Thursday 24 March 2011

Vinco's dual tetrahedron

Today (at the same time that I ordered some new ones from the Vinco site) postie arrived with my previous order from Vaclav Obsevic.

I was aware of what to expect but was not really ready for the breathtaking craftsmanship that has gone into making these objects of beauty. Even if they weren't puzzles they would be worth owning just to be lovely wooden ornaments. I started with the Dual Tetrahedron 12

It is fairly large, approx 8cm along each axis, feels really good in the hands and is obviously pretty solid and weighs a decent amount. The finish is lovely - waxed to a shine to emphasise the different woods used. It is pretty obvious where it comes apart because the seams are easily visible (this would be my only criticism of the puzzle). Knowing where it comes apart is quite different from actually achieving it. I didn't want to use my fingernails in the seams for fear of breaking them or scratching the wood. So you end up awkwardly gripping and twisting in various directions and all of a sudden you find the right movement and suddenly it partially opens:

From here it is a little stiff but quickly comes apart into 4 rather complicated looking pieces which are all slightly different:

It took only a few minutes to reach the disassembled state and the thought is: "is that it?"

Well that is only the beginning - it is much much harder to put it back together again than to take it apart!

The individual pieces are pretty complex. It took me another 15 minutes to work out what went where and how to align everything to get it to slide together again. Even knowing exactly what to do it is really quite tough to physically hold everything correctly to get it to start to interlock before pushing it all together again.

Overall this is a very satisfying puzzle to own - my wife was disappointed that I solved it so quickly, put very few puzzles will take as long as the revomazes. I think that every collector should own a few Vinco puzzles - they are all well made and there are several different types that he makes. New ones are currently on his website. He is very responsive and a pleasure to deal with.

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