I have a board with some matches on it, in the shape of a number.
By adding one match, you make a larger number appear than before.
By adding a second match, you make it smaller.
By adding a third match, you make it bigger again.
And with a fourth match, you get something the same as I started with. What is the largest amount of matches I could have started with? Prove your concept and how to add the extra matches.
Once a match is placed, it is stuck on the board in that position. The starting configuration may be determined by you as necessary to complete the puzzle.
Matches must be in identifiably different positions. Overlaid matches will not count.
"Smaller" means magnitude. -1 is the same size as +1. -3 is larger than +2.
The board does not allow matches to pass through it.
All matches must be undamaged.
Numerals must be Arabic, seven-segment, or Roman. Votes will serve as judgement of what is close enough to recognise as a number.