Skips & Scavenging

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The Skip, or Dumpster as it is also know, is a large, usually metal box with one or more sides missing. Into this box are placed items of discard, or rubbish in layman's terms. While ones around building sites and demolition areas will normally be found full of rubble, ones outside offices or homes can offer sweet pickings for your urban scavenger.

Among the more select items to be found can be chairs, tables, shelving, plumbing discards (often totaly reusable, such as things that are the wrong colour), and a plethora of electrical equipment often including not only houshold wiring, but TV and stereo parts, or even whole working computer systems!

Skips are normally found coloured yellow in the UK, but are many different colours worldwide, and they are many different shapes too.

Skips can unfortunatly be dangerous too. A top-open only skip can fill with rain, and a late-night scavenger could easily slip and be hurt while hopping in to search for treasures. If you are planning to go scavenging from skips, it is always a good idea to take some minimal equipment with you such as:
    Gloves (preferably strong and waterproof)
    Plasters (to use for first aid)
    A torch
    A strong satchel, bag or backpack
With these you should be able to scavenge skips in the dead of night safely, though this is not really necessary. The people putting stuff into skips are normally doing so because they do not want it. A simple matter of asking them, or even a look at somthing with a nod of the head to them, can be the easiest way of avoiding bother. Ask first if you can.

But also remember that not everything in a skip is useful. You will also expect to find broken bottles, rotting food, nails jutting out of beams and all manner of icky stuff.

You may get lucky, you may not, but do the best with what you can get. It may be a milkbottle, it may be an odd antique vase. Look at everything twice.

To all who go scavenging, be careful out there.

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