An Improved Fake

H runel White's splendid hook, "Original Mysteries for Magicians," describes "The B.W. Feke Hat," on page 41. I naturally studied his fake from various angles because a tricked up hat can be of great value to magicians, if not alone for production possibilities, for use in any number of other tricks. I consider my idea superior, after having used it for a period of over 15 years when I was playing vaudeville, inasmuch as the hat can be left in the audience without anyone detecting the secret workings.

Procure two derbies and from one sever the brim and trim the remainder so it is li inch lower than the other hat, which is left intact. Paste a neat label on the inside after you have cut a small trap. This trap is made by cutting around three sides of the label, leaving the fourth to act as a hinge. By bending this back and forth a few times it will work easily.

When cutting around the sides of the label, use a very sharp knife to avoid rough edges. Next connect the flap with a piece of rubber and place fake inside of hat No. 2. Now attach the other end of the rubber to the crown of the other hat so it will close the flap of ite own accord when released. Fasten to the outside of the label a black silk thread and with a sewing needle bring the other end outside near the hat band where the bow is.

Tie on the end of the thread a small black curtain ring and you are ready to fill the compartment with your favorite articles for production. I used to fill" this hat with silks, flags and flowers, after which I left it with someone in the audience. (Note by Annemann: You could give someone this hat and tell them that you'll need a hat for a trick or two and aren't sure you can borrow a derby. Also th§t one of your tricks (baking a cake?) might go wrong and you wouldn't want to spoil a spectator's hat. Thus you make an unconscious plant of a friend in the audience who finds nothing wrong with the hat because he doesn't expect to. Have a couple of tricks which could use a hat routined into your program before a production. Borrow the faked derby and do these tricks, using the fake hat as an ordinary one. Then, when ready to return it, and while you are in the audience and people are on all sides, you can show the hat and then get plenty from it. There isn't a soul in the world (except you and I) who would suspect the hat of being faked after such a method of handling. Even the stooge will never know that the gimmick was IN the hat all of the time.)

Ask for loan or a hat and show that it is perfectly empty. The ring is grasped by one of the fingers. This opens the trap and you produce a few articles after which you release ring thereby causing the trap to close. Continue productions after showing that you are taking the last thing out each time before showing the hat empty.

The fact that the fake is well sewn all around and stitches covered by the ribbon band on the outside, also by the sweat band on the inside, it is understood that the sweatband can be turned up without hindering the bowl (fake) whatever. Once the performer has had such a hat around him for a while he won't part with it for anything — its uses in many ways will be too apparent.

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