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Rubik's Cube

Hi people,
I've found myself unexpectedly drawn into the world of cubing and I must say what a fascinating world it is! Now I have quite a collection of interesting twisty puzzles with which I can bore my friends and family!

Here's most of my collection (May 2009): -

OK, starting at the top we have my first cube in its box and a Rubik's Snake.
The Nintendo Ten-Billion Barrel (1980) and an octagonal prism.
Next we have some 3x3's: puzl competiton speedcubes in white and black and a see-through pink Type-C DIY.
My first genuine Rubiks Cube on its stand, a purple C4U DIY and a restickered Rubik's promotional cube.
Meffert's Pyraminx and cheap clear DX Pyraminx.
White MF8 Megaminx and PVC Megaminx with CubeSmith stickers.
White Tiled DX Mefferts clone 4x4 and EastSheen 4x4 with CubeSmith stickers.
Black V-Cube 5 and EastSheen 5x5 with CubeSmith stickers.
My overhauled Rubik's Clock and a copy of Dan Harris' book in a handy copy reader stand.
A couple of original Square-1's and a cheap DX Sq-1.
My first V-Cube 7 (white) and my new black V-Cube 7.
Maru Mini 3x3, mini EastSheen double keychain 2x2, EastSheen 2x2 with Cubesmith stickers.

 

Beginning with the Cube

On Fathers' Day (June 15th) 2008 my wife and children presented me with a 3x3x3 cube and I decided to learn how to solve it. Back in the early '80s when the Rubiks Cube became a fixture in the childhoods of so many, my elder brother owned one, but I regret that I didn't take the time to learn a solution although I could solve the first two layers by intuition and a simple algorithm respectively.

Well, the resources available for learning new skills have certainly become more accessible! With the masses of tutorials and beautifully crafted pages on the net I was able to find some memorable beginners algorithms from the "cubing for lazy people" type tutorials and within a couple of weeks I had achieved my initial goal and I could impress my children with a reliable solve in about 3 minutes (they're easily impressed by their dad :D ).

Of course I couldn't help being amazed by the YouTube footage of speedcubers, blindfolded cubers, one-handed cubers, etc. and in that context my achievement seemed laudable! However, I like to view myself as a happy lifelong learner and I embrace the absurdity of my feeble efforts: I'm proud of this little goal!

After a couple of weeks I found that my cube was getting a bit loose and was locking up in annoying ways. This cube was an unbranded clone from a gift shop costing £5 and it felt pretty shoddy so I started looking out for a genuine Rubik's Cube. I found one for £10 in a toy shop whilst shopping in Nottingham and the difference was amazing: no lock ups, smooth and quick movement, a delight to handle. My solve times dropped to about 2 minutes and spurred on by this improvement I started reading the main speedcubing and twisty puzzle websites: -

 This led me into the amazing world of speedcubing from which I doubt I'll return!

Speedsolving.com - All Puzzles.  All the Time

My journey continues in the following pages, organised in rough chronological order...