Monday, 25 November 2013

Noncsi

Name
Noncsi

Designer
Tamas Vanyo.


Manufacturer
Eric Fuller. Website www.cubicdissection.com. 44 copies were made, each priced at US$79, currently sold out.

Type & Classification
3D packing; sequential movement

Dimensions
8.5cm (Length) x 8.5cm (Width) x  4.7cm (Height). Very nice size and comfortable for puzzling.

Materials & Construction
Two versions were offered. Caroline Ash with either Peruvian Walnut or Bubinga. From Eric Fuller, so quality and finish is top notch. Construction is very solid. Fit is snug but not tight; pieces move smoothly, but those in high humidity countries would no doubt want to "dry out" their puzzle if possible before playing. 

Overview
This is one of the more unusual 3D "packing" puzzle designs I have come across. The object is to remove the 8 pieces (comprising of just 3 different shapes) and then place them back into the frame.

The frame itself is pretty odd as you can tell from the photo below. A smaller hollow frame fills a larger one, together forming "rails" for the pieces to slide in and out through a single entrance, almost like a maze.


The Noncsi has a level 2.3.9.7.5.6.6.7 solution, meaning that it takes 2 moves to free the first piece, another 3 for the second, then 9 for the third and so on.

There is only one direction for the pieces to slide out and I found a number of twist and turns (no pun intended) as I puzzled along. And their movements must follow a specific order otherwise things would get jammed up.

As in puzzles of this nature where it already comes in the solved state, I typically remove the pieces slowly and lay them out properly in the correct order, so that reassembly later becomes easier. For the Noncsi, I even numbered and tagged the pieces just in case there happens to be an inadvertent mix up. Suffice to say, I enjoyed the process of disassembly and reassembly, which didn't take too long.

Tagging and numbering helps! Saves a lot of headaches later
Difficulty Level
Not difficult (if you follow the way I did it :-). But I think it would be very challenging if the pieces are fully jumbled up after removal, unless you have a damn good memory, even though only three different shapes are present.

Summary
A different kind of packing puzzle indeed! As Eric commented on his website; "a very unique concept from a new designer...". I fully agree. A handsome looking one too I might add.

And if you are wondering what "Noncsi" means? Well, its the name of designer Tamas Vanyo's middle daughter; click here to read Saul Symond's interview with Tamas Vanyo. 

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