December 14, 2010

Cast Bike

After my visit to Eureka, I went to grab some lunch. While I was waiting, I decided to start working on Cast Bike. I chose that one because I figured it would be somewhat easier that Cast Plate and Cast Ring II.

I thought that it would be easy because it is a level 1 out of 6 and from seeing pictures I knew the general idea of what I needed to do: there is a ring with a small gap in it that must be navigated to an exit point. The gap is thinner than the thickness of the bike, but there are channels on both side that allow it to move.

This puzzle was originally designed and patented by John R. Lynn back in 1898, but this replica was created by Nob Yoshigahara. Nob mentions in the description that they did not have a puzzle for reference, which made this a difficult task.

As with all of the Hanayama Cast puzzles, it is nicely made. This one is a bit flat, which makes it somewhat less appealing than some of the more interesting shapes. However, I think the fact that it is a bike draws people in, since it is a familiar object.

I think it took me a good five to ten minutes to solve this one, though I was eating pizza at the time. I think if I was just doing that it would have taken less than five minutes.

The solution is quite lengthy, with approximately 41 moves depending on how you count. However, there are not very many dead ends, and they tend to be pretty short. I had the most trouble in the wheels, there is an interesting trick that is used there that I didn't notice at first. I think most folks will be able to solve this one within ten minutes or so, it is the sort of thing that just takes a bit of time due to its length.

Overall, Cast Bike is another solid puzzle by Hanayama that I would recommend. Thanks to Puzzle Master for making this review possible!

3 comments:

  1. My son loved this puzzle (he was about 9 when I got it). He also likes the Cast Horse.

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  2. I haven't gotten Cast Horse yet, but I've tried the Tavern Puzzles version with a ring rather than a horseshoe.

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  3. Cast Horse or Handcuffs (the same puzzle goes by many names) is a great puzzle for kids around 10. After they figure it out they love to spring it on their buddies!

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