Joe Porper Strong Box Trick Secret Unlocked

Find out Joe Porper Strong Box trick secret securely hasped and padlocked in the little aluminium box.

I am talking about the highly-praised and highly-priced aluminum box magic apparatus created by machinist/magician Joe Porper.

Strong Box” was hailed as the revolutionary Lippincott Box“.

For those who do not know, “Lippincott Box” aka “Quarter Go“, it is a utility prop used for vanishing or producing a small object.

According to Genii Magazine, Lippincott Box was first marketed in 1949 as “Quarter Go“.

Lippincott Box magic trick

Some said the idea of the Lippincott Box was based on the “Wonder Box“.

Note: The “Wonder Box” which I am referring to is not these two types of “Wonder Silk Box“.

Silk Wonder Box Secret

The secret working of this steel or wooden Wonder Box” is the hidden attached compartment, as shown below:

Steel Wonder Box Magic Trick Secret

This is the Wonder Box by Mikame Craft (Yonezo Mikame).

Mikame Wonder Box Secret

I am talking about this version of “Wonder Box” which you can find in the Professor Hoffmann‘s book “Modern Magic: A Practical Treatise On The Art Of Conjuring“.

Wonder Box Magic Trick

The secret of the Wonder Box” is a hinged doorway, which can be opened or shut when the box is locked.


Related: Here are many more free books by Professor Hoffmann.


Watch Box Magic Trick Secret Revealed

Then there is a bigger sized Lippincott Box called the “Watch Box“, which allow to load bigger item like a wrist watch.

Watch Box Magic Trick

In the market today, these boxes come in different names from different manufacturers.

They include: “Victorian Watch Box” by Dave Powell, “Bread And Watch Box” (with Rattle) by Mikame Craft, “Hanover Watch Box” by Martin Breese or “Nu Way Watch Box” by Max Suko.

Now, let’s talk a little bit about about Joe Porper, before we explore his Strong Box.

Joe Porper Strong Box Secrets

Joe Porper Craftsman Inventor Magician

Besides creating magic props, the late Joe Porper is best known for his awesome high quality products in the pool/billiard industry.

Joe Proper Magic Tricks

In the fraternity of magic, Joe Porper is equally famous for his superb quality magic trick props.

Joe Porper together with magician Pete Biro, they came up with amazing magic props which include, “Folding Key“,
Folding Money“, “Flipper Chip“, “Ghostly Linking Finger Ring” and “Plumber’s Pole“.


Note: One of the many tricks by the late Pete Biro is the Ring On The Stem Of A Wine Glass, which was made famous by the Dutch Fred Kapps.

Ring On Wineglass Stem Trick

You can get the free booklet of the Ring On The Stem Of A Wine Glass, and “Linking Finger Rings” trick from another of Pete Biro’s book below.


Joe Porper’s Examinable Linking Ring 

In 2010, Joe Porper came up the examinable linking ring set.

Linking Rings Secret Gimmick

It uses the similar gimmick like the Blaney Miracle Hoop for the Walter Blaney Ladder Levitation.

The secret linking part of the ring is like the necklace or bracelet clasp which it can slide in and out.

levitation hoop secret

The picture below captured the gap at the ring from this video clip at 0:14.

Joe Porper Examinable Linking Ring Secret

Slow down the playback speed to 0:25 and you can see the disjointed section of the ring, just after he hits it with another normal ring.


chinese linking rings books
Note: Here are three free books on Linking Rings tricks by Jack Miller, Dariel Fitzkee and D. Angelo Ferri aka Dennis Barlotta below.


Joe Porper Strong Box Trick Secret

In fact, I have already cracked open Joe Porper Strong
Box 2.0 secret in the Ching Ling Coin Box explained post.

The secret working of Strong Box 2.0 exposed is just my two cents, as I do not own or have seen the real steel box.

For this post, I am going to elaborate more the method of the trick of  Joe Porper Strong Box and share other related magic props and their secrets too, together some free e-books.

Joe Porper Strong Box Trick Secret Revealed

There are two versions of Joe Porper’s Strong Box magic apparatus.

Joe Porper Strong Box 1.0 Secret Revealed

Steel Lippincott Box

The gimmick of Joe Porper Strong Box original version is ingenious and it is almost undetectable.

The secret has been exposed by a German guy in a YouTube video.

He bought a pirated Strong Box prop from the Mainland China to find out the how Joe Porper Strong Box trick secret.

As seen from the video clip, the locking mechanism is gaffed.

The staple of the hasp is NOT actually screwed tight to the metal box.

It is attached to the box with strong magnets, as shown below:

Strong Box Original Version Secret Magnets

This is the instruction manual of Joe Porper Strong Box 1.0.

Joe Proper Secret Box Exposed

To open the cover of the box, you just give a tug at the padlock.

Watch the video snippet of the secret here.

Joe Porper Strong Box 1.0 Magnets

In fact, I knew Joe Porper’s Strong Box 1.0 uses magnets when I came across this shipping restriction mentioned in a Vietnamese magic props retailer website.

Joe Porper Box Magnets

This original version Strong Box has to be covered when you load the item into it because you have to open the lid of the box.

From the videos, you can see the hand holding onto the padlock as it is placed inside the paper bag.

steel box by Joe Porper

Strong Box Paper Bag Trick

It is because they have to secretly open the box by pulling at the padlock, once it is inside the paper bag.

steel magic box secret exposed

After the marked coin has dropped into the box, the magician has to covertly close it.

They discreetly close the metal box is when their hands reach into the paper bag to take it out.

Joe Porper Strong Box Brown Paper Bag

closeup magic trick exposed

Besides having to cover up the apparatus during the act, it also has the problem with loud clanking sound when the staple magnetically stick to the metal box.

Those who bought this Joe Porper’s steel Lippincott Box highlighted the sound problem in the Magic Cafe forum.

Strong Box Gaetan Bloom Routine

To overcome this noise issue, in 2005, Strong Box 1.0 was repackaged with a comedy  routine by the French magician Gaetan Bloom, and sold it as “The Poor Man’s Safe“.

Joe Proper The Poor Man's Safe Trick

This routine by Gaetan Bloom can mask the noise made by the magnetic locking mechanism with the rattling sound of the loose coins and the crumpling paper bag sound.

This is the routine:

Before you perform the trick, placed the Strong Box with its gaffed lid opened together the padlock inside a brown paper bag.

In addition, throw in some loose coins outside the metal box.

Fold the paper bag mouth and closed it up with a bulldog clip, attached with a string and a small key for the padlock.

Begin the act, by introducing this prepared prop to your spectator and gives the bag a gentle shake so he can hear the jingling of the coins.

You borrow a coin from a spectator and have it marked with a marker pen.

Using the marker pen, you draw a short line to depict a slot on the paper bag.

Strong Box Paper Bag Trick

Taking the marked coin you insert it halfway through the marker-drawn “slot“, pause, then you continue to push the whole coin into the paper bag.

Strong Box Paper Bag Coin Magic

Your spectator can see and hear the borrowed marked coin falling right into the paper bag.

To add humor to your act, you insert the small key into the tiny hole of the bulldog clip as if to unlock it.

Then you remove the bulldog clip, and you ask the spectator to cup both his two hands and holds them under the paper bag.

You shake the bag up and down vigorously, until the bottom of the paper bag tears apart, thus spilling out the loose coins together with the metal box.

Of course the spectator could not find his marked coin among the scattered coins.

Using the small key, the spectator himself opens the locked Strong Box, and surprisingly he finds his own marked coin inside it.

This is the Joe Porper’s Strong Box performed with Gaetan Bloom’s routine:

At the onset, the lid of the Strong Box is opened, but hidden inside the paper bag from the viewers’ eyes.

How To Close The Strong Box Inside Paper Bag?

To secretly close the metal box, they all do the same routine by shaking the folded paper bag, under the pretext of straightening it up.

Gaetan Bloom Routine Strong Box

This is the part of the video, where after he has removed the bulldog clip, you can see him gently shaking the paper bag.

Similarly from this video, after he has removed the bulldog clip, he opens the mouth of the paper bag to check on the box inside.

Then he shakes it lightly, as if to neaten up the crumpled paper bag.

Strong Box Routine By Gaetan Bloom

Actually he is secretly closing up the metal box, with the aid of the inner sides of the paper bag, together with the shaking movements.

Magician Lu Chen Strong Box Trick

So is this is the famous Taiwanese magician Lu “Louis” Chen (劉謙) does during his performance for CCTV-15.

He gives the paper bag a light shake, before he unclips it.

Then he opens the bag and takes a peek inside, to make sure the metal box is properly closed.

Watch magician Lu Chen performing Joe Porper’s Strong Box with the brown paper bag.


Joe Porper’s Strong Box 2.0 Secret Exposed

Joe Porper Strong Box Version 2

This is my reveal of the Joe Porper’s Strong Box 2.0 which is solely based on analyzing the pictures taken from websites.

If I am not wrong, there is no video clip available in the internet demonstrating Joe Porper’s Strong Box 2.0.

As I have mentioned above, with this new version of the Strong Box, you do not need a paper bag or anything to cover it.

You need to palm the borrowed item and with the help of misdirection, just like performing with a Lippincott Box.

Secret Slot Behind Strong Box 2.0 Revealed

I think the secret slot is between the lid and the box, as indicated in the picture below.

But at this point you cannot see the secret slot from this picture is because it is still hidden away.

Joe Porper Strong Box Magic

Look at the differences of the box interior and where the lid attached to the box of these two versions of the Strong Box.

This is the original version, and it is just like a normal box with an attached lid.

The interior walls of the box with four sharp right angle corners.

Joe Porper Lippincott Box
The second version of the Strong Box, the interior area design and the way the lid is attached to the box are different (as indicated in the picture below).

Joe Porper Strong Box Version Two Secret

The four corners are curved and there is an extra feature between the lid and the back piece of the box.

The four rounded corners, particularly the two corners where the lid is attached to is crucial to the secret slot design.

Strong Box Magic Trick Secret

Now take a closer look at the inside view of the lid pivoted to the box.

Strong Box Magic Trick Exposed

There is a slim eaves trough-like piece underneath the lid.

In fact, they are pivoted together to the side walls of the box.

As it is pivoted, it is movable.

strong box magic secret slot

This pivoted curved metal strip trough is to hide the secret slot.

Next, look at these two pictures below, where the lid is slightly shorter than the width of the box.

Joe Porper Strong Box Secret Revealed

Strong Box By Joe Porper

The box lid is slightly loose-fitting, so it can be shifted slightly to the front and back.

To open the secret slot at the back of the box, you slide the lid forward a little.

Now there is a narrow slot or gap between the lid and the box, but you still cannot see the secret slot because it is blocked by the trough-like piece inside the box.

This is how the secret slot of Joe Porper’s Strong Box looks like without being blocked by the trough-like piece.

Strong Box Penetration Secret

When you push the coin, ring or the billet into the slot, the pivoted trough piece inside will move inward.

Once the item has dropped into the bottom of the box, this swiveled trough piece will swing back to block the tiny gap.

The trough-like piece works somewhat similar to the pivoted flap at the slot of a mailbox.

To close up the secret slot completely, you slide the lid backward so that it is aligned with the back side of the box.

If my explanation of how this trick works above is correct, then I agree with one reviewer mentioned in the Penguin Magic site.

He or she said the secret of this Strong Box 2.0 version can be accidentally discovered if it is handled out for examination.

Fake Joe Proper Strong Box

Interestingly, the ripoff or fake Strong Box (picture below) comes with the magnetic mechanism of Joe Porper’s original version, but the interior design features of the box is similar to the version 2.0.

Fake Joe Porper Strong Box Mainland China

Another obvious feature of the pirated Strong Box from Mainland China is there are no screws around the box.

Well, whether these so-called Joe Porper Strong Box trick secret are correct or not, I not too sure.

As according to Edgar Allan Poe quote, taken from his 1845 short story “The System of Dr. Tarr And Prof. Fether” :

Believe nothing you hear, and only one half that you see.

Magic Puzzle Boxes 

These are not different versions of Lippincott Boxes or Watch Boxes.

Their similarity to Lippincott Box or Joe Porper’s Strong Box is solid through solid penetration effect.

It is how do the small borrowed items gets into these seemingly sealed boxes.

But these props are marketed as puzzle boxes, or brain-teasers.

They are called by various names, and they made of either
wood or clear plastic.

Among the product names are: Mexican Bill Box, Wonder Bill Box, Wonder Treasure Box, Magic Treasure Box and Wonderfool Box.

They are fortified-looking boxes, and there are ones which have round glass windows or slits.

You hand the box to your spectators and ask them to look inside and try to open the mysterious box.

Then you borrow a bank note, or any other small object that can fit into box.

Now hide the box away from your spectators’ view for a second or two, behind your back, under the table or napkin, etc.

Magically the item is now trapped inside the locked box.

Again pass the box to your spectators and ask them to open the box to get the item from the inside the box.

All these baffling boxes share the same secret working method, by sliding out the drawer.

There are two locking gimmicks are well hidden away as indicated in the picture below.

Wonder Bill Box Secret Locking Gimmicks

Like all the other puzzles and magic tricks, if you do not know the solution, then you are unable to open these boxes right away.

There are so many so-called simple or easy magic tricks which you might know how they work.

Anyway, let’s check out these magic boxes.

Wooden Wonder Bill Box

Wooden Wonder Bill Box

Wooden Wonder Bill Box Secret

Wooden Wonder Bill Box Secret

Watch this video showing you how to open the hidden drawer of this wooden Wonder Bill Box.

Clear Plastic Wonderfool Box

Wonderfool Box

Clear Plastic Wonderfool Box Secret

Wonderfool Box Secret

Watch this video showing you how to open the sealed clear plastic Wonderfool Box.


Free Books:

Ring On Wineglass Stem Pete Biro
Pete Biro’s Original: Ring On Wineglass As performed By Fred Kapps
Click on any of these: Link 1, Link 2, Link 3

Linking Finger Rings

Linking Finger Rings (from Pete Biro’s book “The Real Secrets Of The Chinese Linking Rings“)
Click on this: Link

Free Books On Linking Rings Tricks

Jack Miller's Linking Ring Routine Free Book
Jack Miller’s Linking Ring Routine
Click on this: Link

Linking Ring Manipulation Dariel Fitzkee PDF

Linking Ring Manipulation By Dariel Fitzkee
Click on any of these: Link 1, Link 2, Link 3

Slydini Liking Ring Routine By D. Angelo Ferri

The Linking Rings: An Intensive Study Of The Slydini Liking Ring Routine By D. Angelo Ferri
Click on this: Link


Disclaimer: I do not  publish or host any of the books here. They are copyrighted to their respective owners. All content cited here is derived from their respective sources.