Ecorider

Showing posts with label Kevin. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kevin. Show all posts

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Mickey Mouse


Today I decided that I'm going to post about a set of puzzles no one else has talked about yet. I also got to thinking of my friends and decided I'd tempt Kevin a bit more...eat your heart out my friend.

Next to puzzles, Disney has got to be my next favorite thing. I know I've said it before, but it is so true, and when I can combine Disney and puzzling together, I'm one happy camper!

Another thing that makes me happy is finding an old puzzle and playing with it again. It's like Christmas when I open my bed, or a drawer or a cabinet I haven't opened in a while. This morning was Christmas. Last night Uwe asked me to measure some puzzles for him (yes, I have man tools and now know how to use them.) and I rediscovered a set of puzzles I haven't seen in a while.

This set was made by Kawada in Japan. I managed to pick them up quite a few years back now, and while they are no real challenge, they are Mickey Mouse and you can't go wrong when the two are combined.

There are four different puzzles here and each is really just an old puzzle with a Mickey Mouse theme. Mickey set to music. Kind of reminds me of the philharmagic, or fantasia. I wonder if that is where the inspiration came from.

Solving wise, these puzzles took less than a minute each if that. They are such an old puzzle as the base. These are the ones my grandfather gave me so many years ago. Not the Mickey bit-the puzzle.

If you can get ahold of these, they are worth it for the characters. My only complaint? The keychain bits rusted through and had to be tossed away. I don't like rusty fingers.





Saturday, November 17, 2012

Thanksgiving

You know, one puzzle I don't have is a Turkey.  I guess I will have to rectify that problem.  Maybe I can go get a puzzle and glue some feathers and a waddle to it.  Now there's an idea, DIY turkey.  Come to think of it, I don't have a cornucopia or any of the other Thanksgiving fixings.

But I do have A LOT to be thankful for this year.  I still have Mr. Man and he's still putting up with my collecting obsession.  Bug is still not into puzzles, but always helps with the crystal puzzle assembly.

I've got some amazing friends who I adore. I get to see SmaZ and his new creations on a regular basis, I meet Uwe for dinner once a fortnight at least.

I get to go on around 5 or 6 puzzle trips a year.  I love IPP and the Guangzhou parties are just a blast.

I get to travel quite a bit for work and I usually manage to make a few puzzle purchases and a side trip to meet a fellow puzzler or two.

I accomplished a dream by mass producing my own puzzle.  (and if my luck holds, it will be at a local attraction in the spring.)

I get to read Allard's and Kevin's and Gabriel's and Jerry's and Brian's  and Neil's and Oli's blogs.  That keeps me looking for puzzles to purchase, and others to drool over.  All of them write so much better than I do, so if you haven't read their posts yet, go do so today!

Oh yes, and I got a few new puzzles this year....a few hundred that is!

Yep.  Life is good.  I have a lot to be thankful for.  I hope you take the time to sit back and think over your puzzle blessings.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Mf8 stars

Yes I know that's not the official name for these puzzles but it fits the overall shape nicely. Well, the shape of the center bits anyway.

I've been blessed to meet the owner of Mf8 back in the summer of 2009. (Incidentally, that first puzzle was the crazy 4x4)  Since that first meeting, I've had the pleasure and privilege of meeting up with him quite a few times a year since then.  Dinner, drinks, a bit of peaking into the dark corners and parts bags in his warehouse.....He's trusted me with secret puzzle releases for quite some time now and has allowed me to play with many puzzles, take photos of many more and every now and again take one home.  And each and every time someone beats me to the information release over on TP.  But hey, I'd rather know and play than brag and tell.  Add to that his making my exchange puzzle for me this year as well as helping SmaZ with the manufacture of a few puzzles and you have one great guy on your hands!

It dawned on me today while I was reading Kevin's blog about his set of DaYan gems that I have not blogged about these so I'll make it up to you now.  Or should I say I'll make Kevin go spend more now.  :)

First up is the corner turning star.  I know I've not got the names right, but they are one thing on TP and something else on Mf8 and something else everywhere else you look so I'll just call them stars!  My toys, my choice of names!  This one came out in 2010, but didn't hit the market until 2011.  A nice one to play with, and not too difficult to solve.  It messes up nicely, but doesn't jumble so there is no 'real difficulty' in solving it.  Other than the obvious solving issues one has with puzzles.  I also have this one in ice-blue plastic, but since it is effectively the same, there is no point in showing another photo.

 Next we have the edge turning version of the star. This one does jumble, but in my photo I had a bugger of a time just turning the edges.  This one is very stiff. The screws are tightened down and as with all the puzzles in my collection, there is no lubrication. The corners on this one don't turn unlike the first star puzzle shown above.  This one is really pretty to me.  It reminds me quite a bit of TomZ's Curvycopter.  I think the first person to make one of these might have named it something along those lines.

Eat your heart out Kevin!  This one turns across the middle and that squiggle you see on there?  It's a signature.  We had a lucky draw at one of the Guangzhou meet-ups and I won this one as my prize.  Otis was there and was nice enough  to sticker it for me. I made Mr. Fok sign it before we left.  This has got to be a rarity.  He's such a humble man that it took me 2 years to get a signature out of him.  I don't know of anyone else who has one, but if there is someone out there, do let me know. I'd love to change my posting here.

Finally we have the last of the stars.  The Bauhinia.  That name hasn't been taken yet, and is absolutely perfect for this puzzle. IT looks just exactly like the Hong Kong flower!  It's so commonly found here, it's even on our coins!  This puzzle is just beautiful!  I first saw this one in 2010 as well, but at the time it had so many problems that it simply couldn't be made.  If you think back, Mf8 has made at least 20 puzzles either by himself, or in conjunction with DaYan and others since that time.  He did me a HUGE favor by making my puzzle, so the time from conception to production isn't that long afterall.  He did say he had a lot of projects in the works and no time to make this one...last January when I asked after it again.  I managed to steal this one after the HK Asian Championships of the WCA Cube competition kind.  We had an exhibition and Mf8 sent this new one along for display.  As we were packing up, I stole it!  But I'm an honest thief, when I see him next I'll give him the cash for it.  There's a video of it on my YouTube channel, but as usual it's mostly me blabbering on.  Watch at your own risk, I've been told I'm in need of a new camera. I'm really wondering if I'm in need of a new set of eyes because the videos look fine to me....

So there you go Kevin.  Enjoy!  And then go buy.  It's only around US$160 for the lot of them.  You can afford it you know you can, and Mrs. S....Well, a girl can never have too many shoes can they????  And for the record Kevin, I know.....







Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A lot of puzzles to solve...

If you read my blog, you'll realize I was in Guangzhou this past weekend for the 8th anniversary of the Mf8 forum.  While across the border I met up once again with friends old and new.  I really do love these guys.  We have so much fun! It's odd. Kevin from PuzzleMad once called me one of the guys.  Well, when I go over there, that is just exactly what I feel like.  I was explaining "he is my brother from another mother" to Tom, and after that, it was done.  I was called "my brother" the rest of the night.  Now most ladies would probably be upset by this, but for me it was a great pleasure.  It means that gender bias thing is gone! What a relief that I never again need to worry about that different gender thing. and I'm also very pleased to report that the guys were still gentlemenly enough to carry those super heavy bags for me.  (they also carried Michael's so that's not saying much!)

ENOUGH!  I'll write up a full trip report when I can find a bit of time in the next week.  In the mean time, I wanted to tease you all with some puzzle photos.  Normally when I go over there, I come back with upwards of 100 new toys.  this time?  I didn't really go do any shopping, and didn't see any toys in the stores that we did go to that caught my fancy.  That's not to say I came home empty handed. I did have a few toys by the end of the weekend.  I was very graciously given a number of puzzle gifts from my friends.  I was happy that I could return the gesture with my puzzle monsters (which by the way were a real hit!)

This trip netted a whopping 10 puzzles!  But each and everyone is very special.  They were gifts (all but that 8x8x8, but that's another story)  Yes, I know there are only 9 in the photo, but I also got a nine piece burr that was hiding in a box.

So what have we here?  I only know the names of a few.  The orange one is a upcoming release from Mf8 and Da Yan.  The silver one laying on the side is Wil Strijbos washer cylinder.  This one has been reviewed by Kevin, Oli, and Allard.  Unlike them, I haven't managed to open mine yet.  I will one of these days I swear I will!

A TomZ/Mf8 3x4x5 is in the bunch.  I told Tom if I didn't get one, I would have to kill him next time I saw him.  (see the prototype for my exchange puzzle was put on hold for TomZ's puzzle-but since it's a nice one, I'll forgive him!
Let's see, the green football puzzle and the wooden 4 piece are gifts from the teacher-I must go through my boxes and find a few for him.  The black and white 4x4x4 is actually an AJ's version of the camouflage 3x3x3.

The orange one is a 5 layer 6 armed core thing without a name :-)  I don't know what to call it, but it's from the Duo of Da Yan and Mf8.  As is the dino thing there. That was a hoot.  He just looked at me, said here Roxy and tossed it over.  In the bag it went! Yes, now I canfinally play with it.  The other one I have is signed so mucking is out of the question.

But it wasn't all fun.  I did have some puzzle causalties.  3 to be exact.  My Rattle box from Eric Fuller doesn't bounce.  It hit the floor in the hotel room and one piece snapped off.  The 5^5 Octahedron I got from CuberVietnam now needs a new core as somehow that got broke, and I lost my Leesho puzzle to SmaZ.  (Well, ok, he liked it so I gave it to him...but that's just semantics isn't it?)

Right, Those are the puzzles of the weekend.  Reviews of them may or may not come at a future date.   Trip report and Hong Kong toys fair update coming early next week!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

On the Fourth Day of Christmas

My true love gave to me
Four Revo Mazes
Three Diamond Puzzles
Two Crystal Dolphins
And a Santa on a cube tree.

Ok, these have me stumped.  The Revo Mazes, which I've been told are easy, are not!  I've yet to solve a single one of these things.  I'm surprised that anyone can.  As you can see from the webpage, there is a gold version as well. I think since I have 4 expensive paperweights I may just pass on the 5th.  But if anyone is feeling rather generous and wants to gift me one....(Ok, a girl can dream can't she!)  I bought the blue and the green from the company in the UK when they first came out-or maybe when the green came out I bought backwards to save shipping costs (lord knows how I hate those) I had them sent to a friends in the UK and had to wait until he went home and came back during that summer.  The wait almost killed me, but once I started playing, the holding on to that little tiny bolt that pokes out did.  My hands simply aren't strong enough for that!  The bronze and silver I picked up at IPP30 for a good price.  PuzzleMaster just didn't want to ship that extra weight back to Canada, and since I was only traveling to HK and bringing all my puzzles on the plane, I simply couldn't resist the deal!  I read over on another blog there is an orange one out there, and as much as I'd love to get one....Money better spent on other toys.