Thursday, December 7, 2017

Juno's third secret box puzzle

We have started selling Juno's third secret box puzzle "Club Case."
This puzzle is the second puzzle in the trump cards series which follows "Diamond Case." Juno used four different timbers for the puzzle; Karri, Koto, Burmese Teak and Zebrano. He chose the timber in consideration of the grainy woody texture and strength and used them for appropriate purposes.

There is a trump cards' club-shaped hole on the lid. A trick of the puzzle is partially visible through the hole. Juno thought that it's more fun to see tricks through the hole rather than a completely black box. Seeing a little hint makes you more curious and amused, you know? The movement of the pieces are a bit odd and interesting, so we hope you will feel the novelty of playing with "Club Case."

While he was making the puzzle, the CNC router gave an outstanding performance. He had to run the CNC router for about one hour and a half for making one puzzle. Juno expected that if he could use the CNC router for time-consuming work, he would have made puzzles a lot easier, but actually, he had to spend lots of time for careful finishing work with his hands. Therefore, "Club Case" is finely made and looks gorgeous.

"Club Case" is one size bigger than "Diamond Case" and the inside of the room of the puzzle is bigger than "Diamond Case." The shape of the compartment is ellipse, 72 mm major axis, 44 mm minor axis and the depth is 15 mm. You can keep small accessories like earrings in the puzzle.

My impression of playing with this puzzle; the hole of the lid stimulates my interest and it looked like giving me some hints to solve but I couldn't solve them. In short, I would say "Club Case" is not so easy as it looks but I like the design of the club-shaped hole. Well, what do you think?


Monday, December 4, 2017

Started selling 1:12 scale miniature furniture on Etsy

Dear puzzle lovers, today's topic is about miniature furniture.
Sorry for not writing about puzzles.

As I wrote on the blog on 27th of February, I have made several 1/12 scale miniature furniture and I had stopped making them for a while, but restarted it again recently.

I have got some timber called Silver Ash this time. Silver Ash belongs to the citrus family tree, and grows from Northern NSW to north Queensland. If you are the reader of this blog, you may know this timber, Juno uses Silver Ash for his puzzles.

I have made several chairs and tables using Silver Ash and decided to sell them on Etsy (PluredroAnnex).
If you are interested in miniatures, please take a look.

Currently, the stock is only two dining table sets but I'm going to add them on Etsy little by little.


* Our Etsy Shop: PluredroAnnex

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Pluredro Newsletter

Pluredro shop has started distribution of the newsletter!
We will send the newsletter when we start selling new puzzles, hold puzzle auctions on eBay or any other very important notices. Probably, the frequency of the distribution of newsletter will be once or twice a month.

If you would like to receive the Pluredro newsletter, please enter your email address under the left side of the top page of our online shop and press the "Subscribe" button. (See the red circle on the picture below)

Then you will receive a confirmation email from us.
Click the link of "Authenticate now" and all the procedure is done.

We are currently making two new different puzzles.
Please look forward to them!

Saturday, November 11, 2017

New Puzzle "Mirii 4x3"

We have started selling the puzzle Mirii 4x3. This puzzle will be shaped in four intersecting triangles when it's assembled. Puzzles that were based on this shape have been designed by others in times past but they were almost like a geometric object and their pieces didn't interlock much, just touched each other on the edges of triangles and all or most pieces were the same shape.

When Juno designed Mirii 4x3, he gave himself a task to design every piece which could connect and interlock in an elaborate way and he aimed to make each piece have a different shape. Then, he made a prototype using pine timber. After he made the prototype, he made up his mind to make puzzles with three different timbers. The timbers he used were Silver Ash (citrus family tree), Jarrah and Blackbean. These are all representative trees in Australia.

Mirii 4x3 is a difficult puzzle. The colour of the pieces can be a hint to solve it but the angles and the direction of crossing pieces of this puzzle are not seen in everyday life. So, you may be confused when you assemble Mirii 4x3 with which direction should make it up from where. However, it is well worth assembling. After you assemble it, you will see a beautiful puzzle that looks like a star. So, I think puzzle lovers would be satisfied with solving Mirii 4x3. This puzzle can be assembled by yourself (which means it can be assembled with two hands) but the surface of the piece is smooth and slippery, so it would be easier to use rubber bands for supporting it temporarily.

You may wonder what the meaning of "Mirii" is. I picked up this word from an Aboriginal dictionary. There are so many Aboriginal languages in Australia and this is from one of the Aboriginal languages and means star. It looked like a star to me, what do you think?

I hope you will pick up the puzzle that looks like a star as one of your Christmas ornaments at home.

Happy puzzling!

Mirii 4×3 – Polyhedral shape interlocking burr puzzle

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Accept multi-currency payment

There is good news for our customers!

We recently changed our online shop to accept multiple currencies. We run our business in Australia but most of our orders come from overseas. For the convenience of our overseas customers, the prices listed in our shop now show the customer's local currency and we have got rid of the previous foreign exchange charges.

Other than Australian dollars, we can now accept US dollars, Canadian Dollars, Euros, British pounds, Japanese yen, and Chinese yuan. When you visit our online shop, the site will automatically indicate your local currency but you are also able to choose your preferred currency by clicking on the currency on the top left-hand side of the web page.

The original prices of our products are set up in Australian dollars. The foreign exchange rate will be calculated once a day automatically and, when you pay, there is no exchange difference, so you simply pay the price indicated.

Up until now, we had only been accepting only Australian dollars, so customers had to pay the foreign exchange fee, but from now on, Pluredro shop will pay the foreign exchange charges, saving our customers about 3% from each payment. Isn't that good news?

We will continue to improve Pluredro shop to create a site that is simple and easy to use for visitors.

We look forward to you visiting our shop.

Friday, October 27, 2017

The new puzzle Reza 4-4 is on sale!

We have started selling one of the polyhedral puzzle series, Reza 4-4. Juno has made two polyhedral puzzles before; Reza 12-20 (Reza 12-20 were already sold out) and Reza 6-8, and Reza 4-4 is the smallest of the Reza family. There are three kinds of compounds of two regular polyhedra and now the Reza family covers all three.

Juno makes jigs every time he makes puzzles and this time he made five jigs just for this puzzle. When he made the jigs, he paid much attention to the orientation of the puzzle pieces placed on to the sled type jigs to minimize the chance of chipping off puzzle pieces.

The order to make checkouts was also important. He also considered the chirality of the assembled shape of the puzzle, right-handed or left-handed to match the leaning direction of the saw blade on the table saw because one chirality is more prone to chip outs compared to the others.

Polyhedral shaped puzzles sometimes become unstable and non self- sustaining when those are assembled. The puzzle pieces tend to come apart by the explosion type movement or coordinated motion. Reza 4-4 was the most difficult one to design the puzzle to be self-sustaining among the Reza family.

It is optional to make most consisting puzzle pieces identical in shape to make the assembled puzzle stable but he doesn't want to take that option because it spoils the fun of puzzles. He made the shapes of all the pieces of Reza 4-4 different and it gives you more fun to play with.

Reza 4-4 is now on sale.

  • Reza 6-8 – Polyhedral shape interlocking burr puzzle (QLD silver ash + American walnut)
  • Reza 6-8 – Polyhedral shape interlocking burr puzzle (QLD silver ash + Jarrah)

Sunday, October 8, 2017

"A Mazing Burr" now on sale

We ended the puzzle auction of the second grade of "A Mazing Burr" on Oct.4 successfully, and it's time to sell "A Mazing Burr"!

Of course, this time we are selling the first grade of products. Juno has done a neat job on them and carefully checked the movement.

This puzzle is made with Bubinga and Queensland Maple. As you can see from the name of this puzzle, there is a trick inside of it, he-he. This puzzle requires 17 moves to take the first piece apart from the assembled shape, yes, it's difficult but I'm sure it's worth playing for puzzle lovers.

A Mazing Burr is available on our online shop!


Friday, October 6, 2017

The Auction of "A Mazing Burr" Ended

Our 2nd auction event has ended. This time we had put 3 puzzles that had subtle imperfections on eBay. The results are as follows:

Puzzle #1: AUD $51.00
Puzzle #2: AUD $48.00
Puzzle #3: AUD $50.45

As we had promised, we have donated the total amount of AUD $149.45 to the Animal Welfare League Queensland and below is their receipt.

We are pleased with the result and maybe we will do the same type of auction someday. The information of the auction and our new products are always updated to our Twitter and blog, so please visit us sometimes.

We will soon start selling "A Mazing Burr" on our online shop.

Thank you for your help.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

"A Mazing Burr" Puzzle to Auction

We have put three puzzles up for auction on eBay!

Since we produce puzzles mainly using hardwood timber, it is impossible to completely avoid some imperfections, such as chips, grub holes, and cracks. Juno eliminates puzzle pieces that are not good enough to use as he processes the products. He also mends the pieces if the defect is not so significant.
When we finish producing the puzzles, there are a few that we are reluctant to sell at a fixed price. We usually mark those as second grade and give those away to our close friends as gifts. This time, we decided to put those puzzles up for auction and donate the sales to the AWLQ, the Animal Welfare League Queensland, to help save stray and surrendered pets. It's a little off topic, but we adopted one of our cats, named Midon, from the AWLQ.
You will find three A Mazing Burr puzzles in our eBay store. The starting price of the puzzles is $1.00 AUD! The puzzle will be officially released at our online shop for $75.00 AUD after the auction. There is nothing wrong with the three puzzles in the auctions, they are fully functional, and many people would find it difficult to find the subtle imperfections. It might be a good chance to get Juno's puzzle at a cheaper price!

We are looking forward to having you participate in the auctions.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Visible Framed Burr

This is our twelfth product on our online shop.
There are only four pieces and a frame but Visible Framed Burr is diabolically difficult because of its tricky moves of the pieces when you assemble and disassemble the puzzle.

Juno again used a CNC router to make the recesses onto top and bottom panels, also to gave a modification to one of the pieces to made the puzzle have a unique solution. Maybe, he just would like to play with the CNC router for fun. He also cared to prevent deformation of the pieces in long term, especially to the top and bottom panels, inserting Jarrah timber pieces to the ends of the panels.

The puzzle has reasonable size, though it doesn't mean the puzzle can be solved easily. You might struggle even to disassemble the puzzle.

We hope that puzzle lovers enjoy the puzzle.

Visible Framed Burr is available on our website.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Shipping puzzles overseas

It has been about 10 months since we started our online shop. Time flew by so fast.

When we just opened our online shop, some people who saw our postage might have thought that shipping costs were expensive. We have noticed that we had mistakenly checked the extra shipping options on the postage settings and it reflected total shipping cost. Juno soon realized the issue and disabled those non-necessary options. We also made a partial refund for the shipping when we realized we overcharged for the postage.

The shipping cost for our online shop is calculated automatically from an Australia Post lookup based on size, weight of shipping box and weight of products in the customer's cart and shipping destination.

As you know, we also have a shop on eBay and we are selling our puzzles there. When we sell puzzles on eBay we have to pay commission fees to eBay. So, we have decided that we will give a discount for the shipping cost for our online shop. The discount is cheaper than paying a commission to eBay. Now our overseas customers have the following discounts for shipping.

  • International Express - A$5.00 discount from Australia Post amount
  • International Standard - A$5.00 discount from Australia Post amount

There is also another change on the shipping for our online shop.
We realized that many of our customers chose the Economy Air option when they ordered our puzzles on our eBay shop. We enabled that option on our online shop as well. The option is available unless the total weight (puzzles and box) doesn't exceed 2 kg or 4.40 lbs.

Economy Air is the cheapest option on our online shop but the parcel is NOT trackable, unlike International Express and International Standard. Then it is harder to estimate where the parcel is and when it will be delivered. We therefore do recommend you choose trackable shipping options.

We are looking forward to your visit to our online shop.


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The Second Secret Box Puzzle "Diamond Case"

If you are the reader of this blog, you may know Juno's first secret box named "Framed Burr Box." It is a big secret box, and measures 120 x 120 x 200 mm. So, he made a small, hand-sized puzzle box named "Diamond Case" this time.

He used the CNC router a lot for making Diamond Case.

Well, I cannot tell you the details of how he used the CNC router because it might be the hint to solve, he-he.

There is a point to pay attention to, especially for woodworking lovers. Please look carefully at two diamond-shaped buttons on the puzzle.

As you can see in the picture below, there are several options to cut diamond shape on timber. Juno wanted to cut the diamond shapes like A. Actually, B is easier for cutting than A but he thought that A looks better.

Well, what do you think?


* Pluredro Shop: Diamond Case – secret puzzle box

Monday, August 14, 2017

The Host Gift of the International Puzzle Party 2017

As people love many kinds of hobbies, there are many kinds of gatherings in the world. Junichi Yananose (aka Juno) attended one of the biggest worldwide events for puzzle lovers, the "International Puzzle Party" early this month.
The International Puzzle Party (hereinafter called IPP) takes place somewhere in the world every year and it was held in Paris, France this year.

For Juno, this year's IPP became a memorable one. One of the reasons is he had not attended IPP for seven years. Another reason is he had an opportunity to make a gift for the host of IPP (Frans de Vreugd) this year. Brian (Mr Puzzle) and Juno were asked to prepare a commemorative puzzle gift for the host and they have done that combining their original two puzzles and a crystal pyramid.

Luckily, Juno had beautiful dark color Jarrah timber and Mr Puzzle suggested to use it for the base of the host gift. First, Juno milled shallow grooves and a circular hole on the surface of the timber using a CNC router.

These two grooves accommodate a crystal pyramid and The Louvre sequential discovery puzzle. Then, Juno routed the edge of the base using a decorative router bit set onto his favorite original router table, and put small feet under the base.

Mr Puzzle made a supporting post for "Reza 12-20" using a wood lathe because as you see, "Reza 12-20" has a spherical shape and it needed something to hold it stable. A square shaped cover was cut from 3mm acrylic sheet at Mr Puzzle's workshop to be set under the crystal pyramid. When you see through the drawing printed on a piece of paper set underneath the crystal pyramid, the effect that is given to the drawing caused by reflection of the pyramid is very interesting.

After all the shape of the base had been made, he coated and sanded it several times and polished it using a plastic sanding sponge to have a smooth surface.

The base itself weighed 3kg and that means the total weight of the host gift would be over 5kg, and has significant volume and a tough-handling shape. It must be very difficult and risky to take the assembled host gift to Paris.

Two of the puzzles, base, post and the pyramid were brought to Paris separately. Juno fetched some of those items to his IPP37 hotel room. He set the supporting post onto the base, and then partially disassembled Reze 12-20 by removing several pieces, inserted the post into Reze 12-20, and re-inserted the removed pieces to the puzzle. The Louvre and the crystal pyramid were set onto the base at the last moment, and finally, it was given to the host at the Award Dinner Party.

Our small concern is that he didn’t get the solution to those puzzles. Juno himself needs an hour and a half to assemble Reza 12-20 checking the solution. And Frans might be courageous enough to challenge the puzzle. We might have a chance to see 60 sticks stacked onto the base of the host gift in his puzzle room in the future.
We hope that Frans loves this year's host gift.

* Pluredro Online Shop: Reza 12-20 - Polyhedral shape interlocking burr puzzle


Tuesday, July 4, 2017

New Puzzle "Pisa #2 + Cubin Burr"

Pluredro has started selling the new puzzle "Pisa #2 + Cubin Burr."

"Pisa #2 + Cubin Burr" is the 10th puzzle of our products. This puzzle is comprised of two puzzles, one is "Pisa #2" and the other is "Cubin Burr".

At first, Juno was going to make boxes for "Penta Cuboid" that is selling on the online shop now. He had started making the boxes for "Penta Cuboid" at the end of 2016 but found out that "Penta Cuboid" would come apart inside "Cubin Burr" and it wasn't good. He needed to design a box that can keep its shape when the puzzle is assembled. Then, he designed a new box, the "T-groove box."

So, there are "Cubin Burr" boxes left without anything to be packed.

Juno considered and designed a new puzzle for being packed inside "Cubin Burr." It's "Pisa #2."

He designed "Pisa" in 1994 and "Pisa #2" is a new version.
Both puzzles, "Pisa #2" and "Cubin Burr," have unique solutions.

There are lots of difficult puzzles that were designed by Juno but compared with other puzzles, these puzzles are not so difficult, I think. However, they are not easy.

When I tried "Pisa #2" for the first time, I assembled 7 pieces out of 8 but the last one couldn't fit. It happened many times. I assembled 7 pieces and noticed that I failed. How vexing!
There are only 8 pieces with a simple design but it's not as easy as it looks. Maybe if you are lucky enough, you may solve it in 30 minutes or if you are not so lucky, you may need a day or more.

Juno says that he added a white line on the burr. I think this line makes the puzzle look good. This white timber is Silver Ash (It is named Ash but this tree belongs to the Citrus plant family) and the brown timber on "Cubin Burr" is Blackbean.

I hope that "Pisa #2 + Cubin Burr" will bring you a lot of fun.

"Pisa #2 + Cubin Burr" is available on our website.


Sunday, June 25, 2017

Juno's First Secret Box Puzzle "Framed Burr Box"

Looking back at the past puzzle design of Juno's, there were no secret box puzzles at that time, so it seems that he came up with the idea of making a secret box type puzzle. While he was thinking of the design of the secret box puzzle, he got the idea of integrating a framed burr puzzle with the secret box.

He designed the first Framed Burr Puzzle in 1991. Since then, several people have designed and made Framed Burr types of puzzle but Juno hadn't designed many. Maybe now is the time to use the idea of the Framed Burr.

It was around March of this year that Juno started making the "Framed Burr Box." In the beginning, he didn't intend to make the puzzle complex and he just thought that using a framed burr as a lid of the puzzle box would be enough but after for a while he changed his mind and kept adding more tricks to open and disassemble the box.
The burr puzzle, which is on top of the box is, so to speak, the first challenge of the puzzle. There are two more challenges to the puzzle, which are different types to the first one.

We use a CNC Router often, but this time, it played a very important role in producing the puzzle. Juno used a CNC Router quite often, milling the name of the puzzle on top of the puzzle and making parts as shown in the picture below.

One day, I received a bill from the electric company and I was surprised to see that the bill amount had suddenly increased! Then I realized it was because Juno had been using the CNC Router all the time. Roughly, it required three hours of CNC work to make one Framed Burr Box. No wonder it cost a lot.

Well, I personally love this puzzle because usually a secret box puzzle has only a small space inside, which can contain only tiny things. I know it's a puzzle not an ordinary box but it's nice to have a larger space, you know? The size of the space in this puzzle box is larger than ordinary ones, and you can even keep a 5x5x5 professor Rubik's Cube inside.

Juno has made 20 Framed Burr Boxes, and he says that he is not going to make any more Framed Burr Boxes, so this is the first and last time. Honestly, even with an aid of the CNC Router, this puzzle was assembled with lots of parts, which have many delicate cutouts and shapes processed by various wood machinery, and I can understand it's hard to make them again.

I'm very happy that the Framed Burr Box has been finished, and I hope that the Framed Burr Box will bring a lot of fun to puzzle lovers.

* Pluredro online shop: Framed Burr Box