Introduction: Reviving a Traditional Puzzle With a Twist

About: I am just a mechanic!!!!!

As a robotics lover, i was trying to do something new. Then i thought of making a puzzle. But there were already many. So i decided to remake a childhood puzzle with a twist.

This has a traditional image solving puzzle which when solved can provide a key hole for the secret compartment.

On the other side there is a water and balls game which brings back a lot of memories.

This box may seem to complicated but is quite easy and interesting (especially if you are getting bored in quarantine due to COVID-19). You are free to use your creativity to add/deduct or even replace the puzzles.


I tried my best to make this using things that you can find around your house so you don't have to go out because of the current pandemic.

  1. Cardboards with different thickness
  2. 2 Images. (you can get them from magazines like i did)
  3. Styrofoam
  4. BBs/Airsoft pellets (
  5. Aluminium can or plastic from packaging
  6. Small clear bottle
  7. 2 cheap droppers
  8. Popsicle stick
  9. 2 empty pens/button tops from old toys
  10. small and thin wooden stick

Tools i used -

  1. Hot glue gun with glue sticks
  2. Super glue
  3. Tape
  4. Box cutter
  5. Scissors

Step 1: Image Solving Puzzle (making the Puzzle)

This puzzle is quite old but can still occupy you for hours (if you are like me). The puzzle here will have the new twist mentioned in the intro.

I will be making a 3x3 puzzle with a width of 7.5 cm and height of 10 cm in this tutorial. (picture 1)

  1. Use a thick cardboard and cut 2 squares with a height and width of 7.3 cm. (picture 2)
  2. Then cut a grove on the other side of the square with the marked paper so that an popsicle stick can move freely inside. (picture 2)
  3. Then cut a paper the size of the squares and fold it in 3 parts
    horizontally and vertically using a of origami.(

  4. Using a bit of glue stick the marked paper on the square with the grove and an image from a magazine to the another one. (picture 3)

  5. Glued the 2 squares in a way that the grove stays in the middle and the image and marked paper on either side.(picture 4)
  6. Then simply cut the smaller squares with a box cutter.

Now to making the case to hold this.

Step 2: Image Solving Puzzle (making the Case)

Now to make a case for the puzzle -

  1. Cut a thin cardboard with the given measurements (or according to your design) like in picture 1.
  2. Then fold the cardboard accordingly and glue the sides to make the case.(picture 2)
  3. Use a thicker board for the top. Cut it keeping it 0.7 cm smaller.(picture 3)
  4. Glue the two parts together (picture 4) and insert the puzzle(side pieces first).
  5. If the pieces don't move smoothly you can sand the edges a bit.
  6. Finally cut a piece of clear plastic for the cover (like in picture 5). I kept the top a bit wide so that it stays inside and doesn't fall out.

You now have made your very own image puzzle. Give it a try before moving on.

Step 3: Water and Balls Game

This is an old school game which many of new generation people have never heard of. But it's quite interesting so i decided to add this to the puzzle box. let's get started -

  1. Cut the flat part of the bottle then make it into rectangle.(picture 2)
  2. Cut the droppers at few cm above the end of the inflated part (the part which you press you get water in and out) like in picture 3.
  3. I used plastic from packaging for the bottom and top. I made 2 holes for the droppers, inserted them and glued them using super glue and hot glue (though super glue alone would do the job fine).
  4. In order to block the balls from going inside the droppers use a small wooden stick and glued it to the bottom using super glue.(picture 5)
  5. Now to make the basket for the balls take a piece of the same plastic used in the previous step and made an U shape like in picture 4 and glue it to the middle of the container we made using super glue.
  6. After this, glue the bottom part we made earlier and glue a clear plastic on top with a small hole for to insert the balls and water. (picture 6) I used super glue for this.(amazing thing BTW)
  7. Finally insert the BB's and water then seal the opening with plastic and super glue. (picture 7)

Step 4: The Overall Case

To make the make case use thicker cardboard.

  1. Cut the board in the given measurements (picture 1) and then stick them to the sides of the image puzzle.(like in picture 2)
  2. Then use styrofoam and scrap cardboard to make the base for the water game buttons. It gives extra strength.
  3. For the background of the water game i will use another image from a magazine which was from the same article.I glued it to a thin board.(picture 3)
  4. Glue it to the case with hot glue.
  5. For the buttons i used back caps from empty pens and glued a piece of plastic to prevent the caps from falling out (picture 4). You can use button tops from old toys if you have them.
  6. Then make holes for the buttons on a cardboard.(picture 5)
  7. Place the water game on the case and then glue it to the case.
  8. Tape the cardboard with buttons on the top. The tape is more secure in this case.(picture 6)

Step 5: The Key Holder

To make the key holder just cut a cardboard in the following way and then glue it to a side of the box.

Step 6: The Outer Layer

Using thin cardboard cover the entire box. The cardboard i used was apparently small and couldn't cover it fully. So i had to cover up the image puzzle with a separate piece.

I also folded all the edges to make it look smooth.

Step 7: The Bottom Cover

To make the bottom cover -

  1. Make the necessary holes.
  2. Leave about 1 cm for the sides.
  3. Glue it to the bottom.
  4. Finally glue the sides.

Make sure not to leave glue visible on the sides.

Step 8: The Locking Mechanism

After spending hours on figuring out an easy but efficient locking mechanism, i found out one. To make it -

  1. Cut a rectangle from an aluminium can.
  2. Cut a smaller rectangle inside it leaving 1 side attached. (picture 1)
  3. Take a piece of cardboard so that it it is in line with the hole in the image puzzle.
  4. Attach the aluminium cut-out on the end of the cardboard you just cut using either glue or tape.
  5. Bend the aluminium like in picture 2.
  6. Insert the whole thing inside and cut the excess from the other end.
  7. Make a structure using plastic or the can like in the picture 3
  8. Finally attach this inside the box like in picture 4 & 5.

Make sure to glue the inside part securely using hot glue.

Step 9: The Top Cover

To make the top cover -

  1. Cut a piece of styrofoam that fits snugly inside the compartment opening.
  2. Make a small cut on the bottom of the styrofoam like in picture 1.
  3. Insert the part we made before and the styrofoam in place.
  4. Apply hot glue on their back and press a cardboard against it to stick it to the parts.
  5. Make sure it doesn't stick to any other thing.
  6. Fold the 4 sides.
  7. After some time insert the popsicle stick from the bottom of the box all the way until it doesn't go any further.
  8. Then gently pull out the cardboard.
  9. Not cut of the edges leaving 1cm.
  10. Finally glue the edges to make something like in picture 2.

Step 10: Done!!!

You have done it! Give yourself some treat for it. Now you have full authority to decorate it however you like. I am not that good in decorations so i am leaving it to your capable hands and creative minds.

Don't forget to tell me in the comments about the experience and the fun you had with it along with how you decorated or modified it to your taste.

Step 11: Even in Home, Stay Safe

Just because you are in your home doesn't mean you are 100% safe. Especially when working with sharp blades and devices which use high temperature (like the glue gun). I wasn't careful enough and you can guess what happened.

So be careful no matter where you are!!!!!!!!!

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