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Author Archives: chris ballinger

  • Time Lapse

    Posted on April 15, 2008 by chris ballinger

    Last Monday we set our camera to take a picture every 2 seconds and aimed it at one of our packing tables. The result was this little video. Hope you enjoy:

    Right now we pack a little over ten of these tables a day. Each full table is 33 orders and can take anywhere from 20 minutes to 1 hour to complete.

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  • Card Trick of the Week

    Posted on April 7, 2008 by chris ballinger

     "Strangers' Gallery"

    The Effect: A blue deck of cards is shown. Three prediction cards are removed by the performer and a fourth card is selected by a spectator. When shown, all four cards are seen to be duplicates. One by one the backs of these four cards change colors: one is black, another is yellow, and the last is the inverse of a regular card. After these four impossible changes, the deck is spread to show that all of the other cards have changed to red-backs.



    I like the freedom to hand my props to a skeptical spectator at any time; as a result I rarely use trick cards. For this trick, I make an exception. The visual surprise of a three never-before-seen bicycle colors send spectators gasping. And the final reveal that the entire deck has changed colors is superb.

    Watch the Demo:

    The craftsmanship of the gimmicks is unrivalled while the instruction booklet is comprehensive and thorough. Several subtleties are described to ensure the maximum impact.

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  • Tips on Sponges

    Posted on April 5, 2008 by chris ballinger

     Sponge balls are excellent because they are simple enough to perform for young audiences, but also fool adults. They also pack small and play big. The most important thing is that you stay one step ahead of the audience.

    Here are a few tips on sponge products that you might find helpful:

    A huge problem that you might run into with Sponge Balls is that they get warped or creased when they are packed away.

    Try using a bag instead of a box. A cloth bag will allow the balls to naturally maintain their shape instead of forcing them to conform to the shape of a box.

    Use some hallow plastic Easter eggs. Find some of those cheap plastic Easter eggs and make sure they are a little bigger than the sponge balls that you use. The hard shell will ensure that, even when thrown into a trunk or drawer, your sponge balls stay spherical.

    Sponge balls collect the oils from your finger tips. The porous surface often picks up discolorations and diseases, especially when you have multiple spectators handle the balls. 

    A great way to rejuvenate your sponges is to soak them in warmish water before a show. This allows the pores to expand to their fullest levels. The sponge prop will get larger, more vibrant, and softer. Just make sure you allow them to dry fully before using them in a show.

    Every once in a while it is a good idea to clean your sponges in a bowl of water with a very small amount of color-safe deturgent. This should protect the vibrancy and keep them clean.

    Be sure that your routine builds on itself. Don't start off a routine with an unbelievable effect and let it dwindle down. Start strong, but be sure you end stronger.

    A great way to end a routine is to have an explosion of balls at the end. Just place two or three balls into a spectator's hand with a secret load of four or five more. When they open their hand there is an explosion of balls.

    An easier ender is to have the ball change into a large sponge rabbit or split into a black ball and red cube. Both of those effects are available here at Magic Geek under the names Bug Bunny and Color Changing Ball to Square.

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  • 200+ Videos

    Posted on March 28, 2008 by chris ballinger

    We just posted our 200th video on youtube. But we didn't stop there, oh no... as of today we have 225 videos posted on youtube and most of them were produced in-house.

    If you haven't subscribed to our videos yet you should click here: 

    By clicking "Subscribe" you will be updated whenever a new demo is posted. This is a great way to get the first look at new products as they come into the store.

    We also encourage you to rate and comment on our videos. Let us know how we are doing right and what can change.

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  • Card Trick of the Week 6

    Posted on March 6, 2008 by chris ballinger

    The Rising Card

    Creepy, visual card magic that is simply impossible. The effect: A card is selected and lost in the pack. Slowly one card rises from the middle of the deck and is shown to be the spectator's card. Depending on which version of the trick you use, it can be done with the deck in the performer's hand, the spectator's hand, or leaning up against something.



    We carry two versions of this effect at the store: the Rising Card and Kundalini Rising. There are also several other handlings in print that use sleight of hand exclusively. The advantage of using a clever gimmick in this case is that the effect can be done while the cards are not being held by the magician.

    We've been asked many times what the difference is between Kundalini Rising and the Rising Card. So here it goes:

    The Rising Card is self working. The cards can be fanned out and freely shown, they can be cut, but they can not be thoroughly examined by the spectator.

    Kundalini Rising, on the other hand, is not self working; it takes some sleights and practice. Kundalini Rising also offers the ability to perform the effect with a borrowed deck.

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  • Insane International Rate Released

    Posted on February 22, 2008 by chris ballinger

    For fourteen years we have been trying to find a better shipping solution for our international customers. After working closely with all of our carrier options we have finally made a deal with FedEx that we are extremely happy with.



    We now offer an express international option with a $19 (USD) flat rate. That means you can order your package and receive it in 2-4 business days for a low flat rate that includes shipping, handling, and brokerage fees.

    We've done the math and found this to be the quickest and easiest method to ship at a competitive price.

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  • Strange New Coin Trick

    Posted on February 11, 2008 by chris ballinger

    Looking for something new in coin tricks? How about sticking a coin into your eye socket and having it completely vanish? Magic is being twisted into new shapes by performers like Criss Angel and Cyril Takayama and iVanish fits the new mold.

    The DVD covers several possibilities with the new move including three different methods for rubbing a real coin into your eye and making it disappear completely. Two full routines are also described, one where the coin passes from one eye to the other and the other ends with the performer "popping" their eyeball, letting the coin fall out amongst the slimy goo.

    The effect does require some experience with coins, but the DVD covers even the most basic components of the trick and with a little practice, you'll be performing it in no time. Ben Seidman is an excellent teacher and the production quality is far better than most instructional DVDs for magic.

    This is highly recommended to the street or sideshow performer or if you just want to freak people out at parties. Finally a trick where the eye is quicker than the hand.

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  • Card Trick of the Week 5

    Posted on January 23, 2008 by chris ballinger

    Oil and Water

    A selection of red cards and black cards are repeatedly mixed or shuffled. When spread the cards are seen to have separated, red to one side and black to the other.

    A classic in magic that has endless possibilities in performance as well as execution. The trick can be done with the whole deck or as a packet effect with six or eight cards. The different variations allow for a magician of any skill level to make up an impressive routine. It uses ungaffed cards and is a nice releif from the 'Pick a Card' sort of tricks.

    If you're a beginner looking to learn an easy Oil and Water routine, check out Mark Wilson's Complete Course in Magic. Page 101 goes over a very easy version of the trick using the cards ace through three in red and four through six in black. At the end of the routine, not only have the colors separated, but the cards are organized in numerical order.

    Chris Performing his Oil and Water Routine.

    If you can get your hands on a copy of Commercial Carney there is a packet effect that ends with the entire deck separating after an audience member shuffles it.

    Michael Ammar's Easy to master Card Miracles Volume 6 includes instruction on Roy Walton's "Oil and Queens" where spot cards separate and then turn into queens. A great twist on an already excellent trick.

    What are your favorite Oil and Water routines? Have you made up your own? Feel free to send us video of you performing your best stuff.

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  • Explosive Mentalism

    Posted on January 15, 2008 by chris ballinger

    We have a new mentalism effect in the store and it's a lot of fun. The effect is this. You take a light bulb - ANY light bulb and concentrate on it. It unexpectedly explodes with a loud pop and shatters to the floor. Original Exploding Light Bulb comes from the creative mind of Yigal Mesika (Loops, Spider Pen, Electric Touch) and Elian Agaian (Final Book Test). And it is quickly becoming my favorite mentalism routine.

    This effect has its limitations, as there are glass shards involved, I wouldn't recommend it for a restaurant show; but it is great for the street, stage, parlor, or impressing your friends and coworkers. The sound of the explosion gets attention and if you build it up, it can be very startling. No one expects the light to actually explode, so when it happens there is an instant audience reaction.

    The method is so simple and so well thought out that it is reminiscent of a classic magic effect. The light can be examined and turned on before the effect. You can even go into someone's house and borrow one of their lights. You never have to touch the glass of the bulb and there are no fishy moves before the explosion.

    NOTE: This effect involves real shattered glass. It is not intended for minors and is recommended for professionals only. Precautions must be taken to avoid harming performer and audience. Magic Geek Inc. is not liable for any injuries or damage to property that might result for using this product.

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  • Are You a David Blaine Fan?

    Posted on January 9, 2008 by chris ballinger

    We just got our hands on some very unique decks from David Blaine's personal stock: The Split Spade Collector's Decks. The black and white design is very classy and kind of spooky. Printed by the U.S. Playing Card Company with a Cambric Finish, so you know that they will be the highest quality in look and feel.

    Each deck boasts David Blaine's signature design with his initials hidden in a Split-Spade design. We carry them in as set of two decks. One deck is white with a black design and the other is black with an inverted white design. One of the decks in every set is autographed by David Blaine himself.

    These cards come with no gaffs or gimmicks; but the eerie design, devoid of all color, will bring your card tricks to the level of card miracles. And since you get two decks, you can perform with one of them and leave the seal unbroken on the signed deck as a collector's item.

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