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Ignore me...
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Thank you for pointing out the current ad, Geemack.

However, I must point that that, in looking at the label, the return address is, in deed, Tom Frank at ISM, in Seattle, WA.

Mad Jake, that is pretty humorous. If GM told you they would be taking action to fix things, and then dropped out of correspondence, though, that would be quite a difference, no? In any case, I appreciate your take on things... although, you are wrong in your assumptions.

It is possible that the ads Tom Frank puts on eBay have changed. This set, according the postmark, was shipped December 13, 2005. He kept the ad copy the same on the next few sets, when I decided to save the webpage of my own sale, and apparently had no problem getting in touch with the purchasers of the sets he continued to sell.

Unfortunately, he WAS able to settle details with the others, while my own emails were ignored. He even had time to give those folks feedback, I seem to recall.

I'm sorry, Bill, but this went on for a few months, with no response back to me (but business as normal, as far as I could tell by those who won auctions after mine). If it had been a matter of a few days, that would have been understandable. However, I finally gave up at the end of February.

However... I always figure that a client has 100 people standing behind him. If I do something which upsets a client, or drop the ball, I usually hustle to set things right. In this case, it didn't happen. Everyone can read our individual stories and views of the facts here, and say, it was right of Mad Jake to be mocking of this fool who expected a followup.

It may seem that I am being unfair... but honestly, I wasn't expecting something for nothing. I sent my payment. I got what wasn't as advertised. I didn't report the misdescribed item to eBay, thinking that he'd follow through.

And then nothing.

Still, Jake, thank you for the comments. I must admit that I was amused at your mocking my story, even though I stuck to the facts of the matter. As you have a business relationship with the person in question, I accept that you would have to insult to try to remove any credibility from my comments.

Cheers!
Bill Palmer
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I didn't realize it had been that long. However, as you can see from my two posts above, the variation in the size of "regulation" tennis balls is great enough that it would allow some to fit while others wouldn't. As I pointed out, even the pet balls that are sold as tennis balls do fit within the ITF spec.

If you want three tennis balls that will fit your Phoenix cups, I will send them to you at no charge. I have literally THOUSANDS of different kinds of load balls that will fit into almost any kind of cup imaginable, from the smallest of the Reilly cups to the van Dokkum Monster Cups. I can certainly spare three of the "drugstore" tennis balls.

I may be picking nits here, but the ad copy says that the cups will take "A" tennis ball, not the cups will take "ALL" tennis balls.

I'll PM you an alternative as well.
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AGMagic
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Ignore me,

My post was intended for Quickhands, but it is ok that you took it as a reply to your post. I am suprised that Tom has not answered your E-Mails. Like Jake, I have known Tom to be honest and giving to the magic community. I don't know what has been going on in Tom's life recently, but I would try contacting him again if you want this resolved. You might have caught him at a bad time, or he might just have forgotten. It happens to the best of us.

Good Luck!

Tim
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François
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I took a picture of my beloved Phoenix cups set with...a tennis ball in:
Could it be a good answer to the first question?

Image


Thank Tom for those cups, I love them!!!
Bill Palmer
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François:

As you can see from some of my previous answers, there is a great amount of leeway in the dimensions of regulation tennis balls. The Phoenix cups will take a tennis ball that is near the lower end of the dimensions, but not at the upper end of the dimensions. There is almost 1/8 inch variation or a 1/16 inch difference from the mean.

The same is true of Paul Fox cups and lacrosse balls. The Paul Fox cups will take a lacrosse ball that is near the lower end of the regulation dimensions, but not at the upper end. In the case of lacrosse balls, there is a .1 inch variation or a .05 inch difference from the mean.
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François
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To be totally honest Bill, you are right, I tried with 3 differents type of tennis ball, two types were a bit to strong in diameter and the cup was not exactly flat on the table.
The last type (the cheaper one, baught in a gas station, about 2€ for 6 balls) was okay.
It was just to say that Tom's work is great work!! Those cups are really good.
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I might be completely wrong here, but I was under the impression that some of the sets that Tom put up for sale on eBay weren't quite the same as the sets sold directly through his site. While not necessarily being 'seconds', I thought the sets being sold at a reduced price via eBay were less perfect than the others.

However, if the same chucks were used to spin the cups, it's difficult to see how the interior volume of the cups could possibly change. My guess is that it's down to that weird variability in the size of regulation tennis balls that Bill has mentioned. I have two sets of Phoenix cups and Penn balls fit in them without any trouble - and come out easily too.

Richard
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Bill Palmer
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Some of this may have to do with what is done to the cups after they come off the chucks. If the cups are honed on the inside, that would increase the ID just a bit.

Looking at the ones I have, though, I find that unlikely.
"The Swatter"

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quickhands
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Hi People,

I just wanted to thank everybody for his/her comments, excellent advice and research. Also, I would like to reiterate that I was asking a genuine question rather than voicing a complaint. I do not have lots of experience in magic to know what to expect some times and I was concerned about my cups. Finally, I would like to say that I contacted Tom about my concerns and he was happy to exchange the set for me. These new cups are nicer and he included 3 Penn 2 tennis balls with them. Based on my experience alone, I would say that Tom is not only an honest seller but also a person that tries to satisfy the needs, concerns and expectations of his customers. I would certainly do business with him again, and not be discouraged if the first trial does not go 100% right.

Thanks,

QH.
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Smile Smile Smile Smile Smile
:applause: Smile Smile Smile
:applause: Smile Smile
:applause: Smile
:applause:
"The Swatter"

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Mobius303
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I think you guys are also forgetting thast the inside of all tennis balls are full of air. This means that air pressure will effect/affect the balls in different ways. I have found that certain balls will expand or contract depending on where I am using them and what time of year it is. Temperature will also afect the diameter and pressure of the air inside the balls.
I am surprised you didn't mention any of this.
A ball that wouldn't fit this winter may fit this summer ...at least in my experience that has happened.
Later,
Mobius
Bill Palmer
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While this is true, it doesn't affect the parameters of a "regulation size" tennis ball. All of the tennis balls I had that fit 2 years ago still fit.
"The Swatter"

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My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

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fortasse
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In terms of design, were the Phoenix cups an improvement on the Charlie Miller/Magic Inc. cups and were these latter cups an improvement on the original Ross Bertram cups?

Fortasse
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Fortasse,
first their were the Ross Bertram cups, then the Charlie Miller cups came along from Magic Inc. I remember visiting Magic, Inc. when I was younger, the cups were stacked to the ceiling in the warehouse, 10.00 a set wholesale, LOL what a price. But the Charlie Miller cups, like the Phoenix showed a lot of inconsistant sets, they were mass produced.

The Phoenix cups came along, and due to lack of quality control *not Tom's fault* erractic differences in the cups appeared, specs were missed, cups were spun crooked, jagged mouth beads, the list goes on. Tom spent weeks trying to match sets. But again, this is what happens when you have a company mass produce something for you. This is also evident in all the Magic Maker cups.

The Phoenix II cups by us, were corrected cups based on the feedback by the performers and collectors alike. Concerns of mouth bead, final load capacity and saddle width were all in consideration when we redid the Phoenix cups for Tom. We didn't rush the job and the end result was worth the wait according to Tom and the people who have recieved their sets.

There are numerous cups on the market that in one way or another have used another design for the basis of the particular style, it's not an uncommon practice and it's not unethical either. Sometimes this approach makes a cup better, sometimes it backfires.

I still use my original Phoenix cups, I've grown partial to the dents and dings in them as each is a performance story in itself. Thanks Tom, redoing them was a lot of fun and a challenge.

Jake
For quality Paul Fox Cups spun on Danny Dew's Paul Fox tooling visit us at www.airshipmagic.com
fortasse
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Jake :

Thanks for the explanation. Much appreciated.

Fortasse
Bill Palmer
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Any time you have what amounts to slave labor spinning a product that they do not understand how to use you run the risk of poor production.

I think Tom did the best he could under the circumstances.

However, the Phoenxi II cups are really nice. They feel good, have a large enough saddle that a three ball display is almost automatic, and they take a big load.
"The Swatter"

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My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

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TheAmbitiousCard
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Quote:
On 2006-04-28 21:42, quickhands wrote:
Hi People,
... I would like to say that I contacted Tom about my concerns and he was happy to exchange the set for me. These new cups are nicer and he included 3 Penn 2 tennis balls with them. QH.

Too bad for you.
Tom included 3 Penn #1 tennis balls with my set.
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Mad Jake
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Quote:
On 2006-09-11 22:23, Bill Palmer wrote:
Any time you have what amounts to slave labor spinning a product that they do not understand how to use you run the risk of poor production.

I think Tom did the best he could under the circumstances.



Couldn't agree with you more Bill. Even the Charlie Miller cups reflected an array of differences when Jay had them spun out. Tom matched the best he could and quite frankly <no pun intended> the original Phoenix cups are still great street cup and work horses. The only reason the new generation came about was to fix some of the issues that were constantly brought up.

I'd just like to add also, that the remakes of the Phoenix, Sisti, JES were not because the originals were bad, quite the contrary. The originals were great, but after your release a product hind sight becomes 20/20, so now you have the feedback and input to work with. This helped tremendously and thanks to all that supplied their thoughts and concerns.

Jake
For quality Paul Fox Cups spun on Danny Dew's Paul Fox tooling visit us at www.airshipmagic.com
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