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Subject: stickers and block games - recommended tools? rss

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Tanner Thurman
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I've always avoided games with blocks in the past. I didn't want to take the time to apply stickers to the blocks and wasn't sure how to get them on align correctly. With the release of Strike of the Eagle, I think I'm going to make the attempt.

Are there recommended tools to apply the stickers, instead of trying to do it by hand?
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Kent Reuber
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I've stickered a number of block games and I've never used any sort of tool. What I do is to look at the size of the label compared to the size of the block. After peeling the sticker from it's backing, I align the sticker with one side of the block leaving the right amount of empty space on the borders, then press the label into place.
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Rui Serrabulho
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You have to, at least from a distance, look as if you know what you're doing, and I can manage that.
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I use my bare hands and some times do not stay pleased with the results, but that´s life...
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Wulf Corbett
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Unless you lack fine motor control in your fingers, or are truly obsessive compulsive about sticker alignment, there's no need for tools. Some won't be absolutely straight - some die-cut counters aren't either.
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Lucius Cornelius
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Not a tool, but if you know any nail salon ladies.
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Stephen Harper
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X-acto knife, glue stick, good light, and patience.

As others have said, I first gain an impression of the size of the sticker relative to the block. Then, I hold the block in my right hand, and sticker in the left (I am left-handed) and lightly place, without pressing down, the sticker over the block, lining up the top and right side of the sticker with the block, leaving the margin that I want on those two sides, and then release the sticker. I then eye-ball it for a moment, seeing that the sticker looks fairly square to the block, and I press down on the upper left corner, applying the pressure from that corner down towards the center of the block. If it starts to look too out of alignment, I will stop, gently pry up the left corner, re-align the sticker to the block, and start the process again. If it looks good, then from the center of the block I press/smooth out from there to all the remaining corners. It sounds really involved, but after a couple of times it goes pretty quick. Most labels go on with only one try. Maybe 5% or less take two tries. Occasionally, one or two stickers out of the batch, typically Columbia stickers, require the glue stick.

The stickers for Strike of the Eagle were really easy to work with, and I had no problems.

Note: I use an x-acto knife with a thin pointed blade to pry up one corner of the sticker from the sheet, and then grasp that corner with my fingers and gently lift the sticker from the sheet.

Hope this helps. Don't despair! With a little practice it becomes second nature.

Enjoy your block games!

P.S. Stickering block games, for me, takes no more time to do than cutting out the counters of an equivalent-sized counter wargame. But perhaps that is because I use the same x-acto blade to cut out the counters. I like nice, clean corners on my counters!
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Paul Brillantes
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I have done all the C&C Ancients and C&C Nappy's.

I used the red handled x-acto blade in the image below.



I remove the sticker from the sheet, stick it to the last 1/8" of the flat side of the blade and lay the handle on the table.

The handle is 3/4" (19mm) in diameter. When laying on the table that puts the blade at about 3/8" (9mm) off the table. The blocks for C&C are 8mm thick which puts the sticker 1 or 2 mm's above the block.

Shift blade and block until your OCD is minimal and press down lightly on the sticker. Pull blade out. Press down on sticker again as hard as you feel you need to.

I did this while watching TV, mainly during comercials. Now that I primarily use Netflx and such there are no comercials, but I still get it done.



Editted to add 'the last 1/8" of'
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An x-acto knife with a chisel blade (aka flat blade) works nicely.



The blade will allow you to easily lift the sticker off the backing and position it perfectly onto the block.
Kind of like this:



This is also considerably easier and quicker than just using your fingers.
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James Boyd
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kentreuber wrote:
I've stickered a number of block games and I've never used any sort of tool. What I do is to look at the size of the label compared to the size of the block. After peeling the sticker from it's backing, I align the sticker with one side of the block leaving the right amount of empty space on the borders, then press the label into place.


+1
 
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Nagato Fujibayashi

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Unless your hands shake a great deal, no need to use anything. The only tip I would give you is remove any dust from the blocks with a piece of soft cloth and have your fingers clean prior to application. Any oily substance may weaken the sticking power of the stickers. After you apply them, rub them gently on the block with something soft( I do it with my knuckles usually), especially at the edges and corners.

 
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Jon
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A pair of tweezers to pick the sticker up after first exposing a corner by back folding the sheet carefully (at the point of attack).

Then just eyeballing the sticker onto the block followed by a light press with a finger and a firm press with a tissue to lock it in place.

Good luck. Try not to stress out about it.
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Runs with scissors
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I think that a knife would work better than tweezers. I usually use tweezers. If it looks crooked after I've put it on the block, I apply pressure with my thumb. I can usually get it to slide a little and straighten out that way.
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Jared Quintana
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I use my fingers but sometime tweezers.

Not sure if anyone else does this but after I apply the sticker I "paint" on a coat of Satin Varnish to cover the sticker plus the edge of exposed wood.

I used to have the stickers on my Command and Colors: Ancients fall off but have not had any as of yet after I started to "seal" them.

I have not tried the spray sealer yet. Maybe for my next block game.

Hmmm, Command and Colors Napoleonics.....
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Tom Willcockson
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The one trick that I do is after I have carefully lined up the sticker and left a little margin, I very lightly let the sticker adhere to the block. If at that point I think it needs a minor adjustment by being shifted a little or rotated slightly I make that manipulation with my thumb as I am pressing the sticker down to make it firmly adhere. Most of the time it works and I am able to shift it slightly as it is pressed down. Or perhaps it is just that I think it has, but it usually ends up looking right.

However the question I have is does anyone use a spray fix to protect the sticker after it is down. Just got a copy of Sekigahara from GMT and I'm concerned that putting the blocks in the draw bag is going to put some wear and tear on the stickers unless I spray them with something. Does anyone spray their blocks and if so with what? ...Just noticed the post above.I suppose I could use a varnish as long as it doesn't yellow the stickers.
 
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Will (JR) Todd
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My two hands and a lot of light.
 
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Charles Stampley
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The one item I find indispensable to stickering is a six pack of beer.
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Bill Lawson
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I use my big fat fingers.
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I have stickered some of the C&C blocks by hand, others I placed the sticker with an x-acto craft knife. They are all fine, but the ones I did with the knife are neater. It took a long time, but I knew it would before I started.
 
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Andrew Migliore
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just use my hands no tools... done the C&C games like Commands & Colors: Ancients, Commands & Colors: Napoleonics, and other block games Strike of the Eagle. The most important thing is to make sure the blocks are square before applying the label, that is the block is defect free.
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