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Topic: Cups manufacturers history and lists of their cups
Message: Posted by: francisngkl (Jan 15, 2011 05:08AM)
Hi, is there some kind of records showing popular cups makers,their history and a list of the cups they made and the specs and photos of those cups? I thought this info would be useful for collectors to decify value and authenticity of the cups they have and help with their decision-making process in terms of ownership.
Message: Posted by: cupsandballsmagic (Jan 15, 2011 05:32AM)
Francis, I think the closest we have to that at the moment is Bill's wonderful museum. You can search for makers, metal types, cup types, finishes etc on the search page.

If you don't already have a password, email bill and he should sort you out pretty quickly but be prepared for a long visit, I literally spent hours in there on my first ever visit!

Message: Posted by: dcjames (Jan 15, 2011 06:42AM)
As usual, Bri is absolutely spot on. Bill's museum is THE source for research on cups & balls and related items. (Wands, loads, working balls, etc.) Beyond the museum, I am not aware of other searchable databases detailing the lineage of cups.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Jan 15, 2011 01:52PM)
I wish I knew the exact history of the cups from just the 1900's to the present. The problem is that many of the manufacturers made cups for many different retailers. So a set of Kanter's cups may have been made by Brema, P&L, Burtini, or any number of private spinners.

I'm working on it!!!

I've picked up a few things over the past several years, though.
Message: Posted by: francisngkl (Jan 15, 2011 02:58PM)
Just a thought, perhaps we can start from current makers and work backwards in time. Presently, We do have very eminent makers like RNT II, Buma, James Riser, Van Dokkum, Brett Sherwood, Five of Hearts, etc. Information about them and their background can be quite complete.
As we move backwards in time, data would inevitably grow less complete...but reseaching them can be an on-going activity with no timeline. It would probably focused on selected prominent makers as a start.
The consolidated information will benefit next generation of collectors and serve on record the evidence of the creativity of these master craftsmen who have provided us with plenty of joy...again it just a thought.

Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Jan 15, 2011 06:12PM)
What do you mean "we"? You seem to be referring to some kind of collective database, but if you don't have the cups and the information, then what do you have?

Here's something to think about. I have a lot of information on my web site, but I haven't listed everything I know. I have no inclination to micromanage the information about the cups and balls. I am working on a book that will have more of what you want to know.

However, I am unwilling to post personal/historical information about any of these makers, because it would be an invasion of their privacy. Also, in the case of at least one of these makers, putting together all of the information I have might be embarrassing to them.

Basically, I have other things on my plate right now that I consider to be far more important.
Message: Posted by: Don (Jan 15, 2011 06:25PM)
Bill, can you give a critique on the ickle pickle chop cup you received from Hocus Pocus recently?

Message: Posted by: francisngkl (Jan 15, 2011 07:52PM)
Bill, your book would be great for novice like me, looking forward to it. Thanks
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Jan 16, 2011 08:13PM)
The Ickle Pickle chop cup is very close in size to the Tim Star goblets. It doesn't have the special system the more recent Tim Star goblets have. It's a rather decent cup, in my opinion, definitely worth the price.

BTW, I believe Tim worked for Ickle Pickle for a while after Rings and Things(I) closed. This would account for the similarity between some of his cups and the ones Ickle Pickle has made. There are other factors as well, though.
Message: Posted by: fortasse (Jan 16, 2011 08:48PM)
Bill :
Is it your impression that there are fewer cups manufacturers today than there were, say, 10 years ago?
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Jan 16, 2011 10:33PM)
That's really hard to say. There are a number who have been around for a long time, like Morrissey, for example. Where part of the confusion comes in is that there are so many cup "makers" who are really cup retailers. For example, Burtini made cups for Davenport's, Harry Stanley, Ken Brooke, National Magic and several others. Morrissey made cups for Magic Masters, Supreme, Magic Inc., and a number of others. Sometimes these were custom made cups. For example you can't get the Laurie Ireland cups through any one other than Magic, Inc., unless they are sold on the used market. AFAIK, I am the only person who has gotten Laurie Ireland cups directly from Morrissey, other than Magic, Inc., and that was with Jay Marshall's permission.

Some have moved to Europe, like Tim Star. And there is a host of European manufacturers that nobody over here knows much about, like Seidl, Schiller, Blackman, Jedinat, etc.

So I think it's about the same.
Message: Posted by: fortasse (Jan 16, 2011 10:37PM)
Interesting. thanks.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Jan 17, 2011 11:03AM)
Then there are guys like myself, who designed three cups and farmed out the work to metal spinners. Don't forget Animal, Owen and Porper.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Jan 17, 2011 01:59PM)
Exactly. I'm not forgetting them at all. There is also Johnson and that Busy bee from Oregon who seems to be out of the cup biz for right now.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Jan 17, 2011 06:55PM)
Message: Posted by: fortasse (Jan 17, 2011 08:10PM)
Did Busby spin his own cups?
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Jan 17, 2011 08:20PM)
I doubt it. I didn't spin mine. Owen doesn't spin theirs, even Porper farms his out.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Jan 17, 2011 10:47PM)
Not many producers of cups actually do their own spinning. The original Rings and Things had a fellow named Iris Anderson who spun for them. Tim Star also worked for them. Jim Riser does all his own work. I believe Johnson does their own CNC work. I know that Willi Seidl, Junior does the work that his father used to do. I have photos of him at work. Auke does his own work as well.

I have been told that Paul Fox had someone who did his spinning work for him. However, Paul did his own design work, and he also did his own engraving. Danny Dew had most of his work done at Perigee.

In the business of cup making, you have to pick and choose what you are going to do.
Message: Posted by: fortasse (Mar 2, 2011 09:46AM)

In terms of CNC-machined cups, are Auke van Dokkum and Johnson's the only cup makers of note right now, or are there others?
By the way, would you be able to tell the difference between a spun cup and a CNC cup if one was put in either hand and your eyes were closed?
Message: Posted by: Andrew Zuber (Mar 2, 2011 09:59AM)
Bill, didn't you say that you heard from Johnson that they aren't going to spin any more copper cups? I thought copper were the only cups they made?
Message: Posted by: cupsandballsmagic (Mar 2, 2011 10:15AM)
They did a run of 25 copper sets, the rest were brass. They remind me a bit of the cups from the "shy spinner" we have yet to identify!
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Mar 2, 2011 11:59AM)
Johnson has never done anything but brass, except for that one run in copper. Copper is not as easy to machine as brass. They might be able to use a good red bronze, though. Pure copper galls very easily.