Non-riffing collections

I am a collector by nature. I can’t help but try to put together a collection of anything even remotely shiny or highly detailed. I’m Generation X, the Generation of Second Childhood, which colors my choices greatly. I have quite a few, including collections of:

  • money (non-valuable) from around the world (mostly lost);
  • dice of all kinds and sizes;
  • diecast warships, largely Japanese aircraft carriers and destroyers;
  • diecast military aircraft;
  • Lego;
  • rubber model dinosaurs;
  • Star Wars and Star Trek Micro Machines (both nearly complete);
  • Star Wars Action Fleet (pretty much complete, multiples of many of them)
  • other later 90s-early aughts Star Wars action figures and vehicles (nowhere near complete);
    … also a library of paleontology-related publications including some rarities.

The Lego collection (just unpacked)

Most of the ships

Some of the rubber dinos

My son has a collection of fine diecast model cars at my place, but he’s not really materialistic at all. When I was a kid, in addition to the coins and dice I had a collection of small spherical objects (balls, roll-on deodorant applicators, a sub-collection of marbles), a very small collection of model brass cannons from museum gift shops, a ton of model ships (many Japanese destroyers), planes, and tanks, and a large collection of tabletop games and gaming miniatures. I have given up a few collections as an adult, including most of my rock and fossil collection (that hurt).

What are your non-riff-related collections? Feel free to add pictures. Questions: what are your plans for your collections after your death (sell for me). Do you keep your stuff in the box (I don’t)? Do you keep the box (sometimes)? Where do you get your stuff (ebay mostly)? Do you sell as well as buy (nope)? How did you get into your collecting (Dad)? Where and how do you display your stuff (it is much of my decor)?


Also, in case you are interested, one aid to budget collecting are peg warmers, an action figure collecting term for the fifty Bespin Guard figures left over at your local store after the figures have been thoroughly picked over and all the Darth Mauls are all gone. A lot of peg warming merchandise is out there at steep discounts, sometimes in bundles. I try not to get something for more than 50% of MSRP. It means I only have about half of the Japanese aircraft carriers available, but it also means I’ve been able to feed and clothe myself.


A collection of 50 in-box Bespin Guards (and nothing else) would be a pretty flex move.


I have a skull collection. In my collection so far:

  • cow
  • elk
  • goat
  • pig
  • gemsbok
  • nutria
  • porcupine
  • bat (complete skeleton)
  • bat (skull only)
  • squirrel monkey
  • hyrax
  • raccoon? (found in yard)
  • camel
  • coyote
  • bobcat
  • javelina (several)

A store I used to shop at – now an online only store, used to have a place in Berkeley – once had a giraffe skull with five or six neck vertebrae attached, which was extremely cool. A giraffe’s whole neck is only 7 vertebrae so this thing was like five feet tall. But it cost something like $6000 so I had to pass.


Is that your entire collection?


Except for some pieces that aren’t part of my collection because they’re raw materials for artwork, I think so. Plus one lower jaw of unknown origin, but I think it’s a large fish.



Then how do you keep your brain safe?

:rofl: :crazy_face: :face_with_peeking_eye:


Miss Manners Replies:

One does not trot out one’s skull collection in front of unsuspecting strangers without also offering up a few unsolicited bits of additional information. For example:

How and when did one begin such a collection?
Were the items in one’s collection acquired from retail establishments or has one gathered some of them in the field (not to suggest one has engaged in any actual skullduggery)?
Does one’s collection include only skulls? No other bones? No monkey’s paw we should be aware of?
What does one do with the rest of the anatomy from one’s victi – uhhh, subje – uh collectibles once the skull has been harvested?
Does one have a House on Haunted Hill style basement room with a hidden in-floor vat of acid?
If so, can we come over? Please?
Does one keep one’s collection in one’s “skullery”?
Yorick? Did one know him well?

It is never considered too late to provide answers to these and any other questions one may find burning in the inquisitive minds of those one will encounter in one’s skull collecting forays.






I collect dragons (I could say I collect books, but I just love them. I’m not necessarily collecting them, just buying them with the intent to read). This picture doesn’t have all of my dragons but it has a few of them.


Well it’s a conversation starter, innit? :smiley:

My interest started in college when my art teacher would bring skulls in for us to draw from. I particularly remember she had a horse skull. I just thought they looked really interesting.

Some came from stores: mostly Paxton Gate in SF, The Bone Room once of Berkeley and now online.

Some were found: my dad finds javelina skulls in the desert in Arizona and mails them to me, much to my stepmom’s distress.

The pocket gopher is the only one I actually killed. He was killing all my tomato plants; I stood in the yard and politely asked him to stop, but when he didn’t, I set a spring trap for him.

And my very first skull of my own is the pig, which came from a friend’s pig roast, as an intact head. My then-boyfriend now-husband skeletonized it for me. That’s how you know when a man is a keeper. (To be fair he did say afterward: “That was the most disgusting thing I’ve ever done, never again.”)

No monkey’s paw, I do have some random assorted bones but not really ones I consider part of the collection. Snake vertebrae are particularly pretty.

Mostly I don’t get the whole body, though I have on occassion skeletonized my own victims (a found squirrel, the gopher, a woodpecker that sadly smashed his head into a large window). For that I use a process called maceration, which just means you put it in a bucket of water for a few months. Bacteria do the work and you periodically pour off the decomposed bits and add more water until you have a sparkling clean skeleton and a thriving patch of yard where you poured off all that gross but nutrient-rich slurry. Tiny bones tend to get lost in the process but I do have almost the entire squirrel, in a jar.

Thankfully no as I would most certainly fall into the first week. Plain old water and time does the trick! Also acid would eat the bones as well, Vincent Price’s expertise notwithstanding.

You got something you need… dissolved?

Only if by skullery you mean my living room :smiley: though it is kitchen-adjacent so maybe I’ll start calling that corner the skullery.

Alas, no.


You might like this fellow.

His name is Edinburgh, and he came from Scotland. He has some chips because he got broken in a move once and I had to puzzle-piece him back together.


Oh, very nice! I do like him a lot. I have some bookends that are dragons in my bedroom and two necklaces as well. Oh and a dragon floormat.


If he has chips he’s Scottish alright. We do love chips (fries). Chips with everything. Especially deep-fried stuff including Mars Bars. Absolute mystery why we have such high incidence of heart disease.


I don’t feel like much of a collector of anything. But there are a few piles of stuff that maybe fit the criteria.

The boxes and boxes of music CD, for example. Yes, CDs are demoted to “ancient” in the age of digital downloads and, yes, needing the physical space to store them is absurd (which is why they’re ripped and stored in a server in a closet so I can listen to anything whenever). Two reasons for keeping with CDs – first, I like having the packaging artwork; second, no DRM because DRM can go take a dump in its shoe. Highlights from the collection:

  • Almost all of Moby’s discography between the Go single (1991) and the South Side single (the second one, from 2002). There are a few promotional pressings in there.
  • The 1967 recording of Anton LaVey from here in San Francisco. Mostly as a novelty; partially because random drek like this works to spice up mixes sometimes.
  • William Shatner’s The Transformed Man because, again, novelty and spice. I don’t have any of Leonard Nimoy’s albums but do have a few of his tracks on a compilation album of TV stars taking a stab at being music stars.
  • An Einstürzende Neubauten side-project album with a musical take on Dante’s Inferno.
  • Pretty much everything that Negativland has put out commercially (not so much their first stuff, which is a bit hard to listen to).
  • Game OSTs because there is some real musical talent in some game soundtracks. Current favorites include the soundtracks to NieR:Automata and Cyberpunk 2077. Biggest oddity is probably the soundtrack packaged with Burn:Cycle for the CD-i.

All in all, the entire lot of music is 252GiB of storage for ~800 albums and ~9500 tracks.


When I bought my car, I was excited that it still had a CD player because yes, I still listen to CDs. :slight_smile:


In recent years, I’ve started collecting vinyl. My collection didn’t really pick up steam until my husband and I moved into our house and I had room to put things.

Below is my setup. In the middle is our CD player/iPod speaker. And no, I don’t know what that duck’s doing there.


The duck is clearly straining to keep that box of records from floating away. That’s what the duck is doing there. Lol.

Ooo collections …

I collected Non-Sport trading cards for a number of years. Star Wars, Star Trek, several movies, I think I still have sealed boxes of cards for Stargate. No idea what any of it is worth these days as the non-sport trades I used to read I think are all out of print now.

I have several Lego kits. Harry Potter trains, LOTS of NASA models. My husband gave me the Lego Ideas Dinosaurs kits for Christmas (thus where my current avatar came from).

Lots of teddy bears, and various Disney plush (favorite character is Figment)

Oh and @Pearls_Mint, I have a replica A arafaresis (Lucy) skull in my living room. (again, note the avatar) It’s had a few people comment on it when visiting!


I was just mulling a thread like this. Time for some thread necromancy. RISE FROM YOUR GRAVE!

Anyway, I collect fine press books. These are, broadly speaking, private press books which are letterpressed with hand-set type, printed on hand-made paper, and hand bound. As you might imagine it’s a small collector world and can become very expensive, so I tend to be found in the dilettante end of the pool.