The Melting Block Puzzle

  • Advertise with us
Project by GaryK posted 12-13-2008 11:13 PM 14312 views 79 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Christmas is coming soon so I thought that I would make some gifts. Here is a simple little puzzle that is very easy to make. It took me about 1 hour minus glue and finish drying time.

The first picture shows the full box with an extra piece sitting on it. The object of the puzzle is to fit it in.

Doesn’t look possible, huh?

Well, the second picture shows all nine pieces inside the box. The third picture shows the nine pieces.

I have drawn the blocks up in Sketchup along with the solutions

You can find the file here .

I made the blocks from Swiss Pear and the box with Hard Maple with Mahogany splines.

You can make them from what ever wood you have laying around. You could even make every block a different type of wood.

The only important thing is to make sure the sizes are the same as in the drawing.

The box is best made after you make the blocks. Fit them together and then make the opening in the box slightly bigger.

Have fun.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

16 comments so far

View lew's profile


13547 posts in 5254 days

#1 posted 12-13-2008 11:37 PM

Great idea, Gary!

Thanks for the Sketchup file.


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View brunob's profile


2277 posts in 5668 days

#2 posted 12-13-2008 11:57 PM

Very cool Gary. I think I’ll try this.

-- Bruce from Central New, if you'll pardon me, I have some sawdust to make.

View sIKE's profile


1271 posts in 5252 days

#3 posted 12-14-2008 12:11 AM

As always, very nice Gary!

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

View rikkor's profile


11294 posts in 5373 days

#4 posted 12-14-2008 12:20 AM

This looks like a fun project.

View Bill Akins's profile

Bill Akins

425 posts in 5197 days

#5 posted 12-14-2008 12:34 AM

I have always loved wooden puzzles and have been wanting to make one. I think I’ll try yours!

-- Bill from Lithia Springs, GA I love the smell of sawdust in the morning.

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 5487 days

#6 posted 12-14-2008 01:02 AM

DaveR – They look correct.

Just to play it safe here are the dimensions. Also for those who don’t use Skecthup.

Look the third picture above to see all 9 parts.

The short blocks are all 19/32” thick. The tall blocks are 1 3/16” thick.

Just cut one tall and short piece for each size below. Then make one extra of the smallest piece.

For those who are Imperically challanged :-)

2 3/4 = 69.8500 mm
1 3/4 = 44.4500 mm
1 3/8 = 34.9250 mm
1 3/16 = 30.1498 mm
7/8 = 22.2250 mm
19/32 = 15.0813 mm

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View pommy's profile


1697 posts in 5190 days

#7 posted 12-14-2008 01:29 AM

guys when are you going to go metric please lol…......


-- cut it saw it scrap it SKPE: ANDREW.CARTER69

View CharlieM1958's profile


16292 posts in 5717 days

#8 posted 12-14-2008 01:36 AM

Very cool, Gary!

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Woodhacker's profile


1139 posts in 5222 days

#9 posted 12-14-2008 07:19 AM

Gary, Nice idea….and thanks for the dimensions and sketchup drawing.

-- Martin, Kansas

View sharad's profile


1119 posts in 5303 days

#10 posted 12-14-2008 08:29 AM

Very innovative puzzle for Christmas. It will keep people busy for some time.

-- “If someone feels that they had never made a mistake in their life, then it means they have never tried a new thing in their life”.-Albert Einstein

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 5487 days

#11 posted 12-14-2008 07:21 PM

DaveR – Yes those are the correct dimensions.

In my drawing above I just call that the thickness.

The drawing you display just have them standing on edge.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View scottb's profile


3648 posts in 5825 days

#12 posted 12-16-2008 12:55 AM

Wasn’t it Dewey (of the Dewey Decimal system that was pushing us to go metric? Obviously it took) This is another great puzzle. and I still have time to knock one out this year if I so choose. This and the next have been favorited. Thanks!

-- I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it. - Van Gogh -- --

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 5487 days

#13 posted 12-16-2008 02:52 AM

I got a PM asking how I safely cut these small pieces. Thought that you all might be interested.

Click for details

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View YorkshireStewart's profile


1130 posts in 5400 days

#14 posted 01-04-2009 04:50 PM

Neat puzzle Gary. But the eight ten-thousanths of a millimetre is certainly beating me and my Incra Rule! <g>

A happy and safe 2009 to you and yours!

-- Res severa verum gaudium - True pleasure is a serious business.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


24957 posts in 5174 days

#15 posted 02-28-2009 09:52 AM

Lookin’ good. I have to try this. Got grandkids coming up to work on it when I get done wtit it :-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

showing 1 through 15 of 16 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics