The blacksmiths

If a blacksmith requires five minutes to put on a horseshoe, can eight blacksmiths shoe 10 horses in less than half an hour?

The catch: A horse can stand on three legs, but not on two.

Project Management

10 comments for “The blacksmiths

  1. Mark Matis
    October 23, 2017 at 19:02

    No. It will take twenty minutes for all eight blacksmiths to shoe the first eight horses. And even though you have plenty of blacksmiths to spare, since the remaining two horses have to stand on at least three legs whilst they’re being shod, it will take another twenty minutes to shoe them as well. Forty minutes total minimum. But you can sure get a bunch of injured blacksmiths in that amount of time if them horses ain’t happy about how they’re being shod.

    Of course, that all changes if the smiths are only putting two shoes on each horse, as is sometimes done.

  2. October 23, 2017 at 20:08

    Hmm Do 8 front lefts then the remaining 2 front lefts plus 6 front rights. Etc?

    25 min?

    • Twisted Root
      October 23, 2017 at 23:51

      Yep, 25 min. As long as at the beginning of each 5 min round you shoe the horses with the least number of shoes first. After 4 rounds you will have two horses fully shod and eight horses with three shoes… or you could train the horses to lie on their back or use jet packs.

  3. Distant Relative
    October 23, 2017 at 20:14

    The French have a phrase “quatre pieds sur l’air”. If it was the horses, then yes, plenty of time! 🙂

  4. October 23, 2017 at 20:18

    Hover over the blank space at the end of the post, click and drag.

    • Mark Matis
      October 23, 2017 at 23:00

      ??? No workee for me in Chromium nor Chrome. Is that browser specific?

      • October 23, 2017 at 23:16

        Nor for me on the iPad but it did on the laptop. Now it’s in plain.

  5. Mudplugger
    October 23, 2017 at 20:31

    I suspect the Ferrari pit-crew would aim to manage it in about 2.5 seconds per nag, that’s less than half a minute for the lot.
    That leaves 29.5 minutes for combing their glossy hair and posing.

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