I've had this metallic puzzle for a very long time (actually it's a replica since the original was lost). It was bought in a shop were I was told long ago that it must have a solution. The question is, topologically speaking, does it have solution?

Just need to know whether it has a solution to avoid wasting more time!


1 Answer 1


It is the Figure 8 Puzzle by Stewart Coffin.

This puzzle is

impossible to solve, assuming the eyelets at the ends of the wire are properly closed loops. See also this video, where a reasonable argument is given for its impossibility, based on an idea from a mathematical paper by Paul Melvin where the puzzle is proved impossible.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Finally!! I can leave it then to rest and stop wasting my time! Or perhaps I can lend it to my brother in law... :D Many thanks for your help! $\endgroup$ Apr 15 at 14:08

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.