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What's your approach once you've bought a bulk lot?



  • khmellymelkhmellymel Member Posts: 1,314
    I love the brick seperator, but left mine in Vancouver (I'm in the UK currently), so I ordered a new one with my last order from S@H (strangely it was £1.59 in Pick a Brick but £1.99 on S@H). But until I watched that video I never thought about the two seperator thing - genius! I'm going to order another one when I order for the exclusive Hulk figure!

  • CCCCCC Member Posts: 20,556
    I'm going to get another one too, now I have seen how to use two at once.
  • scratchdeskscratchdesk Member Posts: 155
    I must buy 2 asap. Then my thumbs will quit throbbing! Hooray!
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO Member Posts: 10,836
    edited May 2012
    I guess the brick separator looks strange to some because it does not look like a set of teeth or finger nails trying to pry apart plates :-)

    Brick separators are invaluable, but I find sometimes it seems they 'wear-out' and no longer grab a part well. But will the many lots I have gotten in the past I have about 10 to choose from.
    Plus I recently bought as again many of those do not seem to do well at their job any longer.
  • JezzatheshedJezzatheshed Member Posts: 164
    I'm on my third big sort at the moment and my way is a great way to sort.
    1. get the Sunday dinner on.
    2. Invite the kids (grown up) over.
    3. Tip the whole lot onto a large blanket.
    4.Supply surgical type gloves to protect finger nails.
    5.Sit around and sort into bins (Keep kreo and mega deaths for the charity shops)
    6.Have a great family dinner!

    Every one loves finding mini figs in the pile and they are placed with stickered parts and partial assemblys to aide identification of sets, keep all the loose change and bin all the crayons and felt pen lids- I keep the Hotwheels car..there is always a Hotwheels car!
    My latest big box has thrown up 9 different Star Wars sets and 1 indiana Jones set so far together with about 8 Bionicles and 1 technic set. There were 96 minifigs in total.
    Not bad for £22.00 off the bay.
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO Member Posts: 10,836
    ^--gloves are a must sometimes with lots...
    I think people think, incorrectly, that all lots are going to be freshly cleaned. This simply is not the case with most lots and I am happy to get most of the parts in a lot...
    Lets face it, kids are kids, and they are all not going to treat their LEGOs like AFOLs do. Do be thankful if you only find dog hair or slightly grimy parts in your lot as I have seen much much worse (like someone who lay out all of their LEGO on a driveway to take the pic then proceeded to scrape them all across the pavement back into the box)
  • peterlinddkpeterlinddk Member Posts: 170
    ..there is always a Hotwheels car!
    :) Oh how true that is :) I even found one amongst those of my own old LEGO-bricks in my parents' cellar. Guess they just attract each other - kind of like paperclips and fridgemagnets.
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO Member Posts: 10,836
    I have found about 1 marble per lot as well.
  • CCCCCC Member Posts: 20,556
    BUT besides a lot of Megabloks(?)that were not stated in the auction i also found a child-tooth!!! Man this is the nastiest thing that ever happened to me!
    I like to think that the Lego got the child back - I hope the tooth fell out when he was pulling it apart with his teeth.
  • CountryboyCountryboy Member Posts: 36
    Ahaaa, these are all so true. Marbles, hotwheel cars, broken crayons, cut up straws and of course megablocks and kre-o!!

    Thanks for the link on the separator! I had no idea how these truly work and have 4 as of now as a result of lot buys..

  • jamiewjamiew Member Posts: 165
    I've gotten quite a few army men as well but usually from the older lots
  • hoyatableshoyatables Member Posts: 873
    I just liberated two big rubbermaid bins plus a 1980s-era LEGO "briefcase" and two boxes from large sets from my parents' attic that are full of completely mixed sets of LEGO. Includes a mix of both my LEGO and my brother's LEGO (we shared quite a bit, it seems!)

    Overall, I have to say that I am very impressed with the condition of these bricks. Some of them are from the very early 80s, and with the exception of the printing on my very first fireman and policeman (stickers not printed torsos) they are in great shape overall. I did notice a few broken pieces -- a spear here, a plate there -- but overall very impressed with LEGO's durability. One note of caution -- rubber wheels did not seem to fare that well in the summer heat, I think.

    It is proving to be an interesting sorting project even with general knowledge of what lies within.
    - To start, I removed the few random non LEGO items.
    - Next, I sorted through the various instruction booklets and fronts/backs of boxes that we saved. This was good reminder as to what I owned -- I remembered the big sets, but did not remember the little sets or all of my brother's sets.
    - I then sorted through everything for minifigures. This was helpful because after a first pass I seemed to be missing quite a few minifigures given the sets I knew I had -- turns out it was because I was missing an entire box that was off in another corner of the attic!

    Let me tell you, this was an interesting experience. I discovered a large number of wayward arms -- it all became clear when i looked at some Castle mini figs and realized I had made some "modifications" to create a more uniform style as a kid. Also found a large number of isolated hands. It was kind of creepy!

    I also discovered more minifigs than what corresponded to the instructions/sets I owned. I seem to recall a minifig pack or two from my childhood but, particularly with the Space theme, I have more minifigs than I would have expected even accounting for that. I must be missing a set or three.

    - Next step is going to be trying to assemble sets. I think I'm going to start with the large Pirate and Castle sets - based on the condition of the minifigs, I think those sets are likely to be more complete - and then move to Town and Space. I'll start with the large sets (those are, after all, the ones I care the most about trying to reassemble) and then move to the smaller vehicles.

    My goal is to present my brother with his "restored" sets -- he just had a little boy (who is my godson) and in a few years I suspect they'll enjoy this trip down memory lane. And I suspect that Frodo et al may go on a journey to a new land and be forced to choose sides among the Black Falcon, the Lion Knights, and the Forestmen . . . !
  • hoyatableshoyatables Member Posts: 873
    I've started to go through my childhood collection. Assembling set by set. Pulled the large plates and block pieces (e.g. castle wall pieces) out of the giant rubbermaid bin, then dumped about a quarter of the bin onto the lid so that I'm left with a much more manageable amount to sift through for pieces. Considered color separating at first, but I don't think it would be helpful.

    I am now separating into sets. Since I know what sets are in there, I just go to Peeron, pull out the entire inventory of pieces for a set, and then assemble. Started with the Pirate ships first -- they are my favorite, and the brighter colors were relatively to pick out. I am going to continue with the Pirates (El Dorado fortress, etc) that are also bright whites and yellows.

    I've noticed a few recurring issues. First, the joint pieces tend to be much looser. Any thoughts on how to solve that problem? Second, the clip pieces (flags as well as 1x1 clips) don't always "clip" as securely as I'd like. Any thoughts on remedying that issue?

    Also fun to be reminded of what the instructions used to be like, before they were so simplified. Amazed that the Clipper was all of about 14 steps -- takes that many steps to build a Speeder Bike these days!
  • JT32JT32 Member Posts: 124
    This is a thread I've read with much interest considering I bought a massive 150kg collection around a month ago.

    As the collection came with a large pile of instructions I assumed it would be easy to part the individual sets out but how wrong could I be.

    A couple of days in I realised I was getting nowhere I knew it was going to take some sorting of epic proportions. Due to the pure amount of Lego I'd bought I've had to sort everything individually right down to colour, brick, plate, tile, size and then many many misc categories.

    Weirdly I think it's great fun and with a bit more hardwork I'll have sorted every piece into a nice and easy system which means I can finally start parting out some sets and building them.

    If you've never taken on anything of this size before and fancy it, my advice would be to give it some serious thought and preperation before you do. It's very rewarding though, fingers crossed it will be financially rewarding one day.
  • mrseatlemrseatle Member Posts: 410
    edited June 2012
    Got a small lot yesterday that had something new to me... BTR bricks? They seem to be GI Joe and Transformers (pre kreo about two to three sets worth). Also got a plastic "swiss army knife" for play-dough, and a dozen Duplo bricks.
  • BrickarmorBrickarmor Member Posts: 1,258
    I separate first by size, then by type (brick, plate, other). I learned to be very careful when tossing out what seems like junk. Pretty sure I threw away the top of Saesee Sin's head (not sure I spelled that right, but he's in the Jedi Shuttle) and aaaaaaalllllmost threw away the big grey ball to IJ Temple Escape!! For some reason, I consciously hesitated ("cuz you never know...") and when I looked up some other unique pieces, voila, big grey ball is indeed a Lego. A very important one I might add! Not every single Lego has the name, element number, or (c).
  • hoyatableshoyatables Member Posts: 873
    A few projects in, and I am tempted to refine my process. Sorting out the parts would almost certainly make it easier to then find the pieces I need - right now I am flipping through three bins multiple times looking for what I need.

    Also learned that you have to make sure you read the color of each piece on Peeron -- the colors shown aren't always the actual color you need.
  • AFFOL_Shellz_BellzAFFOL_Shellz_Bellz Member Posts: 1,263
    We just did the same thing on a much smaller scale and we sorted by plates, tiles, bricks, and such which helped tremendously. We ended up with many sets that have no minifigs. I recommend you start a list so you can list the theme, set name and number, and what part(s) if any are missing. That info will help temendously when you are deciding what to sell them for.
  • SherlockbonesSherlockbones Member Posts: 411
    I brought my first ever bulk lot the other month, what I tend to do is hunt for the minifigures first then the parts :P
  • littletokilittletoki Member Posts: 519
    I've changed my methodology a bit with this last huge round of loose Lego.

    1. Take a shot/drink every time I spot a Mega Block or other non-Lego piece.
    2. Pass out.
  • LegobrandonCPLegobrandonCP Member Posts: 1,917
    ^ *Thumbs up* I like the way you think.
  • BrickarmorBrickarmor Member Posts: 1,258
    ^^ Yyyyouuu always was my only gooder fr... gooder... gooder friend...

    I can't wait to auction off the growing box of Mega Blechs I've got under my sorting table. I'll be sure to link it here so that the mad rush of Bricksetters will overwhelm ebay servers.

    To be fair, though, from the last 20-25 lb. lot I got, I've pieced (or am piecing) about 10 sets, mostly complete, so I'll probably sell off those and keep the remaining pounds, maybe even come out on top a bit!
  • LegobrandonCPLegobrandonCP Member Posts: 1,917
    ^ When I find MB in a bulk lot, I snap them in half. I've always wanted to burn them but it isn't safe in the backyard. :( Maybe when we have a BBQ...
  • Penkid11Penkid11 Member Posts: 788
    ^Can M*** B**** burn? It sure would be a waist to have a part of our bulk lots just sitting there.
  • mrseatlemrseatle Member Posts: 410
    I bought a big box of megabloks for $5 last week because I had a magic feeling there might be some Lego in there. I was right, there were two Roboforce Minifigs in there, no other Lego, but that was worth it for me. I might have to try that strategy again...
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO Member Posts: 10,836
    The one thing you can do with MB is donate it to a charity or to a women's shelter (as there are usually kids there too).
    I did that with a ton of MB I found that was in a huge LEGO lot, so MB does have its uses
  • zippityzoomzippityzoom Member Posts: 86
    Just bought a huge mixed lot (60+ lbs) of mixed sets ( Star Wars, City, Indiana Jones, Atlantis, Ninjago, Space Police) on Craigslist. It's over 40 sets and pretty complete, just mixed up into 2 huge bags. The instructions are included for almost all of them.

    My question to all is what's the best way to sort the sets out? Any advice would be appreciated.
  • JosephJoseph Member Posts: 629
    edited March 2013
  • BustinBustin Member Posts: 286
    I had 10 gallons of loose Lego sitting in my spare bathroom tub for a month sorting and washing.
  • BRCBRC Member Posts: 125
    I just got a tub of my old Lego back from my parents house, I forgot what I had as a kid as it was nearly 30 years ago.
    I sorted out by looking for obvious signs, "SHELL OIL", minifigures, parts of a cement truck, etc and parts that looked like I knew what they'd be off. Went online found the Vintage instructions and got building.
    Man it was fun, now the kids and I are building a City using my old Lego as well as buying new stuff again.
  • zippityzoomzippityzoom Member Posts: 86
    Almost finished sorting through about 100 minifigs and now on to thesets themselves. Should I seperate and then build or just start building from the 60-lb pile?
  • jasorjasor Member Posts: 839
    ^^ 60 lb pile! :P
  • Bosstone100Bosstone100 Member Posts: 1,431
    I have a huge trunk filled with childhood sets. Luckily my mother is a packrat and also saved all of the directions from all of our sets. :-)
  • wagnerml2wagnerml2 Member Posts: 1,376
    This weekend I am buying a huge collection of over 100 late 80's castle and space sets. I had to explain to the guy that the collection was not worth more becuase he broke down every model and sorted it by color.......I still haven't gone through the last two of these types of collections I bought. I have a problem :)
  • zippityzoomzippityzoom Member Posts: 86
    After a few weeks with my bulk purchase of 40+ loose sets , I've come to conclusion that it's best to first sort by color, then within color, break it down into parts.

    For the large plates and anything more than 2x2, I cluster them together. For anything smaller, it goes into one of those organizers with the moveable partitions.

    For the less common colors, I keep them loose in a ziploc bag.

    Once this is done, it should be pretty easy to then start piecing together the sets.
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