While most self-respecting hardware enthusiasts turn up their nose to “retro tech” there is something to be said for attempting to keep certain aspects of our computing history alive. As I have mentioned on the Hardware Asylum Podcast there is absolutely no reason to keep old computers around except for what you might need an old computer for. For some an older computer is a way to play original games how they were ment to be played. A good example of this is Quake 1, you can play this game through Steam but it is heavily emulated and getting GL Quake to run is next to impossible. If you are lucky enough to have the original DOS edition it won’t run on modern NT based systems leaving us with a bit of a quandary and is where the retro approach comes in.
When diving into my own stash of computer hardware I found an old Pentium Pro motherboard which got me thinking about putting some old computers back together. I have a pretty good collection of parts in the Hardware Asylum Vault and yet very few of them exist from the time before I started Ninjalane.com. Most of those components were either sold, lost or given away however, I do have a few gems including the aforementioned Pentium Pro board, and a wonderful example of a VLB enabled 486 with a 120Mhz AMD chip.
In finding these old motherboards I started searching around for other gems from my hardware past. Sadly, my stash of AT based computer cases met their end during a cleaning of the Ninjalane Labs. This is rather devastating in retorspect since many were in excellent shape. To this day I still cannot find my Voodoo 1 card and yet I found five Voodoo 2 cards, go figure.
interestingly enough this deficit sparked a “Retro Kick” that not has me searching eBay and other sources for old computer hardware, components and cases. During this search I was reminded of a video I saw for a PC Recycling shop in Seattle that recycles and repurposes electronics instead of blindly sending everything off to the metal scrapers.
Given my new found respect for Retro Tech I just had to check it out.
The road trip would take a little over eight hours each way and would ultimately add over 1000 miles to my odometer but, I was fully onboard. In terms of schedule I needed to plan this trip carefully. RE-PC is closed on Sunday and while I have been known to Cannonball my road trips, I wanted to give myself as much time as possible to check out both stores and do any research as needed.
In the end I decided on a Thursday drive which gave me Friday and Saturday to shop, Sunday to check out Seattle and nice leisurely drive home on Monday.
1565 6th Avenue South
Seattle, WA 98134
600 Andover Park East
Tukwila, WA 98188
I decided to check out the Tukwila location first, this is the location featured in the YouTube video and seemed like a good place to start.