The man cave to beat all man sheds – collecting wise

I was looking on our Just Sheds Flickr Group the other day and noticed a great shed…. well the shed was a normal metal shed in Sydney, Australia, but it was what was stored inside that took my shed breath away. 028 (50-50) 006 (50-50) 007 (50-50) 008 (50-50)

I will leave it to sheddie Alex to explain.

As you will see what I collect is varied.

It may be easier to list what I don’t collect, which is glassware & porcelain (unless it holds beer of course)

I try to group things together in themes and like a good bower bird everything is placed ‘just so’

I can spend a LOT of time displaying a new addition – making a frame/shelf/cabinet/bracket. Sometimes just wire and magnets. I have recycled quite a few old fence palings to make picture frames and shelving.

MY COLLECTIONS: You could place the word Old (or Vintage) in front of everything listed below;

  • Tools: workshop / garden / unusual tools (rustier the better – de-rusting is a favorite pastime)
  • Oil Cans, oilers, grease guns.
  • Still Cameras / Movie Cameras / Slide Projectors / Movie Projectors and related items.
  • Breweriana: drink trays, tankards/steins, cork screws, soda siphons, coasters, bottles etc
  • Militaria: esp trench art
  • Weaponry: faux: guns, swords, spears, jousting lance, mace, battle axe, war hammer etc
  • Native Spears n Bows (some real and some faux)
  • Maritime: boats, oars, rowlocks, telescopes, ship lights, ship candle holder etc
  • Fishing: rods, reels, baskets, hooks, floats, lures, nets, spear-guns etc
  • Pirate related (how do you know if you’re a pirate? . . . you just argh!)
  • Kitchenalia (yes it’s sad – but I like anything old – and they’re sort of tools?)
  • Ned Kelly / Gold Fields / Colonial.
  • Sydney Harbour Bridge / Sydney Opera House.
  • Cowboy / American Western, cap-guns, holsters, injun arrows, covered wagon etc
  • Snow Domes.
  • Sporting Equipment (which is a bit odd as have never played or followed sport)
  • Calculators: Manual, electronic, abacus, and a 1992 ‘vintage’ laptop
  • Oil Lamps (any old lamp really)
  • Robots (just toy ones)
  • Electrical: microphones, earphones, large light globes, valves, telegraph etc
  • Games, Puzzles, Toys.
  • Music: instruments (gourd-xylophone, thumb-piano etc) records, cylinders, piano rolls
  • Transport: Model boats / model cars / model trains / model cable cars / model planes
  • Ink Wells, Ink Pens, Writing / Drawing instruments and gadgets / typewriters
  • Tins: biscuit tins, sweet tins, tobacco tins, big tins, little tins.
  • Tobacco related: pipes, pipe tools, cheroot holders
  • Coins and Tokens (esp for Sydney Harbour Bridge)

Pretty much anything old / unusual / interesting.

Most items I purchase are usually damaged, grubby or rusty. I very much enjoy reviving them and have often saved an item from certain land-fill.

I like to research and tag items where I can. I now have quite a few mystery items and have included a section for some of these. I would appreciated any information that could help identify them.

My personal favorites:

– Matchstick model of the Sydney Harbour Bridge (very old – 1932 halfpennies inlaid)

– Jousting Lance – made from scrap (a homage to the movie: The Castle)

– Zulu Shield (¾ size tourist souvenir from Africa)

So I emailed Alex the owner and he kindly Shared his shed with you the sheddies on, you can see more of the amazing collection here, Alex also has a site for his shed here.


ManBower - Alex

What unique things to you collect in your shed? let me know via thattwitter or in the comments.

Of course if you think you have a better shed than Alex or the sheddies then why not Share your Shed for Shed of the year 2011!

By Andrew Wilcox

I love sheds Founder & judge of Shed of the year - Wilco writes mainly about sheds. About the blog Enter your shed into #shedoftheyear