Jump to content
Spud

Atari's Landfill Adventures, I now have the proof it's true.

Recommended Posts

We still don't know what else was buried, or how much, and probably never will...

Completely the opposite. :) Jim Heller, the man who dumped the materials in the first place was involved with the dig, told them what he buried, and actually helped them locate it. He also took plenty of pictures of what he dumped and what they found was completely representative of it. Some of the pictures are in my article that Spud mentioned (and I have a lot more that Jim sent over to me to scan in for archiving). It was all store returns for credit mixed in with materials from the Service Center operations in El Paso (console and computer parts and accessories - which were dug up as well). About 750,000 carts were dumped consisting of over 60 titles (including 5200 titles).

 

I just did another interview with Jim in fact this last weekend at the Midwest Gaming Classic:

 

Edited by Retro Rogue
  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great job Marty! Would be interested in seeing the other pictures he is talking about that he took. Also great job on writing Atari: Business is Fun. I will probably be reading it again soon.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I recently found a brief article about the landfill in Archaeology Magazine (June 2014).

 

It includes a few photos that I had not seen before: The Video Game Graveyard

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know I am late to this forum, but the dump finds continue to be sold on ebay. Got myself a Defender cart and a shrink-wrapped Centipede recently on ebay.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know I am late to this forum, but the dump finds continue to be sold on ebay. Got myself a Defender cart and a shrink-wrapped Centipede recently on ebay.

better late than never ....

 

welcome to the forums :)

 

hope you also have some working stuff ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whatever you do, don't open the bag. I hear the "dump" carts really wreak of garbage.

 

Future news: Some people become addicted to huffing dump carts. Some will pay almost anything to get a "fresh" cart bag to huff.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

better late than never ....

 

welcome to the forums :)

 

hope you also have some working stuff ;)

I really wish I could say I had my og vcs. I remember it being boxed up when my parents got us the atari adapter for our colecovision. I have no recollection what happened to it. I was always intrigued by the urban legend of the nm dump. Those purchases led me to this site and thread. This website brings back so many early childhood memories. I collect mainly G1 transformers, but I have to consider selling some of my recent buys/reissues/mp to fund an atari collection.

 

Oh, and I did open up the nm purchases - the defender cart was putrid. I left it outside a few clear spring nights here in PA to get the smell out, I might have to put it in a tupperware box with some dryer sheets to get the last bit of sewer out of it (got the smoke smell out of some vintage tf's that way), but the centipede is stank-free. The shrink-wrap has a few tiny ripped spots, and there is definitely nm desert particles in there, but there is no odor.

Edited by sciflyer25

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems like the smell-o-meter level would affect the collectability; the more smelly, the more it reflects its provenance. Sort of like old baseball card packs with the gum inside...

 

If you kept it sealed for fifty years, someone could open it up and once again experience first-hand genuine Atari-burial-New-Mexico-landfill odors.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've wondered if decades old gum is still chewable. I would imagine so because the active ingredient in gum is non-biodegradable so keeping it sealed wouldn't change much. The flavor might be a bit off though.

 

Anybody want to open one of those worthless early 90s packs of baseball cards and pop the gum in a video review? Bonus points if you blow a bubble with it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Future news: Some people become addicted to huffing dump carts. Some will pay almost anything to get a "fresh" cart bag to huff.

I would imagine some blotter paper with the fugi logo on there & could sell scratch-n'-sniff samples

 

 

I really wish I could say I had my og vcs. I remember it being boxed up when my parents got us the atari adapter for our colecovision. I have no recollection what happened to it. I was always intrigued by the urban legend of the nm dump. Those purchases led me to this site and thread. This website brings back so many early childhood memories. I collect mainly G1 transformers, but I have to consider selling some of my recent buys/reissues/mp to fund an atari collection.

 

Oh, and I did open up the nm purchases - the defender cart was putrid. I left it outside a few clear spring nights here in PA to get the smell out, I might have to put it in a tupperware box with some dryer sheets to get the last bit of sewer out of it (got the smoke smell out of some vintage tf's that way), but the centipede is stank-free. The shrink-wrap has a few tiny ripped spots, and there is definitely nm desert particles in there, but there is no odor.

 

I wonder if it's stank free 'cause it was buried in with a case ... were there 6 or 10 in a case I dunno

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, and I did open up the nm purchases - the defender cart was putrid. I left it outside a few clear spring nights here in PA to get the smell out, I might have to put it in a tupperware box with some dryer sheets to get the last bit of sewer out of it (got the smoke smell out of some vintage tf's that way), but the centipede is stank-free. The shrink-wrap has a few tiny ripped spots, and there is definitely nm desert particles in there, but there is no odor.

So when you say you "opened up the nm purchases", you are just talking about the zip lock baggie, right?

Not the actual shrink-wrapped original box itself?

 

Because I'm just wondering if there is any correlation to the lack of stank and any functionality to the carts. AFAIK, no dig cart has actually been found in working order... right? I purchased a Phoenix dig cart, and it not only was shrink-wrapped but came with an additional plastic external box (and pricetag) from Target... something I had forgotten for 30 years, but when I saw it I immediately recognized it as a theft-deterrent extra casing from back in the 80s. It made me wonder if that could have offered more protection to the cart itself. I have no plans on opening mine, but I still wonder if the additional covering might have provided extra protection that could result in some of these dig carts actually being functional.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So when you say you "opened up the nm purchases", you are just talking about the zip lock baggie, right?

Not the actual shrink-wrapped original box itself?

 

Because I'm just wondering if there is any correlation to the lack of stank and any functionality to the carts. AFAIK, no dig cart has actually been found in working order... right? I purchased a Phoenix dig cart, and it not only was shrink-wrapped but came with an additional plastic external box (and pricetag) from Target... something I had forgotten for 30 years, but when I saw it I immediately recognized it as a theft-deterrent extra casing from back in the 80s. It made me wonder if that could have offered more protection to the cart itself. I have no plans on opening mine, but I still wonder if the additional covering might have provided extra protection that could result in some of these dig carts actually being functional.

There should be a way to open the security box without destroying it. Those things are reusable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So when you say you "opened up the nm purchases", you are just talking about the zip lock baggie, right?

Not the actual shrink-wrapped original box itself?

 

Because I'm just wondering if there is any correlation to the lack of stank and any functionality to the carts. AFAIK, no dig cart has actually been found in working order... right? I purchased a Phoenix dig cart, and it not only was shrink-wrapped but came with an additional plastic external box (and pricetag) from Target... something I had forgotten for 30 years, but when I saw it I immediately recognized it as a theft-deterrent extra casing from back in the 80s. It made me wonder if that could have offered more protection to the cart itself. I have no plans on opening mine, but I still wonder if the additional covering might have provided extra protection that could result in some of these dig carts actually being functional.

I meant the ziplock bag. The box has the shrink-wrap still intact(you can see the seem on the back of the atari box) and the plastic external box, which is really hard. Still has the $32.99 Target sticker on that plastic - bone-white like it was on the shelf yesterday. That is one of the reasons I bought this particular Centipede. Some of them have price tags that are tan or brown - exposure to more elements.

The external plastic definitely has a few small cracked/compromised areas, and there is some dirt inside. I just smelled it, there is still a slight garbage smell, but minimal compared to the loose Defender cart. I know for sure the plastics can retain odors. Airing out and dryer sheets should get that out. I have also read that placing an item with coffee grinds sealed in tupperware for 24-48 hours can get the smell out of plastics.

I am not sure I will shadow-box display this or send it in to VGA. The website advertizes an ET in a nice acrylic display with the COA and metal tag. Looks fantastic, but is pretty damn expensive, maybe more expensive than what the Centipede cost me.

post-42447-0-43969400-1432176566_thumb.jpg

Edited by sciflyer25

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

VGA is a scam. Just shadowbox it yourself or take it to a professional framebuilder.

It might not be worth it to some collectors, and I am not sure I will display mine this way, but it is not a scam. You know what you are paying for and what you get. I love the acrylic display cases, and I have many for my sealed/boxed transformers, but I bought those without having to send the figures in and be graded.

I have had art professionally framed as well, and that is not cheap, as it can easily exceed $150 for a small print.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It might not be worth it to some collectors, and I am not sure I will display mine this way, but it is not a scam. You know what you are paying for and what you get. I love the acrylic display cases, and I have many for my sealed/boxed transformers, but I bought those without having to send the figures in and be graded.

I have had art professionally framed as well, and that is not cheap, as it can easily exceed $150 for a small print.

You make a valid point there. I have framed multiple pieces of art over the years. The vast majority of the time, I paid far more for the frame than the art print.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Has anyone realized that this thread is over 10 years old now? I put this video together and put it on you tube. It's the videos I made back in 2005 that goes with the broken links in the beginning of this thread. Back in the days of uploading at 28k and everyone worried it was an April fools joke???

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Has anyone realized that this thread is over 10 years old now? I put this video together and put it on you tube. It's the videos I made back in 2005 that goes with the broken links in the beginning of this thread. Back in the days of uploading at 28k and everyone worried it was an April fools joke???

 

 

Nice to finally see the fabled 2005 video. Nice to hear it from a local. A lot has happened since then, LOLz. :thumbsup: Edited by stardust4ever

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice to finally see the fabled 2005 video. Nice to hear it from a local. A lot has happened since then, LOLz. :thumbsup:

That video is awesome.

Edited by sciflyer25

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I am not sure I will shadow-box display this or send it in to VGA. The website advertizes an ET in a nice acrylic display with the COA and metal tag. Looks fantastic, but is pretty damn expensive, maybe more expensive than what the Centipede cost me.

 

That looks really nice. I like how they separated the metal COA tag. I did the same with the shadow box I made for my Defender. I can see going the VGA route for ET, but only for ET. It's worth it just to protect the investment. I'm assuming ETs are still fetching a lot of money relative to the other games. Also I would think it helps keep the value up. They will probably never be worth as much as they did right after the dig due to the hype, but the good-looking presentation will help recuperate some of the value if a buyer decides to resell it. Other games wouldn't be worth it, IMO. I bought a shadow box from Walmart and I'm happy with the results.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...