Your Version of Duke's Version?

Discuss the art of Children's Entertainment with your fellow performers.

Postby Guest » 10/15/07 12:00 PM


I've read about Duke Stern's "Dye Version," in a couple of books about performing for children. It looks like a great effect. The gimmick, as described, seems to be just an over-sized dye-tube...

I'm not sure about this, just surmised from the readings. Any thoughts on constructing one? Plastic tubing? Metal whozeewhatsit from an old washing machine?

The trick runs 150 bucks, which, while worth it i'm sure, seems like could be substituted for an afternoon of arts and crafts...

Any thoughts?

Postby Guest » 10/15/07 03:09 PM

Its a nice closer for shows when you customize the big banner ending: Any kid (and their parents) love to see their child's name on a Jumbo banner. Also great for Holiday & Retirement shows.

The silk dye tube as furnished for the effect by Abbott's was flesh colored....but any jumbo dye tube will suffice. The reason the effect was pricey from Abbott's is because you were paying for the 5 long colored silks and the 12" x 24 foot Rainbow Streamer. If you can get some used silks than the trick will cost you virtually nothing.

I bought mine new from Duke in the mid 1960's when it first came out....He was repping for Abbott's then...and even then it cost around $40.00 because of the tie-died silks furnished. But today there are used silks around galore from all the auctions (few auctions in the early 1960's) and plenty of large dye tubes available so for little money you can make the effect up yourself.

Postby Guest » 10/15/07 04:20 PM

That's great, thanks Gale. I was thinking I would buy the silks new, and figured i could spend less than $100. It hadn't occurred that i could buy them used, or find a "jumbo" dye tube. I'll have a look around. Have you any suggestions for magic auctions?

Postby Guest » 10/16/07 09:20 AM

A few years ago, Abbotts also sold just the dye tube for the trick, it was very reasonably priced.

Postby Guest » 10/16/07 10:21 AM

I just called Abbott's. It wasn't listed on their website, but they're selling it--only 20 bucks!
Thanks a lot, Kurt!

Postby Guest » 10/16/07 04:20 PM

I just noticed now that you are not in States; don't know much about auctions in Europe other than the giant ones I receive catalogs about.

But here in the states, besides the online auctions, virtually each major city has a local IBM or SAM club that holds auctions, hence we are awash in used silks.

Harold Rice's daughter ( sells original RICE silks. Although pricey, they are the best. Not necessary understand; just the finest.

Postby Guest » 10/17/07 10:20 PM

I'm actually in the States, at the moment. Massachusetts...

Don't know much about auctions--online, or otherwise, except ebay. But i gather you're talking about st else.

Thanks for the tips. I'll probably avoid the pricier silks, if they're not necessary. But good to know who makes quality stuff, for when it matters.

Postby Guest » 10/17/07 11:56 PM

You didn't say where in Mass.....but if near the Boston area give Ray Goulet's Magic Shop a call (617-926-3949) or Bob Olsen (860-928-2419); they can tell you of upcoming magic club auctions or magic conventions where used dealers will likely be in attendance.

Postby Guest » 10/18/07 06:57 AM

I'm in West Mass, Amherst area, but it's a small state! Travel to Boston (about 2 hours) frequently. I only know Hanklees--nice to know there are others, out there. Will give a call to those folks you mentioned, thanks a lot for the help.

Postby Guest » 10/28/07 08:10 PM

I put together a midsize version recently using 12" silks and a 6" X 12' streamer, and for the gimmick use something small that is found in Rice's books that just fit the silks perfectly. The routine I've been using consists of a David Ginn-inspired mis-calling the colors of the silks, and having my helpers try to remember what colors went in first and last.

I've performed it for both preschoolers and adults and the response has been great with both age groups, including a room full of magicians who either hadn't ever seen it performed or hadn't in a long time. It's great eye candy and well worth making/buying and doing.

My set-up cost roughly $50, and given the response, I'm going to upgrade to the Abbott's at some point. But the 12' streamer works great for the venues I use, namely classrooms. I've read in several places that Tommy Windsor had both 24' and 12' streamers that he would use depending on the size of the room he was playing.


Postby Guest » 10/30/07 03:46 PM

I always felt that the ending was the weakest part of the routine, until I started to produce a dove from the streamer which got the reaction that I was looking for.
I don't work with live stock any more so I dropped the routine from my act. If anybody has come up with a sock ending, I'd sure like to knw about it

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