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What do you do with your 'spare' parts

snowhitiesnowhitie BelgiumMember Posts: 3,053
So in the 'Lego status' topic there has sprouted a disussion about what you do with the spare parts. I agree with @xwingpilot that this merrits it's own thread. I couldn't really find one that existed so I've started a new one.

Things that have been said (I can't really put the conversations in - I think that's only Mods who can do that, but anyway, here is the summary)

I'm also not sure if I'm impressed or frightened at how full the glass canister I've been pouring the spare bits included with each set into has been getting. There's a nice spare green dragon wing sitting in it too, looks pretty sinister.

^You don't keep the extra parts with each set? My brain would explode because of my OCD.

ha. my one was getting so BIG. that i split it in to a tray that i picked up from The entertainer. for £1. well i say 1 tray it took 2 of them. and i have already had to move some stuff, (1x1 studs.) up to a Tub. a 600ml tub. that is half full. 
i still have the tub i was using to keep them in. and i use it still for the spare bits of set's i just got down building and have yet to place in there right home. 

Pitfall69 said:
^You don't keep the extra parts with each set? My brain would explode because of my OCD. 
God no. If the part is not an actual listed piece of the set, it cannot be with the set or it will drive me crazy because it is not as intended and is liable to get lost. I also don't need little baggies of pieces that go with a billion different sets hanging around, because clutter. The only allowances I have made/will make are the little 1x1 rounds that go on the christmas trees/strings of lights in the Winter Village sets. Otherwise it goes in the glass jar. If I ever need a spare, I know where to find it.

I started off like @pitfall69 with little ziploc bags of spares per set. But I could not withstand their lovely sirene-call, telling me to use them.
So now I actually have a box of spares, then whenever we've built some stuff I check the new spares with what I've already got in my box. If I have it, it gets sorted into the bricks for moc-ing. We're pretty careful with our stuff so I'm assuming one spare piece of each is enough, and anyway even if it gets used in a MOC you can still get at it if absolutely necessary.
Except the missiles, I  keep them all safe.

God no. If the part is not an actual listed piece of the set, it cannot be with the set or it will drive me crazy because it is not as intended and is liable to get lost. I also don't need little baggies of pieces that go with a billion different sets hanging around, because clutter. The only allowances I have made/will make are the little 1x1 rounds that go on the christmas trees/strings of lights in the Winter Village sets. Otherwise it goes in the glass jar. If I ever need a spare, I know where to find it.
...but wait; those parts ARE listed on either the box or the instructions of newer sets. It seems to me that you will have incomplete sets just lying around the house ;)

You're going to be horrified to learn the only set that I keep out is my lavender Market Street because I've made so many modifications to make it fit in better with other modulars that I'm afraid to take it apart for fear of forgetting what's what :P

I don't think spare pieces are listed on the box or in the instructions. the only place where I've seen them listed is bricklink.
I think an exception may be those extra missiles and studs for stud shooters.

This probably warrants a thread of it's own!
Myself, I have ziploc bags of extra parts for the big sets (UCS etc), but the extra parts for smaller sets get donated to my daughter :)
Here's an example of what gets stored with the box of a UCS set:

So now, everyone is up to date, let's discuss!


  • chrisalddinchrisalddin UKMember Posts: 3,022
    good idea.

    i bet there are also some good story's on this subject to.
  • PeteMPeteM Gallifrey (near Bristol)Member Posts: 431
    I used to try and sneak them into a hidden area of the set in order to keep everything together and, where this wasn't possible, I put them in a dump bin in my pieces racks. I realised about a year ago that there was no sense in running two systems and besides, I needed some for MOCs, so now everything goes in the dump bin. The exception are those relating to Creator 3-in-1 sets where they're used in the alternate builds, they still get hidden.

    Once I begin my master plan of breaking down all my sets and parting them all out for proper MOC fodder then it won't matter, but until I take that plunge then a disorganised drawer will have to do :)
  • tecjamtecjam Germany / SwitzerlandMember Posts: 255
    It depends on the set. Small sets like creator or microfoghters or anything less than 1000 pcs I just stick in a 'to sort' bag, which will be sorted into my lego drawers sometime later.

    Large sets I keep the extra parts in a zipper bag with the manual in Really Useful Storage Boxes (4 or 9C) - the boxes I fold and store in a xxl zipper bag.
  • YodaliciousYodalicious DagobahMember Posts: 1,366
    All dumped in the "to be sorted" bin. 
  • xwingpilotxwingpilot UKMember Posts: 797
    I also have a Realy Useful Box containing parts for display stands (bought separately) that I keep next to my display shelves.
  • AllBrickAllBrick UKMember Posts: 1,477
    edited April 2016
    They get assimilated into the mother load and eventually sorted.
  • SprinkleOtterSprinkleOtter Member Posts: 2,751
    I try to use them to improve the set in some small way. Say a spot that looks a little lacking- throw in a cheese slope, and it looks better.
  • snowhitiesnowhitie BelgiumMember Posts: 3,053
    This is my selection of extra parts I keep. I like looking at all the different colours ;)

  • Bricklover18Bricklover18 PA, USAMember Posts: 720
    With the architecture sets I buy I keep them in the box, everything else goes in an old bionicle canister. 
  • catwranglercatwrangler Northern IrelandMember Posts: 1,890
    I like to stick them onto the model somewhere fitting, and if there's no way to do that or it would look weird, they tend to hang around until I'm putting the model away. I like to put them away together even though the ultimate destiny of every Lego piece I get is to be sorted out into different containers by type...
  • willobee498willobee498 CanadalandMember Posts: 349
    I have a buuunch of clear plastic bins i put dismantled sets in, broken up by themes. A bunch of City, a bin for all the minifigs, bins for action themes, etc. I have one bin for random stuff that doesnt fit in a current themed bin, and isn't starting a new bin. The spares all get dumped in that.
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO Chicagoland USMember Posts: 10,154
    I used to try to keep them with the set, but really is it just a bit silly and adds more resources to bagging the instruction books and keep spares in there (for me) They typically go into one tray/bin, if not sorted. I tend to keep the new color shades out of most of my bins so as to not confuse myself (or worse yet use those in place of an 'original' part) when rebuilding an older set that did not use those shades.
  • TheOriginalSimonBTheOriginalSimonB Felixstowe Member Posts: 1,644
    Mine just go into the appropriate sections of my storage boxes.  Then used when building something else when the mood strikes.
  • BrikingBriking Dorset, UKMember Posts: 762
    Into the spares.
  • mmozzanommozzano UKMember Posts: 413
    Mine just get dumped into the box of mixed Lego my kids use.
  • snowhitiesnowhitie BelgiumMember Posts: 3,053
    edited April 2016
    Thanks @CCC I looked but didn't find it - I did skim through about 660 topics with the words spare parts :)
  • KingAlanIKingAlanI Rochester, NYMember Posts: 2,141
    I put them on BrickLink except for a few specific parts I want for my own MOCs or stockpile. It seems like a waste to save parts I don't need, especially those in new condition.
  • oldtodd33oldtodd33 Denver 4800 miles to BillundMember Posts: 2,611
  • matticus_bricksmatticus_bricks Member Posts: 651
    IMO if it's extra, it isn't part of the set. I usually pile my extras somewhere in my workspace (if I'm in a period for building a lot of sets, and feeling lazy) and then they all get sorted into the main collection. I have an absurd amount of trans-red 1x1s. 
  • SirBenSirBen In the Hall of the Mountain KingMember Posts: 585
    Most of mine get sorted, or at least put in a baggie with other spares to sort. For some reason the spare pieces and brick separator from the Brick Bank ended up in the vault. 
  • OldfanOldfan Chicagoland, IL, USAMember Posts: 674
    I'm primarily a set collector, so the spare parts get stored in the original box in a separate zip-lock baggie (only for new sealed sets; if I'm buying used I don't bother with trying to get all the spares that may or may not have been packaged with the set).

    My 4-year-old takes the opposite approach: she uses all the spare flowers, 1x1 round plates, etc. and uses them to add greebling to her sets.  And those Disney Princess sets have TONS of extra flowers, 1x1's, bows, tiaras, etc., so her sets look quite a bit different from the pictures on the box.  Which is cool...
  • GallardoLUGallardoLU USAMember Posts: 644
    I store them with other similar parts and use them as ideas appear. for example R2-D2 server droid: a Pair of Golem's arms, a straight droid arm, a bent droid arm, 2 tee-handles, and a gear shifter. much better than the version Lego keeps releasing

  • klatu003klatu003 Hobbiton, Shire, Middle EarthMember Posts: 725
    The extra parts are put in a baggie with the set number and name and placed in the extra parts box.  When the set is disassembled and put into baggies and stored the extra parts baggie is added.  This way when I rebuild the set I have the parts that I missed in the first build, or lost in the process.  
  • mustang69mustang69 North CarolinaMember Posts: 535
    Like others here the extra parts I get go into my MOC supplies. For me, the only reason to keep the extras separate is if I wanted to keep a set "complete" for later sale but since I have no intention of selling my sets I dont see the need.
  • MrShinyAndNewMrShinyAndNew Member Posts: 281
    Once a set is disassembled the entire set is "spare parts"... is it not?
  • natro220natro220 USAMember Posts: 545
    Once a set is disassembled the entire set is "spare parts"... is it not?

    A lot of people keep their sets separated from one another (I used to, but am just completing integrating all my parts together).  It's so much easier to MOC with all my parts where I can find them.  If I want to build a particular set, it's not that hard to piece it together.

    So regarding where my "spare parts" go, they go with their corresponding part type in their proper drawers.

  • MattDawsonMattDawson Solihull, UKMember Posts: 1,288
    Depends on the set and my purpose. If it's to keep it complete (or complete as possible after building it) the 'spares' go into one of the parts bags and carefully folded and returned to the box whence it came, along with the instructions and set, although the latter is broken into chunks that actually fit the box...
  • SteinerSteiner GermanyMember Posts: 4
    I store them in a separate container with the devious plan to one day build a microscale city that consist entirely of spare parts: Spare City! (Although I have to say that a little more diversity would be welcome, it'll be interesting to see what I can cook up with all them nasty 1x1s and cheese slopes.)
  • Bricklover18Bricklover18 PA, USAMember Posts: 720
    Mine get thrown in an old bionicle is almost full.
  • monstblitzmonstblitz Hornell, NYMember Posts: 632
    Separate draws in one of my part racks.  They are very helpful whenever I try and reassemble an old set missing tons of little parts, or trying to find spares for used sets bought off Ebay or Craigslist.  Problem is the kids are attracted to these drawers of tiny colorful pieces and are constantly taking them out and dumping them!
  • SteinerSteiner GermanyMember Posts: 4
    Ugh, kids and Lego! It's the worst! Total mayhem. I can barely keep my 4-year-old out of the Lego room. Got to ... protect ... those bricks ... :)
    In all seriousness though, I'm starting to feel more and more like Lord Business himself.
  • masterX244masterX244 GermanyMember Posts: 530
    for me they end up in a temporary box until the set is built completely (incase i need one of the spares for a weird reason). when the set is done they end up in my "sort-me" box
  • OrmskirkBricksOrmskirkBricks England, UKMember Posts: 265
    Well, I do three things...

    The box is carefully cut with a craft knife down the glue seam, and flat packed! That way, with a bit of glue I can re-make the box like new!

    The spare parts, including used sticker sheets, minifig cape boxes etc are put in a grip-seal bag, umbered and stored in a large storage box.

    The manuals are stored in a second large plastic storage box to keep them flat.

    I have a problem. I am AFOL.
  • josekaleljosekalel Rio Grande Valley, TexasMember Posts: 681
    Since I haven't built that many sets lately, whatever comes extra/spare goes into a red LEGO bucket #4128 that I got a while ago. Whenever I start building more, they'll still go into that bucket. 
  • GeordiePaulGeordiePaul Glastonbury, CT, USAMember Posts: 599
    @OrmskirkBricks A problem? Nah, it's all part of our unique AFOL magnificence. We're dedicated, obsessive and a bit mental, but what we do is harmless and lots of fun. If your system of storage works for you and makes you happy then it's hardly a problem :-)
  • chrisalddinchrisalddin UKMember Posts: 3,022
    my spare parts are now in the what i am calling "the tower of parts"
    i would take a image. but right now my cam has gon on a walk about and i no idea ware it is and i dont feel like turning my room upside down to find it. 
  • tallblocktootallblocktoo CanadaMember Posts: 497
    edited August 2016
    ^I think its in the tower of parts.
  • starwars4everstarwars4ever The Forest Moon of EndorMember Posts: 489
    Into a ziploc bag you go...
  • ryjayryjay Member Posts: 1,001
    edited August 2016
    "I put them in should get a bowl"
                                                       -Sheldon Cooper
  • SumoLegoSumoLego New YorkMember Posts: 14,224
    Mine get thrown in an old bionicle is almost full.
    Gonna need a bigger Bionicle.
  • xwingpilotxwingpilot UKMember Posts: 797
    Since my original comment I now keep all my spare parts in a gripseal bag. That change of approach did require me to use Bricklink to help me retrieve the spares from smaller sets that had been thrown in with my daughter's LEGO though :-s

    OCD kicking in again there (although it could be worse - at least I don't store the spares for each set in separate bags)...
  • PaperballparkPaperballpark Near ManchesterMember Posts: 4,083
    They're crunchy when sprinkled on cereal ;)
  • brumeybrumey AustriaMember Posts: 1,002
    i sort them into my extensive parts collection
  • ricecakericecake Maryland, USAMember Posts: 879
    at least I don't store the spares for each set in separate bags
    This is what I do... though I was thinking of cataloging them in a spreadsheet or something and then putting them all into one bag.
  • legobodlegobod CA USAMember Posts: 316
    Maybe we can start sending them to TLG for a 10c refund on each piece ;)
  • starwars4everstarwars4ever The Forest Moon of EndorMember Posts: 489
    legobod said:
    Maybe we can start sending them to TLG for a 10c refund on each piece ;)
    If it was from a Star Wars set we could easily get a 15 cent refund on each piece! ;)
  • gratefulnatgratefulnat SwitzerlandMember Posts: 329
    edited August 2016
    I don't do anything with my spares.
    The horny little buggers just keep procreating all by themselves...

    And I thought kids were expenesive... spares are worse by far ;-)
  • boadboad United KingdomMember Posts: 22
    My spares go into a box. Will probably use them in a few MOCs
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