(Close Window)
Topic: What is the best place to learn the shell game?
Message: Posted by: Bradley Morgan (May 28, 2004 04:10PM)
You have a few places to learn the shell game like Bob sheets, Absolutely Nuts Three Shell Game Video,
Sal Piacente: Three Shell Game,
Bob kohler Three shell game

What would be better to get and what do you learn the most with.


Bradley Morgan
Message: Posted by: Whit Haydn (May 28, 2004 05:13PM)
They all three compliment each other very well. You should get all of them. If you have to choose, start with either Piacente or Kohler and then add the advanced material from Sheets.

Kohler has a great, simple commercial routine that uses very little sleight-of-hand. Piacente teaches a little more stuff.

The Sheets material is necessary to bring it all home. With that, you can never be beaten.

I also suggest the video by Phil Cass on the shell game. It is a very different approach from those above, and could give you some original ideas on how to approach your presentation.

Eventually, the School for Scoundrels will release our dvd and book on the shell game. It will be pretty complete as a reference on everything from making the shells, the history, psychology and moves of the shell game.
Message: Posted by: Bradley Morgan (May 28, 2004 05:27PM)
Thanks you so much, I can't wait to see it.

Best Wishes Always,
Bradley Morgan
Message: Posted by: Riley (May 29, 2004 09:03AM)
On 2004-05-28 18:13, whithaydn wrote:

...Eventually, the School for Scoundrels will release our dvd and book on the shell game. It will be pretty complete as a reference on everything from making the shells, the history, psychology and moves of the shell game...

I really look forward to this. Whit, could you just debit my account and send it when ready??

BTW, the "Fast and Loose" CD is excellent, and although I've been performing this for around twenty years, I realised I'm still learning. May the S4S last for 1000 years, or maybe longer :)

Message: Posted by: Sociomagi (May 30, 2004 01:20AM)
I like Whit's work...

Thanks Whit.

Peter Goode
Message: Posted by: Dave V (May 30, 2004 03:10AM)
I too agree with Whit (no surprise there)

I have all the videos except for Piacente (I didn't know about it or I'd have it too) and have learned bits from each of them.

I'm starting with Kohler's "Golden Shells" routine with a few additions of Bob Sheets' "move" to make a gambling routine even more "magical." Phil Cass was fun to watch, and the misdirection for the finale was awesome but I doubt I'll ever have what it takes to effectively pull off what he does.
Message: Posted by: kihei kid (May 30, 2004 05:24AM)
On 2004-05-28 18:13, whithaydn wrote:
Eventually, the School for Scoundrels will release our dvd and book on the shell game. It will be pretty complete as a reference on everything from making the shells, the history, psychology and moves of the shell game.
Looking foward to it.
Message: Posted by: bishthemagish (May 30, 2004 02:06PM)
The School for Scoundrels is a great place with some great props. I have a thimble rig and a set of copper shells from the School for Scoundrels and they are outstanding.

I am also interested in the book and DVD that is coming out. And I have been a into the shellgame for more than 20 years. And it has been a trademark effect for me for a long time. And I have video of it at my web site below.

I look forward to the DVD and book about the shells from the School for Scoundrels.
Message: Posted by: TheAmbitiousCard (May 31, 2004 12:18AM)
Whit is correct.

I have Kohler's video, I'm trying to acquire Piacente's DVD after seeing it at the magic store.
I also have the Patrick Page video which I also like.
I also have the Sheets video.

I've picked up bits from all of them.
Andrew Pinard also has a shell routine that has extra stuff on it that the others do not. But it is not commercially available, that I know of.

Every one I have and I'm glad I do.

Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (May 31, 2004 02:40AM)
The Camirand Academy of Magic has a very good routine for $12.50 called SUPERSHELLS BOOK by Gary Ouellet. This is an excellent routine. Of course it is in book form only, so if you need a video, you are out of luck.

Message: Posted by: ullig (May 31, 2004 03:07AM)
The Supershells routine is also on the DVD "The Very Best Of Gary Ouellet Vol. 3". You get all the shell moves you need for this routine and much much more from this DVD(Cards, Coins ...). Great close-up material.

Message: Posted by: James Harrison (May 31, 2004 09:56AM)
I learned the shell game from Bob Sheets video.

I've been told to get Kohler's tape, but I've played with Sheets routine for a while now and sorta have my own routine with it.

Mind you, I've gotten tips from Bob himself on how to make the routine work better than how I was doing it.

I've played it in restaurants now for about 3 months, and I never leave home without it.

I would highly recomennd watching Glenn Bishop's routine. I loved watching it. In fact, if Glenn doesn't mind putting the link to it, I'd like to watch it again.

Glenn has some great sutilties (sp?) and the ending is very magicial.

Glenn, I would go so far as to say that you should even put something out on your routine, it really is that good.

Message: Posted by: bishthemagish (May 31, 2004 12:43PM)
Thank you very much for your kind words James Harrison about my shellgame routine.

It will be coming out on a DVD for mail order from my web site the first week of August. The reason I had to wait to put it out is because I sent away for a DVD copier. When I released my Cardworks DVD I had a hard time keeping up with the demand.

I also wanted to video the shellgame routine with the new copper shells that I got from the School for Scoundrels.

The are a fine set and I feel dress the effect up a lot on the video/DVD.

But both DVD's will be available for mail order the first week of August... Thank you for your interest and your kind words.
Message: Posted by: James Harrison (May 31, 2004 01:12PM)

I'll be saving my pennies for that dvd on the 3 shell game.
Message: Posted by: Jim Wilder (May 31, 2004 08:29PM)
I have several vids on the shell game, but more often I tend to refer back to Phil Cass' video when I am looking to somehow spark my routine from time to time. Bob Kohler has some of the better misdirection work, while Bob Sheets also uses some advanced moves that can fool magicians. But I find more times than not, lay people are just as easily taken by the basic moves with the more direct psychology that can be learned from Phil Cass.
But, I am very eager to see the School For Scoundrels dvd. Also, I use shells from the Scoundrel Store that are tremendously smooth to work with.
Message: Posted by: Kjellstrom (Jun 1, 2004 01:21AM)
THREE SHELL GAME DVD by Sal Piacente is very interesting for students.
You can read more about the DVD here:
Message: Posted by: Dave V (Jun 1, 2004 12:06PM)
I looked all over that site and found nothing on shells.

Although other dealers carry it, here's a link on Penguin's site that includes a video clip:

Message: Posted by: Neil (Jun 14, 2004 04:50PM)
I found the Piacente video a bit dissapointing. Firstly I had to get over the very American street presentation which has him warning you that only your knowledge stands between you and getting ripped off. Well maybe but in truth I've never seen the game being played for real anyway...so I feel quite safe!

Not that all that is important. The actual moves are a bit basic. Everytime he wants to prove a shell empty he pushes it forward. Everytime he wants to load it it gets pulled back. I could spot where it was gonna be everytime. Maybe my shell routine is better than I thought or maybe his isn't all that hot - at least the vid has boosted my confidence in what I do but that's not what I pay for!

I've not seen another shell video so I can't compare but I've got a lot more out of the standard pamphlets for the street moves and Supershells for a magic routine.

Are the other vids mentioned more subtle and skillful?
Message: Posted by: TheAmbitiousCard (Jun 14, 2004 05:24PM)
The fake move on the Piacente video was good. There's pretty good psychology in the moves, I think.

Yes, it's a little "hitman-happy" in the presentation but care.

Kohler's routine is good. His fake move I like even better and it's more simple to do. I think this is the one I like the best. The structure of the moves. Which one comes after which one and why.

The Sheet's move I was not all that thrilled with. It's ok but of all the video's I've gotten the least out of it, I think.

But... in a few more viewings, I could change my mind. They all have something to offer. Some of the offerings take a while to notice.

I suggest getting them all, figuring out your own routine and then selling/trading the DVDs to others.
It's not like you need to keep refering back to them after a while. So get them all.

Lucky for me, I was playing Chinese Checkers with my son and the green balls look exactly like "The Perfect Pea". Just a wee bit bigger but you would never know. So I can use one of those as the hard pea if I so desire.

Message: Posted by: Neil (Jun 15, 2004 03:44AM)
What do you mean by "fake move" exactly? Are you talking about a sucker steal/load or an aquitment?

I suppose if you assume that the specs will never guess the secret then the methods on the vid are fine but I don't think you can assume that. When designing my own routine I've been conscious to ensure that the pea is not consistently found under the last shell I pull back and furthermore that my mixing doesn't merely consist of the shells in a row being pushed forward (the being pea s_____), mixed about and then pulled back. I'm thinking that you should at least sometimes give implied reasons why the l___ movement is taking place such as creating diagonal row or triangle pattern.

This is probably too detailed for this forum. I'll start a thread in Secret Sessions.
Message: Posted by: magicmonkeyphoto (Jun 15, 2004 05:02AM)
I know a few people that have taken the School for Scoundrels course, and they all loved it. I am sure the DVD they put out will be a great way to go.

Message: Posted by: Kjellstrom (Jun 15, 2004 08:24AM)
I use the [b]Magnetic Street Shells[/b] and you can do miracle magic with these special shells.
I give them 10 out of 10.
Message: Posted by: bishthemagish (Jun 15, 2004 10:15AM)
I don't like to use Magnetic Shells or magnuts in the shellgame. The reason is I like the freedom that it can be done with bottle caps sea shells or small caps or cups.

I like a soft peas (sponge) and I have done the routine without a close up mat I like to use a claose up mat becaue it becomes a performing stage.
Message: Posted by: Kjellstrom (Jun 15, 2004 03:32PM)
The unfair advantage with Magnetic Street Shells is very powerful.
Message: Posted by: bishthemagish (Jun 15, 2004 04:06PM)
And that is what makes magic so interesting. We all have our own ways of doing things. I have used a hard pea but I like a sponge pea...

I also like doing things on a close up mat.

But others have their own way and that is what makes magic so interesting... Magicians are different!
Message: Posted by: TheAmbitiousCard (Jun 15, 2004 04:21PM)
On 2004-06-15 04:44, Neil wrote:
What do you mean by "fake move" exactly? Are you talking about a sucker steal/load or an aquitment?

I've been conscious to ensure that the pea is not consistently found under the last shell I pull back .

Good thinking. I've thought about this too.
When I was watching the videos, this is exactly what I was looking for and I was right more often than not. That is bad design.

Yes, I meant sucker moves and aquitements.

Another thing about the La Maggiore Shells is that because they are larger, there is more room inside. This does 2 things:
Prevents the pea from accidently rubbing an edge and having the shell roll unexpectedly after you let it go. YIKES!

Allows you to possibly push the shell forward just a tad avec pea.

I have not played with that one but it could, if successful, throw off someone that knows a bit.

Message: Posted by: Neil (Jun 16, 2004 04:05AM)
I know what you mean about the shell rolling off the pea.

Has anyone tried the Karl Norman peas? It sounds like they are smooth rubber coated outside but soft sponge inside.

A subtle way of fooling the spec I've been using is to steal the pea into a back-clip and gesture with supposedly empty hands. When they select a shell you show it empty and place away from the others loading the pea in the process, then they select one of the remaining shells and this too is shown empty. With the hands shown undoubtedly empty back and front with spread fingers (without actually referring to it) it is turned back over at fingertips to remove any chance of any load being done and put next to the other "empty" shell. The pea is then loaded into this shell using casual sideslide load as you "dismiss" these two shells to one side. The spec will be pretty sure the pea is in the remaining shell but furthermore they will be CERTAIN the pea isn't in the last shell shown, which is where it is!
Message: Posted by: Dave V (Jun 16, 2004 01:08PM)
I like it! I've done something similar, but not from the back clip. This way, they see the pea go under one of the two, I "do the move" and keep the pea (front)clipped until I reach for the "out of play" shell that hasn't been touched by anyone since the sequence began. It's almost "too perfect" for a gambling move, but works well in a magic demo.

I'll try your back clip idea tonight.
Message: Posted by: bishthemagish (Jun 16, 2004 04:18PM)
On 2004-06-15 16:32, Kjellstrom wrote:
The unfair advantage with Magnetic Street Shells is very powerful.

After thinging about the magnetic pea for a while - I would think that it would be a real fooler if a magician was booked to do an event and did the sellgame several times during a day booking.

Then the magician could use several different methods. Using several different kinds of peas and grips each time the magician performs it.

I think that that would fool the audience and continue to fool them by using different methods...
Message: Posted by: Kjellstrom (Jun 18, 2004 10:56AM)
Yes I mix many standard moves plus the unfair techniques with the magnetic shells.
I love to use these shells, I even fool myself :)
If yo have a chance to test them, do it and you will buy them directly.