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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Boxes, tubes & bags » » Al Baker Rice Bowl help to get them back on the market? (4 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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SpellbinderEntertainment
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Hello, on another Rice Bowl thread we’ve talked about the long unavailable Al Baker style Rice Bowls, and what a wonderful prop and unusual method he had.

After so many requests for this very special and high quality version to be brought back on the market, I decided to hound Michal Mosher at Wack-O Innovative magic, he has the tools to make excellent ones, but was concerned they would not sell well enough to make the process worth pursuing.

I won… Michael is willing to look into making a limited number of Al Baker style Rice Bowl sets.

--However, he needs to find someone who has an original Baker gimmick. He’d need very clear and detailed photos from every angle of the gimmick both on and off the bowls to see if he can correctly mold one.

--And it would not hurt of have a description of your best handling for them, so he could provide very detailed instructions with the set. (Charlie Miller’s performance was a hysterical miracle!)

If he can gather all that info together, he’ll try to work up a prototype. These have not been available for decades, and even if you own a set the “certain something” wears out and needs to be replaced.

…And If Wack-O-Magic makes them he’ll be sure to put the people who helped at the front of the line and give them discounts.

I’ll of course provide at least one, maybe two, presentation/story options as a bonus if/when the set comes out.
Any takers out there? You can PM me.

Magically,
Walt
Wizard of Oz
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If we have team Wacko-O-Walt manning the helm, these will be awesome!!!
Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.
magicians
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I didn't know that this was a public domain item but maybe the Al Baker estate has some designs you can buy? You might try the Al Baker assembly #35 in Poughkeepsie, NY. That club has a lot of Al Baker effects and could probably help.
Illusionist, Illusionist consulting, product development, stage consultant, seasoned performer for over 35 years. Specializing in original effects. Highly opinionated, usually correct, and not afraid of jealous critics. I've been a puppet, a pirate, a pawn and a King. Free lance gynecologist.
makeupguy
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Ian:

since it's been 61 years since Al Baker's death.. That would put his work in the public domain.

Since it's also been published in MANY magic books, much like the and other rice bowls and old staples like square circles it would certainly put it in the realm at any rate.

I would, as an ethical dealer, give full credit where it's due.. and would LOVE to include some history behind the trick and Mr. Bakers original routines.

Since these have been LONG off the market, no manufacturer or dealer holds the current reproduction rights. I think it's high time that a quality version of this was marketed before some overseas guy makes one and puts it in a plastic magic set.
Pete Biro
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Michael M. I've got some fun presentation ideas. We need to get together on several projects.
:spinningcoin:
STAY TOONED... @ www.pete-biro.com
billappleton
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Smart to have the Necromancer's Grymoire with an adult and a kid's version. Might handle the rice bowls in the same way, seems like they would work great in a kid's show or adult stage/parlor.
SpellbinderEntertainment
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Getting the cart before the horse, and all that…

Before Wack-O can even make a prototype,
or dream up a design, or designs, or presentations,
he needs specs and good photos of a Baker gimmick.

Certainly someone on the Café has to still have one?

I know Michael’s integrity, and he gives full credit where due,
and if Al Baker were around, or a manufacturer owned the piece,
he’d make sure they were taken care of, or just not make it.

It’s just that there’s been a lot of interest on the Café,
and elsewhere, to have these available again in professional quality.
It’s a shame Mr. Baker’s brilliant idea has become buried since his death.
Sets can be made (if there is enough demand) to fill the needs of today.

I also know that Wack-O Innovative Magic won’t conderider the project,
if he can’t make them right, as they were by Al Baker in the past,
and at a fair price for the quality they’d be.

Anyone with any connections to find one of the old sets?

Thanks,
Walt
jimgerrish
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I'm surprised you're talking about molding a gimmick. In our Mini-Mysteries Book 2 article on Rice Bowls Past and Present, we describe how to make the Al Baker bowl from a white balloon and ordinary white china (the clay) bowls. Are you sure you have the right Al Baker Rice Bowls in mind? Besides using a large white balloon, I have made the bowls using a rubber swim cap from the Dollar Store.
Bill Hegbli
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To contribute more then the fact that I only seen the Al Baker Gimmick once in my life. It was rubber or latex round gimmick, I assume to fit the 5" bowl. It was much as mentioned made like a shower cap, meaning it was folded over the edge leading to a smaller circle lip.

I found this photo on line of the gimmick, but they only pictured the top of the gimmick.

Click here to view attached image.
Bill Hegbli
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I found this picture of the Al Baker Rice Bowls, notice the strip is a different color then the traditional Blue strip. These were said to be the Tannen Model. They are 5 inches in diameter.

I also found that the Rice Bowls were Copyright by Kanter Magic, March 16, 1940. Kanter of course is long out of business.

rice bowls

Click here to view attached image.
SpellbinderEntertainment
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Thanks Wmhegbli for your research!

As a kid I used to buy from Kanter’s all the time from their mail-order catalogue (no videos or even pictures of the tricks then and no returns ever.)

Yes, Kanter has long, long ago vanished, which is good news that you found that reference, it means that the sets can be made with no infringements.

(Leave it to Lou Tannen to change the color of the stripe!)

I used to own a set (dumb me, I sold them!) The photos you found will help a great deal.

Michael wants to make the perfect gimmick, the exact right fit, the exact right dip to make it totally deceptive, so I hope someone will also come forward who can take photos from every angle on and off.

I’d really prefer that people PM me any details from here on out, and only post vague references on the forum, we’re getting pretty close to exposure now, and I want to avoid that route at all costs.

Jimgerrish, thanks for your input as well. I think you’re ideas would work fine in a pinch, or for lack of something more custom made. IF Wack-O does go forward with these, they’ll be a classic (and hopefully collectable) set with every piece needed tucked into a travel case as they were in the 1950’s

Thanks again all, and keep on truck’in some PM’ed angles of a gimmick will clinch the deal for Michael to at least make a prototype.

Magically,
Walt
Levent
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I've got a very good Japanese set at home (which I used in the Benson book photos) that I could take pictures of. But I'm on a cruise in Alaska and I won't be back home for two weeks.
Levent
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Btw. If somebody does make a new set, I really hope they do not make them out of crockery. All the bowls sets I've seen were extremely fragile like the set I own. I think I mentioned in the benson book that Charlie Miller was so frustrated that his Baker Bowls were breaking that he eventually turned his own set out of wood and made his own gimmick. I like the trick a lot, but the number one reason I won't put the trick in my show, is because the prop is too fragile for me to rely on. Also the Crockery bowl is very heavy for what it is. If somebody gets a plastic rice bowl and makes a gimmick to fit, then I'm in. Smile
SpellbinderEntertainment
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Levent to the rescue!

Thank you so much, I'll PM you and we'll be in touch when you're back home.
I know both Michael and I value your opinion highly (rings, coins, so many topics)
It would be great to brainstorm on a great set that is Al Baker's but for this century.

Magically,
Walt
jimgerrish
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It's not rocket science. I'm sitting here now in front of some tough thick melamine plastic cereal bowls from the Dollar Store, fitted with a white balloon, with a ring of blue electrician's tape around the top to conceal the edge of the balloon. Fill the bowl with water, put the balloon in place and push down to make the curvature look exactly like the other bowl, but not so shiny. A little olive oil on a cloth gives it the shine without causing damage to the balloon, but what the heck, it's just a white balloon from the same Dollar store, the thick kind used for filling with helium.

But I never use this for performing- just for showing Wiz Kids the history of the Rice Bowls. These days, the only ones I use are black plastic witches cauldrons at Halloween, filling up with jelly beans, and later filling up with green ginger ale punch. I learned how from a 10 year old Wiz Kid - named Eleazar at the time (2007), but these days he calls himself Ee-Gee-Fiki. His trick is published, and I imagine you can guess where- it's called "Cauldron Capers" if you want to learn a new way that would make Al Baker proud.
Paul Jester
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I could never get the balloon to work, I'll have another go. I've had some success with another balloon type thing that come in different flavours, but they were too thin and broke too easily, even the extra safe ones.

I'd definitely vote for those melamine chinese rice bowls. They're light and last! Plus they're not too big, so don't need as much rice. They're the bowls I use at the moment (or some brass ones of the same size). If Wack-O's up for it, I'd love a set with a second gimmick to produce an over-flowing bowl of rice again at the end, as I do at 4:28 in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4adgzp1CHrA
My homemade gimmicks aren't so good! If you watch the video, you'll see why I want a set!
SpellbinderEntertainment
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Jimgerrish!
I do wish you'd stop posting full methods on this public forum, that detail belongs in Secret Sessions, and after you're few hundred posts you should be aware of that.

I know it's not rocket science, I'm not fresh off the turnip truck. But I've not been talking about makeshift junk, I've been discussing high quality professional equipment, there is a huge difference, for instance between Royal Magic Kids sets and Owen Magic Supreme, apples and oranges.

Thank you for your thoughts and comments, but they are not relevant to what I'm looking for, and defiantly too much information in a public area of the Café.

Magically,
Walt
Michael Baker
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Quote:
On 2012-06-24 19:54, Paul Jester wrote:
I could never get the balloon to work, I'll have another go. I've had some success with another balloon type thing that come in different flavours, but they were too thin and broke too easily, even the extra safe ones.

I'd definitely vote for those melamine chinese rice bowls. They're light and last! Plus they're not too big, so don't need as much rice. They're the bowls I use at the moment (or some brass ones of the same size). If Wack-O's up for it, I'd love a set with a second gimmick to produce an over-flowing bowl of rice again at the end, as I do at 4:28 in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4adgzp1CHrA
My homemade gimmicks aren't so good! If you watch the video, you'll see why I want a set!


WOW! I'm VERY impressed!!! Nicely, nicely done, sir!
~michael baker
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Wizard of Oz
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Sweet work Paul!!!
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Alan Munro
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Silicone would be a better choice to shine the gimmick, since it won't cause the gimmick to break down over time. Olive oil will eventually do that.
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Boxes, tubes & bags » » Al Baker Rice Bowl help to get them back on the market? (4 Likes)
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