This article is about missing jigsaw puzzle pieces. I recently experienced doing an Advent puzzle that is 24 (days) packets of 5"x5" little images. I have only started the very first one and wouldn't you know it - I have an extra piece. Right off the hop, I have the most common and aggravating situation that is associated with this hobby. The 'Lost and Found puzzle pieces' scenario. So into my lost and found treasure box it goes along with the several others I've accumulated over the years.
Has this happened to you? How many puzzles have you assembled with missing pieces and how few have you gotten the extra pieces? Now we know, historically, this is the hazard of doing puzzles. It's the utmost drastic situation for a much loved puzzle or a 60K piece wall mural.
Over the years of being in jigsaw puzzle Social Media, I think it is fair to say that about 10% of jigsaw puzzles have some type of deficiency with either missing, damaged or extra pieces involved.
That's really not a bad average considering the amount of puzzle products that are out there. That does not include 'knock off puzzle companies' where the quality is quite low and damaged/missing/extra pieces are the norm. You may know that some puzzle companies offer replacement puzzles and or a new image puzzle. Rarely does a company offer just the missing/damaged piece.
But just so you know, when it came to the Advent puzzle above, I immediately posted it out with my first Advent Day 1, that I had an extra piece and if someone was missing their piece, then I would happily mail it to that Puzzler no matter where they lived. Turns out the missing piece in this case belonged to Day 23 BUT it was not missing there either so I definitely have an extra piece.
So I have to wonder.....what would it take to provide a lost and found service for jigsaw puzzle pieces. I know, it sounds ludicrous but think about this:
IF you KNEW there was such a service or 'puzzle piece bank' or ''data" listing, wouldn't you go online and check it first? Or maybe you might try that after you checked back with the company you purchased the puzzle from.
Let's look at a few scenarios where/how this might work.
His response has given me clarity. Before questioning him, the whole thought process/idea was very muddy but he has helped put it into perspective. Not that I have a solution - yet!
Ok, so his answer triggers more clarification. He mentions: "not clear to me who could provide extra parts besides the manufacturers themselves".
The 'extra parts' in this case is the missing pieces themselves. So if I were to say, "IF you were missing a piece in your puzzle AND you knew there was a website/app to go to see if someone had that missing piece and/or that puzzle which was already missing pieces so they may be able to have your missing piece- would you check there first?"
Chances are pretty good the answer would be yes. I brought this idea to the jigsaw puzzle Facebook Groups to see what kind of response they would have. Here are some of what was commented:
"Sounds like an opportunity to create a new FB group."
"Yes… Someone could have a nice little business if they could figure out how to replicate missing pieces"
"The odds of finding one piece out of millions of pieces is astronomical."
"I think about this sometimes. I feel like the chances do a successful connection would be so slim, but that would make it very exciting when it happened."
"I'd support development of that app!"
"I think that would be a great idea I need it and I need it right now so hopefully they can get it done fast I just finished up a puzzle and I’m missing one piece and I need it to complete the puzzle"
"I wish there was an app or website where you could pull up the cut pattern of the puzzle you are working on for instances where your really stuck"
Well, I don't think I am much further than when I started other than understanding what issues would be involved. Besides the 4 issues listed above, I guess the real issue is the million dollar questions - is there enough demand? I have to wonder IF someone had started this platform idea when the internet started to become 'common' about 20 years ago would there be plenty of missing/lost/found/extra pieces listed on it by now.
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