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Hey all. I'm getting to the point now where I've accumulated upwards of 6 armies and I'm trying to find good ways to store them. I'm not looking for portability so much as practicality given the limited space that I have and the sheer number of models. Right now, something like a bookshelf seems to make the most sense, as I'll want to easily access the models, preferably without having to pull out too much if I need to get to a specific model. I also wouldnt mind having them somewhat visible without moving too much around. Ideally in the future I'll have a garage or a basement that I can line with shelves or something, but for the moment I'm in a two bedroom apartment without a lot of budget or space.
What do you guys have for suggestions, and how do you store your models inbetween games? I'm interested with any responses, as at this point I'd mainly like to get some ideas going so I can stop looking all around my apartment asking myself "now where did I put that land raider?".
well a glass case is great, or a book shelf with many levels is also ideal, one thing i find convenient is cases, i have GW case, but tackle boxes will also work, they don't take up a lot of space as you can throw them in a closet, and i like it a bit more than a book shelf because if you have to move a whole army, like your going to the store or buddies place, everything is all right there and you don't have to take them out of a case or put them back in, so it's good to go right away.
purchase a "curio cabinet" it is a tall shelved space with 4 glass walls; mine has wood trim and glass shelves , and a lockable door--- its pretty old, but you can probably find a new one for 2-300 dollars in almost any furniture place.
Part of the reason I got into this hobby was the idea that I could build models and still have a use for them after I was done building and painting them, and NOT having to keep them on display. I find doing so (i.e., in a glass case) really won't work in my house because there's no room for that, and I wouldn't want to spend a lot of time dusting them (which I know I'd be doing). For me, I buy pluck-and-play foam inserts for all my minis as I buy and assemble the models anyway (how else will I get them to games?) so keeping them inside those is a no-brainer for me. Stacking those foam trays on a shelf, if you use them, seems the simplest answer. All you'd need to do is put something on top (a codex would do) to keep dust off the top layer.
If you want to display them, that's fine, but as I said, make sure there's room, and make sure you don't mind dusting them once a week, because no matter how nice a case you find, you'll need to go in and dust them from time to time.
Thanks for the replies.
It isn't so much that I want to have them "on display" but more that I want them accessible so I can grab them as I need them for painting and modeling. only about half of the models I have are painted, and I have quite a few that I work on in small amounts.
Coming to think of it though, from your suggestions I think it might be better to just get a lot of toolboxes or something to stow away the armies I'm not currently working on. I have one of the big GW miniature cases, but it generally is used only for when I'm taking an army off to play with. The more I think about it, it may make more sense to simply store everything and be organized about it until such time that I can devote an entire room to all of my assorted gaming doodads.
Again, I appreciate the responses.
Well, if you're looking for a cheap way to store your minis, what I've been doing for a few years now is using egg cartons... you can get a 15-egg tesco value carton for a pound or 2, eat the eggs, and bingo, you get a free case that can hold 15 models, even 30 if you're clever.
I have stacks of egg cartons stored in cardboard boxes, tucked discretely under my bed. unfortunately i have to conceal all my models, as you never know when you'll be bringing a lady friend over unexpectedly... forget you left your models out and that could lead to an uncomfortable situation....
Anyways it's funny you mention this now as I finally caved and just bought a nice big sabol motor pool case, which can hopefully store all my models with a little more class than old boxes and egg cartons and stuff.
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Getting off topic, the women in my life really don't mind me playing with "little toy soldiers". My last gf even got so curiuos about it she went so far as to paint some old minis i had. My current gf also really likes the artistic aspect of it, she always wants to see my minis when im done painting one. Actually, its kind of a motivation to paint for me. I just paint when she is asleep or at work, this way it doesnt take time away from us. She is 10 years older than me and doesnt think im immature at all for playing wargames.
On topic, I think the egg carton idea is a little desparate. Really, look up Plano brand cases. They are like 2-3 US dollars and you can get enough of the cotton padding to last you your lifetime for like $5. They also make a big tackle box that is like 2.5 feet high that you can put 3 of the normal size boxes in the bottom and it has a top hatch that you can put like 3 tanks/mounted heroes on dragons etc. and 3-4 dreadnaught/avatar sized models. When I go to a game I just fill this up with the army I'm using and it is usually enough storage space for the army and codex and rules and dice/templates I need as well.