Creator: Paul Brook
Publisher: Murphy's Magic
MSRP: $ 65
Skill Level: unknown
Book length: 46 pages
Type of effect: number reveal, lock pick trick
Manufacturer's Write Up:
A simple padlock is removed from your key chain; it is the kind that is so often used for gym lockers or traveling. It can be fully inspected and even a master locksmith would not find any 'foul play'.
Yet, you are able to perform amazing feats with this 'invisible' prop.
A person you are with resets the lock to a three digit number of her choosing, and then she locks the lock. All this is done with your back turned and without peeking.
The dials are thoroughly mixed and the lock is set down upon the table.
You ask the person to think of just one of the numbers and you are able to name the number she is thinking of. This number is placed into the lock and the process is repeated three more times, until all of the numbers have been entered.
Not only does the lock open, but when the lock is turned around it is set to the selected numbers. When the lock is checked it will only open at the participant's selected three digit number.
For a Group:
One person in the group is asked to set the combination lock to a unique three digit number and to keep it secret.
Now the lock is passed amongst the rest of the group who can fully inspect and turn the dials; making sure it doesn't just open on any number.
After the lock has been passed amongst the group, another person is selected to hold the lock.
The performer now asks the first person to think of his selected number. Whilst the second person is holding the padlock on the other side of the room, the performer 'reads' the first person's mind. The performer then calls over to the person holding the lock and tells that person to place three numbers into the lock, done silently by holding up fingers.
Once the numbers are placed within the lock, the person proclaims that the lock has indeed now opened. The lock is shown to the person who set the code, and they confirm that it is the number they were thinking of!
This effect can be performed anywhere, anytime, with any person!
How accurate is the ad copy? no deception
What's in the box? One padlock that that will enable you to perform these amazing effects and a 46 page eBook containing the secret to the effect, scripted routines, along with tried and tested subtleties
Key points: No stooges, pre-show work, or writing down required!
How are the production values: this is a plain pdf with no pictures
Is it well made: this is a straight forward ungimmicked brass padlock
Is it well taught: In my personal opinion "no." It was simple enough for Paul Brook to make a video for the commercial, but not to make an explanation? I have zero experience picking locks and so to receive a written instruction with no pictures proved much too difficult for me to figure out. But, that said, I found a host of experienced magicians who absolutely love this effect and had zero problems figuring it out. So, I am sure my opinion is in the minority.
My thoughts (what I personally liked/disliked):
Storage? Does it "pack flat?" Even the packing material was "flat" this is just a tiny brass lock - nothing else is needed
Does it "play big?" mentalism effects are some of the strongest effects in magic
Difficulty / Skill level required: I don't know the answer as I was NEVER able to figure this out after two days of playing with it, I gave up frustrated. I also wear reading glasses and the numbers on the dials were too difficult for me to read unless they were in direct sunlight.
How much arts and crafts are involved? zero
How practical is this in the real world? (can it really be done?) Again, reading OTHER reviews, I discovered many people who love this effect and found to be very useful.
Overall score: let's toss out the traditional score of 1-10 and make this something that we all can appreciate and understand.
_____ Somewhat Satisfied
_____ Neither Satisfied or Dissatisfied
_____ Somewhat Dissatisfied
X Very Dissatisfied
_____ No Opinion
Note that Paul Brook did not have this gimmick created, this is a real padlock that he found through a lot of research and testing. The "trick" is him being able to "teach you" how to crack this lock, also this is a trick he has "honed" over years of performance. That said, $65 seems a bit on the high side, A similar brass padlock on Amazon sells for $13 and then to only receive a pdf with no pictures as an explanation - especially for something that I believe needs pictures - seemed a little "phoned in." Making a video with your camera phone and editing it with software your computer comes with is very easy. I would suggest that Paul Brook film an explanation and have Murphy's upload it to their servers.
+ Hey do you want to see my full review with even more of my opinions and ideas? Visit this link for my video review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=auf3S1elCUw