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JoeJoe
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I used to drive a V8 truck, then a V6 jeep, and due to high gas costs last summer I've downsized to a 4 cylinder car. And most of rig doesn't fit in it, so I am building a new one.

Based on my previous sidewalk rig, I wanted this one to be bigger - it needs to fill the entire trunk of my car. But I didn't want it to weigh any more so...

Image


Instead of 2x3's, I used 2x2's. And instead of 1/4 inch plywood for the sides/bottom, I am using floor under lament (Luann board). And instead 3/4 inch plywood on the top, I am using 1/2 inch plywood on the top. It passed the "jump up and down on me" test and I can carry it with one hand, so I'm happy so far.

Image



At 24" x 80" x 12" it fits perfectly into the truck, but requires a handle on each side ... meaning it no longer stands up on it's side, but that is not that big of a deal.

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Ok sooo ... this is going to have a foam mat glued to the top, and decorated with white stars to look magical. I am thinking about spelling out in big white letters along the front side "STAGE". I think sitting on the sidewalk, that would give creditability to my show.

But that would mean painting over the brass latch ... any thoughts on this from the experts? It is a catch/draw type latch you'd find on a suitcase. Oil based paint would stick, yes? no? Perhaps there is a better latch I could switch to?

-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
lin
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Perhaps you could use two latches, one on each end (i.e., the same sides as the handles)?
Chance
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JoeJoe, I've used similarly proportioned boxes for years on the street. When I need a new one (after traveling to a different continent, or maybe just want a change in style, etc.) I can usually find what I need in an Army surplus store. Military-style wooden footlockers work great. In Europe there's a style of aluminum footlocker that works even better. And my all time favorite is a military footlocker from Switzerland.
Michael Baker
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Ready-mades solve a lot of work, but I think the point is, he already has this box built. Smile

The idea of two latches is good, especially since standing the box on end is not so much a concern at this time. That is the fastest and cheapest solution.

The latch could be painted over, but will likely wear as this part will be touched and handled a lot. Spray enamel or lacquer would be best, but the same paint may or may not work on the actual box. This depends on what kind of paint you used on it.

Another thought... Have you thought about painting the letters in gold or brass, instead of white? Then, any wear on the paint on the latch would not start showing as fast.

Regarding the handles on the side... you could switch to spring-loaded recessed handles. They would allow the box to be stood on end. http://www.cheapstudioracks.com/Handles.html
~michael baker
The Magic Company
JoeJoe
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Yes the box is already made ... and made to fit perfectly into my car. It would take a lot of hunting to find something else that fits into my trunk as well as this does. If I could have made it an inch bigger, I would have.

Upon more thought, I think the lettering needs to be on the back side of the box - so that it opens towards the audience. Otherwise, I'd need my back to the audience in order to get something out of it.

Which means the only way to do this is paint the hinge blue and put the letters over it. I used rustoleum royal blue enamel, so I'm pretty sure it will stick to the brass ... just seems a shame to be painting over good brass like that. But the only other way would be no lettering, and I think I want the lettering as I may be without a "magic shows" sign this year.

This box is going to take a serious beating - touch up is inevitable. It will get dragged along, kicked around, stepped on, tripped over, heck ... I might even get drunk and pee on it one night - you just never know. Smile

-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
Michael Baker
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Hey, everybody... party at JoeJoe's!! Smile
~michael baker
The Magic Company
JoeJoe
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Yet another pic, with my new hat ... and my new trick. I'm not sure I like "STAGE", might change that to MAGIC. It seems out of place in this pic, but I think it might be better suited for the sidewalk. I've always called my box my stage, so it seems like the right thing to be there ... but I'm just not sure:

Image


-JoeJoe


EDIT: If you haven't seen the new trick, I have a video of it on my YouTube channel:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gJlh5AluERk
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
JoeJoe
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Oh yea ... I went back to the hardware store and found some recessed handles ... they are smaller than I'd like, but the box stands upright nicely now. Thanks for the suggestion Michael!

-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
Spellbinder
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Crazy idea... feel free to ignore it... but if you intend to stand it on one end, it might be used as a chair for a spectator for some trick like Qua-Fiki's "Signed Sit on It" from The Wizards' Journal #16 (on my site). However that's not the crazy idea... the crazy idea is to have the word CHAIR on the other side of the box, but with the letters mounted to be read vertically:

C
H
A
I
R

So you use the box as a STAGE at first, then you tip it up, and turn it around so it becomes a CHAIR. Not the cleverest of ideas, I admit. Better still would be if the letters for STAGE flipped over and then spelled out CHAIR on the other side of the letters when the box is tipped up on end... but that's a lot of work.
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Chance
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That's clever Spellbinder.

JoeJoe, when I saw the pic just now I saw "Stage Front" or "This Side Towards Audience".
thegreatnippulini
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JoeJoe, when painting bright metal, you should first remove the polished surface and give it some "tooth" to hold the paint. Sanding and/or wirebrushing should do fine. I use a 120 grit flapwheel on my angle grinder, then a wirebrush cup wheel attachment.
The Great Nippulini: body piercer, Guinness World Record holder, blacksmith and man with The World's Strongest Nipples! Does the WORLD care? We shall see...
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JoeJoe
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Spellbinder: I wouldn't trust it as a chair, not stable enough for that while standing on its side.

Thegreatnippulini: you can tell I didn't sand it by looking at that pic? *** I'm impressed. Truth be known, I hate sanding.

-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
thegreatnippulini
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Sanding does suck. That's why I am saving up for a nice hobby sized glass bead blasting unit with cabinet. I have three belt sanders, two bench grinders, a few angle grinders and I STILL can't get into the nooks and crannies.
The Great Nippulini: body piercer, Guinness World Record holder, blacksmith and man with The World's Strongest Nipples! Does the WORLD care? We shall see...
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JoeJoe
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OK ... phase two. Your gonna like this!

First, you can see my entire act packed into this box ... the only thing missing is a tip jar, I know where I can get one that is smaller than mine and will fit into this box so I have everything I need to profit in one box.

Image


Notice those aluminum rods in there? They attach to the outside ... stack one on top of the other like so...

Image


And presto, my very own street lamp! Having a light really helped last year, this is a big plus. The lamp I used last year don't fit into my car ... there is some stability issues, I'm thinking of making it only two pieces so it'd be a foot smaller but more stable. The other idea is buying a large one piece rod and finding somewhere to stash it on the pitch. The light is powered by a battery inverter which I carry separately ... it is too heavy to put in the box. The blue cylinder holds my dancing canes.

Image




First question ... the lamp itself is made from cardboard and masking tape. I know from experience that leaving that in the hot trunk will cause the tape to peel. Any suggestions on some type of sealer? I remember something about building guitars ... some kind of clear sandable primer? What would it be called? What do you think would work best?



Second question: I plan to add a sign to the pole, "THE JOEJOE MAGIC SHOW". I'm not sure what to make it out of - wind must be able to pass through it. I'm thinking those plastic craft sheets people sew together with embroidery thread. How could I paint that? Perhaps I should learn to make those thingies? Suggestions?



Thanks!
-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
David Bilan
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Jo Jo,

Great set-up.

Lamp post... Here's an idea. A one-piece post could be tied to the outside of the car. Open hood and trunk of the car. Pass nylon cord through the hinges on the passenger side. Tie your pole to the side of the car and away you go.

Could you make the lamp from gatorboard (foam core) and cable ties with epoxy glue? You can get it in black so paint/taping isn't necessary.
Yes, I am a magician. No I did not make my hare (hair) disappear... it just took early retirement.
TheAmbitiousCard
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Wow. looks great jojo
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cupsandballsmagic
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Nice set up Jo Jo, perhaps if you got some bungee cord and passed it through the cetre of the poles for the lamp you could make it like a tent pole, just to make it quicker set up and keep them together when stripped down....

Also, there are some remote control lamps with a dozen or so ultra bright led's in camping shops, about the same size as the one you have, they are rechargeable and also fit in the cigarette lighter socket of the car to power up or re-charge....

Bri
Michael Baker
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I wonder if gaffer's tape might work better than masking tape. It is made for use in studios, and theaters where the lights can warm a room up real fast.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
JoeJoe
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OK ... I'm scheduled to start working Saturday and I still don't have a sign. I went to Micheal's Crafts today looking for those plastic 'canvas' sheets, but they didn't have any really big ones - only small ones.

So I'm rethinking ... I cut out a large sheet of cardboard, painting it blue ... I plan to rig some type of sign that can blow in the wind, like a hanging sign that can flap back and forth in the wind. That should keep it from blowing over.



The box itself is heavier than I'd like, I don't think it is the box itself but all the stuff I'm putting in the box - it contains much more than my previous smaller box. I'm gonna need to think about wheels as well ... top priority on that is big rubber wheels that don't make noise, I hate the sound of those plastic coasters being dragged along the concrete.



And I'm also concerned about the paint ... it appears to me that this blue enamel works better on cardboard than it does wood. I'm not so sure the paint is going to hold up all summer. Time will tell.



And then there is the biggest problem ... masking tape peeling off in the heat. I'm actually thinking mod-podge might work?? "Water based sealer glue and finish for all surfaces". Any thoughts on that one anyone??



So I can say at this point that this project is much more ambitious than my previous smaller box, which took all of about 3 days to complete.

-JoeJoe
Amazing JoeJoe on YouTube[url=https://www.youtube.com/user/AmazingJoeJoe]
mjb50
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JoeJoe, for paint that will really hold up, try 1-Shot Sign Painters paint. It's the last lead-based paint still on the market, and what Circuses use for their props. If an elephant can stand on it, so can you! You won't be able to use it right away, because it takes a couple of days to cure completely. Here's a link, just click "Distributors" for a dealer near you.
http://www.1shot.com/home.html
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