Years ago I built a set of soft pins for the linking pins trick out of giant 5 inch safety pins. These aren’t as easy to make as you’d think. There are a couple of challenges, like the safety pin take a lot of force to open and close. The tension on the spring make getting the pin over the lip a challenge to open and close the soft pin.
My solution was to cut off the lip of the safety pin, so that the the pin had less distance to travel, making it easier to open and close the soft pin.
That partially solved the problem the of opening and closing the soft pin. The final part was to shorten the needle of the pin, so that it was easier to load things on and off of the safety pin.
After that, the final alteration was to bend the pin so that it functioned like a traditional soft pin. I’ve been using these pins for years and they work great. I’ve seen in magic groups on the internet people ask about gimmicking these giant safety pins and other magicians say that you can’t. Those magicians are wrong and I’ve intentionally not really mentioned you could. I liked keeping this thing for me…or so I thought.
Recently while digging through a junk magic bin I found this:
In this book from 1994, Jose De La Torre came to almost the exact same solution as me…but 30 years before me! While I’m disappointed I’m not the first person to solve this problem, I’m also not surprised. Scaling it up in size logical extension of the close up linking safety pins.