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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Smooth as silk » » Hankerchief Balls (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Ty Argo
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Columbus, Ohio
525 Posts

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Does anyone still use these anymore?
You know, those fun Smile little hollow balls with a hole in it and a loop of catgut designed to vanish a hank.
Do you use it? What effect do you use it for? How do you like it?
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Darkwing
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Nashville Tn
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I use the hank ball all the time. I don't use the loop. You can vanish and produce as many as three silks with the right one. I have as many as four differnent types and I highly recommend them for silk magic.
Ty Argo
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Columbus, Ohio
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Do you use it for any special effects or just for simple vanishes and appearances? How do you use it without the loop? Do you just ditch the gimmick?
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Ron Reid
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Phoenix, Arizona
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Hi Ty:

There is another version that's been around forever - I can't remember the name though. It's a hank ball with protruding clip instead of the loop; you can clip it between your fingers.

I'm pretty sure Duane Laflin sells this along with a book/video on the differnt uses.

An effect I've seen (that can be done with either ball) is the invisible silk. The hank ball is in one hand, hidden. The other hand holds up the invisible hank by forefinger and thumb. The other hand (with hank ball) comes up to stroke the invisible silk a couple of times. On the third stroke, you pinch a bit of the silk, and the whole silk appears as the hand goes down.

I believe I saw Fawcett Ross do this years ago - it looked very magical.

Ron Reid
Ty Argo
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Columbus, Ohio
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Ron-
Thank you for the info. I was aware of the kind with the clip, but prefer the loop, as there are sets of moves you can do to show your hands empty all around smoothly. I do like the invisible silk idea. Cute effect! Thanks for your input.
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-The Scot-
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It is called the 'Nikko Gimmick' and is a Palmo Ball. Just for the record Smile
Darkwing
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Nashville Tn
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Scot,

I please forgive me for the correction, but the Nikko Gimmick and the Palmo Ball are two different devices. The Nikko gimmick has a protruding metal clip in which you can thumb clip the ball. The Palmo gimmick is an oblong version of the hank ball. You can do vanishes, productions, and color changes like a die tube except the Palmo has no cloth tape inside.

David

Ty,

Concerning the loop on the hank ball, I have mixed emotions about using the loop. I feel you may be overemphasizing the fact you hands are empty, which will end up with a lot of hand washing. In another words, from the audience's point of view they can't see what your hiding but they know you are hiding something in you hands. My thoughts are why run when no one is chasing you. You are already one ahead of the audience with the gimmick. Just my opinion.

As a side note, you can buy a large, very nice hank ball from Duane Laflin. It has a larger capacity then the others available. I don't think Duane carries the Nikko gimmick. I bought mine from Denny and Lee magic.
Ty Argo
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Columbus, Ohio
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Good points Darkwing. Thanks for the recommendation too! I think I would leave the loop for a clean steal, but not use the "washing" moves. I agree it can look like you are trying to hide something. Thanks all!
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DanTheMagicMan
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Edgewater, Maryland USA
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Duane's hank ball does not have the loop, which is the way I like it. He has videos on his handling at his web site http://www.laflinmagic.com
Dan The Magic Man
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Alan Munro
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Kentwood, Michigan, USA
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I use both hank balls and palmo balls in routines. The palmo is great for doing the half dyed hank, without the need for switching tubes. I use a hank ball for Laflin effect, using silks with a rabbit, a hat and a skunk -- he has many effects that use a hank ball. I never use the gut loop because it gets in the way of a good handling.

I use a silk as cover so that both hands can be shown empty, in a casual manner.
cheaptrick
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Wilmington, Delaware
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I've taken a plain hankball, and mounted a small machine screw in a hole drilled into the ball and extended out about 3/4 inches.

I painted the screw flesh color.

I have a tremor problem, and this makes the hankball much more useable.

Smile
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Chris Capstone
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Tulsa, OK
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Quote:
On 2003-07-10 13:06, Ty Argo wrote:
Do you use it for any special effects or just for simple vanishes and appearances? How do you use it without the loop? Do you just ditch the gimmick?

If you can do the Mora/Vernon wand spin vanish, use of a hank ball is a great way do a bare handed vanish of a very large silk. If you don't know this particular vanish, the best way to learn it is from Ammar's Complete Cups & Balls book & video/DVD's.

Steal the hank ball (no loop) when you pick up the silk. After you stuff the silk into the hank ball the audience will see your free hand empty as you go to pick up the wand. Don't "show" the hand empty, just let it be seen empty. Let a small tip of the corner stick up out of your hand. Do the wand spin, pause a couple of beats before showing the silk has vanished. You will be able to ditch the ball when you dispose of the wand. If you lay the wand across the mouth of an inverted top hat or other recepticle, it's a very natural point at which to ditch the ball. It just drops in the hat as you lay the wand down. Do it with the sleeves rolled up.

There are a number of details here that defeat possible solutions and create conviction in the minds of the audience with this method:

1. Use the wand in other effects and spin it as a flourish at other times in your act. This will condition the audience to the spin as a flourish and thus reduce suspicion when you use it as a vanish.

2. If the wand is laying across the top hat at other times when you're not using it, it will make sense to put it back in that location thus reducing suspicion when you ditch the ball.

3. Seeing the small corner sticking out of the hand up to the point of the spin and allowing the free hand to be seen empty work together to defeat "it's in the other hand".

4. The fact that such a large silk is vanished defeats the "I know about those fake thumbs, I had one in my magic kit when I was a kid." Up to a 24" silk can be vanished, depending on your ball & weight of silk.

5. The fact the the vanish takes place with rolled up sleeves, and well away from the body defeats the idea that a pull is used.

6. Although it's not mandatory, you can pick up something with the hand that just held the silk as you lay down the wand and ditch the ball. This give additional misdirection away from the ditch.

This vanish does require alot of practice, but it is so convincing and worth the effort. I have received spontaneous "uncued" applause with this vanish from lay audiences. Try it!
Chris Capstone
ufo
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Phoenix, Arizona
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Wand spin vanish with the hank ball! that's great! Thanks for the idea. I love the hank ball and that it fries the folks looking for the thumbtip moves, but I never thought of the spin vanish with it.
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Alan Munro
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Kentwood, Michigan, USA
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A hank ball can be vanished using a move from Bruce Elliot's The Best In Magic. The same move is also taught in at least one of Duane Laflin's videos. I use the move a lot, and it's easy and convincing.
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