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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Nothing up my sleeve... » » Best half dollar or silver dollar coin shell » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Cpontz
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Daupin PA
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I've worked with coins for a lot of years, but for some reason, never got into gaffed coins. I'm thinking of working with some coin shells, did a search, but could not find any threads on the best half dollar or silver dollar coin shell. I could always go with the Johnson, but wanted to check to get everyone's opinion on whether it was worth it to get the speciality shells. Also wanted to get opinions on whether to get two sets - one for practice, one for show.

Thanks

Craig Pontz
sethb
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I've used a Johnson expanded ] and never had any problems with it. It's also a very good value for the money, and will be cheaper than a custom-made set. The advantage, to my mind, was that it could be used with any half dollar. However, that's not really much of an advantage nowadays, since you never borrow a half dollar from anyone anymore -- no one carries them around as change.

So going with a standard ] and a cut-down insert is really fine, too. You might get an even better fit with such a set. The only disadvantage is that the ] will only work with that particular insert, and not a regular half dollar. You might also want to look at some custom sets by Jamie Schoolcraft. He does a set of Walking Liberty halves with remilled edges on the ] as well as the insert, and the photos of it are awesome. See here!

I don't see any point in having a practice set and a show set, but your mileage may vary. Good Luck! SETH
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ftlum
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Todd Lassen is also highly recommended. His workmanship is superb.

http://toddlassen.com/

- Frank
Magicmaven
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I have a Dean's Set, by Jamie Schoolcraft. In the set, you have 4 re-edged coins, and a perfectly fitting [, which is also re-edged. Great for all types of palms. I have the walking liberty set, but it comes in some other type of coins too, including soft coins. http://www.coingaffs.com

I don't have any of Todd Lassen's work, but it is supposedly great.
http://www.toddlassen.com

Hope this helps,
Rmax Goodwin
Thomas Wayne
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Quote:
On 2004-12-28 22:22, Magicmaven wrote:
I have a Dean's Set, by Jamie Schoolcraft. In the set, you have 4 re-edged coins, and a perfectly fitting [, which is also re-edged. Great for all types of palms. I have the walking liberty set, but it comes in some other type of coins too, including soft coins. wwww.coingaffs.com

[...]




Jamie, makes the best shell sets I've ever seen (and I've seen just about ALL of 'em).

Best Regards,
Thomas Wayne
MOST magicians: "Here's a quarter, it's gone, you're an idiot, it's back, you're a jerk, show's over." Jerry Seinfeld
el toro
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I have a couple of s***** from Johnson, they are both fine, especially the silver one (walking liberty) but I am probably going to buy Schoolcrafts set with remilled coins and s****.( Deans set) I've heard nothing but rave reviews of this set. I am also buying some gaffs from Todd Lassen, custom work shell + some specialty gaff. I don't think you can go wrong with either of these guys.
It is a cost issue of course. These hand made gaffs are considerably more expensive than the Johnson gaffs.
Cpontz
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Thanks for all the info. Now all I have to do is decide how much money to spend!
curt
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If you can afford the custom set, definitely get Todd Lassen to make them up for you. His work is just beautiful, and he'll make them up in your choice of coin (date, regular or "soft, etc.).

You won't regret it.

......curt
Dr. Faust
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So far, I've only used the Johnson gaffs, and I've never had any trouble with them. They've always worked without a glitch, and the price has always been, by comparison, very reasonable. Since the specialty gaffs are, in some cases, as much as twice the price, I suppose the ultimate question is this: Are they twice as good? That is something I do not know yet. However, since I've heard so many great things about the Lassen and Schoolcraft coins, they are the next on my list of things to buy. I suppose that with so many recommendations, they must be worth it.

Most Thoughtfully,

Dr. Faust
"I have such sights to show you!"
David Neighbors
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I would also have to say Todd makes by far the best gaff coins out there!!! In my 40 years in coin magic I have seen them all and I like Todd's the best! When you think what you are getting in a Shell set i.e. four matched coins and a matching Shell, it's not all that bad! And as Curt said " You won't regret it!"


Best David Neighbors
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Cpontz
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Thanks David and Curt. You have sold me on Todd Lassen, although the Jamie Schoolcraft stuff looked good too.

Craig Pontz
Rob Johnston
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Lassen, Lassen, and then Lassen again.
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Dan Watkins
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Here is the real deal on gaff coins...

If you are working with clad half dollars, a Johnson shell is perfectly fine.

If you want specific coinage (ie specific silver coins and shell) then you want to go with Todd or Jamie.

I have had or have many Johnson, Lassen, and Schoolcraft gaffs, they are all good.
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Thomas Wayne
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I've had a number of Lassen gaffs, and some Johnson as well. They have ALL gone into the "magic drawer" since I discovered Jamie Schoolcraft's work. Head and shoulders above the quality of anything else available.

There are very, very good reasons why the vast majority of the top pros prefer Schoolcraft gaffs.

Oh, and go with http://www.coingaffs.com again.

Regards,
Thomas Wayne
MOST magicians: "Here's a quarter, it's gone, you're an idiot, it's back, you're a jerk, show's over." Jerry Seinfeld
bigchuck
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On 2004-12-30 04:34, Thomas Wayne wrote:
Quote:

There are very, very good reasons why the vast majority of the top pros prefer Schoolcraft gaffs.



I don't know if 'vast majority' is entirely true, I know of quite a few pros who are loyal Lassen fans, I have seen his work and it is superb. Personally, I think 'head and shoulders above the rest' is a bit strong as well -- When I see a Lassen coin gaff, I don't see a gaff at all - I just see the coin it is supposed to be -- I don't see how it is possible to make a coin gaff 'more invisible' than an already invisible coin gaff.

So IMO the Schoolcraft work might, or might not, be 'on par' with the Lassen work, and both are probably better than Johnson's which are still one of the best mass produced coin gaff makers out there.

Just my 2 cents.
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Werner G. Seitz
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It is very hard to judge and I wouldn't dare, but I can compare a single product, the flipper.
Now, I can't put a finger on the precision work and craftmanship, but in case of the flipper, Jamie Schoolcraft came up with a great solution, that isn't the 'standard' one !

The flipper from Todd Lassen is incredibly well done, but he -for obvious reasons- can't 'do'/use the improvement Jamie Schoolcraft has invented..

Also, in case of Todds version the e*****c is VERY difficult to replace, because that thingy has to be doubled up, to put in the groove and that is very hard to do even for a handyman Smile

Doubled up means, one has to make a figure 8 and fold it to enter the groove.

Now, the groove is very thin, actually 0.015 inches and this is done to make it more 'invisible', at the same time Todd has done something clever, and that is to place it off center of the thickness, which is a good thing re 'invisibility'.
Still, the thingy has to be doubled up and stretched to its limits to enter the groove, that is REALLY hard to do!

Schoolcraft's flipper compared to Todd's is very easy to *fix* and replace that thingy and the design of the flipper does, one can place *2 coins* on the table without any gadget or trickery and they stay put.
Now, not that this is needed, but this design ensures at the same time a longer lifetime of that d***d thingy that can break.

Craftmanship is surely equally well, but in case of the flipper Jamie came up with a genial idea that makes his flipper superiour to any other out there...
Learn a few things well.....this life is not long enough to do everything.....

( Words of wisdom from Albert Goshman ...it paid off for him - it might
as well for YOU!!!- My own magic is styled after that motto... Smile )
Larry Davidson
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Woah!!!! This (semi-)pro uses both Lassen and Schoolcraft products because I find both of them to be incredible craftsmen with top-notch products.
Joe Pyne
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I know that alaskan feller is an employee of Bob Kohler, so go figure if he is diverting business away from Todd. And after all the previous posts you have made on this very forum praising Todd's work, it is just too obvious. Lassen is hands down the only gaffer for me. If it ain't EXACTLY the way you want it, he will make it so. I should know, I have been dealing with him for 5 years! Todd worked at the Denver mint for years and has 30 plus years experience as a toolmaker to boot. You just can't argue with experience and Todd is the one who took the ball and ran it right to the top in the coin gaffing trade. God bless you Todd, you have taken our magic to new heighths and given something to coin workers all over the planet. Of course others will come and try to copy your work, but you get ALL the credit for taking coin magic to new levels. Each time I get another order from you I am a little bit more impressed. It takes a little longer nowadays than it did 5 years ago, but it is certainly worth the extra wait. We all know that if you are the best at something, you are certainly always going to be busy. Hail to the one and only chief, Todd Lassen!!
Joe Pyne
Cpontz
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Daupin PA
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I didn't mean to start anything between Lassen and Schoolcraft fans, but it appears that both make exceptional gaffs. I think Dan Watkins may have the best advice. Now I'm rethinking spending the extra money on specialty gaffs until I work with them and see whether I'm going to be using them in my bag of tricks.
waveman
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I heard about the Lassen sets here, I checked them out and I could not believe how much they were going for, I mean come on they're just @#$%^&! coins right?
The Johnson shell are way cheap and fit all the Kennedy halfs you have.

THEN I saw a dollar shell set on Café member Reed McLintocks DVD Coin Ovations (ding ding) and being a big fan of Reed, I thought "hmmm Maybe there is something here."

THEN One of my friends got a peace dollar set and OMG they are LIKE BUTTA and well worth the price you pay.

I always hear product endorsements with extravagant claims, but I'll tell you the set was perfectly matched, evenly worn and as smooth as a babies bum.

Saving up for my own set.
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