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[Vinco] Kiss & Bi-cycle

Posted: February 2nd, 2014, 11:36 pm
by Pio2001
These two puzzles were part of my last order from Vinco. I had read very good reviews about the Bi-cycle, and the Kiss looks quite nice and complements well my Icosahedron 92. Both are inexpensive, but what eventually conviced me to buy the Kiss was the fact that this copy was made of dark plum, one of my favorite woods !


Bi-cycle small

Bi-cycle (pieces)

This bi-cycle is said "small", which means that there is also a bi-cycle "large". This is the same puzzle in two different sizes. The puzzle is made of two parts, themselves made of two pieces that can't come apart, but that can move relatively to each other.

The goal is to put together the two parts in order to rebuild the initial rectangular shape. I didn't find it very difficult. Actually, four people have tried it at home, and three of them actually solved it. A friend of mine used a different starting point from mine in order to find the solution.

I imagine that it may be started with from the assembled configuration, but it is maybe better to start from the disassembled state, so as not to get too many clues that would spoil the pleasure to rebuild the puzzle.
It seems to be difficult to disassemble, so that may be an interesting challenge too, but a bit risky, because the last move locks the structure. It is necessary to push gently at the right place in order to start the disassembling. And if we don't know where, and how hard it is necessary to push, there is always the risk to push too hard in the wrong place.

Type : Interlocking
Estimated solving time (assembling) :
Beginner : 30 minutes
Casual puzzlist : 15 minutes
Expert puzzlist : 5 minutes
The + : Original and interesting way to use the cubic grid. Appealing for non-puzzlists.
The - : Too quickly solved.
My rating : 4/5




I prefered the Kiss. It is made of six pieces that each consists in two spheres joined with a rod. I like its elegant geometry. I find it more difficult than the bi-cycle. There is a little "aha" moment in the resolution, when you understand its structure. It is at the same time that you realize that a good amount of dexterity is going to be involved !

It is not a problem to start with the Kiss assembled. It comes apart all at once, and it is difficult to notice anything useful when the six pieces fall on the table. The interesting part is rebuilding the puzzle.

Though the final shape is an icosahedron made of spheres, it is not a starting point for the bigger icosahedrons made by Vinco. It is an altogether different puzzle.

Wiki page :
Type : Interlocking
Estimated solving time (assembling) :
Beginner : 20 minutes or more... may not be able to solve it at all.
Casual puzzlist : 20 minutes
Expert puzzlist : 15 minutes
The + : Original and nice design. Beautiful puzzle. Fun to play with even when the solution is known.
The - : The puzzle may remain a bit loose and fall apart easily if we don't realize that there is a way to lock it properly.
My rating : 5/5

Re: [Vinco] Kiss & Bi-cycle

Posted: February 3rd, 2014, 10:31 am
by BarnDoor
You are correct that it is better to start with Bi-Cycle in pieces. Originally, this was how it was presented, and we had to find the solution shape without any picture ;) That makes it much more puzzling. Allard wrote about it here: ... osity.html

Re: [Vinco] Kiss & Bi-cycle

Posted: February 3rd, 2014, 11:01 am
by bluesign2k
I have a copy of Bi-Cycle and really enjoy solving it. Although it's not difficult, I didn't find it quite as easy as your estimated solving time suggests it is. The first time I solved it, although I had the general idea right from my first attempt, I usually landed up with the shape crooked.

I don't have a copy of Kiss, but I have had a play with Nigel's copy at an MPP. I din't manage to solve it :(
I recall that Nigel seemed to re-assemble it with relative ease until I highlighted something I noticed about the pieces... I assume he got it back together after that, but I never saw it happen :lol:

Re: [Vinco] Kiss & Bi-cycle

Posted: January 12th, 2015, 11:29 pm
by Pio2001
I've just received a new Kiss and a new Bi-cycle that I ordered for a friend.
To my surprise, they are quite bigger than the ones I've got ! Vinco has done new series with bigger spheres. The new bi-cycle is 5x5x8 cm, and the Kiss is a bit more than 7 cm across.

The fit is something random. My little Kiss easily falls apart by itself, while the Bi-cycle stands perfectly.
With the bigger new ones, it is the opposite. The Bi-cycle is very loose. Not to the point where it would fall apart by itself, but there is a fair amount of freedom in the final shape, while the little one, once solved, is completely locked.

On the other hand, the big kiss is very tightly locked (aah, Vinco makes me write strange things... :oops: ).
I didn't know that it was possible for this shape.