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HeroQuest box insert

Tips and Tricks that don't quite fit into the above categories.

HeroQuest box insert

Postby iKarith » Friday April 2nd, 2021 9:06am

Stumbled across this on a kind of broken site that appears to be a SEO trap otherwise …

heroquest-box-insert.jpg


Not sure who made it, but yes please! I've got a stack of 6mm EVA foam sheets here (US letter sized, white) and I suspect I'll be making a similar storage insert out of it. Looks like this set has a "more than" complete. I'm not sure if you could fit more in the box than they did if you organized things differently, but probably not much more if you wanted to protect the pieces from getting knocked about. I'm not sure if this isn't suboptimal in that regard as it is.

Has anyone got their own solution? Better, worse, or about the same? Post a pic, we could all use some organizational inspiration!
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Re: HeroQuest box insert

Postby Kurgan » Friday April 2nd, 2021 3:29pm

Be warned, that gray colored foam is amazing but only lasts about three decades before it starts to melt and crumble into dust. Then again I'm talking about the fluffy foam that is used to pack camera suitcases and other equipment. If it's that "smooth finish" type of hard foam, it might last longer. Or that densy packed "craft foam" I'm not sure how long that lasts. But even so I don't think it will actually stick to the contents when it degrades, unlike that white Styrofoam does after 25 years or so...
My solution was to use a fishing box and line it with craft foam and some little blocks of white (yellowed, bedding type) foam.

This tackle box is commonly found at big box retail stores and has two tray levels (more like 2.5 as there's a little compartment on top). I got mine for $11. There is a bigger version that is somewhat harder to find (except online) oddly enough which tends to go for $15-20 and has three trays (and still has the little tray on top).

Craft foam is pretty cheap, you can get a stack of them for a few dollars, and the furniture foam (for padding out beds, sofas or chairs) costs a little bit more ($10?) but you get massive amounts of it and you can cut it up into whatever you need (recommend a very sharp knife and pair of large sharp scissors). The white foam yellows in sunlight naturally but retains its strength.

My miniatures are solid color and plastic, but if you're using metal you really want to protect them with padding to prevent them banging into each other or into the sides. I find my system works pretty well as long as I arrange the minis properly before I press the foam down on the bigger ones and close the box. It's great for travel. A few times I've accidentally closed the lid and "pinched" a sword or something, but after being freed from that predicament, it eventually goes back to its normal shape (at least when I checked it again weeks later). One time I put two figures on top of each other and one scraped a bit of paint off the other (just a tiny bit) but the beauty of solid colors is its easy to touch up (the minis in question were both unvarnished at the time).

Reaper bones plastic minis can take a lot of abuse, and these boxes (I have this and the 3 tray -- though I use this one just as storage not for travel) provide some pretty good organization and protection without worry about damage and can take jostling.

For my Heroquest boxes I have one of those "under your bed" long plastic bins (it's actually slightly too tall for my bed unless I put it on lifts), which feats easily in the backseat of a car if I'm traveling with it.
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Re: HeroQuest box insert

Postby iKarith » Saturday April 3rd, 2021 8:30am

The organizer in my top pic looks to be made of foamcore. Pretty sure if that stays dry, it'll last quite a long time, but foamcore has low flexibility so it has to be used carefully. Craft foam (Foamies, Funky Foam, etc) is EVA … it'll probably hold up pretty well too. Its just that if it gets crushed or seriously creased, you're not likely to get it flat again. You can add rigidity to it the same way you can styrofoam with PVA, varnish, or Mod Podge which is effectively both—but I think I want to keep any box insert fairly plain PVA because I want something spongy and with low abrasion.

The kind of foam you're talking about disintegrating is polyurethane. Particularly when blown into a loose open cell foam (of the kind used to pack your minis), It's got fairly long chemical molecule chains which break down over time when exposed to moisture and humidity. Which means the foam will begin to break down into dust. Not ideal. (Some other plastics used for e.g. weatherstripping become a goo that just won't wash off for anything!)

This second HQ set has a box that's in rough shape. The paper's bubbling in a couple of spots and it's got some damage near the corners and edges. The top of the box is pretty badly caved in and torn free from the sides in one corner. There was some plastic tape on the box that peeled away easily without leaving resudule or damaging the paper artwork further, but fixing this box might be beyond my craft.

Still, if I can fix the box (and for my other box even if I can't), I'll build a box-within-a-box that has a lip around the edge so the top fits more snugly. I'm not opposed to using foamcore as they did, but I want to mostly use EVA around the minis to better protect them if they get painted.

The big question is going to be whether or not I can restore the box and other cardboard components. Some of them are in rough shape. Most I should be able to take care of though. The box is the big question mark.
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