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Jonathan Townsend
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Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27183 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
Ideals presume contextual and aesthetic issues which have yet to be raised in magic. These come down to a few basic questions which are important to any theatrical production

What are the coins to the audience? Money?
What are the coins to the performer (in character/persona)?
i) Money in live context?
ii) A coin collection?
iii) Magical things that only look like coins?

At the very bottom of the considerations is the mechanical or "method" stuff. To use props of a certain size ONLY because they are easier to do sleights is not so good in theatrical terms. At the very least the audience may get the feeling that the coins are somehow involved in the mechanics of the production (the effects offered) and with that, regardless of using sleights or mechanical methods the magic is lost.

Some of this is alluded to in Our Magic. Also keep in mind that those who made a name for themselves doing the "miser's dream" were producing coins of the realm at that time and usually not special things they went to shops to buy. Even those who produced self-publicity props were aware that the effect was different when the items went from MONEY to merely "coins".

And so, to keep discussions on a productive track, I suggest considering what the coins are supposed to be to the character you present and go from there.

As a side note, consider how odd it would be to do this stuff with real gold coins and why nobody does this. To my sensibilities it is very awkward to take out one's money and play with it in public and ask others to appreciate one's cleverness in doing so.

Have you considered that a time traveler or a character IN CONTEXT from a hundred years ago might well produce silver dollars as money. Smile all the coins I've dropped here
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Inner circle
Toronto, Canada
1278 Posts

Profile of rutabaga

The "real money" vs "Magical things that only look like coins" [which includes stories one might weave around the magic] is probably the key consideration in what to use for a given effect IMHO.

But here's some further detail on my thinking with this [OK, I know I'm new and may be reinventing the coin magic wheel!]

1. Coins should suit hand size - if you can't handle the props, you don't have an effect!

2. Coins should suit style of magic - seriously, pennies won't wash from 10 feet away.

3. Coins should suit effect - this is where the choice of "real" vs "magic" comes in... what is the story behind the magic?

3. Coins should facilitate sleights required in above - again, if you can't handle the sleights you don't have an effect!

4. Coins should be available in necessary gaffs - if required, obviously [unless you have $$$ for custom work!]
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Inner circle
martinsburg west virginia
1688 Posts

Profile of mystre71
Rutabaga, If you like Walking Liberty halves, then you should work with them (as long as their soft). I use WLs myself the edges are worn,and I use a lot of Kainoa's EG work. It took some time to get use to them,but happy with the results. So, although it might take more time to work with what you like, I feel it will be worth it in the end.

Walk around coin box work check it out here
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Inner circle
NJ, U.S.
6112 Posts

Profile of Jaz
My suggestion is to practice with coins that are NOT heavily milled.
Get good with these and all the rest are a piece of cake.
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Inner circle
Toronto, Canada
1278 Posts

Profile of rutabaga
Thanks Jaz... that has always been in the back of my mind! Like most sleights at the beginning I suppose, it seems such an un-natural way to hold a coin. Back to practice, practice, practice!
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Special user
New Jersey
502 Posts

Profile of Rindfleisch
On 2006-07-12 08:21, Daegs wrote:
And that is super impressive joe, given that they weren't minted until 1892 =P

I *cannot* imagine doing most EG stack work with uncirculated coins, it would be too noisey, loading coins on and off of the stack and transfering the stack around.

You could certainly do *some* moves with kennedy's, but if you are doing CoE stuff then you'll want soft coins that don't scrape when sliding around.

Soft coins are where its at, at least imho.

Sorry litte typo 1908
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Curtis Kam
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same as you, plus 3 and enough to make
3498 Posts

Profile of Curtis Kam
Actually, Barbers are a thing of the past. Literally and figuratively....

Kainoa has been sited in Hawai'i using Victorian Half Crowns. They are slightly bigger than halves and have milled edges.

He is working his way slowly, but earnestly toward dollars.....what a guy....
Is THAT a PALMS OF STEEL 5 Banner I see? YARRRRGH! Please visit The Magic Bakery
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Regular user
102 Posts

Profile of Quartin
Rutabaga, I have small hands (20cm from thumb to pinky) and recently moved from halves to dollars and I feel that some moves (Kainoa´s technique) are easier to do with bigger coins. The big diameter shorten the trips. The coins are more stable on the grip. The audiovisual is much much greater.
I worned them very much,to a point where the design is still recognizable but lived the edges intact. By worning them you get silence and a stack of 4 morgans becomes much more thinner.
all the best,

ps, after 1 month of practice with the morgans I tried the libertys just to feel the diference...what a disaster coins where falling all over the place
Jonathan Townsend
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Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27183 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
Victorian Half Crowns are a thing of the past too. Anyone remember Queen Victoria? Yup that was back in 1890-1904 or so. Memory fades after a while. I use the Veiled Victoria's. Galloway seems to be using the young Victorias in his Ramsay Videos. all the coins I've dropped here
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Inner circle
United Kingdom
1156 Posts

Profile of jolyonjenkins
Not sure when half crowns stopped being made but they were in circulation up to the late 1960s with the current British Queen's head on, so at least in Britain they would be recognisable to anyone over 45.
Jolyon Jenkins
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