Impossible Drill Bit Puzzle

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I made a 3d impossible puzzle. It can be used as a brain teaser or as a conversation starter. It looks nice on a table and is overall super cool.

Step 1: Finding the Right Piece of Wood

If you decide to build this puzzle, it is important to have the right kind of lumber. You want a soft wood like bass wood or pine. I used a two-by-four and it worked great. You are also looking for the wood with the largest growth rings (this is not necessary, but it will make the process easier).

Step 2: Cut the Board to Size

Use a circular saw (or another tool) to cut your board to the correct measurement. Mine was seven inches long by 1 1/2 inches wide, and 3 1/2 inches tall.

Step 3: Measuring the Notches

Because our board is 7 inches long, it will divide equally into 3, evenly spaced notches, with 4 castles between them. Each crevice and spire is one inch wide, and 1 1/2 inches deep.

Step 4: Adjust the Height of Your Saw

Flip your board upside down so the marks that you drew are touching the table. Then use the crank at the bottom of the table saw to adjust the height of your blade. You should make sure that the highest part of the saw is even with the lowest pencil mark on your wood.

Step 5: Cut Out the Notches

Use the mitre gauge on the table saw to help push your piece into the blade. Take off thin chips at a time using the kerf (width of the cut). Be careful not to remove to much at a time. Do this for all three cutouts.

Step 6: Begin Warping

The following steps are what create the illusion of impossibility. Partially fill a pan with water. Only fill it so that the bottom tower is covered. Place the wood so that it is standing vertically in the pot. Next, turn on the stove and wait for it to boil. Once bubbles begin to form, set a timer for 20 minutes.

Step 7: Use a Vice to Compress the Wood

After the timer goes off, take the wood out of the pan and put the end that you boiled into a vice. Compress the wood so that it is about half of the size of the other towers. Let it sit for a minimum of 12 hours. Having wide growth rings will make it easier to smash the wood. After letting it sit, take it out and make sure that it holds it's shape.

Step 8: Drill the Hole

Now that one side is compressed, we can easily drill a hole in it where our drill bit, nail, or bolt will go. Drill through the two center castles at a consistent angle. Make sure that the drill bit or other object fits through the holes.

Step 9: Boil Again

Next, you will boil it again for five minutes. The drill bit should be in the wood this time. This should bring it back to it's original shape.

Step 10: Sand and Finish

Finally, sand down and finish any sharp edges. You can stain it or add lacquer. I just left it as it is and it looks great too. I do not recommend painting because it will look like you tried to hide something. It can be used as a brain teaser or as a conversation starter. It looks nice on a table and is overall super cool. THE END

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3 Discussions

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jerrodl

5 weeks ago

"Honey, have you seen my 3/4" drill bit?"
"Oops."