Reference Guide
to the
Linking Safety Pins

Linking Pins

Last Updated: Apr 2021: Added Jerri Marquerie's Imperdiworld Platinum Safety Pins

Introduction: One of the first references to the linking safety pins was the effect Piff Paff Poof, which is credited to Gene Gordon who marketed the effect in the early 1930's. The Genii Magicpedia article referenced below (which in turn references the Jon Racherbaumer article in the Oct 2006 MUM) states the first printing of a presentation was in the Dec 1934 Linking Ring magazine. Piff Paff Poof is not really a linking pin trick, but rather an unlinking trick, performed with un-gimmicked pins. Piff Paff Poof also saw print in Hilliard's Greater Magic, which credited "as performed by Don White" in 1938. That same year, Sid Lorraine published his comedy patter for the routine.

In 1943, L. Vosburg Lyons effect Slip, Snap, Spoof was printed in the November issue of The Phoenix. This routine introduced the specially gimmicked pin that was later made famous by Jerry Andrus. Jerry Andrus' Safety Pin Trix book & gimmick set has been regarded as the pinnacle of the Linking Safety Pins by many, at least until the early 1980's. Then in 1982, Han van Senus published Un-Safety Pins in the Apocalypse Feb 1982 edition, which seemed to spark the linking pins routine again. The Senus' pin is a "soft" pin, that can also be examined.

Since then, there have been a few other versions, such as the Slydini pins and Dreamweaver, though I don't have them all so I'm not certain of their exact differences.

Some good references to the Linking Safety Pins can be found here:

Search "linking safety pins" on

The booklet from Houdini Magic that comes with Stealth Linking Pins, written by Geno Munari, reportedly has a lot of Linking Pin history.

and finally, Jon Racherbaumer has an article in the October 2006 edition of the MUM outlining much of the Linking Pin history.

Note: none of the following items is for sale from this website. This is merely a guide to help you find books, articles, videos and products on the Linking Safety Pin effect. Check with your local magic dealer or places like e-Bay for availability. I apologize for any inaccuracies in the following list.

Books: (click on a book title to see the table of contents page for that book)

Alan, Don: Pretty Sneaky. 1956. Includes Bent Pins, an effective comedy ending for your linking pins routine.

Andrus, Jerry: Safety Pin-Trix: An Array of Truly Bewildering Effects with the Lowly Safety Pin. 1955 Star Magic, 70 pages. Was revised in 1972 by Star Magic, and reprinted in 2006 by Chazpro Magic.

Blackstone, Harry: Blackstone's Tricks Anyone Can Do. 1949. Includes Safety Pin Snapper: Linked safety pins separate but remain closed. This is an explanation of Piff Paff Pouf and is without any drawings.

Brahams, Anthony & Mike Porstmann: Karl Norman 40 Years at the Forks. (see also Karl Norman's Here's How). Includes Karl's Linking Pins routine.

Dayton, Ronald: Dayton's Delights. Includes a section with several pin routines: Master Pin, Link-King Pin, and Pin Money.

Diamond, Paul: The Final Curtain Call. Includes Piff Paff Poof, a comedy ending similar to Don Alan's

Elliott, Bruce: Magic as a Hobby. 1948. Includes a  brief discussion of Piff Paff Poof, and L. Vosburg Lyons' "Slip Snap Spoof" gimmicked pin

Fare, Jean: Card Tricks, French Style. 1977. Includes Linking Pins and Multiple Coin Switch among the card tricks

Fulves, Karl: Self-Working Table Magic. 1981. Includes a Chapter on the Linking Pins.

Garcia, Frank & George Schindler: Amedeo's Continental Magic. 1974. Includes Amedeo's Pin-Tration routine

Garrett, Dan
: Closeup Connivery #2. 1988. Includes Pin-Demonium, based on Senus' soft-pin idea.

Garret, Dan: Garrett's Top 10 Lecture Notes. 1996. A later source for Pin-Demonium, based on Senus' soft-pin idea.

Hilliard, John: Greater Magic. 1938. Includes Don White's presentation of Piff Paff Pouf for a slow unlink.

Klayder, Jim: Watch Closely. 1978. Includes Locked (Safety Pins); Uses an Lyons' gimmicked pin, a regular pin, and a small padlock for a quick comedy bit

Kosky, Gerald: The Magic of Gerald Kosky. 1975

Lorraine, Sid: Patter. 1938, pp. 43-44. Patter for the standard Piff Paff Poof

Mellville, Leslie: Magictales - The Definitive Book of Storytelling Magic. 2006. Includes The Friendly Witch and Her Linking Pins, a comic rhyming routine for the Slydini Pins

Norman, Karl: Here's How, the Close-Up Magic of Karl Norman. 1985. Later reprinted as Karl Norman 40 Years at the Forks. Includes Karl Norman's Linking Pins,  using the "soft" pin method, and incorporates the handkerchief

Racherbaumer, Jim: At the Table. 1984. Anthology of JR's "At the Table" column from M-U-M. Including Hunter's Foop Fapp Fipp and Super Pin Routine.

Scarne, John: Scarne's Magic Tricks, 1951. Includes Solid Through Solid: a safety pin is pulled through another safety pin.

Spillman, Steve: My Hands Can Be Yours. 1973 Includes thoughts on Linking Pins: more ideas for Jerry Andrus' Linking Pins

Thompson, J.G.: Magic to Delight. 1970. Includes Safety-Pin Up, II, further thoughts on the Linking Safety Pins as a follow up to his article in Top Secrets of Magic.

Thompson, J.G.: Top Secrets of Magic, Vol. 1. 1956. Describes E.G. Ervin pin variation (slightly gimmicked regular pin); the Lyons/Andrus pin; and a full routine.

Torre, Jose De La: The Incredible Linking Pins. 1993, 41 pages. 3 Safety pins Link & unlink in a very astonishing manner

Tremaine, Jon: The Amazing Book of Magic & Card Tricks. 2000. Includes a chapter on Safety Pin tricks, to include Spooky Matches (two pins magically unlink); Hanky Panky (pin removed from hanky); A Ripping Yarn! (pin doesn't damage hanky); Drop Out (pins instantly open when dropped to table); and Pin in a Spin (matchstick penetrates safety pin)

Weber, Michael: Life Savers. 1991. Includes An End to Pindemonium - linking safety pins routine


Andrus, Jerry: Andrus' Giant Safety Pins; The Linking Ring, Vol. 37 No. 9 (November 1957, pp. 73-75).

Bartram, Richard Jr.: Pinatrated Bill. safety pin pushed through end of a dollar is pulled to the other end and ripped off the bill. Bill is unharmed. (need to check). Apocalpyse Vol 10, No. 4, April 1987.

Bauer, Ron: Linking Pins Routine; The New Tops, Vol. 2 No. 2 (February 1962, pp. 6-7).
- Using the Lyons' style pins and a diaper; utilizes gags from Sid Lorraine's Patter and Don Alan's Bent Pins gag

Biro, Pete: A Combination Routine; M-U-M, Vol. 58 No. 2 (July 1968, pp. 40-41).

Dafter, Edwin: Safety Pin Routine. Linking Ring, Apr 1953

Ellis, Tom: Linking Pin Moves; The Chronicles, No. 4 (April 1978, pp. 1103-1104).

Gardner, Martin: Hugards Magic Monthly, Jan/Feb 1957. Three quickies described - Pif Paf Poof, safety pin through handkerchief, and pin release from handkerchief

Garrett, Dan: Variation of Han Van Senus' Un-Safety Pins under "variations or addition" column, Apocalpyse Vol 6, No. 7, July 1983

Hjalmang, A: New Piff-Paff-Pouferie; Abracadabra, Vol. 29 No. 743 (May 23, 1960, pp. 233-234).

Hunter, Jim: Foop Fapp Fipp; M-U-M, Vol. 67 No. 12 (May 1978, pp. 20-21). Jon Racherbaumer's At the Table Column.

Joseph, Eddie: Piff Paff Poof. The Tops, Vol. 4 No. 2 (February 1939, p. 9). Eddie's presentation of the standard Piff Paff Poof effect with ungimmicked pins

Kosky, Gerald: Piff-Paff-Poof Variation; Genii, Vol. 36 No. 9 (September 1972, p. 405). Slightly gimmicked pin for a slow pull-apart version of Piff Paff Poof

Lyons, L.Vosburg: Slip, Snap, Spoof; The Phoenix, No. 47 (Nov. 5, 1943, pp. 192-193)
- A uniquely gimmicked pin with reference to the Audley Walsh routine

Marlo, Ed: Super Pin Routine; M-U-M, Vol. 68 No. 5 (October 1978, pp. 20-23). From Jon Racherbaumer's At the Table Column.
- Routine with four pins, two for the standard Piff Paff Poof, and one Andrus/Lyons pin and matching regular pin

Pentel, Jens: Pinza Movement. Comedy pins become permanently linked in spectator's hand. From Stephen Tucker's Chicanery, Volume 1, Issue 9, February 1987

Poisson, Jean: New Light on Piff, Paff, Pouf; Hugard's Magic Monthly, Vol. 10 No. 10 (March 1953, pp. 1053, 1056).
- Using the Lyons style pin

Racherbaumer, Jon: Safety Pin Magic. M-U-M, Vol. 96 No. 5 (October 2006, pp. 48-49). A Summary of many approaches.

Rainho, Jim: Linking Pins Routine (Jim Rainho): M-U-M, Vol. 70 No. 12 (May 1981, p. 36).
- Uses Andrus/Lyons pin - routine to leave an examinable set of linked pins in spectator's hands

Rink of Holland: Climax for a Safety-Pin Routine; The Gen, Vol. 13 No. 6 (October 1957, pp. 180-181).
- Two Climaxes for any pin routine - provides specators with linked pins that can't be unlinked, and a growing pin

Rink of Holland: Rinking Pins; The Gen, Vol. 15 No. 12 (April 1960, pp. 300-304).
- New moves using the Andrus/Lyons pins

Senus, Han van: Un-Safety Pins; Apocalypse, Vol. 5 No. 2 (February 1982, pp. 589-591).
- Han van Senus intruduces a new "soft pin" gimmick.

Slydini: The Mystery of the Gold Pins; Apocalypse, Vol 1. No. 10 (October 1978, pp. 109-114).
- Uses a slight variation of the Andrus/Lyons gimmiced pin.

Stanfield, John: A Routine With Jerry Andrus' Linking Pins; The Linking Ring, Vol. 53 No. 9 (September 1973, pp. 94-95).

Straus, Ed: Idea for pin switch for Slydini's Gold Pins, from the Ellipses column in Apocalypse pg 180

Thompson, J.G.: Safety Pin-up (J. G. Thompson, Jr.): M-U-M, Vol. 45 No. 12 (May 1956, pp. 552-560).

Tong, Danny: Two Pins & the 'Kerchief; The New Jinx, Vol. 6 No. 68 (December 1967, p. 277).

Torre, Jose de la: The Incredible Linking Pins: M-U-M, Vol. 73 No. 8 (January 1984, pp. 17-19). Uses the Senus soft-pin gimmmick

Van Zandt, W. F.: The Linking Ring, Vol. 14 No. 10 (December 1934, pp. 841-842)

Walsh, Audley: Pin Perplexer, The Phoenix, No. 41 (Aug. 6, 1943, p. 170). A non-gimmicked pin routine where 6 pins are placed in the fist and they all become linked


Andrus, Jerry: Lifetime of Magic DVD. Vol 3. Includes Linking Pins (performance only): See Andrus perform the now classic routine he popularized where three safety pins link and unlink under impossible conditions. Murphy's Magic. $35.

Bloom, Gaetan: Smashing Close-Up. 1984, VHS. Includes Ultimate Linking Pins

Diamond, Paul: Hardcore Volume 2 DVD. 2001 L&L Publishing (originally Videonics VHS). Includes Something Different With Safety Pins

Flip: Very Best of Flip Volume 1 (Flip in Close Up Part 1). DVD L&L Publishing. Includes Flip Pins, which also appears on World's Greatest Magic - Close Up Magic #1

Norman, Karl: Close Up Table Magic DVD. Murphy's Magic. Includes Linking Pins: A quick routine with two safety pins that penetrate each other, move across the length of a handkerchief, penetrate through a handkerchief and finally link to each other.

Slydini: As I Recall DVD. Includes Bob Yorburg performing "Slydini's Linking Pins"

Stone, Sol: Quick & Casual Close-Up DVD. 2002, Meir Yedid Magic. Includes Acupuncture

Torre, Jose De La: Warren Kaps & Friends "Magic from MUM" VHS video. Includes performance of The Incredible Linking Pins


Andrus, Jerry: Linking Safety Pins. Chazpro. Comes complete with four regular pins and one expertly gaffed pin. This set features a new routine by Chuck Leach

Andrus, Jerry: Linking Safety Pins; 1954 Star Magic, Marketed item

Aranana: Mr. Pearl's: PINcredible. Linking pins link or unlink in front of spectator's eyes, are examinable, and could be given away.

Bengston, Nicholas: Dreamweaver Linking Safety Pins. 2004 Enchantment. Pins, gaff, and 20 page routine.

Bernstein, Bruce: Linking Pins. 1991. Pins and routine with DVD.

Blake, George: Plexus Pins. 1960 commercial product. Search Youtube for an excellent performance by Pete Stedman, assisted by Jack Stevens

Bloom, Gaetan: Linking Pins. Mayette Magie Moderne. Gimmicked pins and DVD (dual language). Variation of the Slydini pins that allows for examination, and the pins are much longer.

Burke, Eddie: Piff Paff Poof Outdone: product produced in the early 1970's though Magictrix House of Magic. Included gimmicked pins and a 2 page manuscript. (seen on an eBay sale)

Garrett, Dan & Bob Sheets: Pin-Demonium, or Grab Your Pin Head. DVD and pins. An enhanced version of Garrett's Pin-Demonium.

Gordon, Gene: Piff-Paff-Poof. Marketed item, circa 1935.

Kaushal, Manoj: Manoj Linking Pins. Includes linking gimmick pins and bonus gimmicked pins and DVD instructions.

Mak Magic: Linking Pins Plus.

Marquerie, Jarri: Imperdiworld - Platinum Safety Pins. Designed to allow you to perform almost any Linking Safety Pin routine. Set includes 1 key Slidyni, 1 Jerry Andrus key, 1 Jarry Marquerie key (invisible), 2 Normal-modified, 1 Waning, 1 transport bag. With DVD instructions.

Mayhew, Chris: Safety. From Ellusionist

Munari, Geno (Houdini Magic) Stealth Linking Pins. Gimmicked pins, and 30 page booklet includes a good bibliography

Palmer Magic: Slydini Pins, 1984 marketed item - includes Slydini 5 stage routine, Twist Linking by Palmer, and more

Stanfield, John: Play Pins; Marketed item, 1978.