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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Dave's Baggage Train Review

Dave's Baggage Train Review - By Luke Melia

Dave's Baggage Train produces an assortment of storage trays and carrying cases for miniatures.  The basic tray is opened topped and made from plastic and wood.  All trays are 7 3/4" wide and 14" long.  The trays vary in height from 1" to 6" tall.  All of the trays and inserts are sold separately.  You can choose from rubber magnet, rubber steel, foam and felt inserts. He even makes glass-topped and snap top covered trays.  The glass covers are awesome for displaying models and the snap top trays are great, especially when you can fit your army in one or two trays.   All of Dave's inserts are  made to be customized to your individual gaming needs for every tray.

I recently picked up a carrying case from Dave's Baggage Train.  The set I picked up is called the Flames of War Special.  It comes with the 12" standard case (in black or grey), 3 x 2" trays with two sets of foam/tray, 4 x 1.5" trays with one set of foam + extra thin flat/tray.  The retail price for this is $109.00.  He is offering a special for WWPD fans.  Contact them directly and mention WWPD and you can get this pack for $95.00 plus shipping.

From personal experience I can tell you that these trays are the single best way to store your figures.  The trays stack and lock on top of each other and are extremely affordable.  Because of the rigid materials consturction, you never get the bending you get with alot of other products when carrying them.  The foam cut outs are awesome for infantry.  The 1" trays are fine for infantry and the
1.5" trays work well for half tracks small tanks and.  I prefer the 2" trays for artillery, cavalry and tanks.  You can also fit other companies' foam inserts inside of the trays with about an inch to spare - this eliminates the bending foam factor and can save you a few bucks by not having to buy the inserts if you choose.  In the past, one of my biggest complaints was the transport of the trays.  I have never used the carrying case for a tournament before, but did give it a try around the house and it seemed to work well as long as I did not turn it upside down.  In all fairness, all miniatures will get jostled and you will lose a .50 cal or two if you turn it upside down.  I even had the boys carry it with miniatures in it and it held up very well.

This is a stock photo of the die cut foam and the foam top and bottoms. 

My concerns revolve around the types of foam available.  D.B.T. for pre-cut foam only makes the one infantry-sized base.  This means if you want large bases for artillery or cavalry you have to manually cut out the piece of foam in the middle.  That by itself, is not so bad, however there are no cut outs that fit medium and large tanks.  You can squeeze a Sherman in there, but forget about a KV-1 or a Tiger.  Again, you have to cut the foam and place the cut foam at either end of the cut out in order to get tanks in there.  This limits the number of tanks you can fit on a tray once you start cutting foam seem like an inefficient use of space.  If D.B.T. starts making tank and large based sized foam cut outs I would be even more satisfied with the products.

Overall I think D.B.T. are a great buy.  You can get a 1.5" deep tray, with a foam sheet underneath and a die cut foam insert for $10.50.   The drawbacks of this product are the limited number of pre-cut foam choices.  Admittedly, I stored my 15mm ancients in these trays for years and never had any issues.  I stated previously, I own quite a bit of this product and it is by far the easiest (and most organized) way to store miniatures that I have encountered to date.  I would give the overall rating 4 out of 5 infantry stands!

This is a stock photo showing the snap top case.
Bag and trays provided by Dave's Baggage Train

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