## Tuesday, May 30, 2017

### Dayan Gem V version 1

Originally posted May 2, 2017 on my BudLCuber Google site.

After restoring the 17 to order once again the last few days I longed to get out another to add to the mix. I picked up a few but decided on the Dayan Gem 5. It is stickerless. Instead of looking up my notes immediately I wanted to take a fresh look at it in light of Al Bob Charlie and my cubing adventures of late. Probably because of all the Skewbing I've done lately it struck me right off that this puzzle is very Skewb-like. It has 4 small triangles that are like the first four corners of a Skewb. It has 4 large triangles that are like the last 4 corners of the Skewb. It has 6 square sections, each made up of 3 pieces, that are like the 6 squares of the Skewb. Then it has 12 pieces that complete the big triangle "corners." After solving it I scrambled it and solved it without twisting the faces with the small triangles. It was exactly a Skewb!

But the first solve was a bit of an adventure. It started out scrambled. I had no idea what the final color scheme would be. It has 8 hexagonal faces and 6 square faces, so 14 faces. The six square faces are the standard Rubik's Cube colors. 6 of the 8 hexagonal faces are too. Then there is a pink and a purple side. After solving it I saw that opposite colors were just as they are on a cube. But it isn't at all obvious when the beast is scrambled. I started by putting together the square sides. Then I could see where they went in relation to the small triangles. URD and ABC were about all that was required. The 12 final small pieces could be placed one or two at a time using the URD 3-cycle that I use on the FTO and on the F-Skewb.

Following are the notes I made in my Solution Guides spreadsheet years ago.

 1 14 centers The 8 central triangles can be solved in either 0, 1, or 4 twists. 1 EPS is the worst case scenario. The 6 central strips on the square faces can be solved using Double EPS. Use Double EPS rather than simply EPS so the triangles stay solved. At most 3 D-EPS will be needed. 2 12 small edges (corners) Start with the whites on bottom. Whites in the middle layer can be solved with 1 or 3 twists. Whites on top can be solved with 3 or 4 twists. Next solve the 6 pieces in the middle layer. 3 or 4 twists each if they are in the top layer. The remaining top 3 pieces will take 0 or 1 twist to solve. 3 12 large edges Hold any triangle on bottom. Twist a large triangle layer as either R or L. You don't want to move a small edge to the top layer. Do an URD 3-cycle. Sometimes squares get built but need flipped. The up-back-down-switch-up-forward-down-replace-go back edge flipper works great. Notes When I first got this puzzle I worked out a solution that used a bit of reduction, and a 3-cycle that used an inner slice. I watched rline's tutorial, but it seemed unnecessarily difficult. But the one thing it did have going for it was no inner slice moves. So after some bantering with Konrad online I set out to come up with a solution that was better than my original one, and better, in my opinion, than rline's. The above is it. In my original method I started by building square faces, checking large triangles, solving the reduced edges (square faces), solving the 4 centers that hadn't been solved since the beginning, and finally using my slicy 3-cycle to place all the little edges (corners).

I tried it. I like it. A lot.

### 17 Puzzles

Originally posted on April 21-22, 2017 on BudLCuber Google site.

Roriana stayed with us for a few days this week. How fun! One of the things we amused ourselves with was

We brought her home with us after visiting last weekend. When Roark and I were playing catch outside he spotted an osprey. Here he is looking at it through the binoculars with Roriana close by.

Four of the 17 puzzles... well... I haven't played with in quite awhile. The Windmill Cube just takes some getting used to. It is really a 3x3x3 cube, but shape-shifts and requires orientation of the middle layer centers. It is also more challenging to orient the middle layer edges. But it can be solved using the Working Corner Method I have been having fun with lately. The 3x3x3 with circles—all are zero faces, which means that the pieces inside the circle do not move when the layer is twisted. I find that this makes the solve a little more challenging than a 3x3x3. One easy approach though is to start with the edge pieces that are inside the circle. Then use ABC to solve the white outer edges. From there it is pretty much the Working Corner Method. It took me awhile to remember how to solve the corners of the 3x3x2, but I finally did. The Crazy 3x3x2 was beyond my powers of recollection. I was on the right track, but couldn't recall all the details, so I looked it up in my spreadsheet.