When I posted the article about museum quality rifles in stock in Moscow, people were surprised at the variety of available equipment. They shouldn't be, Soviet stock-keeping was exemplary!
"When my grandfather fell out of favour, he was thrown out of Moscow and appointed as a chief of some engineering warehouse somewhere at the end of the Earth, but, thanks to his past achievements and wartime service, still in the European USSR.
The unit was "castrated", there was nothing for entertainment except hunting and vodka, and most importantly, nothing for even a Supply Commander to steal (rock bottom, as I understand it), even though the warehouses were colossal, left over from the Tsarist army. Everything was already arranged, and my grandfather just kept order.
For example, there is some perfectly fine hemp rope. Look at the tag (issued by the Tsar's General Staff!), and it says "keep for 50 (fifty) years". It was 1966, so they got rid of it all. The officers carried it home almost in tears, a perfectly good thing, wonderful condition, but there is nothing to use it for at home. Something could be used, we had an excellent axe produced in 1917 and, naturally, written off in 1967. I suspect that it is still lying there somewhere.
However, the accursed Tsarists did not establish a tag for the cannonballs - there was no tag, and that's it! My father says that my grandfather had a pair of soldiers whose main duty was to dust, oil, and paint them. There were many of them, they were very heavy, and took up a lot of space. This went on until my grandfather managed to write them off above quota. It is a scary thing to think what would have happened if the Tsarist intendants wrote down "keep forever".
PS: I talked to the communications officers in the Russian army a few weeks ago, and asked if the TA-57 (Telephone Apparatus model 1957) was still in service. The people confirmed that it was."