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Topic: Locking Talking Slates by Lebanon Circle
Message: Posted by: Roni (Oct 7, 2010 06:59AM)
About a decade ago I have produced for my own use the "Locking Talking Slates". The idea was to let people properly hear the sound of the chalk (The Spirits) actually writing a message within the slates whilst a member of the party is holding the slates, and, I am standing away whilst the member of the party seperates the slates and read the message written by the Spirits without any interferance on my part.
I have kept The Locking Talking Slates as a secret for many years. In the past ten or so years I have only sold two sets to very close friends. However, I am very proud to announce that the Locking Talking Slates are now in production by Lebanon Circle and will be available for sale by Lebanon Circle very soon now.Why Lebanon Circle? simply because they are the best in producing such items as I am sure you all know. At the time I named the slates ABACUS SPIRITALIS. Many Bizarre Magicians and Mentalists asked me to re produce the slates but I kept the Slates a close guarded secret. Now that I have retired I am very pleased to release the Locking Talking Slates through Lebanon Circle knowing that the workmanship will be outstanding as all of Dan Baines products.
I am very excited about this and of course all of you that contacted me regarding the slates during the past years will now be able to purchase the Locking Talking Slates through Lebanon Circle.
With Dark Wishes
Message: Posted by: Stephen Young (Oct 7, 2010 07:31AM)
Oh Oh!
I sense an attack on my bank balance in the very near future.

I've been considering buying my first set of slates for about a week now.
this is timely indeed.

Any more info greatly appreciated

Message: Posted by: Chad C. (Oct 7, 2010 08:08AM)
Awesome! I am one who has heard about these and been interested in getting them! Glad to hear that Dan will be producing them.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Oct 7, 2010 08:15AM)
Hi Steve

I'm actually working on them right now, Roni kindly passed his Acacus Spiritalis to me last year and over the last few weeks I've dissected the design and revamped it with Roni's approval.

As you can expect they will be Victorian styled slates with an A4 chalk boardface on all 4 sides set in a aged mahogany frame. The BIG defining point about these slates is that they 'talk', so you actually hear and feel the chalk writing inside the slates once they are locked together. Not only this, the slates are programmable (without the need of a computer, the programmer is supplied) so you can add your own sounds to the spirit slates - whispering, scratching, knocking etc...

Pictures in about 2 weeks so watch this space....


Message: Posted by: Dr Spektor (Oct 7, 2010 08:39AM)
That is excellent news. I actually own an original set of the ABACUS SPIRITALIS and love them. I use them often in recreations of seances. Sounds like I can finally get a backup! Great news guys!
Message: Posted by: Stephen Young (Oct 7, 2010 09:14AM)
I'm actually doing my very first seance on October 30th.

A little apprehensive. But not too bad.

The slates will have to be for seance number 2 I think.

Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Oct 7, 2010 10:30AM)
Yep, sorry Steve, won't be ready for the 30th I'm afraid but for all of those who have been waiting all these years ABACUS SPIRITALIS is officially back in production!
Message: Posted by: Stephen Young (Oct 7, 2010 11:52AM)
No problem, Dan.
I think I've got my hands full as it is.

Just hope I can pull it off.

Message: Posted by: WayneCapps (Oct 7, 2010 12:57PM)
Wow! This sounds great. You are producing some top quality stuff Dan! Any idea of the price point yet?
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Oct 7, 2010 02:49PM)
Not yet Wayne, still pricing up the prototype, but as a guide Roni's originals were about £500 I think but the LC ones won't be as expensive as this.

There is also an old ABACUS SPIRITALIS thread here for those interested...


Message: Posted by: Roni (Oct 8, 2010 08:25AM)
I am very pleased to see the interest generated by the release of one of my very convincing Spirit effects ABACUS SPIRITALIS. When you purchase the Spirit Slates you will have one of the best items created for Seance, Bizarre and Mentalism.
I also know that Dan (Lebanon Circle)will do a great and authentic job producing them. It took me a decade to agree on the release of the Spirit Slates and I know you will be delighted with them.
All the very best
Message: Posted by: WayneCapps (Oct 17, 2010 06:35PM)
Any update on this? I can't wait to see the pictures.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Oct 18, 2010 01:35AM)
About another 2 weeks Wayne, I'm just waiting on a last minute aesthetic 'cherry on the cake'.

I will also showcase them at Tabula Mentis in November so folk can get their hands on them, I also believe Roni will perform with them...
Message: Posted by: FairieSnuff (Oct 18, 2010 10:30AM)
Ive seen Roni perform with these twice, once at Tabula Mentis in Novemner 2008 and last year at his magic circle lecture. They really do enhance any spirit writing effect.

I tried to purchase a set after the November lecture but they were unavailable :o(, glad to see they are about to come back and via Dan which is double hurrah !!

Message: Posted by: Roni (Oct 18, 2010 05:25PM)
It took me some time to find a place in my heart to release my Locking Talking Slates. After seeing what Dan from Lebanon Circle is capable of making I have decided to ask Dan if he would be willing to manufecture my slates and he accepted. So not only that my Locking Talking Slates will be released soon but Dan managed to improve on my original slates and make them much more believable.
As a result I have released to Dan and through Dan to the buyers of the slates my unique routine whereby the "Spirits" helps the individual taking part to select a certain colour chalk and the chalk writing within the slates is of the same colour chalk chosen by the individual. This means that if your "Seater" chooses a Pink coloured chalk this chalk goes between the slates and indeed the "Spirit" message inside the slates appears in PINK! This is a very convincing routine and very original. Think of that:
They select the colour of the chalk with the help of the "Spirits". The Chalk goes amongst the slates. The "Spirits" are asked to write a message inside the closed slates. Everyone hears the message being written by the "Spirits" within the slates. When the Slates are opened by the seater (Not by you) The message within the slates is written in the same colur chalk that the seater have selected.
The "Spirits" are of course under your "Command" at all times.
Message: Posted by: illusioneer (Oct 18, 2010 09:23PM)
I. Need. These.

I have a feeling that in the right hands - You could bring an entire theatrical audience to tears.
Message: Posted by: takeachance (Oct 19, 2010 02:35AM)
What sort of approximate price range is being discussed
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Oct 19, 2010 05:43AM)
Still pricing up the parts and build time so I'll have a price once the photos are up...
Message: Posted by: Showmethatagain (Oct 19, 2010 12:48PM)
Gimmy gimmy gimmy gimmy................ Pleeeeease
Message: Posted by: Roni (Oct 20, 2010 04:54PM)
I can promise you that it will not be long now...... :)
Message: Posted by: takeachance (Nov 1, 2010 02:53PM)
Any news on these or even better, photo's
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 1, 2010 03:45PM)
Tomorrow! Blackboard paint is just drying!
Message: Posted by: illusioneer (Nov 2, 2010 05:29PM)
With bated breath I wait.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 2, 2010 06:43PM)
Well here you go then!

The pair of double sided spirit slates with chalk bag and slate stands (great for stage use)...



Etched brass detail on all four sides...


Etched brass name plate (I had some space on the etch pattern so you get a totally useless but very nice looking name plate!)...



Due to overwhelming demand for Dolly Darko and the Ectometron the slates will not be ready to ship until early 2011 but as with all of my effects I only make them in small batches (or waves). If anyone is interested in one of the first ten off the production line then e-mail me to reserve your copy.

Just to recap, the Abacus Spiritalis Slates are self working, no remote control is used and they are fully programmable for adding yur own sounds such as spirit voices, raps etc as well as the standard sound of writing chalk, no PC is required and the programmer unit is supplied. They will retail at £399.99.

A webpage will be up on the Lebanon Circle site shortly with more info and a demo video.

All the Beast!

Message: Posted by: illusioneer (Nov 2, 2010 06:57PM)
Early 2011 is juuust fine Mr. Baines. Gives me plenty of time to save my pennies (US pennies, that is)

WOW. These leave me absolutely speechless.

There are really no words to describe the precise antique beauty with which you've captured late 19th century Spiritualism.

Congrats Lebanon Circle!
Message: Posted by: WayneCapps (Nov 2, 2010 09:11PM)
I think they look great Dan! Well one, can't wait to see the video!
Message: Posted by: Showmethatagain (Nov 3, 2010 05:36AM)
Very elegant! How do you do fella.
Message: Posted by: Mind_Magic (Nov 3, 2010 09:56AM)
Looks great!
Want to see the demo video too.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 3, 2010 09:58AM)
Five sets will be available in January, followed by five in February etc...

Glad you like them!
Message: Posted by: Sandstar (Nov 3, 2010 11:56AM)
This looks beautiful. I'm looking forward to a review. Does the board look and feel like a real chalk board and does the writing look like real chalk? Can it be erased in a normal way?
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 3, 2010 01:06PM)
They are real chalk boards and use real chalk so yes, it all looks very real (because it is!)
Message: Posted by: Vic Nadata (Nov 3, 2010 02:39PM)
Looks great Dan!!!
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 4, 2010 05:36PM)
Thanks Vic!

Something I forgot to add - The slates can be used twice!  Never seen before in the world of magic Abacus Spiritalis can be performed twice without a reset!

The performer presents two regal Victorian chalkboard slates which are shown to be blank on all four sides.  The spectator is then asked to randomly select a coloured chalk from a bag.  The initials of a deceased comrade are written on the boards, one letter on each board.  The boards are placed together with the chalk placed between the slates.  The performer requests that if the spirit of the deceased is present to please leave a message for us.  The spectator holds the slates and the eerie sound of slow writing on a blackboard emanates from the boards.  Other members of the group place their hands upon the slates and feel the vibrations as the chalk writes its ghostly message.  Once the sound has finished the slates are parted to reveal a message from the deceased.  The performer asks if they have another question for the spirit, they reply “yes!” and the effect is repeated…

Preorders being taken now, just e-mail me - 3 sets of the first run of 5 left, just e-mail me for details....
Message: Posted by: Roni (Nov 6, 2010 08:25AM)
The slates are shouting quality. Those that saw me demonstrating my own slates of years gone by, will see the huge differance between the "Old" and Dan's slates.
To be honest sometimes I wish I had never agreed to put them on the market and I believe that it was because of the unique quality props that Lebanon Circle put out that I have agreed to re produce the "Locking Talking Slates".
Remember: you will recieve slates that not only deliver the "Shiver" when they can hear the "Spirits" writing the message with the same colour chalk the spectator chooses, you can immidiatly repeat the effect and get a second message written by the "Spirits" with a different coloured chalk if you so wish.
Although the Slates look and feel Victorian believe me they are 21st Century slates and of course they are hand made by Dan Baines of Lebanon Circle.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 6, 2010 01:29PM)
Webpage and demo video will be up tomorrow!
Message: Posted by: aligator (Nov 6, 2010 01:39PM)
Beautiful looking slates. Something to place on the "futures" list for sure.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 6, 2010 05:21PM)
Ok folks, page up and running with a quick demo vid........



Message: Posted by: vanitywilde (Nov 7, 2010 01:47PM)
Incredibly exciting Dan! No posts on this threat measure up to actually seeing the video and hearing the chalk.

I am all in !

Vanity Wilde
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 7, 2010 02:22PM)
Glad you like 'em! You get a few different chalk sounds, some short, some long just in case you plan on writing a novel on the slates!

You can also edit the delay between handing the slates to the spectator and the actual sound coming from them (and just to confirm, the sounds come fron the slates, nowhere else!)

Message: Posted by: Ben Harris (Nov 7, 2010 02:50PM)
Hi Dan,

Simply amazing work, my friend. Jaw-dropping.

Message: Posted by: illusioneer (Nov 7, 2010 07:08PM)
Just a question and if it delves too deep - please feel free to PM.

Does the two sound bites have to be the same both times (assuming you repeat the routine for a second time for the same sitters)? Could it be chalk writing one time and possibly voices the second?

Message: Posted by: WayneCapps (Nov 7, 2010 07:14PM)
Wow, just great Dan!
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 8, 2010 12:11AM)
To answer your question Illusioneer, yes, it's the same sound file both times...
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 8, 2010 12:25AM)
Ok, the first 5 sets have gone. I'm still taking reservations for February though - these are going to be popular!
Message: Posted by: Joshua J (Nov 8, 2010 12:50PM)
They look excellent and look a good size too. Top stuff.
Message: Posted by: Todd Robbins (Nov 8, 2010 01:14PM)
Religions have been started with less than these. Henry Slade must be smiling.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 9, 2010 02:46AM)
Reservations now being taken for the March batch -

Imagine asking the spirits to write a message and then knock twice on the the slates when they have finished - all possible!
Message: Posted by: Christopher Gould (Nov 9, 2010 03:45AM)
This looks wonderful - I am saving up my pennies!
Message: Posted by: Roni (Nov 10, 2010 07:54AM)
I understand from Dan (Lebanon Circle) that the slates are going fast. With Dan being a one man band the sooner you will put your order in the better.
All the very best
Message: Posted by: illusioneer (Nov 12, 2010 11:02AM)

Could you PM me with reservation/purchasing procedure? I understand you're taking reservations for March 2011 wave, correct?

Thank you!

Justin G
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Nov 14, 2010 06:39AM)
Hi Justin

Just e-mail me via my website on the contacts page, March has sold, so has April but I may be able to make more once the production line begins.


Message: Posted by: jonnyboy (Mar 12, 2011 01:42PM)
Just received mine from the first wave. Simply put, the slates are masterfully rendered, and work perfectly and easily. The sounds of the chalk scraping against the board is perfect. The DVD, while not containing performances, is complete and very clear on seemingly all aspects of setup, use and care, with suggestions of resources for slate effects. If talking slates are what you are looking for, you won't be disappointed in the slightest.

Message: Posted by: Chad C. (Mar 12, 2011 09:50PM)
Just got mine as well. Watched the dvd and can't wait to start playing with them! Very nice. Between that and a new snake I have had a good day today. Now off to bed so I can play with these over the next couple of days.

Great job Dan!
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Mar 18, 2011 02:52AM)
Thanks everyone! The first 15 slates have been shipped and the reception has been overwhelming. The reserve list grows daily, as one of my customers said "If Rolls Royce made Spirit Slates they'd probably be like this!"

Thanks again!


Lebanon Circle
Message: Posted by: Wizard of Oz (Mar 18, 2011 07:59PM)
Hey Dan,
My interests tend to lean toward the darker side of our craft simply due to believability. I'm a graphic designer by trade, so I'm trained to understand the importance of how things look. When an audience sees a magician take out painted props with stenciled spray painted designs, they know they are about to see a magic show. No problem. Nothing wrong with that. But when witnesses see a mentalist, psychic, medium...take out relics that appear as fine as yours...they take a second look. Combined with a great performance, suddenly, these people are witness to an event, not a show. They are about to see an experiment that can quite possibly go very, very wrong. Your props exude that sense of despair...and I mean that as a compliment.

I've only just begun to visit this forum on the Café, and am discovering that it may turn out to be my favorite. I've already pumped many a disposable dollar into several other similar on-line sellers of spiritual wares, and am pleased (my wife will disagree here) to realize I have another remarkable source to dispose of more. In other words, I found your site here...it is mind-blowing...I will spend money...I will amaze people...non-professionally, but amaze them none-the-less.

Thank you for taking the time to care about your craft, and those who practice it.
Message: Posted by: Clifford the Red (Mar 19, 2011 12:44AM)
Dan, those slates are beautiful. I will need to be opening my wallet again for the Lebanon Circle!

Wizard, then you'll also want to join Dan and the rest of the bizarre gang on the Bizarre Magick group on Facebook and don't forget the yellow board which is all bizarre and chock full of the dark side (run by Dan Mindo and David Parr!)
Message: Posted by: Lord Freddie (May 21, 2011 01:25AM)
These are high on my list (once I have the money for them), incredible work which would be a highlight of my seance shows.
Message: Posted by: Sean-Paul (May 28, 2011 01:36PM)

Selfishly I don't want to sing the praises of you item - because I want to be the only who has it - but I know that in order for you to continue to create fantastic pieces like this - you need to continue to prosper. How about I tell everyone how great your spirit slates are you and then you discontinue making them - and sell them something else!

Seriously, the entire experience of working with Dan (who at times can be challenging to connect with) was top notch. The prop is both beautiful and brilliant, the packaging and attention to detail was first class. The craftmanship and the design is very impressive. And the DVD that comes with it is very comprehensive.

I will admit that when I order my slates - I thought they were expensive - now that I have them - I am wondering if there is a profit margin. Dan goes way beyond the call of duty. I am sure that I will be putting in a order for "Dolly Darko" in the very near future. Working with Dan and receiving his product was been nothing short of a real pleasure.

If you want to see the slates in action - come visit us at Intrigue Theater in Eureka Springs, AR at the Queen Anne Mansion. We Open June 10th.
Message: Posted by: lucavolpe (May 28, 2011 02:38PM)
Dan, is not only a great friend, but is also a great and clever thinker! All his props are absolutely a beauty!
Message: Posted by: Chad C. (May 29, 2011 09:15PM)
Used this in it's first performance this past week for a hundred middle schoolers. The girl holding the slates was absolutely freaking out which in turn had the audience absolutely freaking out. It was great! She swore not only that she could hear the chalk but also feel it moving around as well...nice.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (May 30, 2011 11:01AM)
Thanks for the wonderful feedback everyone! To most it would seem that Lebanon Circle is taking a back seat with not much gossip on the forums and newsletters, the truth is that I'm so busy making slates and dolls that I've not even had chance to officially release Swami II and Crookes' Residual Ectometron (which have both sold out pre release!).

It's been great to hear that the performances are going well and may they continue!



Lebanon Circle
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Oct 19, 2011 12:27AM)
The slates are now retired, no further copies will appear from the LC studio BUT I do have something very interesting to take their place!
Message: Posted by: Chad C. (Oct 22, 2011 09:35PM)
On 2011-10-19 01:27, LebanonCircle wrote:
The slates are now retired, no further copies will appear from the LC studio BUT I do have something very interesting to take their place!

Can't wait to hear what that is! I have used the slates in several performances over the last few weeks and the reaction on stage when the volunteer hears and "feels" the writing is priceless...and it is contagious as the entire audience of sometimes several hundred get freaked out due to the volunteer's describing what is happening to them...

Good stuff. Glad to know I have one of the few...

Message: Posted by: Lord Freddie (Oct 23, 2011 04:23AM)
It's a shame the slates are being discontinued but then it also makes them more exclusive for those that are using them.
Message: Posted by: maps (Oct 23, 2011 09:12AM)
Wow,I am glad I bought one!
Message: Posted by: Lefebure (Oct 23, 2011 09:56AM)
On 2011-10-23 10:12, maps wrote:
Wow,I am glad I bought one!
Me too. I was already proud and felt lucky, now I have one more reason !
Message: Posted by: necroloid (Oct 23, 2011 12:27PM)
D'oh! Ordered one, but it seems my notification got lost in the bowels of of my eamail account a few months back!! :( ( I am so used to waiting for my props I did not think to ask Dan) Well I am glad Dan was not stuck with it. Congrats to those lucky few!
Message: Posted by: celticninja (Jan 4, 2012 04:42PM)
I am also glad I bought them as they do well in my show. People always love the chalk scratching before seeing the actual writing. If I new they would be gone so soon I would have bought more.
Message: Posted by: LebanonCircle (Jul 11, 2018 07:50AM)
For those who missed them the first time, a new improved set has just been released...


Available here...



Message: Posted by: Philemon Vanderbeck (Jul 11, 2018 03:01PM)
Sigh . . . by the time I save enough money to afford them, they'll be sold out. :-(
Message: Posted by: professortango (Jul 13, 2018 03:12PM)
Oh that's so tempting!
Message: Posted by: Merlinsmagic (Jul 14, 2018 05:00PM)
Well I took the plunge, missed out the previous ones but looks like these are much better. Hoping I got one of the 1st 30 with the extra bonus effect being offered by Dan.....
Once the order is processed I'll get a coa number & know if I did, fingers crossed !
Message: Posted by: TheTableTopTrixta (Sep 8, 2018 04:23PM)
Does anyone have a set of the improved ones for sale. I missed out.
Message: Posted by: Merlinsmagic (Sep 8, 2018 05:56PM)
They're still in final production, supposed to be shipping some next week or so. You may have a awhile before anyone puts there's up on the 2nd hand market or wait til next year for batch 2.......
Message: Posted by: Jbond207 (Nov 23, 2020 10:34PM)
I have order a set of slates. Can’t wait to get them!
Message: Posted by: Philemon Vanderbeck (Nov 24, 2020 09:05AM)
You're going to love them.

My set is just waiting for the moment I can start doing séances for the public again.
Message: Posted by: Magic Mark (Feb 10, 2021 10:00AM)
I ordered a set of Ragged School Slates back in October and they are finally scheduled for delivery today (according to FedEx). I can't wait to freak out my wife. :)

Hopefully, by Summer, we'll be able to safely gather in groups and I'll have a chance to perform with these awesome props.

Message: Posted by: Magic Mark (Feb 11, 2021 11:09AM)
FedEx was mistaken (yesterday) and my slates are out for delivery today. This morning I received a document from Dan with links to videos that explain every detail of the V2 Ragged School Slates. One of the videos showed the build of the version 1 slates, I am pleased with the changes that have been made. If you are familiar with the details/features of Ghost in the Machine III, then you have an idea of what is changed for the V2 Ragged School Slates.

Message: Posted by: Dr. O (Feb 11, 2021 12:05PM)
I would consider the change an upgrade. Still an awesome prop and your anticipation will be rewarded with many happy hours of experimenting/playing.