Brickset members: We own half a billion pieces between us!

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On Christmas Eve I made a note of how many sets we own between us. The figure was 1,898,700. Now, today, it's 1,992,700 which means collectively we've bought or received nearly 100,000 in the last month, and is an average of 74 sets each (based on the 26,636 people that use the 'My Sets' facility).

What's more, the total pieces count shown in the menu has rolled over the 500 million mark, and having just done a quick sum in the database, that includes 2,725,000 minifigs which if we were to stand them on top of each other they'd stand 109 Km high, which isn't quite to the moon but is still a long way!

It will be interesting to look back at this article in a year's time and compare the figures again.

80 comments on this article

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By in United States,

Since the release of the collectible mini figures, my set count has jumped up.

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By in United States,

"which means collectively we've bought or received over 100,000 in the last month"

It also means that new users have registered and uploaded their lists. Do you have the figures on registrations available and how it's trending historically?

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By in Canada,

awesome!

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By in Canada,

Yeah, I registered and added 271 sets, but that doesn't mean I've bought anything.

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By in United States,

and somehow, for some reason, this makes me feel like I should go buy more...

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By in Belgium,

Plenty more to come this year, for sure.

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By in United States,

Hey Huw, I have a lot of spare parts, perhaps a way to track certain parts to in the near future?

But that is awesome, 500mil pieces is quite a bit!

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By in Russian Federation,

Cool& And I've always wondered who has the biggest collection on Brickset. HUW, no? According to his data, he has got 1667 different sets.

@JtheMonk , that's way wicked, I think.

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By in United States,

I just added a bunch of sets to my list that I have owned for a while and hadn't listed. I am sure I don't have all my sets listed either. Also, I buy and sell used Lego on ebay, so the total amount of Lego in my house is probably more than twice what my profile says. I have had as much as 300lbs of Lego arrive at my house in one week! My mailman just loves me, I am sure. Is there such a thing as too much Lego? I think we literally have Lego in every room of the house! Bathrooms excluded for the moment, but I have a ton to wash (I can't believe the SUPER GROSS things people send me!) so there will be Lego in both bathrooms as well. So I guess what I am trying to say is that I physically have MUCH more Lego than I have listed in my profile.

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By in United States,

I've never registered any sets but, after reading this, I think I need to help the cause. :)

I'm curious, how do you folks store your open sets? How do you avoid dust?

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By in United Kingdom,

Wow, thats alot of pieces and minifigures...

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By in Italy,

That's great! It's hard to believe that this is just for Brickset members... Together there are probably more!

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By in United Kingdom,

Also added a load more to my Bricket list, it's great to see info like this and how big the community is growing,

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By in United States,

"And I've always wondered who has the biggest collection on Brickset. HUW, no? According to his data, he has got 1667 different sets."

My post is getting off-topic, but I just looked at his list and was surprised -- for a collection that large -- to see no 80's-early 90's era Castle or Pirates!

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By in United States,

Ah, hear we go. It's kind of like the year's statistics that I was hoping to see. We saw one as 2009 ended. . . .

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By in United States,

@beefygrefe I agree
This is great tell us when we hit the 2 millon set mark

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By in United States,

I store a majority of built sets in zip lock bags where possible, otherwise in plastic shopping bags and then in boxes. Of my 1212 different sets tracked here, at least 500 are unopened. I have tons of time to order and buy more but not nearly enough time to build.

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By in United States,

I'm almost positive we can get to the 3 million figure mark before summer if Brickset keeps growing like this and people keep buying sets, I know I will! I hope in the next few years we can make that half billion pieces to a quarter billion or more. =)

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By in Australia,

i have made a glass cupboard for my lego if i need more room i make another one

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By in Slovakia,

the information as such is great, I just wonder how did you get those numbers - 1,992,700 minus 1,898,700 is surely not over 100,000 (it's 94,000 actually) and average for each of 26,636 users should be 3,5, not 74

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By in United States,

My list is not accurate; I know that I own loads more than the 370 sets I have listed. We have been collecting LEGO for thirty-five years. I really want to get a better inventory of our collection going, but I really don't have the time. The 370 sets I have listed here are just the ones that I can remember. I'm sure that we have at least two hundred small sets that I'm forgetting and I probably haven't added our newest additions.

Hopefully this summer, I can pull our collection out of storage can make a better inventory.

I'm kind of shocked that the average collector only has 74 sets. I just thought we all have hundreds and hundreds of sets.

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By in United Kingdom,

@rocao, "was surprised -- for a collection that large -- to see no 80's-early 90's era Castle or Pirates!"

I didn't start buying LEGO again until 1995 and for the rest of the decade only really bought Technic, trains and futuristic themes (oh, and Western and Adventurers and probably a few others). I don't buy used LEGO, I've had all mine from new, which will explain the lack of those themes.

@fingol, good call, my bad: wait until tomorrow and hopefully it will be over 100,000...

74 is the average size of people's collection, not the number of new sets we've each added, which as you say is 3.5-ish.

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By in United States,

Sets, Minifigs, Books, Gear etc all need to be split up.

I'd like to keep a record of my collectable minifigs and Lego tat separately from my sets. :)

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By in United States,

Looks like I am just over the 500 sets mark. How many people out there have over 500 sets like Huw???

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By in Australia,

Those are some astonishing numbers and they're great to see.

@ beefygrefe - I was thinking just the same thing!

@ ericjohn - "The 370 sets I have listed here are just the ones that I can remember. I'm sure that we have at least two hundred small sets that I'm forgetting..."

I have the same problem - except I don't have anywhere near 570 sets.

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By in United States,

@huw: It's possible to get those castle and pirate sets new, it just costs a few bodily appendages :P At any rate, to each their own; I was the reverse, I started rebuilding my collection of castle and pirate, then found one or two sets I liked in other themes before, lo and behold, I found myself collecting the entire theme. I'm sure that's a tendency with which many here can relate.

While everyone is talking numbers, how easy is it for you to do some additional data mining about collections in addition to what's available for individual sets? Here are some stats that I think would be quite interesting:

1) Distribution of owned sets by year (i.e. 9% of sets are from 2010)
2) Distribution of owned sets by theme
3) Distribution of collection sizes
4) Top 'n' largest collections
5) Top 'n' valued collections

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By in United States,

What would really help the numbers is if all of my sets that I have listed had piece counts. Of the 848 different sets I have listed, 759 have piece counts. That leaves 89 sets that aren't added to the total Brickset count. I'm not complaining, I'm sure this site hit 500,000,000 some time ago we just didn't know it because there are sets there that aren't counted.

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By in United States,

I'm new, but I have 156 sets-more 2x the normal number-with a few un-accounted sets to go around to check.

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By in United States,

Wow. I thought I was a hard core Lego collector with only about 200 sets, which fills an entire room I have all to myself. You guys with 300+... where in the heck do you store that many Lego pieces?!?!

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By in United States,

Congrats you guys. Just a 500 million more to go, and Brickset will get bragging rights XD

I do agree with Blackicep8ntball, where do you guys store that many sets?

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By in Canada,

I'm over the 500 set mark, and it would be neat if we could see collection numbers in list form as well. For example, people who have over 1000 sets, or people that have 500 sets and so on.
A question as well: On the "sets owned" page, it shows the number of matches in the top right corner, but not the number of total sets. Could it be added? (Like on "My Sets" tab, it shows matches, and then total sets.)
With the amount of sets I own, it doesn't take up that much space, although they are all sorted. It only takes up a corner in my spare room. Now if they were all together - I wouldn't have enough room in my apartment for them!
Congrats on the milestone Brickset & Huw!

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By in United Kingdom,

Something I would like to see would be the ability to add a certain number of individual parts to your collection. With PAB, yard sales, eBay, bricklink and more, this option could become very beneficial.

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By in United States,

@Blackicep8ntball - I... that is my son has 600 sets at this time. I only get to touch them after he's built them the 1st time. :p They are everywhere. we try to keep most of them in ziplock bags and then they go into storage bins that are in several stacks 4 high in a small room in our basement until he wants to play with a certain theme again. I only had one set as a kid (#733) but I loved it. My wife started our son out with one of the $5 creator sets thinking it would be a nice "cheap" toy...... He loved it and it gave me an excuse to buy more, now about 3 yrs later we're at 600 sets and counting.

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By in Australia,

Wow that's awesome! Thanks for the stats update Huw and I say well done everyone!

@Blackicep8ntball & Da_LegoBuilder - EVERYWHERE! I have over 400 sets listed and probably a few hundred more from when I was a kid that are just in pieces and forgotten about, but they are everywhere. Lucky my wife is lenient (well, bribed with her crystal collection is probably a better way to put it!)
Most sets are built and on display in cabinets, various shelves or on top of office cupboards etc particularly my star wars sets. With many of the sets that I 'let' my son play with they are built and then stored in large plastic stackable containers. I also have my "cupboard of shame" which is an entire cupboard of lego still in their original boxes that I just haven't had time to build. For some reason no matter how hard I work it just doesn't get any smaller. Go figure!

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By in United States,

I keep mine in the basement, it takes up about half with shelves and a large table for my trains. I'd say 90% of mine are built. That way my kids can play with them if they ask. There are a very few they can't play with though.

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By in New Zealand,

This doesn't include the miscellaneous stuff I don't include in my collection online...

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By in Israel,

Interesting, the average of 74 sets, and I have 73... awesome :D

Thanks Huw, I must say, great work with Brickset! Half a billion is a very impressive number!

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By in United Kingdom,

Pretty amazing stats; I've also got maybe 30 or 40 more sets to add so if we all get up to date we'll top the 2 milion in no time !

I'd also like to add my voice to the calls for a parts as well as a sets inventory on Brickset; I've traditionally used Peeron for this, but the site is slow and gets more out of date every day, so it'd be great to integrate sets and loose parts on here.

What d'ya reckon, Huw ?

:-)

PS. In response to the question "where do you all store your sets", I guess the answer has to be "everywhere" !! Just ask my wife........

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By in United States,

I was a new register, with 553 sets, hundreds of those are the collectible minifigures.

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By in United Kingdom,

@rocao, I like some of your ideas and I'll see if I can generate the stats later, either as a one-off or as a live report, if the queries are not too expensive (in terms of database load)

However, I suspect those who would feature in the Top 'n' largest collections and Top 'n' valued collections might not want the figures made available, and in any case there's nothing stopping someone from inflating their collection size and value just by adding, say, 1000 Death Stars, just so they appear at the top of the list.

@oldtodd33, we do work hard to update piece counts but there are still gaps, as you have found. If you (or anyone else) would like to help collect the missing information, then get in touch and I'll provide a list of sets which we don't have counts for.

@DrDave, I'd love to do that but I'm having issues obtaining the data, as you know. Maybe I should push for it again...

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By in United States,

900 sets and counting!

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By in United Kingdom,

@Huw, in 2 words, "yes please" !

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By in Belize,

@Huw you said that "74 is the average size of people's collection".. .where i live the average is about 28 and thats what i have because LEGO is kinda hard to find here (unless its impulse sets)

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By in United States,

Wow! That's alot of LEGO!

@Huw- I can help with piece counts for the few sets that I have if you want. Also, I would like a part inventory where we can catalogue all of the spare parts that we own, if that's even possible.

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By in United States,

250 sets in 2 years of slow collecting but I will be easily hitting 300 by the end of this year. I perosnally get more sets each year than the average user has. I know that some people will create 2 accounts and store their sets on both. I had one account when I had 50 sets-ish, but I forgot my username and password and I deleted the confimation e-mail so I had to create a new one. So these figures are not quite accurate. As of right now, does anybody else have more than 40 2011 sets, because I can't find anybody and it's making me think I'm the only one. I just got the Single-Drum Roller for $15 including shipping & tax. Lucky me!!!!

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By in Canada,

Those piece counts can't be accurate though for individual sets, unless the site actually includes the one or two, sometimes four extra little odds and ends LEGO includes in the sets as spares in case of lost or broken little pieces.

I know personally that my piece count is not accurate due to the fact that I still retain a few medium sized ziplock bags full of pieces from the assorted sets I once had as a child. Most noteably the Central Precinct HQ, which I surprisingly kept a large number of pieces from, but not the base plate. (Go figure)

As far as storage is concerned, I learned over the years that keeping all the parts loose in a large plastic tub was not the best or practical idea, I prefer to keep all of my sets together with their instructions in ziplock sandwich and freezer bags these days that way I'm not digging through piles of parts and trying to find where a particular piece originated from when rebuilding them. (I used to keep them all in large ziplock freezer bags by Theme, but that soon became impractical.)

Had I not given away my Classic Space Theme sets or any of the other sets I sold off, I'd probably be closer to the 300 mark by now just going by the reviews I've made on all the sets I had growing up. Had I kept every single set and piece from the older stuff I lost the instructions to I probably could have rebuilt a number of older sets by using the instructions here or elsewhere. As it stands, if I have to buy used to replace those sets, I'll do it. That won't bother me.

Huw, I'd be curious to know which sets you need parts lists for myself, not sure if I could help you on any of them, but I'd sure like to try if I could.

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By in Canada,

Wow, going to update my page now.

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By in United States,

@Huw: What is the value of all of those sets?

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By in United States,

One addition I'd like to see is the opportunity to include individual pieces, maybe under a Pick-a-brick heading. My niece loves legos too , but wants to have female lego police women and construction workers. Due to the lack of female mini-figures in Lego land, I just received my first pick-a-brick order - where unfortunately only 1 female head is available.

Even so, an order of 10-30 of that one head and a few other body parts can change everything. Now I've built 45 additional lego people for my lego collection and similar numbers for her... so if the option became available, I'd like to add these pieces, or a "this was the number of pieces in my pick-a-brick order into my Brickset collection to help follow my set counts more accurately.

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By in United States,

I think it would be too crazy to try and keep track of loose individual pieces. After all it is called brick"set" not brick pieces. if you really want to keep track of individual pieces go to Bricklink and make a closed store.

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By in United States,

@Huw... you're right; privacy is a concern. In fact, I had to remove my full name from here and other sites because people were contacting me on facebook about my collection.

Maybe an extra DB column to denote if people want to opt out of the top collection list? Heh, sorry if this is getting out of hand, I hope you understand they are just ideas.

Also, I agree that it could be easily artificially inflated, but I would hope 1) that people would prefer accuracy over self-aggrandizement and 2) for those few that don't, it'd be relatively easy to spot. Personally, I love to see just how 'dedicated' some of us out there are, and how I measure up :)

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By in Israel,

The only problem with me is that it says that I own 73 sets.... but it only has piece counts for 46 of them. Which ones?! And it only has retail prices for 62 of them... again, which ones is it missing prices? Its hard to know exactly how many pieces I own and what I paid for them when it is not complete. I can't even figure out which ones it doesn't have piece counts or retail prices for...

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By in United States,

My stats:

You own 1950 sets (721 different).
We have piece counts for 683 of them. Using that data we have calculated that you own 386474 pieces!
We have retail prices for 642 of them. Using that data we have calculated that their total retail value is US$36252.

Of those sets........99% are MISB. Also have roughly 40 to 50K pieces that I've acculated from PAB.

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By in United States,

*Faints* That. Is. AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!! Brickset sure deserves that spot on the big website rankings!

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By in United Kingdom,

The figure for the total value of everyone's collection is...

$52 million!

Tomorrow I will add it to the Did you know... section of the home page along with a few other stats about members.

I added piece counts for around 400 sets today so the total parts figure on the home page will jump by around 3 million when it's next calculated overnight.

Excluding 'Gear', Duplo, Dacta, Clickits and other baby/girls themes we now only need piece counts for about 200 sets, of which 48 are the collectable minifigs. I will create a page so they can be seen soon.

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By in United States,

@Huw....Are you the only person, or do you have others, that update the set details, i.e., piece count and prices? Would be nice to have a dedicated email address to send updates and corrections to set details.

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By in United Kingdom,

^ Myself, Grahame and Bluemoose are the only ones that update the database.

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By in United States,

Huw, what are some of those sets, I might be able to find out the piece amounts, and I'm sure some other members would be able to help, then Brickset would be even better. Aren't there a few more people who are able to make changes like yellowcastle, vidiator and jpmanalo, or they only allowed to post news, if they even are allowed to

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By in United States,

@Be-Burger: If you look at your collection under "My Sets", each set will list a piece count and RRP (recommended retail price) if the information is available. Those that don't have it are what is not showing in your total. So it's possible to find out which ones are excluded, just not convenient. I agree it would be nice to have a generated list, though.

@1265: ~1900 MISB sets? Wow!

This reinvigorated discussion is motivating me to get all of my sets inventoried, but it's so much harder with my vintage sets because the instructions are boxed away with the pieces, and my record-keeping pre-internet set list was spotty.

What I fantasize about is a quick way to get historical ebay/bricklink values on my sets. About 10 years ago there used to be a website with historical ebay auction data for lego sets (does anyone remember that?), but it hasn't been around for quite some time. Now there are various paid services, but I haven't bothered to check any of them out (can anyone that uses them offer a review?)

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By in United States,

Great news and impressive results. I'd like to echo other people, it would be amazing to be able to add PAB/LugBulk pieces as well. But that would be an insane task to set accomplish on the back end.

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By in United States,

@rocao...I keep an excel database of the sets I own and regularly update true market value of the sets I own. I compare eBay and bricklink prices and take the medium price average for the going rate. eBay only shows prior 30-day auctions but bricklink shows better statistics. One thing I notice is that eBay's historical prices are higher than bricklink prices. Probably because bricklink is not as widely knon as eBay when it comes to buying and selling Lego toys.

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By in United States,

@1265 why do you keep 99% of your Lego MISB? are you going to sell them? Lego are meant to be played with, not kept in boxes. you are definitely missing out on a lot of fun!

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By in United States,

Yeah, its really fun building then playing with your lego sets! At least open a few! I keep a couple sets in box so when I'm bored I can pull one out and brighten the day!

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By in United States,

@legokenny..It's just a weird obsession of collecting something I enjoy. I have and had many different hobbies, but I enjoy collecting Lego the most. One of these days when I have more time to myself I will enjoy building and playing with them, but for now it's just buying them for later.

I have never sold any Lego toys and don't intend to. Funny story....my wife recently asked if she can have one of my sets for one of her friend's son birthday. I held back and told here I couldn't do it......but rather, she had to go out and buy a lego set.

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By in United States,

^I guess I can understand as I have a bit of OCD myself with my castle sets. I keep them put together on display in shelves, I just can't bring myself to take them apart to build something else. But I do have other lego that I let my nephews play with.

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By in United States,

@1265: Would you be willing to share your spreadsheet? If so, I can offer to collaborate to reduce the amount of time you spend to maintain the list. If you don't intend to sell your sets, I would highly recommend buying one set to open and a 2nd to keep MISB. As beautiful as pristine sealed boxes are, something like the Town Modular series assembled as a street front is that much better. And I know what you mean about having so much Lego yet holding back on gifting, but one of the most rewarding things I can do with my Lego is gifting it to a child that truly appreciates it. I've given away some high value sets like Star Wars sets 7163, 7181, 7190, 7191, 10019 and 8480 Technic Space Shuttle, and though I never forget that they're no longer with me, I don't for a second regret it. Of course, I still have my own copies too :P

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By in United States,

I need a life! Thats pretty cool, and considering how weve all contributed well... thats just AMAZING!

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By in United States,

@1265: You sound like me. I am wanting to open the sets, but do not have enough room to do it...
I am planning to buy a house this year (hopefully), partly so I can have the space to have my Lego room and finally break some of these open and make my mega-town/train layout...

I just added mine in (not every set I have, but every different one anyway) and I am at about 526 and I did not include sets I have sold that I once had. ( I had mucho Classic Space and Castle at one time but sold them to clear out room to focus on Town/City and trains) That also does not include the minfigures (are those really 'sets' anyway?)
I have some work to do I guess to catch up to some of the people on the board :-)

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By in United States,

@rocao. Sorry about your request....but I'll rather keep things on the down low. Hope you understand.

I'm not heartless as one might believe. My wife or myself do buy lego sets as gifts. I just have exception to ones I buy for myself and than giving them away.

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By in United States,

madforlegos: Nice to see you added your sets...however, didn't see them listed.

You're right....sometimes it's more about space than time. I've told my wife many times that we need a new house to accommodate my hobby. We'll see!!!

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By in United States,

@1265: No problem at all; I understand. That's why I phrased it asking your willingness. And I don't think you're heartless at all... someone that can't find the joy in Lego would fit that description better :P

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By in United States,

This is a very interesting discussion. Personally, I collect MISB sets and for my personal collection. I am one who believes in QUALITY instead of quantity. I would rather have a collection of 50 of my favorite MISB sets from the 1980's than have 500 MISB sets that were produced in the last 10 years and did not have any real interest to me. But that is the great thing about LEGO, people have different ways of collecting and different ways of enjoying their collections.

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By in United States,

I was wondering why in my "my sets" page it says that I own 40 STAR WARS sets when actually, I own 52 STAR WARS sets? Does the set counter not count multiples of the same sets?

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By in United States,

Wow, 74 sets per person? Someone is accounting for that curve, because I don't think I've gotten any for a couple months now.

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By in United States,

@wolfgang514...Probably you own 40 different Star Wars set....but have multiples of a certain set or sets which accounts for the total of 52 Star Wars sets.

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By in United States,

1265: Yes, that's what I thought.

So what I want to know is, the total number of sets owned by all brickset members combined contain multiples or not? Because if not, then all brickset members combined own a lot more then 1,992,700 sets.

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By in United States,

Hey all, I'm new here, but brickset has quickly become my default website for most of my Lego needs. With all the good conversation in this thread, I'm curious why there isn't a message forum on the site. Can anyone enlighten me?

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By in Austria,

my total pieces count shown in the menu has rolled over the 100.000 mark-)

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By in United Kingdom,

wish i had the money to get the new lego sets! last set i bought was july grrrrrrrrrr. so i have not added to the list. Anyone wanna give me the money for some :-D

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