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Dumpster Dives

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by mink, Aug 20, 2009.

  1. speedtool
    Joined: Oct 15, 2005
    Posts: 2,541


    Not a dumpster dive, but once found a '60's Fender Jazzmaster sticking out of a 55 gallon trash barrel when cruising a back alley. Fixed the broken parts, buffed it out and restrung it. Sold it for $250 to a kid taking guitar lessons at the music store I was working at (way back in the 80's).
  2. c57heaven
    Joined: Feb 22, 2008
    Posts: 538


    I garbage picked a fiberglass one piece front end for a 55 chevy.
    Apparently it had been outside upside down as it was leave stained inside. no cracks, never mounted. It was only about 1 1/2 miles from my house. Now with no pickup or trailer to haul it we had to figure a way to get this thing to my house. My friend brings his mini van over. Won't fit inside. He says just put it on top. No tie downs though. He places it on the top of his van, headlights facing the rear, overlaying the whole van. We couldn't go over 15 mph without this thing lifting off as we each held a side with our hands.:eek:
    We still laugh about this escapade. Sold it for $150.
  3. lostforawhile
    Joined: Mar 23, 2008
    Posts: 4,160


    Yep anything by dirt devil, I know how to clean em and I'll still leave the junk there, who was the idiot who made a 90 degree turn in right before the bag? I get all kinds of stuff, found some really nice princess chine for my wife,full set wrapped in newspaper and in boxes, found out every piece is super high dollar, bunch of nice 70's corningware too the good heavy stuff, car parts,electronics, store displays you name it.
  4. bushman
    Joined: Nov 17, 2008
    Posts: 27


    I just found a pair of 50s era TEE NEE trailer fenders at local dump. Didn't realize that boat trailers were not that common until after WW2 until I Googled for info on these neat looking vintage fenders. When first saw them in metal scrap pile I thought they belonged to an Indian type motorcycle.
  5. Come to think of it, one place I worked for a while about 10 years ago, I took the cardboard out and here in the top of the dumpster (they might have been in the cardboard one even, I forget) is three big wrenches. Snap Ons. Like 1 inch, 1 1/4 inch box and open ends, that had been custom altered for some use - heated and bent to be offset by about an inch on the box end. They still hang in the basement here - I don't think I've ever had to use them, but better I have them and not need them, than have left them in the trash. And the offset lets them hang up nice.

    Even at Harbor Freight a wrench that size is good for at least $10 by itself.

    Heck, I have some dumb stuff people put out for trash here where I live now. A nice set of diamond-plate running boards that fit 73-87 Chevy pickups. A set of car ramps and a pair of those cheesy jackstands that after I picked up I read up on how dangerous they are and have never used. A stereo with a working 8-track player in it. I even picked up the tail end of a garage sale and mixed it into the stuff I take to the flea markets, and I sold a few things out of it.

    And at one of the car shows this year a guy trashed a bunch of '68 Toronado parts - a dash cluster, power window master switch, a rear power window switch, glovebox door, and some other bits. I sold the master P/W switch on eBay for $15 and the radio out of the cluster at the Nats for $20. He says to me as he throws it out that there's no market for it... I'm thinking "of course there's no market at Norwich, I've never ever seen a Toronado at this show" ... but I know a Toronado guy with a Stude/Packard V8 apart under a bench in his shop I'm thinking I should call and see if I can swap the rest of this stuff towards.

    But I've been a trashpicker since I was old enough to walk down the street by my house. When I was a little kid, junk day was like having a second Christmas in April. To this day I use a cart - a Cook's shopping cart someone cut the basket off and put a piece of plywood on the bottom - as a utility cart for my winter train show stuff. I think I've had that 15 years now myself.

    I know a girl who used to collect Barbie dolls, so here I am one night (used to do a lot of snooping at night) and here's one sticking out of a box. My sister had them too so I knew enough this one was funny - it was hollow plastic and maybe 25% bigger than usual. It also looked like it should have come in a set with like an Abusive Husband Ken, but.. I picked it and sent it to her. Come to find out it was some rare issue that was worth a good buck even in ratty shape, some antique dealer told her $100-$150 I think.

    One man's trash is another man's treasure.
  6. Sir Woosh
    Joined: Dec 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,273

    Sir Woosh

    Recently found an SUV bumper cover laying along the road. Made a lightweight bumper and bottom corner for the fender in the rec room. The wall clock on the fireplace was trash too. Just painted it and put a new motor in it. Juke box being made from door blanks set out for trash and some leftover 55 Pontiac hood strips. Fridge was free just to get it out of the guys basement.

    Attached Files:

  7. Pulled a fairly nice deck lid for a model A out of a dumpster once. Wish I still had it.
  8. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 4,013

    from central NY

    going by Lowes today, the dumpster is sporting a blue wire shelving rack of some sort, Maybe a Kobalt tools merchandiser, gonna check it out tomorrow early AM.
  9. brandonwillis
    Joined: Aug 28, 2008
    Posts: 291

    from Tucson AZ

    i furnished my girlfriends entire apartment out of a dumpster.

    (my old shop was across from a mini roll away place they where cool with raiding shit before they dumped it)

    some old lady died and they threw everything away because they said it smelled like dead people. Maybe it did in the house, but nothing smelled bad. Took everything but the bed, cause thats what she died on.
  10. Lowes and Home Depot both seem to trash metal displays and shelving on a fairly regular basis. Any time a mall store gets remodeled, stuff ends up in the trash too.

    And of course they tell me a guy could start his own flea market stash from scratch just by picking up the leftovers after Carlisle or Hershey.
  11. 52style
    Joined: Mar 22, 2009
    Posts: 326


    best thing i ever got out of the trash was a scwhinn stingray grey ghost

    sold it for $300 later found out it was the rarest one and worth thousands
  12. The Hop Walla
    Joined: Aug 19, 2007
    Posts: 427

    The Hop Walla
    from Dallas

    When I was a kid I used to visit a particular dumpster behind a pawn shop. It almost always had old tool boxes with old tools still in them. I guess they took entire tool boxes on pawn, cleaned out the new stuff, and then tossed the rest of the box in the trash.

    We're talking some sweet old stuff here.
  13. vintagedrags
    Joined: Aug 24, 2008
    Posts: 314

    from Erie, PA

    A set of four keystone raiders. Dumpster diving is a great way to score, but to many people already knew that.
  14. junk fiend
    Joined: Sep 16, 2008
    Posts: 430

    junk fiend

    lots of bycicles, motorcycle parts, and a early 70s pro swallom skateboard in mint condition, im still waiting to find a old slot car box filled with cars in the trash, that would be awsome. i find all the best stuff abandoned out in the desert though iv found 4 dirt bikes so far
  15. MrkCat37
    Joined: Jan 15, 2009
    Posts: 62


    Found a complete Yamaha Stereo with a 1000 watt amp. Made a nice little garage radio. Found some original Empi 5 spokes and a pair of sbc heads. Heads were in great shape just dirty.
  16. torchmann
    Joined: Feb 26, 2009
    Posts: 787

    from Omaha, Ne

    2 dozen 8' x 3' 2" wood core doors from a hospital remodel. made many workbenches self and for friends.
    full pickup and trash trailer load 6' high of 4' x 6'-7' 1-1/2" Styrofoam bead-board insulation from air products. it was all production odd ends. we cut it into rips and insulated my dad's garage and parts of the house (after pulling down the plaster)

    found a box of shop towels and a handy 1970's hand held am/fm transistor radio with great sound that was excellent when out in the garage.

    brother found a chrome late 70's/early1980's mongoose bmx with aluminum web rims and spray painted black.

    I found a Tiacara bmx frame (longer than Mongoose), set of big yellow tuffs copped a set of rare non-metric long arm alloy 3 piece cranks from a european road bike and bought a super goose gooseneck with alloy bars and found a forged spring steel astahbula fork from another road bike that was tough as any tubular bmx fork. It was an adult sized bmx, wish I still had it. will never have those parts again truely 1 of a kind and mostly found at the dump.
    That kit would fly on the flats from the big sprocket and crank up any hill because you could really stand on the cranks and get a full stroke. I remember some of the hills around the neighborhood here 6-8% grade you could crank the front wheel off the ground while leaning over the bars going up the hill. delivered alot of papers with that bike
  17. Okie Pete
    Joined: Oct 29, 2008
    Posts: 3,328

    Okie Pete

    The local Co-op got a new manager. He is on a clean up mission. I found 2 Co-op oil tin signs, a 5 gal fuel bucket that was carried on a fuel truck. A tin no smoking sign. A Anco windshield wiper box on wheels that would set on the drive with a guage in it to test the down pressure of the wiper arms. It was a good day of diveing.
  18. Lil' Billy
    Joined: Dec 9, 2006
    Posts: 1,089

    Lil' Billy
    from Georgia

    I haven't gotten anything. All the auto parts stores lock their dumpsters around here.
  19. turney33
    Joined: Aug 7, 2009
    Posts: 110

    from pasco,wa

    found aluminum intake still bolted to a mess-up aluminum heads! it turned out that they used to be bolted to an aluminum buick 8,recycled what was left of the heads for some beer money, beer! the intake i keep most of my spare bees in.
  20. Lightning
    Joined: Mar 29, 2008
    Posts: 91

    from N. Nevada

    Up in the little old public dump in N. BF East Nev. was a complete '62 Corvair station wagon - got it for $20 - put in a batt., new gas and it ran.
  21. ApacheA
    Joined: Aug 13, 2009
    Posts: 9


    Hell, can't say I've found much in the way of cool stuff, aside from a HUGE Kenny Rogers wall clock, but my friend found(then sold to me) a false arm used for practicing blood transfusions. He found it in a police station's dumpster with the evidence tag still attached.

    Two weeks ago I did find a Huffy Sante Fe at the dump. All it needed ws air in the tires and the thing soars...

    Cool topic...
  22. Well I was thinking of the partially eaten eclair, but I guess it could have also been a Cinnamon Babka.;)
  23. onlychevrolets
    Joined: Jan 23, 2006
    Posts: 2,307


    so you bought the arm?
  24. My buddy and I found about 3 years worth of Playboy Magazines in a dumpster behind a body shop - SCORE!! (we were about 13 at the time).

    I also found an old MG steering wheel in the trash - used it on my go-kart and then sold it later for 100 bucks!
  25. Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Joined: Apr 20, 2008
    Posts: 4,148

    Hot Rods Ta Hell

  26. Found a Harley Hummer by the dumpster at Acme one night when I was 14- my dad and I rolled it home and had it in the basement for years... until he gave it to someone:(
  27. hugh m
    Joined: Jul 18, 2007
    Posts: 2,142

    hugh m
    from ct.

    We do alot of industrial/lab work, found vacuum pumps, glasspack mufflers, ww2 oxygen tanks, casters, cabinets, tables, misc. tooling, it's really amazing the stuff that gets into dumpsters. Just got a pallett jack and a new gas fired fireplace stove. Good thing I have learned not to look too often,because there is always something.
  28. 1950ChevySuburban
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,188

    Member Emeritus
    from Tucson AZ

    Great thread MINK! Used to dive at the K-Mart, got 2 electric handi-scooters and lots of shelving.
    Fixed up one scooter, put an Optima in it, and sold it for $400! That was nice
  29. 1950ChevySuburban
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,188

    Member Emeritus
    from Tucson AZ

    When I was a kid, there was a JC Penney service center near the house. We'd dive there, got 3 busted Walkmans, made 2 good ones out of them. This was around 1980 when having a cassette Walkman was the cat's ass!
  30. Scott F.
    Joined: Aug 9, 2006
    Posts: 964

    Scott F.

    A virtually brand new Torin Big Red? (I think) bench top parts washer. Cleaned off about 5 years worth of dust and it works and even looks like new!


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