Friday, May 4, 2012

Review: Hobbyzone paint storage racks

I admit to having a case of "collect them all". It all began in the late 90's when my girlfriend bought me a Gameboy and the new game Pokemon for my birthday. Actually, I think it started way before then, but that was the first time I actually noticed it. I collected them all... 

So when it was time for buying new paints I got them all. When switching from Vallejo MC (good paints) to the Reaper Master Series I actually bought them all. I excuse myself a little since they're not stocked locally in Europe. So it was either getting them all and save some on postage or getting them triad by triad and having to pay quite a lot in postage. 

This made me end up with 200+ paint pots. That had to be sorted in some way or another due to the triad system. I do like the triads. When doing fast paintjobs it removes the "what color shades/highlights with what?"-step. But it's a pain when your paint pots are spread in a box and you spend 15 minutes trying to find one out of 200.

Earlier I bought some racks from Eslo Terrain ( they were great once you got over the hurdle of assembling them. They were also a bit cumbersome to move around and although they were constructed really sturdy I felt they were kinda overbuilt.

That about that. About two weeks ago I stumbled upon the polish company Hobby Zone that had a bunch of racks avaliable. The construction was kinda slimline compared to the racks from Eslo. No need for glue. Best of all, they were really inexpensive! Order away!

A week later they were here, together with one of the work stations that I'll review later. Just give me time to use it for a while. :)


The racks came in a "flat box". So you had to assemble them yourself. Not at all a hard thing to do. The three uprights slot into the bottom part (the part with a logo) and the shelves slides and locks, due to friction, onto the uprights. No need for glue! In the picture above you can see the sub-assemblies pretty clear.

The construction is made up of 4mm hardwood (MDF) that's CNC'd to fit your paint bottles.

Now, I said that there was no glue needed. At least not if you plan to have the shelves more or less stationary. I found while moving around the shelves that a bit of glue is needed due to the weight of the paint pots making the bottom section coming undone. Something that can be avoided if you carry it holding the bottom and apply slight pressure to the shelves. But, meh, a small blob of wood glue will take care of that. Don't add too much and you will be able to pack the shelf flat for storage (Why would you ever do that? The Hobby is your life!?)

All filled up they look like this! Holding a total of 54 (13, 14, 13, 14) dropper bottles neatly without any hassle. The staggered rows also makes for easy distinguishing of individual colors.

The Eslo racks held the bottles a little more securely due to recesses in the bottom plates. But I hardly found that to be of any use except for when the cats were on a rampage. Not that it mattered much since they use heavy furniture to stop on. Everything loose is just speedbumps.

Assembly was trouble free, as noted earlier.

There is of course racks made for bigger (36mm dia.) paint pots, like the ones offered from Games Workshop, P3 and others.


All in all a well designed product. A lot of value for your money, or at least a lot of percieved value for your money if you're a pedantic (like me) with your paint storage.

I could perhaps do without the logotype on the bottom of te racks. Just to make it even slimmer, but that's a small price to pay for what I consider to be the best non-DIY solution available on the market today.

Hobby Zone also has a range of organizers, dice towers and stuff. Go check them out.

Now I'm off to use/abuse the paint station. :)

1 comment:

  1. Don't order from HobbyZone Poland! I ordered some organizers over 2 and half weeks ago and I still haven't received what I ordered. I contacted HobbyZone customer service and so far they have been very unhelpful. Hobby zone keeps blaming the shipping company. I contact the shipping company and they haven’t even received my order for shipping yet. The fact is I ordered some organizers, Hobbyzone took my money and after over two weeks I have seen nothing! HobbyZone said I have to wait up to 3 months for my package to arrive before they will issue a refund. What a joke!