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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Seeing is believing » » Next Optical Illusion Toy From My Youth. Need help finding. (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

MeetMagicMike
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Gainesville Fl
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You guys did a great job of helping me find the El Torero toy that I remembered from my youth.

Now here is another toy I remember but haven't seen in years:

You know those little toys where you have to maneurver the BBs into the small indentations? Imagine one of those mounted on the roof of a 2.5" cube. The front is open and there is a diagonal mirror from the lower front to the upper back. When you look inside the cube you see a balloon man holding several strings. The balloons are represented by the small ball bearings wheich appear to be floating around. You attempt to get all the balloons into the pockets at the top of the strings.

It really is a nice illusion of weightlessness. The tiniest tilt of the cube causes the BBs to float up and down.

This was a fun toy and it would be very easy to manufacture but I haven't seen one since I was a kid.

Any help appreciated.

Magic Mike
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Frankie
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Could it be the Kohner Nervous Breakdown Super SKill Puzzle?
“Magic is the only honest profession. A magician promises to deceive you and he does.”
MeetMagicMike
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The pictures of the Kohner Nervous Breakdown Super SKill Puzzle on Ebay certainly look like what I remember. I wish they described the game play or showed the inside.

I don't remember that packaging or name. I would guess that I had a more generic version.

That's a great lead though and I may end up getting one of those off Ebay.

Thanks!
Magic Mike

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Anatole
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There were, as I recall, two versions of this novelty item. One was square-shaped with four ball bearings (see the attached jpg), and the other was like a rocking gadget with only two balls. The one I remember wasn't a cube, but a square.

Mike, you may want to check alibris for old Johnson-Smith catalogs. Along with all the novelty items like the El Torero and the 4-ball-puzzle, it had a lot of other unusual items. I bought the Hummer Whirlaway Card from them back in the 60's and modified it so that I didn't have to turn in a circle to make it seem to go around my body. I found a way to spin the card around me staying face front to the audience, and that adaptation led eventually to me "Enchanted Walkingstick" dancing cane routine.

The scan that I am attaching is from a Kanter's Magic Shop catalog that I bought from alibris.com--just for nostalgia.

----- Amado "Sonny" Narvaez

Click here to view attached image.
----- Sonny Narvaez
Anatole
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Re-reading Mike's message, I think the party favors shown here
http://www.bulktoystore.com/store/p/stor......392l.jpg
are closer to what he's asking about. The four cubes shown here are a little different and more intricate than the one I remember in the 60's, though.

----- Amado "Sonny" Narvaez
----- Sonny Narvaez
MeetMagicMike
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Anatole, Thanks for you help. None of the items you posted are close to the item I remember. It is a cube with a diagonal mirror. When look in the front you think you are looking at a ball bearing game at the back, but the ball bearing game is actually above facing down, reflected by the mirror. Because you are looking in a mirror at a 45 degree angle your movements do not cause the movement you expect. Leaning the cube sleightly back causes the balls to apparently float upward defying gravity. Leaning the cube sleightly forward makes them float "down". (I might have that backward).

The Kohner Nervous Breakdown is probably they toy. I don't remember any of the packaging just a simple cube,
Magic Mike

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