Monday, 9 December 2013

Ball In Cylinder #2

UPDATE 30 September 2017: Ball In Cylinder #2 is now AVAILABLE again! Please email me at smallpuzzlecollection@gmail.com to purchase.

Update 23 October 2017 - Dear Reader, please check out my new puzzle blog and e-storat http://mechanical-puzzles.com

Name
Ball In Cylinder #2

Designer
Jerry Loo. Jerry also designed the Ball In Cylinder #1.



Manufacturer
Jerry Loo. Limited availability as of this post. Priced at SGD$60/- plus S&H. Please PM me via my Profile email if you are keen to buy one.

Type & Classification

Sequential Movement.

Dimensions
7.5cm (height) x 4.4cm (diameter).

Materials & Construction
The BIC #2 is made entirely of 6061 aluminium, while the Special Edition, copper. Ball bearings are steel. 

IPP
I had planned to enter both my designs the BIC#1 and BIC#2 for the IPP33 Nob Yoshigahara puzzle design competition but was advised by Nick Baxter, the organising chairman, to only enter one design in order to avoid confusion. Hence the BIC#1 became the competition entrant, my first!

Overview
The design of the BIC#2 was conceived at the beginning of this year, a couple of months after my BIC#1 appeared on the market. For a brief history of my first and second puzzle design attempts which resulted in the BIC#1, click here

How to tell difference between the BIC#1 and #2? Dimensionally they are the same. The BIC#2 has a pair of circular lines on either end while the BIC#1 has only one. The exit hole on the BIC#2 is also off-centre to one side. Like the its predecessor, the object of the puzzle is to remove the hidden ball bearing within the cylinder.

I had received positive reviews from several well known puzzle bloggers in the community who had played with the BIC#1, including Allard Walker, Kevin Sadler, Roxanne WongGabriel Fernandes and Oli Sovary-Soos. I was very encouraged by this especially since my second design, the BIC#2 employed not only a totally different mechanical trick from the #1 but was in my personal opinion, measurably harder as well.

With this new design I went back to my old pal the metal fabricator (an elderly gentlemen who cuts, drills and grinds everything by hand) and showed him what I wanted. By now he has had a lot of experience producing my BIC#1s. So he gave me a nod and a smile and said "no problem". While the BIC#2 is a more difficult puzzle with more complicated internals, strangely it is actually easier to fabricate than the BIC#1 The first prototype was made and after some minor adjustments and tweaking, I produced a small batch of BIC#2s. 


During this time I also wanted see how the puzzle would turn out in copper. As copper is less common for sale on the retail market in small quantities than aluminium, the raw material was prohibitively expensive! And not knowing the kind of response I would get, I bought just enough copper to make four copies, three of which have all been sold, leaving the last one for myself. One thing's for sure, a copper BIC#2 is really heavy! It weighs about three to four times the aluminium version. At around 600 grams or so, its about the weight of a Revomaze Ex.

Difficulty Level
From what I have heard, so far only a handful of puzzlers have managed to solve the BIC#2. Not sure if this is good or bad tho'? Perhaps there are those who have solved it already but make no mention of it. I hope no one has given up on it yet. If anyone who is reading this needs clues or the full solution, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Finally, a word of thanks also to Kevin Sadler for posting his review of the BIC#2 on his puzzle blog.


5 comments:

  1. My pleasure Jerry! It is a fantastic puzzle and, as you say, a whole lot more of a challenge than #1!

    Ladies and gentlemen, if you are wondering whether you should consider buying it then do not hesitate for a moment! Buy it! Buy it NOW! It's brilliant!

    Kevin
    Puzzlemad

    ReplyDelete
  2. Old slow coach here still hasn't been able to solve his, that's why he hasn't written anything about it yet... will try harder! Sorry Jerry, I'm letting you down... allard

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Allard, no pressure. Like Wil always says, take your time and enjoy!

      Delete
    2. Come on Allard!!! Get a move on! Just don't mention Wil's "special" bottle!!!

      Kevin
      Puzzlemad

      Delete
  3. I too am having no luck. I spied a little hint, but none of my theories of how to use it have worked. I will not give up though!!

    ReplyDelete

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