Vintage calculators, do they need regular occasional use?


Kind of a somewhat silly question: I have several vintage mostly HP and some TI calcs. Do I need to say turn them on once a month or at some regular interval and go through a few key pressing in order to keep them in working condition?

The reason i ask this (not to put TI down or possibly it is precisely the reason it is a TI and not an HP)is because i have a TI-30 calc that was working say about 7 yrs ago. It has been in storage undamaged without battery for that long. It was dead when i tried to turn it on last month.

Thanks for any input. I guess we all need to know this if we are going to have our calculators outlive us (of course hopefully all of all us will live 100+ yrs? ;)

I keep all my calcs in their cases without batteries in a corner of my closet. Is that good enough?

Anyone else have any thought on storage to maximize longetivity and preserving working condition, please share. thanks


I keep my beloved HP41CX with batteries in its case in a cupboard. Once a month, I turn on the HP to do my expenses claims, so it has a previleged job to do :-)


IU think there may be an oxidation buildup with idle keys. Occasional use is probably best to maintain condition. A factory
Leica man said take your camera out and use the heck out of it.


I don't know if I want or can use the heck out of them. I got a dozen HP and 3 TI not counting the dead TI-30.

I am not in a field of work requiring calculator usage much.

Beside, I don't want to ruin the keys by pressing the heck out of them.

Btw, anyone has any idea i can try to see if i can revive my TI-30? ;). Hard to believe but that was actually my first exposure to a scientific calc which is about 24 yrs ago.

Edited: 22 Mar 2008, 2:32 p.m.


I had left my HP48GX (upside down) on a shelf for quite a few months and found about half the keys had ceased to work. There were batteries in the unit and they looked okay to me, but the fixthatcalc guy found signs of battery leakage but no damage. So a cleanup was all that was needed. So now I play academic lottery - I programmed the PowerBall game into the 48GX for the purpose (not a sophisticated application). This means the 48 get exercised about once or twice a week.


This will be quite a pain for me to have to exercise my 15 or so calcs every few months. I have a couple that are in mint conditions removed just one or twice from the box over the past few yrs.

anyone else has any other comments? I am sure there are several people out there with like 2 dozen calcs at least. what do you do?

Any hint of reviving my TI-30? I guess at least i can get a new TI-30 pretty cheap...


Do you relly think I have the time to routinely exercise each of the 260+ calcs I own?
Other than keeping the vast majority of them without batteries inserted, I try to keep dust and light away from them (when possible).
When the mood is right I take one of them and play a little with it, that's all. This is a hobby not a job!
Sure, occasional bad luck occurs: you may find a key not working anymore, some LEDs not lighting up, and so on. I just take a note and keep them away for a future when time will be available to try to fix them. I don't think that they should be kept in a sancta sanctorum.

And I am pretty sure that most of them will outlast me...


Edited: 23 Mar 2008, 1:13 p.m.


Heh, good point. Just hate to lose a calc.

Does seem to me the hps have somewhat better build quality than ti


Nevermind. I got the TI-30 to work again. I think loose battery conector.

TI keys are still not as good as HP keys.

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