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Subject: Magnetic Counter clips? rss

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Bruce Sponagle
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Heya all. Having gotten back into wargaming in a big way, and recognizing that some of the games I have will require some sort of means to keep stacks together, I realized I'll have to revisit the magnetic counter clip.

Saw them used extensively in my highschool wargaming club, where sheet metal was used as a backing for maps, and counterclips held all the essential bits together.

Can someone here recommend a specific manufacturer (and if possible, one that sells or distributes to North America)?

I'm looking for both 1/2" and 5/8" counter magnets. Any help you can provide is welcome!

Bruce
 
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Isaac Citrom
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Bruce, nobody makes them anymore. And, as far as I know only one company ever made them. A good supply will be quite hard to find on eBay. I used to have several boxes of the 1/2"-ers, but they disappeared on me.

What grognards who are magnetizing are doing now is using flexible magnetic sheeting. Thre are many companies that produce this type of product in many thicknesses and strengths. There is also sheeting that is magnetic on both sides. The sheets can even come prescored or already cut into various size squares. There are also types that have an adhesive backing as well.

The main issue is sticking them to counters. That means you need a second set of counters and magnets for the flipsides.

Another option that is exercised is scanning the countersheets and creating your own custom counters made out of the magnetic sheeting instead of cardboard.
 
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Ethan McKinney
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Just use HoldIt or other plastic adhesive. Look around for my many and voluminous posts on the subject. Cheap, works well, less intrusive than magnetic counter clips, etc. Just remember the cardinal rule: if you think you've used enough, you've used too much.
 
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Bruce Sponagle
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Crud. Neither solution seems like much of a solution to me...

Given that many of the games I have are long OOP, buying another complete set (or even just finding a second counter set, at a reasonable price) isn't a very cost-effective solution.

Too bad nobody makes the magnetic counter clips anymore - from what I recall, they worked quite well.
 
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J.L. Robert
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Llwch wrote:
Crud. Neither solution seems like much of a solution to me...

Given that many of the games I have are long OOP, buying another complete set (or even just finding a second counter set, at a reasonable price) isn't a very cost-effective solution.

Too bad nobody makes the magnetic counter clips anymore - from what I recall, they worked quite well.


I didn't fare too well with them. I always had a them break on one end or the other, leaving me with only one side clipped into the magnet.

I also remember them being rather pricey for what they were, even back in the day. I can only imagine how much they can fetch these days...
 
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Isaac Citrom
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Yeah, I never liked the counter clips either. The counters were too snug in them. Many of my counters were left with wear marks. Also, flipping counters was a real pain as you had to slide out the counter, flip it and then slide it back in. Each time this damaged the counter a bit.
 
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Bruce Sponagle
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Alright, then... How about a reasonably priced option that allows me to mount the maps & counters, without having to write down counter location on a per hex basis (which, if I play Barbarossa, will be an absolute HEADACHE)...?
 
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Isaac Citrom
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Bruce;

If you find one, please let us know!

I have been thinking about this for years. Basically what we are talking about is magnetizing a game so that it can be played vertically such that you don't need a dedicated room for a year for these monster wargames.

The reason I mentioned two copies of the game is that, in the end, it comes out cheaper to just have two sets of counters than to reprint and mount the counters on magnetic sheeting. Of course, this can be very pricy if we are talking about an out-of-print game.

I'm wondering if there is not a repositionable glue that will not mar the counters. That is, I know of such glues, but I suspect that if left on the counters for any good length of time, they will become permanent or mar the counters in some way. I'm thinking of that blue poster stuff that looks like Silly Putty. Over time, the oils in it bleed into the paper maps they are holding up and leave marks.

I think the counter clips are the best idea. I just think that the one product that we are talking about wasn't a good design. The clips were too thick and obtrusive. I believe a much better and cleverer design can be made.
 
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Bruce Sponagle
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isaacc wrote:
I think the counter clips are the best idea. I just think that the one product that we are talking about wasn't a good design. The clips were too thick and obtrusive. I believe a much better and cleverer design can be made.

I agree 100%, and would vastly prefer a magnetic alternative too.

I'd visit some of the larger gaming 'cons and check out the alternatives, or (even better) talk to some of the companies who make accessories for gaming. If they hear enough of a demand to make an workable option, they may just do it.

Problem is, I live in Toronto, and the large gaming conventions aren't immediately nearby. Plus, I'm saving for a family trip to Florida, with a stopover at Guatemala. So no plans on travelling otherwise, this year.

If someone else wants to see what they can scare up at a gaming 'con, please do so!
 
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Steve Herron
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I think they still sell them but try Decision Games. I did buy some from them a while back.
http://www.decisiongames.com/
 
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J.L. Robert
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Has anyone tried to use poster putty instead of magnets? My only concern would be the potential of the putty staining the counters, especially if they remain on the counter for an extended period of time.
 
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Bruce Sponagle
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Wrote Decision games to enquire about magnetic counter clips. Reply attached here...

Date: Tue, 3 Apr 2007 08:19:12 -0700 (GMT-07:00)
From: "DG Sales Staff" Add to Address Book
Yahoo! DomainKeys has confirmed that this message was sent by earthlink.net. Learn more
To: "Bruce S."
Subject: Re: Magnetic Counter Clips for Wargame Counters
CC: dgsales1@earthlink.net
Dear Sir

The company that was producing these has gone out of business. We
continue to search for a way to manufacture them but at this time we have no
leads. If we are able to produce them in the future it will be posted
on the What's NEw page on our website.

DGSales

 
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Steve Herron
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Llwch wrote:
Wrote Decision games to enquire about magnetic counter clips. Reply attached here...

Date: Tue, 3 Apr 2007 08:19:12 -0700 (GMT-07:00)
From: "DG Sales Staff" Add to Address Book
Yahoo! DomainKeys has confirmed that this message was sent by earthlink.net. Learn more
To: "Bruce S."
Subject: Re: Magnetic Counter Clips for Wargame Counters
CC: dgsales1@earthlink.net
Dear Sir

The company that was producing these has gone out of business. We
continue to search for a way to manufacture them but at this time we have no
leads. If we are able to produce them in the future it will be posted
on the What's NEw page on our website.

DGSales



That is a shame, it would seem like a good business investment for someone. I would hope they will make a come back.
 
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Bill the Pill
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All the different poster putties I've used stained the posters and wall, so I assume a similar problem would occur with the maps and counters.

J.L.Robert wrote:
Has anyone tried to use poster putty instead of magnets? My only concern would be the potential of the putty staining the counters, especially if they remain on the counter for an extended period of time.
 
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Bruce Sponagle
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J.L.Robert wrote:
Has anyone tried to use poster putty instead of magnets? My only concern would be the potential of the putty staining the counters, especially if they remain on the counter for an extended period of time.


From what I recall back in my high school wargaming club days, the counters didn't leave a mark on the maps themselves. Sure, taping the map will inevitably leave some sort of mark on the maps (though this can also act to reinforce the corners), but I don't see how a magnetic cclip could mar the map surface.
 
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J.L. Robert
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Llwch wrote:
J.L.Robert wrote:
Has anyone tried to use poster putty instead of magnets? My only concern would be the potential of the putty staining the counters, especially if they remain on the counter for an extended period of time.


From what I recall back in my high school wargaming club days, the counters didn't leave a mark on the maps themselves. Sure, taping the map will inevitably leave some sort of mark on the maps (though this can also act to reinforce the corners), but I don't see how a magnetic cclip could mar the map surface.


It's not the map I'm concerned with. Those magnet clips hold their counters in fairly tightly, especially the extra-thick ones that are produced these days. Repeated flipping of counters wear down the counters two ways...the printing gets worn by the contact points of the magnet clips, and the edges start to wear when you fail to insert them properly.

My question was...once your map is mounted on the wall, have you considered using poster putty for the counters? Or is the risk of the putty staining the counters and/or map too great?
 
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Isaac Citrom
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J.L.Robert wrote:
Llwch wrote:
J.L.Robert wrote:
Has anyone tried to use poster putty instead of magnets? My only concern would be the potential of the putty staining the counters, especially if they remain on the counter for an extended period of time.


From what I recall back in my high school wargaming club days, the counters didn't leave a mark on the maps themselves. Sure, taping the map will inevitably leave some sort of mark on the maps (though this can also act to reinforce the corners), but I don't see how a magnetic cclip could mar the map surface.


It's not the map I'm concerned with. Those magnet clips hold their counters in fairly tightly, especially the extra-thick ones that are produced these days. Repeated flipping of counters wear down the counters two ways...the printing gets worn by the contact points of the magnet clips, and the edges start to wear when you fail to insert them properly.

My question was...once your map is mounted on the wall, have you considered using poster putty for the counters? Or is the risk of the putty staining the counters and/or map too great?


My experience with that blue poster putty is that it will always stain over time.
 
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Bruce Sponagle
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J.L.Robert wrote:
It's not the map I'm concerned with. Those magnet clips hold their counters in fairly tightly, especially the extra-thick ones that are produced these days. Repeated flipping of counters wear down the counters two ways...the printing gets worn by the contact points of the magnet clips, and the edges start to wear when you fail to insert them properly.


You raise a valid point - and there really isn't much of a solution for that problem... Though I don't expect to do a lot of counter flipping, so hopefully, this will be a non-issue.

J.L.Robert wrote:
My question was...once your map is mounted on the wall, have you considered using poster putty for the counters? Or is the risk of the putty staining the counters and/or map too great?


I really don't want to have the oil from the putty stain the maps...
 
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Ian Buttridge
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Just got done searching for the clips and they aren't available, so here is my plan.

1) Color Photocopy of the counters front and back.

2) Purchase sheet magnet and stick phototcopy to front and back, and then cut out the counters. This way no nead to stick the magnets one by one. Too bad for all your guys that have already punched out your counters .

I'm doing with with the Struggle for Europe series and have made copies of the counters so far. I'm going to order the sheet magnets shortly but dont' expect problems. Sheet magnets come with adhesive on one side so I will only need to glue the other side.


Ian
 
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Isaac Citrom
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Ian;

Make sure you order the right type of magnetic sheeting. Remember that you will want to flip and stack the counters. Magnetic sheeting is polarized and normally if you flip a counter and try to stack it, it will only stack with dissimilar poles.

They have magnetic sheeting that is magnetic on both sides and is freely stackable any side to side. This is accomplished by how they manufacture the sheeting. The sheets are made with thin lines of similar poles that alternate:

NSNSN
NSNSN
NSNSN
NSNSN

When you stack identical sides, they will offset by the thickness of a line. That is why you will want to look at the frequency of lines. The higher the frequency, the less your counters will offset because each line will be thin.

So, for example, double-sided magnetic sheeting that is made at 20 lines per inch will give you 1/2" counters 10 lines wide. When stacked, they will offset by 1/20th of an inch, or 1/10th of a counter.

Also look into the magnetic strength. You will want magnetic sheeting that has a strong enough pull to stack about 8 high, but that depends on your game.

I might suggest that you only order a couple of square feet and run some tests first, before you invest in a slew of footage which ends up not working for you.

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Ben Smith
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isaacc wrote:
My experience with that blue poster putty is that it will always stain over time.


I think the common cause of this is rolling it between your fingers. It picks up the oily deposits from your hand.

With the magnet sheet, if you need to flip one of your new counters, will it still stick? I just tried reversing a fridge-magnet and it just fell.
 
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Ian Buttridge
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Thanks for the info, I ordered some 20mil and 35mil sheet, so I will pick what seems to work better. No way to check the offset as I am buying this site unseen as I am in Korea, so hopefully this works out. I was planning to use a marker if the counter stack got over a certain amount anyway.

I also purchased something called FlexIron to use as backing for the board. This was expensive but I didn't have any idea where to get the sheet metal in Korea, so figured what the heck.


Ian

 
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Thom Hall
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What a drag, I was hoping to find some of these clips. I guess DIY is the only option...
 
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Dan Dolan
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I have about 1500 or so of them in their original plstic boxes. What are they worth now?
 
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Steve Herron
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This may sound bad but have you thought about using straight pins and getting a corkboard wall? We played Fire in the East that way. Yes, it will do longterm damage to the game but it is one mentod to play it verticaly. I had one friend who put up War in Europe that way.
 
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