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"Effective "Give Away" Approaches for historical miniatures" Topic

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702 hits since 26 Oct 2017
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Early morning writer Inactive Member26 Oct 2017 3:46 p.m. PST

First, for those who are going to say "just pack it up and send it to me", sorry, but you're first off the list.

I have so many different historical periods in such quantities, all of it 15 mm (or 18 mm sometimes), that I've been considering either selling much of it or perhaps giving it away.

My question involves strategies to give things away without making some greedy person feel like they've put one over on me. While getting funds by selling things would be good, that process is too long and tedious and who knows if someone will want the figures. But free figures are likely to move much quicker.

So, any of you done such a thing, give away a lot of your figures to people who have a genuine need, people who want such figures but for whatever reasons genuinely cannot afford them? Or, maybe give to some young person old enough to appreciate what they receive?

A secondary concern is to get the figures into hands of people who would actually paint and use them. That side of the equation is probably a bit harder to achieve.

Appreciate constructive thoughts on how to make this happen.

Most of my local gaming friends already have more than enough for their personal needs and desires.


robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP26 Oct 2017 4:09 p.m. PST

I wish, for my own purposes, I had a really good solution.

School groups or groups who work with kids can absorb a lot of castings. For East, that would be the HAWKS.
In HMGS East, Moe the Great and the Toys for Tots program have been very helpful. I don't know whether either of these have equivalents in your area.
Flea markets will work, but price to sell--and mark it down again if the buyer is a kid.

Strongly recommend you not worry about whether the recipient is "greedy" or will "feel like they've put one over on me." You should be worried about the capacity of your basement and not the state of their souls. It's hard enough to get rid of lead without putting buyers through a catechism.

McKinstry Fezian26 Oct 2017 4:22 p.m. PST

When I moved to where I wanted to retire I streamlined/simplified my collections and that involved getting rid of a number of armies/navies/projects. I traded (at a huge discount) some or simply gave away others, all to gaming friends I knew would enjoy the figures/games. I picked who got what based on what they played, whether they painted or not and frankly, a bit of an opinion on economic situation. A friend that doesn't paint and has to watch his spending got a very favorable trade for one painted fleet and a full set of armies and terrain for a period he likes as a gift. Another that could afford to spend a bit got a very favorable price for a mostly unpainted mass. My bottom line was to treat each person as an individual case.

If you are near Fall In, the Moe the Great Toys for Tots thing is very worthy.

Personal logo Striker Supporting Member of TMP26 Oct 2017 4:36 p.m. PST

It seems that unless you personally know individuals who you'd be giving the items to, you're better off giving to some organization with at least some history. If the nature of the person is an issue you'll never know it, unless you know them.

Kevin C Supporting Member of TMP26 Oct 2017 5:13 p.m. PST

I am 49 years old and have been collecting miniatures since I was 12. I had miniatures from virtually every period that you could imagine -- from Ancients through modern. I decided in January, that I would concentrate on a few periods and so I have spent this year getting rid of 90% of my miniatures. I have used Noble Knight and have found them to be very easy to work with. It has been my experience that they will give you about 20% of retail value of the items that you sell. Given the amount and diversity of the items which I have sold or traded with them, it seemed fair. You may want to check them out: link


DisasterWargamer Supporting Member of TMP26 Oct 2017 5:55 p.m. PST

I worked with a local hobby store once – where they allowed me to sit and chat with people over a gaming table – gave away a few bundles for the holidays – hobby store got to pitch their paints and other accessories – they didnt sell historical minis – just GW stuff

Also had a few young veterans around and gave them some other stuff

kiltboy26 Oct 2017 6:21 p.m. PST

As others have said school groups are a goid choice. There is another person who's name I forget but he would run a summer camp for kids and would appreciate figures, half used paints and brushes. The kids painted the minis and kept them. I sent a handful of oaints and lost minis a couple of years ago.

The secong one you mention is easy just sell them as a lot and nobody is getting one over on you. Pick a price that is a bargain and let them go, whoever gets them will be happy enough. One daution however is that some will pick out according to their needs and sell/trade the balance. All that means is that individual is further spreading your good will to others wuthout you having to invest time doing so.

kiltboy26 Oct 2017 6:23 p.m. PST

Another thought would be a charity auction via ebay. That way the cash goes to help a charity of your choosing.

KSmyth26 Oct 2017 6:23 p.m. PST

I'm still a few years short of retirement, but the past few years I've given attention to my unpainted lead piles and tried to make sure I don't needlessly add to them. I've also parted with projects I was no longer using, or in the case of unpainted figures, those I was sure I wasn't going to get to. I thought about selling them in the annual NHMGS bring and buy, but I knew folks who would use them, and maybe wouldn't be able to buy them.

In the end the minis were a sunk cost and it made me happier to see someone else have them, use them and enjoy them, than to maybe get back a little bit of dough.

Personal logo sillypoint Supporting Member of TMP26 Oct 2017 7:50 p.m. PST

Contact reputable clubs, gameshops, youth centres. Get them to nominate someone for you.
Facebook group pages?
I've thought of using them as fundraising for charity. First prize 1 Greek Army, second prize 2 Greek armies….run an event at local club.

Early morning writer Inactive Member26 Oct 2017 7:59 p.m. PST

Thank you for all the constructive replies so far. Several years back I helped a deceased friends' family sell his collection and mostly it all went very well. But there was one "t*rd" who stole an army buy never returned to pay for it. And for the "get one over folks" its really folks here on TMP, a few who I couldn't begin to identify because I truly don't know who they might be, but who think they can hide behind the anonymity of the web. Of course, most people are above board, just want to avoid that lesser class of human.

It is a daunting task. Your thoughts help move the process forward. Feel to provide additional thoughts.

Personal logo The Tin Dictator Supporting Member of TMP26 Oct 2017 8:49 p.m. PST

There are clubs in your area.
Maybe contact one or more of them.
Or even the west coast HMGS chapter.

My kids have dibs on my collection.
Donating to an active club would be my 2nd choice.

whitphoto26 Oct 2017 9:32 p.m. PST

I had a bunch of novels I've read and can't manage to sell on eBay or here. I donated them to my club to sell at the yearly convention auction. Someone got a bunch of books cheap, my club got a couple bucks (probably literally) to keep running, I don't have the guilt of throwing perfectly good books in the recycle bin. Win win win…

korsun0 Supporting Member of TMP27 Oct 2017 3:00 a.m. PST

Another way, and lve done this, is just sell them and give the cash to a charity or similar of your choice. You dont have to say you are doing if for charity, put a realistic price on it and move isome that way..

surdu2005 Sponsoring Member of TMP27 Oct 2017 3:47 a.m. PST

You might consider what we in the HAWKs have been doing. Run games for kids at conventions and then let each kid take home enough to play with their buddies back home. For more information, please PM me.

wrgmr127 Oct 2017 8:14 a.m. PST

I agree with many posters here. School groups, long term organized groups and people like Moe the Great who does toys for tots. I painted up figures and sent them to him. He has a list of people who donated painted figures. I'm positive they would gladly receive figures and paint them for him. I would.

arthur181527 Oct 2017 3:09 p.m. PST

I've just given a lot of 54mm plastic figures my son and I used to play Little Wars with to a local charity shop and completed a form so it can reclaim 25% Income Tax back from the government. I hope some children will enjoy playing with them; the charity receives some money, and I have made extra storage space in my loft.

Ottoathome Inactive Member28 Oct 2017 7:23 a.m. PST

I used to give stuff away but only to people who already do the period the figures are in. Giving away to any other outlet is a waste of time and money. Most will try and sell them and most will just throw them away. This includes schools who don't know what to do with them. If you're giving away figures to try and engender an interest in war games to the uninterested, you might as well just throw them away yourself.

I knew a guy who gave away a collection of WWII british and German armies, about 200 figures and 40 tanks each to a guy who was interested and seemed to want to play. He hung around for a few games and played and then dropped out. Years later he met the guy and asked if he used the figures. The guy laughed and said "Nah, my kids used them as targets for their 22 cal guns." He thought it was a great joke.

I've carefully apportioned my stuff among my younger war gamer friends.

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