Ravensburger 32,000 piece puzzle

I usually blog about enterprise architecture, but this entry is a bit different. I am 1/2 done with the Ravensburger 32,000 piece puzzle (named Double Retrospect; Art by Kieth Haring), so I thought I’d start writing about my experiences in putting it together.

First Half of 32,000 piece puzzle

First Half of 32,000 piece puzzle

I received the Puzzle as a Christmas Gift (December 25, 2011). Here is the box. It came with its own dolly to wheel it around.

32,000 piece Puzzle Box

32,000 piece Puzzle Box

I finished the first half on March 18, 2012. So slightly less than three months. We’ll see if I can keep up the pace.

I have to admit, when I received the gift, I found it a bit daunting. I looked at all the white and all the solid colors and I thought “How am I ever ging to do this?”. My kids immediately asked “Dad, When do you think you will finish?”. They were all excited. I did some quick math and responded “In about 18 years, after you have kids”.

Even though I was pretty overwhelmed by the whole thing, I was on vacation and had some time, so I figured I’d give it a try. Since I had no expectation of finishing any time soon, I did not bother to track my progress. But on January 17th (less than a month later), I finished the first section (of 4,000 pieces)

Section E of 32,000 piece Puzzle

Section E

The puzzle is packaged into eight bags and each bag holds about 4,000 pieces. Each 4,000 piece bag creates a section of the puzzle with four panels in a 2×2 grid. Knowing this really helped. Rather than a single 32,000 piece puzzle, its really eight 4,000 piece puzzles. That’s a bit easier. Here is one of the bags

One Bag

One Bag

You can tell which bag is which section of the puzzle. The Puzzle Sections are each given a letter from A to H. A is in the upper left hand corner, then B, then C and D is in the upper right hand corner. E starts the next row in the lower left hand corner, then F, then G and H is in the lower right hand corner.

Each bag has a control number (in German: Kontrollnummer) and the first letter of the control number indicates the section of the puzzle contained therein. This bag holds section A

Control Number

Control Number (Kontrollnummer)

The Hall of fame for this puzzle is at http://www.largestpuzzle.com/. I hope I make it.

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