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Subject: Warped Boards rss

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Andrea Doria
United States
Tennessee
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I have a new and unique problem. I recently picked up two old TAHGC titles; when I first opened the boxes, everything was fine, but after several days in my house, the boards warped. There isn't anything particularly unusual about the humidity, temperature, etc., although I think the previous owner was a smoker and I am not.

1. Does anybody have an idea as to what might have caused this?

2. More importantly, what's probably the best way to fix it? (I've had the boards stacked pressed under books for a few days and it does not seem to have helped).
 
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Darrell Hanning
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Living in Tennessee this time of year, I'm guessing your heater has been running a lot, which dries out the air. Did the boards warp up at the edges, or down? If "up", then I'm thinking they just need to be turned over and exposed for a few days, to equalize the humidity level in the two sides.
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Alan Goodrich
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New York
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I've found that stacks of books or other weighty objects work in some cases, but the fix is almost always not permanent. I tend to unbend warped boards by hand before play - that is, take the board and bend it against the warp. Maybe that seems a little extreme; you certainly don't want to push it too far and wind up breaking/tearing it, and it also is not a permanent solution, but it works well for actually getting the surface flat for game time.
 
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Pete Belli
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This superb GeekList has some great suggestions:

The Surgery: Board Game Repair Tips
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Jack Smith
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It's caused by the difference in humidity, nothing to do with smoking.

Wood is seasoned for this very reason (stored for months under weight before use) That does not happen to board games so you get warp. I'm surprised it does not happen more often to be honest as board games are made and sent all over the world with vastly different humidities. Humidity control in factories are probably not used either as it's expensive and not worth it for cheap game boards.

It's why I prefer paper maps, even for non war games.
 
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Andrea Doria
United States
Tennessee
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Quote:
Living in Tennessee this time of year


Actually, I'm in northern Indiana at the moment; I just don't like to admit it. So you don't know the half of my heater running. I need it more back home in Memphis than y'all in Jacksonville, but it's just not right how cold it gets all the way up here.

Quote:
Did the boards warp up at the edges, or down?


The boards did warp up, so it might just be the humidity. I suppose humidity is really the only thing that makes sense: moisture, alone of things that I can think of, makes wood products warp. I just wasn't sure if smoking changed the humidity levels in a house enough for that to explain it. I suppose it's just meteorological (and my furnace).

Quote:
It's why I prefer paper maps, even for non war games.


I can see some of the advantages of paper maps, but 1) I don't have room to store the big plexiglass sheets needed to maximize a paper map's utility, and 2) I have never had any indication of this likelihood with a mounted map (despite moving several times between US climate zones). I think, ceteris paribus, I still prefer the mounted map, but can see the usefulness of paper.

Many thanks for the pointer to the forum and the other insights.
 
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