My brief research list the STL-10NL as having a maple/maple even though the pic shown has the rosewood fingerboard. How, I hesitate, since it sounds so good the way it is. This may be my 'go to' single coil guitar for fun and games.

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Jim McConkey
Posts: 938
Joined: Thu Jan 05, 2012 4:00 pm
Location: Way north of Baltimore, MD

Re: Saved from the garbage!

Post by Jim McConkey »

It is amazing what people throw out. A couple years back, we were going somewhere, and all of a sudden my other half says "stop now!" She got out, ran back to a trash can we just passed, and pulled out a generic acoustic guitar. I repaired a few minor problems, replaced a couple missing strings, and we sold it at a yard sale for charity a couple weeks later for $50. My first electric was made out of a neck salvaged out of a garbage can by a friend of my parents who thought I might be able to do something with it. One man's junk...
MIMForum Staff - Way North of Baltimore

Bob Hammond
Posts: 629
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2012 4:13 pm

Re: Saved from the garbage!

Post by Bob Hammond »

Congratulations! There ain't much a thing better than a Good Save from the dumpster, and maybe moreso if it's an instrument that plays wonderful even if it's been abused as much as Willie Nelson's Trigger.

I got a great true story that I'd like to tell. Back about in '85, one summer day my father-in-law came home from his job as a school custodian, and he mentioned that the music teacher had cleaned out the bandroom closet. Hmm! So I went over that night and dived into the dumpster. I retrieved some dinged up brass and winds in cases -a tuba, a couple of french horns, a couple of clarinets, and the Grand Prize was an old oboe in a beat-up case. When I got home, the Lady-Wife was >thrilled<. It was 'Her Oboe', the one that my wife had played throughout highschool. Wow, I was a hero! It needed some help, but it was thrown out because no kid could try to squeak a note out of it. I gave away the other instruments, and the oboe was repadded and touched up here and there, and has been at least tooted by the next generation.

Matthew Lau
Posts: 515
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2012 2:03 am

Re: Saved from the garbage!

Post by Matthew Lau »

That's awesome!

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Karl Wicklund
Posts: 155
Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 12:42 am
Location: NW Wisconsin

Re: Saved from the garbage!

Post by Karl Wicklund »

Nice. I've saved tools and instruments and who knows what else from the garbage. Pulled a handsaw out from under a pile of manure once. Also got an unusual french horn from the ex-wife of a band director cleaning house. Salvage is sometimes unreasonably satisfying.
Kaptain Karl

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david frassetto
Posts: 78
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 2:55 pm
Location: Milwaukee WI

Re: Saved from the garbage!

Post by david frassetto »

Ten years ago I was driving home from the in-laws house and saw an organ sitting by the curb. I got out to check it out and to my suprize it was a Hammond A106 (basically a B3 with built in speakers). The speakers were gone but all the tubes were there and the rest looked intact. I knocked on the door and when the home owner came I asked if he was throwing the organ out. He said yes. but it didn't work. I said "that's ok I can fix it".

I called a friend with a truck (it weighs close to 350 lbs.) and a couple of hours later it was here at home. As we were loading it the home owner came out with the bass pedals (bonus!).

After putting in some 12 in. speakers and checking it out I found the problem. The on/ off switch was broken! A trip to Radio Shack and $1.95 for a spst switch and it fired right up!! What a beautiful sound! It now sits proudly in the dining room next to the Leslie 122 speaker that was also saved from the trash many years earlier (i used it for guitar), but that's another story. And so is the violin that my oldest daughter still plays today (found in the trash in January 1977 on a 17 below 0 night).
Lap steel fanatic

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