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DIY, Makers & Builders in Magic & Conjuring

Naturally magicians are good with their hands. This often means they are very good with building and making things. There is a long tradition of magicians building their own props and gimmicks.

In this topic we list products where you will need to roll up your sleeves, prepare your tools, and make something.

related topics: Illusions, Escape & Stage

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Ian Baxter
BIRT: Baxter's Indian Rope Trick by Ian Baxter

A lovely print-and-perform trick.

Who in magic, beginner or expert, has not purchased, watched, or performed that perennial "Gone To Lunch" or as it is sometimes called, "The Indian Rope Trick"? This magic shop favourite has been making the rounds for decades and is still a consistent best-seller for dealers all over the world.

Would you believe, Australian card man Ian Baxter has for years been performing his own version that tops the original? Baxter put this together back in the 1990's and sold it through limited dealerships. Yes, the 'Gone To Lunch' theme is fully intact, but there...

★★★★★ $8
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Koo Hu
Artifact by Koo Hu

A unique suspension of 1 and 1/2 cards that can be installed anywhere and serves as a great conversation starter. There is absolutely nothing attached to it left, right, up, or down, all around. Make it look regal by placing a glass bowl on top completely isolating it and letting the conversations begin.

1st edition 2024, video 5:13.

★★★★★ $4.95
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MP4 (video)

Julio Caso de los Cobos Fidalgo
Magic with Electronics by Julio Caso de los Cobos Fidalgo

This ebook is for all who would like to combine magic and electronics but have little experience with electronics and have no idea what the possibilities are. The author explains a range of projects that will give you an overview of some of the magic effects achievable with electronics.

The first project has nothing to do with electronics but it will teach you how to write software, an app for your mobile phone. It is a very simple app, and it will not make you a programmer, but it allows you to get your feet wet and get a glimpse at the possibilities of apps.

You will then be introduced...

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E. W. Bud Morris
More Magic with Electronics by E. W. Bud Morris
  • "S.O.S." Triangle
  • Dance Of Death
  • How's Your Bird?
  • The Tattle-Tale Heart
  • Return To Boggart’s Inn
  • The Laughing Skull
  • Train To Nowhere
  • A.K. Cassette - Improved
  • Electronics In Mentalism
  • Source Section
  • Final After-Thoughts

Note that this digital edition does not include the reprint of the first volume. The first volume is available separately here.

1st edition 1975, 59 pages; PDF 54 pages.

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Dustin Marks
103 Tips and Resources for Magicians by Dustin Marks

This ebook will save you time and money. It is a quick read and has tips you have not seen. Good resources for professionals and lots of information for beginners. Learn how to use Siri or Alexa for practice. Use Notion to keep a database of your tricks. Learn magic principles, magic utilities, memory tips, links to everyday props on Amazon and more. It's a great reference book to all things magic.

  • Tip #2 Learn the secret to never forget a good idea you have.
  • Tip #7 Learn which database to keep track of your routines and effects.
  • Tips 8, 9 and 10. Learn tricks on how to remember your...
★★★★ $4.95
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Dr. John D. Bain
Multiplying Golf Balls by Dr. John D. Bain

You will not only learn the classic multiplying ball effect but also how to make the necessary props yourself, and in particular how to make the most important half-shell yourself.

The perfection of the effect does require skill, but the ardent practitioner will achieve success without great difficulty.

Excerpt from the Introduction:

My favorite magic trick involving the use of balls has always been the Multiplying Ball Trick. Here is a tutorial book that will show you how to secure the materials that are needed to make props for the trick and then how to perform the effect. I have...

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Larry Brodahl
Slowing Down the Nielsen Magic Chinese Sticks by Larry Brodahl

Anyone who owns the Nielsen Magic Chinese Sticks knows that you need to keep a level and steady hand during performance. Until now. A DIY braking system that stops issues if the sticks are tilted too far downward.

No moving parts, no batteries, and nothing to wear out.

1st edition 2023, PDF 16 pages.

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Chris Wasshuber
Crymp: the RFID-blocking Origami Wallet with Closure by Chris Wasshuber

Crymp is an origami wallet (no gluing or sewing) that you can fold in a matter of a few minutes. With some practice, one can do it in under a minute. The unique feature of the wallet is that it has a closure. A specially designed plastic piece, roughly the size of a credit card, is inserted in such a way that it locks in place so that it cannot fall out or be pulled out during normal usage. It allows a rubber band to be semi-permanently linked to the wallet. This makes opening and closing the wallet very easy because the rubber band can't be lost. One can let go of it and it remains attached...

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gadget & PDF

Dave Arch
Craft Store Conjuring by Dave Arch

In the absence of a brick-and-mortar magic store in your area, you no doubt already have discovered the inspirational riches for the magician that exist within the walls of a Hobby Lobby.

From 2019 to 2023 Dave Arch authored a column in the IBM's Linking Ring magazine sharing one of his ideas each month. This ebook is now a compilation of those columns as well as enough extras to bring the total to 90+ different ideas from nearly every section of the store and every magic genre.

  • Hypno Gum
  • Hypno Stick
  • Headline Prediction
  • Step Right Up!
  • She Loves Me ... She Loves Me Not
  • Mental Epic ...
★★★ $20
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A. Anderson
How to Make Magic Toys by A. Anderson

Containing full directions for making magic toys and devices of many kinds.

  • Jumping Jack
  • The Magic Mouse
  • The Indian Tumbler
  • The Dancing Dolls
  • The Skip-Jack
  • The Magic Cube Box
  • The Weather Prophets
  • The Rooking Ship
  • The Prancing Horse
  • The Automatic Tumblers
  • The Spring-board Dancing Sailor
  • The Automaton Smoker
  • The Bottle Imp
  • The Magic Candle
  • Dancing Marionettes
  • The Camera Obscura
  • The Magic Lantern
  • The Ludion
  • The Salamander, or the Dancing Ring
  • The Fountain Top
  • The Zoetrope
  • The Praxinoscope
  • A Magic Microscope
  • How to See Through a Brick Wall
  • To Show that Rays of Light do...
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Prof. Levani
Stage Illusions and Entertainments by Prof. Levani

Excerpt from the Preface:

This Handbook is unique in its way. It endeavours to explain the work of the amateur stage carpenter and scene-painter; it gives instruction on producing various stage noises and effects, has a well-illustrated chapter on the art of theatrical make-up, and, in addition, reveals the secret of black art or Oriental magic. It is also a detailed guide to the making and manipulation of manikins or marionettes, and shows how to build and manage a living marionette theatre and how to make ventriloquial dolls. Novelty entertainments, such as rag pictures, etc., and paper...

★★★★★ $10
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Robert D. LaRue, Jr.
Real Chinese for Magicians by Robert D. LaRue, Jr.

Own a unique book in magic literature. Why use a brightly painted box that has some random nonsense fake Chinese character on it when you can easily customize the box with actual, correct, traditional Chinese characters that mean something relevant to your routine? If the routine uses water, or fire, here are the correct characters. Plus much more: Dictionary of 200+ words relevant to magic; colors; dynasties; seasons; numbers; colors, directions for transferring the characters to your props; essay on performing an ethical ethnic act; directions for properly writing characters; two Romanization/pronunciation...

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Ken Allen
Do-It-Yourself Book by Ken Allen

Dealer-quality magic effects, props, hacks, and upgrades you can make at home.

This ebook was clearly ahead of its time, as the effects are classic and timeless. There's something in it for every magician. One effect, "A Stunning Transposition", if sold by itself at a dealer, would sell for twice what the entire book sells for. Even if you're all thumbs, the author's clear descriptions and illustrations make it easy to craft amazing effects, props, and utility items that you'll be proud to use and amaze with. Contains a nice variety of effects, tips, and practical suggestions for close-up,...

★★★★ $5
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Jerry Clowin
New Way Golf Ball in Glass by Jerry Clowin

Jerry Clowin has made a significant improvement to the method published in Golf Ball in Glass. It builds on that same basic method, but introduces an important refinement which allows you to overcome a bigger difference between golf ball diameter and jar opening. With this new method it is much less of a hit and miss, and the search for the proper jars has become a lot easier, too.

Besides safety equipment (safety glasses and gloves) you will need in particular three tools to accomplish this task. One tool pretty much every normal household has. The second tool is found in most workshops, the last one you...

★★★★ $19.90
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MP4 (video)

William W. Larsen
Thayer's Fifty Workshop Ideas by William W. Larsen

Here's a rare opportunity to obtain 50 of Thayer's ideas for tricks that they planned to release in the 1940s, but due to wartime restrictions, were unable to produce in large quantities. Back in the day, hundreds of magicians said: "Thayer, I wish I could go through your files. You must have hundreds of ideas stored away: tricks that magicians have sent you for sale and manufacture." And Thayer listened. In their files and desk drawers were literally hundreds of ideas. Some they sought out and paid for. Others were given to them. But because of wartime government priorities, it was impossible...

★★★ $10
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E. W. Bud Morris
Magic with Electronics by E. W. Bud Morris

Bud Morris had a creative mind. In this collection of effects he demonstrates how a bit of electronics allows you to perform miracles and entertain your audience.

  • Bud Morris … Who's He?
  • The Brain Wave Lamp
  • Oriental Caddy
  • Way Out-Er Limits
  • E.S.P. And The Joker Is Wild!
  • Mystic Black Ball
  • Remote Control Table
  • The Wheel Of Thought
  • Skull-Duggery
  • Electronic Equipment
1st edition 1973, 17 pages; PDF 27 pages.
★★★★ $7
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Tom Palmer
Rolon: Tom Palmer's Great Table by Tom Palmer

Build yourself this clever roll-on table that converts from a rolling suitcase to a roll-on magic table in less than 60 seconds.

A roll-on table adds to the attractiveness of your tricks and adds considerably to the efficiency and professional appearance of your act. So easy to build that the author claims you can have excellent results, even if this is your first magic building project. Detailed measurements and a complete listing of all materials is included. Everything has been figured out for you. These illustrated building plans take you step by step through the process, until your beautiful...

★★★★ $6
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Ralf (Fairmagic) Rudolph
Tensegrity by Ralf (Fairmagic) Rudolph

Build an "impossible" floating object from six playing cards and display it on your book shelf.

1st edition 2020, PDF 7 pages.

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Ralf (Fairmagic) Rudolph
Impuzzibles by Ralf (Fairmagic) Rudolph

You will learn the secrets and get detailed video instructions of how to make four impressive 'impossible' objects.

  • Spider Link
  • Checker Board
  • The Needle
  • Fork on Card
The Needle will impress anybody who ever tried to guide a thread through the eye of a sewing needle. To do this with one thread is often hard enough, but to do it with 20 or more threads certainly looks impossible. The secret is ingenious. You do not need anything special, no special tool or special contraption to accomplish this feat. It is all in the know-how, which you can acquire here.

The Fork on Card will impress...

★★★★ $12
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MP4 (video)

Eugene E. Gloye
Table Book II by Eugene E. Gloye

A beautifully illustrated ebook on tables and side stands for you to build. Gene Gloye uses the tag line, "without drapes", because all the tables described are used in many ways, but without cloth drapes.

The ebook begins with several pages of discussion on stage furniture and its possibilities, with illustrated advice on transporting it, plus storing it. The various multi-panel and single panel tables described in detail, with easy to follow building plans, often have diabolically clever "black art wells" and other secret devices. A "Night Club Table" is so simple and so useful, and so...

★★★★★ $14.95
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Ralf (Fairmagic) Rudolph
Impossible Braid Plus Variations by Ralf (Fairmagic) Rudolph

This is for advanced folders only, those who want to tackle some of the most difficult and at the same time most beautiful impossible folds there are. Ralf has developed a new method for the Robert E. Neale braided banknote which he is teaching on this video. He will also teach you variations to the braided banknote theme.

However the highlight of the video is the most astounding braid for the Borromean Cube. For this object there was no folding method in existence at all, until Ralf tackled the problem and came up with a remarkable solution. Please note that there is no cutting and gluing involved. (The...

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MP4 (video)

Ulysses Frederick Grant
A Table Lamp Floats by Ulysses Frederick Grant

This is included in Grant's Lost Illusion Secrets.

At last, anyone can own a floating lamp. You can have one right in your living room or den with no special lamp to buy. Yes, one of the lamps sitting around your home now can be made into a floating lamp for a few dollars.

EFFECT: Spectators see an ordinary lamp sitting on a table. You produce a covering cloth and place it over the lamp. The lamp then seems to float right up into space, high over their heads or down near the floor in a very strange manner. After its flight, it glides back to the table and once again comes to rest. This is actually what they see,...

★★★★ $2
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Dave Arch
Electronic Buzz Box by Dave Arch

Although you can find versions of these Electronic Monte boxes for sale on magic websites, I could not find one large enough for my needs nor one that included a buzzer (not just a light). So I built my own. In spite of the fact that my electronic knowledge only involves the ability to insert a plug into an outlet, I built my own the first time in under an hour for around $20.

The premise is simple. From among multiple buttons, you win if you can find the button that lights the light and sets off the buzzer. With the diagram included in my instructions you aren't limited to only three buttons...

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Ralf (Fairmagic) Rudolph
13 Cards by Ralf (Fairmagic) Rudolph

This package includes the templates and photos of 13 incredible 'impossible' cards. There are no instructions of how to fold the cards. For each card you get the template of how to cut the card as a PDF, and a photo of how the folded card looks like. We are assuming you know how to fold these cards. If you do not know check out Ralf Rudolph's various impossible folding videos. One that will get you started is Impossible Foldings Volume 2 (Part 1)

The 13 cards are:

  • 2-Framed
  • 3-Link
  • 3-Framed
  • 4-Linked
  • Arachnophobia
  • Card Sculpture
  • Hexagon
  • Rounded P-Link
  • Square Knot
  • Star Card
  • Tri-Clops
  • Two Swirled
  • Wave

1st edition...

★★★★★ $10
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Displaying 1 to 24 (of 72 products)
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