How to Make a Cube Within Cube Within a Cube Puzzle




About: it's only impossible if you stop to think about it

In this instructabe I will show you how to make a cube within a cube within a cube.
The process itself is not very hard but it takes some time making it.
The cube have no purpose, exept form maby getting people puzzeld about how you got them in there.

If you make this remember that safety gear is important. Always wear ear protection and glasses while using power tools!
dust maskes also

Step 1: Tools You Need

Here are the tools you will need for making this cube.
The drill press you see is not really necessary, but it makes it a lot easier. i strongly recomend using one.

Step 2: Marking

Begin with sawing out a square wood piece. The length of my cube was about 6 cm, but it may wary vary depending on the drill diameter.
I recommend using a hard type of wood like I did. The wood I used was mahogny.

After marking the senter of all sides you are ready to go to the next step.

Step 3: Drilling

When you drill out the holes be very careful, so you don’t break the wood or cut yourself.
begin whith drilling out the lareger hole. But dont drill it to far in, and always make sure every hole is the same lenght.

Step 4: Cutting Out the Cubes

Now its time to cut out the cubes : ) be very careful while doing this, so you don’t cut  yourself or  brake the cubes. A sharpe kife is strongly recomended when doing this.

Step 5: Sanding

Now all you have to do is to sand it.
This takes some time and can be hard whit the inner cube.
As always begin with rough sand paper and go down to finer.

Step 6: Finishing

Now you can make a final finish by using some sort of oil or paint.

In the one to the right I used oliven oil. Oliven oil worked just fine.

Other alternativs can be:
Wood oil
Mineral oil




    • Sew Tough Challenge

      Sew Tough Challenge
    • Paint Challenge

      Paint Challenge
    • Backyard Contest

      Backyard Contest

    34 Discussions


    3 years ago

    This is awesome I going to make it eventually


    8 years ago on Step 6

    You should not use cooking oil as it breaks down and will become rancid with time (that will attract insects and rodents if your not careful). Mineral oil or a proper wood finishing oil are your best choices.

    It's a great project and instructible. I assume that the spelling (use of the wrong word) errors are language issues rather than lack of spell checker. If you would like, I could work with you to correct them.

    3 replies

    Extra virgin olive oil works well though.
    I've got a set of beautiful wooden bowls I bought at least 8 or 9 years ago that were olive oil finished, and have never gone rancid or anything like that. No special care, either. I use them as "junk catchers" in the living room, so they get the dust wiped out occasionally, but nothing else, and one of them sits in a spot that gets sun for part of the day.

    Animal based oils or random veggie oils ARE a bad idea.

    In fact, I used olive oil. And it worked just fine.

    I have now edited the instructable and changed cookingoil with olive oil. I also tryed to make my spelling better.


    Thanks for this instructable. It is good project for me to work on with my daughter.

    You may have gotten lucky with Olive Oil, but beware, if/when Olive Oil rots it gives off a NASTY rancid smell. My guess is that in the past the olive oil polymerized or dried without going rancid first. This may be a trick of your climate or just luck, but you will certainly know when it goes bad. I have a cutting board in the shop that my wife won't let back in the house.

    My personal favorite is Tung Oil. You could soak the whole thing then just wipe off the excess. Tung Oil gives the wood a nice warm glow and solid protection when it dries.


    7 years ago on Step 5

    very nice ive seen this around but never an explanation


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Made mine as a gift for the camp staff's Christmas in July thing we do. it was a favorite and a lot of fun to make.

    1 reply

    7 years ago on Introduction

    Nice , we showed at a local county fair for about 25 years and we always had some of these sometimes to hand out to someone that wanted to try and carve .and a flyer to when the club use to meet ( now my son and I am only living members ) sand I would start with my wife's finger nail files ...emery boards I think they are called


    7 years ago on Introduction

    I've been wanting to try this with soapstone.


    8 years ago on Introduction

    this is really cool! have you tried this with mdf yet? it might yield a nicer finish and the edges could be smoother. but i suppose thats personal preference :P

    3 replies

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    I have not tryed wit MDF and probably never will. this is because I do not like MDF.
    I recomend using a hard wood type but thats my opinion :)


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    true, the middle sized cube might be easy to break with the mdf, it does get kind of thin..

    but the mdf would be able to absorb a lot of finishes.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    But how are you going to get 6 cm thick MDF, witout gluing many layers.
    Pleas post a image if you make a MDF verson

    Thanks for the cool idea! I made a cube within a cube in about 10 minutes.

    I found using a coping saw blade with one end cut works better than a knife. Otherwise you could use a pin-less scroll saw blade.

    1 reply