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David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/23/22 11:06 a.m.

What’s bound to happen if you let something go? That’s right, you’ll eventually need it.

That just happened to us, in fact, with our Garage Rescue Miata.

Let's back up a few decades.

A long, long time ago–specifically in 1994 and 1995–we ran a then-new Mazda Miata R as a magazine project car. We even took it to the …

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z31maniac MegaDork
12/23/22 11:09 a.m.

Don't tell me this! I love throwing stuff I haven't used in a long time.

rslifkin UberDork
12/23/22 11:20 a.m.

I always ask myself a couple of questions before throwing something out, giving it away or selling it. 

"How likely am I to need this again?"

"If I do need it again, how hard or expensive will it be to get another one?"

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
12/23/22 11:29 a.m.

We used to have a really killer surplus store not far away that I used to go to and just buy tons and tons of crap I didn't need then but might need someday. I recently made a keyboard shelf with a set of really high end slides that I got there for $5 each at least 6 years ago and have been tempted to throw out several times since then. It was highly, highly validating.


Colin Wood
Colin Wood Associate Editor
12/23/22 11:34 a.m.

For me, it's less about actual stuff and more about the boxes stuff comes in.

Do I need to keep the box for the smart thermometer? I might if we get a new house.

Appleseed MegaDork
12/23/22 11:38 a.m.

Saving stuff has saved my ass more times than I can count.

docwyte PowerDork
12/23/22 11:48 a.m.

I just dislike clutter.  So unless it's a really hard to source part, I sell it/give it away.  On the corrado I probably should've kept the Schrick VGI manifold, as they're really hard to find now.  However I just don't think I'll own another car with the 12v VR6 again, so there wasn't a point hanging onto it...

VolvoHeretic GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
12/23/22 12:06 p.m.

And pretty soon you fall down that slippery slope and turn into this old guy...

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/23/22 12:08 p.m.
Colin Wood said:

For me, it's less about actual stuff and more about the boxes stuff comes in.

Do I need to keep the box for the smart thermometer? I might if we get a new house.

Saving boxes is a whole 'nother story.

I mean, it's a really good box. 

bludroptop UltraDork
12/23/22 12:27 p.m.

I spent the last 50 years saving stuff.  I hope to spend the next 20 getting rid of it all and not leave a mess when I croak.



Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/23/22 12:35 p.m.

My sister texted a few days ago. She had used some scrapbook decorations she bought back in 2004, and was very happy that she found a use for them and that she still had them when she needed them. 

Then the dagger - "I'm almost like you Rob!"

Olemiss540 HalfDork
12/23/22 12:52 p.m.

Man I am tortured by 2 sides of this.

1. I will not need anything anything in my garage until the day after the garbage truck hauls it away.

2. I also hate clutter and cant think straight unless I have working space around my projects.


Cactus HalfDork
12/23/22 1:52 p.m.

Having just this year dealt with deceased hoarding grandparents, I've got a very fresh perspective on what merits retaining. I still have too much junk, but I have no remorse throwing stuff away anymore.


calteg SuperDork
12/23/22 1:56 p.m.

I've spent the last 2 months throwing away/gifting/selling stuff for way too cheap, just to clear out my garage and attic. Feelsgoodman

300zxfreak Reader
12/23/22 2:17 p.m.

In reply to Olemiss540 :

I'm with you, I just cannot function with crap sitting all around my work area, whatever that might be. Same with lists. Give me a list with a bazillion things to do and I'll just walk away. Give me the condensed version with five or less tasks, and I'll get them done post haste.........

pushrod36 Reader
12/23/22 2:23 p.m.

Essentialism by Greg McKeown convinced me it's ok to shed clutter from my life. I'm happier for it. 

BlueInGreen - Jon
BlueInGreen - Jon UberDork
12/23/22 3:08 p.m.
pushrod36 said:

Essentialism by Greg McKeown convinced me it's ok to shed clutter from my life. I'm happier for it. 

So... I need a shed to put my clutter in so there will be more room in the garage for the clutter relevant to current projects?

Got it.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/23/22 3:13 p.m.

This is dangerous justification for people like us.

You really don't want to know how much random Miata stuff I'm hanging on to just because I might need it - but I installed some of those parts on one of my Miatas just yesterday...

Datsun310Guy MegaDork
12/23/22 3:21 p.m.

Just walk through a flea market next summer and you'll realize how much of your youth you should've kept in a garage.  How much for those old toys?

I struggle with emotional attachment to old stuff - this summer I started purging as it's too much.  Left to Right:

1. My grandmother's box camera - she gave to me in 1975.

2. My first 35mm SLR - bought new in 1976.

3. My dad's 8mm movie camera.  I have the screen and projector that still works along with a box of all his movies and my grandpa's movies.  Want to see some lakes they musky fished at in Canada? 

This is only the beginning......I can't throw this away!


VolvoHeretic GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
12/23/22 3:34 p.m.

In reply to Datsun310Guy :

Everybody needs a hobby collection (collection hobby?). I never expected to start collecting old bottles until I started finding them at a construction excavation.

j_tso Dork
12/23/22 3:46 p.m.
earlybroncoguy1 Reader
12/23/22 5:57 p.m.

Is there a prize for the longest you've held onto some part or piece of junk, but finally found a good use for it?

I had a BMX handlebar (from my teen days) hanging on my garage wall for over 40 years (and several garages). Who knew I was saving it all that time, just to turn it upside down and weld brackets to it, then bolt it to the front of my John Deere lawn tractor as a stylish and functional bumper?

Sorry for huge pic, it's the only one I could find. 

The lift come in handy for cleaning the underside of the mower deck. I don't know why, but that John Deere deck packs up big time with a dirt/grass mix above the blades that solidifies into almost concrete. Have to hammer and chisel it off - hence the pile of crap under the mower.   

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/23/22 6:22 p.m.

In reply to earlybroncoguy1 :

Rock on. What bars were they? (Please don't say Santa Ana GTs...)

Datsun310Guy MegaDork
12/23/22 6:22 p.m.

In reply to earlybroncoguy1 :

In 1970 my dad moved us into a new subdivision but the builder declared bankruptcy and left 50% of the lots unbuilt.  He cleaned out his office/model homes and filled a dumpster.  I decided to go dumpster diving and found this ceramic box and I took it home.  It's actually built very well.  

My Dad had an antique shelf around his basement bar and it hung out until I recovered it when closing down the house.  My wife and I used it this year to seal our Christmas cards.

Over 52 years now?


David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
12/23/22 6:24 p.m.

In reply to Datsun310Guy :

Totally remember those. Can't remember the last time I saw one in person, though. 

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