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Topic: Joe Porper's Strong Box!!!
Message: Posted by: Dr. Faust (Apr 13, 2005 01:38AM)
Hello Everyone,

I just purchased Joe Porper's Strong Box. I considered it for some time. After reading so many glowing reviews, I finally decided to get one for myself. Now, I must totally agree with so many others about the quality and design of this box. I know this item is not brand new to the market, but I believe it deserves public praise every time a new customer receives it. It is simply beautiful in appearance and built like a bank vault! It's also a prop that will easily last a lifetime and beyond. Yes, you'll be passing this one down for generations to come!

The method of entry is so ingenious that I believe no one will ever figure it out, even under the most detailed and thorough examination. I attempted to figure it out for over an hour after receiving it, without success. I never even got close to solving it. I finally gave up and resorted to the instructions. That level of difficulty was exactly what I was looking for, and I got it 100%! Yes, I was hoping I would have to look at the instructions, and, believe me, I did!

For something to be so solid and secured, the loading and unloading can be easily done in a flash. Yes, even a child could do it, after being shown how only one time! It requires no skill or practice. The only practice you may need is in the particular, unique routine you may develop with it.

Yes, this box is expensive, but considering the ingenious design and quality, I'd say it's worth every penny. It's destined to become a collector's item, for sure! I applaude Joe Porper for his creativity and dedication, taking magic to the highest levels for all of us.

Truly Satisfied and Thankful,

Dr. Faust
Message: Posted by: Roth (Apr 13, 2005 02:13AM)
I spent some time with Porpers Just a key before I finally gave up and had to read the instructions to find out how it worked.
Message: Posted by: runawayjag (Apr 13, 2005 12:12PM)
Both the Key and the Strongbox are great examples of ingenious engineering that Joe applies to most of his creations. Like everyone, he has an occasional "loser," but these two are not among them.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Apr 13, 2005 10:26PM)
I can't believe you guys don't read the instructions FIRST. I got a trick not long ago and figured I knew the work... and IMMEDIATELY BROKE IT... then reading the instructions it cautioned one to NOT do something...

Duh.... :kermit:
Message: Posted by: Dr. Faust (Apr 14, 2005 04:42PM)

Normally, I would do nothing less than thoroughly read the instructions first. As a general rule, I'd say you're absolutely right. However, I consider this one to be significantly different in at least a couple of big ways.

Some props are never meant to be examined at all. Some props can handle only brief or casual examination. That is not the case with the Strong Box. This one is definitely meant to be examined. The ability to have something stolen out of (or put into) this secure, and thoroughly-examined locked box is the major magic here. Without thorough examination, the magic is greatly diminished. So, I figure the best thing is for me to do the honors of being the first. I've been told that directions don't actually come with it anyway. The directions I read, which came with mine, appear to have been printed by the company that sold it to me, rather than by anyone from the Joe Porper company. I've even seen it listed on one site that says it doesn't come with directions. This suggests again that the customer's initial attempt at solution is encouraged. This way it can be experienced from the spectator's point of view and, thereby, be appreciated for its complexity all the more.

Next, this one can also thoroughly withstand a thorough examination. It is by no means delicate in any way that I have discovered. So, I figured I would go ahead and be the first to put it through a test that would meet or exceed any test from a spectator. It easily passed my test, without ever coming close to being broken or damaged. In the closed and locked position in which I examined it, I don't see any way it ever could be broken. Now, in the unlikely even that your spectator brings out a sledge hammer, that's a different story.

Those are just my thoughts on the examination of at least select props such as this. I suppose there are exceptions to everything, and magic is no exception.


Dr. Faust
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Apr 14, 2005 04:53PM)
OK. Funny at Porper's the other day he had a dozen or so Strong Boxes on the table and I couldn't figure out how to open one. (I do not own one so have never seen the instructions). :spinningcoin:
Message: Posted by: e-man (Apr 14, 2005 11:21PM)
I got mine through HP and instruction don't come with it.They have you call to get in the box.I played with it for hours... No clue. then I called HP.Extremely clever (but not so quiet)I love it non the less.
Message: Posted by: Bob Johnston (Apr 28, 2005 11:02PM)
The Strong Box is one of the most beautiful gimmicks I own. The one thing that makes it especially fun, is this. Through the years I have had countless boxes handed to me to see if I could figure out the loading.

If you have ever done that with a close magician friend, this box is unique. Hopefully, your friend will say “please unlock it to give me a better chance of finding the “entrance.”

Owners of this box will be smiling, knowing that the “examiner” has just stepped another quantum leap farther away from figuring it out.

I will be working the box from my pocket. There is a slight sound issue to work around, but it can be covered.

Message: Posted by: hkmagician (Apr 29, 2005 06:19AM)
The one I own don't have any sound .
Message: Posted by: Royston South (Apr 29, 2005 07:58AM)
Are you sure it's a Joe Porper Strong Box because mine makes a big chunk, took me a while to come up with a great routine, but that box is a killer.

Message: Posted by: Dr. Faust (May 3, 2005 01:36AM)

Yes, if yours really makes no sound, I also can't believe that you have the Porper box. However, if you are certain that you do have it, I'd sure be interested to know how this can be done silently. Please PM me, if you know something that I don't know.

Always curious,

Dr. Faust
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (May 4, 2005 01:50PM)
This morning at Porper's I fiddled with the box and found doing it upside down, with the open lid toward you, then fold the box down worked best FOR ME. You can have the box in a paper bag (with hole in back) and as you close box crumple bag and the bag noise covers other sounds.
Message: Posted by: e-man (May 4, 2005 02:07PM)
That's a Great idea Pete,Thank You!
Message: Posted by: Dr. Faust (May 5, 2005 12:46AM)
Yes Pete, I also like your paper bag solution! It's a way to provide cover in more ways than one. Thanks!

Dr. Faust
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (May 5, 2005 11:23AM)
Use of bag not my idea, Porper told me it was R. Paul Wilson's -- just wanted to pass it on.
Message: Posted by: Dr. Faust (May 6, 2005 02:06AM)
Okay, Pete, thanks to R. Paul Wilson for conceiving the idea, thanks to Porper for telling you, and thanks to you for passing it on. Thanks to everyone!

Always giving credit where it's due,

Dr. Faust
Message: Posted by: Bob Johnston (May 8, 2005 09:49PM)
I have figured out a way to minimize the sound problem with the Strong Box.

There is no way to adequately explain the process without jeopardizing the secret. If you are interested and own the box, and would like an alternative to the paper bag, PM me for another method.

To keep “non-owners” from learning more than is fair, I will step you through a question or two about the box to establish ownership and add your email address as there are 4 JPEG pictures.

Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (May 8, 2005 09:51PM)
Way to go... thanks for keeping tight.
Message: Posted by: cardfreakhk (May 13, 2005 02:51PM)
I wonder what kind of routine you will perform with it...
This is such a beautiful prop, if you take this STRONG BOX out from a paper bag... just feel a little bit strange...
I wish I could think of a good routine with this box, or some other ring boxes.
Message: Posted by: Julie (May 14, 2005 01:20AM)
...there's a Porper Strong Box on e-bay now.
Message: Posted by: cardfreakhk (May 14, 2005 06:18PM)
What do you mean Julie?
I think it is still available, isn't it?
Message: Posted by: Julie (May 14, 2005 06:24PM)
Of course it's still available> the e-bay mention was to alert potential buyers to what may be a bargain (and then again maybe not) :)
Message: Posted by: Alex Ng (May 15, 2005 01:07PM)
It will be so great if my "Porper's Key" can be used to open the lock of the Strong Box.
Message: Posted by: EGGINS (Jul 14, 2005 07:16AM)
I was told Gaetan Bloom had a terrific routine using Porper's Strong box; Does anyone know anything about it?
Message: Posted by: slydini62 (Jul 14, 2005 08:57AM)
The Porper Strong box may be one of my BEST magical purchases EVER!!! I'll try to email Mr. Bloom and ask him his routine using the Strong Box.
Message: Posted by: Michael Dustman (Jul 14, 2005 09:15AM)
Pete Biro is working on putting together the instructions now. He said he had just recently received the pictures and routine from Gaetan.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Jul 14, 2005 12:53PM)
Gaetan's routine is finished (the pre-press work) and tomorrow it goes to the printer. Should be ready in about a week. Not sure yet how to get this out to past box owners. Proof of purchase? Small fee? Will be thinking on that.
Message: Posted by: slydini62 (Jul 14, 2005 01:21PM)
The requestor should provide you information on how the box is utilized and it's secret.
Message: Posted by: CardMaker (Jul 14, 2005 01:52PM)
I own a Strong Box and I recommend(ed) THIS to everyone who is seriously interested in props like these. Yes, sound problem exists, but only if you make a big deal of it! I dang the lock against the box and say: THAT was what you heard!

I personal did last gig a ring vanish and let the ring appear in a previous shown empty wooden box. I was asked to do that again .... so I first had to prepare that wooden box; opening the side flap in full view - I let specators see what I am actually doing, but I didn't explain it! There was a big smile on every spectators face! Yes! Now they know how the ring gets into that wooden box...
So the 2nd ring vanish started; I pulled out the wooden box and let the spec open the box, but .... NO ring inside! I said I messed up that trick and would offer him a treasure! I went back 3 steps to table to pick up the Strong Box! Meanwhile they found the flap in the wooden box and discussed this type of tricky box.

When I then placed the Strong Box (closed) onto the table and all said something like "oh how cute...." I handed out the key, spec opened the box and inside was their ring!

Big applause and I let the Strong Box for about 10 minutes to the specs - no one got a clue! This must be real magic!

What I'd like to have as an additional extra for that box?
Something like Michael Hanzlik's (UK) WONDERLOCK or some other gaffed lock fitting the strong box - THIS would be clever! But until now I didn't find a supplier who offers small but gaffed locks. So if anyone of you has got an idea .... please contact me!

Overall: Strong Box is meant to own it a lifetime! So it is much cheaper than all the cards you destroy during your lifetime ;-)
Message: Posted by: magicinsight (Jul 14, 2005 02:01PM)

While I appreciate you sharing your routine and I do not mean at all to be critical, but I would personally not do the part of the routine where you openly show how the side of the wooden box opens up. In my humble opnion, you are in fact openly disclosing a secret to many of coin/ring/nest of boxes that are still being used by performers. Also you are openly confronting them to find the secret hinge, lock or passageway that would allow them access to the locked box. I think the Strong Box is a terrific efect that stands on its own without the need to prove that it cannot be secretly opened like the other "magic boxes." Please do not take offense at my comments.

Best regards,

Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Jul 14, 2005 04:25PM)
Agreed... and they will then think the Strong Box works in a similar way, but they just couldn't find the way to make it happen.

Those that want a copy of Gaetan's routine, PDF file, PM me with PROOF you own one and include an email address.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Jul 15, 2005 01:07PM)
The above offer expires Sunday. We are going to print them in a nice booklet form and include a "ferrule" similar, but better, than the one Gaetan rigged up in his prototype.
Message: Posted by: Robert M (Jul 15, 2005 07:17PM)
Sorry, but I'm a little confused. Is this going to be a marketed item? I have a Strong Box and would like to learn Gaetan Bloom's routine.

What's a ferrule?

Message: Posted by: Sean Comer (Oct 30, 2005 10:16AM)

Has the routine or handling of the strong box been produced yet? I have been looking around but have yet to find a place to purchase or view the handling. Do you know of a place where the booklet or .pdf you mentioned on Jul. 14 may be purchased?
Message: Posted by: Adam Keisner (Nov 4, 2005 12:34AM)
Can this strong box be used for 'card in box' by that I mean once you've done your mercury fold is it an easy matter to load the folded card into the box?
Also what about the Gatean Bloom routine is that out? Does it come with the box?

Message: Posted by: Roth (Nov 4, 2005 12:51AM)
On 2005-11-04 01:34, Adam Keisner wrote:
Can this strong box be used for 'card in box' by that I mean once you've done your mercury fold is it an easy matter to load the folded card into the box?
Also what about the Gatean Bloom routine is that out? Does it come with the box?

[/quote]If you pulled the box out of your pocket it would be locked shut with the card inside.
Message: Posted by: Adam Keisner (Nov 4, 2005 01:27AM)
Thanks R. So the box is small enough to fit in your trouser pocket? I was kinda under the impresseion it was bigger than that. Is it the same size as a deck of cards or bigger/smaller?? also is it heavy? too heavy to have comfortably in your jacket pocket?

Message: Posted by: Adam Keisner (Nov 4, 2005 01:29AM)
Would you be able to load the card under the guise of simply placing the key in the pad lock, then handing the box to the spectator and let them open it to reveal the impossible location??
Message: Posted by: Bob Johnston (Dec 7, 2005 11:03PM)
I am selling my wonderful Stron Box in the appropriate section of the forum, in mint condition.

Message: Posted by: Joshua Barrett (Aug 24, 2007 07:59AM)
I know this thread is old but I just want to add that I just got one of these, and it is fantastic. the routine is great and I'm currently been doing it for friends and such. more and more if come to love apperatus like this cause I am able to concentrate more on presentation and less on doing moves. iv become a huge porper fan the last few months, and have just ordered just a case. can;t wait to get it. thanks joe and pete for such good ideas!
Message: Posted by: Mike McErlain (Aug 24, 2007 04:06PM)
All this feedback is giving me ideas. I like using a Nest of Boxes and this will fit nicely into that routine.
Message: Posted by: mossymanmo (Feb 8, 2012 12:44PM)
Are there any reviews of the new Strong Box 2.0? I understand it works on a completely different principle from the original.
Message: Posted by: silverking (Feb 9, 2012 09:45AM)
The .v2 is a box with some modifications to the original locking mechanism, but it's [i]certainly not[/i] a completely different principle.

The original Strong Box was a Lippincott box, and the Strong Box 2 is a Lippincott box.

The "principle" is that of a Lippincott box.
Message: Posted by: martysh (Feb 9, 2012 10:02AM)
How recent was the revision?
6 months?

a year ago?

two years?

Message: Posted by: lucavolpe (Feb 9, 2012 12:07PM)
I am very tempted to use for a mentalism routine...but I don't know...how fast is the load?
Message: Posted by: rowdymagi5 (Feb 9, 2012 04:38PM)
I have the first version. It would be nice to know exactly what the improvements are? Otherwise, first version owners wouldn't know if the new version would be a better fit for them.
Message: Posted by: mossymanmo (Feb 9, 2012 09:54PM)
Cruiosity got the better of me and I received my Strong Box 2.0 today. First off, let me say that although it looks the same as the original s.b. the principle is completely different. You can do what you have to do on version 1 to attempt to open this box and nothing will happen. It is more on the style of a traditional lippincott box but with a major clever difference (actually 2 major differences). I don't think anyone would discover the secret no matter how long he plays with it. (The same is true of version 1 however). A downside, I guess, is that you can not do the excellent version 1 routine where the box is in a paper sandwich bag with an alligator clip holding the bag closed etc. etc. However a very simple but nice routine is included with version 2 where a borrowed ring is held by a spectator under a handerchief which turns out to be a key ring holding a small key. When the spectator, with that key, unlocks and opens the box the ring is inside. Which version is better? They are both excellent and as I said before, although identical in appearance very different in mechanics. Almost forgot to mention that you don't have the noise issue with version 2.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Feb 10, 2012 01:43AM)
Mossy hit it with his review.
Message: Posted by: rowdymagi5 (Feb 10, 2012 04:52AM)
Thanks Mossy, that's exactly what we that own the original were wondering about!
Message: Posted by: mossymanmo (Feb 10, 2012 08:24AM)
On 2012-02-10 05:52, rowdymagi5 wrote:
Thanks Mossy, that's exactly what we that own the original were wondering about!
I should also mention that unlike with the lippincott box, you don't have to go into the box to set it--the lid can be closed with the lock in place. Also you can reset it in about 2 seconds.
Message: Posted by: Joe Strantz (Dec 19, 2012 04:41PM)
Thanks to all for their thoughtful reviews. I've been considering purchasing one of the Porper "Strong Boxes" for quite some time now, but have held off bc they are somewhat pricey. I think after reading these reviews I will finally get one. Thanks again to all for the great information. Best, Joe.
Message: Posted by: Jedo (Dec 20, 2012 07:04PM)
I want one :)
Message: Posted by: Magic Mark (Nov 22, 2018 08:18PM)
Rather than start a new topic I thought it better to resurrect this one...

My magical passion was rekindled last week when I attended IBM Ring 76's swap meet. At the event I managed to score a great deal on a Porper Strong Box. It's been a prop that I've admired multiple times as I dipped my toes back into magic on and off over the last 10-15 years.

I am 100% certain this is a genuine Joe Porper (version 1) Strong Box. I've compared photos I've found on the web and it is NOT one of the knockoff boxes that are being sold.

Unfortunately, the purchase did not include the booklet containing the Gaetan Bloom routine. As I'm a bit of a completist, it would be nice to have the printed routine.

So, if anyone has an extra copy of the Gaetan Bloom routine or one you simply don't need anymore, I am interested in purchasing it from you for a fair price. Please send me a PM if you are so predisposed.


Message: Posted by: Magic Mark (Nov 23, 2018 09:34AM)
I emailed Gaetan Bloom a few days ago (to ask about getting a copy of his routine) and received a reply this morning. He wrote:

[i]Thanks for your mail
This box is really good...
Well, I have to say that I don't find it in my files, but I must have it somewhere...
of course, I wont charge you for that, it will be my pleasure....
If I don't find it, the best would be to ask Joe directly...
I am sure he will have it
Anyway, I let you know soon...[/i]

I actually reached out to Joe Porper a few days ago as well (through his Facebook page) and I'm hoping he will reply.

Message: Posted by: Magic Mark (Nov 26, 2018 11:31PM)
Update... Gaetan Bloom got back to me and attached a PDF of his routine that was included with the Porper Strong Box. He was really nice about it, proving again, that magicians are some of the nicest people on the planet!

Message: Posted by: FrankFindley (Jun 16, 2019 01:20PM)
Received one of these several months ago in a lot with other props and have been playing with it since. Just tried it today for first time live. Routine worked great so thought I would share in case others are looking for alternative ideas. It is a merge of bill change and bill tube ideas.

Borrowed $20 bill from audience member having them note last four digits of serial number while 'checking that it is real'. Did bill change saying towards end that I will turn it into a "one hundred" which they can keep instead. It was a $1 bill which I argued with them "is 100 pennies". They naturally ask if it can be changed back. "no, only works one way; scientists call it entropy. But it can be traded in for something equally valuable." Pulled out strong box from bag with their $20 bill in it. "You can trade it for what is in this box". Handed it to them to try and open. After few seconds of fiddling, handed them the key. Once out had them verify this bill was real by reading serial number, which of course proved it was their original bill.

It's nice in that you get the visual impact of bill change without the issue of having to change it back. Also, getting out the strong box provides a natural way to clean up that effect.
Message: Posted by: TomB (Jul 23, 2020 09:12AM)
Anyone else have any good routines, possibly including not using a bag.