June 2014 | The Mad Puzzler | A Jigsaw Puzzle Blog

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Monument Valley Panorama Day 2

I started on this one last night and it's going amazingly quickly.  I just finished the sky and the edges of the rock formations that border the sky.

Educa Monument Valley - 1000 pieces
Started 6/28/14
Total time: 5 hours, 9 minutes

Educa Monument Valley 1000 piece panorama jigsaw puzzle

At first I had an issue with some edge pieces that didn't fit in, but I eventually found the right spot.  There seems to be a pattern to the cut such that pieces fit where they don't actually go.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Tiger Photomosaic Finished!

I finished it up pretty quickly!  I read somewhere that it can take 4 times as long to do a photomosaic puzzle - I'd believe that.  It looks awesome and I'll definitely be mounting it soon.

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic
Started 6/21/14 - Finished 6/28/14
Sort time 17 hours, 2 minutes
Assembly time 11 hours, 40 minutes

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle

Tiger Photomosaic Day 7

I made some good progress tonight on the Tiger Photomosaic.  I guess the way I sorted is paying off because it's really coming together quickly, and I love it even more than I thought I would.  I know that as soon as my sister sees it she's going to want one!  I don't think I'll have a problem getting it finished tomorrow at this rate.

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic
Started 6/21/14
Sort time 17 hours, 2 minutes
Assembly time 7 hours, 57 minutes

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle

Some new puzzles arrived - Ravensburger's African Animals and Educa'a Monument Valley, along with a second set of Ravensburger Sort and Go trays.  They're really great for keeping the cats out of the loose pieces!  I think I'll start on Monument Valley next so that I can see how an Educa does when mounting with the 3M positionable adhesive.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Tiger Photomosaic Day 6

I finally finished sorting last night, and started on the assembly tonight.  Since I spent so long sorting, the assembly is going pretty quickly.  Messing with the blog layout the last few days has taken up puzzle time, but I'm glad to be making good progress.  I hope you guys like the new look and feel as much as I do.  The old comments were lost but I think in the long run I can live with that.

The builder for our new house is supposed to break ground on Monday and it's supposed to be done within 5 months.  Yay!  We're ready to get out of the 2-bedroom apartment we've been living in temporarily, plus I'll have plenty of room for puzzles. :)

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic
Started 6/21/14
Sort time 17 hours, 2 minutes
Assembly time 3 hours, 42 minutes

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Redesign / Maintenance

puzzle pieces I'm performing some maintenance to update the look and feel of my blog.  Please excuse the appearance and any unreachable pages in the meantime.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic Day 3

Started 6/21/14 - 12 hours and 46 minutes

Well... I'm still sorting.  At first I sorted by color, but then I realized that wasn't ideal.  I've been sorting into 6 sections so that I can assemble them on working boards.  With this one it's hard to guess at a glance where a piece goes, so I've had to find each one on the poster first.  I don't mind though, I'm not in a hurry.  Isn't relaxing the point anyway?  I should be done sorting tomorrow night and then I can dig in!

One of our cats made off with a piece and chewed it a little but you can hardly tell.  I guess I need to be more hawk-like when keeping an eye on them.  They're so sneaky! 

I'm obviously using the poster a lot for this one, so I put clear matte Con-Tact paper on the front and taped it to a small piece of foam board.  This is nice since I can prop the poster up.

I discovered an app called Timelog that I like for time tracking.  You can configure "categories" which I'll use for each puzzle.  It totals the time spent in the current week and month, as well as total time.  Hopefully I will remember to use it, since I'm curious how much time I'm actually spending.


I have taken a a picture of the poster.  You can hardly tell that it's on there, and the matte finish has less glare than the plain poster.

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Lightning Striking Tree & Tiger Photomosaic

Tiger Photomosaic - Started 6/21/14
Lightning Striking Tree - Started 6/11/14 - paused 6/15/14 - started & paused again 6/21/14

I started Lightning Striking Tree up again yesterday.  I spent all day on it and didn't make a lot of progress.  There's so much of almost the same color!  I was also getting annoyed at how many bent pieces there are.  I will count them at the end.

Eurographics Lightning Striking Tree 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle

I felt the need to work on something that isn't dark grey, so I started the Tiger Photomosaic.  I love photomosaic puzzles!  Thank you Buffalo Games for including a poster to make it easier on the eyes.  This one will be fun!

Buffalo Games Tiger Photomosaic 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Update: How to Mount and Hang a Jigsaw Puzzle Without Glue, Optionally in Panels | Underwater 2000 Pieces

Last night I worked on jigsaw puzzle mounting attempt to mount Underwater in 2 panels.  I ran into an issue where the edge of the foam board was in the way.  I knob from one side could go up, but a knob from the other side could not go down, because the edge of the foam board in the center was directly below.

Today I cut away a sliver of foam board from one half in the center, to allow the halves to separate.  This worked really well.  Originally I shouldn't have put the foam board over the center area where I didn't put the adhesive.

Foam board cut away:

The halves separated:

How to mount and hang a jigsaw puzzle without glue

Close up:

The halves re-joined - you can't tell!

Read about additional mounting projects here.

How to Mount and Hang a Jigsaw Puzzle Without Glue, Optionally in Panels | Underwater 2000 Pieces

In this jigsaw puzzle mounting experiment, I built off of lessons learned in previous attempts.

Read about additional mounting projects here.

Note: The bond of this adhesive becomes permanent when pressure is applied, but it is positionable until then.

previously tried gluing in sections and using contact paper to create panels, but wasn't happy with those results.

I came across the 3M adhesive below in a search for larger foam boards, which I found hereherehere (not what the link sounds like!), and here.  During that search, I found self-adhesive foam board at the above links and here and here, which lead me to the 3M adhesive.  At some point I'll order some of the large foam boards for really large puzzles, but they have extra shipping charges due to the size.  I used this 3M 568 Positionable Mounting Adhesive in attempt 3 and was very happy with it.

In this attempt, I'm continuing a proof of concept to make the panels separable by adhering each half of the puzzle independently to foam boards while keeping both halves interlocked.

Ready to mount!

1) I drew the outlines where I needed to cut the foam boards.  My hubby did this part and he did a much better job than I have before!

2) I wrapped the edges of each foam board with black duct tape

3) In order to make the halves separable, I need to not put adhesive along the joining line between the halves.  I made pencil marks to remind myself where to stop on each half.

4) Readying the adhesive, protective sheet, and supplied squeegee used to press it down

5) Adhesive placed on the left side.  When doing this half, I measured the size needed, used wax paper between my fingers and the adhesive to keep it from sticking, and cut it to size with an x-acto knife.  The wax paper doesn't stick with a light touch, but the with firmer pressure needed to hold it in place while cutting it, the wax paper did stick and brought up some of the adhesive when I removed it.

6) On the right side, I decided instead to lay the adhesive down and then carefully cut it along the edge with an x-acto knife.  With just a light touch it's easy to move without issues to get it positioned just right.  I liked this method much better.

7) On the remaining area I overlapped it and trimmed off the excess.  The adhesive doesn't stick to the backing paper on the existing area, so this worked well.

Both sides done!

A close-up of the center area

8) I peeled the backing off of the left side

9) I decided to place the foam board on the left side before peeling the backing off of the right side.  While I did this my husband held the foam board on the right side in place so that I could get it lined up well.  I put the center part of the foam board down first.  After placing it down I pressed it down by hand.

The foam boards meet in the blank area in the middle.

This is what it looks like as you're peeling the back paper off.  The adhesive transfers from the backing to the puzzle from the pressure put on it by the squeegee.

A close-up of the adhesive on the back of the puzzle.  It gets into the cracks just a bit so that as you're peeling the backing off of the puzzle, the pieces don't move at all.  With this puzzle I didn't find it so lose that pieces would move apart when sliding them, but pieces would disconnect when picking up a section.  I'm glad that wasn't an issue here.

10) I placed the foam board on the right side and pressed down by hand.

11) Preparing to apply pressure to the front with the supplied squeegee.

All done!

How to mount and hang a jigsaw puzzle without glue

12) This is where I tested the ultimate goal - separating the halves.  This is also where I realized an oversight.  OOPS!  A knob from the right can go up, but a knob from the left can't go down, because the foam board from the right half is below it.  Well then.  I also tried carefully bending the halves upward towards each other, but no luck there.

I'm open to any ideas, but I think what I need to do is carefully cut away a sliver of the foam board from each half along the middle so that it's no longer in the way.

Update: I was able to resolve the issue - read more here.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Ravensburger Underwater Done!

Started 6/16/14 - Finished 6/19/14

Well I stayed up too late and ended up finishing Underwater, yay!  I got the bottom half finished and then ended up detaching it to make the top half easier to reach.  I'll be starting back up on Lightning Striking Tree this weekend.

Ravensburger Underwater 2000 piece jigsaw puzzle

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Ravensburger Underwater is Coming Together!

Started 6/16/14

I made more progress tonight than I thought I would.  I got some of the corals done, and was especially glad to get the brown area up by the dolphin mostly done, since that area gave me some trouble last time.  I was able to get a lot of sections connected!

Ravensburger Underwater 2000 piece jigsaw puzzle