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kaytracy
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I need a bit of help or suggestions if any are willing. Feel free to pm me so as not to expose.

I am trying to make a tree branch re-leaf after I pluck the leaves from it. I have tried making a device with aluminum and piano wire--I am missing something. I am trying an imitation branch, and R/C control rods, still having problems.
I want to be able to have three to four sets of leaves re-appear along the branch slowly and under my control--read manual, not electronic or remote. I am not using feather leaves or bits, but rather silk leaves for more realism. Any thoughts on what I am missing to make this work smoothly?
Or, am I trying to re-invent the wheel and there is one already available out there?
(I do NOT want to use my drooping flower, or my blooming feather duster thingie--they are not the desired look!)
Thanks in advance
Kay
Kay and Tory
www.Bizarremagick.com
Leland Stone
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Hiya, Kay:

Your idea now is stationary tube (branch) and pushed load (leaves). Sounds difficult, as you've discovered from your manipulation of push rods and various hardware.

How about reversing the process? Stationary leaves, and PULLED branch. This branch could be a cloth sleeve, dolled up with all sorts of bark-like appendages and what have you, then slowly PULLED (via IT or __________) to reveal the leaves. Seems to me that a nice clay pot could both anchor the frame and hide the tricky bits.

Sincerely,
Leland Edward Stone
kaytracy
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Thanks Leland. I will look into that direction. I am very determined, as my sweetie will attest to the messes I have made working on this!
Kay and Tory
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George Ledo
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Here's a couple of thoughts for you (I'm still working on my first cup of coffee this morning, so please bear with me).

Your effect kinda reminds me of a type of flagpole on the market where the flag is stored inside the pole when not in use. It's pulled inside the pole from one corner (where the line attaches) and then pulled out from the other corner for display. The pole is just a tube large enough for the flag and the rope to move around a bit inside. So, my first thought for you would be to have the wire attached to the forward end of the leaf, so in a sense you're "pulling" the leaf out instead of pushing it. If you use a spring wire, you can probably set it up so the leaf opens up at an angle to the branch instead of straight out. Of course, you may have already tried this...

On a different track, I seem to remember Robert-Houdin describing his Orange Tree effect in his Memoirs and going into a bit of detail as to the workings. My copy is stashed away pending our move to a new house, so I can't get to it, but if someone has a copy handy they may be able to look it up for you.

Hope this helps a bit. Good luck.
That's our departed buddy Burt, aka The Great Burtini, doing his famous Cups and Mice routine
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kaytracy
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Thanks Much George, I had not thought of the flagpole method, I will play with it a bit while I search the Learned Pig for Houdin's memoirs!
Kay and Tory
www.Bizarremagick.com
hugmagic
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The Houdin tree will not work in this case as the orange appeared in a clamshell opening like affair.

Pulling the cover off is the easiest way to go. Lord knows, I've made enough blooming stuff over the years to know almost every variation every done or available.

If I wasn't so swamped getting ready for conventions, I could give this a little more think time.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
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Michael Baker
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Quote:
On 2004-06-12 15:53, Leland Stone wrote:

How about reversing the process? Stationary leaves, and PULLED branch.
Sincerely,
Leland Edward Stone




Boy, do I love this kind of reverse/lateral thinking! And I really like this re-leafing branch idea.

As a self-styled, "Thing in the Basement", I too have a mountain of "works in progress" cluttering my nest. I can appreciate the enthusiasm to "give it one more try".

Food for thought... never seen it done: How about the branches being hollow tubes as described, but with openings at the back. Inside these are sliding, or rotating tubes similarly configured. Depending on their relative position, and how the openings are lined up, they are either sealed, or not. Piano wire, being able to flex, while holding a "memorized" curve, could cause the leaves to pop through as the openings became large enough to allow them. The curve of the piano wire would be such that the leaves would be made to appear up both sides of the branches, even though they are all basically coming from behind.

Of course this wouldn't lend itself well to the leaves appearing gradually, unless the tip of the leaves were able to work themselves further and further through the openings as they became larger.

The silk leaves that you are using, I can only assume are the store-bought stiffened types. That in itself may be the culprit.
Is the problem friction?

Also, how are you wiring them to push? Each on a separate wire, or in clusters?
~michael baker
The Magic Company
kaytracy
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Thanks to all for some excellent suggestions and being willing to help me figure this out!
I was about to disect my blooming feather flower thing last night!
Well, I started playing wtih a larger diameter tube in copper to get some nice organic curvature and form, I start the soldering tomorrow. it does not look as huge as I had first thought it might! I will try to get some pictures up on my site as I get it going in case anyone would care to give me feedback on the appearance etc.

I have been playing with leaving and removing the little plastic stiffiners, and doing a cigar roll type set up, when slowly moved up, they do gently unfurl nicely.
I really want a slow transition as the "branch" itself is slowly moving. Not all will see this happening-some will , and I am okay with that as the story is intended to be the focal point, and the effect is simply the picture for the page.

someone told me yesterday that I might be using the wrong gage of piano wire, and to try a bit larger for a more forgiving flex. I was going for small cluster at each branch point-three places.
Kay and Tory
www.Bizarremagick.com
hugmagic
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This sounds like really major undertaking that will only work for a club type setting. You could not do it closeup for they would see the mechanism. And it is too small for stage.

Try using .041 piano wire as a start. It will give a little more stiffness but still be able to bend around the curves.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
www.hughesmagic.com
email-hugmagic@raex.com
Write direct as I will be turning off my PM's.
Slim King
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Orlando
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How about a little compressed air pushing out a baloon (Leaf) type of affair. An air blatter.( Is blatter the German word for Leaf?)....Or is it Air Bladder? You probably have this done by now anyway.
THE MAN THE SKEPTICS REFUSE TO TEST FOR ONE MILLION DOLLARS.. The Worlds Foremost Authority on Houdini's Life after Death.....
makeupguy
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Forget the piano wire... use bicycle brake cable...

it's flexible. and it's DESIGNED to travel in it's sleeve..

Just cut off the outer section and leave the inner wired sticking out to tie your leaf onto it..

Then run the brake cable through your "branches"
leapinglizards
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Also, make sure the wire runs all the way to the tip of the leaf, and then a tiny bit BEYOND. This way, that tiny bit always extends out of the hole and the leafe won't get stuck in there.
Leaping Lizards!!! Who knew it was possible.
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Michael Baker
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I like both suggestions from makeupguy and leapinglizards.

How many cables do you think it would be possible to operate at one time with a single plunger?

Possibly unrelated, but what would be your suggestions for setting up the reappearances (leaves, blooms, whatever) in a slightly staggered sequence, so the reappearances happen, not all simultaneously, but a few here and there, followed by others, etc? I think that would make a prettier effect, and possibly even detach it from a mechanical cause.

~michael
~michael baker
The Magic Company
kregg
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How big are the leafs, how fast do you want them to leaf out?
Elastic works well for instant appearances, could also use pulls (motorized of not).

Kregg
POOF!
Lou Hilario
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Check out the Jim Sommers' "Build Your Own Illusions" book, page 5 to 9. It refers to the Money Tree. I built my own and it works well, silently and can be done up close. I use a servo motor controlled by a 9volt battery. Leaves can appear instead of bills using tubes ala rising cards.
Magic, Illusions, Juggling, Puppet & Parrot Show ^0^
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