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The SuperX Puzzle

Welcome to my first puzzle project in over a year. I guess I got the bug again and dug out my SuperX design from early last year. Seemed still fairly plausable so this page is diarise my progress on it. This will eventually become an article and will be moved to the article library on the twistypuzzles.com website.

 October  2005   

Had a weeks holidays down the coast and it was a pretty lazy affair. I spent the week mostly sleeping and working on the puzzle. I bought some sheet plastic and decided to try and build up the outside using layers.

First I had to work on some exceptionally professional sketches for the inner core to work out how layering could be implemented:

This helped me visualise how many curved pieces I would need and what tools I would need. I require a tool to cut circles out of plastic at specified distance. I found a DAFA Compass Cutter and this does the trick.

DAFA Circle Cutter Tool
Found for AU$11 so you don't have to spend much. Also includes two blades but more are recommended to keep it sharp.

Test cuts

Ignore the ruler on the tool. This is inaccurate and useless. Use a real ruler to measure the distance between point and blade.

More crop circles

Sheet Plastic
I chose some flexible thick semi-transparent plastic. This way I could see the layers underneath other layers to help me line things up properly.

A note on the circle cutters accuracy.
In short, it is, and it isn't. Once you have your measurement, The cutting will give you perfect and accurate circles. But getting the measurement is painful because the tool is made of slightly flexible plastic. This means there is a small micro gap in the sliding piece of the cutter. This slight movement can mean the different of .5mm when tightening on your chosen measurement. For pieces this small, accuracy is everything. So in summary, I got it to work ok, but I will be on the lookout for metal precision tools in the future. Not something you can get at Kmart.

First pieces
I first cut out the base arc bits to make up a Groove Slider. By making this piece, I could use it to test measurements and line up opposing bits from other pieces. You can also see my scapel. Perfect for cutting the straight lines with a steel ruler.

First three layers
In this photo you can see an irregular pentagon layer (superman logo shape - 1 layer), the base of the Groove Slider (not glued), and two opposing curve pieces at the top and bottom of it (two layers thick each). They fit snuggly and the slider (two layers thick) can be slid in and out with ease.

Five layers
A double layered lip is added to the pentagon base which overlaps the Groove Slider piece holding it inside. The dimensions of the base piece is 1.5mm which makes these bits small, fiddly and difficult to get accurate. You'll notice I also chopped out gaps in the base of the pentagon. The reason for this will be shown in the next entry.

Raising the Groove Slider
Also the Slider itself has a two layered thick slim piece glued into the centre which acts as the guide rail.

Finishing the Groove Slider
Another two layered thick slim piece glued into the centre of the Slider, and a final two layered Groove Slider base is glued the top of that, making a total of 8 layers in the Groove Slider.

That's as far as I have gotten in a week. But now that I know what I'm doing, I can churn out the other two pieces like this and join them into one Groove Block forming one cubie of the inner 2x2x2.

 September 2005   

Found the old designs. The pieces to make up the puzzle are:

Outer Wedges

2x2x2 Caps

2x2x2 Groove Blocks

2x2x2 Slider Pieces

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