What's New

Site updates, and puzzles I have recently ordered or received...

March 2007

I have re-vamped my links page and created a sorted list of over 200 Puzzle Vendors Around the World.

From Mr. Puzzle Australia, Make Room, Decemburr, and Coming of Age Mk II:

Three unusual burrs from Davans:

A Japanese booklet on "Mekanikaru Puzzle" by Kodansha, from Yamanaka Kumiki Works:

A trick lock engraved "MIORE" 

Three puzzles from Viktor Genel:

Several secret-opening puzzles from the Karakuri Club:

Two Japanese secret-opening boxes, made by Hiroyuki Oka, from The Unique Box Shop:

Three puzzles from James Dalgety:

Several puzzles from Scott T. Peterson:

Scott T. Peterson is a talented craftsman from the state of Washington, who produces high-quality limited editions of puzzles in fine woods. He and I have been corresponding, and Scott will be making a few instances of my 2 N's Cube design. Scott has devised an attractive coloring scheme for the cube and made me the examples shown below - the first in Bocote and Yellowheart, and the second in Kingwood and Holly.

I would rate the 2 N's Cube of medium difficulty - it shouldn't take long for an experienced metagrobologist to solve it, but I think it presents a good challenge for the casual puzzler, particularly if one starts with it disassembled and hasn't seen the assembled arrangement. The design is the product of a search "by hand" (i.e. without a computer) for a selection of non-planar pieces formed from two n-tetrominoes each that would allow interlocking assembly into a 4x4x4 cube. My "theme" was the frequent mis-spelling of my last name, which has two n's. I was pleased to discover an arrangement that used four pairs of pieces - thusly again doubling the double-n theme - and yet assembled in a way that was not completely symmetric.

Scott's tolerances are so accurate that when I first received the cubes, I had trouble finding the disassembling moves! Naturally, wood tolerances vary with humidity, but Scott's pieces are very nicely made.

February 2007

Made a weekend trip to Boston and visited both The Games People Play shop in Cambridge, and David Leschinsky's wonderful shop Eureka! in Brookline, Mass. Eureka has a fantastic selection of mechanical puzzles and is well worth a visit if you are in the Boston area. It is not far from downtown, out Beacon St. to the intersection with Harvard St. Eureka has a friendly, enthusiastic, and knowledgable staff who are willing to take the time to demonstrate puzzles, and help parents find suitable items for kids. Eureka also has a great hands-on attitude and provides open copies of many puzzles so you can try them out in the store. Here's what I found there:

The Games People Play had new Rubik's items, and also a stock of the KO Labyrinth in case you're looking for it - here is what I got there:

Trick Locks from wiredforfun:

The Tetris Cube, Tetris Ball, and Tetris Ball Twins, from Meffert's. These are actually made by IdeaOcean, where they're called the Idea Cube and Magic 16.

From the New York Puzzle Party:

January 2007 - Happy New Year!

A Split Star by Mark McCallum: 

Three WWII 1942 Slidem-Solitaire Puzzles: 


December 2006

Four of the eight Karakuri Club 2006 Christmas Gifts:

Other Christmas gifts:

> > > > > I have added new pages on Tangrams and Anchor Stone Puzzles, and Logic Puzzles. < < < < <

A beautiful Apple Puzzle from woodturner John Berkeley arrived for Christmas: 

The Apple won an Honorable Mention in the IPP21 Design Competition.

John has graciously agreed to provide a 10% discount to all IPP members! Tell him Rob sent you.

Some puzzles on their way from Hendrik Haak's Puzzle Shop:

An unexpected and wonderful Christmas present from Rocky Chiaro: one of four of his original plexiglass and brass Perplexity puzzles.

The book Amusements in Mathematics by the noted British Puzzler Henry Ernest Dudeney is available online to read or for free download at web-books.com, and at Project Gutenberg.

Many fascinating topics of potential interest to the mechanical puzzle afficionado, including:

November 2006

 (See patent 5351957 - Scott 1994) - "correct placement ... is determined from information available only in the sum of all the correctly assembled [clusters]"

Cubed Burr II by Tom Jolly, in English Brown Oak: 

October 2006

Many updates to my Links Page.

Ten puzzles including several from Binary Arts: IZZI 2, two versions of SOMA, Color Cubes, Hoppers, Leapin' Lizards, Stormy Seas, Railroad Rush Hour, Rush Hour, and DaMert's 1998 3D Squares Cars.

September 2006

August 2006

Several new books. I added contents for both Wyatt books so you can see what puzzles he covers.

I have added many of the puzzles I obtained at IPP26.

Jerry Slocum has donated a large part of his mechanical puzzle collection to the Lilly Library at Indiana University.

You can peruse Sam Loyd's Cyclopedia of 5000 Puzzles at two different sites online: one hosted by Ed Pegg, and another here.

I have revised my section on Sliding Piece Puzzles and split it out into a whole new page.

I have created a Stewart Coffin section on my Interlocking page, and added a few new Coffin puzzles.

I added a section on the Sequential Star puzzle by Lee Krasnow.

July 2006


Wow! What a great time! I found several interesting and rare puzzles, including another 4-color Dino Cube, a Brain Chek, a Logi-VIP Ball, Lotica, Turn'n'Push, Russian Gripple, and a Whirligig. I got a Sequential Star from Lee Krasnow (the baby brother to his Barcode Burr), a Stickman No. 11 Fulcrum Puzzle Box by Robert Yarger, a miniature version of Oskar's Moby Maze 3D-printed in plastic by George Miller, and a few Stewart Coffin originals including a Prism Cell and a Pennyhedron.

June 2006

An Orbik:     The Horse tanglement, by Binary Arts, from 1985: 

Puzzlemaster's Mosquito:     Found another Tantrix The Rock: 

An Enzo Mari Animali: 

Two books - Crafting Wood Logic Puzzles by Self and Lensch, and Puzzles in Wood by Wyatt 1939: 

May 2006

Added a new section on Paper and Card Picture Puzzles. Lots of links, including explanations to the classic vanish.

Also added a smaller section on Matchstick Puzzles.

Springbok Pentominoes and Sweep:   

I have split out a separate page devoted to various types of Jigsaw Puzzle.

April 2006

Added a new sub-section on Dissected Dice.

Some specific items from the lot of 31:

A puzzle compendium called "Mixed Up"    A vintage French puzzle called "13" 

LiveWire's Virus, Arrow, and Pyramid Scheme: 

From a visit to Time Machine Hobby:

Three Synergistics Wet Paint jigsaws: 

March 2006


February 2006

Visited The Games People Play - found a Color Magic from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Apothecary's Cabinet by Constantin, Flip Side by Thinkfun, Kinato Hex Pro (Warning: website requires Chinese character set), and the Herz Puzzle by Ingo Uhl, from Logika.

From Bits and Pieces:

Found several controversial Toysmith Magic Cubes at Cracker Barrel, of all places. They also had a good selection of puzzles by the Mandalay Box Company.

Other finds include an old Sputnik in its package, and a set of Nervous Breakdown puzzles:

New sections:
A Tony Fisher Mental Block - a custom build based on a full-size Skewb: 
Other acquisitions:

Several Reiss dexterity puzzles:

Trades and purchases from the 2006 New York Puzzle Party:

I found a Dino Cube! 

You can read a brief history of the jigsaw by Anne online. More here, with pix.

From Brett:

I am very pleased to own one of Kagen Schaefer's new Rune Box puzzles, number 7 of 30. It's made of Cocobolo, Maple, and Ebony. For more info, see Kagen's website. Kagen is also an honorary member of the Karakuri Creation Group.

January 2006 - Happy New Year!

I've added a lot more information on shunting puzzles, including some cool links to the U.S. Patent Office!

December 2005

Xmas gifts from Mom:

The Karakuri Club Christmas 2005 Gifts (4 of 8):

New items from Eric Fuller's Cubicdissection:

Robert Yarger's Stickman Box No. 9 "Snowflake":

Oskar's Matchboxes by Eric Fuller: 

Tamura's Divide Cube in Rosewood by Fuller: 

A Christmas order from Hendrick Haak, some puzzles in Aluminum by Roger:

I finally completely disassembled, photographed, and reassembled my Immaginario Lunare.
I wrote a new section on shunting puzzles.

A set of Mag-Nif Mighty Midget puzzles:

November 2005

I've finally split up the allother page - it had so many images, not all of them were loading before timeout. I've created a separate page for Dexterity Puzzles.

I have considerably enhanced my section on R. Journet dexterity puzzles.

I have added a lot of images to the Tanglements page - I may have to split up that page, too, soon...

I have added a condensed What's New page.

From the Karakuri Club, a Hermit Crab Box:   and a Karakuri Small Box No. 1: 
From Eric Fuller at Cubicdissection:

Some more Journet puzzles:

[I've truncated the rest of 2005.]