First-stage sort of all the parts from all 14 of the Friends sets. In January I did a review of each of the sets in 14 days called “Fortnight of Friends” and these are the parts after dissassembling all the sets.
This first pass uses a bunch of my sorting bins to divide the parts into the following major categories. Each one will require its own second-stage sort (and perhaps in some cases, a third) before the parts reach their final resting place. These categories are totally arbitrary and seat-of-the-pants, and though they do roughly correlate to how I store the parts, really anything that reduces entropy is helpful.
- Slopes, curved slopes, and anything that has a curved upper surface
- Cylindrical parts and anything that has a curved side
- SNOT pieces and Technic parts
- Modified plates
- Wheels, fenders, and other car parts
- Small parts (1×1 rounds, jumper plates, grille tiles, Henrik/cheese slopes, etc.)
- Transparent parts
- Bars, antennae, flags, and controls
- Printed parts and modified bricks (grille bricks, log bricks, bricks with clips on them, etc.)
- Minifig accessories, including the new flowers (which should probably go under foliage) and bugs (which should probably go under animals)
- Foliage (plant parts and old style flowers)
- Minifig and minidoll body parts
- Large parts (tall bricks, windows, doors, large detail parts, etc.)
Now that I’ve finished the initial sort, I need to process these further.
I’m having trouble deciding how to integrate these into my collection. For bricks, plates, and tiles, I sort by color and then within the bin for each color I have Ziploc bags for each size, so I can put the new colors into their own little mini-categories, probably just one bag for each color… But for the other parts, I generally sort by type, and I’m worried the exotic rare colors will get lost among the ordinary ones… so should I mix them with the other colors and maybe never see them again? Or should I put all the purple pieces together regardless of shape?
This is a problem I’ve been facing for some time and I keep going back and forth on how to deal with it. Any new ideas out there?