Welcome to the Solution of Rubik's Magic I, which is actually two puzzles in one, and each puzzle is nothing more than an 8-piece jigsaw puzzle (with a bunch of fishing line wrapped around it). You can either solve the side where the three rings are apart, or solve the side where they are looped together. You cannot solve both sides at the same time; for as you solve one side the other becomes scrambled. Before trying to solve any side of the puzzle, it is best to educate yourself about the thing by reading this page.
(Linked Side only)
Unlinked Side: The side of the puzzle where the rings are unlinked. When this side of the puzzle is solved, the rings are all in a straight row, and the puzzle is at the 4x2 rectangular shape.
(On this side of the puzzle, no arcs overlap each other in any tile.)
Linked Side: The side of the puzzle where the rings are linked. When this side of the puzzle is solved, the puzzle is at the notched 3x3 shape, and the rings are staggered (like they are on the Olympic's flag).
(On this side, certain tiles have arcs that overlap each other.)
Signature Tile: The tile on the Unlinked Side that has Erno Rubik's signature on it; a very crucial tile of the puzzle.
(Caution: there is another tile on the Linked Side that looks very similiar to the Signature Tile on the Unlinked Side. Try not to confuse the two of them.)
Triple-Arc Tile: The only tile on the puzzle that has three arcs on it; the most critical tile of the puzzle.
(Note: this tile is always on the Linked Side.)
You've probably noticed that there are numerous troughs that hatch across the surface of each tile. Some troughs are empty, while others are strapped with cords that look like fishing line. Once the puzzle is at the 4x2 shape, one side has cords in the extreme corner troughs, while the other side does not. It is obvious that the cords hold the 8 tiles together, but it is important to recognize which side has corded corners. It is also important to realize that the corded corners can jump from the Linked Side to the Unlinked Side at any given time.
|Corners with cords||Corners without cords|
The only two possible flat shapes|
that can be formed by the puzzle
Q: What side is which puzzle?
A: Once the puzzle is in the 4x2 flat shape, study the tiles on both sides. Only one side has the Triple-Arc Tile, and that defines the Linked Side of the puzzle. By process of elimination, the other side must be the Unlinked Side. Therefore, you don't have to worry about any "you got chocolate in my peanut butter" axioms.