Gingko Combination Puzzle

The newly-invented, trivial, Ginkgo “puzzle”

For years I’ve been scribbling doodles of a Combination Puzzle I’d like to create, with ginkgo-leaf-shaped pieces that turned in place to allow or prevent their neighboring pieces from turning.

Yesterday I realized that I could easily create my puzzle with FreeCAD and print it on my 3D printer. Had I had my printer so many years ago I could have saved myself a lot of paper and time!

So I designed the 3D files for a couple of different puzzle pieces, printed them, and in no time at all saw that one design wouldn’t work at all – axe-shaped pieces fully tessellate the plane, making it impossible to move any piece! I also found that the ginkgo-leaf design works.

I had hoped that this ginkgo puzzle would be as interesting as the famous Fifteen Puzzle, but quickly found my puzzle is trivial to solve. It is kind of fun to play with, though.

I’ve put the required files on my Thingiverse page, and put up a video of the puzzle in operation.