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Subject: Preventing shelf wear rss

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Chris Okasaki
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Quote:
I recently pulled my copy of Settlers off the shelf after a few months of not playing, and was surprised to find that the surface of the box that rubbed against the surface of the wooden shelf was fading.


Gamers usually don't worry about storing their games for decades, but people that are into archival storage of photographs, rare documents, or whatever, do exactly that. If you ever look at archival storage boxes, you'll see they are usually advertised as "acid-free" and "lignin-free" because those compounds have bad effects on the material you are trying to store. Wood, as in the wooden shelf you are using, is one major source of those acids and lignins. I have no idea if that is what is happening here, but it certainly could be.
 
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Swood
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Hmmm... there's only two reasons I can think of as to why your boxes might be showing signs up wear even though they haven't been moved that much:

1) Vibration - If the shelf is picking up vibrations from something like a refrigerator on the other side of the wall (or a sound-system), the ultra-tiny movement of the shelf could wear the boxes over time.

2) Chemical - Are the shelves newly constructed? Newly painted? Stained?

Just some thoughts that might help get to the root cause.

 
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Sterling Babcock
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So to prevent the acid of the wood/stain, should one line the shelves?

With what?

Shelf liner?

Felt material?

Is there some sort of acid free felt like material?

Would dust accumulate in the felt and cause scratches?

Would felt reduce vibration?
 
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Jeff
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One thing you might try is that removable clear plastic stuff that is most often used for covering books. It looks like laminate but the key is that it is removable. I just posted a picture showing how I use it with a game the other day (http://www.boardgamegeek.com/image/130825). I use it all the time for my field books at work. Locally, I've only been able to find it during back to school sales at my local office supply super store so I stock up then for the rest of the year. It comes in a roll that is 13.5" x 48". I would suggest using this stuff on the places where wear is most likley. Maybe on the edges on the bottom of the box or something. Its nearly invisible except that its shiny when the light hits it. It also comes off easily.

I checked a roll I still have wrap on... here is the UPC: 0075353222003. If that doesn't help, there's a web address that says www.duckproducts.com.

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Barry Kendall
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Clear plastic wrap--the heavy-duty kind--would also work. I'd stay away from the kitchen shelf-type contact shelf paper because it usually is decorated or has a dyed coloring that could react with or discolor box inks.

While we're on the subject, folks, don't forget about the ravages of ultra-violet light. It would be prudent to get UV coating for windows in the room/s where your games are stored, if they are exposed.
 
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Mark Mokszycki
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Just do what I do. Store your boxes suspended on an air cushion a la a hovercraft or similar billion-dollar.
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Billy McBoatface
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duckweed wrote:
Just do what I do. Store your boxes suspended on an air cushion a la a hovercraft or similar billion-dollar.
That's ridiculous. The boxes will be bobbing up and down all the time, bumping into things, ruining their corners.

If you really want to get serious, store them in individual containers made of non-reactive components (glass would work well), then fill those containers with pure nitrogen (to prevent oxidation), and keep them in the dark to prevent light from fading the boxes.

Oh, and never take them out, for any reason. Don't even think about playing them! Do you have any idea what finger grease does to paper over time? gulp
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Lexingtonian
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Since someone else on the 'Geek pointed out that wood can damage game boxes, I've been thinking of lining my shelves with something. I may just go to my favorite arts-and-crafts store and ask if they have some plastic material to lay down on my shelves. Something thin enough to cut with scissors, but thick enough not to wrinkle.
 
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Billy McBoatface
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jl4130 wrote:
Note: I am equally careful with any other paper products, be they books, letters, CCGs, or otherwise. Go ahead, mock me now. We'll see who will be laughing when my Young Jedi CCG collection is worth billions! Well, at the very least, it'll be physically playable in thirty years. Gameplay-wise, well, that's another issue with that game.....
Heh, my comment was at least partly because I have urges to be ultra-uptight about preserving things, but I fight hard not to be! Every time I see a new scratch on a San Juan card, I get this feeling of terror and thoughts of "Oh no! It'll be unplayable soon! Get card sleeves! But 10 more copies! Scan every card so that I'll be able to custom-make new decks after it goes out of print!"

Then I always take a deep breath, tell myself "it's only a game, the scratch is because we had fun playing it," and get on with my life. But I could easily be storing all games in nitrogen-packed glass containers and refusing to play them...!
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Swood
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When I was in high school in the mid 80s I was taught a life lesson by an anonymous fellow skateboard punk. This guy will never know it, but he affected my life.

I had just purchased and assembled my first custom skateboard, and it looked really nice... painted it myself. I had the thing decked out with all sorts of rails and protectors.

I ran into this guy at a local skating area and the first and only thing he ever said to me was... "Dude, don't baby your board." Embarassed, that night I removed all of the protection gear from the board.

Damned if he wasn't right. Not only did the thing perform better without all that protection gear... but it actually looked better as it gathered battle scars. I can't tell you how many times in my life I've had to remind myself... "Don't baby your board." It allows you to let go and just enjoy the moment. Really good advice.

Cheers.
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Sterling Babcock
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I am with you on just playing your games and enjoying them. However, I would like to maintain them well when not in use.

- If you line the shelf with plastic, won't dust and dirt accumulate and just cause scratches?

- If you put plastic on the boxes, won't that leave a residue? It kind of takes away from the box.

- Again, would lining the shelf with felt help with the acidity of the stain? Or is the acidity of a bookshelf just a rumor?

** Is there a way to test a material for acidity, like felt from a craft store?
 
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Christine K
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For the last post, I know that when I was in the scrapbooking section of AC Moore or Michael's or some store like that they had a pen that could be used to detect the acidity of paper and the like. I am not sure how it would work for wood, but it might be worth checking out.

If you don't mind wandering in the scrapbook section, that is!
 
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David Tolin
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sbabcock wrote:
I am with you on just playing your games and enjoying them. However, I would like to maintain them well when not in use.

- If you line the shelf with plastic, won't dust and dirt accumulate and just cause scratches?

- If you put plastic on the boxes, won't that leave a residue? It kind of takes away from the box.

- Again, would lining the shelf with felt help with the acidity of the stain? Or is the acidity of a bookshelf just a rumor?

** Is there a way to test a material for acidity, like felt from a craft store?


There are acid test kits available, but I'm not sure where to buy them. You could try asking in some scrapbook forums, since they seem to know a lot about these types of things.

One possibility is treating your games to prevent acid damage in the first place, though. There's a product called Archival Mist that you can spray directly onto paper materials to protect them. It's pretty expensive, though, so I don't really think it would be worth it. There's a cheaper product from Krylon called PreserveIt, but it actually leaves a slightly rough texture wherever you spray it. That's okay for photographs in a scrapbook, but I wouldn't spray it on my games.

If you do feel like springing for the Archival Mist product, though, my understanding is that it evaporates entirely except for the miscroscopic magnesium oxide particles that protect the paper... meaning no film or texture left behind.
 
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Scott A. Reed
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I do a little protection on some of my games by sliding them into a record sleeve. A number of standard-sized boxes fit just fine (alea large box; Goldsieber mid-size box; the rectangular flat-box of Samurai, Santiago, Maharaja, and obviously anything smaller) and there is the added benefit that the sleeve keeps the lid from coming off if they are stored on their sides, or while in transit. Though I can't fit every game into these sleeves, nor do I put every game in a sleeve, the physical barrier does help somewhat in reducing the shelf wear.
 
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Jeff
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sbabcock wrote:

- If you put plastic on the boxes, won't that leave a residue? It kind of takes away from the box.


Not the stuff I was referring to up in my other post. Comes off cleaner than a post it note. Besides, I was thinking to just put that stuff on the edges and corners... you know, where the wear is. I don't do it but for those who are into the whole preserve it thing, it might work.
 
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David Heiligmann
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As a long time comic collector, and a librarian by profession, I would suggest lining the shelves with acid-free Mylar. It's made of the same material as comic book sleeves. You may want to check to see if they make sleeves large enough for games, or whether you can buy Mylar by the roll and do it yourself.
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...game pleasure in wood
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kingkong1933 wrote:
As a long time comic collector, and a librarian by profession, I would suggest lining the shelves with acid-free Mylar. It's made of the same material as comic book sleeves. You may want to check to see if they make sleeves large enough for games, or whether you can buy Mylar by the roll and do it yourself.


It's an older thread but I have some questions...

1. Where is the best place to buy rolls of Mylar film (best price, good service, etc.)?

2. Is there an alternative to Mylar that is cheaper but still durable? What about acetate or rolls of laminating machine film?

3. If I am looking at COMPLETELY covering both the upper and lower box-halves of board games, is there a certain kind of tape that I would use to secure the plastic film to the inside of the box? (like the tape used in libraries with dust cover protector film)?

4. I was thinking of using clear plastic self-adhesive tabs to both secure the plastic film (instead of tape) and reinforce the corners inside of the box. The plastic tabs I envisioned were of a similar material to retail plastic hanging tabs (like 3M ScotchPad Hang Tabs #1075) but completely backed with adhesive, without the delta-shaped hole, and scored in the middle so they fold in half perfectly. Does anyone know if a product like this exists? (I've seen softcover books in libraries protected by very thick sheets of self-adhesive clear plastic.)

Thanks for the help.
 
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Dave Coscio
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There's a sort of cling-wrap you can get at Home Depot and similar stores. It's like what you see being used to hold things together on pallets but it's a smaller role aimed at individuals who are moving. I used it on our last move and it was great. I wrapped a bunch of books with it. I suppose it might work well for games.
 
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Jim Stevens
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Interesting discussion!

I've had these same concerns and I actually did line my shelves with felt. I went to a local Hobby Lobby and purchased a ton of thick felt. I bought double sided tape and laid that down on the shelf, then cut the felt to fit the shelves.

Result: EXCELLENT. Moving games in and out of the felt lined shelves do not cause the felt to lift and the wear that was appearing previously has not progressed.

I can take some photos if users are interested.
 
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Well, I'm carrying my games around, so they show other signs of abuse. The shelf is only a minor problem. While it bothers me a little bit, I try not to care too much. I'm more concerned about the stuff inside those boxes.
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Does Mayday make sleeves for game boxes yet?
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Adam
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Here's a much easier solution to a worn Catan box:



I purchased one on e-bay for $35.00 not too long ago.


Something doesn't quite add up though:

You first discovered Euros last November
You already have over 400 games in your collection
You are concerned with the condition of your Settlers box

Congratulations, you've created an algebraic paradox!


(Yes, I've edited this post 7 times)
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Andy Andersen
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The easiest solution would be to stop worrying about your games and send them to me.

Problem solved. cool
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Chris Schenck
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Dings and scratches on a game box mean that the box is doing its job of protecting the content. Do you get upset when your umbrella gets wet?

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adamb2k9 wrote:
Something doesn't quite add up though:

You first discovered Euros last November
You already have over 400 games in your collection
You are concerned with the condition of your Settlers box

Congratulations, you've created an algebraic paradox!


Dude, the thread was started in 2006.
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