Wednesday, 25 February 2015


Until I got my hands on the Garmbaad, I have never played with a Jos Bergmans designed puzzle. I saw it on Brian Menold's site WoodWonders and immediately liked the shape of it (was never too fond of cubes).

You could probably call Jos Bergmans the "King Of Rotations". Of his 58 puzzle designs uploaded to PuzzleWillBePlayed, 33 of them require rotations to solve! Now its one thing to design a high level interlocking burr or puzzle with an astronomical number of moves but I think its just as great a feat or more to design one which requires rotation of pieces. Especially one with multiple rotations needed!

The Garmbaad is a very well made puzzle comprising a good choice of exotic woods, namely, Purpleheart, Redheart, Yellowheart, Paduak and Maple. Great colour contrast here. Fit and finish is very good with all the pieces sliding smoothly. In fact, since Brian has gone into full time puzzle making and other related stuff, he has been churning out superb quality puzzles from time to time and we are likely to see some new offerings on his site end of February (which is tomorrow!).

I am not sure what "Garmbaad" means and a Google search didn't turn up anything either. If anyone knows, please drop me a note. From a puzzling perspective, the Garmbaad is not too difficult with a level solution. The first several moves are not hard to find, but the rotations involving the last two pieces are very tricky indeed. There are multiple rotations involved here not just on one but all three axes. Done correctly and you will be able to slide the two remaining pieces apart nicely. Very unusual moves!

Putting the pieces back to the solved state requires everything to be done in reverse. Again the rotations to get the two relevant pieces back into their correct positions may prove to be of some challenge. I got the orientation of the pieces wrong and had to re-try a couple of times.    

Overall a great puzzle, not only in terms of quality and build, but the puzzling is also fun. Its quite amazing the design, as you watch the pieces slide this way and that into each other and lock into place. And certainly not a puzzle that would overly frustrate..

1 comment:

  1. I may have to get one of these to match a print I have on my wall

    (not sure how to make the link clickable, sorry)