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Re: New Ballast - Geek Scrounging

Original poster: "Christopher Boden by way of Terry Fritz <twftesla-at-qwest-dot-net>" <chrisboden-at-hotmail-dot-com>

>Original poster: "Gregory Hunter by way of Terry Fritz 
><twftesla-at-qwest-dot-net>" <ghunter31014-at-yahoo-dot-com>
I didn't walk away with a free substation like
>the geeks seem to be able to do, but I'm well pleased
>with my own modest little victory in the fight for
>low-budget coiling.

Right place, right time is all :) There's a LOT of things out there that I 
think most coilers overlook. The main reason that we're able to get these 
goodies is that scrounging is a contact sport. Most coilers out there are 
operating solo, plus you have day-jobs, families....lives.
For me (and a core group of about 10 people) the Group is our life. I don't 
have a day job, the Group isn't a job for me, it's a lifestyle. Because of 
this I'm ALWAYS looking for new sources for sponsorship, always scrounging, 
always keeping an eye out for that one holy-grail dumpster.

If most of you took 1 hour a day and dedicated it to scrounging new gear 
(like I do) you'd be amazed what you can find. The big keys/advantages are:

1. Have a cause, and know your image.

The Group, and our being on TV is the biggest help in getting sponsorship. 
We're VERY high profile, thusly, everyone knows us in this area, and it 
helps immencely. I HATE THE PRESS, but I love the results.
If I can call someone and they just know the name The Geek Group, I've 
already got my foot in the door. The Geekmobiles are also a great help in 
this, Geek-3 gets LOTS of attention wherever it goes.

2. Give them a monetary reason to donate something.

The 501(c)(3) status is the biggest boost to serious sponsorship we've ever 
had. With it, everything anyone gives us is a complete writeoff. This is 
what makes our having serious corporate sponsorship possible.
Whenever anyone gives something to the Group they get 2 things immediately. 
1, a writeoff, 2 good PR. Not many coilers websites have over 250,000 hits, 
ours did in the first 6 months :)

These are the ONLY 2 aces we have that you don't.

Here's what you can use:

3. Be a people person.

I hate people, I'm a lab-rat. But I can talk, I know what to say and how to 
say it to get past the secretary, to the guy, and walk out with his old 
occilisope that he's treasured since college. It's a Hacker skill, called 
Social Engineering.

I'm not saying to feed him a line, or misrepresent yourself in any way, 
there's no need, and if you do, you suck in the ethics dept. I'm saying that 
WHAT you say isn't NEARLY as important as HOW you say it. This was the 
hardest skill for me to learn personally. I blew a LOT of good prospects in 
my first year just because I couldn't get past the secretary, and with a 
name like The Geek Group, they remember you for a WHILE!

4. Be able to spot the oppertunity.

There are a TON of places to get things, you just have to know they're 
there. Most people looking for a servo-motor would go to a motor shop, 
WRONG! Try a hospital :)

The BEST dumpsters in town:
Hospitals *
Universities *
Factories *
Forklift Sales and Repair shops
Appliance Shops
BIG print shops (ones that use a Web-Feed press) (for pallets, we use a lot)
HVAC Shops (I've gotten 3 squirrel cage blowers this WEEK!, and they ALL 
work fine)

get the idea?

*= you will most likely need permission to scrounge in this dumpster.
Or just be quick, have a 3 person team, and a lookout :)

5. Be ready to get dirty.

A lot of our stuff we get while doing our Urban Exploration. Take a trip to 
the wrong side of town, the old industrial area. Look for abandoned 
factories. You'd be amazed what they leave behind. This is how we get a 
whole substation (well, at least the good parts). I can't COUNT the things 
we have extracted from old buildings shortly before they were torn down. If 
I had the tools, gear, and team, to move REALLY big things we'd have a lot 
more. I've left a LOT behind, easily over $1,000,000 in gear that I've seen 
destroyed. If only I had a few more tools...and a truck....and a 200 ton 
crane.....and the facility to store it all in....and a portable plasma 
cutter....and a structural engineer....and 20,000 Egyptian 

Have fun, I'm off to Sigma-6!


Try the classified ads thing--no
>telling what kind of stuff you might pull in--dead
>microwave ovens, old welders, old x-ray xfmrs?  Who
>Do You Yahoo!?
>Yahoo! Auctions - buy the things you want at great prices

Christopher A. Boden Geek#1
President / C.E.O. / Alpha Geek
The Geek Group
Because the Geek shall inherit the Earth!

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