Puzzle rings come in many shapes and sizes, from simple two-band versions to nine-band rings. No matter how complicated they are, they all have solutions. The most important thing to remember is that you should not force anything on your ring. Forcing can result in bent bands, which ultimately make your ring unsolvable. With a little practice, you can solve any puzzle ring using the same principles, because there are two kinds of bands in any puzzle ring—inside and outside. Outside bands have an arc or curve shape to them, inside bands have a squiggle, generally forming one half of the X shape the two inside bands create when the puzzle is complete.
Two- or Three-Band Puzzle Rings
Two or three band puzzle rings usually need no instruction to solve. The pieces fit together naturally and assembling them is much more intuitive than larger puzzle rings.
Four-Band Puzzle Rings
First, locate the two inside bands. Separate these two bands from the rest. In the case of the four-band ring, there are two inside bands and two outside. Hold the ring so that the two inside bands are hanging down. Situate the outside bands so that they are bowing away from each other and then let all of them drop to the same side. With the squiggles facing down, the two inside bands should fit together to form a figure eight, with the outside bands running through the middle of this figure eight.
Once you have this configuration, rotate the outside bands one by one (figuring out which ones go first) and fit them so that they sit perfectly with the two inside bands. If at any time, your bands start to push each other apart or won’t sit together perfectly, undo your last step and try another outside band.
Six- and Eight-Band Puzzle Rings
The instructions to solve a four-band ring can be applied to almost any even-numbered puzzle ring of any size, including six and eight band rings. With larger rings, you still start with the two inside bands forming the figure eight. Figuring out the order of the outside rings generally takes a little more work, but usually the bands that form the outer edges of the curves go in first.
Odd Numbered Band Puzzle Rings
Odd numbered band puzzle rings also work on the same principles behind the four-band solution. For all of these, you still have inside bands and outside bands; but, in addition, you also have a U-shaped or somewhat straight band. Start with the inside bands forming a figure eight around the outwardly bowed bands. Rotate and fit in each outside band. The U-shaped band goes in last and should fit in quite easily.