The Waving Flag: New Storage

Sunday 17 October 2021

New Storage

Ever since I returned to wargaming in the 1990s I've used metal toolboxes to store and transport my finished armies.

When I started I used to take an army, in its toolbox, into Liverpool on the train or in the car.  So the boxes are all lined with heavy duty magnetic vinyl to stop the metal based figures moving around in transit.  This approach has served me well for decades but it's time to move on.

The reasons for the change are many:

  • Ever since I started playing Art de la Guerre (ADLG) I've not used a toolbox to transport an army to a game or tournament.  The armies are that much smaller they easily fit into Really Useful Box and are a lot lighter.
  • After decades of painting I have 10, yes 10, toolboxes and more importantly they take up a lot of floor space.  I've only really got room for 3 or 4 underneath my painting desk so the rest cluster around one end of my desk; it's far from ideal.
  • The toolboxes attract a lot of dust and my wife doesn't like moving them around to dust and to vacuum the carpet.  When full the toolboxes are very heavy.
  • Sometime ago I "streamlined" the contents of the toolboxes and placed the excess bases in cardboard boxes in a cupboard.  The "excess" are mainly esoteric options or leftovers from DBMM lists.  Even so this is a classic case of "out of sight out of mind".
  • The tipping point came yesterday: I finally managed to find a Bisley cabinet.  I've been looking on eBay for ages and finally found one that was being thrown out (more about this later).

All told things were getting out of hand.  Then yesterday I got lucky.

Mixing both my hobbies
I am a season ticket holder at my local non-league football club (Warrington Town) and yesterday I managed to combine my wargaming hobby and watching football.

I went to watch Warrington play Whitby Town and at half time noticed that the club shop had thrown out a 15 drawer Bisley cabinet.  The shop had been refitted and it was going to be left outside to rot.

I asked if I could have it and they said yes.  All I had to do was get it home.  I'd had a couple of pints (as you do) so the car was not an option.  What to do?  I called my wife and (bless her) she walked to the ground (just over a mile) with the frame from her shopping trolley.  At full time we used it to push the cabinet home!  What a sight we must have been; two "rinklies" (old people) pushing a filing cabinet on a makeshift trolley.

On Saturday night I spent a happy half an hour removing all sorts of labels and the residue from previously removed labels with various solvents.  It has cleaned up really well.  There are some chips on the corners but nothing serious.  Overall it's in decent shape.  It was polished this morning.

Sunday morning sort-out
I had enough magnetic vinyl to line about half a dozen draws.  So I spent a pleasant couple of hours transferring the contents of one toolbox and two cardboard boxes to three draws.  I didn't realise how many Mongol figures and assorted allies I have!

I also filled one draw with my growing medieval Russian army and one draw with my small WWII, ACW & Napoleonic collections.  This emptied a toolbox and a cardboard box.

After that I stopped.  The next collection to tackle will be my medieval Polish & Lithuanians but I'll save that pleasure for another day.

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