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Running out of room - what to do!

TheLoneTensorTheLoneTensor MericaMember Posts: 3,950
edited June 2013 in Collecting
It's amazing the number of people that have qualified their comments in other threads with something like "I have no more room." I have run into this also. I've been collecting for many years, and have gotten to the point of really being choosy now for what I want to buy to build.

Reselling completely aside, the problem is that there are so many sets that I have in boxes and want to build, plus more great sets coming out all the time. Problem is, I simply cannot fit them anywhere else. How do you guys handle this problem?

1) I've thought about building then selling the set relatively soon. Sure you take a loss from RRP, but that's the price of enjoying the original build. This is similar to playing a videogame and selling that while it's still hot, and you can get relatively close to RRP. I do worry about builder's/seller's remorse, however, and wonder if I'll really miss them.

2) Rotating from cold storage. This is ok assuming there is enough storage space to keep them relatively intact. I can't see rebuilding a set over and over and having near the same amount of enjoyment. Plus, when do you draw the line here? Having 10 active sets and 50 in cold storage sounds excessive (though it's easily attainable)

3) Focus on smaller sets. Polybags and CMFs have been filling this role nicely, and I have tended to gravitate to them lately to provide my "Lego fix." They are small, cheap and have relatively good play value, especially when combined with existing sets (many fit into the modulars very nicely - Decorator/Pet Shop, Starlet/Palace Cinema, Ghost & Clock poly/Haunted House, etc.).

4) Holiday rotation. The Winter village sets for us come out of cold storage only at Xmas, as will the Haunted House and other MF sets at Halloween, but every year gets a little more crowded. 5 years from now I see myself running into the same problem as 2, above.

5) Train immunity. When it comes to trains, and their very nature of modular setup and play, I tend to give them a pass and buy anything and everything that comes out. Switching track, car and engine configurations is natural and leds itself to only bringing out bits and pieces at a time. Plus, my boys and I simply love trains. Luckily trains aren't nearly as prolific as other themes, otherwise I'd be buried.

Anyway, how do you guys deal with your own Lego critical mass situations?
lucianLegoFanTexasStompingFreak
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Comments

  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 18,874
    I don't buy everything. For most new sets, I have 50% of the parts anyway, normally closer to 80% or more. I download the instructions and build them from existing parts in whatever colours I like, maybe BL or PAB for parts I really need. If I enjoy the set, I might purchase the correct colour parts too to make it properly complete. Same with minifigs, most of the time I don't bother, especially for city figs. Licensed is harder, since the figures are more unique.
  • emilewskiemilewski CT, USAMember Posts: 475
    edited June 2013
    When I first came out of my dark ages I had to buy anything and everything. I am more mature about it now and only buy what I want and only stick to a very few themes and specific sets in those themes (other than LOTR where I am a completist). Even so, I am starting to run out of room. I have all the WV series and it is on permanent display in my Lego room (and brought upstairs during Christmas season) but I am done with expanding it now. I have no room for the winter village market and even for the cottage I had to box it up as it would not fit into the display (Lego room or living room). I may end up selling that even though it is great. Soon the whole thing will have to be boxed up only to come out for the holidays. The HH is set up in my city layout but with PC and Family House coming I will be boxing that up and it will become a seasonal build only.

    I still cannot part with any of the sets I really like, and now only buy the ones I really like. I am starting to put sets in storage as a result with the intent to rotate. The only other option is to finish the basement to expand display room, but we don't have the funds for that at the moment. Difficult choices.
  • pvp3020pvp3020 Member Posts: 113
    I have a similar problem. I think it reached critical mass at the end of last year, and apart from the January wave of SW sets and PC, I've hardly bought any Lego this year. That was until this weekend - the new SW, Galaxy Squad and City sets are all too good to pass up, with more on the way! So I now need to clear space for them, but I've nowhere else to put the currently built-up sets. Breaking them down is not an option as all my boxes are full and there's no space for more boxes!

    I do plan to start selling sets and parts, but not before my son grows out of them which won't be for a few more years. And I also want to achieve my childhood dream of building an MOC that uses every single Lego piece I have (it'll never happen, but I can still dream!)
  • Jonn420Jonn420 Member Posts: 267
    A small storage unit cost around 50-60 a month, a little more if its climate controll. Put all your newest sets in there and build older ones, after a month or two , switch the sets out for different ones. No need to sell.
  • TheLoneTensorTheLoneTensor MericaMember Posts: 3,950
    Jonn420 said:

    A small storage unit cost around 50-60 a month, a little more if its climate controll. Put all your newest sets in there and build older ones, after a month or two , switch the sets out for different ones. No need to sell.

    I've always thought that the moment I need to rent a storage unit, I'll be way past the point of where I should have made a hard decision.
    CCC said:

    I don't buy everything. For most new sets, I have 50% of the parts anyway, normally closer to 80% or more. I download the instructions and build them from existing parts in whatever colours I like, maybe BL or PAB for parts I really need. If I enjoy the set, I might purchase the correct colour parts too to make it properly complete. Same with minifigs, most of the time I don't bother, especially for city figs. Licensed is harder, since the figures are more unique.

    You bring up a good angle I've forgotten about, in building sets vs mocs. I lean toward keeping sets relatively intact and modifying them as opposed to sorting all the pieces. This changes the landscape as to what to keep and what not to.
    Crownie
  • samiam391samiam391 A Log Cabin in KY, United StatesMember Posts: 4,335
    At this point, I do what most others don't, I sell.

    If I reach the point, where I am looking around at a room of LEGO... every niche filled with a LEGO set or figure... then I realize that some have to go.

    Ask yourself the question, am I really enjoying all these sets? If you have x amount of sets, then are you really being appreciative of say, the chima set in the corner, the SW one in the other?

    What may have been a favorite long ago, might not be so much anymore. Take a few minutes to sit back and evaluate.

    Sell the sets you don't enjoy as much, and replace them with ones you do.
    CrownieLegoFanTexasBeavlegocrazy1234
  • OldfanOldfan Chicagoland, IL, USAMember Posts: 647
    tensor said:



    1) I've thought about building then selling the set relatively soon. Sure you take a loss from RRP, but that's the price of enjoying the original build. This is similar to playing a videogame and selling that while it's still hot, and you can get relatively close to RRP. I do worry about builder's/seller's remorse, however, and wonder if I'll really miss them.

    2) Rotating from cold storage. This is ok assuming there is enough storage space to keep them relatively intact. I can't see rebuilding a set over and over and having near the same amount of enjoyment. Plus, when do you draw the line here? Having 10 active sets and 50 in cold storage sounds excessive (though it's easily attainable)

    4) Holiday rotation. The Winter village sets for us come out of cold storage only at Xmas, as will the Haunted House and other MF sets at Halloween, but every year gets a little more crowded. 5 years from now I see myself running into the same problem as 2, above.

    #1: I have a mildly serious case of collector's disease; when I buy something, I never want to let it go. Not quite to the hoarder level yet, but I generally have a hard time culling my collections. It's something I deal with every time I get new stuff! Even though I would love to have all the LOTR sets, for example, I just can't justify having them rather than SW, Space, and my other favorite themes, and I'm not rich enough to buy every Lego set available. I'm not a Lego reseller; any $$ I can get for selling a set is icing on the cake rather than the primary reason for purchase, and I'm not planning on selling the collection anytime soon.

    #2: Try "50 active sets and 1000 in cold storage" and you're closer to my ballpark...ample storage space is a big consideration as I'm shopping for a new home. Once I can carve a dedicated Lego room out of my house again, I plan to rotate display sets 3-4 times a year. I enjoy rebuilding sets over and over, though; if Lego suddenly went out of business or quit making such cool product, I would still enjoy the sets I have for years to come.

    #4: I also have the MF sets on holiday rotation, but most of my collection is not time-dependent; no weather changes in Classic Space! So this doesn't help me too much.
    TheLoneTensorlucian
  • BrickdepotBrickdepot Member Posts: 7
    I have to agree to samiam391 that it´s probably the best way to sell something, but also i have to admit freely i just sold a little bit of everything i ever bought.
    I got to point #3 collecting CMF´s and all kind of Minifigures.
    Sometimes I buy new sets, part them out on Bricklink and sell everything except the Minifigures. I only build MOC´s now from all the parts i allready own.
    If anyone has some special prints, marketing Minifigures or other rare ones to offer, please contact me.
    Thanks
  • EKSamEKSam Member Posts: 349
    We don't have a single set on display downstairs but every flat surface upstairs is covered with Lego. I find myself passing on sets/deals because display space is at a premium. Throw a 8 month old baby in the mix, who looks down upon Lego (pun intended) and its a recipe for disaster. She pulls down displays by the baseplates, its quite possible she did so because she didn't like the layout. :-) So everything has to be higher up. My wishlist for this year is really short and sweet.:-)
    I put the winter village in a closed display after Christmas, the Creator Homes in Bookcases, the LO has her Friends and Harry Potter sets laid out to play with everything else is boxed.
  • dejavudejavu USAMember Posts: 235
    I've been collecting LEGO for less than a year and already running into critical mass. I think my best move is to kick my daughter out and take over her room.
    klatu003lucianLegoFanTexasFollowsClosely
  • yys4uyys4u USA SoCalMember Posts: 1,092
    Go vertical! I'm at that critical mass stage too where every flat surface has LEGO on it. I try to keep them out of my living room, but there are a few sets there. I mainly tried to keep it confined to my room, much to my girls dismay. Well after running out of space, I decided to go vertical, I had one shelf up before, but now I replaced it with a much larger one, and have space set up for a couple more shelves. That will probably get me through the year, but start of next year I'll probably be back on this thread looking for advice.
  • LegoMom1LegoMom1 Member Posts: 652
    edited June 2013
    I'm waiting for someone to say they pitched a tent in the back yard and convinced the family to move into it.
    dejavuLegoFanTexasTheBigLegoskimarjoryk
  • HokieJoe99HokieJoe99 Member Posts: 351
    A bath tub can hold a surprising amount of LEGO. Just make sure you close the drain first.
    EKSamLegoFanTexasDougout
  • EKSamEKSam Member Posts: 349

    A bath tub can hold a surprising amount of LEGO. Just make sure you close the drain first.

    @HokieJoe99 That's a new one:-) you get full marks for resourcefulness. :-)) I can imagine someone taking a gander at that tub. :-)

  • legomattlegomatt Member Posts: 2,548
    edited June 2013

    A bath tub can hold a surprising amount of LEGO. Just make sure you close the drain first.

    Now that's commitment.

    I don't just love Lego, I bathe in it!

    But caution: a brick stuck up the nose is the least of your worries. (there being other 'crevices' to worry about) LOL
    :oD
    LegobutterflyPenkid11
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 18,874

    A bath tub can hold a surprising amount of LEGO. Just make sure you close the drain first.

    And you can hide bodies underneath the lego too.

    Jonn420Penkid11
  • VenunderVenunder Nottingham, UK.Member Posts: 2,526
    I have considered various things and the only answer is to marry my daughter to some Oil rich Prince of Persia. Then I can use her room. :) :) :)
    Dougout
  • Lego_Lord_MayorcaLego_Lord_Mayorca H-Town, USAMember Posts: 565
    So, aside from a few large plastic tubs sitting on top of my bookshelves, my main Lego collection still resides in my simple closet. The stuff in the tubs is mainly BIONICLE canister sets, so everything that I ever got in Lego boxes is in my closet. I must be on some master-class box organization skills, because I have no idea how I've managed to get hundreds of sets, including some biggies like the SSD, Monorail Transport Base, and a couple of Modular buildings (for a small example sample). Truth be told, though, after last Christmas, I'm at the breaking point, too. Nothing is on display, but I have got to expand if I continue to collect at this pace.

    My solution? There is a hallway closet filled with winter coats. I'm thinking once those get cleared out, along with some other miscellaneous junk, I can start putting more of my sets in there. Therefore, I'll actually be able to use the floor in my personal closet again!
  • thorniethornie Member Posts: 245
    edited June 2013
    I ran out of room and just stopped buying. I really can't fit any more without being a prime candidate for the Hoarders TV show. You have to draw the line somewhere. I'm selling off a bunch of stuff I never opened, and consolidating my collection to only "must haves" (modulars, collectors series, large exclusives). I'm also focusing more on minifigs.
  • mutley777mutley777 Member Posts: 22
    This is becoming a major problem for me. I have 2 small loft/attic rooms full of Lego and now one of the small spare bedrooms is getting very full. I have started to look into a renting a storage unit for my more valuable sets. It has got so bad in the last 4 years I think I have only opened 100 sets out of about 500 bought. Most of those opened were Star Wars Battle packs and the only the figs were got out, the parts all just went in to large storage bins.
  • LegoMom1LegoMom1 Member Posts: 652
    ^@mutley777

    If you go with a storage unit, be sure it is climate controlled, otherwise you can have heat and humidity problems. Good luck.
  • dsdg88dsdg88 Member Posts: 133
    Facing the same problem. I've taken some sets apart, bagged them, and put them in storage boxes. I've thought about selling some of those but I don't know if my sons and I could agree on which to sell.
    What about breaking down sets and building up your inventory of bricks and parts? Even sorted that should take a lot less space.
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    Selling sets has turned out to be the only reasonable option for us.

    We first started off by taking sets apart, bagging them, and putting them into storage. But then it dawned on us that so many new sets are being made, when would we ever get them back out?

    Truth is, they would stay in storage for a long time, unless we plan to buy a second house to setup all the LEGO. :)

    So we are starting to sell them, starting with the big stuff, but even working down to the smaller sets, it is time to move on.
  • TheLoneTensorTheLoneTensor MericaMember Posts: 3,950
    edited June 2013
    mutley777 said:

    This is becoming a major problem for me. I have 2 small loft/attic rooms full of Lego and now one of the small spare bedrooms is getting very full. I have started to look into a renting a storage unit for my more valuable sets. It has got so bad in the last 4 years I think I have only opened 100 sets out of about 500 bought. Most of those opened were Star Wars Battle packs and the only the figs were got out, the parts all just went in to large storage bins.

    I can't help but think a storage unit solves nothing, but instead creates the illusion of "wow, look at all the space I now have to fill up with more fluff!" I think if you're considering a storage unit for anything*, Lego or otherwise, you've crossed a line that you should take a long, hard look at.

    I too have been leaning toward selling, sometimes painful selling, as the only way to go if I have any hope of continuing to enjoy new stuff coming out.

    * An exception would be if you are moving and are honestly using it for temporary storage. Even then, the forgetful power of "out of sight, out of mind" is tremendous.
  • binaryeyebinaryeye USMember Posts: 1,734

    We first started off by taking sets apart, bagging them, and putting them into storage. But then it dawned on us that so many new sets are being made, when would we ever get them back out?

    Well, you could dump several of the bags into one big pile and just build something. To me, that's a good part of the fun in LEGO. I understand LEGO is different things to different people, but if you're buying sets to only create the model(s) specific to that set, what is the point of buying LEGO instead of a static model or toy of the same subject?
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    ^ I find it very therputic to put together a LEGO model.

    Building a set like Town Hall isn't rocket science, but taking several days to stack the bricks and see what comes out of it, is very easy on the brain.

    I have no talent for MOCing or just free building, nor do I really have the time.

    My kids do it, but if we took everything apart and gave them the bricks, they would be overwhelmed with bricks. There is such a thing as too many bricks for kids. :)
    Oldfanlucianthorniegifinim
  • legocrazy1234legocrazy1234 Member Posts: 8
    I have over 900 sets not including many containers and tubs of loose lego.
    A big train town layout in our basement, bedroom full of modulars loft eaves corridor full of boxed sets and running out of room.
    I have all these idea's for dioramas i want o build but no space.
    Prob will sell some of the sets i am not so bothered about one day.
    Now i just leave everything unopened like all my super heroes sets because they are easier to store / stack.
  • nkx1nkx1 Member Posts: 719
    edited June 2013
    @tensor I've probably mentioned this a few times before, but I do a variation of your #1 suggestion. I buy whatever sets I want and build them (admittedly, I have quite a back log due to time constraints). Anyway, after I display and admire the set for a few weeks/months, I disassemble the set, box it up and into the closet it goes until EOL. I normally don't display more than one or two sets at a time, since that keeps the house nice and clutter-free. After EOL when it's likely worth a bit more, I sell the used set, normally for a profit since I virtually never pay full retail.

    Since I've wound down my reselling quite a bit, I have more room to store boxed disassembled sets until EOL. I have a good-size garage storage closet that is the perfect size for what I need. Since I sell every set I've built after EOL (which often takes no more than 2 years), my storage needs are reasonably limited.

    To address your concern about seller's remorse, I've had none so far. For example, I sold my personal copy of #10210 Imperial Flagship (probably my favorite set I've owned since getting back into Lego in 2011) and don't really miss it. Perhaps I'm less of a hard core Lego fan than some people here, but I know Lego is virtually always releasing something new and cool. For me, the excitement of new and upcoming sets pretty much mitigates any nostalgia that might creep in. It's actually sort of refreshing knowing that I'm able to keep the Lego hoarding (er, collecting) to a minimum.
    margot
  • BeavBeav Member Posts: 303
    I'm getting to the point where I've got too many sets to display all at once. The bigger or more display worthy sets like Hobbiton and ships like the X-Wing I will likely store whole to make room for new display sets, whereas others I am contemplating breaking up and just letting the little'un play with them however he wants, there's no point having them all in storage, so if I'm not getting any time or enjoyment out of them he should. Lego should be fun, so he can enjoy the bricks and let his imagination run wild.

    I'm not big on the sets as I just collect the minifigs, and the smaller sets don't fetch much if I were to resell them.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 18,874
    You could try this ...

    http://www.bricksetforum.com/discussion/10895/lego-tardis-tutorial#latest

    and see if you can get it to work.
    princedraven
  • TheLoneTensorTheLoneTensor MericaMember Posts: 3,950
    @nkx1
    Funny you mention #10210 because that's one of the particular sets that I have sitting in a box that I fear I'll really miss. That one's heading to the auction block soon.
  • AFFOL_Shellz_BellzAFFOL_Shellz_Bellz Member Posts: 1,263
    We are also running out of space. With a total of nearly 570 sq ft of dedicated Lego space one would not expect to run out of space quickly, but we seem to have! We display nearly all our sets except my Friends sets, of which only a few are on display in my computer room along with MMV. Not sure what we will do about it aside from being more selective on new purchases.
  • BrixyBrixy United statesMember Posts: 57
    I try to be really strict with myself as to just stuck to a couple themes, but it's hard. I live in a pretty small place so there just not much room. Once I buy it, I like to keep it. I have sets on display in rotation and rest in plastic storage containers. I try to keep myself out of the Lego aisle at the store so won't buy impulse sets. Works about 50% of the time.
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    I've begun selling off my other toys to display my Lego :D I've got 300 SW figures on blisters taking up all my wall space, and I'm finally dumping my comic collection in the closet so I can keep up my Lego set storage.

    It's a paradigm shift in the toy room, to be sure....
  • joel4motionjoel4motion United KingdomMember Posts: 959
    I have only really been buying since just before Xmas of last year and my loft is pretty full. I have a lot of the "big" sets, even 2 x DS and 2 x SSD take up quite a chunk of space.

    my only concern is that during the summer the loft is quite warm and I doubt that it is doing the MISB boxes any good. any tips for storing stuff, especially in the uk?

    I refuse to put stuff into storage, it will NEVER be used appreciated 10 miles away!
  • canon03canon03 USAMember Posts: 330
    I too am running out of space. I've got many many unopened sets waiting to be built and not enough display area.

    I like displaying the modulars with other city sets, but can't also display castle, pirates, etc. at the same time.

    I'm taking to heart earlier comments to sell the sets I don't care as much about or will likely never open.
  • iancam33iancam33 Member Posts: 407
    @tensor:NOOOOO!!!! you can't get rid of that set. That'd be like selling one of your kids. oh, wait bad example......I'd have no probs selling a kid if I had some......
  • mathewmathew Member Posts: 2,098
    I sold my Imperial Flagship earlier this year. I thought it would be tough, but honestly it wasn't as I didn't have any personal attachment to it.

    There are some sets though that feel more personal that I will keep. For example the futuron monorail that I just bought. It is a set that came out right as I was growing past Lego as a kid. I never owned it but I can imagine that if I were eight years old at the time it was released that it would of been my favorite set ever.
    aduk
  • DrmnezDrmnez USA, Planet earth Member Posts: 858
    I would recommend narrowing down what you want to collect.
    I only collect sw ucs, super heroes mf, some sw mf, scaled model builds, and certain cmf's and exclusives.
    Keeps tons of Lego from entering my house and I only get what I really want
  • chuxtoyboxchuxtoybox Member Posts: 711
    Suddenly the idea of renting Lego doesn't seem so crazy after all! My Lego room is completely unorganized right now and trying to sort it seems like an impossible task. I inherited a majority of my collection from my step daughter so it is mainly trying to find the component I'm looking for in all of these various tubs and boxes and canisters I have everything in that's driving me nuts!! I also have the sets that I have personally bought and assembled accumulating and just crammed all together on a shelf or balancing on one of the stacks of tubs or boxes or canisters... I've been thinking about taking apart the individual sets to rebuild later as has been mentioned. (Sometimes I have the crazy idea of taking them all apart and separating all of the bricks!) I enjoy putting the builds together though so I would think that rebuilding a set I hadn't seen for a while would be like seeing a good movie again or re-reading a good book, and with Lego you can build and rebuild, unlike model making with glue. And with the hundreds (thousands?) of choices you now have and are accumulating every day how could it ever get boring?
  • dejavudejavu USAMember Posts: 235
    @chuxtoybox - I too rebuild sets but when I do, I enjoy adding on to them or elaborating on the original set. Keeps the building experience fresh.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 18,874



    my only concern is that during the summer the loft is quite warm and I doubt that it is doing the MISB boxes any good. any tips for storing stuff, especially in the uk?

    I store lego boxes in the loft in Really Useful Boxes. But there is a limit to the number and size of the sets you can get into those, even the huge ones.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    ^+1 to RUBs, but if you join an 84L to a 50L or 64L (upside down) you can fit the biggest ones in. You can hold them together by drilling them and putting twisty wire things through the holes.
  • piratemania7piratemania7 New EnglandMember Posts: 2,124
    I'm buying a house later this summer and in the back yard there is a shed, which I am moving to the side and keeping, but making space so I can build an even bigger "shed". Except what I build will have insulation and electricity so I can store/build and manage my collection in there! Until I get the "man cave, AKA LEGO room" that I really want this will more than suffice.
    DougoutOldfanyys4u
  • skeet318skeet318 Banned Posts: 375
    This thread is depressing.....
  • TheLoneTensorTheLoneTensor MericaMember Posts: 3,950
    Reality can be depressing. It's really an effort to hear people's opinions on how they stay actively and currently involved in the hobby without being buried in bricks as a result.
    Eric
  • piratemania7piratemania7 New EnglandMember Posts: 2,124
    I know, imagine back in the 80's and 90's when it was just about the brick in front of you! Ha Ha, now we try to build actual storage because what we have isn't enough. : ( : ( : (
  • jasorjasor United StatesMember Posts: 839
    ^Dont be depressed! You have so much creative potential that it fills it's own space.
  • BastaBasta Australia Member Posts: 1,259
    As a kid growing up in the 80's I thought I had a good Lego collection, yeah not big but good. I still have it all and it doesn't even fill a 15 litre box :( storage was never an issue as kid.

    What I have added in the last 12 years though, well that's a different storey, a lot of it is still in sealed boxes in my 7x7 Meter shed as I don't have anywhere to display it all. I will be turning most of said shed into a nice lined an insulated Lego room at some point.
    LegoFanTexas
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