26

It's been worked out by multiple groups who decided on different systems. The disagreement is based on what information was publicly available from the Lego Group at the time, what pieces had been manufactured up to that point, and what features the category authors thought were salient. To really appreciate the magnitude of the problem, just try ...


23

I think the correct approach to this is to consider the whole process and not just the sorting part, although the short answer "sort by form" will still be valid. The whole process is not limited to sorting, but in a more general way goes from the moment you decide to store a part away to the moment when you retrieve it to put it in a model. As such, you ...


20

If you have a lot of unsorted lego, it isn't easy to apply a fully-developed categorisation system without a lot of work up-front. One way around this is to develop a sorting system gradually. Exactly how you sort will depend on the size of your collection, the profile of your pieces, the time you have available and the categories that are convenient for ...


20

I have a fairly large collection. Processing bricks is a lot more pleasant with my homemade device, which is vaguely similar to the devices above, but made from MDF. Note that the commercial products have holes that are square, not round, so the size of bricks that is blocked by them is kind of variable. My sorter has two sorting levels, one with 30mm ...


20

While they won't do the sorting for you like that clever youtube video, there are a couple of commercial sorting products that can help you bulk-group your legos by size as a preliminary sorting mechanism, through differently-sized grates. Box4Blox has been around for a while. Good review of it at Brother's Brick. Lego has recently produced their own ...


17

As you mentioned sorting and storing LEGO does become an issue as you start to amass a massive collection. There are however great solutions worked out already by LEGO fans. The earlier you set up a storage system that works for you, the better, and the easier it is going to be to manage your projects, and also stay enthusiastic in the hobby. Here are a ...


13

Properly sorting is the best solution, although it doesn't seem like that is what you want. Before starting, it helps to have a quick look through the pile and pick out any interesting bricks you might use. If you don't have your mind set on an exact design, it can be just as much fun to build using parts picked out before hand instead of constantly ...


11

The LEGO company has indeed regularly issued storage solutions. They may be great for kids (the latest ones are brick-shaped), but let's face it, for serious fans they are mostly pointless. And expensive. Depending on the size of your collection and your sorting method (which is another debate, but remember to sort by form first, not by color), you'll want ...


11

Despite what it superficially looks like in (for example) Sariel's build videos, having a big pile of parts spread across the table is not the fastest way. Pour the contents of the smaller bags into containers (I use old plastic take-away containers). That way you are looking through a container of blue 3 long pins and red 2-long axles for a 2-long axle, ...


10

First thing to do would be to get together any building instructions you have and attempt to build those sets one at a time noting any missing elements as you go. Once this is complete and if you still have unsorted pieces, you could use a website such as Bricklink.com to try to identify the sets and then use Peeron.com to source the building instructions ...


10

One thing you could do is to presort your Lego bricks. Take your giant pile of Lego bricks and try to split it up into 5-10 categories. Those categories could be color, size, or any other features, it doesn't really matter. (I'm a Technic builder, so I would sort them into axles, pins, pin-connectors, beams and gears for example.) To get the best results ...


9

Before you start: It can be a big help to sort the parts, at least in some rudimentary way. Sorting by colour is least helpful, by shape much better. Don't dismantle partial assemblies until you've either (a) identified the sets that they come from or (b) you're sure they won't help you identify particular sets. To help you identify the sets: Search ...


9

First group by fit. So you put for example normal bricks on one stack, those technic bricks with holes on another and so on. Then start grouping the different sizes of your bricks like 7 long bars with holes, 9 long bars with holes and so on. I never sorted by color, but after the last step, if you have still to big stacks, you should do that.


9

I designed and built a lego sorting and storage desk for my son late last year. It has 16 bins and 16 corresponding holes in the top. It also has an interior baffle system to keep lego pieces from jumping into incorrect bin. I had to go through several designs to get it to work right, be ergonomic (all drop slots within reach while seated), and make it easy ...


9

Brick Architect has labels available for printing. These are designed to be used with a label maker, but there are also full page PDFs available that can be cut out. Here's an example of how they look:


8

Depending on what you have, your best bet is probably to re-build each set, and sell them as complete. Try BrickLink if you're not in a hurry to sell. You can see how much sets are selling for, and price yours accordingly. You can list them until they sell, and they only charge a small percentage when the items sell. If you want fast cash, sell them on ...


8

At my house there are two (well, three) Lego collections. Mine, and my kids'. The rules are stricter for mine: the Lego isn't meant to be thrown around, dropped pieces should be picked up, it isn't to be left on the floor, it doesn't get brought all over the house, and it gets put away every time. The kids' collections they keep in plastic boxes and they ...


7

Here's a video I found: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=6lZ9rSZwDzE Keep in mind that the time it takes you to build and use one of these is probably greater than the amount of time it takes to sort by hand. EDIT: I don't think slots would work great as the bricks could fit into multiple shapes/sizes of holes. One thing you ...


7

As you have probably guessed by now, there is no easy solution to your question. It all comes down to computer vision. In this solution, Akiyuki built a massive machine out of LEGO bricks, a camera, a scale, 2 Mindstorm NXT and, which he fails to mention in is parts list, a computer and some electronics. Computer vision is complex, and making a working ...


7

Very specific to your region (and mine): The ALDI chain carries the following hobby sorting drawers from time to time (about once a year): They are very cheap, about 7 Euro for each type and they are VERY popular with AFOLs in Belgium and the Netherlands. Unfortunately it is hard to predict when ALDI offers these and they are often sold out immediately.


6

Rebrickable.com offers the ability to add sets as well as individual pieces to your account.


6

Some hints that work for me: Get to know your lego. There is no point looking for a component that isn't there. Get someone to help you. Sometimes other people can spot what you've missed. Small people often have sharper eyes than big people. My 7 year old son can spot things far more qickly than me. If you're looking for a small piece, it is almost ...


6

All large sets released in the last few years come in numbered bags. The bags are sorted by logical sections as they appear in the instruction manuals. So for example there will be several bags numbered as #1, several bags numbered as #2, etc. The intention is that you open all the bags numbered as #1, build that section, then open the bags numbers as #2, ...


6

Try "Iris storage drawer" on amazon.co.uk. They sell transparent drawers and boxes in several sizes. These (3 large drawers or 6 small drawers) cost about 30 pounds. They are similar to the system that Jangbricks in his LEGO parts tour is showing.


5

I too think you answered yourself partially. You don't want 6 separate containers for these colors, which seems sensible; but on the other hand you admit yourself you mix some other colors when they are easily distinguished. Which I fully agree on: the first sort you should make is by part type anyway, and only afterward, if you have too much of a part, you ...


4

You may want to use a smooth surface on which elements can glide easily without being scratched This allows you to move unwanted parts around quite fast so that you can find the one you're after. But I agree with others, ultimately you'll need to sort. The smooth surface can help here too, and one good trick is to focus on retrieving elements which are ...


4

Yes. Jacques Mattheij made a pretty awesome machine using some feeders, machine learning, and air blowers to sort out the top 1000 parts by popularity. It looks like he's well on his way to sorting two metric tons of bulk LEGO: https://jacquesmattheij.com/sorting-two-metric-tons-of-lego More discussion on Hacker News, including a bunch of comments by ...


4

I have bought several used sets and it's a mix - sometimes people send the entire set built, sometimes split into larger chunks, and sometimes broken apart into individual pieces. It all depends on the current state of the set (fully assembled, partly assembled) and on the dimensions and availability of the shipping supplies. In the US it is easier to break ...


4

You can use the Compare Sets function on Rebrickable for that (if the B model is an official model or a MOC on Rebrickable). Here an example for both official models from the 42069 set.


4

With “services”, do you mean someone who would come out to your house and rebuild the sets for you? As intriguing as that sounds, I do not believe something like that exists. Your best bet is to grab an instruction manual and start rebuilding from the pieces. Once you have a few sets built this way, it’ll become easier to rebuild the remaining sets. For sets ...


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