Wednesday 20 April 2011

Vinco's Matrioshka and Cube Vinco

Next amongst the puzzles received from Vinco is the Matrioshka.

This one also looks absolutely spectacular in multiple colours of wood with the outermost layer being a beautiful red wood. It is nicely polished. This puzzle is another coordinate motion puzzle but this time not just 4 pieces.

In fact this is 3 puzzles for the price of one!!

Opening the first layer is pretty straightforward, you just have to find the correct placement for your fingers and it just slides apart in one go.
Inside the first one it looks like.....

Another Matrioshka!!! This time it is made of a much lighter wood.

Smaller Matrioshka inside the bigger one!
The same move again opens the mini version to reveal.....

A Cube Vinco!

2 Matrioshka's open and a Cube vinco inside!
I also received one of these as a large stand-alone version. It is a lovely little cube - it is not polished like the rest of the puzzle and fits together so well that it is impossible to see where it might come apart.

Larger (stand-alone) version

I initially tried pulling it in multiple different directions using various different grip positions but could not budge it at all - all I could get was a very slight creaking noise! After this I tried compressing the cube from various directions when suddenly there was a small crack and I could suddenly see a join between two pieces. I wonder whether the puzzle had been put together before the varnish was completely dry. The gap gave me an idea of how to open it, I changed grip and pulled..... Nothing! In the end changing direction of my pull did it - what looks like the correct orientation is not actually right, very interesting.

I suddenly had 2 pieces which looked quite complex.

When I put them down they suddenly fell apart into 4 separate pieces (2 different mirror images of each other).

The mini version inside the Matrioshka did not have quite the same difficulty opening it but was still pretty difficult to find the correct grip. In the end you have 16 beautiful pieces!

3 for the price of 1 - a whole lot of pieces!

So having opened 3 puzzles it is now time to reassemble it all! The cube is pretty easy. The trick is to reverse what you did, you cannot assemble it like a jigsaw. It is only possible if you make 2 pairs of pieces which will slide together nice and tight. The inner and outer Matrioshka are assembled one after another and this is VERY DIFFICULT, having 6 pieces each means it needs more than 2 hands to get everything aligned correctly. After about an hour of swearing under my breath it was back together! Quite an enjoyable experience although not one I am in a hurry to repeat immediately!

There were only 2 of these in Vinco's recent batch and I am really glad I managed to nab one! It definitely makes a lovely ornament! If you get a chance, buy it without hesitation, like all the Vinco puzzles they are relatively cheap and he is great to deal with.

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