Disecto has been a staple in the magic community for many years. I first used mine in the late seventies (as I put myself through college with a small magic act). One of the true packs flat plays big type effects on the market.
I really do not see any cons with this effect except that it is a chopper effect and it probably shouldn't be done for small children. Other than that, its nearly a perfect effect.
The blade can be passed up and down as many times as you like (something that many guillotines cannot do), you can place small pieces of carrot or celery in the holes above and below Disecto and they will cut them (using breadsticks and pretzels works as well, but you will have crumbs and pretzels shooting out of your Disecto when they break).
You can do this with an assistant, with a person from the audience, or on yourself. It's very versatile in that manner. Disecto packs very flat and travels well. Setup time is a couple of seconds and can be set up in front of an audience.
Not a whole lot to go wrong, but be sure to try this out on your own hand first, just to make sure there is no possibility of accidentally cutting a person with one of these (Abbott's makes its own in house but imported versions from India and China may not be as fine tuned as the local ones). This is really one of those effects that you will be able to work right out of the box so really the main item would be a good presentation of this effect.
This is one of those effects that can be as creepy and scary as you like. You see this effect often dressed up for Halloween shows, many performers who do this on a regular basis have a second that is usually painted white (like a surgical device) with splatterings of blood around it. It makes for a very macabre setting especially with a few severed limbs lying around it. Great for the mad scientist routine in magic spook shows.
Abbotts "DISECTO" provides mystery, entertainment, ingenuity and quality construction. Show the spectators how the "DISECTO" works by cutting three carrots; one where the victims hand is inserted, one above the hand and one below the hand. With the blade in full view of all, the victims hand is now inserted in the "DISECTO" and held in place with the locking pieces attached for that purpose. A carrot is placed in the top hole, another is placed in the bottom hole and a lighted cigar or cigarette is placed in the opening alongside the victims hand.
Slowly and deliberately the magician forces the blade through the first carrot, cutting it cleanly into two pieces - the blade still being visible. Even as the blade is forced through the victims wrist (and before it cuts through the lighted cigar of cigarette) the performer asks the victim if he or she can feel the blade and, strangely enough, they will say, "Yes!", for they do feel the blade!
As the blade passes through the victims wrist, at the same time it cuts through the lighted cigarette and then through the carrot in the lower hole. We unquestionably guarantee that there is no danger to the spectator - nothing can go wrong. Do "DISECTO" within six inches of the spectators and with the audience all around you. It is foolproof. Perfect for the largest of stages and any type audience.
The blade is 1/16 of an inch thick and 12 inches long and is of the highest grade polished stainless steel. Only one blade! You can perform Abbotts "DISECTO" in less than five minutes after you receive it. No previous preparation - always ready. Weight of the entire illusion is three pounds. The base supports fold flat for packing. The apparatus is finished in red, black and yellow lacquers. The unusual shape of "DISECTO" has been carefully designed to add further appeal, interest and attractiveness for your audiences. The unique design will intrigue and hold the undivided attention of all.
The idea for this illusion came from Lester "Marvelo" Lake, who originated the first Guillotine and Abbotts Chinese Chopper, and all details and application of the principles involved were worked out by Recil Bordner. We stake our reputation on this illusion and guarantee that this description is true and in no way exaggerated. A terrific magic value! (No workshop plans are available for "DISECTO".)