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Author Topic: Extreme high level board burrs
Donald Osselaer
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posted June 21, 2011 03:13 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hi there.

About 10 years ago I was 21 years old and I lived in a very remote village in the Sierra Nevada mountains in Spain.
I handcrafted some puzzles at that time and started with a book by Jerry Slocum.
I made all the puzzles by hand without electric tools since there was no electricity.
I made a website at that time about my collection http://www.angelfire.com/space/adelaar/puzzles
I also invented some as you can see on the site.
At one point I tried to really make something extremely complicated, but at the time I could not test my design due to the lack of a computer and special software.
After a few years I went travelling backpacking through Africa for a while and forgot all about my puzzles.
Then about a week ago ... I accidentally stumbled upon a neat program called "burrtools" and so I immediately dug up my old puzzle cookbook and started testing my designs.
Apparently they worked
I will post the designs here.


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Donald Osselaer
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posted June 21, 2011 03:31 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
The first one is a level 54 with 9 pieces

It's level 54.49 according to burrtools but in that program sometimes two pieces are moved as one piece in the disassembly although they do not connect. I Find this to be an error in the software since a human being will never move two pieces at the same time when they aren't pulling eachother. That is why I find it to be a level 54.54
It isn't unique, but by adding 3 colors and enforcing to use only one color per direction it becomes unique

Solution:

http://users.telenet.be/adelaar/Level54Solution.jpg

If somebody can make this that would be great.

[ August 18, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Donald Osselaer
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posted June 21, 2011 04:33 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
The second one is a level 220 with 12 pieces.

Burrtools calls it a 214.190 but again burrtools makes double and sometimes triple moves at once which a human wouldn't do ... therefore I call it a 220.196 which is the actual amount of human moves required.

Solution:

http://users.telenet.be/adelaar/Level220Solution.jpg

Making this in wood isn't going to be easy since the pieces will become too weak when made out of one single board.
If someone figures out a way to make this please let me know.

[ August 18, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Derek Bosch
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posted June 22, 2011 05:35 PM     Profile for Derek Bosch   Author's Homepage   Email Derek Bosch     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
laser cut board burrs work great. from MDF or acrylic, they are quite strong...

the main problem I can see with these high level board burrs is they usually are prone to very easy shortcuts with rotations.


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Donald Osselaer
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posted June 23, 2011 02:05 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I know.
I have made a couple of extreme high level burrs and they all fall apart after about half of the moves.
I have designed these at that time specifically to not have this problem, although one can never be sure until one has actually made the things in real life and disassembled it.

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Guillaume Largounez
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posted June 26, 2011 02:51 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I've got the 9 pieces of the first puzzle made with live cube.

I see in the next topic that there are 500 000 false assemblies. Have I got a chance to find the right one with logic, or should I try them one by one until I find the one that can be assembled ?


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Donald Osselaer
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posted June 27, 2011 04:39 AM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Yes I got lucky on this puzzle to get it to a unique solution.
It's got 95 billion theoretical assemblies.
Adding colors that was reduced to 56 million in theory.
Adding 2 voxels to the pieces 8 and 9 reduced that in reality to 479 thousand and I admit that the one unique solution was just plain luck

Can you post a picture of the pieces and puzzle please?

[ June 27, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Guillaume Largounez
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posted June 28, 2011 06:15 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hello Donald,
Here is a picture of the pieces.

A black one broke. It is easy to fix, however, moving the pieces without breaking them is very difficult.

On top of that, we still don't know if the puzzle is within human reach in the assembling direction or even in the disassembling direction.
For example, Frank Worell's Top Ten is inhuman to disassemble).

Therefore I think I'll stop there. It's too much work.

I saw that our friend Stéphane made your big puzzle in wood. I would like to try to disassemble it, if I get the chance... and if it's not too fragile to play with.


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Guillaume Largounez
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posted July 20, 2011 04:24 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hello Donald,
I have just played with a model of the Xenon (level 54) made by Maurice.

I didn't find the "official" solution. I think that I've been in the position after move 39. I completely missed move 43.

I nonetheless disassembled it completely thanks to 3 rotations. The first one takes place after 40 or 50 moves and allows to free the same piece as the normal solution without having to find and perform move 43.

The second one frees the third piece to get out in the normal solution. I have not yet performed the normal solution, but looking at it in Burrtools, this rotation seems to skip a lot of complicated moves.

The third one is near the end and is not important.

I'll try to count the level with the rotations the next time I'll disassemble it.

I found the disassembling challenge very enjoyable. The moves combine themselves just the way I like.

I didn't try to reassemble it by myself. Finding the same solution is probably very difficult, but it may be possible to find a simpler solution, with rotations, among the 500 000 other possible assemblies.

Thank you very much for having published this design, and thanks to Maurice Vigouroux for the making of the puzzle.


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Guillaume Largounez
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posted July 22, 2011 06:53 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I have counted the moves of my solution, using Burrtools for some intermediate sequences without rotations.

The level originally given by Burrtools is
54 + 49 + 8 + 2 + 4 + 6 + 7 + 2 = 132

My solution is
42 + 12 + 6 + 3 + 4 + 8 + 8 + 2 = 85

It includes one illegal rotation (impossible if the puzzle was made of metal cut to the exact dimentions), another illegal rotation coordinated with a normal move (that I counted as one move), and a legit rotation.

I had to look closely to see that the two first rotations were actually illegal. I don't think that it is possible to make a puzzle out of wood where these rotations would be physically impossible.
They might even be possible if the puzzle was cut to the exact dimentions, thanks to the flexibility of the wood.


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Guillaume Largounez
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posted July 23, 2011 04:13 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I found a fourth rotation (a true one) near the end of the disassembling. The level is now

42 + 12 + 6 + 3 + 4 + 8 + 5 + 2 = 82


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Donald Osselaer
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posted July 25, 2011 05:03 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Nice going
Glad you like it.
42 is still good enough for me ... it is after all the meaning of life, the universe and everything.
I'm at the moment trying to imagine an even more complex 9 piece board burr in the same fashion but it's very difficult and I'll have to get into it again.

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Steve Strickland
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posted July 29, 2011 08:44 AM     Profile for Steve Strickland   Author's Homepage   Email Steve Strickland     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
When making puzzles of this type square edges will snag so we must chamfer the edges a bit to allow the edges to slide past each other. This creates a little extra room for rotations to occur.

Illegal rotations are tough to deal with. The tolerances in the puzzle must be tight but not so tight the pieces cannot be moved with some ease. Wood selection and the finishing techniques can help a great deal here to reduce the wood changing size due to environmental factors.

Larger puzzles will have less tendency to illegally rotate than smaller puzzles because the error envelope (typically 0.003") is a smaller percentage of the unit cube size.

Are rotations bad? Rotations might be exploited by deliberate design so that they are required to solve the puzzle.

In the Q-Cube Project we wrote an algorithm in the software that checked for the positions of opposing faces which we termed "grip related". While this was not done to detect rotations (we were measuring the coefficients of friction) it seems to me that something similar might be used to detect rotations when the opposing faces exceed some threshhold.

We were able to sort our Q-Cube solutions so that ones with the highest frictions were more desirable.

I think that with careful wood selection, careful size selection, very tight tolerance envelope, use of concealed steel dowels for rigidity and joint strength, and a 2 stage finishing technique to prevent moisture migration would result in the best possible wood puzzles.

--------------------

Steve Strickland
Steves Puzzle Shop.com
512-923-7298


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 04, 2011 03:36 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Maurice Vigouroux, in his kindness, has actually sent me both puzzles and I received them today.
They are truly the summit of woodworking and beautifully made using three different colors of wood.
The pieces are made of long bits of hardwood perfectly glued together so that the pieces are very solid.
The sides are meticulously chamfered so that the result feels very smooth and is quite easy to handle.
I love 'em

I played around with the Xenon a bit and it works like a charm.
It is very solid like I expected and I was able to get the first piece out after 5 to ten minutes or so.
As Guillaume pointed out the first piece can be removed with a twisty move on move 43 so the actual level is 43 then.
When designing the puzzle I aimed for that piece to be liberated by that time and the rest was luck anyway, so I am definately not dissappointed by this.
If anyone would be interested in this puzzle you can contact Maurice by email: mauricevigouroux@aol.com


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 04, 2011 03:58 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hi Steve.
What you say about rotations and them not being easy to incorporate in or rule out of designs is true.
This is exactly the reason why I chose a seperated board burr as the basis for my design because it isn't very prone to rotations, at least not as long as one keeps some pieces within some limits.
I'm pretty sure that there aren't any possible rotations before move 43 and this is exactly how I designed this puzzle.
Pieces 4 to 6 act as the "locks" of this particular puzzle and so the design was meant to move all three of them away so that piece 1 would come loose.
Once I had achieved that my head couldn't grasp the rest anymore.
Then later, with the help of the computer, it was determined that the piece could indeed be removed.
All the moves above 43 were just lucky, but now it turns out that a human can twist it out there, although it still is quite a difficult twist to figure out.

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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 07, 2011 11:45 AM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Guillaume, on the Xenon, how do you get the second piece out in 12 moves?
I've been toying around with it for a while but haven't found that shortcut yet.

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Steve Strickland
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posted August 08, 2011 01:22 AM     Profile for Steve Strickland   Author's Homepage   Email Steve Strickland     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Beautiful woodworking!

I see you used splines. This is what I did on my 6 board burrs designed by Bill Cutler and Frans de Vreugd. It allowed me to make a single piece out of 2 woods and also made the pieces notchable for ease of fabrication. Worked like a charm.

What I have in mind for these larger board burrs is a concealed dowel like I use to make Coffin's 3 Piece Block Puzzle and all of Don Charnley's Q-Cube designs. Steel dowel pins are available in most common lengths and all you need is a cutoff wheel on a bench grinder for custom sizes. These would add maximum rigidity to all the pieces and would be completely invisible. I'd like to try making some if I can get permission.

I think it's a wonderful design.

--------------------

Steve Strickland
Steves Puzzle Shop.com
512-923-7298


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Guillaume Largounez
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posted August 08, 2011 04:14 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Donald Osselaer:
Guillaume, on the Xenon, how do you get the second piece out in 12 moves?
I've been toying around with it for a while but haven't found that shortcut yet.

Hello Donald. Here are the pictures. After move 43, the puzzle should be in this configuration, given that Maurice used the same colors for both of us.
http://3141592.pio2001.online.fr/pictures/casse-tete/20110808-Xenon/IMG_0997.jpg

From that position, you should be able to reach this one is 9 moves :
http://3141592.pio2001.online.fr/pictures/casse-tete/20110808-Xenon/IMG_1000.jpg

Here is the tenth move :
http://3141592.pio2001.online.fr/pictures/casse-tete/20110808-Xenon/IMG_1002.jpg

The eleventh move is a rotation coordinated with a translation of the middle white piece :
http://3141592.pio2001.online.fr/pictures/casse-tete/20110808-Xenon/IMG_1003.jpg

You must free the top right corner since the beginning : this is the illegal part.
Carefully rotate the small black notch around the orange bar. If done properly, the piece can rotate freely.

Here is the end position :
http://3141592.pio2001.online.fr/pictures/casse-tete/20110808-Xenon/IMG_1004.jpg

After the 12th move :
http://3141592.pio2001.online.fr/pictures/casse-tete/20110808-Xenon/IMG_1005.jpg


As you can see in the background, I have got you Ultraburr in walnut, cherry and sycamore
I'm getting a very enjoyable experience with it. It extends the basic principle of the Xenon, with a fair amount of wrong tracks in which I lost myself.

I've got three pieces out for the time being. The first one thanks to a rotation, but I had to make a lot of moves before that.


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 09, 2011 04:39 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Finally having these puzzles in my hands after ten years is wonderful and I want to thank Maurice again for his altruïstic kindness of making these puzzles for me.

Toying around with them has sparked my imagination again and I started thinking about an even better design based on the same concept and principles.
It got to the point where I was constantly thinking and envisioning new ideas even while working, eating or driving my car.

Tonight, I finally did it.
Using burrtools to finalize my design I have now created a level 100
I'm too tired now to test or augment the design to be unique or to check for obvious rotational errors so I'll let it rest for now and work on it some more tomorrow.


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 10, 2011 02:39 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Upgraded it to 102 for a 9 piece burr
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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 10, 2011 02:51 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Thanks for the explanation and the pictures, Guillaume.
That is a very hard rotation to find and nicely found indeed.
To be honest I don't care much about what happens after the first piece is out as it is the nature of these things to start falling apart by then.
I have in the past, now ten years ago, made 2 extreme puzzles being "level 64 eagle" and "level 98 boxed", both by Dic Sonneveld.
They seemed great on the computer simulation but after making them I was greatly dissappointed by them because both fell apart after less than half of the theoretical moves and both had really weird and unlogic moves too so there was no fun in the process.
This is exactly the reason why I am happy with "xenon" being "only" 43 moves out of a theorethical 54 ... not only is 43 more than 3/4 of the intended moves but more importantly they are human designed moves and so they are logic and fun to search for in my opinion.
The new level 100+ I'm inventing now also has very logic human designed moves, although sometimes quite a bit more complex

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Guillaume Largounez
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posted August 13, 2011 01:12 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I completely agree with you about the distinction between "weird" and "human designed" moves.
And I am very glad to see high level burrs made with such logic.

I have finally disassembled the Ultraburr. I think that I must have performed much less than 610 moves. The first piece came out thanks to the same rotation as in the Xenon.

I don't know yet the level of the solution that I performed. I am first going to try to rebuild it without the solution.
I still have in memory the order in which the pieces must be inserted. The dowels are a great help to keep track of it.


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Guillaume Largounez
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posted August 13, 2011 03:41 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Done !

Now, that's a really cool puzzle !

However, the manufacturing has to be top notch for the moves to be performed smoothly.


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Guillaume Largounez
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posted August 14, 2011 11:10 AM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I've counted the moves of my solution for the Ultraburr. It involves 3 rotations and is level

115.6.23.25.14.5.4.3.5

Total 200 moves

Can you do better ?


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 14, 2011 04:55 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Nice one
Glad you like it.
My new 12 piece board burr I am working on is theorethically level 246 for the time being ... I'm still trying to upgrade it but it's very tricky.
Every time I think of some way to make it work better other problems arrise that make it impossible or too easy.
I have time though ... it'll be a long time before computers can calculate all the possible pieces and their solutions of 9 or even 12 piece seperated board burrs

My 9 piece seems to have come to an end now at 102 moves which is more than I had hoped for ... I'm still thinking about getting it unique with colors but sadly it's not as simple to do as with the Xenon.

[ August 14, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]

[ August 14, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 14, 2011 05:38 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I am at this very moment buzzing with adrenaline and the hairs on my arms are standing up straight.
Just a few seconds ago, after minutes of calculating, burrtools came up with level 349 for my new 12 piece!
I will now try to calm down a bit and then look at it to see if burrtools uses my intended way of solving it.

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Goetz Schwandtner
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posted August 15, 2011 03:05 PM     Profile for Goetz Schwandtner   Author's Homepage   Email Goetz Schwandtner     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
... level 349 for my new 12 piece!

That sounds like a tough puzzle! Congratulations!

I wonder how the pieces look like and how the solution and the possible moves and maybe dead ends are.

--------------------

Goetz

puzzles.schwandtner.info


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 15, 2011 05:40 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I managed to upgrade it to 384 now.
I get to about 330 with my intended moves and after that it becomes a blurry and unlogic mess, which I don't like.
I'm still trying to get it to have a nice and logic way to get a piece out but it's not simple to do.
I'll post the design when it's done

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Guillaume Largounez
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posted August 15, 2011 08:09 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Your efforts to keep the solution clear and logic are appreciated ! A rare quality in high level burrs.

For example, I found David Rousseau's Pause (level 22.30.12.6.3.2) harder to disassemble than the Ultraburr !
Mind that this might be a subjective matter. Maybe someone else would find the Pause easier than the Ultraburr...

The ultimate burr puzzle would also feature a smart assembling challenge.
The utraburr *may* be assembled without informations, given that the positions and colours of the dowels leave only two possible configurations.

But I am not sure about it. A traditionnal 18 pieces burr can often be assembled without help, if the exact configuration is found first, but for that purpose, we need to assemble most of the pieces, and work out the disassembling sequence while the last pieces are still missing.
In burrs with separated boards, it might be more difficult to start assembling some pieces. When I rebuilded the Ultraburr, I was remembering exactly the order in which the pieces had to go.

[ August 15, 2011: Message edited by: Guillaume Largounez ]


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Goetz Schwandtner
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posted August 16, 2011 04:19 PM     Profile for Goetz Schwandtner   Author's Homepage   Email Goetz Schwandtner     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
For example, I found David Rousseau's Pause (level 22.30.12.6.3.2) harder to disassemble than the Ultraburr !

Thanks for encouraging me! Since IPP the "Pause" is one of the puzzles still sitting on the sideboard waiting to be solved, but I am lacking time at the moment. I just wondered how many different movements seem possible even in the first few steps after playing with it a bit.

But that makes it all the way more challenging and after solving it I may feel happy to have solved a challenge. (without burr-tools!?)

Regarding your comment about clean and more systematic solutions, I completely agree. For example I find the higher level 152 "Burrly Sane for Extreme Puzzlers" simpler to solve and the soltion simpler to remember than for the level 138 "Burrly Sane for Woodworkers", which has some nice lateral movements, but seems a bit more chaotic to me. Overall the puzzles are quite similar -- being members of the same family. But that's just my 2c and other people may experience their difficulty exactly the other way round.

--------------------

Goetz

puzzles.schwandtner.info


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 18, 2011 04:54 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Here it is:

It isn't unique but it becomes unique by adding three colors like with the Xenon and then adding dots to the middle of the middle piece on each side.
Using those colors it has exactly 65536 assemblies ... a number which may seem like just a number but is known to programmers because it is 2 to the power of 16 or 256 squared.

Have fun

[ August 18, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 21, 2011 11:34 AM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Last night I came up with a new version of the ultraburr of level 252.234 of which all the 252 moves of the solution were intended and thus logical and sequential
I'm running an analysis using three colors as I type this and it just might be unique as well.
Right now the count is at 11% with 262 million assemblies with only one solution
It'll have to run for another 2 days though ... fingers crossed.

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Donald Osselaer
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posted August 22, 2011 01:33 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
That 252 is already long history and the calculation ended.
I finally managed to make the puzzle be solvable in the way I intended it originally!
After about 290 moves a piece should come out with a twist, like in the ultraburr.
I'll try to make it as solid as possible and then I'll do some huge calculations to check whether or not I can get it to be unique.

A little taste:

I want to thank Andreas Rover for his lovely program burrtools, without which I could never have completed this design.


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Guillaume Largounez
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Member # 1726

posted September 10, 2011 07:36 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hello Donald,
What news about your last design ? Did you find the time to finish it ?

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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted September 12, 2011 02:43 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Not really.
I'm helping my wife's dad build his new roof these last few days and doing all kinds of other things like making a wooden staircase for my basement and making small speakers for in the rear of my car
There's no hurry.

Did anyone look at the Fermium yet?
I think that design is very promising


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted November 01, 2011 05:40 AM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I have designed a little brother as an addition to my family of burrs.
It is a very simple 6 piece separated board burr with very simple pieces and should be accessible even for relatively inexperienced puzzlers.
In fact, it is so simple that it might already have been found by someone else ... in that case please let me know and I shall remove it.

As the naming of my puzzles until now has been with atomic numbers this one of level 11 shall be called "Natrium":

It only uses 3 different pieces and as you can see they are very simple pieces.
Nonetheless it has a unique solution even with one color and it can prove to be a nice challenging puzzle for beginners in this puzzle family and so it is a perfect puzzle as a step up to the Xenon or Fermium.
The moves required are all very simple and logic.


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted November 25, 2011 05:15 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Maurice has made me a beautiful Fermium.
My whole family was happy with it, as you can see:

I managed to assemble it from scratch without using any help and it took me one and a half hour, even though as the designer of it I already knew the placement of the pieces and the way the puzzle works to free the first piece ... but assembling the other pieces proved quite a challenge still.
I am very glad ... in fact I am extatic ... that it works *completely* as intended!
This means that it uses 100 logic human moves to free the first piece, which comes out in the same rotating fashion as with the Xenon.
Again ... the woodworking is perfect ... and with this type of complex puzzle it must be or it won't work. Maurice used beechwood for the white pieces instead of figwood and I like this better since it has more grain and I'm a firm believer in woodgrain

For newcomers to this type of puzzles I do not advise to start with the Fermium.
Start with "Natrium", then move up to Frans De Vreugd's "Torture" ... once you know that one and can disassemble and assemble it without the solution you're probably ready for the Xenon and once you know your way around the Xenon you can try my new Fermium as the basic principles of the last two are not entirely but quite the same.


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted November 27, 2011 03:53 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I have been playing with my Fermium a bit these last couple of days and found it very enjoyable.
I have found that a few voxels can be added, which burrtools cannot comprehend because it forces the twistmove Guillaume found and with which humans will naturally solve this puzzle.

By adding these voxels the pieces also become slightly more solid and the level of the puzzle is hereby upgraded to 105 to 108 depending on how you count multiple lateral movements and complicated twisting.

I hereby propose this variation as the new Fermium, because I kind of like it that burrtools (or any other program for that matter) can not comprehend this design.
This enhances the concept of "human designed puzzle" since the computer does not even understand it


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted November 30, 2011 11:05 AM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I changed the pieces a little more and found a variation that is unique using three colors.
It requires the twist move at the end and so it doesn't show up in burrtools as having a solution.

Can anyone test this?
Obviously there might be some other solutions that require twists ... untill I know of one I shall assume that this version is unique ... good luck finding them


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Donald Osselaer
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posted December 16, 2011 05:12 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
It's gotten very quiet here ... did anyone make and play with these puzzles yet?
Steve ... how did the pin-system work out?

Meanwhile ... I have now concocted a level 500+!
It's a 13 piece burr in the same fashion.
It looks crazy big

[ December 16, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Goetz Schwandtner
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Member # 1787

posted December 17, 2011 03:50 PM     Profile for Goetz Schwandtner   Author's Homepage   Email Goetz Schwandtner     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hi Donald,

Just today I got myself a beautiful copy of your "Xenon" puzzle, crafted by Maurice Vigouroux (as seen in my gallery at Extremely Puzzling). So, now I have a real 3D model to play with and it is very nice -- both in design and craftmanship.

It's "only" the level 54 Xenon, but I thought that I might start "easy" with your puzzles. Well, I guess it will take some time until I have solved it. Nice puzzles with high levels keep stacking up to be solved lately.

My first impression is: Despite I have puzzles with much higher level like the Burrly Sane ones, the Xenon seems to offer more choices for the next move, making the solve harder. On the other hand, the Xenon offers much view at the details of the pieces, which limits guesswork about what moves are possible. Regarding your advise on how to start such puzzles: I don't know how to solve Frans's "Torture", but know the high level solution to the "Extreme Torture".

Nice to hear you attacking level 500, I'm interested to see some pictures. On my webpage there is a picture and an article about a nearly-level-5000 puzzle, but that's a completely different category.

Cheers, Goetz

--------------------

Goetz

puzzles.schwandtner.info


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted December 18, 2011 08:05 AM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
4802! Haha
it looks interesting but boring
The problem with puzzles is that you can simply take a piece of cardboard, cut a labyrinth in it of near endless (x) length and then place a piece in there and call it a puzzle of level x.
Same goes for "the tower of hanoi" or "loop rings" cord puzzles ... you can simply take 3 pegs and place 64 discs on it and call it a puzzle of level (2^64)-1 or you could take 64 looping rings and a cord and do the same. Those puzzles would take hundreds of bilions of years to solve ... in theory.

Glad to hear you're attacking the Xenon.
Be sure to try the Fermium ... I find the Fermium to have a "better" solution than the Xenon.

I'm in the process of finalizing my new 12 and 13 piece puzzles but checking if they are unique is not an option as the calculations take multiple years on my simple quadcore computer.

[ December 18, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted December 19, 2011 01:37 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Here's my new 12 piece burr.

It's based on the same principles as Fermium but with a few changes to restrain it.
Burrtools says it's level 347.320 ... in reality the first piece should come loose around move 333 ... hence the name.
It might just be unique by itself, but calculating that would take thousands of years, so I added 3 colors and little "3" signs to make it look cool and to make sure it's unique with 2.097.152 possible assemblies.
"Choronzon" is the deamon lord of chaos and hallucination ... trying to beat this puzzle you might just find out what that means

Have fun and if anyone makes this please post pictures.

[ December 19, 2011: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted December 19, 2011 03:23 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Here's my new 13 piece burr:

521 + 479 = 1000 ... hence the name.
This puzzle is based on Choronzon, which is based on Fermium and thus it uses human designed moves or at least until near the liberation of the first piece.
Because of the 13 pieces in this design it uses different sizes of pieces and thus it's easier to calculate all the possible assemblies. It's not unique by itself but becomes unique by adding a big "M" on the top like in the picture.
Notice how it has 521 moves for 13 pieces so it has more than 40 moves per piece!

I believe this will be my final puzzle when it comes to "hugeness".
Firstly because there is little point in making puzzles that no human would ever want to solve and secondly because the computers of today can hardly even grasp this hugeness.
Finding the solutions for Millennium or Choronzon or similar designs takes between 5 and 15 minutes in burrtools and this makes it a tedious job to envision, test and adjust these designs.
For comparison: Fermium takes one second.


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Aaron Davila
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Member # 1874

posted January 01, 2012 06:43 PM     Profile for Aaron Davila   Author's Homepage   Email Aaron Davila     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hello Donald,
Congratulations on your new design!
I have tried to make a burr tools file of Millennium without success. I have tried twice and have messed one or two voxels up. With my computer taking anywhere from 2-4 days compute I have given up and am asking you if you may e-mail me a copy of your burr tools file.

thank you,

--Aaron

email address t1bur0n20061@gmail.com


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted January 02, 2012 12:50 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Sure.
No need to e-mail them.
Here are the burrtools files to all of my puzzles for everyone interested to download:

Natrium 11.1
Aluminum 13.4
Ferrum 26.3
Xenon 54.49
Tantalum 73.11
Fermium 102.98
Choronzon 347.320
Millennium 521.479

The Ferrum & Aluminum are two puzzles I also made 10 years ago in Spain and which I crafted in Olivewood at the time.

Hope you have fun with 'em

[ January 02, 2012: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Aaron Davila
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Member # 1874

posted January 04, 2012 11:48 PM     Profile for Aaron Davila   Author's Homepage   Email Aaron Davila     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Thank you very much sir!

I really hope some one has the talent to manufacture this puzzle out of wood, it would be a wonderful curiosity and mystery to those unfamiliar with it and a feared and loathsome object to those who own it!


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Guillaume Largounez
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Member # 1726

posted January 05, 2012 04:11 PM     Profile for Guillaume Largounez   Author's Homepage   Email Guillaume Largounez     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Hello Donald,
Congratulations for your new designs.

I wonder if I could build the Millenium without the solution, given the disassembled pieces.

I recognize the top left piece. It is a piece that moves all the time for another one to go back and forth through the notches. The single notch on the other side of the plain bar seems to come from the Fermium, where the notches were on both sides of that piece.
The other pieces of the same row should have their wide opening next to the series of notches of the first piece.

I can't be sure, but the little closed square on the next piece might go next to the first piece. It is the case in your other creations.

In the second row, the second piece should go in front of the puzzle (as I use to hold it), I guess, because it has a single central notch below the plain bar.

I don't ask you to tell me if I'm right, of course...


The puzzle should not be much more difficult to make out of wood than the Ultraburr. The pieces of the second row look sturdy, because they all have a double bar, except the second one.
This one and all the pieces of the first row have a complete bar that is not outside the piece, which should be quite sturdy if they are made with mortices.
The most fragile parts will certainly be the corners of the pieces of the third row. Since they are the same size of the pieces of the Ultraburr, it looks like it should be possible to make a Millenium that would work quite well.

The most difficult will certainly to have all bars perfectly perpendicular. A slight error in the angle puts the other end of the bar in the wrong place. That's why the end of all bars mustbe beveled. This way, if the end of a piece is not perfectly in the right position in front of an opening, the bevels allow to guide it into it.


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Donald Osselaer
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Member # 1852

posted January 06, 2012 12:13 PM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Thanks guys

Guillaume, like the Ultraburr is the big brother of the Xenon ... both the Choronzon and the Millennium use exactly the same system as the Fermium, with only a few small changes necessary to be able to work for their size.
By just looking at the pieces this is indeed quite obvious, to trained eyes like yours and mine at least
Therefore, for someone like you -who is able to assemble the Fermium without even knowing the solution- it should definately be possible to think out where the pieces should go and how it should be assembled.
Good luck!

Spoiler Alert:

The pieces as I have posted them are in their respective positions from top to bottom, from left to right and from front to back ... in that order. This is how I use them in my head and so this is also the order in which I put them on paper or in burrtools.

[ January 06, 2012: Message edited by: Donald Osselaer ]


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Donald Osselaer
Multiple
Member # 1852

posted January 15, 2012 11:24 AM     Profile for Donald Osselaer   Author's Homepage   Email Donald Osselaer     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
I've concocted a neat little puzzle.
It's also a seperated board burr, but this time irregular.
My wife gave me the idea of using a 1-2-3 constellation using 6 pieces.

Here it is:

It's level 26.2 and the solution is unique.

I tested it in Lego to make sure the completely closed little piece can not be twisted out while solving it.
It can be twisted quite a bit ... but it should be impossible to do anything but the solution.


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