Hervey Bay's Allan Sellke has a big addiction to big puzzles, especially after finishing the world's biggest commercially available jigsaw puzzle.
Hervey Bay's Allan Sellke has a big addiction to big puzzles, especially after finishing the world's biggest commercially available jigsaw puzzle. Alistair Brightman

Huge jigsaw gives 'inner-piece'

LOSING a piece could have sent him insane.

Lucky for Allan Sellke all 24,000 pieces of his jigsaw were accounted for and are now safely framed.

The 65-year-old Hervey Bay retiree was up for a challenge so he took on the world's largest commercially available jigsaw puzzle - Life: the Great Challenge.

Created by artist Royce B. McLure by merging 30 of his original paintings, the puzzle was released in March 2007.

The puzzle's 12kg box holds four 6000-piece bags.

It can be put together in sections or by mixing the pieces and putting the 4.28m by 1.57m giant together as a whole.

“If you do it in sections you're cheating, so I opened the bags and and then sorted the same coloured pieces into 16 different boxes,” Mr Sellke said.

“The whole thing took 532 hours over five months.”

After completing an 18,000-piece puzzle and a 13,500-piece puzzle, Mr Sellke could be classed as a puzzle expert.

“There's always a code in a jigsaw puzzle,” he said.

“In this one, if you count 37 pieces across and then 28 pieces down, you get the same shape.”

Mr Sellke was planning on hanging the finished piece in his hallway but realised it was a foot too long, so now it's in his garage.

“There's no wall in the house big enough to hang it on.

“I thought I might donate it to an organisation to display it.

“Once you've done it and it's glued you can't use it for anything else.”



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