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Last weekend we made the decision it was time to move to a different house. When we moved 11 years ago I used Rubbermaid tubs to store most of the trains and I'm wondering if there might be any more efficient storage ideas out there. 90% of my locomotives and cars have boxes but most of my buildings are loose.

Thanks for your ideas.

Last edited by jlm1973
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Depending if you are lifting and pushing the boxes to move or if you're going to have movers do the work, go to your local storage facility and buy a bunch of wardrobe boxes.  The tall ones used for long garments and coats.  They were great for boxed passenger cars and rolling stock and they held a lot.  For your loose buildings, locomotives and cars, wrap them in heavy moving paper and move them yourself if you're not going too far.  If they need to be loaded on a truck, wrap them up and put them in smaller boxes and mark them as a "top load".

For the boxed locomotives, the large plastic tubs with cushioning inside around the boxes will work.  You don't want much bigger than that so they won't be too heavy.  We moved the trains across country this way with no damage.

WARNING

DO NOT ALLOW ANY MOVERS TO PACK YOUR TRAINS.  AND DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO REPACK ANYTHING YOU HAVE PACKED AND ARE HAPPY WITH.

They did that to my stuff, and although nothing was damaged, three years later now I still can't find some of the track pieces.  I had everything packed so I could easily locate everything and when I wasn't looking they took apart some of my packing and combined it with items from other rooms.

Good luck with your move!!  I hope it goes smooth and you're up and running trains again soon!!

Excellent advice from traindiesel above, especially if you're planning to unpack shortly after the move.  Additional things to consider if the storage will be longer term are protection from the elements, stackability, and ability to identify the contents.

I like the weathertight plastic totes for trains that I take to shows - they're pretty rigid, seal tightly, and are semi-transparent.  However, they can get pricey, but shopping around can reduce the cost.  Many of the cheaper plastic totes will buckle when stacked and don't offer great protection.   

@Traindiesel posted:


WARNING

DO NOT ALLOW ANY MOVERS TO PACK YOUR TRAINS.  AND DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO REPACK ANYTHING YOU HAVE PACKED AND ARE HAPPY WITH.

This is worth repeating, almost without fail you will pack far better than movers!

This goes for shipping stuff with FedEx or UPS as well, do NOT let them pack the stuff for you!  I've seen more damage with stuff packed by shippers than if packed by the owners.

Last edited by gunrunnerjohn
@Traindiesel posted:

WARNING

DO NOT ALLOW ANY MOVERS TO PACK YOUR TRAINS.  AND DO NOT ALLOW THEM TO REPACK ANYTHING YOU HAVE PACKED AND ARE HAPPY WITH.



From the Department of Redundancy Department - let me repeat, repeat, repeat Traindiesel's excellent advice.

I have packed and moved all my train related items with one exception - the large bridge.  And that was packed in a special crate constructed by the moving company's owner himself.  That only reason for that is that I have used this moving company 3 times.  They are trustworthy; the owner is a man of his word.  If you want their name, e-mail me.  Their business model is:

  1. They pack your belongings for you - carefully.
  2. They load the truck(s).
  3. You rent and drive the truck(s).  Typically, a box truck (28') is fairly easy to drive.
  4. They unload the truck(s).

This approach saves you money (because you're not paying a traditional moving company's expensive rate/pound/mile) and aggravation (because they do the grunt work of packing, loading, and unloading).

OK, for the buildings (and I saw this in another magazine):

  1. Fasten down the building to a base
  2. Put up some stiff sides around the building (higher than the building)
  3. Put it inside a box.

This will protect each building.

Best of luck with your move.

George

I am getting ready to move within the next few months as well and started packing up my collection (what a BIG task).

I purchased several cases of the file banker storage boxes from amazon for all the boxed freight cars, engines, Plasticville, etc. Might want to look in to those. I am also using the Giant Gaylord 4 foot long, 3 foot high boxes to move the larger locos, set boxes, etc as well as the largest storage tubs, 50 Gallon tote stackers for all the tubular track, more engines, cars, accessories etc I got from Walmart,

Here is the link for the banker boxes:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/prod...00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Gaylord Boxes:

https://www.interplas.com/48-x...iners-p-bx-484036bcc

Hope this helps

I'm in that situation now and will be moving in about six weeks. Since the bulk of my trains are in their original boxes, it's a matter of placing those within the moving boxes you can obtain from Public Storage or U-Haul. Scale passenger cars, auto racks, and the other 80-foot ars fit in the large boxes. I've found that the 40 and 50-foot cars will fit in the medium boxes. The plan it to pack them all in moving boxes and label them  "Garage-## or ##" for moving purposes with the contents inventoried for the move. The plan is for the movers to show up at my storage locker to pick up a bunch of non-descript boxes. My steam locomotives will be travelling in the car with me.

I use under bed storage bins from a variety of makers under my layout. I pad the bottom with thick fabric from JoAnns. When I want to run I slide out and take individual cars or take the whole bin to a ready area. The bins on the bottom of stack are wheeled. Only 2 high for ease of handling. I label the ends so I know what’s where.

The engines are separate, mostly non binned for now but close to the cars most likely to be run together  example Santa Fe F3s close to Santa Fe passenger set.

If you like the idea of using them on or under a layout you might be able to use the same bins to move your trains and save a few bucks.

There are many sizes so check what length works for you.

Im using those with boxed and unboxed trains.

@ZWPOWER13 posted:

I am getting ready to move within the next few months as well and started packing up my collection (what a BIG task).

I purchased several cases of the file banker storage boxes from amazon for all the boxed freight cars, engines, Plasticville, etc. Might want to look in to those. I am also using the Giant Gaylord 4 foot long, 3 foot high boxes to move the larger locos, set boxes, etc as well as the largest storage tubs, 50 Gallon tote stackers for all the tubular track, more engines, cars, accessories etc I got from Walmart,

Here is the link for the banker boxes:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/prod...00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Gaylord Boxes:

https://www.interplas.com/48-x...iners-p-bx-484036bcc

Hope this helps

I hadn't thought about bankers boxes, those are cheaper than plastic tubs and just as strong. Especially for as far as we're moving and the length of time I'll be using them.

@jlm1973 posted:

Thanks for all the advice. Luckily we're only looking to move a couple of miles, just a change in neighborhood. We'll be packing and moving all but the furniture. The bigger issue they will be packed away for 6-9 months until I can claim a spot for them.

James

We moved 8 miles two years ago from our old house to our "forever home".  I packed all my trains, track and scenery materials in their original boxes; then packed those in sturdy cardboard boxes.  Some of the sturdy cardboard boxes were liquor bottle boxes, Chewy dog food shipping cartons and so forth; nothing flimsy.  I also made sure that when the contents were packed, everything was reasonably fitted in with some packing material stuffed in as needed to prevent shifting en-route.   I had over 50 boxes by the time I was finished packing.

We had the same moving company relocate the trains that moved the rest of the household goods except the trains were moved on a separate day in a 26 foot box truck.  The movers carried the train boxes out to the truck where we supervised the loading.  Everything was tied down so it would shift around while the truck was moving.  When we arrived at our house, we reversed the process.  Nothing was damaged in the move.

I think proper packing and supervising the loading and unloading were keys to a damage-free move.

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