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Topic: Sword Basket by Andrew Mayne
Message: Posted by: TheMagicOfDean (Dec 1, 2010 08:01AM)
Hello guys,

This is Dean. Has anyone bought Andrew's Sword Basket Illusion?
I would like to know if it is worth the buy, Thanks!

Dean Wong
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 1, 2010 08:57AM)
He released it yesterday I believe... so I doubt anyone has it yet.
Message: Posted by: Kyle^Ravin (Dec 1, 2010 09:32AM)
Dean... getting into illusions I see... Study them well... and work hard. Don't move into illusions too fast. There are loads of things you need to consider first buddy! You'll know when you're ready. You've got loads of potential. Work hard and I know you'll shine!
Message: Posted by: M Sini (Dec 1, 2010 11:01AM)
It looks a lot like the Jim Summers sword basket.
Message: Posted by: EsnRedshirt (Dec 1, 2010 11:56AM)
Based on the pictures, it looks cheaply made (of course, given its price.) I don't know how well it would weather multiple performances, but on the bright side, it also looks like the parts are easily replacable if they fall apart.

There is a market for illusions that make people say, "Wow, look what he can do with just cardboard!" However, it really has to fit your performance persona or you'll just end up looking unprofessional.
Message: Posted by: Falconer (Dec 1, 2010 12:13PM)
Despite being made with cheap materials, have a good look. I liked most of the partner!

Message: Posted by: Alan Munro (Dec 1, 2010 12:20PM)
I've worked with Coroplast containers, and without a solid framework, it could be pretty flimsy. Normally, containers like that are spot welded together to give it more rigidity. But, this thing is laced, so I'd be concerned about the laces ripping the holes, if the assistant accidentally sat on the rim. Velcro might have been a better choice than laces, because it could be reassembled quickly if it collapsed.

Coroplast is only a corrugated plastic, so you'd want to protect it in transit so that it won't look like a beat-up shipping container. The price is right and it may suit some performers.
Message: Posted by: illusionman2 (Dec 1, 2010 01:24PM)
I wish he sold plans for this for around $20 bucks as I would like to buy and build out of wood.
Message: Posted by: Alan Munro (Dec 1, 2010 02:05PM)
On 2010-12-01 14:24, illusionman2 wrote:
I wish he sold plans for this for around $20 bucks as I would like to buy and build out of wood.
That's a great idea! It would make the sword basket something customizable for illusionists on a budget. It would also be great if the swords were sold separately, for use with other makes of baskets.
Message: Posted by: LeeAlex2002 (Dec 1, 2010 02:51PM)
I wonder why there is no performance video of this, only photos?
Message: Posted by: aboycemagic (Dec 1, 2010 02:53PM)
I like how the swords look, but the basket itself looks... ehh. So maybe we could put word in for him selling the swords and plans like illusionman2 said.
Message: Posted by: Chezaday (Dec 1, 2010 03:22PM)
Too funny ..

An interesting concept .. of course sex sells. Is the little school girl outfit included?

Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 1, 2010 04:52PM)
If the outfit is included, I'll take two ;)
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 1, 2010 04:59PM)
Actually, honestly, I like the way it looks. I have a few illusions, do four or five illusion shows a year is all. I'll probably order one, and if so, will give a fair review.
Message: Posted by: Lou Hilario (Dec 1, 2010 06:07PM)
It says a 6feet 2 inches guy can fit in. Wow, this must be a large one and not deceptive at all.
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 1, 2010 06:11PM)
Based on the pictures Lou it is a rectangle... so I imagine the short ends face your audience.

The last sword basket I saw was one that was made to hold two women - the performer didn't produce a second lady, but the audience seemed to enjoy it anyway... and he was possibly the worst magician (no joke) to ever roll through the area.

But you may be right!
Message: Posted by: ssucahyo (Dec 1, 2010 07:00PM)
I believe his Voodoo Box is much better than this Hindoo Basket version.
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 1, 2010 08:17PM)
I ordered it. I'll let you guys know how it is.
Message: Posted by: Aaron Smith Magic (Dec 4, 2010 09:24PM)
Would definitely be interested in hearing about it once you get it magicelam.
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 5, 2010 04:55PM)
It will probably be around christmas ime before I get to play with it, but I'll let you know.
Message: Posted by: TheAmazingLuke (Dec 5, 2010 05:18PM)
Don't do it Dean!!!
Message: Posted by: LeeAlex2002 (Dec 5, 2010 05:30PM)
On 2010-12-01 19:07, Lou Hilario wrote:
It says a 6feet 2 inches guy can fit in. Wow, this must be a large one and not deceptive at all.

I think I am 6 foot 2 also (1.88m) and I fit into the wicker basket that Peter Diamond (UK) made - it is extremely deceptive and one of the smallest baskets I have seen (I have a picture somewhere).
A fellow magician however who is 1.74m cannot even fit half way into the same basket - he is not big, but simply not agile enough to fit into the opening. It was a funny picture to see him running around with the basket stuck to his rear end!!

The question I have with Andrew's "basket" is the durability of the material used - I am familiar with Coroplast and the slightest bend or nick leaves an irreversible visible "crack" (white line) despite the original colour of the material. The flaps where the swords poke out will take a battering for sure, so I would be curious of the life span of this "basket".

As far as looks go, this looks modern and suited to a night club atmosphere performed by a young magician. I guess black makes it look smaller than it actually is? I prefer the look of this to some of the fibre glass or other "non-wicker" versions out there, but for me a basket is a basket is a basket, and the simplicity of the original wicker cannot be beaten.
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 5, 2010 07:36PM)
Lee, you should make a color changing basket... Haha.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Dec 6, 2010 05:51PM)
Aren't there plans for the basket somewhere?

Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 6, 2010 06:21PM)
I got an e-mail from Andrew today that said this would go up to 299 in three days...
Message: Posted by: donrodrigo (Dec 7, 2010 12:16AM)
My 2 cents:

As with the victory: Many of these ideas came about the need to reach the young-no wallet performer for a backyard show.
Ideas that as pointed out could be fabricated with more resistance. Performance value? Well, use your good sense. "YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR"
Message: Posted by: TheMagicOfDean (Dec 7, 2010 06:49AM)
On 2010-12-07 01:16, donrodrigo wrote:
My 2 cents:

As with the victory: Many of these ideas came about the need to reach the young-no wallet performer for a backyard show.
Ideas that as pointed out could be fabricated with more resistance. Performance value? Well, use your good sense. "YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR"

I agree with you, You get what you pay for.
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 13, 2010 05:42PM)
Hey, I just got this in. I have not assembled it, but I took everything out of the box just to make sure it was in good condition - and it was.

It comes with a DVD I have not watched, and probably won't until after Christmas - just won't have time. But here are the first impressions of what I got.

The coroplast is more heavy duty than I have ever seen - that's not saying a lot, I've seen a minimal amount of coroplast. Or maybe I just can't tell the difference. It is precut and folded, and has velcro already on it - I know someone said above it'd work better with velcro, so, now you know, it has velcro.

The swords are machined blades (not sharp) and seperate PVC handles covered in a nice red tape. The blades are held in the handles by two screws. The blades are not the same length, and two have small marks on the bottom, so I guess this is with a reason.

There are not the lace-up holes on the illusion like in the pictures, but it does come with the red string - I guess this is optional. I'll do it 'cause I like the way it looks - and because we have a red bryce's screen we'll use with this, so they'll match.

All and all, I think I'm gonna be really happy with it. I don't know if it'd be strong enough to withstand the rigors of someone touring with it year round, but we do 10-12 illusion shows a year, so I think it'll be perfect for us.

Also, for those wanting plans, you can look at this and make one from a different material no problem.

Once I have mine together and ready (which'll be after Christmas, maybe New Years) I'll give a more solid review.

They're still available from his website for $299
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 13, 2010 07:11PM)
Okay, so I just assembled mine for fun. Threw it together quick, worked like a charm. If you're performing it though you'd wanna take a little time to line it up correctly. Entire illusion sets up in probably 2-3 minutes.
Message: Posted by: M Sini (Dec 14, 2010 08:10AM)
On 2010-12-06 18:51, JamesinLA wrote:
Aren't there plans for the basket somewhere?


There are plans to one that looks very similar in Jim Sommers, Build Your Own Illusions.
Message: Posted by: illusionman2 (Dec 14, 2010 11:17AM)
On 2010-12-14 09:10, M Sini wrote:
On 2010-12-06 18:51, JamesinLA wrote:
Aren't there plans for the basket somewhere?


There are plans to one that looks very similar in Jim Sommers, Build Your Own


The one in Jim's book is cloth holding it's shape with a metal suports on the inside ( like the one on Tony Hassini VSH tape). the one Andrerw has is more close to the Ralph Adams' basket (page 50 of his book).
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Dec 20, 2010 05:46AM)
I think the design looks like the Ralph Adams Sword Basket, same shape and angles.

This is a nice by for only $200.00. I think if anyone is really worried about it falling apart, it could always be lined with fiberglas material on the inside.

Will the material take paint, it would be nice to make it look more like a basket.
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 20, 2010 05:57AM)
Wmhegbli, I'm not sure if it will or not - it certainly doesn't "feel" like it would, but I could be wrong.
Message: Posted by: SpellbinderEntertainment (Dec 20, 2010 11:16AM)
What no one has brought up what the #%^(*!#$ is it supposed to be.
To a magician it looks like a "Sword Basket"
but an audience (not sharing our inside view) does not know that!

It is a very, very foreign looking object to a Muggle normal person.
Neither fish nor fowl, it does not look like a "basket" maybe an alien space ship?
This is a danger in illusions, if it looks too strange it screams "trick"
and they spectators therefore look for a "method"
rather than looking at it as a magical experience.

I had the Sommers model custom made years ago,
it looks like what I say it is:
A Barbary Coast Chinatown Hamper used for Shanghai and white trade.
IF one can come up with a plausible theme and justification this could work.
But, right now it just looks like another "magician's trick box"
And being small and cheap looking does not have the impressive cache of say a
Modern Art, which is supposed to be something: Modern Art!

Taking all that into consideration before you buy this.
Coroplast is about 25% more sturdy than corrugated cardboard,
with any travel or much use, it's going to age and go south pretty quickly.

Nice concept, practical no, and not an "ordinary object" which the real basket is,
perhaps from India or Pier One, but realistic looking just the same.

My thoughts on this anyway, funny it has not been brought up until now.
Two Cents Walt
Message: Posted by: AmazingEARL (Dec 20, 2010 04:25PM)
Unless you've had it fluorinated, even those plastic paints won't bond well to run-of-the-mill coroplast. Some solvent based plastisol inks (think silk screen inks) will work, but (I think) must be cured with UV light.

If the surface is cleaned well, self adhesives work pretty good on coroplast. Woodgrain-patterned ConTact Paper cut into narrow strips might help suggest a wicker basket.

Message: Posted by: magicmarkdaniel (Dec 20, 2010 04:57PM)
Wmhegbli. with regards to it taking paint, it probably wouldn't. However you could use sign makers vinyl or Fablon or anything like that to cover it. Vinyl is pretty tough too so will withstand scratches etc. It can also be digitally cut to any design and applied pretty easily.

Regarding plans, I just emailed Andrew. He said there's none available at the moment but in the near future...

Message: Posted by: crochow (Dec 21, 2010 01:23AM)
Ummmmmmmm. basket looks pretty 'shoddy'... barely resembles a basket. The material appears to be what you can get at a sign supply shop, it's a corrugated plastic... a 4x8' sheet runs about $12.00. You do the math, make one yourself. Swords looks like a child's toy. Not very 'threatening'. I'd pass on this "illusion".

I just sold my real sword basket a couple weeks ago,. Real woven stuff. See Ron Alesi if you want it. I think he might still have it. Custom made swords go with it too.
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 24, 2010 09:11AM)
Crochow, I have it, and can assure you it is not shoddy. And it looks like a black basket in person.
Message: Posted by: flight10 (Dec 24, 2010 04:38PM)
Its a $200 illusion. Packs small and plays big. What more can you want.
Message: Posted by: w_s_anderson (Dec 24, 2010 07:00PM)
I had sent Andrew Mayne an email when I was in Iraq about an event we were putting on and I needed an easy to build prop. He sent me what I was asking for, as well as extra illusion plans free of charge...just in case one didn't work out! Talk about a nice guy!
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 24, 2010 11:13PM)
Yeah, he's been really cool to me as well. We use his Spectre Cabinet, and have made his VooDoo box, although the sword basket will be replacing that.

And I'm very happy with the sword basket.
Message: Posted by: MagicErik (Dec 28, 2010 02:43AM)
According to his site it is sold out.. :D
Not everybody wants to be able to afford an original Gaughan or Summers. Maybe you don't like it, but for the many magicians who perform maybe 5 times a year this really is a great prop. It looks cheap because it is. Not everyone wants to be able to afford original Gaughan or Summers illusions. They would never earn that kind of money back. So maybe you wouldn't perform with it because you are at a much higher level. Others do and in my opinion stating that they are stupid buying this 'junk' does not do them any justice. Maybe you don't like it. For the money you pay you seem to be getting a prop that will most likely not survive in an everynight touring magicshow. But for the maybe once per month magician I think it will work great. And I think that was Mayne's intention.
Message: Posted by: magicelam (Dec 28, 2010 09:42AM)
Well said MagicEric
Message: Posted by: kennewhitson (Jun 16, 2011 01:51PM)
Thanks for all the input. I was considering buying the just released plans and you guys have sealed the deal for me, it's a GO! Andrew just released the plans and he is GREAT to deal with s I'm ordering.
Message: Posted by: TheMagicOfDean (Jun 18, 2011 06:16AM)
Hi all,

Andrew had just release plans on building this Sword Basket. Check it out at
Ebook: http://andrewmayne.com/shop/products-page/downloads/sword-basket-download/
Print Version: http://andrewmayne.com/shop/products-page/books/sword-basket/

The website says:

"Andrew Mayne presents his revolutionary design for the Sword Basket illusion: Compact, lightweight and easy to build.

This digital download includes:
+ PDF booklet with precise measurements
+ Printer-friendly blueprints
+ Instructions on how to build Andrew's large stage swords
+ 14-minute video explaining how to assemble and perform one of the world's most popular illusions.

Total cost to build is under $50.

16-page PDF booklet / Printer-friendly diagrams in PDF form / 14-minute video in MP4 format"

Message: Posted by: magicelam (Jun 23, 2011 09:52AM)
Hey, just so you guys will know, I've only used mine a few times, but it plays great and has held together well. I have not added the holes for laces. We had a local college student write an intro on what the basket "was", and it goes over well too. Hope this helps. I don't really get on here much anymore, so if you have any questions about the basket, drop me a pm, and I'll see if I can help.
Message: Posted by: kennewhitson (Jun 28, 2011 07:12PM)
Bought the download and it is great. The PDF is clearly written and the video is straight forward.Another winner from Andrew.
Message: Posted by: Brian Arkell (Aug 3, 2011 08:03PM)
I own this and it is a good prop for the low price!

packs small plays BIG!


Brian Arkell
Arkell Magic
Message: Posted by: asgar (Jul 25, 2013 02:04PM)
I want to build a sword busket and I know some good weavers here.Will this design help or there is an other easier way ?
Message: Posted by: wizmaster (Sep 5, 2013 11:50AM)
I bought it a month or two ago and I will build mine in plywood... Think it looks very small and deceptive...