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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Finger/stage manipulation » » Tommy Wonder's Zombie (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Kent Wong
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Inner circle
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
2458 Posts

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Tommy Wonder designed a beautiful levitation system for a modified Zombie ball. The key purpose for the modification was to make the ball look more alive and to create the impression that it was not connected to the gimmick. Does anyone know if this levitation system was ever marketed comercially?

To be clear, I am not talking about the combined efforts of the Wonder/Losander zombie ball. That one is a further modification yet. The levitation system I am talking about is the one described in Books of Wonder and on Visions of Wonder. Thanks.

Kent
"Believing is Seeing"
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damien666
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canada
513 Posts

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Yes,
It was released, and it was of horrible quality. I got one and it arrived broken. I sent ot back and got another one which also arrived broken. I decided to fix it myself. Although it looked neat, it was noisy, expensive and not very well made.
I would not recommend it. It was sold by a magic dealer who is well known to sell fairly shoddy equipment.
Steven Steele
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Chief of Staff
Hesperia, California USA
1904 Posts

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Damien,

I don't know who built yours, but mine was built by Tommy Wonder himself (and it's the one described in the Books of Wonder). He built them when he had the time. Mine is beautiful and works like a charm. Since his passing, I don't know if anybody will be releasing them in the future.
Kent Wong
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Inner circle
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
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Do either of you remember how much the ball sold for?

Kent
"Believing is Seeing"
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andrew martin
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I think $300.
Steven Steele
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Chief of Staff
Hesperia, California USA
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I paid $250 from an estate sale, if memory serves me.
Dave Dorsett
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Macomb, Illinois
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On a related note...I've been wanting to try building one from the Books of Wonder but am having trouble sourcing a ball. Need something with a size of 6 to 10 inches, preferably in an acrylic. I know I have seen something like the glass garden balls in an acrylic material but can't find a marketer. Can anyone offer any help?
Dave Dorsett
Douglas~Wayne Illusioneering
Daniel Faith
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Neenah, Wisconsin
1526 Posts

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Jeb Sherril here on the Café created a new Zombie Gimmick that I am currently preparing a review of. Very clever device and I like it better than the Wonder Gimmick, although the Wonder Gimmick was very good, indeed.
Daniel Faith
Ron Reid
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Phoenix, Arizona
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I remember the full page ads that Tommy Wonder had on the back covers of MAGIC magazine. I think the ads stated that the reason he was selling his floating ball system was because some other dealer has stolen his idea and method and was selling an inferior product.

Damien, it sounds like you may have bought that version.

Ron
Jeb Sherrill
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Elsewhere
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I'm afraid that's the way I remember it as well. It's a very clever gimmick, but anyone who bought the knock-off was sadly disapointed. If you have one, hold on to it. It's a "wonderful" item. No pun intended. Tommy was a master craftsman and a marvelous inventor. I do hope my gimmick can hold a candle. Thanks for the vote Daniel.

Jeb
I don't believe in reincarnation, but I may have in another life.
David Todd
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1659 Posts

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Quote:
On 2006-08-22 13:21, damien666 wrote:
Yes,
It was released - and it was of horrible quality. I got one and it arrived broken. I sent ot back and got another one which also arrived broken. I decided to fix it myself.. Although it looked neat; it was noisy, expensive and not very well made.
I would not recommend it. It was sold by a magic dealer who is well known to sell fairly shoddy equipment.


Damien, as others have pointed out above, I think you must have purchased one of the knock-off versions. Tommy Wonder never released anything that was poorly made, so I would be very surprised if the one you purchased was made or authorized by him.

A few years ago Tommy Wonder custom-made for me his "levitation system" to fit my floating bowling ball. I was always grateful to Tommy Wonder for taking the time out to make the gimmick for me and to be willing to help me out by selling me the gimmick as stand alone item, without requiring me to purchase the ball and cloth (which I did not need). Many busy people would have simply said : "You can buy that item from such-and-such a dealer. Have a nice day." or "Sorry it's sold out. Not sure when we'll make another run", but he was kind enough to help me realize my version of his wonderful levitation system. (And he didn't charge me an arm and a leg to do the work , either. Very reasonable cost.)

A great magician and a true gentleman . He will be greatly missed . I am so thankful that we have his books and the videos.

Just in case anyone's missed it previously , someone has posted a clip of Tommy performing his stage act at the World Magic Awards on YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFqLvPaQOsQ
David Todd
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Quote:
On 2006-08-23 12:03, Dave Dorsett wrote:
On a related note...I've been wanting to try building one from the Books of Wonder but am having trouble sourcing a ball. Need something with a size of 6 to 10 inches, preferably in an acrylic. I know I have seen something like the glass garden balls in an acrylic material but can't find a marketer. Can anyone offer any help?


Dave ,
Take a look here :

http://www.barnardltd.com/.query.listall......-Spheres

Scroll down to the item PLASTIC BALL 6 IN.
Category:_-Spheres
Product Code: 10115

6 inches in diameter and comes in two pieces. Colors come in red, green, gold , silver or blue. Please state color choice when ordering. 30 gauge PVC. Note there is a lip around the ball where the two pieces connect.

The only disadvantage to this item is that each half of the sphere has a "lip" around it that must be carefully trimmed off around the edges with very sharp shears, so that the halves can be cemented together after you did the necessary work to make the Wonder zombie. If you are very careful it can be done , because I've done it.
The other thing to use are a few small, discreetly placed pieces of metallic tape (same color as the ball, silver or gold) to hold the two halves together. From stage distance the small pieces of tape are not noticeable . Make sure the edges of the tape are pressed down smooth , so they don't catch on the cloth used during performance of zombie. Also, you should tape the two halves of the sphere from the inside before you close it up. You can get a pretty good sized piece of clear scotch tape or the metallic tape attached along one side of the inside of the sphere before you close the two halves of the sphere. (hope that makes sense... if you do it you'll see what I mean.) The tape on the inside strengthens the ball a bit .

This company, Barnard Ltd., also occationally stocks plastic Christmas tree ornaments (hollow spheres), in large sizes ranging from 5" inches to 8" inches. Check with them and see what they may have in stock even if it's not currently listed on their website.
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