A digital life - save Saab history and don't throw it away

The SaabBlog team keeps getting surprise posts. Packages from readers who send Saab history. In the envelopes and boxes we then find old Saab brochures, price lists and sometimes Saab books. Each package is almost like Christmas or Birthday, you are never sure what you are getting. The condition of the brochures is very different. Sometimes we find printing that looks like fresh from the Saab dealer. Then again ancient brochures that were marked by the years. Water damage, signs of use of any kind. Not collector's items, definitely not. No reason for us to throw away.

Saab history gets a second life digitally
Saab history gets a second life digitally

Collectible automotive rarities are generally choosy. Brochures and price lists that are as good as new are in demand. If you find slight traces of use, this is usually still accepted. However, the situation is quite different when it comes to traces of improper storage. Water damage is bad, so is yellowed paper.

The ravages of time are not desired

The value of these relics goes to zero. Even if they are particularly rare, 40 or 50 years old and from the early days of Saab. At some point they will be disposed of, thrown into the waste paper container and thus fed back into the cycle. With a little bit of luck.

Saab artifact stored in humid environment - not good
Saab artifact stored in humid environment - not good

If we get such old brochures that have been marked by time, then we help them to find a new, second life. In digital form, and the scanner saves what can still be saved. Water spots can be retouched, as can age spots on the paper. If a small piece of the page is missing, you can perhaps rework something digitally. And ugly creases or tears are undone by photo editing.

A new digital life

What is no longer suitable for collecting as an analogue, paper-bound medium lives on in digital form. This is work for us, but also fun. It would be unfortunate if the garishly colorful testimonies from the 1970s or 1980s were to disappear forever. Because what Saab had printed there has cult character throughout and is part of our car culture.

And browsing through old brochures often just puts you in a good mood.

Water damage - it can be eliminated digitally
Water damage - it can be eliminated digitally

This is how "ugly", used and worn-out brochures live in our digital Saab Heritage Archives further. They no longer age and are preserved for the future. In the archive, they are accessible to all subscribers at any time and tell of a major car brand that often went its own way.

The prospectus, which was stored in a private collection, thus becomes an artefact for many. And that's a good thing, because with this small contribution, Saab history is preserved. At least as long as the blog is online.

If you have old brochures that are duplicates or simply take up too much space, then you shouldn't just throw them away. Pack a surprise package for the blog team. We save your treasure and give it a second, digital life.

5 thoughts on "A digital life - save Saab history and don't throw it away"

  • PS
    Will there be a list here at some point of what is still missing, what is perhaps desired, a targeted call?

    I don't have much and what I have is emotional. But if the Saab print material serves a higher purpose and the "hall commonality", I separate myself anyway and send it.

    • That would be difficult. On the one hand, we have only digitized a fraction of the stock, on the other hand, nobody can know what is missing in the archive. There is no list of brochures and price lists since 1947.

  • Professionally, I often deal with construction files and often find the historical context remarkable. That which, in addition to the turmoil of the world wars or the socialist scarcity economy, drove people to realize their private and commercial construction projects. I feel the same way when I get my old SAAB brochures out. In addition to the SAAB brochures, there are often some from other manufacturers. Starting with our first SAAB, those from Vovo and Audi as real alternatives, where the 900NG prevailed in 1994, later more advertising mailings that fluttered into my office. Why do I go into it like that, .. because I don't want to break my brochures out of this context from my memories, the stamp of the SAAB car dealership is just as much a part of it as the coffee stain that the brochure received when forming an opinion on Autowahl. For others, the stain is just a stain, for us it is part of our path to SAAB, ... so Tom will have to wait for our brochures and books. Especially because our son is now also infected with SAAB.
    Nevertheless, and precisely because of that, thank you very much for the digitization, maybe I'll scan something as well, whether it has the quality that Tom achieved with it?

  • It's some great work being done here. I am happy about every old Saab brochure that you put online. I like to browse there - maybe I'll even get in the mood for a 99 or 900. Please continue, where else can you find historic Saab brochures online?

  • This is so great...

    that I'm running out of words.
    I know the (enormous) effort from professional practice. But with one very important difference. Whenever I have elaborately prepared historical material, there was a client and a commercial interest behind it.

    Banal example: It was about impregnating an architectural classic of modernism after its monument-appropriate renovation in brochures, online and in exhibitions with meaning, stylizing it into a representative location, ultimately increasing its value and the amount of the rent.

    Be that as it may, I know the effort involved in dealing with historical material. And I take off my hat. It's really amazing what the blog achieves...

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