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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Polly wants a cracker... » » Balloon to Dove - Pop Barehanded? (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Vinnie Laraway
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Hey guys...

We have all seen the performer blow up a balloon (or use the balloon from a previous trick), and then take out a sharp object (needle in the case of doing the needle through balloon beforehand, knife, etc.) and pop the balloon, and a dove appears...

BUT does anyone have any ideas of how to make the balloon pop in your hands without the use of any sharp object like a knife or anything?

I'm sure you could have a thumbtack on you finger or on your body somewhere and use that to pop it, but that would look a little strange bringing it so close to your body, and impracticle do do your act with a thumbtack on finger...

Dan Birch does just the balloon pop with his 'mind' in this clip: http://youtube.com/watch?v=ZXq_703q_L0 (3:35)... Whatever he used could, I guess, be applied with a dove production, so any help?

Any thoughts would be great!
-Vinnie
Spellbinder
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I used to use a thumbtip with a sharp grain of obsidian glued to the tip. Obsidian is a black volcanic glassy rock. I supposed you could use a bit of glass, but it's hard to get a small piece or ordinary glass that won't break off further- obsidian is much tougher than glass. The obsidian would not cut my skin if I accidentally rubbed against it, but rubbing it on the balloon caused it to pop 100% of the time.

The other solution is to put a thumbtack into the tied endpiece of the balloon and glue it there with a bit of quick drying contact cement. Just bend the balloon back and push it into the tack, or vice versa. Make sure you don't leave that end piece of balloon lying around on the floor where someone might step on it.
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Dave Scribner
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Vinnie, Dan burst two ballons with his mind??? in this clip. In the first, he walked from the "stars" of the show to the box and held up the balloon, which he burst. Watch his left hand as he walks across the stage to the balloon and then again, after the balloon breaks.

In the second, where he breaks the inner balloon with his "mind", there is a very old topic in this forum that explains how that is possible. I'll see if I can find it but I believe it's several years old so it may take awhile. I believe the final outcome of the topic was that the method was not entirely safe and for that reason, I don't think you'd want to use a dove with it.

I'll send you a PM as I don't want to expose anything here.
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Vinnie Laraway
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Thanks for the help guys!

Anyone else have any ideas of how to d this, preferably without a TT of anything that could potentially poke the dove?

Thanks
-Vinnie
g0thike
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Vinnie,

I have been to Dan's house and have seen him perform that effect, their is some strong magic happening that blows up the ballon. It will be fatal to the dove, also notice Dan is standing a safe distance from the prop.

G0THIKE
Vinnie Laraway
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Thanks G0thike! Dave informed me of the same thing, and that it would be bad for the dove to come in contact with...

But I'm a bit confused... The first pop where he was holding it looked as though he was just wearing a TT with something sharp at the end of it... Are you saying this pop used the same method as the double ballon pop?


Thanks
-Vinnie
Tod Todson
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If memory serves me, you can dab a certain household product on a balloon and it will pop. Perhaps could be stolen from a sponge in your magic table. I can't remember the name of the product though. It's something that quickly "melts" the balloon though. Maybe someone else knows what I'm talking about.
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Dave Scribner
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And would you want any of this stuff to come in contact with your dove? That's why we are saying it's unsafe for dove work.
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mattsharpe
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One thing I've done to pop the balloon in a flashy way is flash paper. This done with a balloon to rabbit box, but the idea is the same. All I do is put a little piece of tape on the balloon, and put a balled-up piece of flash paper on the tape, keep it on the back of hte balloon. Haul out a match, light the paper and suddenly there is a burst of fire at the same time a balloon pops and your animal appears.

I do this with the long 260 balloons obviously so my rabbit would never be close to the flash paper. If you wanted to go the other way(opposed to discrete), this works for me and kids often remember it. "There was a ball of fire, and the balloon popped, and there was a rabbit where it was!"
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Dynamike
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Vinnie, you should try the "Vanish" method. All you will need is a safety pen, two inches of thread, a sewing needle and the "you know what." After the blown up balloon is tied into a knot, steal the needle from the area of where the loops are hidden. After popping the balloon, let go of the needle so it will retract the opposite area of the dove so they will not make any contact. You can also use a TT with the "Vanish" method. If you do use the "Vanish" method with this operation I would recommend to use the j****t and not the s***e.

Dynamike
Vinnie Laraway
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Heh, thanks for the idea, Mike! I don't know... I think that would be plausable, but just a little out of the way, and I may not find exactly where the needle is when I reach in, and theres a chance I can poke myself - because I cant see where the needle is...

I like Matt's idea with the taped on Flash Paper! That could look really cool!

I've been experimenting with a simple thumb tack pushed through the tip of the TT, and it works great, BUT theres alway that danger of poking the dove, and also you have to get the TT on and ditch it after...

Hmmm - any other ideas? =]
-Vinnie
Dave Scribner
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Vinnie, you don't need much of tack to break the balloon. Just make it protrude a little bit. It should be easy to get the tt with a little misdirection. Depending on how you steal the dove, the tt shouldn't come in contact with the dove anyway so I wouldn't worry about sticking it. Getting rid of the tt should be easier that getting it. With the misdirection of the dove, you should have plenty of time to ditch it.
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Kyle^Ravin
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This could be an idea Vinnie, attach the thumbtack to the blowing end of the balloon. you could blow the balloon on stage very carefully or have a pre blown balloon. I guess, you can pop the balloon this way. it could be done one handed. never tried this... lemme knw if this works.
Vinnie Laraway
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Thanks Dave! Yeah, I know that could work, but I just want to see if anyone would have ideas of how to do this without anything sharp... I just want people go get creative. =]

-Vinnie
Kyle^Ravin
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Tricky eh...
Tod Todson
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Yeah, perhaps not want in contact with my dove.

I think the product is Goop by the way. Stuff that takes off price tags.

Would I want a pin size amount of Goop to touch my bird though, or a sharp tack?

I don't know which would be the lesser of two evils.

Can't birds bleed to death fairly quickly?
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Dave Scribner
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I think we might be getting carried away with this idea. The head of a tack is pushed through a tt, it only needs to protrude enough to touch the balloon. Now, you will be producing the bird with an IDH and your thumb really shouldn't be coming in contact with the bird. Even if it does for a second, it won't be enough to cut your dove or cause it to bleed.

Yes, a dove doesn't have much blood and it can bleed out quickly IF the injured area is large enough and the cut is unattended. Touching a bird with the tip of a tack will produce a lot less of an injury than when you cut it's nails and hit the blood line. That is probably the biggest loss of blood area you'll run into and you have plenty of time to fix that. A few years ago, I loaded one of my doves in a prop and it managed to get it's foot turned up against it's head. He scratched himself enough to bleed from the head and was in the prop for about 15 minutes before being produced. I was devistated and couldn't wait to get to a vet about 30 minutes later. He was fine although it took awhile to get the blood off his feathers. That was extreme but I'm trying to show that we're not talking about seconds here.

I'm all for protecting the little guys and being careful but you can't "walk on eggs" everytime you handle them. Hiding a tack in the neck of a balloon would be a lot more risky to the dove that having a tip of a tack in a tt. If you use the tt, you have to be careful not to prematurely bring the tack in contact with the balloon and you just have to show the same caution when producing the bird.
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mattsharpe
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One more thing about the tack on the balloon. When the tack pops the balloon, there's a chance that that tack could go flying with the pieces of latex it's attached to. It wouldn't do any harm to anyone, but it probably wouldn't look good if sharp objects are being hurled towards your audience.

Personally, for what I do the flash paper works quite well. You pop the balloon 100% of the time and it's a showy production. However, the tack in the TT would likely also work well, but you'd have to spend a lot of time working with the TT before handling the bird, to ensure you don't forget about the tack(I'm sure it could happen easily if you're unaccustomed to it).
Matt
Dave Scribner
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Matt, good point but to your last comment, if you're unaccustomed to doing the effect, you shouldn't be performing it for an audience. I think the handling of the dove while wearing the tt depends on what the routine is. If you are going to burst the balloon and produce the dove with the same hand, the bird should be perching on your index finger and not be anywhere near the thumb which eliminates the problem. You could always produce the bird and transfer it to the other hand which you would probably have to do anyway in order to ditch the tt.

How about holding the balloon with one hand, getting the tt on the other and grasping the loop. Now as you approach the balloon to pop it, you do the dove production. The hand with the tacked tt never comes close to the bird.

There is always the chance, however I think with sufficient practice, the risk should be extremely minimal and almost non existent.
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Vinnie Laraway
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I tried the taped on Flash Paper yesterday, and that looks EXCELLENT!!!

Your right Matt, it pops the balloon 100% of the time!

I powdered the Flash Paper with a little bit of Electric Sparkle Additive, and it looked great!

The only problems I've run into with using the Flash Paper method is how to have the Flash Paper attatched to the balloon while it's deflated, so that you can blow it up, tie it, and then light it for the pop... (Just putting it on with tape would force the tape to come off because of the stretching) Also, where would be the best place to attatch the Flash Paper to? I want to be holding the balloon by the tied end, and I want the audience to see the flash aswell, but don't want them to really see anything attatched to the balloon that shouldn't be there...

Thanks Matt!! This is my new favorite method - and now I have a use for my Dan Birch Match Exploders! =]
-Vinnie
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