Author Archives: Dutch

Toughie 1859

Toughie No 1859 by Notabilis

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***/****Enjoyment *****

A stunningly good puzzle from Notabilis showing some very tidy cluemanship and trademark precision. I enjoyed this immensely. It took me 3* time to complete the grid, but it took a little longer before I had the full parsing for 17a, 19a, and 4d.… Read More

Toughie 1855

Toughie No 1855 by Sparks

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***/****

I enjoyed this, though I didn’t know who the setter was at the time of solving (thanks CS for filling me in). In retrospect, I might have guessed.… Read More

Toughie 1851

Toughie No 1851 by proXimal

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***/****

Thankfully a not-over-the-top-difficult puzzle from proXimal. My top half seemed to go in fairly smoothly, then I slowed down considerably as I sank towards the bottom. I still managed to finish in just over what is 3* time for me, with several smiles along the way.… Read More

Toughie 1847

Toughie No 1847 by Elgar

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty *****Enjoyment *****

Another corker from Elgar. This is his 119th Toughie puzzle, and the 15-letter Nina relates to that. I was worried at first when I spent ‘some time’ staring at the grid getting nowhere.… Read More

Toughie 1843

Toughie No 1843 by Elkamere

        Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

How delightful to have an Elkamere puzzle on the day his Macclesfield S&B crossword meeting kicks off. I found today’s puzzle somewhat trickier than his last few, but I still managed to complete it in what for me is 3* difficulty time.… Read More

Toughie 1839

Toughie No 1839 by Notabilis

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

Another elegant puzzle by Notabilis with fun wordplay, lovely indications and clever definitions. I managed to finish it before the school run though I only saw the parsing of 4d several hours later.… Read More

Toughie 1831

 

Toughie No 1831 by proXimal

Hints and tips by Dutch

 

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

I did feel a little panic when I saw the setter’s name but happily I managed to do this before the school run this morning, within 3* difficulty time.… Read More

Toughie 1827

Toughie No 1827 by Elkamere

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment *****

 

I was a bit pre-occupied with the elections and can’t remember exactly how long this took me to solve, I think roughly 3* difficulty. I do remember I found it massively enjoyable, as usual for an Elkamere.… Read More

Toughie 1819

Toughie No 1819 by Elgar

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment *****

A slightly gentler offering from Elgar with a few easier clues to give you a foothold – so do 19d. This is Elgar’s 118th toughie, and there is an appropriate Nina.… Read More

Toughie 1815

Toughie No 1815 by Osmosis

Hints and tips by Dutch

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

A solid toughie from Osmosis with intricate clueing and some lovely surfaces. After yesterday’s proXimal, I was relieved to finish with 3* difficulty time. I somehow managed this relatively tidily, doing each quadrant in turn clockwise from NW to SW, giving the illusion of control.… Read More