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dAvId tOnG
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sInGaPoRe
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Anybody know where I can get to learn Card Scaling? I know Ricky Jay's Book "Cards As Weapons" is the best source, but it is out of print for a long time. Is there any alternative source to learn that? thanks..
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Enigma
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Dear TONG!

I hate to tell you but Ricky Jay's book isn't a great source. There are no real sources. When you learned to throw a Baseball (assuming you ever did) it took practice and there were no real books on the subject, now that there are no one really reads them .... so learn a few finger and hand positions ... use credit cards and heavy material to get your handling down then practice practice practice with playing cards ... then you may get the world record one day which stands at 211 feet as of this year.

Enigma Smile
You got to stand for something or you will fall for anything .... unless you are tired and you need to lay down or at least sit down then it is ok not to stand, my own opinion of course.



Enigma
Burt Yaroch
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There are several online sources that detail the handling of chuckin' a card. Unfortunately none I can recall. Try google.
Yakworld.
MichelAsselin
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Bob Little and Paul Diamond can provide you with pointers.
" , ? ; !!! "
- Marcel Marceau, Feb 30, 1945.
MichelAsselin
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Cannot remember which one of the New York Magic Symposium books it is in, but there is a great John Kennedy routine in one of them, almost as great as card through window, which uses card scaling.

There are a couple of card throwing ideas in Tarbell #4 (I think - not sure) by Audley Walsh; Harry Lorayne had a similar thing in Reputation-Makers. Although not scaling per se, it 'blends in' well.
" , ? ; !!! "
- Marcel Marceau, Feb 30, 1945.
Tom Cutts
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There is a piece in "Now You See It, Now You Don't" on card scaling.

When I was a kid I would set out a box with particians, like a wine box, and see if I could get one card in each of the 12 sections going through just 52 cards.

I got to where I could scale a card 8-10 feet and then have it stall and flutter down into the box. Haven't figured out the use for that yet. Smile

So, my answer... hands on practice!!
Lonnie Dilan
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Canyon Country, California
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I heard that you can actually get a paperback version of cards as weapons at Barnes and Nobles the other day. I have not checked this out for myself though, but I thought you might want to know.
pyromagician
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P.S. this is what part of the alphabet would look like if "Q" and "R" were eleminated
r4bid
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http://students.db.erau.edu/~weddj/yatz.html
is a great source with a lot of Jay's style for throwing cards etc... It seems to be down now though?
fingerjack
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All right! A great topic I can relate to.

Card scaling, spinning, and throwing have been a hobby of mine for well over a decade. My experience comes from not only performing, but from years of deadly card battles with a group of close friends that I turned on to card throwing in when we were in high school. With all due modesty, I say with confidence that a good portion of you wouldn’t stand a chance against me in a card throwing battle royal, and none of us would stand a chance against my friend Glenn.

Here are some card throwing tips I share with you all, and I apologize for the long post, but maybe this will inspire or enlighten anyone interested.

Get a good card throwing book, either Ricky Jay’s CARDS AS WEAPONS (agreed that it’s more of a 70s joke than a card throwing manual) or Tom Osborne’s CARD SCALING. Some good methods (including Audley Walsh’s LONG DISTANCE SPINNER) can be found in TARBELL COURSE OF MAGIC, and Bill Tarr’s NOW YOU SEE IT, NOW YOU DON’T. Jeff McBride has a few methods in his ART OF CARD MANIPULATION videos, and many beginner books teach the basic throw. You may also want to get a martial arts manual on Ninja star throwing, as many techniques are similar to that of cards.

It’s all in the wrist, not the arm. It really is a two-step throw - wrist then arm. Strength has absolutely nothing to do with it. It’s all technique. Put a good spin on the card and it’s going to sail.

For a deadlier card, glue two or three together. You will also shoot more accurately and get much farther distance.

Buy a rubber TT (not a ‘magic’ TT, but the little ones that are sold as stationary stores that help bank tellers count bills). With this on, Walsh’s LONG DISTANCE SPINNER becomes a weapon of devastating force. You can shred your opponent machine gun style before he even knows what hit him. There is also a realistic magic TT called THUMBS UP that is perfect for this task. Go two fisted and you are the ultimate opponent, shooting up to three or four cards a second.

I can get the most distance with an underhand throw but am most accurate overhand.

Ricky Jay assures us TALLY HO is the best throwing card and who am I to disagree with Ricky Jay?

I know that cheaper cards (as well as bridge) do not fly as well as Bikes or Tally Hos. I think you could still practice with them for short distance and accuracy, but plastic coated never worked to well for me (they seem to spin out easily and get no distance). I suppose it depends on the person and their throwing style.

Some SORT KWIK or TACKY FINGER on your fingers will help give you better grip and aid in precision.

Throwing cards outdoors is nothing like throwing indoors, as a few trials will tell you. The wind currents outside (however minimal) are going to affect your throw, and sometimes it’s impossible to throw against the wind. Use Mother Nature and always throw with the wind.

If it’s boomeranging you are into, try it with two cards (bend them slightly opposite each other) and throw them as a double. With practice, you will see they will split at their highest point and you can catch one in each hand as they return. You could also learn some different ways to catch the card back in the deck (above or below a selected card) or slice them in half with a pair of scissors.

To get good at aiming, find a target straight in front of you (about 25 feet) and try to hit it dead on. Don’t adjust each throw, but just keep trying to hit it, this is where you see how you are shooting. Too far left? Too high? Only after a dozen throws should you analyze where you are shooting and THEN make the adjustment.

New cards throw much better than older ones, and it’s good to have the card as flat as possible. Bee cards never threw well, I contribute that to their flexibility.

Once a card busts a corner, you can forget about it. Incidentally, after one of our battles, we would all throw in a dollar or so and say “GO!” and whoever picked up the most cards won all the money. This was a fast and fun way to clean up. If you are by yourself…. Well, what comes easy in magic? For every card you have to bend down and pick up, know that you are that much better a card thrower.

The world record is only 201 feet. I’ve done 175, and Glenn has bested the record, but he had help from the wind. We threw cards with Jim Karol and he was quite impressed.

Seek out and STUDY the above mentioned books and learn the different techniques, or if you are REALLY lazy, go to
http://www.cardshooting.go.to/
Try out the different methods and see which one works best for you.

A minor note for those of you that get into card throwing as deeply as I did. Let’s not leave a mess of playing cards outside anywhere. Be respectful of our planet and pick them up. If it’s indoors or something, fine, you know someone will pick them up. But after awhile I started feeling pretty bad when I saw old, wet, mushy playing cards laying around in the parks and fields that we frequented. Just food for thought.

Lastly, be careful! You can get a serious sore arm (like severe Tennis elbow), especially because you are throwing something that weighs so little and offers no resistance. When you feel your arm starting to hurt, STOP, or I promise, you will be bumming for the next several days. I wound up in a sling at one pint, and I’m not kidding. You’ve been warned.

And finally, for the most fun of all, get all your card-throwing pals together, take off your shirts (like real men) and put on some safety goggles (no sense in going blind) and get a couple dozen decks of cards and try to kill each other. This is the most fun I have ever had. Be sure to show no mercy, as the scars your opponents will bare for the rest of their lives will insure they will always remember your card throwing superiority. That’s what I always did (just ask my little brother to lift his shirt).

What is card throwing anyway? Is it magic? No. Is it juggling? No. What the heck is it? In my opinion it’s the outer limits of eccentric magic. It has no real meaning or value, but it sure is cool at a party to say to everyone around you, “Hey, see that dude standing down there by the kitchen door?” and ZIIING, you gently pop him off the back of the head as he looks around in confusion. Now THAT, my friends, is fun.
dAvId tOnG
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Thank you, all of you, for providing me with the information. I got hooked when I saw Jeff McBride scaling cards high up into the circle seats in a theatre. That was terrific. I will continue my quest for learning it Smile
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MichelAsselin
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Fingerjack's post conveyed serious enthusiasm!!!!

To complete the post on the Kennedy effect, his idea was to get a spectator to hold a full sheet of newspaper taut to the side, toreador-style. You step back and shoot at the newspaper - a strong shot will slice right through, which really impresses the spectator (and does get the attention of the participant). Nice impromptu demo... and... as you keep adjusting the newspaper for height and tension between the hands, you may steal their watch...

I will not give away Kennedy's routine; maybe another Cafe visitor actually remembers which New York Magic Symposium holds the write-up.
" , ? ; !!! "
- Marcel Marceau, Feb 30, 1945.
kris attard
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I have a book on card throwing which I got a few years back. It's called "WHO WANTS ONE? SAY I." by Tom Osborne (Ray Goulet's Magic Art Book company). It's only 14 pages, and gives concise instructions. I had bought it from Magic books By Post of UK but I did not see it on their recent list, perhaps it's out of print. you might want to ask them, their website is
Click Here
I have always found the Wallaces to be immensely helpful. I did not use it too much because I had taught myself to throw cards as a kid. My source of inspiration at the time was Bill Bixby in the TV series The Magician, and then I found a small section on Henry Hay's CYCLOPEDIA OF MAGIC, Dover Publications. Hope this helps.

--------------------------------------
Smile Smile
"ouch... kris, you're supposed to take the cards out of the case BEFORE you throw them, idiot!"
thimblerig
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Fingerjack-
Very nice comprehensive post. Probably learned more about the subject and sources from your message than is gathered in any one place elsewhere. Thank you!
tr
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NLewis
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Ricky Jay's book is an excellent source, so I will have to disagree with some members here. Half of it is written as a joke (one of the great satires in the history of writing), but I still believe it is the resource on card throwing. If you're looking for a modern twist, I would also suggest Rick Smith Jr.'s DVD "The Art of Card Throwing". In addition, there is a Youtube series called "Card Throwing: An Instructional Series", which is in 10 parts. It's another resource that covers everything from basic skills to advanced throwing.

Cheers,

Nicholas Lewis
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