How I became in love with Tenyo: R. Breyer and Jeremy Pej

A looong time ago I became familiar with Tenyo thanks to Youtube videos uploaded by Magic Patagonia, made/performed by Roberto B. , I was not aware they were often discontinued and were hard to find: Mirage, Ultra Tube, Billscape, and many others ... . WOW! I had NO IDEA how these worked ... .The golden age of Tenyo. Mechanical marvels. The use of small mirrors ... .

This is his channel on youtube.

While Roberto was and is the person who got me into Tenyo magic, not that long ago someone else got my attention: Jeremy Pei.

His videos are entertaining and very professionally done. I contacted him a few months ago and asked him about who he was because he sometimes told something about his father in his videos.

He told me his late dad is not an active performing magician but he had big support in the Magic Clubs in Singapore till the early 90's. He collected a lot of Tenyo from what I understood.

This is his channel. Judge by yourself. These are, in my opinion, about the best Tenyo demonstrations you can find out there. He also performs other collectible Tenyo-like magic.


Comparison of the Atomic Glass Penetration effect by Magic Wagon and Limited Editions Magic

This very deceptive trick has always been one of my favourites. It has been around for many years. It has been used as a stage version by for example Dutch magician Fred Kaps as you can see in the video bellow (in Dutch).

There are also multiple close-up versions. I believe Peter Warlock was the first person to have built one. You can find more information on this excellent website made by Andy Martin.

Recently (well, more or less, both are out of production and have become very collectible), versions have been made by Magic Wagon and Limited Editions Magic.

Left: Magic Wagon - right: Limited Editions Magic

Front and back panels

The front and back panels in the Magic Wagon version are held together with a piece of wood on top. There is a recess on the bottom where the panels are placed into. This makes it very stable.

Lt. Editions Magic version uses magnets.


As you can see the MW version is taller. Both are exactly the same width however.


The mechanism is exactly the same. Both work very fluently. However, 

- the 'middle' position on the MW version is indicated with a mark,

- the 'middle' position on the Lt. EM has a small recess which you can 'feel' and which therefore makes it possible (or at least, easier) to place the necessary thing in the middle position without looking.


Luckily both come with a glass panel, not a plexiglass one. I refuse to buy magic tricks that use plexi; it is almost impossible to remove markings/scratches which are almost always present after many uses.

The glass panel of the Lt. EM version (right on the photo) is about 1 mm wider. The panel of the MW version (left on the photo) is taller.

Both glass panels are perfectly clear of course - I used a red pillow with some motifs beneath them to make a picture to compare them which wasn't the best idea it seems ... .

Materials used

The MW version is made intirely of wood. The Lt. ED version uses wood and brass which also makes it quite a bit heavier.


Both versions have the same build quality: excellent.


Both versions are very deceptive, however the Lt. EM version looks a bit more 'impossible' because of its smaller size and more importantly the two brass 'pilars' on the left and right side.


Tenyo 2023

Last friday I received three of the new Tenyo tricks for 2023, and oh boy, this has got to be one of Tenyo's best line-ups from the past years!

Size Surprise

I did not buy Size Surprise but I'm confident, if performed fluently, it will get a nice reaction from your audience (especialy chidren). I will eventually buy it for a gig I will do for my now 6-year old, son, Benjamin - it is very visual and a nice introduction for a childs magic show when using (playing) cards.

The original demo by Tenyo

Mister Danger

Mister Danger - There has been a lot of praise for this new classic (as in self working, mechanical, examinable (more or less) and baffling) Tenyo. As most of you who collect Tenyo or other magic items, I also thought I had an idea of what was going on/how the gimmick would work. And while not completely wrong, Tenyo surprised me, like in the good old days. It was really an 'aha-erlebnis' - a feeling of 'it's actually so simple, why didn't I think of that?'... . FUN!

An excellent handling by Yasuo Amano

I love the effect and it will become a classic for sure. I have read some people did have some problems with the quality: the clear front door falls of because the hinges aren't tall enough and the figurine gets stuck and doesn't fall out of the case at the end of the trick without some help. The version I had did not have the 'door-issue' but the figurine indeed needs some help to come out of the case.

  • hinge-issue: John Talbot suggests the following procedure: "I boiled some water and poured in a bowl. I dipped the two clear hinge tabs on the clear door into the hot water for 5 seconds or so. Then gently squeezed the tabs inwards a bit. The door now fits perfectly and does not come off. Was a quick fix that worked great for me."
    As mentioned I did not have this issue but I must confess when I 'wiggle' the panel up and down it does come of very easily. I have done the following for now: when storing the trick I place a tight rubber band on the hinges/door and I hope they will eventually bend a little inwards and there is no risk of the door falling of.
  • figurine does not 'fall out' of the case: I actually do not think this is an issue. Tenyo did include a note (probably because they found out after the manual had been written) saying you need to push the figurine out with one of the swords. This is definately necessary with the copy I bought, I really need to push it in the case so it doesn't come out without some pressure form the back. It helps to convince the spectators the figurine can't move, and I believe thats fine. If you would like the figurine to come out at the end of the trick without the help of a sword I suggest you leave it inside the case, put it in, push it out several times , ... . 
  • sound-issue: the trick does 'talk', but the manual clearly sais to 'do something very slow' ... . No problem with my version, but even when you hear something most people won't notice I believe. Some practice handling the props may also help.

Is it 100% examinable? No, it is not. I have quite a large collection of magic and there are very few tricks that are 100% examinable actually, most of the time there is a switch involved or you need to casually 'ditch' something. I would say this trick is very examinable when handing the pieces to different spectators. You can buy more than one copy and switch something, as has been mentioned on several fora. Applying pressure on the figurine when inside the box at exactly the right spot will also reveal what is happening ... . 

I put the figurine in the box, it sits very snugly. I may than ask spectators to push the figurine upside down and from right to left. That way they have 'tried' to move it and are convinced it does not move. Perhaps that's overdoing it, I know ... .

Final Piece

Why most people's favorite Tenyo is Mr. Danger, this one is my favorite. I have seen this trick before on television and thought is was superb, but it was very expensive. Not anymore ... Tenyo released this wonderfull magic trick and the quality is excellent (Tenyo is actually a company that mainly makes ... jigsaw puzzles!). 

Not only that, but Tenyo made the handling very easy to do. Some people suggest using a force bag but I think that's not really necessary ... . The plastic box Tenyo provides is sufficient and looks less suspicious. I mean, I do own a few force-bags (one from clear plastic, one from sort of a net-like material) and both look like, well, magic items. If using a force bag I suggest you make your own from a bag from for example a local grocery store.

A wonderfull performance by Craig Petty

In  any case, as already said, this is my favourite effect from the Tenyo 2023 line - it's easy to do (the patter Tenyo suggests in the manual is excellent) and it makes for a very nice story-telling magic trick. I do know most (professional) performers are very reluctant in using Tenyo in their performances, but I think this is one trick they can actually use. The quality is excellent and the effect is strong. 

Lucky Strings

I don't read/see/hear a lot of this trick, but Lucky Strings is actually very good! It does require some arts and crafts (applying the stickers is not very easy; I messed up on the front side but that's OK).

I found this nice video on YouTube.

The effect itself is excellent, and the bell is very suitable for Christmas-performances. It works great and applying a sticker as the manual suggests makes it even stronger. I will be using this one for sure.

Tenyo has done it again - releasing some absolutely great effects at low cost. Inflation clearly didn't effect Tenyo because the prices are in line with the previous years, and so is the quality.


Invisible Zone and 4D Surprise back available

For those of you who aren't aware, Invisible Zone and 4D Surprise are back available in some shops! Both were invented by Lubor Fiedler and are considered to be among Tenyo's best tricks ever.

When browsing the internet I realized a lot of shops have already sold out one or both items ... . They 'should' be back in stock by the end of may but this is in no way certain. I ordered one of each at a German shop but quickly got a reply 4D surprise was out of stock - the last few copies sold the day before.

Sorry for those who bought one or both the past year or so because they were sold for very high prices, especially at some auction sites. And while not common, Tenyo does rerelease a discontinued item from time to time. A few +1 tricks (Magical Sneakers to name one) and Crystal Cleaver are examples.

I do wonder why Tenyo decided to rerelease 4D Surprise and Invisible Zone. Were they becoming aware some older Tenyo items were/are in high demand among magicians or people who buy magic tricks in general? 

Which raises the question: can we expect other discontinued items becoming available again?

[EDIT/UPDATE april 30th] A friend of mine on the Tenyo forum just made me realize Tenyo has two other tricks which have been rereleased: OH-NO! and 4D-trunk. Thanks Rob ;-)

[EDIT/UPDATE may 5th] It seems 4D-trunk is also back available. It was discontinued a few years ago.


Check your batteries before it's too late

I was going through my Tenyo collection when I found an (almost) leaking battery in Mindscanner (T-154). Luckily it didn't damage the appartus itself ... pfew. Which raises the question what Tenyo tricks need 'battery - attention' ... ? 

New, button cell batteries, hardly leak. However, sometimes, when used, do ... . The older AA and AAA-types tend to leak after a (very) long time when not being used. Needless to say it could damage the apparatus.

Tenyo, as other comapanies, protect the batteries with a thin plastic sleeve; the plastic wrap or cover over the battery protects it from leaking.

Anyway, here is a list of Tenyo items that use electronics/batteries and perhaps, when not in use, you should check from time to time ... .

  • GHOST LAMP (T-245)
  • THE THIRD EYE (T-250)

  • In case I missed one, please send me a message - thanks.


    Tenyo for sale or trade

    Since my last post, for some reason (people probably thought I wasn't around anymore?), several people have asked about which items I have for sale or trade. I realize I have a page on my website dedicated to tricks I am selling, but for now I simply do not have the time to update it.

    So, if you are interested in old Tenyo items, I do have a *.pdf file with the items I am willing to sell with their asking price. Just contact me using the 'Contact form' on the left.


    It has been almost 3 years ...

    since I updated this website 😲. A few recent e-mails were a real wake up call.

    I currently don't have a lot of time to update regularly (nothing new here) but will try to at least post something interesting once in a while. For example, it seems a lot of people aren't aware Tenyo does have its own Youtube channel with a lot of interesting stuff, called 'Mr. Tenyo' - check it out: https://www.youtube.com/user/mrtenyo.

    I may also add my interest in magic is not what it used to be - it has been partly replaced with another hobby: Lego. Since my son, Benjamin, 5 years old now, took an interest in Duplo and Lego (it started in the lockdown last year), I must confess I started spending (a lot) of money on Lego sets, so called for my son, but actually for me (and him when he gets older of course) 😊.

    For now I'm going to check this website for errors/non-working links and update some of the articles.

    By the way, here are my personal 'preview' thoughts about Tenyo's new 2022 releases (I do not have them yet, so my opinion might change when I have played with them).

    Wild Shock - I like this. Yes, it is a well known routine which uses a few gimmicked cards. Tenyo added something special to the deck it seems. It doesn't use Bicycle-cards unfortunately, but hey, where I live (Belgium) no one actually cares since Bicycle isn't a brand of cards that is common in my country (or Europe for that matter).

    Blink Bank - Looks great on camera, but for me this is not a stand alone trick. If it works as good as it seems it is a nice addition to tricks that use papers/bills.

    Future Photo - The forcing of the card is very obvious for us, but perhaps not for laymen. I don't really like the use of a Smartphone in magic tricks ... and this one is no exception. Nonetheless, if you like these kind of tricks, it may be well worth it.

    Flash Cube - looks interesting, and happy that it doesn't use the same method as Instant portrait. As with all the non-card items this year, it seems to be a bit cheaply made, but I could be wrong.

    Phone Appetit - perhaps it's great for Halloween, the mask looks plain scary to me. Perhaps I watched IT too many times ... . 

    Image Generator pocket edition - I payed a LOT for the original T-shirt but have never used it to be honest. It's a good trick. It uses an old principle in magic but it is, well, okido. I have no idea what the selling price is, but I did find one for sale in Japan for 50+ USD, which is absolutely ridiculous.

    From a person's view who collects Tenyo magic tricks, this is not an amazingly good year (at least it seems that way, I don't have the tricks in hand). I do appreciate Tenyo keeping the sale price of the tricks low and still have unique, easy to do and (at least for laymen) baffling tricks.