Now I know that Wil is not one to fleece us, over the years he has shown me that he deals very fairly with me and with others and I will always take him at his word. Puzzlers are a trusting bunch (except when it comes to solutions) and that trust is earned through years of treating people well. So after my initial gulp and sly look at Mrs S to make sure that she had not seen my gasp, I sent off the email placing my order - the decision must have taken me at least 60 seconds! After all I am Wil's official troubleshooter so I need to have a copy of all his significant puzzles to allow me to troubleshoot. I reckon I must get 1-5 emails a week asking for information or help and without playing with them I couldn't provide that help.
|Streetwise Puzzles Inc.|
|General Manager||: Iwahiro|
|Product Manager||: Tom|
|Approbation Manager||: Louis|
|Trouble Shooter||: Kevin|
|Logarithmic Analyser||: Goetz/Nick|
|Jointly Responsible||: William|
That is my justification to Mrs S and I am sticking with it. Whack! Ouch! I'm glad you're so understanding dear!
|2 Strijbos boxes|
I put it in my bag for the following day and got an almighty shock in the morning when I picked up the bag - I have to say that I might be carrying too many puzzles! I could barely lift the bag and it really hurt my shoulders and back. I was forced to take it out in a hurry and resolved to play when I finished work that day. Tuesday dragged on and on and yet again I got home late! Damn! The world is conspiring against me. Finally, however, I had a bit of time to play that evening.
Wil's email (and a follow up) gave these instructions:
First - Free the First Coin, while the box is still closed...
Second - Open the box...
Third - Free the Second Coin
Instructions: Please don't use any force! Just turn things over, slide things back and forth carefully, change positions etc. No "external tools" are required. Always play over a clean table (there's a good reason!). No Banging, No Rotational Moves, and No Force Required at all! (I mean it!)Initial examination revealed:
|2 doors firmly locked shut|
On Wednesday I had emptied my bag and took the Pachinko box in to work with me. I was in the angio suite and I sweet-talked the radiographers into taking a few Xrays of my new toy. Of course, I have to say that I have never managed to use these Xrays to help me solve a puzzle but they look fantastic. I have published them here behind a show/hide button - if you don't want even a hint of a clue then don't press that button!!!
That evening after work - I was a bit jaded after yet another long day. I had a long meeting scheduled for 8:00pm and would have only an hour to investigate before it was time to go. The whole world is conspiring against me! During that quick hour, I was able to discover a way to control the ball - I could move it back and forth between compartments at will and lock it in place. Now I needed to find the next step. I am not very bright and it took me most of Thursday afternoon to work out what I had to do. Even with that nicely bevelled slot, I couldn't quite see enough to do it and I spent a very frustrated hour or so before my dexterity was up to it and suddenly I had the first challenge solved and a 2 Rouble coin fell out. The rest of the evening was spent trying to use Allard's copyrighted method.....Think© but my feeble brain was not up to it!
Friday afternoon is my time for admin - I catch up on emails and phone calls and do all my paperwork. So it is paperwork or puzzling - I'll let you have one guess what I did? I had been emailing back and forth with Shane and Goetz about the puzzle (no hints I promise) and with some encouragement I had a brainwave and I had opened the box. My goodness! Quite some engineering has gone into the design and manufacture of this puzzle! However, there was still no sign of the second coin!
I had only opened one of the two doors and the other was still locked firmly shut. More emails and more effing and blinding in my office and another brainwave! The second door opened a little fraction and the other coin was visible right at the bottom of a deep dark compartment and it would not move at all. I couldn't reach it with my fingers either. This Strijbos chap can be downright mean!! He gives tiny hints and just won't let you get what you want straight away! More thought was required - more tools too but where were they? At this point Shane encouraged me to really examine the puzzle and think© about why certain features are present. So I thunk and I wondered and I had an idea.....but I couldn't do it. In fact I had closed the second door by accident and couldn't open it again! Damn this is a good puzzle!
I did some paperwork and thunk some more before having an idea based on a new discovery. I could feel something but not see it and couldn't work out how to manipulate it at first but got there after another ½ hour. There is a truly wonderful sequence of discoveries at the end (classic Wil) and eventually the 3 challenges are complete - Damn this is a GREAT puzzle!
|Box was open and 2 coins released - a magnificent journey and worth the breathtaking cost and the wait!|
So now what? I am sure that Wil has more up his sleeves for us in the future. My Strijbos metal purchases are now quite extensive - in the picture below are some puzzles that aren't his design but were facilitated by him. Even Mrs S thinks it is a particularly exceptional display!
|How much Strijbos metal does a puzzler need? More, more MORE!|