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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Magical Accessories » » IThread - The New Programmable Invisible Thread Reel by Sean Bogunia (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Bill Lhotta
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IThread

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways …

This is a review of Sean Bogunia’s new iThread invisible thread reel. It’s the first programmable reel I know of that uses invisible thread. The routines that are possible with this have not been achievable in the past with conventional thread reels.

Let me start by saying I am a fan of Sean’s work and own many of his effects. He puts out top quality effects at a reasonable price and is always available to answer questions and provide good customer support. This is something every magic creator/dealer should aspire too, but unfortunately many just don’t get this part of the business.

I absolutely love the iThread and have been spending the past couple of weeks getting used to it. I’ve put together a routine with the iThread using a borrowed finger ring and was hoping to have a link to a YouTube video showing what can be done with the iThread. I think once you see what it can do you will be as excited as I am about the iThread.

So what is the iThread? It’s an electronic programmable invisible thread reel capable of storing two six minute programs. There is a wireless remote control small enough to be finger palmed that is used to start/stop/pause the iThread. The iThread is composed of two parts, the base unit (1.5” x 2.25” x 1”) and the reel itself (about 2” long and a little thicker than a pencil). The reel is attached to the base unit by a cord of about two feet. This gives you a bit of flexibility on where you can attach the reel apart from the base unit. The base unit is something you will want to hide out of sight. I put mine in my inside jacket pocket and the thread reel itself is attached to the outside of the pocket using the supplied magnets.

So now that we know what it is, let’s find out why it is so great.

As I mentioned in the description this thread reel is programmable and can store two different programs up to six minutes in length. This is the first thread reel I know of that allows you to make programs for invisible thread. Sean has also developed the iThread so you can download the programs you develop to your computer with a USB interface. This allows you to develop multiple routines and save them to your computer for future use without having to reprogram them all in again from scratch. This is a feature I really wish Sean would incorporate in his PTS system (hint, hint!). The USB interface also provides you with the capability to download programs that are created and shared by other iThread users. Sean and Ron Jaxon have started an iThread forum for users to ask questions and also to share their programs they come up with. Ron and Sean will also be sharing iThread programs on the forum as they come up with them. Ron has a nice routine there already for a floating dollar bill which is shown about half way through this YouTube clip. If you purchase iThread make sure you spend the extra $50 for the USB interface because you WILL want it!

Another nice feature of the iThread is it provides constant tension regardless of how much thread is dispensed or how low the batteries get. This tension is user defined by a speed control wheel on the base unit so you can have as little or as much tension as your routine calls for. And since the iThread is programmable you can vary the tension throughout your routine and the program will remember all the speed changes. Not having low batteries affect the performance of your program is another big plus.

There is also a nice feature of the iThread called ITR mode where you can turn on the reel and use it just as you would a conventional thread reel without starting any of the programs. ITR mode will operate at whatever tension level is selected by the speed control wheel and stay at this tension regardless of how much thread is dispensed. You can even combine ITR mode with the programming mode and have ITR mode set before you start your program (to pretension the thread) or use ITR mode inside a program. The possibilities are endless.

Now let me warn you not everyone is going to love the iThread. It is an electronic gizmo that provides you with rich functionality, but you will need to spend some time learning how to use it. If you are the type of person who hates working with invisible thread then iThread is not going to solve that problem for you. It simply adds another layer of complexity to your invisible thread work. If you own Sean’s PTS system and like it then you are going to love the iThread.

If you are the kind of person who loves electronic gizmos and is “not afraid of invisible thread” then run, don’t walk, to Sean's website and pick up an iThread of your own. You won’t be disappointed!

iThread goes for $350 and that includes the base unit, thread reel, remote control, a DVD to help you get started, a couple of AAA batteries, and some magnets for providing different mounting options for your base unit and thread reel. The USB interface is an additional $50 and I would highly recommend picking it up.

Let me know if you have any questions and I will do the best I can to answer them.

Cheers!

** Bill **
Jaxon
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Great review Bill. I know a lot of magicians where waiting to hear from someone who actually has it rather then from Sean or myself. Now I have a link to give to those who ask me if there are any reviews of it out there yet.

For those of you who have the iThread or are thinking about picking one up. What Bill said above when he said:

Quote:
It is an electronic gizmo that provides you with rich functionality, but you will need to spend some time learning how to use it.


I agree with that 100%. This is he first electronic invisible thread reel that does more then just reel thread back in. So it'll take a little while to get used to all those functions. In the ithread forum there are already quite a few tips posted but for those of you who are worried about becoming familiar with all the functions. Here's what I suggest you do when yours arrives.

First of all, just use it like any normal invisible thread reel at first. Just set the speed control to the tension you like on the ithread and use it like you normally use an ITR (You'll love the fact that you can adjust the tension). Then over time play around with the other functions at your own pace. After a while you might decide you want to make that floating bill bonce around a little, float down to the floor and back up or what ever you dream up for it to do. Then make, or download a program and give it a try.

In this way you're taking the frustrations away by learning as you go.

Of course, it's also fun to just experiment with too. Smile

BTW - You don't have to own an iThread to become a member of the iThread forum. It is set to private (Meaning only members who are granted access can view it) but that's mainly just to keep non-magicians out of there. So if you join the forum and learn a little more about the iThread and see IT tips. Just let me know what your user name is in the iThread forum and I'll grant you access to the hidden section.

Ron Jaxon
Image


After regaining my ability to hear after 20 years of deafness. I learned that there is magic all around you. The simplest sounds that amazed me you probably ignore. Look and listen around you right now. You'll find something you didn't notice before.
pistachio86
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Would someone kindly tell me where to purchase one of these ithreads please?
Dougini
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The Beautiful State Of Maine
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Hi Pistachio! Welcome to the Magic Café! Look at the date on the opening post. iThread, I do believe is long gone! Sean has made so many improvements...still, go here and look. You might find something you like!

http://seanbogunia.com/products2.html

Doug
Bill Lhotta
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Yes, Sean has just recently re-released the old iThread which is now called DeckTR and cleverly disguised as a regular deck of cards so you can have it right out in the open under the spectator’s nose!

All of Sean's products are top notch and his customer service is second to none.

Cheers!

** Bill **
Dougini
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Bill have you seen his Complete Dancing Hank Act Plus PTS? It's all there! A complete act that rivals some of the best performances! It used to take two, or three people backstage to even come close to this! I think the three grand could be recovered in just a few shows!

Doug
Bill Lhotta
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on top of a 14000' mountain in Colorado
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Yes I've seen his complete dancing hank act and I personally own his PTS system. All of Sean's effects are well thought out and designed with the professional in mind, and his quality and service are great!

Cheers!

** Bill **
Dougini
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The Beautiful State Of Maine
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Bill, you have that? Wow..the first time I saw that system was when Ron Jaxon introed it, and I was like: Smile
Bill Lhotta
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on top of a 14000' mountain in Colorado
356 Posts

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Yes, it is very nice! I had a really nice 3+ minute commercial routine I worked up with PTS that used to be on YouTube, but they cut the music out of it due to copyright issues. Without the music the video didn't stand by itself very well so I removed it.

Cheers!

** Bill **
Michael Goldstone
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Wow! It's great to see microcontrollers in use like this. I had thought about doing something similar with an Arduino but it never got off the ground.
Really beautiful work.
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