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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Step right up! » » How to attach I.T. to the Worm (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

EndersGame
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What's the best way to attach I.T. to the Magic Worm? Mine came with thin fishing line that is quite visible, and now that I have proper invisible thread (the regular kind, non-elastic) I'm trying to use that instead. I have tried just wrapping the thread around the tip/nose and tying a couple of knots, but when pulling the worm out of a glass or when there is some pressure, the knots seem to slip free. I expect that using magician's wax or putty would be too obviously visible. What technique do you use to attach the I.T. to the Worm? Thanks in advance for any suggestions!
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DonDriver
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I put a small piece of scotch tape at the end of the IT so I know where the end is and can see it.Than just tie a few knots and cut the tape off.I don't understand why you're having problems.

Don
sethb
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In my experience, the tying technique should be the same for IT or fishing line -- a simple overhand knot done at least twice, and three times for IT if you have the patience. Just pull gently a few times on the first knot to take up any slack and make sure it is tight, without breaking the IT. The nose of the worm is usually a bit serrated, so it's hard for me to imagine the loop sliding off the worm's nose, unless it wasn't tight enough to begin with.

I have never had a worm slip out of its loop as you describe, but I have broken plenty of IT along the way instead. If the overall length is still OK, I just tie the two broken ends back together with one double-stranded overhand knot, which is much less time-consuming than retying each end of the IT (at the worm's nose and at the paper clip I use as the anchor).

There cannot be too much pressure on the worm, otherwise the IT will break, so minimize friction wherever you can. Make sure your glass has a rounded lip as opposed to a sharp, pointed or square edge, which will fray the IT and make resistance to the worm jumping smoothly over that edge. I use two clear 16-oz. Solo soft plastic cups with rounded lips; I got a dozen of them for free from my local supermarket, which uses them as take-out containers for cut-up fruit. This way, if I drop a cup by accident, I don't end up with broken glass all over the place. Similarly, if your hands are rough or sweaty, a little powdered cornstarch on them, particularly on the backs of the hands and the thumb crotches, will go a long way towards ensuring smooth handling.

Hope this info helps. SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
sethb
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Don, thanks for the Scotch tape idea, that should save me some tying time and also some eyestrain as well. There's nothing like the voice of experience to provide a great tip.

I love IT but it doesn't love me, especially when I'm trying to make overhand knots in it. SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
EndersGame
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Sorry if I wasn't clear in my first post, but I've not had the worm slip out of the loop (as Seth points out, the nose is serated serrated so it's unlikely to happen), but rather that the knot itself unravelled and came loose. I suspect that the problem is that I just tied one knot - I'll try tying three or four knots as you suggest, hopefully that will do the trick.

Don's suggestion about using Scotch tape on the end is a good one - I've been doing something similar by balling up some magician's wax on the end of the thread. Either way, it certainly makes it easier to tie the knot than fiddling with the thread alone.

As for dropping a glass cup by accident - yup, been there, done that. I was doing the effect for some young children, and was able to blame the "worm" for wriggling too much and making me drop the glass, but it's not an experience I'd like to repeat! Are the soft plastic cups you use completely transparent rather than opaque?
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mota
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It can be tough to see the invisible thread.

Tie them in bright lights with a white background if possible. A piece of white cardboard works well.

Tie a double overhand knot, give it 8-10 very gentle tugs, then loop it once more and do 8-10 more gentle tugs.

Wrap the other end around any piece of cardboard...I used cut-out pieces from soda 12 packs. Then tape around the cardboard to hold it. You can adjust the lengths very accurately like this.

Depending on your set-up consider having two worms ready to go at all times. I had a black apron with three pouches. Each side pouch was velcro at the top and the cardboard piece went in the velcro. I set up one worm in each side. If one line broke I would say, "Watch the amazing color-changing worm", put the broken worm in the other pocket and bring out the good one. Make a joke of this as you say, "You need two worms for this trick".

Also, make sure the worms are of different colors...an easy mistake to make if you have never used this out before.

The soft plastic cups are transparent. Use large Dixie cups or other "party" type of disposable cup. Using glass or hard plastic makes them break when they blow over.

If you choose you can weight down the cups by taping a nickel in the bottom of each cup. If you do this some people will be convinced that those are magnets and "somehow" that is how it works. If you flat out tell them no magnets in the pitch they won't believe you but you won't get any beefs either.

Also consider getting a plastic box with dividers inside, like a fishing box or sewing box. You can then make up twenty or so worms in advance. You will go all day with no breakage, then suddenly go through five...it is how it seems to work.

When you string the worms have some tissues ready. Stretch the thread over a tissue and fold it up neatly lengthwise, quartered or so, then put it in the box. If you don't you will run into tangled messes when you go for the pre-strung worms. Laying it out on tissue stops the tangling, especially on the nose of the worm.
sethb
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Topov, yes the plastic cups are clear and completely transparent, not "frosted" or anything like that.

I second Mota's idea about using a small plastic fishing tackle box to hold the worms, you can get one in K-Mart for a few bucks. It should have 6-8 small rectangular compartments, perfect for storing pre-threaded worms.

The tissue idea is good, too, although fortunately I have only had one worm tangle while in storage. I lay the thread in first, then put the worm on top of that, and it seems to work pretty well. I also put a piece of bubble wrap over the top of all the compartments, to keep the worms in their separate compartments. SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
sethb
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BTW, has anyone has ever tried using Kevlar IT with the worms? I've been very satisfied with the IT that I got from my worm wholesaler, but it does tend to break from time to time.

Just wondered if the Kevlar would be a little more durable, even if it's slightly less "invisible." SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
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