Cast U&U (錯)

Posted on Oct 29, 2014 by Gabriel | 0 comments
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Hanayama seems to release Cast Puzzles faster than I can get them. It looks like my Cast collection is always incomplete... My latest effort in keeping with the tradition of adding puzzles to a never-ending collection is the Cast U&U, an intriguing design by Kyoo Wong, who also designed the recent Cast Delta. The theme for the U&U is "complexity", but it might as well be complication, since it gives you no clues or hints for the solution. The puzzle was presented at this year's 34th IPP and was one of the winners of the Jury Grand Prize award.

The Cast U&U is comprised of two almost identical U-shaped bolts and four almost identical nuts. These subtleties in the design are so small that you need to study each part very thoroughly. The two pieces have a natural silvery color, much like any other metal bolts, with no special coating - It would be scratched very easily otherwise. The size is quite small, but average for a Cast Puzzle, each part measuring 4.5cm in diameter (1.8").

The first thing you notice when you study the puzzle for the first time is that the nuts can rotate freely up and down the bolts, but they can't be removed. This immediately tells you that the solution must make use of the right positions for each nut. The bolts are not entirely round, they're actually flatten on both sides. The aperture between the two ends of each bolt is so narrow that you can't separate them by simply pushing them out.

Hanayama has rated the U&U as a level 4/6, but after having solved it within 10 minutes, I reckon it's not that challenging. Even putting it together again is not that difficult, although you have to keep the nuts correctly aligned, just like for when you solved it. The difficulty of the puzzle is pretty much finding the correct alignment of the nuts, which is easily overcome by a careful examination or at least some trial and error.

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Closing Comments:

Hanayama has yet again produced a great addition to the Cast Family. The U&U is a pleasure to play with, but that's already guaranteed with any Cast Puzzle. With 62 different designs already in the series, it's becoming increasingly difficult to choose the best ones. Nevertheless, this one belongs at least in the top 20.

Availability: The Cast U&U is available at PuzzleMaster for $12.95 CAD. You can also find all the others of the Cast series.


New Hanayama Website (in English)

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)


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