Cast Dolce (美)

Posted on by Gabriel | 3 comments
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(Click to Enlarge)
Akio Yamamoto, besides being one of the designers with the most Cast Puzzles released, is also responsible for many of the best-looking and most elegant designs in the popular Hanayama series, as is the case of the Radix or the Marine Series. Yamamoto is also a romantic, and proof of that is clearly seen in two of his creations, the Cast Amour and the Cast Dolce, with the latter being the one reviewed today.

The Cast Dolce is yet another one of Yamamoto's masterpieces, which by coupling together the two universal symbols for male and female (also known as the astrological symbols for the planets Mars and Venus), he not only created an exquisite puzzle, but also a graceful and artistic object of admiration. The contrasting colors of silver and gold are a nice metaphor for the two opposite sexes depicted in the puzzle. The Cast Dolce was released by Hanayama over 10 years ago on January 2002.

(Click to Enlarge) - One of the Steps
The puzzle itself is not overly difficult, but for a difficulty level 3/6 it sure puts up a fight. Separating the two pieces can be more troublesome than you'd expect. The golden part has an opening which must be aligned to the silver's notches at the center, but the solving process is a little more complex than that. What's interesting about this puzzle is that its main features let you know only part of the solution, since it is obvious that the opening should pass through the notches, but you need to find out the correct angle and right sequence of the steps needed, and that is no easy task.

After solving the puzzle for the first time and while I was trying to put it back together, I found that it's possible to solve the puzzle with just one single movement, and no, it doesn't involve brutal force, just a slight pressure. Is it just a design flaw or is it supposed to be like this? - I honestly don't know, but it sure it's easier than following a series of steps. Let me know if you also found this alternative solution.

(Click to Enlarge)
Closing Comments:

The Cast Dolce may not be the most difficult puzzle you'll ever solve, but what lacks in challenge definitely compensates in beauty and elegance with a perfect harmony between the two pieces. A great gift for someone you love or just for the romantic at heart.

Availability: The Cast Dolce is available at the Finish store Sloyd.fi and you can find there all the other Cast Puzzles in the collection as well.

Links:

Hanayama Cast (in English) - Very useful website in English, with plenty of information on all things Cast.

Hanayama's Factory Visit (Many thanks to Roxanne Wong for sharing these pictures)


3 comments:

George said...

I found the quick solution first. But on my copy it does seem to require a bit of force ...

mhuti said...

This puzzle always reminds me of the sort of thing Prince (aka Artist formally known as Prince) might wear. As you say Gabriel, not the hardest puzzle but an interesting/engaging design.

Gabriel said...

The force needed probably varies from puzzle to puzzle.

mhuti, indeed, Prince is into stuff like this. Who knows, maybe he already has one ;)

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