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Topic: Video of me blockheading it up
Message: Posted by: NJJ (Oct 29, 2005 03:09AM)
Blockhead is a new addition to my act (and it gets great reactions)

http://www.funnybones.com.au/MOVIE0001.asf

However, I video myself performing and, frankly, I'm not hitting the nail hard enough! It feels to me like I'm driving a spike into my frontal lobe with the force and fury of thor but from the audiences POV it looks like a sparrow is gently massaging my nose with a hammer.

Any suggestions?
Message: Posted by: Kondini (Oct 29, 2005 03:19AM)
To get a good sound,,,,drive the nail in with the mike,,,,also tighten the grip on the nail to get a better forced entry!!! think that`s what I ment!!
Ken.
Message: Posted by: Stephon (Oct 29, 2005 12:03PM)
To kind or re-iterate and expand on what Ken said--since you're not actually hammering the nail in, but pushing it in with the fingers that are holding the nail (you are pushing it in with your fingers, aren't you?), then if you keep tight control of the nail, you came hit it with the hammer relatively hard.

The trick is to get the feel and the timing right so that you're still controlling the entry with you hand, and not accidentally really hammering it in. It took me some practice to get that right; I'm sure you'll get the hang of it.
Message: Posted by: NJJ (Oct 29, 2005 06:37PM)
The nail vibrates when I hit it. The harder I hit it, the more it vibrates.

I have tight control over the nail but I am more letting the hammer push it and letting it slide through my tight fingers.

Posted: Oct 31, 2005 5:57pm
Perhaps a smaller hammer?
Message: Posted by: TAIT (Oct 31, 2005 05:50PM)
I use a small claw hammer it gives me more control.
Message: Posted by: NJJ (Oct 31, 2005 10:55PM)
Cheers!

I found when performing today that the further it is in the hard I can hit.
Message: Posted by: Freak Prodigy (Nov 3, 2005 01:52PM)
I use a small hammer that I found at biglots, I know they have them at Lowes and Home Depot as well, I'm not sure what type of hammer it is but it resemples a railroad spike, it also makes a great sound.
Message: Posted by: Freak Prodigy (Nov 3, 2005 01:56PM)
http://www.lowes.com/lowes/lkn?action=productDetail&productId=126402-44675-1066943&lpage=none
that's a picture of it...It's called a Tack Hammer, and with it you can bash the hell out of your nail.
Message: Posted by: Stephon (Nov 3, 2005 04:14PM)
I used to use a tack hammer also. (I thought it looked cooler than a standard claw hammer). However, I was having troubles with removing the nail--the rear of the tack hammer didn't have a wide enough openning to easily slip the nail into it.

I recently started using a medium-size claw hammer, and am much more satisfied with the effect. The nail slips easily into the claw, and I can give the impression that I am using a lot of leverage to get the nail out.

Just my $0.02.
Message: Posted by: Harley Newman (Nov 3, 2005 06:55PM)
So use a tack hammer, and file the claw opening a bit wider
Message: Posted by: Stephon (Nov 3, 2005 07:21PM)
Yeah, I could do that, but I've found the curve of the claw hammer allows me to more convincingly "pry" the nail out of my nose. Plus, the added size and weight seem to add to the effect of the hammering. Also, the claw hammer opening goes from wide to narrow, and the tack is uniform in width. I could file it to the other shape, I suppose, but for me it's not worth the effort.

Thanks for the suggestion, tho.
Message: Posted by: Freak Prodigy (Nov 3, 2005 08:25PM)
I use the tack hammer, and usually let a middle aged woman pull the nail out. Or use a mini crow bar.
Message: Posted by: NJJ (Nov 4, 2005 05:25PM)
I went out and got a ladies claw hammer (sounds wimpy doesn't it). I can hit harder and it makes a nicer sound.

It looks like a tack hammer but with a bigger claw
Message: Posted by: Daniel Santos (Nov 9, 2005 05:38PM)
I also use a tack hammer and I hold the nail tight so that I can use a bit more force (as Kondini mentioned). In school, I get great reactions when I do it with a textbook or rolled-up paperback. I have one of the kids hold onto my wrist when I pull it out so they can feel my arm getting tense, making it seem like it's stuck in there good!

Good luck!



Dan
Message: Posted by: mindcontroller (Nov 12, 2005 02:27AM)
That's a blooming big hammer your using in that vid Nicholas LOL
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Nov 12, 2005 09:16AM)
Use the tack hammer to drive it in, and use a pry bar to rip it back out. Actually, the audience reaction says you were doing pretty good.
Message: Posted by: Mario Morris (Nov 13, 2005 12:28AM)
Stephon
I have all ways hammered it in not pushed it in with my fingers as you suggest.
Is there some danger in this I am not aware of?
Mario
Message: Posted by: NJJ (Nov 13, 2005 09:36PM)
Mario - There is a very small chance that if you do it the way we do that you will permantly...brain...hurt.....urg..............brf gfar gth . .......................
Message: Posted by: Stephon (Nov 13, 2005 10:31PM)
[quote]
On 2005-11-13 01:28, Mario Morris wrote:
Stephon
I have all ways hammered it in not pushed it in with my fingers as you suggest.
Is there some danger in this I am not aware of?
Mario
[/quote]It's an issue of control (and therefore, safety). If you're actually hammering, you don't have control over how the nail is going in. More chance for an accident.

For me, it's crucial, since I have to angle the nail downward a bit after I get about half way in.
Message: Posted by: Daniel Santos (Nov 15, 2005 05:21AM)
[quote]
On 2005-11-13 23:31, Stephon wrote:
For me, it's crucial, since I have to angle the nail downward a bit after I get about half way in.

[/quote]

That's the same for me, too. After I know I got passed that point, I know I'm safe to pick up the pace a bit to finish off.
Message: Posted by: Cadabra (Nov 15, 2005 10:50PM)
Hey, just saw your vid and the only thing I can think to say that has snot already been said is that you should hammer into your downstage nostril. By the looks of the video you are hammering into your upstage nostril...But also remember to pull out the nail with you upstage hand. The audience can see everything much more clearly when it is done this way.
Have Fun.
Albert Cadabra
Message: Posted by: Daniel Santos (Nov 16, 2005 05:51PM)
[quote]
On 2005-11-15 23:50, Cadabra wrote:
...that has snot already been said...

[/quote]



*punchline drum beat*
Message: Posted by: Slim Price (Nov 18, 2005 11:30AM)
Melvin Burkhart, the master of the act, used a small claw hammer, hitting it frequently, and stopped several times while doing it,and pattering all the while.
He'd finish by pulling the nail out with the claw,seeming to use great effort, and letting the nail fall to the floor, with a satisfying "clunk."
Before doing the nail driving, he'd apparently push an icepick into his neck.
Slim
Message: Posted by: joker 55 (Nov 21, 2005 01:49PM)
Is this a trick I have never heard of it as a whole thing of its own, just thought it was a little trick you could buy or whatever,
Message: Posted by: NJJ (Nov 21, 2005 02:09PM)
Joker55 - there is no 'trick' to it. It is a skill that requires a knowledge of biology, mime and safety. Talk to Slim if you are really interested.
Message: Posted by: Todd Robbins (Nov 21, 2005 02:44PM)
[quote]
On 2005-11-21 14:49, joker 55 wrote:
Is this a trick I have never heard of it as a whole thing of its own, just thought it was a little trick you could buy or whatever,
[/quote]

It's the 'whatever'.
Message: Posted by: markthorold (Dec 20, 2005 01:57AM)
Slims the man, thanks to his advice. I'm using it frequently to great reactions. I use an empty mineral bottle when playing close up at a table. The sound is great.
Regards Mark
Message: Posted by: Harley Newman (Dec 20, 2005 05:04AM)
The upstage/downstage problem is easily addressed by stopping in the middle for a one-liner, and turning to face a different part of the audience. In fact, you can stop as often as you'd like, as long as you have a way to support the stop.
Message: Posted by: Slim Price (Dec 20, 2005 03:10PM)
Harley's post sums up Mel's act perfectly!
Slim
Message: Posted by: Decomposed (Jan 17, 2006 01:42AM)
Now I need to break this back out........
Message: Posted by: joker 55 (Feb 8, 2006 09:37AM)
1 question...
does it hurt?
Message: Posted by: Todd Robbins (Feb 8, 2006 10:41AM)
[quote]
On 2006-02-08 10:37, joker 55 wrote:
1 question...
does it hurt?
[/quote]

Only your dignity and reputation.
Message: Posted by: Harley Newman (Feb 8, 2006 12:13PM)
Unless you make a mistake.
Message: Posted by: joker 55 (Feb 12, 2006 04:49PM)
Just a thought can this be done with a pencil?
Message: Posted by: Todd Robbins (Feb 12, 2006 05:17PM)
A pencil is too wide for most people.
Message: Posted by: Slim Price (Feb 12, 2006 08:39PM)
Does this mean no more drawings in my "atrium?"(I use 60p)
Slim
Message: Posted by: Todd Robbins (Feb 12, 2006 09:21PM)
Slim,
You will get more done once you get the lead out.

Todd
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Feb 13, 2006 09:33AM)
T'uther day, saw a new Framing Hammer at the tool store...it is a black wood handle and a bad ass business end and it is called the DEATH STICK. Large heavy and impressive (as most framing hammers are. I used to carry two of them in my belt when I had my sideshow museum out and about and carrying the days's money, especially in darkened parking lots...though mine were highly chromed and very visible. Never got bothered. Even the cops were impressed. :) )

Here's one of them: The Death Stick 'Dead-On' http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0009301HU/qid=1139844968/sr=1-20/ref=sr_1_20/102-9169999-3849762?%5Fencoding=UTF8&v=glance&n=228013

and other Death Stick stuff from dead On Tools...
http://www.amazon.com/gp/search/102-9169999-3849762?%5Fencoding=UTF8&search-alias=tools&field-brandtextbin=Dead%20On%20Tools
Message: Posted by: joker 55 (Feb 13, 2006 11:00AM)
So what is the average size nail to use?
Message: Posted by: TAIT (Feb 13, 2006 04:49PM)
The average size 4 or 5 Inch nail
Message: Posted by: joker 55 (Feb 14, 2006 10:50AM)
Ok, but I meant with,
Message: Posted by: NJJ (Feb 18, 2006 03:36PM)
[quote]
On 2006-02-12 17:49, joker 55 wrote:
Just a thought can this be done with a pencil?
[/quote]

There is an old children's tv character in oz called Mr Squiggle who has a pencil for a nose and who draw pictures with it. He is just a marionette and the puppeter REALLY draws the pictures.

http://www.abc.net.au/children/kidstv/shows/prog235.htm

I've always wanted to do an impersonation using a pencil inserted in my nose.

Pity its too thick!
Message: Posted by: Freak Prodigy (Feb 18, 2006 06:32PM)
Use a 20p nail,
that's what I and most other performers I know use.

brett
Message: Posted by: rickmorse (Mar 3, 2006 07:15PM)
[quote]
On 2005-11-18 12:30, sanscan wrote:
Melvin Burkhart, the master of the act, used a small claw hammer, hitting it frequently, and stopped several times while doing it,and pattering all the while.
He'd finish by pulling the nail out with the claw,seeming to use great effort, and letting the nail fall to the floor, with a satisfying "clunk."
Before doing the nail driving, he'd apparently push an icepick into his neck.
Slim


[/quote]

I was hoping someone would mention Melvin . . . one of the highlights of Todd Robbins's wedding for me (other than the I do's, that is) was meeting Melvin and seeing his act.
Message: Posted by: The Village Idiots (Mar 11, 2006 11:00AM)
I wear a headset microphone most of the time. A countryman as they are called. The great thing about this is as I am "hammering" I make a clicking sound with my mouth. Coming out of the speakers it sounds like the nail is being hammered into my thick head.