Tuesday, 19 April 2016



Ken Stevens

Manufacturer & Availability
Produced by Buttonius Puzzles & Plastics. A number of interesting laser cut acrylic puzzles, some past IPP exchange puzzles are available for sale from their site. Matchless is currently available from Wil Strijbos for 20 Euros.

Type & Classification
Dexterity (or so it seems)

7cm x 7cm x 1.2cm

Materials & Construction
Laser cut acrylic with steel screws and the match is blue coloured wood. Very well made and put together. Excellent quality. The option to use screws to clamp the several layers was a good choice otherwise the gluing would have been visible through the clear acrylic. 

Now Matchless is a very interesting and unusual puzzle. This was Peter Hajek's IPP35 Exchange Puzzle in Ottawa, Canada last year. 

The goal of the puzzle appears simple enough; to remove the match from the box, but the execution much more difficult than you can imagine. As you can see from the photo, there are two holes (just large enough for the match to go through) on two sides of the box. And the initial reaction is to try to use dexterity and turn, tap and shake the box and hope the match would slip out of the hole. Which is what I did and in fact I did succeed after a little while of trying. Several other puzzlers whom I shall not name achieved the same result this way.

However Peter indicated to me there is a way that is far more "elegant" and effective for extracting the match (without tools of course) and when I tried it, I couldn't agree more.

Difficult if you don't know the correct solution but very easy if you do! Definitely a nice change away from the usual genres of puzzles.


  1. I was able to solve this puzzle two different ways in less than a minute! I do not know which solution is "correct".

    1. George, Peter indicated two ways, but one is better than the other

  2. Nice review Jerry. I did the same thing with mine. Emailed Wil S. and asked if this was the correct way or if there is a more elegant solution. He assured me that there was, about then a solution hit me. ;-) Much easier. I am still not sure if it is the right one, but I think I will stick with it. Wonderful puzzle.

  3. This is indeed a nice puzzle. I immediately knew what to do (ie: not using dexterity)and solved it quickly. There are 3 ways of solving it: dexterity (the worst way),my method which works and the official one which is almost similar but a bit "dangerous" (actually you need to take care...).