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Jamie D. Grant
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Hiya Gang!

I just picked up a beautiful Shiner and have been playing around with it. Just wondering if there's any books, notes, ideas, etc. that I can find anywhere. I reckon a lot of people, smarter than I, have come up with some interesting techniques.


Thanks!

~jamie
TRICK OF THE YEAR: Industrial Revelation, BOOK OF THE YEAR: The Approach, The AIP Bottle, and my new book Scenic 52, can all be found over here: SendWonder.com
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silverking
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Steve Forte - "Gambling Protection Series" DVD's (disc #2) has a bit on shiners.
But as noted quite a few times here, and elsewhere...these discs aren't a tool to teach the moves, but a tool to highlight what game protection is actually protecting.

Also, Forte's "Casino Game Protection" book has a bit on shiners, including Hand Held Shiners, Cigarette Shiners, Chip Shiners, Money Shiners, Glass Shiners, etc.

What you will find Jamie, is that there's quite a bit out there on various types of shiners, but very little (in reality, probably nothing) that talks about their actual contemporary use.
You'll also find a fair bit of information on the use of cell phones, rings, lighters, and other "impromptu" shiners as well.

The reason for this lack of information has been talked about here in the Gambling Spot before, and it's related to the fact that some of the glims in use today, and some of the methods involved are still pretty advanced...still making money, and thus not written about or discussed in detail by those in the know.

Much (if not all) of the "who", "how", and "where" of contemporary use is still considered to be underground.

You'll find plenty of standard references in books like "Protection: The Sealed Book". There are half a dozen or so old printed gems that are historically accurate and interesting, but don't bring anything new to the table, and don't have anything to do with current usage.
steve ehlers
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Tony Giorgio put out a pamphlet with a shiner that was very good. Also you might want to check out work by Steve Forte who includes information on shiners in his book on poker protection.

Steve
AMcD
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Using shiners is very very difficult!

You need perfect light conditions and a very good sight. Because the use of cut cards nowadays, most of the time you're gonna look at the top card while dealing, or while getting the deck into your hand before dealing.

Ring shiners are hard to use for instance. I mean, shiners imply you stare at an object at one moment, which, mainly, requires "weird" hand position, noticeable angles, etc. Spotting the top card with a ring shiner while dealing is an Art!

There are new object you can find around the tables nowadays, like cell phones, card clips, protector chips, etc. But their importance is very often exaggerated. Even in family games you are now allowed to get your cell phone besides your hands while playing Smile.

Don't forget that shiners can be used to look cards already dealt too. Like a "mirror" behind other players. What? Mirrors? Yeah, mirrors. Play in a pub, you'll understand what I mean...

Hey, a couple of hints now! No one will be surprised by the pint of Coke you always have when you play... Glass + black + reflection.... hmmm Smile

Another one, my favorite. I really like the new I-wannabe-Hansen-Ivy-etc with their black, blue or orange specs at the card table. Especially when they check their hole cards lol.
Jamie D. Grant
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This is why I've always loved "The Gambling Spot" here on the Café. I find here, almost more than anywhere else, friends appreciate the importance of real-world application.

So thanks for the help! And you've all nailed it on the head. The one I picked up is on the back of a nickel. I have Steve's book- so I'll go take a look there- and it sounds like there's a few other places I can go explore. In the end, I reckon, I'm guessing it'll come up to personal development. This is definitely the magic side of me, though, lol. Trying to use something I picked up rather than what is best suited, lol.

On that note, I did a gig in the summer where the entire back of the stage was a massive mirror. Crazy. I was taping up tablecloths for hours! Talk about a shiner for the audience!!

~jamie
TRICK OF THE YEAR: Industrial Revelation, BOOK OF THE YEAR: The Approach, The AIP Bottle, and my new book Scenic 52, can all be found over here: SendWonder.com
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Cagliostro
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One of the best “real” hustlers I have ever known was Jack Newton, sometimes called “Little Jackie Newton.” I don’t know I he is still with us but if so he would be about 92 years old as of this writing.

Jack was a top-notch old-time card hustler and a class act. A real old school gentleman and he beat some very sharp and knowledgeable gamblers and cheats for big numbers in his day. His specialty was beating other cheats and he played a great deal of 5 card stud and Gin Rummy. One of his great skills was using a shiner and he was absolutely brilliant with the concept. He showed me uses I never would have dreamed of. For example, he showed me one technique where you could look directly at your opponent's face as you dealt the cards and still get every card off the top. Absolutely brilliant!!!

Top international casino hustler, great card counter, incredible Gin Rummy and Five Card Stud hustler, you name it – he did some very clever stuff. As I said, he beat some extremely sharp people during his lifetime. He was one of the “monster” hustlers I learned from.

He wrote a book in his later years entitled, “Gentleman Jack Newton – Confessions of a Crossroad Gambler” in which he describes one of the shiners he may have originated. The book is not a particularly good book (but a worthwhile read). I don’t know the reason he wrote it but he only tipped about 1% of what he knew and could do in the book.

The one shiner he tipped in the book is fairly well known at this point in time, but he made a ton of money with it in his day as it was virtually unknown back then – and that is just one of the shiners he used. The others shiners and “techniques” were just too good to write about – and… using shiners were just one of several very clever methods he used to win with. By the way, playing a good shiner undetectably against very sharp and astute players for big money is an art and takes a lot of ability, skill and "stones."

I know the members have their own current heroes they look up to because these guy are skillful at doing a lot of fancy moves, have made a reputation among the Internet crowd, do expose demos and sell books and tapes, and I am certainly not belittling those gents in any wayalthough I doubt most, if not all of them could get the money successfully over time in tough big money games. However, some of the methods and techniques I have seen used under fire by some "legendary in their calling" hustlers would literally knock your socks off – and quite frankly I don’t care if anyone believes that or not.
silverking
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I believe it.

A chap held in very high regard here noted once that contemporary shiner work when done very well remains one of the strongest plays around.

In PM's, it became clear to me that this level of work simply isn't shared, and isn't known to anybody outside those who actually innovate and use it on a regular basis.
AMcD
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Among the funny shiners I've been shown the last years one was very clever. It was a pile of fake chips glued together with a small, very small, mirror on one side. From the front and even from the sides it was absolutely impossible to notice anything. Very nice.

I've met guys with balls, really. Sometimes they show you stuff hard to believe. But it works. Here's another technique, bold, but efficient if you are like those guys. The "mirror" is simply on your lap, well, close to your groin if you prefer. You look at the cards when dealing, or when pausing before dealing burn cards etc, simply keeping the deck close to your body, or when tapping the deck for squaring it against your chest, a bit like BlackJack dealers do.

One was even more creative, he simply used his belt buckle! I call that a genius.

I could keep going for hours, but I'm just a current hero, known on Internet, exposing and selling books. I need to restrain myself, I wouldn't like to interfere with professionals. We are so glad, lucky and blessed to have such guys here (Okay, they mainly pontificate instead of showing, teaching and debating, but what an unbelievable honor it is).
Cagliostro
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Quote:
On 2014-02-06 16:22, AMcD wrote:
I could keep going for hours, but I'm just a current hero, known on Internet, exposing and selling books.

You are definitely my hero, Arnold. Smile
Gary Plants
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Page 108 of The New Phoenix magazine has a big article by Audley Walsh on shiners. Probably more info here than anywhere else in print. Remember , this was a magazine for magicians. Arnold, your chip stack shiner is in this article.
splice
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I got the Allen-Giorgio shiner, it looks nice. The small manuscript that came with it is fairly basic. There was a section on shiners in Jon Racherbaumer's MO Magazine #5, mainly for magicians. Probably the most relevant stuff will be in Steve's books and tapes.

That being said, I prefer combing through the existing stuff, basic as it is, to hearing stories of great, advanced, and incredibly clever technique not published anywhere that no one can talk about. That may just be me.
AMcD
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@hofzinser

Oh, this shiner is in many sources. What I meant is that I was surprised to see how efficient it is.

Shiners are possible out of everything. Watch bracelet, lamp on the ceiling, etc. It seems there is no limit to creativity here. Here's a funny one: some cut cards, made of plastic, are reflective (!), just shift the cut card a bit and you can see the bottom card!!! Dunno if I still have that kind of cut card here, if yes, I'l post a picture later.
tommy
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Why does the Cincinnati Kid inspect the light shade?
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Marlin1894
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Quote:
On 2014-02-07 12:35, tommy wrote:
Why does the Cincinnati Kid inspect the light shade?


He wanted to see if it was a genuine Tiffany.
Cagliostro
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There are many items that can reflect a playing card with various degrees of clarity. In my opinion, that is really not the key to their use.

The key to me is how efficient and deceptive the shiner is and what is it to be used for. If used for gambling purposes, does it give continuous peeks or only an occasional look? How deceptive is it in actual use? How normal does the hand position look, is it over the table and how normal does the deal look? Would it be readily detected by an astute observer who has been around the block a few times so to speak and is playing you for serious money? Also, can you clean it up if suspected or can the “evidence” be seized? Are you using it for magic trick purposes or for gambling purposes and on and on???

Looking back over some old gambling books and catalogs written 50 or more years ago, one can find some very clever shiners that were probably more “practical” than some or the more “modern” shiners.

Looking at the KC Card Company’s 40th Anniversary catalog, on page 41 they list Ring Shiners, Regulation Shiners with Detachable Clips, Palm Shiners, Convex Shiners, Bill Shiners, Match Box Shiners and as I recall from memory, the old books and some catalogs listed Pipe Shiners, Chip Shiners, Cigarette Shiners and so forth.

Also, as a teenager studying Mental Magic, there were some clever shiner applications for Mentalism. I remember Richard Himber had a mental magic trick where one side of a U.S. quarter was shined up to be highly reflective, almost like a mirror. It was a very good and deceptive mental trick but the gimmick was not really practical for gambling purposes.

Sure you can have a money clip or reflective cell phone on the table or whatever, but how deceptive would it be except again some very easy prey, how obvious or awkward does the deal look under fire, is it obvious you are reading the top card and so forth?

The shiner used is just part of it. Using it cleverly and deceptively is just as important if not more important in many instances. It takes considerable skill to use a shiner under fire and not get nailed. Of course, there are those hustlers that have more balls than brains, but that is their skin on the line, not mine.

I would think one would want to fool those who know about shiners, especially the more obvious and common ones.

It also depends on what one is using it for. Most on this board are using it for some type magic, mentalism or gambling type trick and that is a different application with a lot more leeway. There seems to be some good literature available for those type "magic' applications.

Of course that is just my opinion on this for whatever it is worth to the individual reader.
AMcD
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Times change too. A pipe shiner, a match box shiner, a cigarette shiner, etc., would be impossible nowadays. Maybe you don't know but smoking is now forbidden everywhere.

Rules change too. I don't remember places were objects were allowed on the table. In my context, a card protector is OK, but that's all. Phones are not allowed on the table. Therefore you have to use items on you or around you (jewels, ceiling, walls, furniture). In many amateur games, you are not allowed to hold the deck once the cards are dealt for instance. Glimpsing is still possible but there are obviously less possibilities. Etc.

Clothes are different too. Hard to hide a holdout when everyone around the table has a t-shirt. Don't get me wrong, you're still allowed to wear a tuxedo, but you're gonna look like a black sheep Smile.

Always the same story, contexts and cultures. But the most important difference, to me, is the time we live today. Very little things that worked in the past can work today. 90% of what's in old books is just obsolete. Nice stories anyway.
silverking
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I have an old mentalism shiner, it's a mirror that slides in and out of a block of 15 Bicycle Rider playing cards, with the remainder as loose cards on top of it.

Not usable at a gambling table.

Marketed as a magic trick, but yet another example of the "shiner inside a legitimate item" line of thinking.

It seems that many of the shiners of yore, pipes, match boxes, ciggy's, chip stacks, coins with one side polished, lighters, drinking glasses, etc are overexposed such that seeing any of them sitting on a poker table, or even being handled by a player from their pockets would raise maximum suspicion amongst those who bother to investigate such things.

I think it lends strength to the concept of the "how" being much more important than the "what"....although I suspect further that the "what" could still surprise more than a few of us.

As a guy with a bit of a beer belly, I've had a favorite shirt fitted with some replacement buttons. My belly definitely sticks out a bit when I sit down to play poker.
Cagliostro
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Quote:
2014-02-07 14:34, AMcD wrote:
Times change too. A pipe shiner, a match box shiner, a cigarette shiner, etc., would be impossible nowadays. Maybe you don't know but smoking is now forbidden everywhere.
Rules change too. I don't remember places were objects were allowed on the table. In my context, a card protector is OK, but that's all. Phones are not allowed on the table.

It is true that times change but concepts don't. Keep THAT in mind.

Not everyone plays in small time card rooms for small stakes.

Perhaps your limited world is not reflective of the entire world and of all conditions encountered although you seem to imply it is. There are big money private poker games, private Gin Rummy games and some good activity in Country clubs and on golf tours.

However, I want to thank you for your extremely helpful and gracious remark that maybe I don't know that smoking is not allowed in public card rooms. You are a fountain of up-to-date information which I appreciate greatly. I especially liked the "new" concept of using a mirror in or on one's scrotum, with or without one's fly open. At least times haven't changed on having a scrotum, yet. Smile

I should add, I have seen some professionally run Las Vegas casino poker games where objects are allowed on the table (not casino table games though). However, I sure there are some small-time games outside the U.S. and especially outside of Vegas where the players are evidently much, much sharper. Smile

Quote:
2014-02-07 14:34, AMcD wrote:
Clothes are different too. Hard to hide a holdout when everyone around the table has a t-shirt.

I can't recall ever playing in any game where everyone at the table had a t-shirt on, or a hard hat for that matter. I can't even recall playing in a game where someone had rings on most of his fingers. But, that's just the games I play in. Obviously my experience is greatly limited in that regard. Smile

Quote:
2014-02-07 14:34, AMcD wrote:
Always the same story, contexts and cultures. But the most important difference, to me, is the time we live today. Very little things that worked in the past can work today.

I strongly disagree. Contexts, cultures, situations, ethnicity and then lastly perhaps to a lesser degree times are different, although the times we live in don't change concepts or principles. In fact, I don't think I have ever met a professional hustler that would disagree with that. Once again, the most important things (like all the things that are necessary beyond gimmicks and moves), don't really change much if at all. Of course, there are a lot of new demo moves that look good and are exciting to watch, performed demonstration style. I like to watch them myself sometimes.

In my opinion, if someone does not understand that there are things more important and are the tail that wags the dog, at least in a professional gambling scenario...well... Smile
AMcD
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Guys I play with are dressed like that 90% of the time:

Image


Image


Image


We can have this too:

Image


Rings? Jewels? Frankly, where do you live? You have never seen a Gambler wearing rings in Vegas?

Rings:

Image


Sometimes, with my 3 rings I'm almost ridiculous at the table! I can meet players with 5 or more! Besides I don't always wear them, it's kind of a trademark for me.

Big watches:

Image


I've NEVER said my context, my world are the rule, NEVER! In 0 post out of 2,000. But YOU have problem accepting OTHER people's world. And your never ending story about you and only you knowing the truth, the pros, etc., is becoming boring, very boring. Millions of people play for pennies around the world, millions of people steal pennies, hustle for very low money. I think they don't care about your multi-millions sleight of hand artists (provided they exist, because I've been lucky to talk with a few Las Vegas underground legends and they die poor, alone and the word summarizing the end of their existence is poverty).

I told you many times, don't read me. I'd like not to read you, but you drop my name constantly. You would like an autograph? Or maybe you want me to leave this place? No problem, I did it many times, I increase the delay each time. Here's my proposition, I won't post anymore for 2014. Is this what you want? It's OK for me.
Cagliostro
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Quote:
On 2014-02-07 15:38, silverking wrote:
It seems that many of the shiners of yore, pipes, match boxes, ciggy's, chip stacks, coins with one side polished, lighters, drinking glasses, etc. are overexposed such that seeing any of them sitting on a poker table, or even being handled by a player from their pockets would raise maximum suspicion amongst those who bother to investigate such things.

I agree 100%. Going back 100 years or so those items no doubt worked, but there has been too much exposure along these lines. In fact, referring to the Jackie Newton post, he would not have been caught dead using any of these type shiners, or any that have been described so far on this thread. He invented his own shiners and he did not do so by looking around to see what MIGHT serve as a shiner. There cannot be anything used that might create the slightest suspicion you are cheating or using a glim. Recall his specialty was beating professional cheaters – guys who knew most of this stuff already and knew it well…and…he had to be able to see all the necessary cards with his light.

Quote:
On 2014-02-07 15:38, silverking wrote:
I think it lends strength to the concept of the "how" being much more important than the "what"....although I suspect further that the "what" could still surprise more than a few of us.

I believe it would. A real pro would want to have the best of both worlds of course. However, I should add that it has been my direct experience that a pro that has proven to be able to get the money and has all the necessary elements in place, will still usually be able to successfully get the money even with a lesser gaff, while someone who has a better gaff without all the necessary grift sense would not do as well or even get caught.

Picking the right spot, the psychology involved, being relaxed but on high alert – not missing any possible suspicion or heat, laughing, joking, conning the players, being a regular guy and well-liked, but at the same time having the grift sense necessary to get it on. That is really the way the most successful do it.

For example, I would bet my money that a pro with a mediocre bottom deal who has gotten the money before with his deal over the most beautiful bottom deal done by someone who hasn’t developed that grift sense – assuming worthwhile games with astute and experienced players. One has to build up and get the necessary experience in easier spots before he tackles the tough situations where he can make good scores.
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