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Topic: Durania Balls
Message: Posted by: KeirRoyale (Dec 17, 2003 03:35PM)
Does anyone know the lastest on the manufacturing of the Durania Balls (Made famous by the late Richard Ross). I know they are out of production but if anyone knows of any resources for finding a set or if you have any info regarding if they might be made again in the future please let me know.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Dec 18, 2003 12:26AM)
Seems to me Stevens magic had some.... :cucumber:
Message: Posted by: stephenbanning (Jan 3, 2004 12:58PM)
I've seen them on Ebay twice in the past two or three years. They fetched a hefty price.

Stephen

There's another post on this somewhere. Apparently Steven's sold them a few years ago, but not any more.
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Jan 7, 2004 12:55AM)
Stevens Magic had Viking Magic make them, because of all the inquires after the Richard Ross tape. Joe Stevens tried to find the gimmick in Europe but could not find them, thus Viking. He added balls from Fakini to complete the set, available only in white.

I would imagine because it took so long to sell his first supply, is why the were never remade. I inquired with Joe Stevens several years ago and as of then he did not have any plans to have any more made. They orginally sold for $90.

At this point, depending on how bad you think you need them, advertise on line and in the magic magazines. Then offer a price that cannot be refused!

Bill :magicrabbit:
Message: Posted by: oldwilson_2000 (Jul 28, 2004 06:19AM)
I'm a bit late with this, but the inventor was the late Werry (Werner Geissler) from Germany, who was very upset about Richard Ross stealing his idea. I talked to Werry many years ago. His set was dark red, so the rim of the gimmick was less visible. He found it not very clever to have the balls made in white for this reason. Btw: The name "Durania" comes from the city of Düren, where Werry lived.
Message: Posted by: Philipp K (Jul 28, 2004 12:34PM)
Moin Frank,
hast Du ne Ahnung, ob man die Bälle noch irgendwo in Deutschland bekommt?
Stolina führt Sie nicht , oder?

For all the other viewers:
A translation isn't necessary, as my post is about the German market.

Cheers,
Philipp
Message: Posted by: oldwilson_2000 (Jul 28, 2004 12:45PM)
Hi Philip,

I PM'ed you my info on the Durania ball trick. Unfortunately, the shell is practically impossible to get anymore. Werry died some years ago and he had stopped manufacturing the set some decades before already. To the best of my knowledge, no other dealer ever sold this set.
I don't know anything about Richard Ross's set (except, of course, that he obviously stole the idea).

Best

Frank
Message: Posted by: Kendrix (Jul 31, 2004 09:54AM)
I have asked the folks at Steven's many times to let me know when the Durania balls would be available and never heard any followup. This began right after the Richard Ross tape was released.
Message: Posted by: Dave Dorsett (Jul 31, 2004 04:29PM)
Actually, Douglas~Wayne Illusioneering manufactured the Durania Ball gimmicks for Stevens during the '90s. The shells are extremely difficult to make, requiring extensive hand-fitting of each set.
The drawback is the gimmick can fairly easily get knocked "out of whack", especially if you happen to drop it during the extensive rehearsal needed to handle them convincingly.
Stevens has "exclusive rights" to the Duranias from Richard Ross. If anyone has manufacturing rights from Werry, that's another story.
The dark red would make a lot of sense because the rim can be quite noticeable in the white.
Message: Posted by: oldwilson_2000 (Aug 1, 2004 05:08AM)
I can upload a photo or two of that dark red shell on my website and PM you the URL, if you like. I just sold my (original) durania shell on ebay for more than 40 Euros.
Message: Posted by: RiserMagic (Aug 1, 2004 11:55AM)
Da ve_Dorsett;
I missed something here. How did Joe Stevens get "exclusive rights" to the Duranias from Richard Ross - if the items were not Ross's to begin with? This seems rather strange.

I have been considering making these; but have held off due to such "rights claims" (which seem questionable at best). Various people claiming all kinds of "rights" in magic has become ridiculous.

oldwilson_2000, did Werry have family I could contact concerning obtaining legit rights?

Jim
Message: Posted by: Dave Dorsett (Aug 1, 2004 09:11PM)
Jim,
Those were Joe's words when he contacted us about manufacturing them for him in the '90s. At that time any claims by Werry were not known in the U.S. As Richard Ross had staked whatever claim, legit or not, prior to those coming to light there was no reason to doubt him. Joe has always been square with me. You'll note I have thrown quotation marks around exclusive rights since coming across this thread.
I did get a little chuckle out of the statement that "...claiming all kinds of 'rights' in magic has become ridiculous" while making a pitch for manufacturing rights. For my part, I certainly never want to make them again! Labor intensive and expensive to boot took a great deal of the lustre out of the project.
Dave
Message: Posted by: RiserMagic (Aug 1, 2004 09:29PM)
Dave;
There is a big difference in claiming some sort of rights and actually having them. I know one manufacturer who claims the rights to virtually everything - even items in the Hoffmann books! IMHO this is ridiculous. I'm merely trying to play by the rules. And you find this something to chuckle at? Interesting.
Jim
Message: Posted by: oldwilson_2000 (Aug 2, 2004 04:19AM)
I think the question is if you can make the well-founded assumption that the one who gave you the manufacturing rights is the one who has the right to do so. I am sure if Joe Stevens knew about Werry he would have contacted him to "play by the rules". He must have had no reason to doubt Ross' words. I am not actually sure that Richard Ross actually stole the idea from him, I only know about the quarrel and I, too, have to trust Werry's words. Additionally I am quite sure that Werry's Durania Balls have been sold some years before Richard Ross' FISM act. Adding the facts that they are called "Durania" (from Düren, Werry's hometown) and that the Netherlands, where Richard Ross comes from, are not quite far from Düren (and Germany in general ...), it seems quite believable to me, though, that there is at least some truth in that story.

Frank
Message: Posted by: Werner G. Seitz (Aug 2, 2004 09:12AM)
Well, also this is a bit late, I was about to write re the story of the Durania and it's inventor *Werry*, whilst then reading, *oldwilson_2000* from Germany. already did explain all about it.

Fact is (I'm originally from Germany and did know *W. Geissler-Werry* well) that I well remember, when the Durania popped up and got originated..I was a young man at that time :)
Actually, when it first popped up as an add in Werrys *Magische Welt* - I'm pretty sure I still have the copies stocked away somewhere- I figured out how the gimmick worked and got it later confirmed by Werry, though I never bought one...
Anyway, what I want to say is simply, that somehow I doubt Richard Ross did *steal* the idea, because of he did call the gimmick for *Durania* and when watching the Richard Ross video, where he does perform the routine (with colored balls, as Werry suggested) it never occured to me, he gave it out as his idea, because he mentioned -on the video- the gimmick was well known in Europe, and that it was.
Using the original name of it (Durania) gave me too the impression he just did use a gimmick that was mainly available in Europe/Germany, and that he NEVER said -at least at the tape- that the Durania-gimmick was his invention..
Message: Posted by: Dave Dorsett (Aug 2, 2004 09:26AM)
I agree with you that playing by the rules is important! That's what we did as best as possible with Stevens and I applaud your steps to do the right thing. I certainly agree there are those who would "sew up" rights whether or not they have any legitimate claim. My chuckle was at the ironic juxtaposition of your wording, nothing more.
I would concur with both oldwilson_2000 and Mr. Seitz that there was probably more to the story. I think we're both talking about making good faith efforts, something lacking on many occasions.
Message: Posted by: RiserMagic (Aug 2, 2004 04:46PM)
Dave;
I'm sure Joe Stevens would have acted in good faith. Whatever the complete story on the Durania shells, they were not exclusively Richard Ross's to sell (the rights). I do not fault Joe nor you. This is simply typical of the messes that come up in magic involving undocumented rights to certain items. It is another reason why some items vanish from the marketplace - forever.
Jim
Message: Posted by: oldwilson_2000 (Aug 3, 2004 02:32AM)
I agree with Werner Seitz concerning the question if Richard Ross actually *stole* the idea of the durania shell. I have the video, too, and I remember him having a hard time pronouncing the word "durania" correctly. After all, it would have been *really* bold not only to steal an idea but also to take over the original name of the trick. When I talked to Werry, however, it seemed to me like he felt being ripped off. He always had a hard time coping with copyists (nesting thimbles, "dream effect" [appearing silk], appearing canes, coin pedestal etc.) and was railing about the "copyists' mafia" very often.

Frank
Message: Posted by: Ted Lesley (Aug 4, 2004 02:30AM)
Friends,
I was a good friend of the late Werner Geissler-WERRY for 48 years and I remember the "Durania" Billard Balls very well, because I had one set decades ago.
As the late Richard Ross put them on the market via Stevens, I informed Werry and he was more than fed up. I phoned Richard as well and advised, he should have a word with Werry about this blatant thievery, but he never phoned or spoke to him.
All the Werry tricks were sold by his widow to Mr. Tesmar and he now owns all the rights on Werry´s tricks at present.
I am sure, that Mr. Tesmar would sell the rights to this trick to a manufacturer.

Any questions? Feel free to ask!

Ted Lesley
Message: Posted by: RiserMagic (Aug 4, 2004 05:04AM)
Ted;
Thank you for joining in this discussion. My next question is how do I get in touch with Mr. Tesmar?
Jim
Message: Posted by: Werner G. Seitz (Aug 4, 2004 10:17AM)
Well, IF I am not entirely mistaken, Tesmar closed down over a year or so back (and went out of the magicbizz) and the rigths are now in the hands of HARRI (NOT the Swede), but Mr. Detlev Hartung...he does run a website, but it doesn't work very well yet:

http://www.magiccenterharri.de/a.php

His email-addy is:
D-Hartung@t-online.de

Hej, Mr. Ted Lesley..you should know that?? :)
(Greetings from DK :) )
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Aug 5, 2004 03:06AM)
The magiceffex.com shop still appears to be open, but whether Tesmar is still operating it (or whether he ever was) may be another matter.

After I wrote this first paragraph, I did a "whois" search on magiceffex.com. Interesting. Tesmar still owns it and apparently operates it, but he isn't selling anything from the site. He refers people to Murphy's and Fun, Inc., instead.

He is offering an interesting set of multiplying balls, but I don't think they are the Durania balls.
Message: Posted by: rikbrooks (Aug 5, 2004 07:43AM)
I visited the same site. Transparent Multiplying Balls? That sounds very interesting and attractive.

So what's the big deal with these Durania balls? What makes them special?
Message: Posted by: Werner G. Seitz (Aug 5, 2004 08:33AM)
[quote]
On 2004-08-05 08:43, rikbrooks wrote:
So what's the big deal with these Durania balls? What makes them special?
[/quote]Heheh..I can se you don't know *them*..actually it's a single *gimmick*, the other balls are normal ones just to get loaded inside..

Well, as it is not allowed here to explain details of *tricks*/secrets- I already got one posting modified- :), let me say that the usual gimmick /s**ll used in the normal Chicago Ball trick can be shown from both sides, and even a ball with another color can be loaded inside at that time!

Gimmick simply consists of 2 s***ls that are hinged, diff. to explain, but when turning your hand to show the other -normally *open*-side, one part of the gimmick moves and so shows/displays a *normal* ball in reality 2 s***ls with their opening *meeting*..
Hope you get the idea...

Re *transparaent* balls, well..they can be used for a soap-bubble routine, catching soap-bubbles..even Fred Kaps did it way back in a great routine in combination with a variation of Dai Vernons, *Ball and Cone*-routine..
FK did use a *kind of* champagne glass as a cone and even removed the stem during the routine to get a *clean* cone..

BTW, if you want to see real magic, get the Fred Kaps DVD, Seeing is believing..see: [url=http://www.beeldengeluid.nl/template_subnav.jsp?navname=werk_in_uitvoering_mediaarchief&category=werk_in_uitvoering&artid=10866]Here![/url]

This is your chance to see how magic can and should be like.. He was *the best*! and even after over 40 years (the earlier tapings are from over 40 years back) his routines are still a joy to watch and are enjoyed by everone seeing them..

I know- I'm late, as here in Europe I have not gotten the latest issue of *GENII*- there is a review of this DVD in the August issue and I can't imagine anything else than it will recommend the same I do..
GET THAT DVD, just for your pleasure and enjoyment..you'll not regret it.. :)
Message: Posted by: Dave Dorsett (Aug 5, 2004 09:59AM)
[quote]
On 2004-08-05 09:33, Werner G. Seitz wrote:
Gimmick simply consists of 2 s***ls that are hinged, diff. to explain,[/quote]

If you think they're hard to explain you ought to try making them! Now THAT'S difficult! "Simply..." doesn't enter into it. However, knowing his work if anyone can do it well Jim Riser can.
It will be nice if he manages to work out the rights issues. Then again, not having them out everywhere has been good for some performers. I hope there's enough of a market to make it worthwhile for him. The effect is NOT an easy one to perform well.
Jim, if there's any way I can assist you in you efforts, feel free to PM me.
Dave
Message: Posted by: RiserMagic (Aug 5, 2004 10:40AM)
Dave;
Thanks for the offer and vote of confidence. I may take you up on the advice offer - if the rights owner can ever get tracked down. I figured I'd spin the parts.
Jim
Message: Posted by: Werner G. Seitz (Aug 5, 2004 10:53AM)
[quote]
On 2004-08-05 10:59, Dave Dorsett wrote:
[quote]
On 2004-08-05 09:33, Werner G. Seitz wrote:
Gimmick simply consists of 2 s***ls that are hinged, diff. to explain,[/quote]

If you think they're hard to explain you ought to try making them! Now THAT'S difficult! [/quote]
I most certainly don't protest..it is precision work, but, to explain how they look like, is VERY easy when using a simple drawing instead of a written explanation..

The *principle* is easy and one even can se it involves *gravity*, but I 100% agree, it is precission work to make them and to make a nice fit, so the diam. of one part -the outside- isn't too much diff. from the other -inside- part-which has to contain the *load*-the other balls..

Good luck..and simply try to contact Detlev Hartung..I'm pretty sure he holds the rights, as he does so with ALL the other stuff from *Werry* -after Tesmar officially gave it all over to him when he stopped dealing in magic.
Message: Posted by: RiserMagic (Aug 5, 2004 02:06PM)
OK, now how do I contact Detlev Hartung?
Jim
Message: Posted by: Werner G. Seitz (Aug 5, 2004 05:26PM)
[quote]
On 2004-08-05 15:06, RiserMagic wrote:
OK, now how do I contact Detlev Hartung?
Jim
[/quote]D-Hartung@t-online.de
Message: Posted by: Chris Becker (Mar 20, 2006 12:33PM)
Any news on the Durania shells? Stevens doesn't have them anymore on their website!

Thanks, Christof
Message: Posted by: FCpreacher (Mar 20, 2006 09:27PM)
Only in my dreams. Dennis Loomis said he might entertain the idea if enough people were interested. I haven't heard anything for 2 years or so.

FC
Message: Posted by: Dennis Loomis (Mar 21, 2006 09:37AM)
No, I was never involved in this. You're thinking of my old partner Jim Riser. He's the craftsman. If he has the time, he certainly could do a great job with this. His website is http://www.jamesriser.com

Dennis Loomis
Message: Posted by: Chris Becker (Mar 21, 2006 12:35PM)
It's such an important gimmick, it would be terrific it was available again. I'm sure lots and lots of people would be interested. I'm similarly interested in the Lozenge, of which I once bought a very cheap version. You can make your own pretty easily (I made one for a tennis ball routine), but why not market those, too?
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Mar 21, 2006 01:14PM)
[quote]
On 2006-03-21 13:35, Christof wrote:
It's such an important gimmick, it would be terrific it was available again. I'm sure lots and lots of people would be interested. I'm similarly interested in the Lozenge, of which I once bought a very cheap version. You can make your own pretty easily (I made one for a tennis ball routine), but why not market those, too?
[/quote]

This is just the reason they do not manufacture them any longer. People bugged Stevens and he finally got some made special. Then no one bought them because they cost $90 for 3 balls and the gimmick. It took him years to sell the original gimmicks. So interest is not only a factor, but actually putting out the cash is required.

I don't know what a Lozenge is, but if you made one, then that is why a manufacturer does not. You made one, in stead of finding the original or had one made by a magic craftsman.

Did you look in the discount section for the imperfect balls at Stevens site?
Message: Posted by: iwillfoolu (Mar 21, 2006 06:31PM)
IMHO the reason Stevens couldn't sell the Durania gimmick had very little to do with the price. The size that Stevens sold was like 1 3/8". That's tiny. If they were made in 2" or 1 3/4" I would have bought a few sets.
Joe
Message: Posted by: Chris Becker (Mar 21, 2006 09:32PM)
Well, now that you mention it... I agree that the problem of most balls sets out there is that they are too small. That's why I always made up my own - which also trained me in working without a shell... :)
Message: Posted by: Dave Dorsett (Mar 22, 2006 08:08AM)
The size was actually 1 5/8", the size Frank Radtke (House of Fakini) made years ago for Greg Wilson. Larger sizes work well for some, not so well for those with smaller hands. If only one size is to be made, a size that more people can use is the logical way to go. Larger silicone balls also make... "it"... behave more temperamentally.

Christof says "lots & lots" of people would be interested. "Lots & lots" of a very small number (people interested in magic, subset ball manipulation, subset advanced)is still a small number. That means the product (trick, book, cups) will be expensive because dies are expensive to make, labor is costly, etcetera, etcetera.

I doubt Joe will do them again. Your best bet is Jim Riser (see the old posts at the beginning)
Message: Posted by: RiserMagic (Mar 22, 2006 09:46AM)
Guys;
I ran in to a dead end on getting any kind of responses on the "rights" search - so the project sits on hold. Dave is correct when he states that making only a few sets is not cost effective (end product becomes too expensive). A dozen or so guys wanting sets is hardly worth the effort and setup expenses. BTW - I was thinking 1 3/4" balls for the load balls. I'm still waiting for a legitimate rights holder (documented) to come forth. Until then, no Durania Balls from me.
Jim
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Mar 23, 2006 11:26AM)
[quote]
On 2006-03-22 10:46, RiserMagic wrote:
Guys;
I ran in to a dead end on getting any kind of responses on the "rights" search - so the project sits on hold. Dave is correct when he states that making only a few sets is not cost effective (end product becomes too expensive). A dozen or so guys wanting sets is hardly worth the effort and setup expenses. BTW - I was thinking 1 3/4" balls for the load balls. I'm still waiting for a legitimate rights holder (documented) to come forth. Until then, no Durania Balls from me.
Jim
[/quote]

From the advertising from Stevens he did a search in Europe and could not find anything. Richard Ross had this on his tape and only said he got it in Europe. At this point 'rights' is not an issue as something from the 1950's or 60's would be open for manufacture. Maybe finding this 'Durania' person would be the way to go! Never heard of a magician by that name, but I am not knowing of all European magicians.
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Mar 23, 2006 11:32AM)
[quote]
On 2006-03-21 22:32, Christof wrote:
Well, now that you mention it... I agree that the problem of most balls sets out there is that they are too small. That's why I always made up my own - which also trained me in working without a shell... :)
[/quote]

There are many versions of the Billiard Balls without shells in print. It is nice you are creative enough to do so. But in the end, does it really matter to an audience viewing the routine. If you can make it 'more' magical by using a shell, then the shell is the way to go. Unless you are like Davenport from England, he has the MC announce that he uses no gimmicks in his manipulation act and relies purely on sleight of hand to accomplish his magic routines.

This means nothing to a lay audience. They are there to be entertained and enjoy the material, not say, "Wow, that guy did not use a shell."
Message: Posted by: FCpreacher (Mar 23, 2006 06:31PM)
Dennis,

I apologize for getting that wrong. Thank you for clearing it up.

Also, concerning shell work, you could use two shells (see Shimada's work). Also, in my manipulation act I use NO shells.

Stop by Bob Little's convention on June 25th in Bensalem, PA and you can see me perform it.

FC
Message: Posted by: RandyStewart (Mar 23, 2006 06:32PM)
If the price per set were pre-paid and high enough, even the smallest number of interested parties would make it worthwhile. As long as they were 1 3/4 to 2", I'd be interested. So how low...errr...how high can you go...

It's the machinist's turn.
Message: Posted by: RiserMagic (Mar 24, 2006 08:52AM)
[quote]
On 2006-03-23 19:32, RandyStewart wrote:
If the price per set were pre-paid and high enough, even the smallest number of interested parties would make it worthwhile. As long as they were 1 3/4 to 2", I'd be interested. So how low...errr...how high can you go...

It's the machinist's turn.
[/quote]

Randy;
As far I am concerned until the rights issue is resolved, it is not worth making the Durania Balls at any price. I certainly do not need the extra work nor grief attached to making items with rights in question. I'm busy enough as it is.
Jim
Message: Posted by: RandyStewart (Mar 24, 2006 10:04AM)
Thanks for commenting Jim. With rights issue unresolved and without your craftsmanship in making the Durania Balls, we will be at a loss. Too bad.

You know Bill Palmer has commented and educated us all on importance of copyright, trademark, and patents. Serving not only to protect material but if anything tell the world what belongs to whom! This particularly important and useful when inventors have passed on.
Message: Posted by: Chris Becker (Mar 27, 2006 04:43AM)
Now that I think about it, I believe Richard Ross got his Durania Shell from Willi Seidl here in Vienna ("here", as in: Im currently on a holiday back home).

And I also think Willi once said he doesn't want to make them anymore, because it's too difficult and expensive.
Message: Posted by: Tod Todson (Apr 24, 2007 06:51PM)
Any new progress in the last year?
Message: Posted by: FCpreacher (Apr 28, 2007 09:49PM)
I have heard nothing. :(
Message: Posted by: Steven Conner (Jun 5, 2007 02:30PM)
[quote]
On 2006-03-22 10:46, RiserMagic wrote:
Guys;
I ran in to a dead end on getting any kind of responses on the "rights" search - so the project sits on hold. Dave is correct when he states that making only a few sets is not cost effective (end product becomes too expensive). A dozen or so guys wanting sets is hardly worth the effort and setup expenses. BTW - I was thinking 1 3/4" balls for the load balls. I'm still waiting for a legitimate rights holder (documented) to come forth. Until then, no Durania Balls from me.
Jim
[/quote]

Jim:

I am in correspondence with the rights owner as I write. The rights are not owned by Detlef Hartung as suggested. As soon as I can get something worked out, I will be in touch with you. Would really like to see you manufacture them as your work is par excellent.
Message: Posted by: Chance Wolf (Jun 12, 2007 12:19AM)
I happen to have a complete original set in Near Mint Condition which I may entertain the idea of selling if the offer is good.
This thread is a PERFECT example of how ridiculous the "rights" issue gets after decades of handing off from one person to the next with little if any documentation combined with conflict of the actual originators etc. It just gets worse by the year.
My problem is the "Rights Horders" who buy up, sometimes the "rights" by the truckload, at prices next to nothing or promises never fulfilled, and then sit on them...probably until they die, never opting to sell them to folks who can actually get around to BUILDING/MANUFACTURING the effects. If they chose to sell a few of the "rights", this would allow magic to GROW rather than stifle the art.
Well, there is my vent for the day and I really hope Jim can cut through all this and finally get these back on market if the demand justifies the run.
Chance
Message: Posted by: incompletefaro (Jun 28, 2007 01:47AM)
Hope everything works out well. I am waiting for the Durania balls to hit the market...
Message: Posted by: Matt101 (Jun 20, 2009 12:09PM)
My friend was producing these balls, one piece for 100 US dollars, if you are interested, PM me, I will try to persuade him to make some again
Message: Posted by: ricafanta (Jun 28, 2009 12:07PM)
I have two original sets. One was made by Werry in the sixties and the other was manufactured by Manfred Thum. Both from Germany. The price is more than $ 100.- But they are the Originals.
Message: Posted by: Peter Pitchford (Jun 28, 2009 09:53PM)
Dudes, I just picked up a set and let me tell you ... they are just fun to play with. When it comes to manipulation, I'm such a purist so I'm not sure if I will ever use these in performance, but man are they fun! I fooled my lady too. That's saying something.