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Imagine I am building a large display that will cover many square feet and have both tall buildings and lots of small details. What are some techniques for making these things modular? Is it safer to disassemble partially or plan to carry displays whole? What do the builders and clubs at shows do to transport large layouts?

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LEGO does glue its own big display structures, but no self-respecting fans would do that. –  Joubarc Oct 27 '11 at 11:36
    
A bit off-topic, but... You have only 11% acceptance rate! The smallest one I've ever seen on any site out of SE network. How do you except people to answer your even good looking questions, if you don't award them for a correct answer? –  trejder Oct 9 '12 at 10:56
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3 Answers 3

Compartmentalise

I wouldn't recommend transporting anything larger than a 32x32 stud baseplate. Use Technic pins and 1x2 bricks to connect parts of your model in the same way as the Modular Sets have done. The technique works well for buildings, planes, boats and just about any kind of large model.

picture showing 1x2 Technic bricks

Transport

Remove as many small parts likely to fall off in transportation as you possibly can and place them in a sealed plastic bag or other suitable container. Place the rest of the model with the extra parts in a cardboard/plastic box. The box is essential for catching any other fragile pieces that fall off the model. You may also use bubble wrap or tissue paper to pad the box as much as you can.

Once your Lego model has completed it's journey allow yourself some time to fix inevitable damage.

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On very large structures, too much pins might make it harder to assemble - so don't put too many of them. You can also use technic axles for a less tight connection. This is especially important if the display tables you have to put your models on are not properly aligned. Sometimes, you can use no connection altogether and just lay your modules next to one another. You'll see small gaps, but it makes the job of assembling/disassembling way easier. –  Joubarc Oct 8 '12 at 11:24
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Modularize, modularize, modularize! If you are putting models in a train show or similar, think about building large models so that they can conveniently be broken down into modules of no larger than 32x32 studs.

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You can use "Saran" wrap to gently wrap some models. It keeps the parts from falling to the wayside, but doesn't neccesarily keep the models intact during transit. Even if you box it up as well, there is always a good chance you'll need to touch up any thing you build then move.

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