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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Finger/stage manipulation » » Multiplying Billiard Balls (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Bill Hegbli
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Quote:
On 2011-08-02 05:54, Frank L. wrote:
Thanks Everyone!

Interestingly, I came across an old Genii forum post by Richard Kaufman, who prefers wood ones with the right varnish over Fakinis.
http://www.geniimagazine.com/forums/ubbt......r=193422

- Frank


Even a wood set from Germany will set you back $22.00 plus postage, alas, no instructions provided with them, from Daytona Magic if you can purchase over the Internet. You might find the Goshman Sponge Multiplying Balls less expensive and easier to work with and these come with basic instructions.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

Graduate of Chavez College of Prestidigitation and Showmanship

"Magic With A Twist Of Comedy"
Michael Baker
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I'd take exception to the multiplying sponges balls. Good idea on paper, but I like to FEEL the balls between my fingers. Extra weight is actually added security... at least to me.

Also... all this talk about what can and cannot be afforded is a topic that I soon tire of hearing. Whatever happened to saving up to reach a goal?? It is not prudent to count the coins in one's pocket and then look for what they can buy. That's putting the cart before the horse, and begins a habit of living with empty pockets and lower quality gains. This time I'm not kidding.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
Bill Hegbli
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Quote:
On 2011-08-02 13:15, Michael Baker wrote:
I'd take exception to the multiplying sponges balls. Good idea on paper, but I like to FEEL the balls between my fingers. Extra weight is actually added security... at least to me.

Also... all this talk about what can and cannot be afforded is a topic that I soon tire of hearing. Whatever happened to saving up to reach a goal?? It is not prudent to count the coins in one's pocket and then look for what they can buy. That's putting the cart before the horse, and begins a habit of living with empty pockets and lower quality gains. This time I'm not kidding.


Michael, this is not about you, but the OP Frank L., his wife is already on him for just being on the Café. What do you think she would do if she found out he spent over $100.00 on some balls.

A good salesman finds out the customers needs and fulfills those needs.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

Graduate of Chavez College of Prestidigitation and Showmanship

"Magic With A Twist Of Comedy"
Magnus Eisengrim
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Again, I'd like to point out that 3 videos will cost almost as much as a set of 1-3/4" Fakinis.

John
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.--Yeats
Michael Baker
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Quote:
On 2011-08-02 13:38, wmhegbli wrote:
Quote:
On 2011-08-02 13:15, Michael Baker wrote:
I'd take exception to the multiplying sponges balls. Good idea on paper, but I like to FEEL the balls between my fingers. Extra weight is actually added security... at least to me.

Also... all this talk about what can and cannot be afforded is a topic that I soon tire of hearing. Whatever happened to saving up to reach a goal?? It is not prudent to count the coins in one's pocket and then look for what they can buy. That's putting the cart before the horse, and begins a habit of living with empty pockets and lower quality gains. This time I'm not kidding.


Michael, this is not about you, but the OP Frank L., his wife is already on him for just being on the Café. What do you think she would do if she found out he spent over $100.00 on some balls.

A good salesman finds out the customers needs and fulfills those needs.


No, it's not about me, but you seem to take exception to my point, which is about you, not the OP. He can speak for himself.

To mention my counterpoint thoughts on a particular item (i.e. mult. sponge balls) is no different than you having done the same, but with a differing opinion. I gave a reason why I don't like them. Your mileage may vary. That's all.

Regarding the OP's wife, I think that is assuming a lot based on his tag line below the avatar.

Regarding spending the least amount of money possible to see if the entire subject is for him (as mentioned by the OP), I agree. But, I am not sure the CHEAPEST way out is ultimately the cheapest route. Inferior products end up costing more through replacements and upgrades, and don't offer a fair insight to the subject. Buying too cheap a product could very easily become the reason why someone becomes discouraged from further pursuit. If the first time you bought a Chevy, it was a lemon, you might come to the unfair conclusion that all Chevys are crap.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
Noel M
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I learned Billiard Balls from Henry Hay's, Amature Magicians Handbook. Its a resource that's still available for little cost. Even though quite old it teaches many of the classics of magic.
ftlum
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Roseville, CA
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Quote:
On 2011-08-02 14:46, Michael Baker wrote:
Quote:
On 2011-08-02 13:38, wmhegbli wrote:
Quote:
On 2011-08-02 13:15, Michael Baker wrote:
I'd take exception to the multiplying sponges balls. Good idea on paper, but I like to FEEL the balls between my fingers. Extra weight is actually added security... at least to me.

Also... all this talk about what can and cannot be afforded is a topic that I soon tire of hearing. Whatever happened to saving up to reach a goal?? It is not prudent to count the coins in one's pocket and then look for what they can buy. That's putting the cart before the horse, and begins a habit of living with empty pockets and lower quality gains. This time I'm not kidding.


Michael, this is not about you, but the OP Frank L., his wife is already on him for just being on the Café. What do you think she would do if she found out he spent over $100.00 on some balls.

A good salesman finds out the customers needs and fulfills those needs.


No, it's not about me, but you seem to take exception to my point, which is about you, not the OP. He can speak for himself.

To mention my counterpoint thoughts on a particular item (i.e. mult. sponge balls) is no different than you having done the same, but with a differing opinion. I gave a reason why I don't like them. Your mileage may vary. That's all.

Regarding the OP's wife, I think that is assuming a lot based on his tag line below the avatar.

Regarding spending the least amount of money possible to see if the entire subject is for him (as mentioned by the OP), I agree. But, I am not sure the CHEAPEST way out is ultimately the cheapest route. Inferior products end up costing more through replacements and upgrades, and don't offer a fair insight to the subject. Buying too cheap a product could very easily become the reason why someone becomes discouraged from further pursuit. If the first time you bought a Chevy, it was a lemon, you might come to the unfair conclusion that all Chevys are crap.


LOL! My wife is definitely on my case for spending too much $$ on magic Smile! I went over my "budget" last month according to her, but I'll probably end up buying the Levent DVDs (the trailer was pretty impressive) and a set of Vernets sometime soon. Fakinis can come later if I get good at this.

thanks guys!

- Frank

(PS: It sounds like the Levent DVDs are preferred over the McBride ones. Is that right? (I was thinking I might benefit from the coin material even if I end up not doing a lot of ball work, but I don't think I'd be using the thimble material.))
Magnus Eisengrim
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Just to lean on you a bit more, Frank, do you have any books or videos with billiard balls already? As I said before, the Mark Wilson routine is basic, but certainly fit for a professional gig. Tarbell has an excellent routine (Adam and Eve) with badly outdated patter. But the patter can be fixed easily enough.

Do you really need the DVDs to get going?

John
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.--Yeats
ftlum
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Although I've got a pretty good magic book collection, I don't have any stage / parlor books yet. Nothing that's been mentioned anyway. Sadly, the Rune Klan book didn't include the moves he used. Must have been too simple to bother publishing.

Frank
Michael Baker
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As long as you understand a basic routine, that is a great place to begin. In fact, it's probably the best place to start. Please don't feel this would be beneath you. Simplicity does not equal inferior. Billiard balls routines and moves can get fairly complex quickly. I only warn against trying to accomplish too much, so as to avoid unnecessary frustration.

Stick with something very basic at first, master it, and then give your energies into presenting it with some panache. Once you become comfortable with that, of course feel free to branch out, buy all the DVD's, books, etc.

The routine that I perform mostly these days is quite simple, even though in the past I've been able to master some pretty cool stuff. But, my goal is to entertain a lay audience. The simplicity of the routine allows me to focus on character portrayal. The moves themselves are almost by muscle memory. If the desire was to impress magicians then other thoughts might apply. These days for me, they don't. Smile

I don't know what kind of magic you do now, but mastering the billiard balls is a dedicated effort and quite a bit different than most anything else in magic. But, mastering them can be extremely fulfilling, too.

:)
~michael baker
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mtpascoe
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If you have Mark Wilson's book and Tarbell, then all you need to to do is buy the balls and you are ready. Buy the DVD's another time. They are good to learn from, especially Levent's as you can learn practically everything from it. I have suggested this before but if you are on a tight budget, do what I do. Save your money and buy the best.

Vernet is good and that's what I have used in the past. But, I am saving up for the Fakini's. I would have them by now, but they are difficult to get these days. The only thing you need to figure out next is what size you want to work with. And that's a topic that has been cover else where, so I'll leave it at that.
Michael Baker
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Quote:
On 2011-08-02 22:28, mtpascoe wrote:
If you have Mark Wilson's book and Tarbell, then all you need to to do is buy the balls and you are ready. Buy the DVD's another time. They are good to learn from, especially Levent's as you can learn practically everything from it. I have suggested this before but if you are on a tight budget, do what I do. Save your money and buy the best.

Vernet is good and that's what I have used in the past. But, I am saving up for the Fakini's. I would have them by now, but they are difficult to get these days. The only thing you need to figure out next is what size you want to work with. And that's a topic that has been cover else where, so I'll leave it at that.


Very succinct and exactly the point I hoped to make! Smile Thanks!

Regarding ball size, go out and buy a couple balls, golf balls, wood balls from Michael's, cat toys, whatever. Try to find a couple different sizes. Practice rolling one between the fingers, back and forth. Then add a second ball and roll them in sequence (you have to roll one out of the way for the next to occupy it's space). See how it feels to hold 4 balls between all the fingers of one hand. Practice just basic palms... finger palm, and classic palm.

Doing this will give you a reasonable idea of the size you are comfortable with, and you will hardly have spent more than a few bucks. Smile

In fact, you can make yourself a set (sans shell) by painting some wood balls. If you make a set of say 5 balls, 2 the same color, and the rest each a different color, you can muster up a pretty cool rainbow ball routine that uses no shell and just some basic productions, vanishes and color changes.

You can also work up a pretty cool perpetual ball routine with just a couple balls, and a box or a hat, or even your pocket. You can also put together a nice little routine with just one ball and a silk.

Balls are one of the most aesthetic and ergonomic props a magician can use, a lot of things they can represent aside from just red or white balls, and a lot of ways they can be used.

There's more than one way to skin a cat! Smile
~michael baker
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mtpascoe
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Ouch! I would hate to be that cat!
Michael Baker
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Quote:
On 2011-08-02 22:49, mtpascoe wrote:
Ouch! I would hate to be that cat!


Ha-ha!! Yeah, sorry! Old time expression being used quite metaphorically! Smile
~michael baker
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mtpascoe
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Funny, years ago I bought the Joy Of Cooking and they actually show you more than one to skin a squirrel. "Hey Rocky, watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat..."
Michael Baker
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On 2011-08-02 23:03, mtpascoe wrote:
Funny, years ago I bought the Joy Of Cooking and they actually show you more than one to skin a squirrel. "Hey Rocky, watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat..."


Joy of Cooking has several unusual recipes for some interesting game meats that seem more like a list of road kill.
~michael baker
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mtpascoe
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That's the "How to Cook Kentucky Style" section. Finger lickin' good!
Anatole
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I would also recommend a trip to libraries to find what is available on their shelves. As a teenager in the 60's, I found Henry Hay's _The Amateur Magician's Handbook_ in the public library, and Ottokar Fischer's _Illustrated Magic_ in my high school library. Between the two of them, I mastered enough of the hand magic material to make informed decisions of what to spend my money on before I ever set foot in a magic shop. When I finally did enter a magic shop, I found that the fundamentals I had learned from the library books went a long way toward establishing my credentials as a serious student of the art of magic. Fortunately, the owner of The Magic Shop--Earl Edwards--also believed in the value of learning from books. Eventually I became a demonstrator in his shop. (His was the classic "old style" magic shop that sold novelties in the front of the store, including the Adams and Royal magic lines. You had to establish your credentials as a serious student of magic to be admitted to "the back room" where the professional apparatus and books were displayed.)

Another big plus about the Henry Hay book was the appendix with a list of magic dealers. Thanks to that appendix, I had also discovered the Fleming Book Company (there's a name out of the past!) and had ordered the Goodlette Dodson _Exhiibition Card Fans_ monograph from them. That material had also been studied and mastered before I ever set foot in a magic shop. (Fortunately, that was in the days when talcum powder still had zinc stearate in it, so I was able to treat my Bicycle cards with talcum powder so that some of the magical effects from the Dodson book looked like magic and not just flourishes. Among my memorabilia I have a letter from Goodlette Dodson. Although I never met him, he had heard about my skills with "Exhibition Card Fans" from another Virginia magician who had given him my address. A seldom seen fan flourish from the Dodson book is "The Buzz Saw Fan." I don't think it has ever been shown on any of the card manipuation DVDs.)

Denny Haney is another magic shop proprietor who knows the value of learning from books and who has a terrific inventory of the classic magic titles as well as the newest print titles. Yes, he carries all the DVDs as well. But he is another magic shop owner who agrees that the REAL treasures are found between the covers of books.

----- Amado "Sonny" Narvaez
----- Sonny Narvaez
Bill Hegbli
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Our library's clean out there books every year. They have a big sale and get rid of books to make room for new publications. That includes magic books, even thought they don't really change over the years. Our library also will get magic DVDs, one local magician had them get the Slydini DVDs in for him. So maybe you can check on their DVD selection as well. A lot of libraries also have taken the route of scanning the books in PDF format. Things are changing rapidly, and we have to keep up. We all might just have to get use to the new reader tablets more quickly then we expect. There will always be books, but I think if you want to keep them more then a year, they will have to be in private collections only.

I heard they are attempting to scan every book in the world to make a huge data base of every book known to man. It is a huge project, I just hope there will be access for everybody for free.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

Graduate of Chavez College of Prestidigitation and Showmanship

"Magic With A Twist Of Comedy"
Anatole
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I am a retired school librarian and I have lectured at many state, regional and national library/media conferences on many aspects of librarianship. There are two major criteria that librarians use in deciding whether an item (whether it is a book or a video) should be discarded: First is the number of times the item has been checked out. If the last date due stamped on the back of the item is a year or more in the past, then the librarian may decide that the item has served its usefulness and withdraw it from the collection, whereupon it is either put in a library's "Used Books for Sale" section or donated to a charity. The second major criterion for discarding an item is whether the information it presents is up-to-date. For instance, books about dinosaurs that show the animals as sluggish, dim-witted, cold-blooded reptiles dragging their tails are way out of date and deserve to be withdrawn. Books about the planets that present Saturn as the only planet with a ring system are way out of date. But many instructional books about the arts are timeless. And of course the "classics" remain on the shelves unless they start to fall apart. I would guess that a hundred years from now, Mark twain's books, Dr. Seuss's books and Chris Van Allsburg's books will still be on the shelves--circulating, and enchanting children of all ages.

----- Amado "Sonny" Narvaez
----- Sonny Narvaez
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