Paper Puzzle Box: the Rubik's cube anyone can solve
Paper puzzle box can be made into a working Rubik's cube, a twelve-month desk calendar or a special gift box with your message or logo.
When I figured out how to make this amazing little puzzle box my first thought was: "This is so cool I have to show everybody!" However, once you've made an invention public, anybody can take your idea and run with it. So I curbed my enthusiasm till I could file for a preliminary patent, which offers one year's worth of protection. Unfortunately, the real patent application is a very expensive process ($7,000 to $17,000 or more!!), way beyond my means. This is why I need your support.
I want to make this paper puzzle box for you because I want to share the joy and wonder that something so incredibly simple and yet incomprehensible can emerge from a single sheet of paper! Fun enough to be considered a toy, it remains, at heart, a utilitarian, sturdy little box you can use as an economical and ecological gift, promotional item, or unforgettable swag. I want to produce this box locally and responsibly. In the long term, I want to be able to license this box for others to produce and distribute so I can continue to dream up other new designs and ideas.
That's my goal. Now let's get down to business and talk about...
Pledge anywhere from $4 to the moon, but all those who contribute $50 and up will receive credit and a link to their (PG13) website on mine. See the list of backers from my previous kickstarter here. Top donors ($500 and up) will be at the top of the list, all others will be listed in "pledge" order. The sooner you pledge, the higher your website will be listed.
The Paper Puzzle Box PDF download.
All my backers will get this PDF file. You can print, cut, glue and fold either the calendar or the Rubik's cube yourself with an ordinary printer and light card stock. The finished boxes measure 5.7 cubic cm -- the same size as the standard Rubik's cube (about 2.25"). I drew two versions of the calendar, a US version with the week starting on Sundays, and the European version (also in English) formatted for A4 paper and with the week starting on Mondays. The download design is slightly different than the ready-made version, even though it looks the same from the outside. You will need glue to assemble the download, and it includes a paper "ring" which holds it shut. Also included (with the download AND the printed version) is a very cute little matching pop-up gift label with a helpful sketch showing how to solve the puzzle.
Please note, that to allow the PDF to be printed on standard sized paper (either letter or A4) the download version is NOT cut from a single sheet of paper -- but the printed cube is cut from one piece.
The Rubik's Cube five pack ($25 and up)
Supporters $25 and up will receive both downloads plus five packs of the Rubik's cube puzzle box. Just like the downloadable version these measure 5.7 cubic centimeters (that's about 2.25"), but unlike the PDF, no cutting or gluing is required for assembly. Instead of the sliding ring to keep the box shut, these have a tab which secures the box shut. For ease of shipment (for me) and storage (for everyone) these will be shipped flat, but they are easy and quick to fold. No printing, cutting or gluing is required. Matching pop-up gift labels with instructions for solving the puzzle completes the package.
Rubik’s Cube® used by permission of Rubik’s Brand Ltd www.rubiks.com
Please note that my agreement with Rubik's Brand Ltd is limited to direct sales by me -- these cannot be re-sold in stores!
Alternate Rewards ($50 & $90)
In case you'd like to support this project but you don't have a use for these boxes I've set up two alternate rewards:
- For a $50 pledge I will send you the pop-up paper house kit, manufactured thanks to my first Kickstarter campaign. Although you can purchase the kit from my website if you need to have it immediately, you will save on shipping if you pledge through here. My supplies are dwindling and I won't be making more of these, so if you like this house, buy it or pledge now!
- For a $90 or $180 pledge you can start a collection of hand-made pop-up cards selected from the templates I sell on my website. This is your only chance to get ready-made (and hand-made) pop-up cards, because I only sell the DIY digital files to download and make yourself. Just this one time I will make these for you and then sign and date them.
Custom Paper Puzzle Boxes (from $500 to $2000)
The calendar and Rubik's cube have a total of 12 outward facing surfaces, but thanks to the tab you can keep the calendar or Rubik's cube intact and also show your logo or message.
Custom paper puzzle boxes can be used for:
- Corporate gifts or convention give-aways.
- Packaging for small items for stores or businesses who want to stand out from the crowd.
- Weddings keepsakes to hold gifts or sugared almonds.
- Large parties (such as b'nai mitzvahs) goodie boxes.
- Any special occasion when you'd like to offer all your guests a memorable souvenir and gift.
You can keep the Rubik's cube or calendar design and customize just these two surfaces, or you can put your images on all 12 surfaces (plus the additional areas beneath the tabs). Send me your square images and I will slice them up and arrange them so that when the box is folded and rotated your design comes together. Please note that YOU provide the images for the custom cubes -- I will give you the specs, templates, and advice if needed, but I cannot manufacture your custom reward unless you send me your design...
A note on choosing multiple rewards
Since some of my rewards are completely different from the others, you may want to sign up for different reward categories. If you'd like the Pop-up Paper House, that's easy, because you can buy it directly from my website, and then pledge here for the paper puzzle boxes -- but if you'd like my hand-made pop-up cards in addition to the boxes, I suggest you ask a friend to pledge on your behalf. When the time comes to fill out the survey, your friend can just enter your address instead of theirs and you will get all the rewards you'd like.
Stretch goals: $20,000, $30,000 and $50,000
The more support you give me, the more I can create. During my first Kickstarter campaign, I surpassed my goal and was thrilled to be able to drastically improve the rewards I sent out. I hadn't planned or promised any of the extras in advance but this time, I'd like to be prepared. I want to let you know now of some of the extras you'll get if you help me spread the word and help me surpass my goal. You will receive extra Rubik's cubes, and a physical calendar in addition to the PDF version, but I will also manufacture a completely original paper product, a diabolical tromp l'oeil fruit fly trap I recently designed. This innocent-looking orange is available as a download on my website, but I will produce a physical trap to ship you. Stretch goal details are described in the reward section, but I may add even more as we go along, especially if we beat these goals.
NOTICE TO MARKETERS: If you would like to offer me your marketing, packaging or any other type of service, please note that I will ONLY respond to my backers who contact me through Kickstarter. Thanks for your understanding.
Risks and challenges
There are practically no risks involved in completing the rewards: I have already shown the nets (the cut and fold plans) to a manufacturer, and there are no special issues or challenges in producing them. I also secured permission from Rubik's to use their name and image. My other rewards, such as the pop-up paper house kit, are already made and ready to ship. I am one person, however, so should anything happen to me (picnic, lightening), then there could be delays shipping the rewards.
I have not (yet) limited the number of custom designs I can make so if a large number of people sign up for custom designs, there may be a delay to produce those rewards. Please note that YOU provide the custom images, so if you sign up for a custom design but you don't send me any images, I won't be able to ship your reward.
Most of the risks are for me: will the amount I've budgeted for the patent be enough? I've done a significant amount of research to make sure nothing like this exists or has been patented before, but maybe I missed it, and after spending all this money and time my patent application will be refused. Could I have reinvented the wheel?
In the scheme of things the worst case scenario isn't that terrible. If it already exists it certainly isn't widely known, and hopefully with this campaign I'll have spread a little happiness. For me there is no better antidote to depressing world news (climate change, war, epidemics) than playing with a piece of paper and being amazed at what it can do. If I have been able to share that joy with you then I have already reached my true goal.
- (44 days)