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Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
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Profile of spfranz
I use several different decks but to the audience they all look the same. In other words, I have 4 decks of red Bikes that get brought in and out during the course of a close up show. Each is stacked for a different effect.

I make use of a joke that Doc Eason uses. My first card effect is Solid Deception. At the end, I turn the box over and there's a big sticker on it that says "TV Magic Cards". Get's a little chuckle. For the next card trick, I bring out the box, turn it around and it has a "Regular Deck" sticker on it. This box also has a couple of rubber bands wrapped around it (different colors) for later rubber band effects. Each of my 4 regular decks is prepared the same way. I don't ever tell the audience that it's the same deck but try to lead them down that path.
Never ask a dog to watch your food.
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Profile of MagicalChris
I am now going to stick FOR SURE with normal poker 808 cards.

I did the thing where I cover the card with my hand and it covers it so I am good.

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Profile of Tilt
Good to hear Chris. I think you will find that over time you will be just as comfortable with poker size cards as with bridge size cards.

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Profile of DaveVegas
I have very small hands and have always used poker sized Bikes, BUT it is easier, and I can make faster progress with bridge sized cards.

It's not to do with practice so much (even someone with big hands who doesn't practice will be found out), but there is very little margin for error.

With bridge sized cards, you get a little slack at least.

Still, I mostly use poker Bikes anyhow and good misdirection!
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Profile of N14
Having small hands can even be a positive thing. As long as you learned your sleights.

Think of two guys, one with big hands and one with small hands. If they both would be doing sleights, the spectators would be more suspicious about the guy with big hands, since they might think, he has such big hands, he is probably palming cards.

About using bridge size cards. I'm living in Holland and most of the pro's use bridge size cards. Even in casino's they use bridge size cards. At home people will have bridge size cards. I use poker size cards..

First thing is said already. If you can handle poker size cards, you can also handle bridge size cards. Not visa versa.

When I perform most people know of the existence of gaffed decks, so it doesn't matter if you use one or not, most of them will think you're using a gaffed one anyway.

My audience doesn't really care about the cards I use because there are just so many cards on the market, it's impossible to know all of them. Every major beer company has his own deck of cards. (and there are a lot of beer companies here in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany.) Not talking about all the other cards. They never questioned me about the size of the cards.

Anyway, if you would like to use bridge size cards. But think there are no trick decks on the market. You're wrong.
Try Piatnik cards, Austria. They have basically all the cards you'll need. Double backs, (double) blanks, double face, ESP, rainbow, 123 (numbers), etc. etc.

Hope I made my point(s)
Rolando Santos
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Atlanta, Ga.
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Profile of Rolando Santos
I use a wide range of cards and styles, since my day job takes me on the road a lot.

For me what deck I use and the size of the deck has more to do with a particular story line or plot than whether people will think I have gimmicked cards.

If the story line is good enough they won't be worried about the deck.

However, having said that - I DO NOT switch between bridge and poker decks during a peformance. I have to have a really good reason for that to happen.

I Do switch as need be between sizes in packet tricks because the audience understands that it is a different effect.

When I travel I try to use at least one deck that is customarily used in that country.

In England, I use Waddington Number 1's.
In Spain Fournier 505's,
In Africa Protean 501's,
In Turkey, I buy the deck everyone buys at the local store (the cardboard like non slick decks are miserable for magic, but a neccesary evil).

I also make sure I practice with the deck for each country prior to the visit so I am comfortable.

Two more points --- In general, I practice in poker size ( even though I have small hands) that way no matter what card size I use or need I can do the effect. I also have found if I can do it reasonably well with a poker deck, a bridge deck is a snap.

Conversely, if I am having trouble learning a move I will use a bridge deck because it is easier to master a concept and then I work my way into using a poker deck. (I am not proud, if it works, I use it)

Secondly, I have never ever had anyone call me on the size of the card. I think that's true for me because as part of my patter the back design or cards are usually explained away.

Finally, more and more places seem to be selling bridge size Bicycle backs. That gives you the best of both worlds.

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Profile of M.P.D.
I am from the U.S. and I am now living in Poland and performing all over. I can find poker sized decks here but they are imported and expensive so I use bridge sized cards and I really feel sneaky when I use them because it is so easy to get rid of them or do just about anything with them.

As far as gimmicks go with bridge sized deck I feel lucky because I can make almost any kind of card gimmick (acrobatic, sliding parts etc.) but my advice is, if you cannot make them, then have them specially made for you, you can look up Don England, Dave Solomon, Kevin Kelly and so many others. Smile
Garrett Nelson
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Profile of Garrett Nelson
Or you can send them to Poland!

I use poker sized just because, as was mentioned just now, just about all gaffs are in that size. I do a lot of shuffle work, and I like to keep a constant stiffness (the lack of width makes bridge decks feel different).

If you spend a lot of time on riffle-stacking or the like, I would go with poker sized. They have more flexibility and allow you to get much more "feel" with the thumbs.

I think everyone should keep a bridge sized deck around. If nothing else, just to coax your ego with how quick and smooth you can pass with one Smile
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Profile of DaveVegas
On 2002-01-23 15:42, Tilt wrote:
I find that the small hands excuse is usually used by people who don't like to practice. Why would you be into magic if you don't like to practice?


What utter nonsense! Ever tried running in a pair of shoes that don't fit? Sorry, but I have very small hands and practice a great deal, and using poker sized cards does make moves more difficult to achieve; try using a tarot deck and do your moves with it, see if it's just as easy.


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