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"Miniature Display Cases." Topic


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5,833 hits since 23 Nov 2008
©1994-2017 Bill Armintrout
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maninthemoon Inactive Member23 Nov 2008 2:54 p.m. PST

I am looking for ideas on either buying or making some miniature display cases.

Does anyone have some good ones that they can recommend?

I do carpentry/cabinet making and could build some if it comes down to it.

What would be an ideal size, shelf spacing, glass door, etc???

Just curious what everyone's input is?

Sean in California

christot23 Nov 2008 3:21 p.m. PST

Do you have Ikea stores in CA.? They make some with internal lighting which would be hard to make oneself for the money.

this is the uk catologue

link

maninthemoon Inactive Member23 Nov 2008 3:47 p.m. PST

Hello christot,

Thanks for link. Yeah, we have Ikea here. There is one about 20 minutes north of here. Thanks for the suggestion.

I have 3 styles of display cases at home, but they are small ones that I picked up in an antique shop that is presently out of business.

All of the cases have disadvantages and advantages to their design when considering miniatures. My 10 year old son is starting a miniature collection and beginning to paint, so I was thinking of either buying or making him some cases for his room.

I have been doing woodworking for over 20 years and could build about anything, but there is the time and $ element.

Thanks for your idea,
Sean in California

donlowry23 Nov 2008 4:12 p.m. PST

But if his dad made it for him, it'd mean more!

Seriously! I have a few things my late step-father made that are priceless (to me).

Pat Ripley Fezian23 Nov 2008 4:13 p.m. PST

what scale figures do you have? 1/32 tanks need a fair bit of room as do the larger 28mm plastics from gw

are you going to light it? glass shelves allow you to see the figures at the back but are more expensive and easier to break

will you be putting terrain in the cupboard? more space needed again…i tend to put terrain at top or bottom because its more easily seen than figures which i prefer at eye height

do you have small people who might break low glass or are
you an older person who just can't bend down as far as the younguns? my ideal cases have cupboards at the bottom and glass top

donlowry23 Nov 2008 4:44 p.m. PST

Hmmm. Yes. Glass at the top for the stuff you're proud of, and cupboards at the bottom for the so-so stuff.

fredjg23 Nov 2008 4:51 p.m. PST

If you've been woodworking for 20 years, you will not be happy with Ikea, except as an offset to the time factor.

Ikea is basically a thin, formica veneer over particle board. Prone to chipping, before you can get it home.

Pat Ripley Fezian23 Nov 2008 5:29 p.m. PST

What would be an ideal size, shelf spacing, glass door, etc???

My 10 year old son is starting a miniature collection and beginning to paint, so I was thinking of either buying or making him some cases for his room.

how big is the room? how many figures? does it have to match other furniture or can it be utalitarian and don't bother with doors as he'll likely put anything in there (including rocks and bits of paper shaped like little bananas.)

377CSG23 Nov 2008 6:45 p.m. PST

My display case is basically a frame for thick glass. Mine is 7 feet tall by 4 feet wide. There are 8 glass adjustable shelves with the bottom shelf wood. The top of the cabinet has 3 small lights shinning down from the wooden roof.

The sides are glass with a wood frame and the front is one piece solid glass with groves in the bottom wood part, so you can slide it to one side, to load the shelves.

The back wall is solid wood and I put background scenery, depending on the figures. Also, you can't put a solid ground layer, on any of the shelves, as it would block the light for those underneath.

Aggie 21 Inactive Member23 Nov 2008 7:50 p.m. PST

I agree with donlowry. If you have the skill to make the cabinet for your son, do it. I have a cabinet that my Dad made for me as a boy for my Britains etc. I still have it and my Mom asked about it today as a matter of fact. It still looks great and I would not part with it for anything.This will be a good memory for him someday.

donlowry23 Nov 2008 9:37 p.m. PST

Yay! Someone agrees with me! (marking this day on the calender…)

asa1066 Inactive Member24 Nov 2008 6:47 a.m. PST

I've actually been pretty happy with my Billy bookshelf with glass doors from Ikea. I'm probably going to pick up a couple of extra shelves for it soon. It's one of the skinny ones as I don't have a lot of room in my apartment for displaying things and it has to compete with a half dozen bookshelves with actual books on them. Then again, I have no experience with carpentry, and probably couldn't saw my way out of a wet paper bag.

One thing I have done is pick up one of those wooden frames with little cubbies in it that are used to display small knick nacks. It sits at the back of the bookshelf and greatly increases the carrying capacity of that shelf.

David S.

nycjadie Inactive Member24 Nov 2008 7:25 a.m. PST

I have a wall mounted CD case from Ikea (actually 4 of them). I can't recall the silly name they give it, but it has 10 shelves. Really nice as it's only 5-6 inches deep.

doublesix6624 Nov 2008 9:40 a.m. PST

I've made a couple.

See here

link

The Doors are actually Picture fames made to size an glass put in them.

Thieses Inactive Member24 Nov 2008 9:42 a.m. PST

I own three of the IKEA display cases christot mentions. I bought my third one about a month ago for about $60. USD While the wood is just pressboard with a veneer as fredig stated, they are very cost effective. I store my Godzilla collection and some of my miniatures in them.

Ditto Tango 2 1 Inactive Member24 Nov 2008 11:15 a.m. PST

I have been doing woodworking for over 20 years and could build about anything, but there is the time and $ element.

Sean, I am not a very good handyman of any sort (last year, I fell through my ceiling when I was up in the attic rewiring my kitchen!). However, in my wargaming room, I was able to put together a very nice shelving unit 14 feet long, with four shelves and Plexiglas sliding doors for under 200 bucks using 9" pine planks which I primed and painted afterward. At the bottom are a number of open shelves over which I drape cloth to cover up the forces that are laid out for each game and there's lots of room on th very top shelf (I used 14" pine for part of the top) for scenery items. There was enough wood left over to make some open shelves on another wall with sort of curved corners (I used a coping saw, I'm afraid). I was in the habit of measuring once and cutting twice which meant more wastage than I should have had, but the whole project cost me less than $300 USD Canadian and it's not a bad set up if I do say so myself.
--
Tim

maninthemoon Inactive Member24 Nov 2008 6:13 p.m. PST

Thanks Everyone For the Ideas…

This site is really great for that.
In my sleep, I came up with some ideas.

I am going to pick up some nice, plain 16 x 20 inch picture frames with a simple, medium walnut finish. I will make some wood support strips to nail in behind the glass.

Then, I will build a box to attach to it. I will cross cut the inside of the box at regular intervals to house 28mm figures. Then, I can insert glass shelves where ever I want.
That way, I can accommodate giants, ents, mounted figures, etc.

I will probably cut a groove near the back of the box also to house a mirror for backing to add more light and to show the back of the figures. Then, I will nail and glue on a backing of thin wood door skin also for extra protection.

I will post some pictures when I get done and try to write up some plans for anyone that has a table saw and wants to attempt it.

Take Care and Have a Great Week Everyone,
Sean in California.

I busted it getting my teaching credential a couple months ago, and, now, our economy is going to HELL. Figures, with my timing. Ha ha.

Pat Ripley Fezian24 Nov 2008 7:13 p.m. PST

link

some more ideas there

The Billy cases are sold here in Oz and i've long eyed them off but the cost always held me back.

Robert le Diable Inactive Member25 Nov 2008 11:24 a.m. PST

You might also like to consider placing mirrors at the back of shelving, since this obviously would allow the back of figures to be seen (as well as making the collection look instantly twice the size).

Lord Ashram25 Nov 2008 2:16 p.m. PST

Here on my blog is a link to a company that sells good shelves… give it a look!

link

MelEbbles Inactive Member25 Nov 2008 3:03 p.m. PST

Oh, good, you fellas saved me the trouble of starting this thread myself. My office's too full of work stuff for me to leave my painting projects all over the place, and packing up my figures between painting sessions doesn't do anything for my motivation to get them finished. (Out of sight, out of mind!)

Ashram--thank you for the link! I found the curio cabinet that you have, and it looks like it'll meet my needs nicely.

-Mel

maninthemoon Inactive Member25 Nov 2008 5:20 p.m. PST

and packing up my figures between painting sessions doesn't do anything for my motivation to get them finished. (Out of sight, out of mind!)
**********************************
Also, it is great to see your handiwork on the wall.
Sean in California

MelEbbles Inactive Member25 Nov 2008 5:47 p.m. PST

Good point…I forgot about that side effect. I actually finished an entire Eldar army back in 1998 or so, because it was displayed on top of a bookcase. Every time I finished an unit, it went on top of the bookcase, and that made painting exciting because I wanted to see the rest of the army up there.

I'm currently slogging my way through 20 Genestealers and 10 Terminators (rebuilding my Space Hulk collection, no thanks to a psycho relative), and it took me a few months to actually get around to painting them because they were packed away in the closet for want of display space. If I had someplace nice to display them, I'd be more motivated to finish the whole lot and get 'em all on display. Right now I'm sort of on the fence--on one hand, I want to finish them, but on the other hand, I'm a bit apprehensive because there's nowhere permanent to put the things besides back in their boxes. grin

Ordinarily, I'd have just left them in the boxes, but experience has taught me that when I have the urge to paint, I'd better make the most of it before it wears off. Otherwise, it might be months before the urge resurfaces.

-Mel

Muskie Inactive Member05 Dec 2008 4:29 p.m. PST

I got one of those lighted Ikea cases and it is better than keeping them in their case or putting them on a shelf where they will ultimately get covered in dust. I plan to buy two more to house my current painted collection plus have some room for future expansion.

They are mostly glass with metal doing the supporting, the top and bottom are vinear press board, but they are convient. I'm a decent woodworker, but I live in an apartment in the city so Ikea though ubictuous is an easy option, my living room looks like it is out of the Ikea catalogue Fight Club style.

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