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Joshua Lozoff
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Inner circle
Chapel Hill, NC
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Hi there friends,

To build a card table, what sort of felt or velvet is generally used? Also, if my sub-surface is wood, is there some sort of cushion or padding that is put down first, under the finished material?

Are there other topics on this subject that I can read through?

Thanks,
Joshua Lozoff

joshualozoff.com
ClintonMagus
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Southwestern Southeast
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I have made tables using the felt and velvet that is available at almost any fabric shop. My favorite material, however, is automobile head liner material. It has a built-in padding and is available in many colors at auto upholstery shops.

Amos McCormick
Things are more like they are today than they've ever been before...
KenW
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I second the automobile head liner! Don't forget to ask for think padding when you buy the liner. The padding comes in think and medium and is seperate from the liner. Do as the pro's do....DON'T SPRAY GLUE THE LINER! Just glue the edges only when you make the table. This gives you a flexible surface that can be changed with ease.
Good luck.
Say, Anyone have a suggestion for someone to build me a close-up table without spending a ton of cash? I only want the table built. I can finish it with the liner and padding.
Any suggestions? Anyone?
Thanks,
Ken W.
KenW
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Wow, my fingers typed a miss-spelled word: THINK is suppose to read: Thin..LOL!
Joshua Lozoff
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Chapel Hill, NC
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Thanks for the clarification. I didn't know if you meant thin or thick.

Anyway, are you able to stretch it taut enough to have a tight top with no wrinkles when you only glue the corners? And what sort of glue to use?

Thanks,
Joshua Lozoff

joshualozoff.com
Michael Baker
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Eternal Order
Near a river in the Midwest
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Use a spray adhesive that is meant for foam. A good fabric store will have that.

Headliner material is good stuff and you can get it already bonded to the foam backing at Hancock Fabrics (if you have one nearby). It is generally about 1/4" thick. You may get lucky and find a supply house in your area that carries automotive upholstery fabrics. Regardless of the material that you use, you will want to somehow deal with the raw edges. These can either be wrapped under the table top and tacked or stapled in place or a frame-like edging can be used to seal the edges in.

~michael
~michael baker
The Magic Company
KenW
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Mr. Baker is 100% Right On!

Now....anyone know of where to get a decent table that I can finish myself?
Or maybe someone who builds a good table?
Thanks,
KW
Bryan Gilles
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Northern California
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I'm in the midst of releasing a close-up presentation table to the magic community in mid-March. You'll be able to purchase it throught RNT2.com's website! I'll keep everyone updated...

-Bryan Gilles
billfromoregon
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Bryan - Please let us know when this is ready. I'm looking forward to it. Best of luck -

Bill
RiserMagic
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Quote:
On 2006-11-29 23:17, Michael Baker wrote:
<snip> These can either be wrapped under the table top and tacked or stapled in place or a frame-like edging can be used to seal the edges in.

~michael

Michael;
On most of the close up tables I make I use an insert type of top. The fabric goes onto this insert and is wrapped under at the edges. The insert lowers into the depression on the actual table so that the padded insert's top is level with the wood trim edges. The insert screws (special design) into position from underneath. There are other features that I will not describe here. This gives a very clean professional look to the finished product and is the method used by many table makers. The covering can easily be changed as required.
Jim
Joshua Lozoff
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Chapel Hill, NC
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Joshua Lozoff

joshualozoff.com
Michael Baker
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Eternal Order
Near a river in the Midwest
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Joshua,

Without actually having a piece of it in my hands to prove me wrong, I'd say that's the stuff.

Another option which I use myself when I want a padded surface, but with no spring to it... Cotton batting that comes in rolled sheets can be used in double layers to give a very nice pad underneath another fabric used for the surface, i.e., velvet, billiard felt, etc. use spray mount to secure the layers of batting to the wood backing. Lay the fabric on top and wrap the edges underneath. Stretch tightly as you secure underneath with tacks or staples. The fabric is not glued down. If only the one surface is ever to show that may be sufficient. If you wish a reversible top, or otherwise a finished underside, I have other options.

Jim,

Great idea on the insert! I like how that solves the issues of wrapping the surface fabric without worrying about it over-extending the trim's overlap underneath.

I can see definite advantages to having the surface level with the edge trim, but I also have a need for a raised edge at times. Perhaps a shimming system between the layers when level is the call?

I can see T-nuts and machine screws working well to pull it all together.

~michael
~michael baker
The Magic Company
Joshua Lozoff
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Chapel Hill, NC
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Thanks for all the tips. I do happen to have an auto upolstery place nearby, but I think I'll give velvet (or billiard felt) a try with batting. I'll be putting cherry trim around the sides, so it's okay for it to wrap around, but I'm a little concerned with the underside being ugly if I tack the velvet to the bottom...
Joshua Lozoff

joshualozoff.com
kaytracy
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Central California
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If one is interested in a leather top, the folks at Nappa Hide house < http://www.hidehouse.com> have from time to time, deerskin backed with a light foam. Not sure of the intended use, but we use for padded cases for instruments and other delicate things. Nice colors, and a warm feel with a very nice hand despite the foam.
Kay
Kay and Tory
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RiserMagic
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Quote:
On 2006-11-30 18:27, Michael Baker wrote:
<snip>
I can see definite advantages to having the surface level with the edge trim, but I also have a need for a raised edge at times. Perhaps a shimming system between the layers when level is the call?

I can see T-nuts and machine screws working well to pull it all together.

~michael

Michael;
Brass washers are used to level the covered top (I prefer leather - BTW). I have the capability to make the washers any thickness required - so this is an easy adjustment. There's a little more to the construction; but you have the idea.
Jim
RiserMagic
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Michael;
Here is an example of one of my table tops with a built in card holdout (knee operated with a common pencil) and the insert type of top.
http://www.jamesriser.com/Gambling/image50.gif
Note that this is shown as an example - not something to be copied and sold by others. I have even made these with built in coin servantes. The coin "vanishes" as it is picked up from the table. Several I have made have been gimmicked to the hilt!
Jim
Joshua Lozoff
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Chapel Hill, NC
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Jim,

Great point! I actually will need a coin servante in my table, and I am worried that if I put edge trip around the bacck side, even if it's not raised, there will be a sound as I move toward lapping (servane-ing) the coin. Is your version about putting the gap between the felt and the edge trim? And if so, is it okay for me to try and work that out for myself?

Also, for everyone, if the purpose of this table is for a stage piece, what dimensions do you recommend for the top, with the idea that I will have 2 spectators sitting at my sides? I actually have the option to bevel out the sides like this: ___/ so the specs are sitting slightly facing the audience instead of in profile. What do you all think?
Joshua Lozoff

joshualozoff.com
RiserMagic
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Joshua;
Yes, a 1/8" gap is large enough for coins. If you make the padded insert 1/8" - 1/4" higher than the wood table edging trim, the gap will barely be noticed - especially at stage distance. Go ahead and make one of these for yourself. I'm sure someone else will steal the idea to make and sell. Such are the ethics in magic. Let us see a picture of your finished table.

A bevel on the table top would be a good idea as it will give you more elbow room while working. For stage use you might want the long side toward you to be as long as 5 feet. I would think 4 foot would be a minimum.
Jim
Joshua Lozoff
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Chapel Hill, NC
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4-5 feet! That's a little longer than I was planning. That would seem to put the spectators at some distance from me. But it would be nice to have all the room.

Jim, I'm scared to make the gap just 1/8. If I have a coin flat under the flesh of my hand, like Shadow Coins, will it really fall into a slot that small if I bring my hand over the slot, or will I need to turn the coin vertical before I reach the slot?

Thanks again for all the advice.
Joshua Lozoff

joshualozoff.com
RiserMagic
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Joshua;
By making the near table edge longer (and table wider) you increase the viewing angles for the rest of the spectators - plus get elbow room. If you only want to increase the viewing angles, put the long table edge towards the spectators.

You will need the coin almost vertical to drop it into the slot. The wooden edging can be tapered to act as a sort of funnel if needed. I have even undercut the edging so the coin can be slanted slightly - reverse of a funnel shape.

Make up a sample setup with a couple pieces of plywood. All you need for testing slot size is a 1' x 2' mockup. Understand that the edge of the padding can be tapered too to help act like a funnel. But in my experiences, it can all be done by modifying the wooden edging's hidden profile. You may need to change your coin sleights to use such a table effectively. That's the difference between a pro and a hack. The pro will develop new sleights or handlings as required to do the effect and utilize the apparatus at hand. It's all doable (and has been done by others). You will just need to modify the slot several times and to put in a lot of practice time to make everything flow smoothly. Once you have the technique of using such a table mastered, you'll need to resist the temptation to overuse it!
Jim
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