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"Help! I am moving to Europe!" Topic

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1,604 hits since 14 Dec 2015
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DestoFante14 Dec 2015 9:56 a.m. PST

I have a job offer in Switzerland, which I accepted. At the end of January, I will move, and my family will follow at the end of the school year. This is a longer term commitment, so I do expect to stay several years. Keeping my hobby stuff in storage is not an options. It is both exciting and terrifying in many regards, but it is definitely overwhelming as far as my toys are concerned.

I need to pack a fairly sized collection of 15mm miniatures, and I am not sure how to proceed. Mostly they are based in square bases of four (think Napoleon's Battles) or rectangular bases of two or three miniatures. I may wrap each base individually in bubble wrap, which would take a considerable time. Or I can use a mix of bubble wrap and packing peanuts. I am torn between my options. I am worried about bayonets and spears.

Did anyone ever experience a intercontinental move? Any recommendations or suggestions? Is there any alternative to packing peanuts? I'd love to use something smaller than the regular chips I commonly see in packages, but I could not find anything.

I would be extremely helpful for any tips! Thanks in advance!

Terrement Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 10:03 a.m. PST


WKeyser14 Dec 2015 10:07 a.m. PST

I moved to Denmark in 2005 and I used the puffed rice, not figure broken.


Rich Bliss Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 10:07 a.m. PST

I second the use of puffed rice. I actually did some experiments and the cereal was one of the best for protection and easily the cheapest.

Random Die Roll Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 10:08 a.m. PST

And a Second to that---

I have received packages with the puffed cereal packaging--protects the minis very well----and straight out to the birds with the cereal

DestoFante14 Dec 2015 10:08 a.m. PST

Can you recommend what puffed wheat or rice? Any brand? I am not too familiar with it… I would have gone for Rice Krispies…

Terrement Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 10:11 a.m. PST


GenWinter14 Dec 2015 10:18 a.m. PST

Recently, I have not been able to find any puffed wheat in the Denver area grocery stores, dollar stores or walmarts. I found organic puffed wheat but it is about $5.00 USD a pound and certainly not cost effective. I had to use generic rice crispies for the last two ebay sales of 28mm figures but the buyers reported it worked fine. I think it helps if you stick the stands down to the bottom of the box with tape (two sided is best but you can just fold over the tape if it is one sided) and then filling the box. Rice crispies are heavier per volume than Puffed wheat, which raises shipping costs slightly.

Personal logo Grunt1861 Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 10:24 a.m. PST

Puffed rice definitely. Would not recommend puffed wheat as it has a lot of the bran still attached. The bran tends to flake off. This is great for your regularity, but not so for miniatures. The only other item you might consider is bean bag chair filling, (small styrofoam balls). This would probably be more expensive than the puffed rice and a lot less green.

Personal logo Pictors Studio Sponsoring Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 10:46 a.m. PST

I would wrap each stand individually with toilet paper. It will take a while to pack it all up but if you do it correctly you will have no broken figures and plenty of TP for your new place.

You wrap the stands with the toilet paper supporting each figure and piece of figure. If you have 15s you can put two bases together base to base and wrap them like that. It is time consuming but if you do it while watching TV then it goes by pretty quickly.

gunnerphil14 Dec 2015 10:57 a.m. PST

Also make sure you insure them!

RavenscraftCybernetics Inactive Member14 Dec 2015 11:05 a.m. PST

think of this as an opportunity.
sell all your 15mm stuff them move to Switzerland and start collecting 28mm stuff.

Mick in Switzerland Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 11:26 a.m. PST

Where are you moving to? I am near to Aarau.

Personal logo Texas Jack Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 11:30 a.m. PST

Ha, ha, Ravenscraft is spot on! When I ran away from home I took my guitar and whatever I could fit into my old seabag. Everything else, including the minis, I either sold or gave away. Still miss some of that stuff though…

bsrlee14 Dec 2015 11:40 a.m. PST

I'd go with Pictors Studio – wrap each base or pair of bases in tissues or similar (some TP is like sand paper) then fill in with the puffed grain/pop corn/plastic foam peanuts to stop any sliding or tendency for the figure to all migrate to one end of the box.

If you are using a container moving service you may be able to pack the boxes of figures into a bigger ply box/ tea chest.

wrgmr114 Dec 2015 12:00 p.m. PST

I agree, puffed rice.
I received a shipment from someone in the U.S. who used Rice Krispies and they broke down creating a mess and breaking some figures as they jostled. It took a long time to brush off the Krispie dust.

Best of luck on the move and in your new job!

DestoFante14 Dec 2015 12:12 p.m. PST

@Mick -- Zurich. Where in Zurich, TBD.

Thanks, all. Puffed rice, as untreated as possible, seems to be the way to go. I am having a hard time finding Quakers, but the store across the street has Arrowhead Mills, which also seems to be basic puffed rice. Fingers crossed!

Buff Orpington Inactive Member14 Dec 2015 12:34 p.m. PST

Has anyone noticed that when the newer cellulose based packing material gets wet it smells exactly like puffed wheat?

Zargon Inactive Member14 Dec 2015 1:46 p.m. PST

Start packing and sending now might be a good idea find a cheap place in Zurich to store that makes your move less stressed (all your goodies are over there already :) so its just you and family to go :)
Good luck and happy adventures.
PS all else thanks for the puffed rice tip.

Personal logo Extra Crispy Sponsoring Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 3:52 p.m. PST

Lucky sod….

Use styrofoam pellets otherwise known as bean bag chair pellets.


olicana14 Dec 2015 3:56 p.m. PST

I paint figures for a living and, having spent my time and client cash doing so, packaging for postage is always a big thing I'm charging £7.50 GBP a mini so we are tending towards £1,000.00 GBP packages.

I pack in bubble wrap. I do not wrap individual figures. I do the layer cake system figures wrap x2 figures – wrap x2. The thing isn't the wrapping though, it's the tightness of the package. If the package does not rattle you will be fine. Pack tight no rattle, no rattle at all.

Good luck.

Personal logo Bashytubits Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 4:43 p.m. PST

Whatever Kroger chain is in your area will have puffed rice or wheat. Where I live it is Smith's.

zoneofcontrol Inactive Member14 Dec 2015 5:41 p.m. PST

May be dumb and not apply but just throwing this out there…

Are there any restrictions on imports to your new location? Many places ban, restrict or quarantine the import of food, plants, animals, etc. It was the other side of the globe but when my daughter traveled to Australia, she was warned more than once about not having food in her luggage. I'd hate for you and your minis to end up doing hard labor for packing your stuff in contraband.

I, too have received packages wrapped in puffed cereal and they always came out fine. Best wished for the relocation.

fredavner Supporting Member of TMP14 Dec 2015 7:22 p.m. PST

I agree with pictor's. Use soft TP to wrap base to base stands
Place x stands in a small box and then the small boxs in a larger box anchored by bubble wrap

The puffed stuff is a pain. Also depending on weight and bulk they tend to "swim" around the box….especially on a long trip with vibration during transit….

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP15 Dec 2015 3:19 a.m. PST

What a perfect time to go to Switzerland!

bobspruster15 Dec 2015 3:32 a.m. PST

I just got back from Lucerne. Beautiful spot, but the $20 USD, 9 inch pizzas were depressing.

RudyNelson15 Dec 2015 4:16 p.m. PST

When I was in the Army, I moved overseas and back. The shipping was a disaster to my collection. If I had to do it again, I would not ship them. I would use the return weight allowance to cover shipping new stuff that I would buy while there.

Of course to stop withdrawal, I would take some board games.

RudyNelson15 Dec 2015 4:16 p.m. PST

have fun. Enjoy the experience.

KazadHarri Inactive Member17 Feb 2016 11:54 a.m. PST

I just finished moving to Germany from the US, and I thought I did a good job packing my figures, but I did suffer some minor damage to some of my armies. The best ones where the ones packed in battlefoam, or chessex boxes. Next were bubble foam wrapped figures. The ones suffering the most were ones that I used foam peanuts, or other loose type packing material. I probably did not fill the boxes to the maximum extent possible, and during shipment some settling did happen, and those were the most damaged. Mostly just shields, or spears that got damaged. 28MM faired worse than 15mm. Hope this helps.

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