You’ve got to ask yourself a question: ‘do I love my minis?’ Well, do you, punk?!
Over the past weeks many people have asked me which army transports I use to protect my armies in general, and my flier-heavy Elysian guard in particular. Over the last couple of years a plethora of companies specializing in transport systems and carrying bags have made their way onto the market which means that we’re no longer forced into using the good ol’ GW hard cases. So which army transport do I recommend if you feel like spending some extra rupies on your already expensive hobby toys? Well, the answer is as boring as it is simple: choose a foam tray carrying bag that fits your army’s needs. What I mean by this is that you should always try to look beyond the neat pocket-filled, coffee mug-carrying, waterproof, 2+ save tactical bag itself, and actually take a look inside it. What quality is the foam? Does it offer a way of optimizing space? Will you be able to add new miniatures to your army or collection without having to buy a new bag?
To be honest, I haven’t tried all of the army transports out there, but I think I’ve squeezed and looked inside enough cases to narrow down my choice of system to two brands which fit my needs perfect. In this post, I will give you a short review and run through some of my thoughts on the Feldherr and KR Multicase armybags.
KR Multicase – the Swiss armyknife of miniature cases.
By the looks of it, this simple cardboard box doesn’t really give the impression of being anything but a neatly folded pizza box. But as a famous chinese mystic once said: “There’s more to this Hobbit than meets the eye.” And what a pizza box this is! The actual card of the box is sturdy enough to support and give it all the stability needed, but the real gem of the KR system shines through once you take a look at their line of foam trays. The entire range is made up of customized foam inlays tailored to fit any army or miniature addict’s needs. Do you play mechanized? No worries, just get the tray that can deliver more vehicles than a soviet t-34 factory. Footslogging blob lover? Here, use this tray that eats fifty 28mm heroic scale infantry, take four by the way because they all fit into your slim pizza box. Can’t make up your mind? Well take one tray for infantry, one for monstrous infantry, and one combo-tray that fits a flier and some tanks! The possibilities to tailor your loadout are almost endless and since all slots are custom cut, there’s no space on a tray that will ever go unused. The blue foam itself is top quality: soft enough to protect your miniatures without ruining your paintjob, but sturdy enough to give support when multiple trays are stacked on top of each other. Not only does this system offer you a way of carrying your army (yes, there’s a plastic handle on the side of the box) for a cheap price, it offers a great way of storing your armies when not being on campaign which is one of the most important things for me given the size of my current apartment. Everything in the KRM line is made to fit into the card case, which in turn is symmetrical enough to fit neatly into a wardrobe or on top of a bookshelf. Personally, I use multiple spare foam trays stacked on a shelf for storing miniatures, then, when it’s time for war I simply just switch them with the ones in my card case. Easy as that. If you feel like spending the extra money, you could always upgrade yourself with a Kaiser bag later on, which carries two or three card cases plus armybooks and dice depending on the price, which is neat if you live in a rainy area and use a bike to get to your gaming club.
All in all, the KR Multicase system fits my needs perfectly. The foam is top quality and the low prices allow for new trays to be purchased whenever I add miniatures to my collection. One of the key factors of the KRM line is the symmetric measurements of both trays and card cases that also allows me to store them in my wardrobe or on top of shelves. I give KR Mutlicase nine ‘direct hits’ out of ten. Final score: 9/10.
Feldherr MAXI – A German contender.
‘Feldherr’ is a relatively young German company that offers a range of bags from skirmish to army size. I own both the MAXI and MINI Plus which I think are the only bags a gamer will ever need. The MINI Plus is just a bit thicker than then standard MINI and thus allows it to carry either two Infinity forces or roughly about 1500pts of Flames of War models. The MAXI on the other hand swallows somewhere around 2000pts of Warhammer Fantasy models depending on your choice of foam inlays. The foam itself is a bit softer than the blue KRM foam but seem to be of the same quality when it comes to protecting miniatures. My only bad experience of Feldherr foam is that some of the glue between the layers seem to get stuck on sharp edges of model bases and pointy tips like swords or spears, since they can easily get in between the layers of each foam tray. Feldherr offers the same type of customized foam as KRM and thus allows you to choose a loadout that fits your type of models and army while still maximizing the use of space on each inlay. One of Feldherr’s many neat solutions for maximizing space is their packed 9×5 infantry tray, with angle cut slots that allows it to fit an extra row of miniatures compared to the old GW 9×4 tray. The quality of the MAXI bag is also good. A sturdy shoulder strap keeps the bag secured (even when biking in heavy Malmö traffic) during transport, while the red silk like lining gives it a nice touch of class only fit for an already addictive hobby.
If you only want to buy one bag and set of foam trays ever, and don’t feel like apartment storage is a problem, I would go for the Feldherr since you get a completely outfitted MAXI bag at a relatively low price. I give Feldherr seven ‘direct hits’ out of ten as some (but not all) of my foam trays have had troubles with their glue. Final score: 7/10.