Moving Your Military Collection
Collections of military equipment are common these days, dating from the early American wars to more recent conflicts like Vietnam and Korea. If you're a military enthusiast, it's likely that you have a few collectibles from that particular era. Let's take a look at the safest way to move these pieces.
Until the end of World War 2, swords and other sharp weapons were incredibly useful to infantry. In some areas where conflict remains active today, sharps are still the choice weapon. They're easy to use, fast to craft, and simple to keep in good shape. They require no ammunition and need very little upkeep other than sharpening.
And they're relatively cheap to replace in the event of breakage.
However, many states and cities require special permits to move large blades or those over a certain size. Check with your moving company to find out what special permits you require, if any, during its inspection. The movers will know your local regulations.
Patches and Insignia
Patches, insignia, buttons, and other collectibles in this vein are typically in good shape. Historically, these sorts of uniform "flash" or other notables simply had to be. These uniforms were out in enormously different types of weather, brutalized through warfare, and generally given one very big runaround in terms of quality.
The best way to take care of these is by packing the case they are kept in. If these are not in display cases, you may consider having them mounted prior to the move. Having these pieces mounted and permanently cased will keep them behind two protective barriers: the case and the box they're in.
Guns, staves, and other weapons should be in nonviolent order. Guns should have their firing pins removed and placed in other boxes or carried by the person moving, away from the rest of the shipment. Stick weapons should have all bladed ends covered in foam and wrapped with tape, rendering them useless and safe in case they happen to fall during unpacking.
Essentially, these weapons should not be "live" in any meaning of the word or allowed to become that condition during transport. Again, as with blades, the rules and regulations vary slightly throughout the states. In doubt? Contact your moving company or your local authorities for answers.
Historically accurate, or antique, uniforms are some of the most expensive military collectibles. Finding a perfect-condition uniform from your preferred time period is like hitting the jackpot, especially if it comes with high-ranking insignia of the time. Dress uniforms, in particular, are very difficult to find pre-WW2.
To move these, we strongly recommend having them professionally cleaned at a trusted source. Have them sealed in vacuum-sealed bags and then hung in wardrobe boxes. You may use separators if the cloth is very sensitive or beginning to become threadbare.
Foreign Military Collectibles
For allied military collectibles, simply follow the instructions above depending on the type and size of the piece. For enemy military collectibles, be aware that these are sensitive pieces. If you have politically offensive pieces, such as German memorabilia in your WW2 collection, you may want to ask for obscuring packaging.
This is because many cities and states have laws regarding enemy memorabilia. While you are likely aware of this if you are a collector, remember that these laws change depending on what state you are in. Check local guidelines before moving.
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