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Topic: Overall Fav. Cups
Message: Posted by: m@t (May 18, 2003 04:10AM)
Hi Guys,

I've been reading through all the cup and ball posts and have noticed that there isn't one topic that simply has listings of everyones favourite cups, all the opinions on different cups were spread out in different areas.

Any chance of everyone writing their favourite set of cups and its dealer and I'll be able to see the range of popularity.

I'll start

The Gazzo cups- avaliable from http://www.magicpitch.com :)
Message: Posted by: Andrew E. Miller (May 18, 2003 12:07PM)
I like non-metal cups! Things that aren't usually thought of as a cups and balls set. If I was a collector or something like that, I would say that the Porper Cups or the Fohrman Cups are the best in quality, best looking, and best in feel.

Message: Posted by: m@t (May 18, 2003 12:45PM)
Cool- I was kind of taking about them in a performance way (on the street), rather then a collection.
Message: Posted by: MagiUlysses (May 19, 2003 08:25AM)
Greetings and Salutations,

I'm currently heavily into my Bosco cups from Harries in Sweden, which I'm using at RenFaires. I really enjoy Pete Biro's cups -- they're huge. I'm looking forward to working with them on the streets.

Just my $.02 (USD), YMMV.

Joe in KC

Make magic happen, live a great adventure!
Message: Posted by: kid iowa (May 19, 2003 09:43AM)
I had a set of Rings N Things cups that I used on the street that I enjoyed, before they were stolen that is. The Gazzo set is hands down the best, I've been working on them for a while and they just scream MAGIC.
Message: Posted by: Harry Murphy (May 19, 2003 12:04PM)
Wow! Talk about a subjective question! What is the best (fill in the blank)? Well, what works the best for me may very well not work at all for you. However, I do have favorites when it comes to the cups I use. I tend to use different props for different venues. Thus, I have more than one favorite in general.

For years I have used a Bertram/Miller set of cups (from Magic Inc in the 60’s) exclusively for my street shows. They are heavy, could take a beating (a little Brass-o cleans them up nicely), and had a nice overall “look” to them.

I recently bought a “used” set of Pete Biro’s “Galli-Galli” cups for the streets. I had not good reason to change but thought that Pete’s cup fit the bill (and the price). I simply wanted a bigger cup with a Danny Drew look to it. The Galli-Gally cups are aesthetically appealing, have very nice weight to them, and are huge! I could have bought two sets of the Galli-Galli cups for what the Gazzo cost me and still had some money left over. These cups double of a bucket for a Misers Dream too! Now if Pete would just make a Chop cup to match, I’d be in heaven.

The cups I presently use for my stand-up act (comedy club/parlor/platform) is a single cup from my Dominique Duviviur set, a ceramic coffee mug, and a Starbucks, paper coffee cup (yes I do a version of Bob Read’s version of Vernon’s Cups and Balls). For sit down close-up performances I will use the cups from the Dominique Duviviur set (either a three cup, two cup, or one cup routine). The Dominique Duviviur set is very nice looking, on the small side (even compared with a Morrissey cup), and handle great (tip off move, etc).
Message: Posted by: KingStardog (May 19, 2003 12:22PM)
Although I know Pete's cups or the Gazzo cups are probably the best tools for the job, My favorites are my stainless steel double shot cups, and the Morrissey combo set in copper. (small size) They just feel good to me.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (May 20, 2003 01:27AM)
When I first got Pete's Gali Gali cups I thought they were too big for me. Now, they feel just right. One advantage is that they are so large, they cover your hand while you load. It's whatever you get used to. One big consideration is feeding final loads into your cups. You must consider that the larger sized cups have a bigger appetite and figure out where you're going to stash all that food (final loads) and how you're going to deliever it.
Message: Posted by: Turk (May 20, 2003 02:12AM)
I have a set of four small English white china "cups" (actually old salt bowls for the dining room table?)

The cups are cylindrical, have a 1/4" cobalt blue band at the opening and two gold bands surrounding the blue band. The opening is 1 3/4" in diameter at the opening (tapering slightly toward the base) and are 1 5/8" tall. On the bottom of each cup are the notations "Made in England" and "B&L".

I purchased these about 23 years ago when I was just getting into magic and they have sat ona shelf ever since. I'm thinking about using these in a shell routine instead of walnut shells.

What do you think about these as a shell game prop? Can you think of any other uses for the cups?

Thanks for the info.

Message: Posted by: Mark Rough (May 20, 2003 06:12AM)
I recently stumbled upon a set of Pheonix cups while in Chicago at a very reasonable price. WOW. Maybe not the best for street work, not as big as the Gazzo or Galli-Galli cups, but I love them. Before that I was very attached to a set of copper Morrisey cups and a set of wooden Indian cups. I liked them both but am really enjoying the weight of my new ones.

Message: Posted by: Dennis Loomis (May 20, 2003 02:53PM)
Wow, over the years, I've had several "favorites."
My first good set of cups was a Paul Fox Set from Danny Dew. I bought them from Roy Kissel's shop in Detroit, along with a copy of Dai Vernon's Book of Magic. Roy spent the better part of three days helping me with the basic Vernon moves. I still have those cups and love them dearly. However, when they became unavailable, I retired them and switched to the Rings 'N Things version designed by Harry Monti. Used them for years, and they are in the illustrations of my Cups and Balls Book.
However, just last week I received a set of the Riser Traditionals from Jim Riser. They have become a prized possession. I think that this somewhat taller "traditional" design with it's taper is very deceptive. The final load balls just don't seem like they would even fit in the cup. If you want to see a picture of this, click on this link:
Scroll down the page past Mentalism 101 and you'll see a picture of the Riser Tradition Cup with a tennis ball on top. It's almost impossible to believe that the ball would fit in the cup... but it does.
Bob Read feels the same way about this traditional design. Yes, it's a bit taller stack to carry than one of the "squatty" cups, but I think it's worth it.
I'm working on a new edition of my Cups and Balls book and it will probably be illustrated with photos of the Riser Traditionals.
Dennis Loomis
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (May 20, 2003 03:40PM)
I probably have 60 sets of cups in my display.

Depending on the routine I wish to do I would use (in no particular order).

Riser Mini Cups (for carrying ease)
Paul Fox standard size
Johnny Paul cups (used with sponge balls)
Indian Cups (the ones I market)

I don't USE the Galli Galli, Jumbo Riser or Gazzo cups as I do not work street situations, and don't do big loads.

If I did, I would evaluate those again.

Read on :cups:

OK, here is the LATEST info on a way to load a cup that will fool magicians (and real people too).

To really fool a magician use this with a chop cup (but it can be used with three cups too). The reason for a chop cup is you only need to do one load and will NAIL anybody as it is so radical.

To really do it, do not put the load item (I suggest for this a lime--it is dark and round--or a potato).

Have it in a holder under edge of your jacket (so you don't go to a pocket for the steal). Or you could have it in a sleeve?

You get to a point in the routine where there is a small ball under the cup and when you pick up the cup the ball will be revealed.

Pause, comment, whatever... and as secretly as you can... get the load ball.


Pick up the cup and turn horizontally mouth 90-degrees to table and aimed right back toward you.

The hand with the load ball does NOT load the cup... but reaches forward and picks up the ball that was just revealed.

However, ON THE WAY FORWARD you THROW the ball into the cup.

If you do this right the hand never stops but continues onto the ball to be picked up.


Let me know how it goes. :dancing:
Message: Posted by: Turk (May 20, 2003 10:46PM)
Great idea, Pete. However, do I understand you correctly that you have two loads now under the cup (the big load and the regular ball)? If so, do you then reveal the small ball (clipping the big load to stay under the cup) and then immediately set the cup back down?

Thanks for the idea.

Message: Posted by: Shadow Dancer (May 27, 2003 05:42AM)
I've found that a good set of large metal cups allways does the "trick"! The audience loves 'em and u can always hand them out (that u can do with just about any cups, but oh well!).
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (May 27, 2003 03:56PM)
No no, you don't Have Two under a cup... You lift the cup and reveal the small ball. As your load hand comes forward you toss the load into the cup and pick up the small ball from the table... THEN you set the cup down and vanish or put small ball in your pocket.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (May 27, 2003 04:03PM)
Right, by the time you are picking up the small ball with the hand that formerly held the final load, you have already "tossed" the final load into the waiting cup. Good idea, Pete. What about the angles though? I'll have to give it a try and see for myself.
Message: Posted by: cfrye (May 27, 2003 05:00PM)
Well, the arm holding the cup will shield folks to that side, the cup will shield the folks in front, and closing the shoulder of your loading arm will bring in your body and help shield the folks on the open side. With proper focus on our part, the audience should be looking at the small ball on the table. Because your load hand will have moved forward to pick up the ball several times before in the routine, the move is all but invisible.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (May 27, 2003 07:02PM)
Right, Cfrye. The other thing is that we can always "cheat" the loading hand so that it actually goes to the cup during its journey to the small ball. Sort of the way a crash link of the linking rings fools the eye. Or the way a wand vanish works so that no one believes that one hand ever got near the other. That way, there is no angle problem.
Message: Posted by: Jeff Dial (May 27, 2003 11:23PM)

In your May 20th post you said:

"To really do it, do not put the load item (I suggest for this a lime--it is dark and round--or a potato)."

From reading the rest of the description I assume you were intending to say to not put the load item in your pocket.

If you meant something else let us know. Thanks for the great tip.
Message: Posted by: RiffRaff (Jun 11, 2003 03:02PM)

A similar loading technique was published in The Books of Wonder. (I forget whom he credits for it's creation).

The difference in the Wonder method is that there are no pocket loads.
Message: Posted by: gary a (Jun 20, 2003 05:29PM)
Gazzo-Gary Animal cups have been improved and are also much cheaper direct from Gazzo and Gary Animals site.