The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Nothing up my sleeve... » » Gaffs vs. Knucklebusting (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page [Previous]  1~2~3 [Next]
Dan LeFay
View Profile
Inner circle
Holland
1371 Posts

Profile of Dan LeFay
Cool, the way this discussion developes.
I am with you guys.

Tommy Wonder's essay on the Three Pillars of Magic explains very well why it is not an "or" but an "and" question.

A routine is more stable if it is built on technique(skill) and special equipment(gaffs) and, most important, psychology.
Take one away and it will be less stable...

Some time ago I received an incredible beautiful set of CSB coins from Todd. After rehearsing for some time I decided to try it out for some magii. Two of these gentlemen were very well known coin-gimmick makers here in Holland. Before I began I mentioned that I just received these coins from Todd, who's reputation is just surfacing here. They were impressed by the routine but a friend of mine told me later something I did not realise at that moment.

After I finished (and switched out and ditched the gaff) these two gentlemen were grabbing for the coins on the table, inspecting them and commenting on how invisible the gimmick must be, because they were not able to open it... Smile

My friend told me this looked hilarously funny...I wish I was aware of this at the time.
As I always tell younger students who ask me about gaffs:
25 % of your time is learning how to do a trick with a gaff. Many people stop here...while they should invest the other 75% of their time to ring in and ditch the gaff!
Use Skill, Gaffs and Psychology all three!!!
"Things need not have happened to be true.
Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths,
that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes,
and forgot."
Neil Gaiman
Daniel Faith
View Profile
Inner circle
Neenah, Wisconsin
1526 Posts

Profile of Daniel Faith
I agree that a magician shouldn't rely on ONLY gaffed coins, however, there is nothing wrong with using gaffed coins or gaffed anything else for that matter.
All that matters is the end result to the spectator. The end always justifies the means!

Smile
Daniel Faith
Mike Powers
View Profile
Inner circle
Midwest
2905 Posts

Profile of Mike Powers
The combination of sleight of hand with gaffs often creates some of the most devastating magic. Check Don England's card stuff and Dave Neighbors' coin stuff for some excellent examples.

Effect, effect, effect... What does your audience experience? Isn't that what it's all about?

Mike
Dave Egleston
View Profile
Special user
Ceres, Ca
632 Posts

Profile of Dave Egleston
One of the most "Knock your eyes out" vanish I have ever seen uses a gaffed coin - I hate to even let it out - The first vanish from Geoff Latta's "From The Elven Hoard"
It can be found in SPECTACLE also an oft overlooked book

Dave
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27157 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
I have to admit some personal confusion about this topic. Having constructed and published a version of the Ramsay trick that uses no stack, I may have some perspective on the matter.

Let's consider some options;

First, nothing but the stated props as is. This amounts to some sort of clever juggling and may produce results which seem more self involved than audience involved. I wrote 'may'.

Second, whatever looks magical to the audience. By this I leave no limits on method. Using insects that look like coins is allowed. Same for nanobots and hypnosis.

Third, some compromise set for practical presentation to the audience and confidence in the work appearing magical.

I go with the middle way. The bugs are uncertain, the nanobots on strike (today) and I have never been good at juggling Smile

-Jon
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Sneakers
View Profile
Regular user
Melbourne, Australia
106 Posts

Profile of Sneakers
Quote:
On 2002-12-17 19:50, Reed McClintock wrote:
Pete that is Funny. Smile
I have a friend name Ray ( I know its hard to believe that I have a friend) anyway he has a very funny bit he will walk into a magic shop and pull out a coin and go to the person behind the counter and do a retention pass leaving the coin in his hand and say " hey I just bought this vanishing coin and it doesn't seem to work right. lol this is just a funny thing to me. I do it now when I walk into a new magic shop. It gets the strangest looks. Smile


Hey Reed,

That *is* funny... you know the correct response from the person behind the counter should be "What coin...? I don't see anything...?!" Smile

Cheers!
Larry Davidson
View Profile
Inner circle
Potomac, MD
5267 Posts

Profile of Larry Davidson
Quote:
On 2002-12-18 11:10, Dave Egleston wrote:
One of the most "Knock your eyes out" vanish I have ever seen uses a gaffed coin - I hate to even let it out - The first vanish from Geoff Latta's "From The Elven Hoard"
It can be found in SPECTACLE also an oft overlooked book

Dave


And one of the most magical coin vanishes I've ever seen uses sleight of hand - - Rubenstein's ROPS move. I use it all the time. I'm not generally advocating sleight of hand over gimmicks, I'm just advocating use of this particular move.
Michael Rubinstein
View Profile
V.I.P.
4148 Posts

Profile of Michael Rubinstein
Hey Larry, glad to hear you're using my favorite move. Not too many people have taken the time to learn it well, and those who have (Chris Korn comes to mind) have had much success.

That being said, my feeling is that with gaffs you have to have the ability to get it into the routine, and get it out. Without good sleight of hand, you're opening yourself up to potential exposure. I'm not really a gaff kinda guy, but there's no doubt that gaffs give you the ability to perform a more magical effect.

Take U3Fly, for example. Sleight of hand versions allow you to perform the effect, but the gaff (which I do not have, but appreciate)allows you to freely show your hands in a way that you just can't do without it. It fits in with my philosophy to SIMPLIFY, SIMPLIFY!

For those of you who saw my routine on one of my DVD's called "Voodoo Revelation", you can see that to perform it there is a heck of a lot of work. If you use an expanded shell, you eliminate so many moves it becomes a joy to perform (and it looks better too!). I actually marketed the routine yrs ago with a shell. Eliminating moves makes your magic more magical.

So to sum up, sleight of hand comes first. Then, see how the gaff fits into the routine - does it make it better, or not? Can you finish cleaner with the use of a gaff, or without? Is there less work, or not? Once these questions are answered, you can decide if you want to use a gaff in your routine or not.

BTW, Hi Jon, I don't feel that an extra coin is the same as a gaff. In many cases (U3Fly, for example), the gaff eliminates the use of an extra coin.

Dan, I loved your story about the female spectator. Its the real reason why we all do coin magic!

Curtis, I am a fan of your stuff. I was wondering if you also attempt your same routines with and without the c/s coin, and if you eliminate the heavier handling or just use it in different circumstances.

Reed, wassup? Looking forward to your pac.
Happy Holidays to all, Michael Rubinstein
AT LAST - a NEW fun coins across!! MIGRATE is filled with laughs, magic, cool moves, lasts over 3 minutes, uses props, comes in a Poker Chip version or special Deluxe version with coins, and is about...BEARS! AT DEALERS EVERYWHERE!
https://youtu.be/hzf-Trbs4Ts

https://youtu.be/gGjMtW1DLjA

ALSO...available at dealers EVERYWHERE - RUBINSTEIN COIN MAGIC- The biggest book on coin magic since Bobo's Modern Coin Magic, and the most important since David Roth's Expert Coin Magic! Hardbound, 500 pages, 20 chapters of state of the art coin magic illustrated with 930 crisp photos! A contribution chapter from over 20 of the world's top coin magicians! This will be the book against which all future books on coin magic will be measured! Already called a Modern Classic!!
I HAVE A LIMITED AMOUNT OF COPIES AVAILABLE TO BE SIGNED, AND COME WITH A SPECIAL FREE GIFT! If interested, shoot me an email at rubinsteindvm@aol.com I also have some limited supplies of coins and props used in the book, let me know if you want a pricelist.
Larry Davidson
View Profile
Inner circle
Potomac, MD
5267 Posts

Profile of Larry Davidson
Michael, your ROPS move is killer. I performed it for Scotty York shortly after it appeared in your video and his head **** near exploded. It's like trick photography without the photography.

My view is that sleight of hand doesn't come first, and neither do gimmicks. Effect comes first, and I'll use whatever's necessary for the best effect. I perform a coins across to spectator's hand using both sleight of hand and a shell (I've tried vanishing the last coin through various moves, but have found nothing better than your ROPS move in the context of that trick), and I can tell you that at least for me, there's no coin effect I perform that gets a better reaction from laymen. If I could perform this effect using nothing but sleight of hand and that resulted in the best reaction, that's how I'd do it. Or if my use of nothing but gimmicks in this effect got the best reaction, that's the path I'd take. But the combination of both is what's best for me for this particular effect. In my view, what you use and how you use it depends on the effect. In any event, thanks so much for not keeping the ROPS move to yourself, and for sharing so much other great magic! Regards, Larry Davidson.
Dave Egleston
View Profile
Special user
Ceres, Ca
632 Posts

Profile of Dave Egleston
And one of the most magical coin vanishes I've ever seen uses sleight of hand - - Rubenstein's ROPS move.

Larry D:
Could you reference this move - I'm embarrased to say I don't have much from Mr Rubinstein
Thanks,
Dave
Dan Watkins
View Profile
Inner circle
PA
3028 Posts

Profile of Dan Watkins
Dave,

I think Mike teaches that move on every series he has out.

It is on his Philly lecture video.
It is on the Encyclopedia of Coins Sleights
It is on the Knockout Coin Magic series as well.

It's one of those moves that Mike showcases, and rightfully so. It is a very beautiful steal.
Click to visit:
Image
Thomas Wayne
View Profile
Inner circle
Alaska
2240 Posts

Profile of Thomas Wayne
Quote:
On 2002-12-17 14:13, fstarsinic wrote:
I vote for leaving gaffs in the drawer.[...]

[...]
I think my favorite vanish of all is the third vanish of a silver dollar
in Carney's Cylinder and Coins. It's easy to do but requires
a lot of timing and misdirection. It's not completely clean on one hand,
but on the other hand, it is extremely deceptive and surprising.

[...]


Funny that you should promote a premise that I COMPLETELY disagree with, and then use my favorite coin routine as an example. Of course, by now you've realized that your version of Ramsay's Cylinder & Coins is NOT as gaffless as you thought. In fact, the only version I'm familiar with that uses NO gaffs is Wesley James', and his has not yet been published (though I have a copy of the rough manuscript).

I've studied every version of Ramsay's C&C I could get my hands on, from my original Farelli manuscript (1948) to John Carney's version in "Carneycopia". I can comfortably perform most of the original Ramsay sleights and ALL of the Carney moves. The vanish of the third coin In Carney's version is fun because it's clever and bold and therefore feels so powerful when you pull it off cleanly.

That said, the C&C handling that I currently use is Bob Kohler's unpublished three-coin version, modified somewhat for my personal taste. The second coin requires some holding out, but it's clean and very motivated. However, if you want to see "extremely deceptive and surprising", you should see the first and third coins go. Immediately following each vanish, BOTH hands are very openly shown empty. Bob's been astonishing magicians and laymen alike with this version and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

So you go ahead and keep those gaffs "in the drawer", Frank... personally, I prefer stuff that looks like REAL magic.

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
TheAmbitiousCard
View Profile
Eternal Order
Northern California
13414 Posts

Profile of TheAmbitiousCard
My original post about "keeping gaffs in the drawer" is a little overstated. I should have thought a bit more carefully about what I meant before posting it.

My original thought was based on the lack of posting here about misdirection techniques and methods.

So I started thinking...
Is it because it is an unpopular subject.
Is it because people think.. "forget the misdirection worries, just give me a
#$%* flipper. nobody will notice that."
Is it because misdirection is easy to learn and Frank (me) is just not catching on and I should have mastered all this way back with 2-in-the hand, one-in-the pocket.

Anyway, that was the motivation for the post and perhaps it should have been re-named...

"Why does misdirection not get discussed here when it is so critical to the success of magic"

Here might be a good example:
Take someone that does not perform a 3Fly routine. If a student of yours were to persue this, what would you recommend:
A. An extra coin
B. U3F type routine

I would think that I would want any student of magic to start off with A.

I think this is what I'm getting at.

and Thomas, as always,
Quote:
So you go ahead and keep those gaffs "in the drawer", Frank... personally, I prefer stuff that looks like REAL magic.

thanks for your friendly remarks!
www.theambitiouscard.com Hand Crafted Magic
Trophy Husband, Father of the Year Candidate,
Chippendale's Dancer applicant, Unofficial World Record Holder.
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27157 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
Funny you should choose 3fly as your working example.

I designed the second coin transit to help me get my misdirection skills down. My way depends on that misdirection. Plain and simple. A fan of two coins in the LH and one coin at the base of the RH fingers with RH held flat open at waist height. Though talking nothing moves except my head and eyes.

Likewise in the copper/silver transposition the change of the coin in my hand is effected by simply turning over the gimick in my LH. While the hand is closed. With no aparent motion other than a slow wrist turn and reverse.

In both cases, it was the effect as percieved by the audience that suggested the methods employed. If folks could confuse a moth with a coin, or tiny machines could move coins around for me I would give these resources due consideration when working to impliment an effect.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Thomas Wayne
View Profile
Inner circle
Alaska
2240 Posts

Profile of Thomas Wayne
Quote:
On 2002-12-19 02:11, fstarsinic wrote:
[...]
and Thomas, as always,
[...]
thanks for your friendly remarks!


Well Frank, as always, you're welcome!

Regards,
Thomas Wayne

(PS. By the way - FYI - gaffs and misdirection are NOT mutually exclusive...)
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
Bob Kohler
View Profile
Special user
704 Posts

Profile of Bob Kohler
Many years ago I saw David Williamson do an incredible late night lecture at a convention. His theme was "Kill the Laymen."

He used a lot of words like "murder, destroy, rip out their eyes"...you get the point.

I thought about this lecture a great deal. David is correct. We are at war with the laymen. Sure they may be paying us big bucks or maybe we're partying in a bar, but the bottom line is we are magicians, not comedians and we are expected to bewilder and amaze our audiences.

The tough part is to entertain them and make them like us while we destroy their tiny minds (JOKE).

I believe just as in any war you take every weapon you have at your disposal. Every weapon you don't have in your arsenal makes you weaker. So gaffs can be great. But I believe they are more difficult to use than ordinary objects.

Using gaffs correctly requires precision planning. Your coreography, switches, steals, and dumps must be exact. Your handling of the gaff or gaffs must be casual. Your confidence level needs to be extremely high. If you are afraid they will discover the gaff, they will. If you don't worry about it, they won't care.

John Ramsay's Cylinder & Coins is the perfect example for me. Granted the stack and extra cork are gaffs. But let's concentrate on the vanish and reproduction sequences.

I've witnessed handlings from almost every coin worker I know. Tim Conover taught the routine to me many years ago. In my humble estimation, he is the living master of the routine. Tim can do the original Ramsay handling with all of the moves and feints with a precision and clarity that would make John proud. But he's also developed other handlings that use gaffs in extremely clever ways that make the routine more magical. Ramsay's original was probably developed to take top magicians to the cleaners. So do you need all of the feints in the original when performing for laymen...I don't think so.

Other stand out routines are certainly John Carney's (watch out for his handling of Coins in the Hat next year...whew!) and Mike Gallo's. Mike has two great routines. One is called "Covering Ramsay" and can be found in his one man issue of Richard's Almanac. Really great. Mike's other idea is sick...he uses a toilet paper tube as the cylinder and a piece of TP as the cork.

I think everyone should learn Ramsay's Cylinder and Coins. The learning process will teach you more about magic than you can imagine. Vanishing four silver dollars one at a time, holding them all in your hand and telling the audience your not is a manly trick. It took me one year to learn.
You have to master choreography, misdirection, timing and patter. What fun!

After you've mastered the "non-gaff" version, work on applying gaffs. Yes, it's different. There is certainly a different feel to performing the routine. But the clean shows can elevate the experience for the audience.

So here's some good news for you. I'm pretty sure that John Carney is releasing his handling on DVD. Next year I will release a DVD on the Cylinder & Coins that will include Tim Conover performing both the original and his current masterpiece. It will also have the routine that Michael Forbes and I have developed and one last routine that I have never shown magicians that for me is the most powerful of all.

Thomas Wayne and I have developed a beautiful set of props for the routine that makes the routine totally practical. More on that later.
www.bobkohlermagic.com

Home of the BK Pro Line
TheAmbitiousCard
View Profile
Eternal Order
Northern California
13414 Posts

Profile of TheAmbitiousCard
Bob, this is wonderful news about the DVDs.
I saw someone do the C&C routine at the most recent A-1 convention and was stunned. I had never seen it before. To this day I'm not sure who it was.

I learned the routine from Carneycopia and was having a difficult time with it.

Then I saw Carney's Up Close and Far Away (performance only) video and nearly fell out of my chair (Ok, it was the sofa).

I didn't realize from the book how smooth and disarming the slights could be (and needed to be).

I await those DVD's with great anticipation!

So who was that masked man performing C&C?
www.theambitiouscard.com Hand Crafted Magic
Trophy Husband, Father of the Year Candidate,
Chippendale's Dancer applicant, Unofficial World Record Holder.
Dan Watkins
View Profile
Inner circle
PA
3028 Posts

Profile of Dan Watkins
Bob,

I am overjoyed that you are posting more frequently here in the forums. Your posts are highlights of my reading here.

Your Cylinder and Coins DVD will be a MUST HAVE for me.

I have a question I would love to read your thoughts on. The ungaffed C&C routines typically require soft worn coins, as does 3 fly routines for that matter. Your U3F eliminates the need for old worn coins, and I cannot remember if your gaffed C&C handling eliminated the soft coin need as well. What are your thoughts on using uncirculated beautiful coins as props versus soft coins which tend to be old worn much less beautiful (but are easier to manipulate).

Is it a big deal? Do you have a preference when given a choice?

Dan
Click to visit:
Image
RiserMagic
View Profile
Veteran user
361 Posts

Profile of RiserMagic
Dan;
What are your preferences on coins? For general use I prefer crisp new and sharp milled edges; but like the faces artificially "softened". It will be interesting to see what Bob says.
Jim
Dan Watkins
View Profile
Inner circle
PA
3028 Posts

Profile of Dan Watkins
Jim,

I like the shiny pretty stuff, but I hate the limitations of them when stacked or sliding.

Soft coins when sliding face against face make no noise. Soft coins when face to face have more surface area contact so they also tend to stack and stick together easier for manipulating coins stacked together.

What do I do? I tend to avoid routines that NEED soft coins because I don't like using them purely for aesthetic reasons. Coin magic usually is very close to a spectator. I like to be able to use classy beautiful props that the spectator admires. I have had comments on how beautiful the coins are. I like that.

I have heard the statement that you don't need soft coins because the environment can be soft. Meaning there is ambient noise that typically covers coins talking. That is true to some circumstances but I have done magic in very quiet environments and I like to be able to perform what I want regardless of background cover noise.

So when Bob and others take routines that typically NEED soft coins and change them (by handling or gaff usage) so they can be done even better with the nice lookin' coins it really makes my day.

Jim how do your artifically "softened" coins look? Can you put a close up of an artifically softed Morgan Dollar on your website?
Click to visit:
Image
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Nothing up my sleeve... » » Gaffs vs. Knucklebusting (1 Likes)
 Go to page [Previous]  1~2~3 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2021 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.27 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL