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Puzzle crafting & workshops • Laboratorio di giochi d'ingegno • Atelier de puzzles
by Gianni A. Sarcone & Marie-Jo Waeber
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Paradoxopiped puzzle
Creator/designer: Gianni A. Sarcone

In this page a typical packing problem is presented. A set of blocks completely fills a given space, but nevertheless, an extra piece can be added!



Let's Start

To make this 3D "magical" puzzle, you will need a 1.6 cm thick piece of wood with a sidelength of approx. 14 cm and a width of approx. 8 cm. Figure 1 shows how to cut the wood into 9+1 pieces. Be aware that you will need to realise the given dimensions as accurately as possible. 

Use another piece of wood to make the frame shown in Figure 2. Concentrate on accurately reproducing the inner dimensions. Now assemble the first nine pieces in the frame using the configuration in Figure 3.

paradoxopiped3 paradoxopiped2
© Gianni A. Sarcone
Source: Cubism for Fun, #52, June 2000, page 15
You cannot reproduce this puzzle for commercial use!


geometrexWith the tenth piece placed next to the frame your puzzle is in its starting position: rearrange the nine pieces in the frame in such a way that the tenth piece can be added. More than 3 solutions can be found. Magic? No... Mathematical!
You can purchase the Paradoxopiped puzzle online at:
Rex Games Inc (Geometrex 3D - Price: $15.00 - Age: 10+)

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Archimedes journal ARCHIMEDES journal is an interactive review devoted to entertaining & involving the readers with puzzles, recreational mathematics and visual creativity. This journal is published for an audience without a specific math background. Each issue covers a broad range of mental and hands-on activities for the reader to enjoy! Workshop image "How to focus attention? Encourage creative exploration?" Multicultural interactive puzzle activities & workshops for museums and institutions.
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