Double Clef . . . from Pentangle of England .
Another slightly different version called "Two Part Harmony" is sol by Livewire .
Finger puzzle rings
Clockwise from bottom left : 4-band chain, 11-band (Q series), 5-band, and 8-band . All rings come apart in a cluster except for the 8-band, whose bands can all be individually separated . The 11Q is the most difficult . These solid Sterling Silver rings were purchased from Jewelry by Jose Grant .
3 rings Clockwise from bottom left :
4-band wide bar, 6-band Filigree, and a 3-band wide bar smooth !
. . . from E-Bay member caravanimports of Canada .
There are only two pieces of brass wire : the handlebars and the rest of the tricycle -- which is one continuous length . Designed & crafted by A. J. Koveleski in 1976 . The directions sheet bears his handwritten signature in pen (1984), and a "Best Wishes to ...." phrase to the persons I bought it from .
Alexis' Spiral Dilemma
Is the secret to solving this gem lie with only looping a single spiral or two ? How does one make the transition from single to double loop ?
The beautifully highly-polished chromed spring is a whopping 6" long by 1 3/8" in diameter . The wire is 1/8" thick . The rugged gold ring is 2 1/2" in diameter with a wire thickness of 1/4" .
2 Triangles / U miniature
This is the first in a series of the next 5 miniature copies of the full-size Tavern Puzzles . Made in China by Out Of Bounds . Designed & distributed by Robmar Corp. of Manchester, NH .
Heart / Dogbone miniature
Also known as Uncle's Sweetheart and Puzzletts Heart .
Known elsewhere on the web as Uncle's Gingerbread Puzle and Conestoga Playmate .
The wire is from stainless steel clothes hanger . This is an extremely difficult puzzle if one didn't have a whisper of how to proceed .
Pentangle also has this puzzle in their Executive line, and they say that, "The object of this puzzle/paperweight (named after the knot of the legend of King Gordius) is to weave the cord from the tangled loops without resorting to the extreme measures of Alexander The Great with his sword!"
Elsewhere on the web - with slightly different form - this is referred to as "The Loony Loop" . Its packaging has on it ' It is Made in Japan " and has patent no. 172310 . The instructions say it is a product of the Loony Loop Company from Memphis, TN. Other names found on the web are Puzzletts Jailer and The Jailer made by Spilsbury Puzzle Co., #3181 and Siamese Angels ( . . . a double-looped version called Triamese Angels -- 26 moves ) .
A wooden version of this puzzle, devised by Jack Botermans in 1983, is called "Gekkenwerk" (the Dutch word for lunacy). Frik - n - Frak's Curio Shack sells a version called "Sapiens".
A simpler version of the Gordian Knot was the Reef Knot , which was part of the early 19th century Ivory Chinese Puzzle sets.
According to the seller (puzzler2) -- from Michigan, "You are bidding on a hardwood Looney Loop puzzler about 11 inches long by 3 inches wide, in fine condition and comes with its own display holder. Made by Btis & Pieces and in its original box, the puzzle comes with a solution."
Horseshoes . . . elongated miniature
This was acquired at a local yard sale .
The solution for this puzzle can be seen here
Three Clovers The solution is deceptive if one weren't paying attention .
Opposing Triangles Very clever !
Strange Loops One could go loopy trying to solve this one .
Handcuffs / Horseshoes This one is very tricky given its simplicity of design . Another name on the web is Puzzletts Shackles .
Hidden Mickey's Dilemma The three loops sort of look like Mickey Mouse's head outline .
Devil's Staircase . . . Pentangle's Devil's Halo .
Bits & Pieces also sells this puzzle by the same name , but my version's name was taken from a hardcover oversized book called 'Creative Puzzles of the World' , written by Pieter van Delft and Jack Botermans, and purchased from Harry N. Abrams, Inc. NY back in the 70s, way before Bits & Pieces decided to put theirs on the market . A wooden ring version is called Desparado . Also known as : Giant's Causeway - slightly different (utilizing a separate pillar with embedded ring).
Chinese Puzzle Rings . . . modern chrome version
SPIRAL -- FLEX handle .
Chinese Puzzle Rings . . . modern wood version
Handle has artwork at end .
Closeup of artwork .
This was purchased from a barn sale in New Boston, NH, whose items were acquired from abandoned estates . The square wrought iron stock that the general bulk of this puzzle is made up with is a whopping .241" (3.86/16") in thickness .
This is also known elsewhere on the web as Bit & Brace .
This puzzle is one of many 'tavern puzzles' originally made by Dennis Sucilsky, "a museum trained traditional blacksmith who is able to use his knowledge of iron-working and tool making for the production of these metal puzzles." "The earliest Tavern Puzzles® are based on designs centuries old. New styles are added on a regular basis; some of these are original designs, others are new versions of classics."
"Tavern Puzzles® evolved from reproductions of hand-forged artifacts that Dennis Sucilsky came across while researching architectural ironware."
One can view the full line of these great metal wonders here at www.tavernpuzzle.com .
Long Island Catch
An added level of difficulty is presented by the placement of the chain . There has to be a constantly correct orientation of the chain at all times, or else a false sequence of moves is unnecessarily blended into the solution .
click for larger pic
This one was purchased from one of my favorite online stores Frik - n - Frak
According to the instructions that came with it in its own box, this puzzle is a product of The Loony Loop Co. of Memphis, Tenn. It was made in Japan, and disributed by The Products of the Behavioral Sciences, Inc. of Campbell, Ca
I do not have a date to put with this one, but a similar puzzle (whose only difference of appearance lies in the section of the puzzle where all 4 loops are connected to the center wire, and the ends) called the Gordian Knot is made by Pentangle of England, in their Eureka Puzzles > Wood, Wire and Loops 3 section .
I've made my own version from stainless steel clothes-hanger wire, as can be seen on the "My Creations" page, or above on this page .
C & U wire puzzle
. . . A very nice 'hefty' gift from my good friend -- and Connecticut's only seriously avid puzzle collector --
Rob Stegmann .
Here is what I call a simply, tricky puzzle : simple, once you know how it works. But tricky in its simplicity.
The 'key' maneuver is hidden in plain sight.
The wire is a whopping 1/4" thick. Set flat on a table surface (free of tension), it measures 5 + 7/8" long. Under tension, you could pull it another 3/8" (for a total of 6 + 1/4" in length)
For all of you who get easily frustrated, you can view the solution here