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Storing and organizing pieces

GeddesGeddes Member Posts: 574
I am about to begin (as the title suggests) organizing and storing my pieces collection. I wondered if some other uk members could point me in the direction of some good drawer units.

Thanks in advance :)

Comments

  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,272
    edited August 2013
    I literally just answered this question on flickr for someone, so here's what I said. I don't have hundreds of thousands of loose parts, and probably never will have, it's not my core interest in this hobby, but I wanted a neat solution for storing those that I do have.

    I've gone for an IKEA/Really Useful Box combo solution.

    4 litre box with two hobby trays inserted.
    LEGO Room Project

    Three of these 9 litre boxes, with each box having two 9l sorting trays inserted.
    LEGO Room Project

    A custom tower to house the four boxes, built using the Build Your Own tool on the RUB website. The tower has a stationary top which I thought would be useful for chucking unsorted parts in but I haven't really used them as yet. If you use this tool and just add three 9 litre boxes, then a single 4 litre box, then add a stationary top, then you get the tower that I bought. You'd need to purchase the inserts separately though, they don't come with the boxes.
    LEGO Room Project

    The tower then fits into a slightly customised IKEA Expedit unit, I say slightly customised because I simply removed the shelf (or to be more exact, never added the shelf when building the unit).
    LEGO Room Project

    The RUB system is entirely modular, you can have any configuration of tower you like and mix and match inserts to suit your needs. It's expensive, but it's premium quality, you get what you pay for.

    You can almost certainly find the 4 and 9 litre boxes plus the inserts cheaper elsewhere, but if you want to design your own tower then I struggled to find other sites that sell the modular tower components. You can buy pre-configured towers from other sellers though such as Hobbycraft (who sometimes have 342s on them), depends what you need really, my tower requirements were very exacting because it had to fit height and width-wise into the Expedit units.
    margotkhmellymel
  • GeddesGeddes Member Posts: 574
    @atkinsar thanks, i will look into it :)
  • PaperballparkPaperballpark Near ManchesterMember Posts: 4,220
    edited August 2013
    I use a few of these from Clas Ohlson:

    image

    http://www.clasohlson.com/uk/Organiser-Cabinet/40-6980 (also available in their shops, which is where I get them from)

    £9.99 each, they're ideal for the smaller parts and smaller quantities of larger parts. I like being able to pull a drawer out and have easy access to parts.

    For larger parts, or larger quantities of small parts, I use stackable tubs very similar to the RUBs, usually 1.6L or 2L, which I pick up from a local cheap shop.
    Cam_n_Stu
  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,272
    ^ that's exactly what I used to use, except they were Draper ones, I still have them in the loft, now looking sorry for themselves. I'll find a use for them when I start my next project, building a garage to replace the garage that is now a LEGO room.
  • PaperballparkPaperballpark Near ManchesterMember Posts: 4,220
    @atkinsar I have a feeling they might be draper ones, just sold by Clas Ohlson.

    I have no doubt that my collection will probably outgrow them and move into tubs at some point, but even when it does I can still use them for 1x1 and 1x2 plates and tiles, one colour per drawer or something like that. Heck, I already have one colour per drawer for some 1x1 round plates. Damn PAB walls forcing me to buy loads! :)

    Plus I do like just being able to pull a drawer out and have access to parts. I'm not sure I'd ever use hobby trays in RUBs.
  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,272
    edited August 2013
    Yeah, boxes and sorting trays will not be for everyone. I don't actually access my parts (ooer) very often, so it's not that inconvenient for me.

    By the way, you can get RUB tower configurations that use drawers instead of boxes, you can still use the inserts in the drawers e.g http://www.reallyusefulproducts.co.uk/uk/html/onlineshop/rub/tTower5x4lDraw.php and http://www.reallyusefulproducts.co.uk/uk/html/onlineshop/rub/aTowerHobbyInsert.php
  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 1,038
    @atkinsar, I was just about to answer this question with pointing to your awesome LEGO organization. I have been watching your project develop since the beginning of the year with great interest! I just wrote a post about you this week: http://thebrickblogger.com/2013/08/building-a-lego-room/
    atkinsar
  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,272
    edited August 2013
    So you did, nice write up and photo selection, thanks. Just checked out a few of your other posts too, really interesting, it's getting added to my feed.
  • PaperballparkPaperballpark Near ManchesterMember Posts: 4,220
    ^^^ yeah I know, I just prefer having one type of part per drawer. That might not be sustainable as my collection grows, but at the moment it's fine :)
  • SilentModeSilentMode UKMember Posts: 586
    I bought a whole bunch of 9L Really Useful Boxes, and at the moment I've used them for storing certain parts (e.g. one box for 1x1 plates, one for 2x plates, one for slopes). It's helped with determining which parts I have too much of as I'm reducing my collection.
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,446
    edited August 2013
    My storage area is a work in progress. I just started building a storage/build area. I like the plain old tackle boxes to store my pieces. I can easily access them and I can see what is in each box. I need about 15-20 more unfortunately :(

    Sorry about the quality of the pic. The lighting is horrible.
  • Thanos75Thanos75 Member Posts: 1,120
    @Pitfall69..... I think you made the pic blurry on purpose so we cant see all the FB and DS sets that you are hoarding.
    Pitfall69FollowsClosely
  • BuriedinBricksBuriedinBricks USAMember Posts: 1,367
    I have the larger version of the one @Paperballpark posted. I love them. The drawers are actually pretty deep and the hold quite a few parts.
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,446
    Thanos75 said:

    @Pitfall69..... I think you made the pic blurry on purpose so we cant see all the FB and DS sets that you are hoarding.

    Hahahaha. You got me!!! I cropped most of those sets out ;)

    This is eating into my storage space:

  • legomattlegomatt Member Posts: 2,548
    Am I the only person who misread the thread title as Snoring and sorting pieces... I almost expected a 'How do YOU stay awake?" follow-up comment.

    :oD

    ( I don't sort, not yet... but it's getting there... sets beginning to be broken up... needing a system).
    Andor
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,446
    I'm all over the place. I had to put my Lego all over the house while we were getting our basement finished. Just now getting everything back in order.
  • CapnRex101CapnRex101 United KingdomAdministrator Posts: 2,354
    I use the least scientific storage solution possible for most of the smaller parts which come as spares in sets. Inside the boxes of the Advent Calendars are plastic trays, which I have found very useful for storing things like 1x1 round plates and levers which are easily lost.

    For larger parts, I have several twenty-two drawer cabinets from Maplin and some large 9L boxes which I picked up at The Range.
  • BrickarmorBrickarmor USAMember Posts: 1,258
    My choice drawers are finally back on sale on Amazon US. 20 durable, nicely sized drawers for $30.
    http://www.amazon.com/Sterilite-Clearview-Small-Drawer-4-Pack/dp/B001OM2NGW/ref=pd_sim_hg_2
  • Pitfall69Pitfall69 0 miles to Legoboy's houseMember Posts: 11,446

    I use the least scientific storage solution possible for most of the smaller parts which come as spares in sets. Inside the boxes of the Advent Calendars are plastic trays, which I have found very useful for storing things like 1x1 round plates and levers which are easily lost.

    For larger parts, I have several twenty-two drawer cabinets from Maplin and some large 9L boxes which I picked up at The Range.

    I use those to put my pieces in while I'm building.

  • khmellymelkhmellymel United KingdomMember Posts: 1,305

    I use the least scientific storage solution possible for most of the smaller parts which come as spares in sets. Inside the boxes of the Advent Calendars are plastic trays, which I have found very useful for storing things like 1x1 round plates and levers which are easily lost.

    I actually use these to store my opened polybag sets. Usually one slot is beg enough to fit one broken-down build. I draw a "map" and put it in my polybag instruction binder in case I ever get confused which set is in which slot.
  • kwkwkwkw USAMember Posts: 1,207
    @Brickarmor thanks for the link buddy these look great! I ordered a set :)
    Brickarmor
  • littletokilittletoki Member Posts: 519
    I use individual storage containers with removable dividers. I like the customization aspect of the containers - for example, when I only had a handful of the dark grey grills, they used to be in a smaller compartment. It was easy to change the spacing once the quantity increased.

    These are the plate 1x2s.

    Plate 1 x 2 Sorted!

    Here are the containers stacked on Ikea's Billly shelves.

    Lego Room: new storage containers
    bmwlegokhmellymelCapnRex101HarryPotterLoverPitfall69kekeke
  • leemcgleemcg Member Posts: 607
    Hi @littletoki - what do you do when you get new parts - do you have other More-than-you-need storage elsewhere, or would you need to reorganise those boxes?
  • littletokilittletoki Member Posts: 519
    @leemcg ~ it depends. I used to reorganize those compartments (which in itself was strangely enjoyable) but most of those cases are pretty full now - and getting heavy!

    So, if it's a significant amount, I store it separately. The bottom row of each bookcase and the end cap of the middle table is devoted to "surplus".
  • mcvitiemcvitie Sheffield, EnglandMember Posts: 292
    @littletoki - May I ask what type of storage boxes they are and where to get them
  • Cam_n_StuCam_n_Stu UKMember Posts: 368
    edited August 2013
    For unsorted 'surplus' or mixed sets for children to play with I find the 24.5 litre Really Useful boxes ideal.

    They are 600 x 400 x 140mm so not that deep, meaning that you can easily look through the contents without having to empty them out. A bonus when the kids are playing with it! They are also shallow enough to slide under many beds.

    The only drawback is that it is pretty difficult to find bricks and mortar stockists and buying online usually means a serious shipping cost.
  • littletokilittletoki Member Posts: 519
    @mcvitie ~ the main ones I use right now are Artbins. I usually wait until they're on sale at Joanns (a US based craft store) and have free shipping - like now.

    Large bin: http://www.joann.com/artbin-super-satchel-box-with-removable-dividers-9007ab/prd61682/

    Shallower bin: http://www.joann.com/-artbin-super-satchel-slim-compartment-box-9101ab/xprd408781/

    They are also available on Amazon - just do a search on Artbin.

    I also use Plano and Rimax containers as well.
  • CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
    Cannot find these storage solutions over here, and the ones your shared are both out of stock now @littletoki :)
  • plasmodiumplasmodium UKMember Posts: 1,950
    Random selection of different sized Ziploc bags, plastic pots, biscuit tins and the odd funky IKEA sorting tray thing. Hey, it works for me.
  • PaperballparkPaperballpark Near ManchesterMember Posts: 4,220
    I need more storage drawers...
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    i have green ikea boxes for different themes, made or broken built sets and then rubs for random pieces all sorted. once we loose interest in a theme it goes to the rubs.

    what do people fo to store instruction manuals, pergaps needs a different thread?
  • GoldJonoGoldJono Aberdeen, UKMember Posts: 217
    I've been thinking about this for sometime, for when I build my lego studio / man cave / office and when flying home last night I realised the airline catering trolleys with plastic draw trays are the closest thing to what I want for storing and sorting Lego Elements. I also think it would be quite a cool way of recycling / up cycling them. I was wondering if anyone else had used them for this purpose or had any ideas on it?
  • graphitegraphite USMember Posts: 3,271

    what do people fo to store instruction manuals, pergaps needs a different thread?

    http://www.bricksetforum.com/discussion/1411/how-does-everyone-else-store-their-lego-instructions
  • ClumsybumsyClumsybumsy Member Posts: 16
    I have my collection sorted by type, but I am still refining.
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    We've decided to move away from sorting by type to sorting by colour.
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    @GoldJono‌ rub make towers of 7 or 9 litre plastic drawers if getting cabin trolleys proves difficult or have they already been ruled out?
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,332
    Although thinking about it they are more kids room than man cave! So probably not at all what you're after.
  • leemcgleemcg Member Posts: 607
    edited July 2015
    (deleted as I accidentally posted without being ready whilst trying to embed images)


  • leemcgleemcg Member Posts: 607
    edited July 2015
    I am in the middle of a big re-sort, so I happen to have everything out, and have taken a few pictures in case anyone is interested in what I do.

    So I start with all my elements in food storage boxes. These cost just over £1 each from Tesco, and happen to fit nicely on the shelves in my study...



    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/19800331065/in/dateposted-public/

    There is no particular rhyme nor reason as to which elements are in each box. It all depends on how much of an element type I have. For instance. All of my cheese slopes are in one box, as are jumper plates. But light grey bricks are spread across 4 boxes.

    Each box has a label, with a Bricklink inspired description, and often approximately colour coded. I am a bit obsessive when it comes to fonts, so I have found the right font that Lego use...

    I have two boxes for tiles. One which has black, white and greys in, and the other everything else, including decorated tiles:

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/19612330910/in/dateposted-public/

    Within a given box I store everything in ziplocs. I usually separate out every type (i.e. I sort by colour and type), but sometimes if I only have one or two of a brick type, I put multiple colours in the same ziploc (as you may be able to see here in the bottom left of the box, where I don't have many 1x1 round tiles in each colour):

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/19793068342/in/dateposted-public/


    This system gives me the ability to find what I want quickly, and I can move the boxes easily enough if I am building in the main house. You have to be careful to make sure there is no air in each ziploc before you seal them. You may see some white pieces of paper in some of the ziplocs. These mean that I have large amounts of those parts, so there is overflow in my basement. That's generally where I have picked up lots of a single element on Pick-a-Brick walls or BrickLink.

    I store those overflow pieces in more sturdy Really Useful Boxes in my basement:

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/19179503453/in/dateposted-public/

    I think I started doing it this way because I buy most of my Lego from BrickLink so everything tends to come already sorted in it's own ziplocs (or at least it does from the suppliers I prefer to use), although I did buy some more ziplocs online - they are not expensive.


    CupIsHalfEmpty
  • leemcgleemcg Member Posts: 607
    Am I doing something wrong - I can't seem to embed images.  Have just done URLs for now.

    Amusingly, in the time between uploading the photos and how, I have had a comment on one of them "great shot" apparently of a box... Reckon that one might be bot!
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