Tuesday, October 22, 2013

What to throw away?

Leftover bitsEvery so often I have to much out my workspace. Recent efforts have involved making up a lot of model buildings which has seen me hacking my way through quite a lot of embossed plasticard.

All this leaves me with lots and lots of off-cuts. Some of them look like they could be useful in the future. The trouble is, am I just saving them for the sake of it?

Will I gradually disappear under a mountain of bits of card and plastic, very few of which will ever be of any real use?

Hoarders suffer from the same compulsion - they see a use for everything and while that potential use exists, they can't throw it away. Watching a TV programme on the subject, the man at the centre was being persuaded to chuck an old an broken umbrella but argued that there were useful bits in it that could repair another.

We are supposed to chuckle and say, "What an idiot". He's not going to repair any umbrellas. Those who have looked at these things with a practical eye will realise that there are very few fixable bits in them no matter how keen you are. Everyone else doesn't believe that anything can be fixed so can't understand why anyone would even consider trying.

I get it though and this is my problem. How small a bit of card, wood or plastic is likely to be useful?

At what point does the cost to store this stuff outweigh the cost of buying a new sheet for each model?

My current guide is if the bit is smaller than a credit card, it's rubbish. If it's an odd shape then it's rubbish. And when the box of spares fills up, no more can go it.

I'm not sure though, anyone have any advice?


Ubique Matt said...

I think all modellers hoard stuff which 'might be useful in the future' (it rarely is). If you know any wargamers give it to them. I keep a tub of scrap cutoffs which I use as rubble on the table. Once finished I brush it back into the tub.


Anonymous said...

The only proviso I would add to the "if it's smaller than a credit card, it's rubbish" rule is where the small bit you have is the only piece of that particular type of plastic or whatever because if you throw it out, Sod's law will ensure that you will need a little bit of it at some point in the future and will end up buying a whole new sheet.
Mind you, Sod's law will also ensure that the bit you have carefully preserved will be just a tiny bit too small.......!
Simon Hargraves
(It's being so 'appy wot keeps me going!)

Unknown said...

Why not bag it up and flog it on ebay carefully described of course as used stone/brick!


Unknown said...

Well you could always bag it up and flog it on that well known site Just be carefull how you describe it - used bits of stone & Brick!

May rake in thousands!!!

mog said...

made me 'lol' (as the kids say).. I have been having exactly the same conversation with myself today. All my useful bits are getting smaller and smaller and I do wonder if they'll ever get used. Sometimes you have to just bite the bullet and chuck it out. Of course, you KNOW that's exactly when you will need that 22mm square of Slaters embossed brick!