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Glenn Watson
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I wonder if we are at the end of the golden age of cups.
[quote]On 2006-09-06 12:14, Bill Palmer wrote:
Fellows (and I use that term in the most non-gender specific sense of the word)

We are living in the Golden Age of Cups and Balls.

Right now, there are more different kinds of cups offered than at any other time in the history of the Art of Magic. The prices are quite reasonable, considering what inflation has done to them.

In the 1960's there were about half a dozen sets of cups manufactured in the US -- a dozen or so, if you consider the variations in metals. There were the P&L cups, the Abbott's cups (some made by P&L), the Kanter's cups (remainders of Brema stock), the PF/DD cups (two basic models), The Al Wheatley Chop Cups, and a few models from Europe.

Now we can purchase cups made by a multitude of manufacturers. These cups come in any size from slightly larger than a thimble to large enough to take a five inch load ball.

On James Riser's sites Mr riser writes ."Due to all of the rip-offs in magic, I am currently tooling up for producing a very high end line of nonmagic items. I will be phasing out magic items over the next few years."
No more Riser Jumbo Cups

No more Riser Traditional Cups

No more Ramsay Style Cups

No more Riser Tall Ultimate Chop Cups

No more Riser Stage and Street Cups

No more Riser Mini-Cups

No more Riser Innocent Mini-Cups

As I have indicated many times, "Because something is available today, does not mean that it will be available forever".

Brett Sherwood has stopped the engraved cups ,at present, due to the high cost of materials and engraving.

Also on the Café Mad Jake wrote"Effective, March 13, 2006 6am EDT, RNT II will stop all metal spinning productions. Outstanding orders have been spun and will be completed and shipped ASAP."

So what do you think is the time of a variety of quality cups coming to an end?
Glenn
This is my 18 th year on being a member of the cafe.
Bill Palmer
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It's hard to say. Jim Riser has basically dropped off the Magic Café. And Jake is pulling out for various reasons. Brett is not through producing cups. He will produce cups once he feels that it can be economically feasible. He will still be producing his brass and copper cups.

But there are other cup makers out there. Gary Animal is re tooling. Keith Bennett still makes nice cups. Roy Kueppers makes nice cups. Auke van Dokkum has his line of cups, all good. And there are still Morrissey, Ickle Pickle, Bazar di Magia, Johnson and a number of custom cup makers.

Dave Lord in Australia is making good cups. Tim Star is still doing some custom work.

So, even though we are losing a couple of the giants, we will still be able to get good cups.

But, let this be a lesson to everyone who said "I think I'll wait just one more month...."
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
GeorgeG
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No more Riser Traditional Cups
No more Ramsay Style Cups
No more Riser Tall Ultimate Chop Cups
No more Riser Mini-Cups
etc.


Glad I jumped in and bought when they first came out, including prototypes on some of these cups...never proscrastinate on the good stuff.
lint
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I mentioned the loss of these three gentleman's (various) cups in another thread. It does seem a shame since I was unable to get all the cups I wanted. But there is always the used market, and hopefully we will all be blessed with new and exciting cups in the future. I also have to constantly remind myself I am not a cup collector Smile

Oh and I am still waiting for someone to put out a two-tone (nickel/copper) traditional set!

-todd
"There's many a slip 'twixt the cup and the lip..." -English Proverb
flimnar
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It seems to me that there is a growing disenchantment by many "Seasoned" (older) professionals regarding the magic community. The issues are sometimes left a bit cryptic, but on the Café, private emails and even on DVD releases, there seems to be--appears to be--a lot of anger. What's up? As one of the newer guys, it certainly makes me sad.

Flimnar
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Dave V
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Do you think the timing coincided with things like Blaine, Ellusionist, Penguin, etc... coming on the scene???

It's great that someone's trying to court a younger clientele, but it seems to me we're starting to see some of the long term effects. Maybe if Jim Riser started putting out collector quality plastic cups for under $20? That should help Smile
No trees were killed in the making of this message, but a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
GeorgeG
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The issue seems to be that a craftsman's work is no longer respected and honored as people begin to steal and copy their versions (mostly cheap, substandard), for a quick and easy sale. Unfortunately, this would not be happening if the magic community didn't buy these rip-offs. What then happens is creativity is killed as brilliant originators back off from the market...so much great magic lost Smile
Pete Biro
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My opinion? Oversaturation of the market. That's why I quit making my two versions(Galli Galli and Johnny Paul) and why Porper and I decided to NOT re-issue the Paul Fox line of cups.

There a limited number of "collectors" and the performers are more interested in the price.

The cheaper knock-off version take care of the curious and amateur market.
STAY TOONED... @ www.pete-biro.com
Bill Palmer
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There is a very specialized market for collectors' cups. Three years ago, Mike Brazill and I did an estimate based on the people we knew who collected cups. We figured that there are about 25 - 50 hard core cup collectors, who will purchase almost anything that has to do with the cups and balls.

The more successful manufacturers of high end cups have played to that market. It's the only part of the market that will never be oversaturated. Because of the cost of setup, collectors cups will always cost more than mill run cups.

However, there will always be people doing the cups and balls. There will always be new magicians on the scene. And there will always be a demand for cups.

My own run of Laurie Ireland Copper Commemorative cups was limited to a run of 50 sets. I sold them in 18 months. I will not reissue them, even though Jay Marshall gave me permission to do so. The market just isn't there.

But there will be some other collectible cups coming out. I can't discuss anything yet, but there will be a very special set coming out in about a year.

There will also be people taking up the slack where Jim and Jake have dropped out. But for now, it looks like the best sources for beginner's cups will be India, China, Argentina and Canada. Also, I should mention that Ickle Pickle has managed to keep costs low.

Until there is some stability in the cost of copper and stainless steel, the cup prices will continue to rise. The manufacturers can't continue to absorb the costs. Copper of a grade that is suitable for making cups has almost tripled in price over the last couple of years. This has been reflected in the price of the cups from Argentina. The cups that used to sell for about $25 are now selling for $74.

So, I repeat Jim Riser's advice. If you see a set you want today, buy it today. It may not be available next week.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
padre rich
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I missed purchasing the last available sterling set from sherwood two days ago. THEY ARE ALL GONE! I hmmmed hawed just an hour too long.
God's grace rocks! It makes a good cups and balls routine look pretty boring in comparison.
lint
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Quote:
On 2007-04-30 15:47, Bill Palmer wrote:
Until there is some stability in the cost of copper and stainless steel, the cup prices will continue to rise. The manufacturers can't continue to absorb the costs. Copper of a grade that is suitable for making cups has almost tripled in price over the last couple of years. This has been reflected in the price of the cups from Argentina. The cups that used to sell for about $25 are now selling for $74.


This fact is really affecting my line of work these days. As an insurance underwriter I am seeing a ton of claims come in of people ransacking vacant buildings for the copper pipes and wires. It is reeking havoc on our claims department. We are refusing to write vacant buildings for the time being.

-todd
"There's many a slip 'twixt the cup and the lip..." -English Proverb
BSutter
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What we are seeing is the ebb and flow of transition. If you want what is here you must get it, for we do not know when it will return, if ever.

Bill
Julie
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Just a tad off-topic, but the same sage advice applies to the Mel Babcock, Alan Warner, and Colin Rose product line(s).

Julie
Bill Palmer
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Anything that is manufactured by an individual who is a craftsman is subject to the same problem.

Regarding the copper problem, during the last five years, the number of stolen refrigeration units in Houston has multiplied by a factor of 10. Part of the problem is the number of scrap metal purchasers who advertise on television.

The biggest advertiser here was caught in a sting operation about 2 months ago.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Mad Jake
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Quote:
On 2007-04-30 13:54, flimnar wrote:
It seems to me that there is a growing disenchantment by many "Seasoned" (older) professionals regarding the magic community. The issues are sometimes left a bit cryptic, but on the Café, private emails and even on DVD releases, there seems to be--appears to be--a lot of anger. What's up? As one of the newer guys, it certainly makes me sad.

Flimnar


What happens is the older generation as you put it, sticks their nose in your business. While everyone is entitled to thier own opinion it is another thing to make slanderous accusations in blogs or verbaly.

Our company was threatend on another forum by an older craftsman who threatend to make our products and sell them cheaper. The companys response was not a reply in the forum, but in the form of retaliation. If he was going to slander our name claiming theft and copy, then I would indeed tool up and make his products, the bottom line being don't threaten us publicly with what you might do, when I have the ability to do what you have threatend us with. You can only wave a stick at an animal in anger so long before they will lash out and sobeit.

In the end it was the consumer that was confused, whom to believe, the new kid on the block or the older generation, well, one thing I've been at this manufacturing game from the time Kreskin was knocking on Paul Diamonds Magic and Fun Shop after hours in Ft. Lauderdale to watching Ken Brooke routines being mimographed in the back of another shop. And what is truely sad is, the egotistical minds that think they are always the best and always right, they use their well known talents and name to not only craft items, but to slander others. The whole thing is sickening.

RNT II purposely put up a prototype chop cup, with no dresslines and double spun walls. It was available for viewing on our website for 4 months. Not a word was said, but we were waiting. We went into production, then the crying started, the prototype we showed was a rip off and the crafter claimed it was his method blah blah blah. Funny thing is, RNT II doesn't write a check with their mouth that it can't cash with it's ass, meaning the cup we showed in question was a prototype from 1978 and had documented proof as we recieved it from the person who designed it. All it was is a Don Alan without the dresslines and made to look smaller as it was cut down. We had sent out a prediction to 13 customers of what the reaction would be when the cup was released, sure enough 13 called and were quite impressed how right on the money we were. The best the crafter could do is use name calling.

All this venting in this post leads to end of the Golden Age of cups. While I'm sure it is not over really, it will certainly slow down. While RNT II still has several sets in production both on the spinning lathe and CNC we are getting close to finishing them up.

To our customers and supporters who were able to think for themselves and determine and sniff out the political smears and *BS*, thank you, you are the ones that made the fight worth while and sticking it out for.

To those who slandered RNT II, created false accounts with hidden names to just bash us, well, you are the perfect example of the decline of the art and the availibility. While everyone was so quick to jump on the bandwagon and bash us, when the truth about the prior owner surfaced and all was out, not a single person publicly appologized but they sure as hell took the time to bash us.

While I will at some point no longer be with the company, RNT II is certainly not going quietly into the night. A recent run of cups recieved by a member here were spun by 17 yr old daughter, she's a helluv a welder too and still puts a dress on at the end of a work day. Now the old timers will have an entire staff of women to deal with, much harder than some clown, I promise them that. For those who claim I hid behind clown makeup, you are so wrong, the angry clown allowed me to to take on a persona for decade and was an outlet for my anger, behind the make up was actually someone who cared both of the art and the crafting of magic, those who took the time to really get to know me came to relize this.

Enough of my venting and ranting. In God, health and magic I wish everyone the best. Do the best you can do, don't let being the best blind your ambitions and take you down an egotistical road of self indulgence. One day you will wake up and find that the ones you love have all grown up and gone away and your ambitions were nothing but egotiscal obsessions, trust me, I know.

Magically and Sadly,
Jake
For quality Paul Fox Cups spun on Danny Dew's Paul Fox tooling visit us at www.airshipmagic.com
Bill Palmer
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Sometimes people who make these things forget where the ideas came from. Then when the people who originated the ideas (or who purchased them from the original inventor) start manufacturing them again, the people who made the derivative pieces go ballistic.

I've learned a lot about the personalities (and that is exactly what they are!) in the magical apparatus business over the past few years.

There is one coin maker who got permission from the originator of a particular gaffed coin set, who is being accused of ripping it off. The guy who accuses him of ripping it off doesn't know that the guy who gave him permission to make it pinched it from the originator -- WHO HAD BEEN WARNED NOT TO SHOW IT TO HIM!!!!

I'm glad to know that RnT II is not just going to fade into the night.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Glenn Watson
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Very interesting answers.Thanks,Glenn
This is my 18 th year on being a member of the cafe.
lint
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Glad to know RNT2 will continue on. God bless you Jake. -todd
"There's many a slip 'twixt the cup and the lip..." -English Proverb
Mad Jake
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There will most likely be a 1-2 lull before they produce anything. With my condition not getting any better really and no health insurance, ho hum, there is not much I will be able to help them with, but the products they have been discussing will please the community I'm sure. Most all Non Cup, with the exception of some SBL sets. But being a realist, I would say 2 years before the new products hit the market. None of the current products will be reproduced so collectors have a good investment and don't have to worry about a re-release.

Jake
For quality Paul Fox Cups spun on Danny Dew's Paul Fox tooling visit us at www.airshipmagic.com
Bill Palmer
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I have never thought of any of the cups I have purchased as an investment.

I also have several banjos. Banjos are going through the same kind of renaissance as the cups. People are converting old Gibson tenor banjos to 5-string instruments, sometimes without regard to making the changes reversible.

A banjo that sold for $500 during the 1930's can bring as much as $200,000, depending on the model. But the thing that is keeping the prices up on them is that the baby boomers are buying them right and left.

Some of the instruments being built today are far better than the ones made during the pre WW II era.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
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