wooden version for a very reasonable $40, so I decided to pick one up.
I loved Eric's description of this puzzle:
I was showing various puzzles to an IPP attendee when they skipped right over this one. I started to show it to them and they said "Everything interesting that can be done with 4x4 cubes has already been done". I laughed and showed them about half of the solution, at which time they cried "Stop - I'll take it!". This really is a fabulously interesting cube, and Tom really hit the ball out of the park with it. It's just a downright fun puzzle that still puts a smile on my face to solve.Indeed, this really captures it perfectly: it is a remarkable design! In addition, Eric did an excellent job crafting it. The pieces fit together perfectly, and have a nice finish on them. It is made out of Carolina Mountain Ash and is 3 inches square. I really liked the way he constructed the pieces: it gives the puzzle a nice appearance on the outside when it is assembled.
Even though I had solved this one before with LiveCubes, it was a much better experience using actual wood since I didn't have to worry about the pieces coming apart. Not only is this a non-trivial puzzle to disassemble, I would say it is actually pretty tricky.
The first three pieces come out quite easily, but the remaining two pieces are trapped by a 4x4 'hoop' structure. Even knowing the solution, it still takes me a few minutes to remember how to do it. Also, check out Jonas's blog post on this one.
Putting it back together is even trickier. I brought it to a family event a few days ago and somebody was able to get it apart, but it took me about 15 minutes to get it back together again.
If you have a set of LiveCubes, head over to Puzzles Will Be Played to see what the pieces look like and give it a try. You won't be disappointed!