I was recently mentioning that there was a third entry to the IPP competition in 2003 from Czech craftman Vaclav Obsivac which I could now finally solve and is therefore for review. It goes by the name of SANDWICH and can be bought at his company VIN&co for 11 Euro only.
This is Vaclav's first entry in the contest with a packing puzzle means that the overall target is to place the 8 pieces in the given SANDWICH frame. He rated this puzzle as 5+ out of 5 and I confirm --> it is a BEAST! It took me a full 6 houres (always 1 hour a day) to finally solve this puzzle which makes it for me the hardest till now as well. Funny was, that I sketched the inner grid of the SANDWICH frame on a piece of paper and constructed the solution outside the puzzle - that was 02:30 a.m. and having spend already 45 minutes and because I had to to go to work in a few hours I said to myself I will put it into the frame the next day. The next day after coming back from work I wanted to put the pieces into the frame and write a short review, however, I had to notice the puzzle's real difficulty --> I was not able to put the pieces back in due to the restricted space of the outer shape; there are small triangles in the 4 corners and due to the stand it gives 2 small and 2 bigger windows where the pieces can be put back again. Eventually I solved it yesterday and this was a REAL achievment for me!
Due to the very low cost and the original design this puzzle is a must-have for every serious collector but let me spread a word of warning: it is a devil! I strongly believe even real puzzle cracks will have a hard time with SANDWICH --> don't do that again Vaclav:-)