Review by Andy Martin for Princess Qianlong (Prinzessin Qianlong) by Tony Lackner, Eckhard Boettcher

Review by Andy Martin for Princess Qianlong (Prinzessin Qianlong) by Tony Lackner, Eckhard Boettcher
Review by Andy Martin for Princess Qianlong (Prinzessin Qianlong) by Tony Lackner, Eckhard Boettcher
4 out of 5

Here is a rare beauty from the German master magic duo of Tony Lackner and Eckhard Boettcher c. 2000.

The props are well made and look interesting and colorful and the method is easy to do.  It comes with a great patter  story filled with drama and intrigue which I have done my best to edit and enhance below (beginning with a basic google translation).  Basically the princess is hidden under one of the three pillars and if her brother, the prince, cannot find her on the first attempt, the lovely and beautiful princess will be forced to marry a hundred year old Persian scholar who is possibly the ugliest person in the world. 

The pressure is on to save the princess …  which of course you do by successfully producing an envelope with the name of the pillar that the princess is under 🙂

This effect has recently been remade and significantly upgraded using an electronic gimmick as The Mystery of Horus by N8 Quality Magic. This is the original that uses an old school method that needs no batteries, and requires no reset or maintenance.  Not a sexy method but reliable and just as amazing to the spectator 🙂

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Review by Andy Martin for Hoffman Coin Wand by Colin Rose

Review by Andy Martin for Hoffman Coin Wand by Colin Rose
Review by Andy Martin for Hoffman Coin Wand by Colin Rose
4 out of 5

The Coin Wand was first exposed in Hoffman’s Modern Magic as The Half-Crown (or Florin) Wand (pg. 203), it was first used in performance c. 1872. Stanyon’s advertised their version c. 1902, Roterberg advertised there version c. 1904, and Thayer were advertising theirs at least as early 1921 but probably earlier. Thayer also had a Slender Coin Wand, but this did not use the same mechanical approach.

Colin’s Coin Wand is about as smooth as the Owen’s Coin Wand though the finish is not quite as nice and there is no flared end with the Owen’s.  Like the Owen’s this does makes a slight scraping sound which can be heard very close-up, but this is not a close-up item anyway so it is moot.  Very fine motion.

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Review by Andy Martin for Galaxian by Stephen Tucker

Review by Andy Martin for Galaxian by Stephen Tucker
Review by Andy Martin for Galaxian by Stephen Tucker
4 out of 5

Even though I normally don’t like gimmicked versions of Paul Curry’s “Out of This World” this deck is technically not gimmicked (it is simply a deck with a half red backs and half black backs) I do like Stephen Tucker’s thinking.  This is probably more to fool magicians than something you would replace Out of This World to lay people because the premise is king of strange – why are you dealing the cards face-up?

But it still has some merit and unlike many other versions I decided to keep this one for now as it feels like there is some potential here 🙂

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Review by Andy Martin for Vampire Block Escape (Mini Size) by Michael Baker

Review by Andy Martin for Vampire Block Escape (Mini Size) by Michael Baker
Review by Andy Martin for Vampire Block Escape (Mini Size) by Michael Baker
4 out of 5

Michael Baker is always working on something new or refining his existing line.   He now has produced this wonderful item in three sizes: Regular, Giant, and now this one, Mini.  A version was also created exclusively for Stevens Magic here.  

Vampire Block Escape is related to the popular Vampire Block but it does not use a chain or cord.  It uses a slightly different mechanism but looks great, works smoothly and is convincing to the spectator.

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Review by Andy Martin for Transmission (1 of only 6) by Thomas Pohle

Review by Andy Martin for Transmission (1 of only 6) by Thomas Pohle
Review by Andy Martin for Transmission (1 of only 6) by Thomas Pohle
4 out of 5

The third item in Thomas’ Egyptian Series is a clean prediction with colorful looking props.  There are no funny moves and the spectator can turn over the card and open the prediction themselves.  Reset is quick and this is always ready to go.  The only downside is that it can not be repeated to the same audience but with Thomas producing so many neat items these days that won’t be a problem 🙂

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Review by Andy Martin for The Executive Magic Set by Magical Concepts Plus

Review by Andy Martin for The Executive Magic Set by Magical Concepts Plus
Review by Andy Martin for The Executive Magic Set by Magical Concepts Plus
4 out of 5

This neat item was designed and produced by, Magical Concepts Plus, Wood Dale, Illinois c. 1990.  It is a hand-crafted, walnut and maple case that houses various magical effects. It also came originally with an instruction video.  I received no instructions or video when I obtained this.  It appears to come with the following items:

  1. Custom Walnut version of Ed Massey’s Ribbon Fantastique (I’ll include instructions for a previous version).
  2. A wonderful version of Heath’s Mystic Tappit but with a clever ruse which means you don’t need to remember any colors.  (I’ll write up instructions for this – it is an amazing and simple to perform item that is always ready to go and works perfectly!)
  3. Pair of normal dice
  4. Deck of regular playing cards

I don’t know if there was anything else – it feels pretty snug so I’m not sure if they could fit much more in the box. 

On the front of the box it has the Latin phrase: “Omne Quod Videt Non Est” – searching online did not give a meaningful translation, but I’m guessing it says something along the lines of: “Everything is not what it seems” (though I could be wildly wrong here!).

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Review by Horst Paffen for Egyptian Paddle by Harry Keyl, Keyl's Magic

Review by Horst Paffen for Egyptian Paddle by Harry Keyl, Keyl's Magic
Review by Horst Paffen for Egyptian Paddle by Harry Keyl, Keyl's Magic
4 out of 5

I bought this trick in February 2021 on ebay.de. The trick was accompanied only by a copy of an advertising paper from Keyl’s Magic, from a time before the Euro and when typewriters were still used. Since I like to look in at Martin’s Magic, I then found my trick as “Egyptian Paddle”. Andy did suspect Harry Keyl as the manufacturer, which I was then able to confirm by email with a photocopy of the advertising sheet. Since the sequence of a paddle trick can be easily reproduced from the prop, I wrote a routine for it, which Andy has in bumpy English translation from me.

About Harry Keyl and Keyl’s Magic is unfortunately almost nothing to find on the Internet, although there is a H. Keyl in Zwolle (Netherlands) with the address of “Magic-Harry”.

Andy then sent me the instructions for Harry Keyl’s “Turtle Race”. I will make a trick out of it with three rabbits and a hedgehog and playing cards as race track and train cards. In Germany there is a fairy tale of “Hare and Hedgehog”, where the hedgehog tricks the hare instead of a tortoise. Because the hedgehog man and his wife looked completely the same.

Horst M. Paffen
Near Cologne in Germany

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Review by Andy Martin for Tele-Vision Box by Klingl

Review by Andy Martin for Tele-Vision Box by Klingl
Review by Andy Martin for Tele-Vision Box by Klingl
4 out of 5

A single box version of the popular Television-Box effect expertly crafted by Klingl. Instead of concealing the gimmick in the second outer box this uses a tube with which the gimmick can be added to or seamlessly removed.  You use the tube, which can be shown empty, to view the box and can see immediately where each number is situated.  One of the benefits to this approach is that you can be surrounded when you do the work as there is nothing to see.

Klingl or Zauber-Klingl was an Austrian Magic manufacturer and dealer founded by Rudiga Michael Klingl c. 1869 and they continued until the 1980’s. Their creations are high quality and are keenly sought by collectors today.

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Review by Andy Martin for Super Block Penetration (Super Penetration) by Thomas Pohle, Eckhard Boettcher

Review by Andy Martin for Super Block Penetration (Super Penetration) by Thomas Pohle, Eckhard Boettcher
Review by Andy Martin for Super Block Penetration (Super Penetration) by Thomas Pohle, Eckhard Boettcher
4 out of 5

This is an early penetration from Thomas Pohle released by the prolific German magic dealer Eckhard Boettcher. It looks effective but is a little more  involved than his later block penetrations such as: China Block Penetration and China Block Surprise. Michael Baker’s later Mandarin Block Escape uses a similar method but with Thomas’ you could have everything examined if you wanted.

This was re-released by Thomas as The Impossible Die and Wand Penetration c. 2019

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Review by Andy Martin for Beauty Contest (Pin-Up Girl Transposition) by Magiarte

Review by Andy Martin for Beauty Contest (Pin-Up Girl Transposition) by Magiarte
Review by Andy Martin for Beauty Contest (Pin-Up Girl Transposition) by Magiarte
4 out of 5

Magiarte were a magic dealer and manufacturer in Portugal of a unique line of magic c. 1956-1996.  They were founded by Armindo de Matos and Eduardo Franco.  Their beautiful hand painted props are quite rare today and are perfect for display.

The instructions that came with this item say that the photo album starts off with all six color postcards and then just one vanishes to appear later in the ornate frame.  But a listing on Potter & Potter says the album starts empty and then the six color postcards appear inside the album.  I think the best way to present this would be like this:

  • Show the empty stage stand and six color postcard and flags.
  • Place the six flags (Portugal, France, Spain, UK, USA, and Brazil) with the back out on the stand
  • Show the six color postcards.
  • Flip through the empty photo album that has place holders for six countries with flags.
  • Have a flag chosen from the stand to select which country wins the contest.
  • Vanish the six color postcards (using your favorite method!).
  • Show the appearance of postcards inside the photo album.
  • But one is missing and instead a large flag is shown in its place.
  • Reveal the chosen flag (it is the same flag as appeared in the album).
  • Show the chosen color postcard appearing on the stage stand.

This seems to be a better routine with a lot of magic and some beautiful colorful props the likes of which you probably have not seen very often.

This effect certainly could be performed, but it probably has more appeal to the collector. The stage stand where the beauty contest winner appears is a little temperamental and has to be handled with some extra control. The photo album and flag cards are cardboard and paper and they probably would not stand up to too much abuse. Having said that they look very good for a sixty year old prop!

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