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in mothballs

In storage, either literally or figuratively. Mothballs—little balls composed of a pungent chemical used to deter moths—are often kept in closets, attics, and other places where clothes are stored. I'm so glad that I can finally get my summer clothes out and put my winter clothes back in mothballs. That plane is in mothballs while we wait for a new shipment of parts. I did like your idea, Tom, but we have to keep it in mothballs for now while we finish our outstanding projects.
See also: mothball

bring (something) out of mothballs

1. To take an object out of storage after a period of disuse. Mothballs—little balls composed of a pungent chemical used to deter moths—are often kept in closets, attics, and other places where clothes are stored. Now that the weather is getting colder, it's time to bring our winter clothes out of mothballs. This new shipment of parts will allow us to bring the plane out of mothballs soon.
2. By extension, to begin to use or implement something. I did like your idea, Tom, but we can't bring it out of mothballs until we finish our outstanding projects.
See also: bring, mothball, of, out

bring something out of mothballs

Fig. to bring something out of storage and into use; to restore something to active service. They were going to bring a number of ships out of mothballs, but the war ended before they needed them.
See also: bring, mothball, of, out

put something in mothballs

1. Lit. to put something into storage in mothballs. He put his winter coat in storage with mothballs each fall and had to air it out for a week each spring.
2. Fig. to put something into storage or reserve. (Often said of warships.) The navy put the old cruiser in mothballs and no one ever expected to see it again. Let's just put this small bicycle in mothballs until we hear of a child who can use it.
See also: mothball, put

put in mothballs

Defer indefinitely or for a very long time, as in We've put the plans for a new library in mothballs. This expression alludes to storing woolen clothing or other items with marble-size balls of naphthalene or camphor to prevent them from being damaged by moths. [1940s]
See also: mothball, put

in mothballs

unused but kept in good condition for future use.
See also: mothball
References in periodicals archive ?
Saudi Aramco received a certificate for being the first company to use this mothballing and scraping process.
On a summer-winter average basis, the capacity identified for mothballing totals 661 MW and the capacity identified for retirement totals 66 MW.
SSI had announced earlier this month it was halting production of iron and steelmaking at its Redcar blast furnace, as well as the mothballing of one of its coke ovens, raising fears about the future of steelmaking in the area.
As a consequence, the already low utilisation of the power plant will decline further and wholesale market prices are on a very low level, so RWE Generation will respond by temporarily mothballing the plant.
Tata Steel said the temporary mothballing of the mill at its Llanwern site in Newport, South Wales will take immediate effect.
THE first anniversary of the mothballing of Teesside Cast Products' - TCP - blast furnace will be marked this weekend with a symbolic illumination of the site in Redcar.
The EU policy he refers to (the EU Emissions Trading Scheme) has not "given" Corus any money at all, never mind "pounds 600m", and most definitely is not the reason for the mothballing.
STEELMAKER Corus is to begin the process of mothballing its huge Redcar plant, which will see the loss of up to 1,600 jobs and potential industrial action.
Corus said: "The company has today begun discussions with employees and their representatives about what can be done to mitigate the impact of mothballing the plant on the 1,920 employees.
But a source told me: "To talk of mothballing is nonsense.
Approximately 60% of Muskegon's workforce, 365 employees from a total of 585, will be affected by the paper machine shut down and pulp mill mothballing.
Unions have warned that a mothballing could cost the taxpayer hundreds of millions of pounds.
But now he has begun consultation on the redundancies, which would see almost all the workers laid off, and the mothballing of the site.
THE steel industry boss who announced the mothballing of a major Corus plant in Teesside is to leave the company in October, it emerged at the weekend.