Hello, my name is Hans, and I have too many cameras. I didn't want to admit to myself that I had a problem, but as I stood over my camera bag, looking at those shiny bodies staring back at me, I dreaded the backache I would feel the next day from lifting that sucker to my next shoot. As I heard my not-so-young anymore bones creaking under the weight of all that alloy, I knew the truth: It was time to let some go.
But how does one choose which of their children to be rid of? All of my cameras serve a purpose! Well, that's what I tell myself anyway. The truth is, there are some cameras that manage to regularly find their way into your hands and others that just don't. You want them to, but they just don't seem to ever make it. This problem is compounded when you're shooting film as great cameras can be had for cheap. A yard sale here, a deal there, and you're swimming in a bunch of bodies with no lenses that you swear you're going to use as soon as there's a good enough deal on the market to complete your system.
I've found another issue with having so much gear is not that it takes up physical room, but that it screws with my process. I feel obligated to shoot with it, even though it may not be the best gear for the job. For instance, have you ever acquired a shiny new lens, and for your next shoot, you use it, even though you know damn well a different lens would have been better suited to the job? Uh, yeah, me neither.
Having too much gear makes you prone to the old "bringing a knife to a gunfight" shtick. You want to use everything you have. I've done the same thing with flashes. I've overlit a subject because I just had to use that new strobe I got the other day. It's time to really evaluate your needs, your direction as a photographer, and start to focus on a working kit that does what you need it to without excess.
As an exercise, go grab your camera bag. Go ahead, I'll wait. Got it? Great. Now, check those nooks and crannies. Check the interior pockets. Unzip everything! Were you surprised by anything you found there? Did you find a lens that you forgot you even had? A set of triggers that have long been replaced? Chewing gum? Jimmy Hoffa? Check your shelves. Any bodies that haven't been touched in 6 months (besides your backup, of course)? Any lenses? Flashes? Light stands? Do you have a closet full of expired film that you intend to shoot but never will? Sell it! If you can't be bothered to sell it yourself, you can always use a vendor like KEH to offload your gear. You'll take a hit on the value that way, but at least it will be out of your hair.
It's time for a summer cleanse! Although it's sad to get rid of gear, you almost never regret it. And the stuff that you truly can't live without usually finds a way back into your grasp. I think I've owned something like 4 RZ67s in my life. I keep selling them and reacquiring them. Go figure. Hey, maybe if you get rid of some of your old gear that's just sitting around, you actually can afford that shiny new Nikon 105 f/1.4.