|Turn the Plug|
But in the interim I received something from Shane which I just could not resist! This is the Turn the Plug puzzle and is one of what he calls his interval puzzles i.e. they fill the gap between his major creations and in his words are not intended to be taken seriously and are just a bit of fun. I had heard about this one a while ago but never actually seen one in the flesh/wood before. It's a pretty hefty thing and for "just a bit of fun" it is beautifully finished. Apparently Shane has been chatting to a number of master craftsmen recently and been gaining knowledge about how to finish wooden puzzles. This particular puzzle has his old method and is stunning - Lord knows how beautiful things will be when he tries a new improved method! I am sure that Mrs S will not want this particular puzzle on show because of it's rather unusual hardware but it will HAVE to go on the sideboard in the dining room along with my now embarrassingly extensive Hales collection.
|The rear view showing the plug to be turned|
|That seems rather robust|
Each evening whilst Mrs S has been away and enjoying herself, I have spent a lonely (albeit laser stare free) time playing with a few puzzles including some jingly ones but mostly exploring this. After 3 evenings of getting absolutely nowhere, I made a discovery by accident - actually the cat made the discovery - he's much brighter than I am! After finding that very well hidden discovery (no, I'm not going to tell you what it is), I thought I had everything I needed to simply "turn the plug" but no. Shane has done more than hide things! The little bugger has tampered with things so they don't work properly! How does he do that? How does he do it without leaving any marks?
It took me another hour to discover what I needed to do and I think I only worked it out because I had solved the Hales lock 1 as well as one of his other lock designs. Giving this to a beginner might be a very frustrating thing - hmmm, now there's a thought.
|Awesome! The key is still in place (or maybe it's just back there for the pic)|
Before I carry on with the chores that "she who is frightfully violent if I forget" set me, I just want to tell you about one of the jingly things that I had been working on whilst she had been away. A very dear friend of mine had advised me that another of Lambert Bright's puzzles should also be in my collection and when it came up in the last Haubrich auction, I snapped it up - I was forced to bid a bit higher than I wanted to but still got it. I always find that if I pay too much then I end up a little peeved with the puzzle for a while so I just put it aside and only recently got around to playing with it.
|Shoot the moon|
The Shoot the moon puzzle comes beautifully packaged with a very nice story on the card it is packaged with. Setting aside the story the aim is to remove the 2 coins that are rather tightly bound to the two crossed arrows. The coins can be moved freely around the puzzle in the hope to get them to somewhere where they come off but due to the rather small ring of string holding them together, there is very little that can be done to separate them. After about 10 minutes of fiddling and jingling (free from the laser burning stare) I had a new idea and had a go. There is literally only just enough string to carry out the required move and everything must be absolutely perfectly positioned for it to work but I soon had this:
|It is a thing of beauty|
Have a look at my New additions page to see some puzzles that arrived earlier this week - they are something that I have very little experience with so I went to the master for some to start me off.