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Hemingway Lock by Collectors’ Workshop

(c. 1984) (Submit Review) (Submit Update)

For many years Collector’s Workshop has made the Hemingway Lock, a mechanical prop designed for a presentation of the standard Seven Keys to Baldpate plot. Although the workings of this mechanical lock are not unique, the lock itself is. It is very large, weighing almost two pounds, with a shackle that protrudes two inches high and is 3/8 of an inch thick. The lock is bright polished chrome, round, but with a flat bottom. It has a large engraved logo on the front with both wording and an American flag. The lock not only opens a wide distance, it springs open with a very loud and solid snap.

The keys are each distinguished by being covered with a different colored slipcover and mounted individually on heavy key rings. Because the keys are color coded, the performer has some extra performance material available. After five spectators each choose a key, trade if they want to, and settle on one, the routine might progress along a color-reading path.

Effect: Five different colored keys are placed in a strikingly beautiful antique, hand-crafted, gold inlaid brandy snifter and passed through the audience. Four members freely select a key, leaving one for the performer. Keys may be exchanged among spectators and performer. Finally, one key remains in the goblet, this key going to the performer.

The spectator’s each try their key to no avail, the performer’s key is now inserted and it OPENS the lock!

It’s a reputation-maker. To be sure, some marvelous versions of this effect exist on the market today. Some rely on batteries and radio transmission. Others have incorporated locks that were well-gimmicked, but were small and insubstantial, as compared to the spectacular effect. This lock is a world-beater. No electronics, no switches of any kind. It is one hefty piece of work weighing almost two pounds. It is a heavy, polished chrome padlock of imposing construction. And, when it opens, at the peak moment of dramatic tension, it literally ‘springs’ open with a resounding snap!

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Approx. Price: $89.50 (2005) ***

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2 reviews for Hemingway Lock by Collectors’ Workshop

  1. George Guerra

    One very heavy lock trick

    The American Lock Co. lock used in this effect is quite impressive in itself. It’s big and heavy for a padlock. I have an original and that was a Series 700 lock, which I assume is still used for the effect. The one drawback to this version is that the method requires the performer to open the lock at the end. This is in contrast to Key-R-Rect, where the spectator is allowed to do the unlocking. Now the presentation included with the effect takes this into account, but still it is rather awkward and suspicion may be aroused that the lock is gimmicked.

  2. Amazing Corbin

    Great padlock. Quality and amazing effect

    I love this lock and have performed it in every banquet show I’ve performed since I received it. This is a well made, heavy padlock that looks and feels great. The keys come with color collars for whatever presentation you like, however the colors can come off if you want to. With this lock the performer must open the lock, instead of the spectator. However the lock opens with a loud click and it’s large enough that everyone in an average sized audience can hear and see the lock opening.

    Strongly recommended

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