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Brain Teaser for the Frontal Lobes: Tipping the Scales

Here is a new brain teas­er from puz­zle mas­ter Wes Car­roll.

Tip­ping the Scales

free brain teasers for frontal lobes

The top two scales are in per­fect bal­ance. How many dia­monds will be need­ed to bal­ance the bot­tom set?

This puz­zle works your exec­u­tive func­tions in your frontal lobes by using your pat­tern recog­ni­tion, hypoth­e­sis test­ing, and log­ic.

Four dia­monds


First add up the num­ber of clubs in the first two scales (5). Then count how many clubs are in the bot­tom scale (5). The do the same with the spades, which gets you 5 and 5. There are 4 dia­monds in the top two bal­anced scales. There­fore, it must take 4 dia­monds to bal­ance the third scale since all the oth­er mea­sure­ments are the same.


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18 Responses

  1. Jonathan says:

    How about if we just add spades to the right?

  2. Caroline says:

    Count­ing the num­ber of spades is part of it, but you have to know the pro­por­tion of spades, clubs, and dia­monds to each oth­er to solve the prob­lem.

  3. Amber says:

    This is easy if you aren’t over­ly smart, you just count the items and add. If you use high­er math­e­mat­ics, it’s prob­a­bly more dif­fi­cult.

  4. Jonathan says:

    I agree with Amber. If we only add more spades, we’ll need some frac­tions.

  5. Caroline says:

    Aside from the frac­tions, the ques­tion asks “How many dia­monds will be need­ed to bal­ance the bot­tom set?”. So you have to add dia­monds not spades.

  6. Amber says:

    What you see on the first two bal­ance scales is all you have to deal with, just use ’em all up and you can’t go wrong.

  7. kevin says:

    a culb is worth 7 points, a spade 3 and a dia­mond 5, now do the math!

  8. david says:

    Need 4 more Dia­monds!

    Try to add scale #1 plus scale #2 togeth­er…


  9. NIcholas says:

    its 4 dia­monds i belive look at the top one theres 1 dia­mond and 3 spades= 2 clubs so take three spades out of the bot­tom scale and take 2 clubs out and add a dia­mond. now theres 3 clubs and 2 spades on the bot­tom scale now look at the mid­dle scale its 3 dia­mond­sand 2 spades = 3 clubs u already have the beg­gin­ing of that on the bot­tom scale now, just add 3 dia­monds and its bal­anced, so in order to bal­ance the bot­tom scale (with out take­ing any­thing off) you need 4 dia­monds

  10. Matty says:

    I used a series of for­mu­las with three vari­ables and came up with 4 dia­monds. How­ev­er, just adding the scales prob­a­bly would have worked haha­ha.
    Great work, David.

  11. Mitch says:

    I did the same as david and just added scales 1 and 2. No need for for­mu­las lol.

    4 dia­monds 🙂

  12. Lmnop says:

    Dan­git. Again, I went the long way. Oh well, at least I got to prac­tice my alge­bra. Haven’t used that in a while.

  13. Samir says:

    I too used high­er alge­bra to solve the prob­lem. I got the cor­rect answer but it took way too long. I won­der why I did­n’t think of the short method in the begin­ning.

  14. allstar says:

    4! i did it the long way >

  15. Audrey says:

    4. That was easy… they give you the solu­tion for 3 clubs and for 2 clubs, all you had to do was add. It was even nice enough to give you the right num­ber of spades.

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