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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » Don Wayne Floating Ball (4 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Michael Baker
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Quote:
On Feb 22, 2016, Lawrens Godon wrote:
Yes I couldn't find them on the website either.
If possible, I would like to know the weight of the ball. You know, in fact I might be ending doing some DIY work and try to make one myself... good idea ?


If you wanted to make one quite similar to the DW ball, you'd have to make it from the ground up... probably vacuum form plastics. I've not seen a ready-made ball (Christmas ornament) of that size that is as thin-walled as the DW ball.

But, that doesn't mean that it can't be done, or that a heavier ball would not work. It worked for David Abbott, Okito, Thurston, and many others, long before these light-weight, mylar plastics were ever invented.

Here is a Christmas ornament, if you want to try that, but it will weigh more.

http://www.christmascentral.com/p-409252......0mm.aspx

There are also no rules that state the ball must be shiny silver, or that it must be a ball. A friend made one from a large Styrofoam skull. Jim Riser has a PDF download on making one from a regular size plastic Halloween skull. http://jamesriser.com/Magic/JamesRiserMagic.html

Okito used soldered brass, then paper mache covered with gold leaf, and finally light-weight celluloid covered with small squares of gold foil from candy wrappers pasted on the ball until he found the ball he liked best. There is no reason why that same finishing technique couldn't be used with a Styrofoam ball.

The one advantage that we have today over those guys from times long ago is that threads are stronger and thinner. Take advantage of that, combine it with proper background and lighting techniques, and you can likely surmount the absence of the lovely DW balls.

But we can also hope that someone will bring them to market again. They are really nice!
~michael baker
The Magic Company
Lawrens Godon
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France
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Thank you all for the valuable infos.
Of course I was talking about creating a ball from scratch in the style of my act, and not trying to reproduce the wonderful DW ball.
As Michael pointed out, there's no rule about the size or the color etc of the ball... In fact I will try to incorporate some inside light Smile

Bill I'm off to read your review right now...
ssucahyo
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indonesia
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I bought that ball about 7yrs ago around $100 plus shipping.
Creator of the "High Voltage Gimmick" and Shaman's spirit table
https://youtu.be/Rlgl4CzUa98

IG: @affordable_illusions_magic
msillusions
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Got mine from Magic Inc in Chicago back in either late 70's or early 80's for $45. I was in high school and practiced for hours with my sister as the "operator" off stage. Also worked for a long time getting the lighting just right. During performance it looked perfect and folks were Oohing and Ahhing, until my friend running lights hit a dimmer and brought up the lights. The entire audience went Awwwww, as they saw everything.
Michael Baker
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Quote:
On Feb 24, 2016, msillusions wrote:
Got mine from Magic Inc in Chicago back in either late 70's or early 80's for $45. I was in high school and practiced for hours with my sister as the "operator" off stage. Also worked for a long time getting the lighting just right. During performance it looked perfect and folks were Oohing and Ahhing, until my friend running lights hit a dimmer and brought up the lights. The entire audience went Awwwww, as they saw everything.


Quite amazing really... It's usually the sound guy that screws up the show. LOL!
~michael baker
The Magic Company
msillusions
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I wish it had been a sound problem vs the expose it turned out to be. Beautiful illusion destroyed for that audience.
jay leslie
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YEAH
I had one with an Asrah where the principal of the school opened the doors (while it was light outside) and yelled into the auditorium “The Kings are in first place” (I guess he was a bit of a hockey fan, jerk)

Needless to say……. that was the end of the Asrah.
Ray Pierce
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I will admit that was ALWAYS a pain as I performed this for years in every type of venue imaginable. The only exception was the Playboy Club in Century City. I was doing a review show there in '81. It came time to light the ball which I was worried about as the audience was VERY close. The stage was only about 12 feet deep with tables at the edge of the lip. I started adding light and kept going until I had every light in the place on without flashing a thing from any seat. It was the one and only time this has ever happened. The reason? The entire rear wall of the stage was made up of mirrors with the FOH lights reflecting right back into their eyes. It was the best combination ever!
Ray Pierce
<BR>www.HollywoodAerialArts.com
JNeal
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Ray,
I did nearly the same thing when I floated a lantern in a lounge show in Vegas at the old Maxim hotel. Bright lights and a close audience?
No problem! However I was given a background of a live band with plenty of chrome mic stands, music stands, silver colored drum set . There was so much bounce back of lighting on all that polished metal and with an audience that was seated slightly below the stage... that I could walk that T_____D with impunity!

BTW- Café' members...I SAW Ray Pierce do that show at the Playboy Club and it is just as he says it was...What a show!
And where do you think I learned that lighting trick?!
visit me @ JNealShow.com
hugmagic
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When Blackstone worked the Tangier club in Akron, Ohio, it was very close (8-10 feet). He did the lightbulb every show. We had a mirror backdrop behind the band with chaser light strips in it. We still had trouble with things showing until we lit the small candles on all the tables. Just enough, to pull the eyes away.
Sometimes less is more.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
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Write direct as I will be turning off my PM's.
JNeal
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Yes Richard! Being able to adapt, is crucial to achieving professional results! Clever solution you had!
visit me @ JNealShow.com
jay leslie
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I put candles against the inside of a long 8 partition floor to ceiling window.
It was dark outside so the 30 foot of glass was like a mirror. The candles on the floor were just enough to break the mirror effect.
JNeal
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I posted elsewhere on the Café... but now realize that this is the correct place...
I have found about 12 original unused Don Wayne Floating Balls, while clearing out Don’s place in Las Vegas.
These were made by Don himself.
Don trained several of us (many years ago) to make these, but it is unlikely that making more will ever happen.

I’m essence, when these are gone... that will be the end of them

I will soon be offering them for sale on the Café’ for those who have wanted one before they are gone
visit me @ JNealShow.com
Ray Pierce
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Even with all of Don's drilling and sizing jigs, it will just never be the same. Just seeing that automatic vacu-forming machine work was such a joy. Those were some of my favorite memories of time with you in his driveway!
Ray Pierce
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JNeal
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Yes Ray , you are right!

He had all these tools to make sure that the ball halves fitted together well. then the other little jigs to make sure the eyelets were perfectly placed and spaced correctly.

After the gluing and seam taping... the dreaded final test: Don had to look at each ball and give it thumbs up or down.

Believe it or not Ray, I found a brand new, unused, in original packaging... Top 10! Talk about a memory!
visit me @ JNealShow.com
Ray Pierce
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Yes! ... and grading the separate halves to match them perfectly! Don was a master for a reason, and we were all the better because of it.
Ray Pierce
<BR>www.HollywoodAerialArts.com
JNeal
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We also found a lot of the KO-REC-TYPE cartridges for 'Room Service'. As you recall, this product was a tape version of 'white out fluid'... in a dry form.
Well, like white out fluid, it was a relic of the typewriter era and has been long gone from retail and stationery stores.

Don had a huge cache' of it and despite the passing years, I tried it out on the disc for Room Service... and it worked perfectly!
Will wonders never cease?!
visit me @ JNealShow.com
Ray Pierce
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Amazing... but did you find the old Dancing Hank jigs for turning those loops??? He made so many marvels of design.
Ray Pierce
<BR>www.HollywoodAerialArts.com
JNeal
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Yup!

We found that original 2x4" piece of lumber with all those specifically placed metal pieces... that allows you to turn a piece of wire into a miracle!

Both Chris Hart and I were tempted to have a contest and see who could remember all the 'moves' and the correct sequence... that WILL happen another time.

Perhaps you should get in on that challenge?
visit me @ JNealShow.com
FrankFindley
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Quote:
On Jun 11, 2020, JNeal wrote:
Yup!

We found that original 2x4" piece of lumber with all those specifically placed metal pieces... that allows you to turn a piece of wire into a miracle!

Both Chris Hart and I were tempted to have a contest and see who could remember all the 'moves' and the correct sequence... that WILL happen another time.

Perhaps you should get in on that challenge?


Thanks for sharing! Would be wonderful to capture this on video along with your recollections. So much history and "secrets behind the secrets" is only in your heads!
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