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Zyra's Bazaar Storage System

Advanced rules on how to run the storage system that helps with Hoarding

Zyra's Bazaar Storage System is explained in the section on Hoarding. The system is a way of storing items so you can find them. Cardboard boxes are used, each with a storage unit symbol and number. Numbers increase sequentially, and the symbol is something which you devise as a unique symbol, a hieroglyph to identify storage units as different from other things. The symbol should have a polarity so it looks different the other way up. This is so you can tell which way up the boxes are, and which way round the numbers are! The original Zyra's Bazaar used this symbol: Storage Unit , but it's recommended that you coin your own.

Zyra's Bazaar Storage System has some basic "rules" as follows...

* All storage units are clearly marked with their identity (symbol and number).Storage Unit Symbol

* If any item is put in a box or taken out of a box, the database must be updated to take account of that. No-one shall remove items and fail to update the database.

The computer contains the following files:

* list.txt - a list of all of the items and which storage unit each is in, along with other information.

* stunits.txt - a list of all of the storage units and their locations, descriptions, etc

The system also has some advanced rules of storage as follows...

* A storage unit can be any item, but it must be non-leaking of contents. If the object is a single item, its contents are the one item which it is. More usually, a storage unit is a box, case, canister, bag, sack, or crate.

* If the storage unit is a cardboard box (which they typically are), it's usual to write the storage unit symbol and number on the box, clearly, on at least three of the six sides, for example the top, sides, and end. If the top is folded over in an interlocking way, the symbol and number are usually inscribed twice so that if the box is opened and then closed with the pieces folded the other way around, the inscription is still visible.

* If the storage unit is a luggage case, the storage unit symbol and number can be put on a luggage label and hung on the handle.

* No misleading items are packed in any unit. There must be a unique relationship between an object packed and its description. In other words, only one object of each description may exist in each box. For example, if box 525 has a Ford starter motor in it, any other make of starter motor should not go in the same box, unless the starter motors have the names of the models of cars on them, or other distinguishing marks, which are noted in the item descriptions.

* Multiple objects of the same type can be packed, and the quantity is noted. However, these items are indistinguishable from outside the box.

* Objects in storage units are not attached to other items, so if an item is lifted up, other things are not attached to it.

* Boxes should not be too heavy. It's best to choose boxes that are of a weight that you can easily lift them, not only now but when you get a bit older too.

* Boxes should be strong enough that they will not come apart when lifted. If you plan to move house, the boxes need to be strong enough that they can be lifted by furniture removers (who are not necessarily as careful as you), and the stuff will not spill out. I recommend boxes for furniture removal can pass the following tests:

* A zero-gravity test in case the boxes are thrown through the air!

* Drop test from a height of about 6in.

* Being able to be turned upside-down without damage.

* If the contents are fragile, this should be stated on the outside of the box and/or the box needs to be strong enough to be stood on.

* In the unlikely event that a storage unit is compromised, for example if the box is split and the contents spilt, the unit needs to be restored by establishing a good box clearly labelled, and the items checked versus their entries in the file.

* If a box that was a storage unit is sold, for example if someone buys all of the contents and wants to take away the box, the storage unit symbol and number should be crossed out.

* Storage units are allowed to go inside other storage units, but if this happens, care has to be taken when generating a house-moving inventory for international moving.

* When stacking storage units, care should be applied such that they do not exceed the weight carrying capacity of the ones underneath, the furniture, or the floor.

* Rooms may be adapted to carry more than the natural amount of storage. Impromptu shelving may be added. A room can be described as having "a span" if a door into the room is used as one of the pillars to support a loose door which is bridged across between the hanging door and another high object. When adding a span to a door, the underside of the door should be chocked to stop the weight pulling it off its hinges.

* If there are more than a few hundred storage units, a "storage units locations" file needs to be created. This lists the locations of storage units by a location code. Location codes are allocated according to a logical consistent system which is described in a standard which you create. Storage unit locations can be considered like postcodes within the house.

* Storage item dates and storage unit descriptions are optional. However, having them helps to locate items, and to correct mistakes if any are made.

More about this at the page about Hoarding