Bricklink: The Improvement

All things space. Also things not space.

Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby Sir Michael Le Fanu » Sat Mar 17, 2012 12:30 am

Hello friends, as you can tell this post involves something getting improved, and of course Cracklink. So what is it that's getting improved? My collection. Why us this important? I need some tips on what to buy first. I have a teensy little collection that needs to get sized up so I can build some space, pirates and castle ;)

So guys, any tips on...
what I should buy first? (parts I need? an assortment? other?)
a good bricklink store for just bricks at this point?
a max amount I should spend?
is bricklink the way to go?

...and any other tips you have for me.

Thanks again and happy trails! :space:
Blacktron, here I come!
User avatar
Sir Michael Le Fanu
 
Posts: 762
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2011 10:36 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby _zenn » Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:12 pm

The way I scaled up my collection is just buy a lot of sets with colors and connections I use regularly. I use bricklink to buy stuff I don't own, mostly in bulk ammounts or just stuff I come across and might be interesting in using.
Image
User avatar
_zenn
 
Posts: 164
Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2011 2:32 pm
Location: Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby Sir Michael Le Fanu » Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:51 pm

Thanks for the tip ;)

I'll be buying some PotC sets soon so that will help with my castle building and carribbean island scene. Not sure what I'll do for space but I'll find something.

Thanks _zenn!
Blacktron, here I come!
User avatar
Sir Michael Le Fanu
 
Posts: 762
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2011 10:36 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby KDog » Sat Mar 17, 2012 11:58 pm

I generally prefer Bricklink for buying old sets. In my experience, I seem to have less problems getting sets that are truly complete when I use Bricklink over eBay. I suspect many Bricklink users are actual LEGO fans who are more knowledgeable about the subject. And you can often find decent prices on Bricklink.
KDog
 
Posts: 222
Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2010 12:52 pm

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby Sir Michael Le Fanu » Sun Mar 18, 2012 12:22 am

I saw that you posted that in the 'Space: The Comic' topic and wondered why :p

I believe that is true, they are probably selling to buy more parts. Which is what I aim to do- I want to pretty much sell all my current bricks (in bulk maybe, or possibly get rid of it according to color, that way i have what i need for some time) this summer and start off fresh again. I have a good amount of cash already but without my full collection I will have even more to buy.
Blacktron, here I come!
User avatar
Sir Michael Le Fanu
 
Posts: 762
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2011 10:36 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby Bluetron » Sat Mar 31, 2012 5:35 pm

I use the following two methods for building my collection:

Bricklink
For every purchase, I try to focus on an era of Lego that I'm after. In my case, this is usually classic space. So let's say, for example, I want to load up on M:Tron related stuff. I'll look up the inventories of all the M:Tron sets released, then build a want list from those inventories. Then I find the rarest part on my list - let's say the canopy from the Mega Core Magnetizer - and I look for the most reputable seller who has that part (hopefully for the right price). Then I buy as much of my M:Tron want list as I can from him/her. Sometimes I'll split my want list between two sellers, depending on my budget. I usually get about 80% of what I'm looking for, and I always try to emphasize discontinued parts.

Current sets found in stores
When it comes to brand new sets, I'm always looking at what useful elements they contain. As of early 2012, the best sets to get for classic space-friendly building are:
Alien Conquest (especially the ADU-centered sets; lots of blue)
City
City Space Shuttle theme
Creator (you can never go wrong here. Great price-per-piece ratio)
Ninjago Series II (namely 9442-1 Jay's Storm Fighter; the villain's vehicles are good if you're looking for unique lime parts).
If you can still find it, I highly recommend the 7984-1 Deep Sea Raider. Not only do you get a nice big clear yellow windshield, you get five clear yellow mini-windshields as well. A must for classic space and Blacktron builders.

If you're looking for "just bricks" without using bricklink, you can't go wrong with the 6177 Builders Of Tomorrow box. It's not the most exciting set by itself, but it has a ton of basic bricks (in nine colors) and is a good way to boost your collection. I believe TRU still has this one, and it's one of the best price points you'll find (about 5c per piece in US $). Of course other basic sets can be good as well, it just depends on what types of themes you like to build.

Hope this helps. Happy hunting!
User avatar
Bluetron
 
Posts: 29
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 1:05 am

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby Sir Michael Le Fanu » Sat Mar 31, 2012 6:09 pm

Thanks for the tips! Really helpful all around and i'll probably have some decent parts come summer. Thanks again everyone ;)
Blacktron, here I come!
User avatar
Sir Michael Le Fanu
 
Posts: 762
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2011 10:36 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby MTronHeroKodiak » Tue Apr 03, 2012 9:48 pm

I would say 90% of the people selling on bricklink are lego fans. Mainly Adults, as Teens can not sell in a store.

Jason, has a good store and I order from him all the time. And the more you order you get a nice coupon on next orders up to like 20% on your fifith and future orders! He ships extremely fast as well. And will work with you.
http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=DadsAFOL

I would avoid ebay for lego, unless you have a seller you can trust.

Buy sets that are good in price per piece, use brickset for that.
I would use bricklink to get parts you absolutely need but can't spend money on sets to get, and to get older sets as people have mentioned.
I know I am a bit late responding, but I hope this helps a bit.

Good luck!
Only a M:Tron can fix something that isn't broke!
MTronHeroKodiak
 
Posts: 128
Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2010 10:14 pm
Location: United States

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby Sir Michael Le Fanu » Tue Apr 03, 2012 10:03 pm

No worries about being late, it all helps in the long run ;)
Blacktron, here I come!
User avatar
Sir Michael Le Fanu
 
Posts: 762
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2011 10:36 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Bricklink: The Improvement

Postby Draykov » Mon Apr 09, 2012 9:17 pm

This may not answer your question directly, but as you seem to be new to the hobby, I'll repeat what I had to say on this over at FBTB:

A LEGO Hobbyist's Guide to Decision Making

Maybe it's just me, but we seem to be getting a lot of "I've got money, which set should I buy, X or Y?" type threads lately. I thought it might be time to take it upon myself to start a catch-all thread for this type of question. Here's my 2 cents, regardless of which sets we're talking about.

There are basically 3 variables you want to consider when deciding between 2 sets when your funds are too limited to buy both:

Age (how close to retirement is each set): When forced to decide between two sets, my personal rule of thumb is (assuming I "like" both sets equally) to buy the set that's been on the market longest first. There are exceptions to this rule (see 7283 "Ultimate Space Battle") when it's pretty clear that if you don't snap it up right away, you're gonna miss out. On the flip-side of that coin, some expensive UCS sets stay around for years. Generally speaking, your average LEGO set has a lifespan of about 2 years (though it does vary) and if something you want is already close to the 2 year mark, it's time to ask yourself whether you want to pay MSRP now or if you're willing and able to pay collector's prices later (or, of course, secret option #3 - dealing with loss ;)).

Cost (is one cheaper?): If both sets you're considering are part of the same release wave and you like them both equally, I would generally lean towards buying the more expensive one first unless you're anticipating a sale of some kind. Chances are if you have the money for the expensive one now, you should act on it. Saving up for the less expensive one should, ideally, take less time. Before you know it, you'll have both.

What do you want? (Which one has the parts, minifigures or overall model you're most interested in?): Basically, nobody is going to be able to make up your mind for you. I generally consider the following criteria in this order:

  • Do I like the subject and the LEGO representation of the subject?
  • Do I like the assortment of parts?
  • Do I like the selection of minifigs?

Educate Yourself

I always have trouble with the very general, usually accompanied with no specific details "which sets are good/worth it" type of questions. I'm not entirely sure why, but I think it's mainly because the answers are very subjective and given the vast amount of readily available information on the Internet, asking such broad questions also comes off as kind of lazy. As previously mentioned, nobody can make up your mind for you. But I don't want to appear unfriendly to new kids just getting into the hobby or old kids coming back from a dark age, so I have this to offer:

You want pieces? Bricklink is an essential resource, particularly for older parts no longer in the current production line, so register as a member and make yourself happy. The key to having a good experience on Bricklink is to find sellers you trust who consistently offer quality parts and fair prices. When you find them, be sure to leave them positive feedback after each successful transaction and be sure to add them to your favorites list so you can find them again. LEGO also has a customer service section of their website where you can request replacement of broken or missing parts (generally, for free) but this is an honor system and abusing it is frowned upon. There is also the LEGO Shop@Home Online Pick-a-Brick, but that tends to be a bit more expensive than the same parts in new condition on Bricklink.

You want set inventories? You want to do one of two things: 1)get familiar with Bricklink's catalog and check out set inventories or 2)use Peeron to do the same.

You want instructions? The best place to purchase physical instruction booklets, again, is Bricklink. However, there are multiple sources for online instructions* if you're going paperless, such as Peeron's PICSL, Worldbricks, and for more recent sets, LEGO's customer service site. Between those three sites, you should be able to get pretty much whatever instructions you need for official sets in an electronic format (generally, .pdf).

You want reviews? Well, FBTB has its very own review forum as well as a Set Guide that includes some basic review information. If you're looking for more of an "on a scale of 1 to 10" sort of answer, LUGNET has a simple rating system for all the entries in its set reference list. There are other resources for reviews, generally in the form of blogs and fan sites/discussion forums, but with the other information posted here, you have plenty of tools to make an educated assessment yourself.

You want to view/share pictures of upcoming sets or MOCs? Flickr is where its at, but I found there to be a bit of a learning curve in using it. Lots of great stuff out there though by talented builders, so it's totally worth it. Before Flickr, there was Brickshelf. While it's still alive and kicking, most of the cool kids these days use Flickr. Brickshelf is a bit easier to use, but it is also more limited in its functionality whereas Flickr has all of this "Web 2.0" community magic behind it.

Want to keep track of your collection? LUGNET and Peeron both give you the option to build a personal set database, though you do have to register at each site and, unfortunately, approvals for membership can take a while.

You want to know what sets you can build with this vast collection you've been keeping track of? Try uploading your setlist from Peeron to Rebrickable. There you can find out if you need to make a trip to Bricklink or if you can just pilfer parts from your own collection to build other official sets you never purchased.

So, that's about the very best comprehensive answer I can come up with. This is a sincere, earnest attempt to be helpful to those that are willing to make a little effort to help themselves. For those of you looking for a spoon-feeding, the set I recommend to you can be found below:

Image

"We're gonna need a bigger boat..." - Sorting/Storage

This is it's own animal with myriad techniques, methods, tactics and strategies. It's a war of attrition that you're destined to lose and it warrants a separate discussion.

Gift Giving

In all likelihood, you know the recipient of your gift better than anyone here would, so this one is really on you. It'll mostly be a matter of what they'll get the most enjoyment out of, how much you want to spend and the availability of whatever it is you're trying to hunt down. Check out LEGO Shop@Home if you need to confirm the MSRP on a current set and consider taking a look at the "Finds/Deals" forum here on FBTB or the Brickset Bargain Watch page to see if you can score something on the cheap.

Selling Your LEGO

I'll be perfectly honest...I only sell the odd set very occasionally, and generally with motive merely to break even after deciding I don't want the set in question, so I'm no expert. That said, I do have a few words of advice if you're getting out of the hobby and want to unload your precious cargo:

Fortunately for sellers, LEGO tends to be a product that appreciates in value, though there are caveats to that. Ultimately, the decisions to sell in bulk or as individual sets with/without instructions, with/without figs, with/without boxes, with/without all of the parts...can only be made by you, the seller, and it's a judgment call that will vary depending on your unique situation. Like many things in life, the more [work] you put into the project, the more [money] you'll get out of it.

Selling in bulk is a good way to get some quick and dirty cash, and it's also a quick "rip off the band-aid" method of liquidation that will be less likely to tempt you back into the hobby (compared to, say, opening a Bricklink store), but selling brick by the pound can almost be compared to selling baseball cards or comic books or [some less dated smallish collectible item] by the pound. Individual/identified/complete sets will garner more interest/value, but it'll take more time and energy on your part to ensure inventory accuracy, customer satisfaction and cost efficiency with shipping/handling.

I also feel the need to point out, just as a general warning to anyone who would do so:

Conducting business/exacting personal transactions on this site (in the B/S/T forum) is welcome and encouraged so long as all involved are benefiting and no shady shenanigans take place. People who use this site and its community for no other reason than to:

a) hawk their wares to maximize profit or
b) take advantage of helpful, nerdy boy-men with encyclopedic knowledge of the hobby

...will be tarred, feathered and driven out of here on a rail.


*Edit: Brickley's Words was a good source for instructions, but seems to have gone inactive around Dec. 2009
Hail Space!
Image
User avatar
Draykov
 
Posts: 10
Joined: Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:50 am

Next

Return to Space.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 1 guest

cron