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Larry Davidson
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Inner circle
Potomac, MD
5267 Posts

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Bob, here's the bottom-line in my opinion:

Q: Out of all of the gimmicked coins you know of, which one do you think is the most amazing to spectators?

A: None. Spectators don't experience a gimmick, they experience an effect you perform using a gimmick. A better question might have been, "Which effect do you perform that is most amazing to spectators that also uses a gimmicked coin?" My answer to that would be coins across to spectator's hand using a shell (and sleight of hand).

Q: Which coin do you think is the hardest trick to figure out if you were a magician, and didn't know the secret?

A: None. A gimmicked coin isn't a trick. A gimmicked coin is an end to a means (the trick or the effect). A better question might have been, "Which effect is the hardest for magicians to figure out that also uses a gimmicked coin?" If that's answerable, and I don't know that it is since a magician is not a magician is not a magician (different magicians have different levels of skill and knowledge), I couldn't answer it anyway because I don't perform for magicians, I perform for laymen.

My advice is that you focus on effect and let that drive method (gimmicks, sleight of hand, or both.)

Larry D.
Scott F. Guinn
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"Great Scott!" aka "Palms of Putty" & "Poof Daddy G"
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Larry's last post hits the nail right on the head. Gimmicked coins can produce excellent magic, shoddy magic, or no magic at all, depending on the person using them and the routines and presentation in which he is putting them to use. Perhaps your question might have been better phrased, "What do you think are some of the strongest routines using (this particular) gaff?," or "Which coin gaffs do you feel are the most versatile?" or "What is your favorite or most used gaff?" or "Which gaff do you feel gives the most bang for the buck as far as applications for the average magician?"

Gaffs, in and of themselves, are nothing. My coin work relies on gaffs to a great extent, largely because I am unable to do difficult sleight of hand due to arthritic and inflexible hands. However, a couple of my strongest routines use no gaffs at all, and no sleights more difficult than a thumb palm or finger palm! Why are they strong? Because of the routining, construction, psychology, audience management and presentation. In short, because of what the audience perceives is happening. This is what makes a routine good or bad, whether it uses gaffs or not.

There are already topics in existence that discuss the questions I've posed above, but in short, I believe that an expanded shell and a copper/silver coin are probably the most versatile gaffs available (for me personally), and the number of routines you can do with them are very many compared to their comparatively low price.
"Love God, laugh more, spend more time with the ones you love, play with children, do good to those in need, and eat more ice cream. There is more to life than magic tricks." - Scott F. Guinn
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Harris Deutsch
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Gimmicks are indeed a means and not an end.

Sometimes they help with the journey.

Mixing them in and out of a routine can add the right pizzazz.

Although I don't usually work to or for other magicians it is occasionally fun to ring in a C/S or ES with other peoples coins.

It is sort of like adding a duplicate or stranger card to a layman or magician’s deck.

Enjoy the journey,

If any of you coin-guys come through the Kansas City area give me an email.

Anyone know yet if they are going to the Society of American Magicians Annual Convention - St.Louis, Missouri - United States of America in July of 2004?

I hope to make it this year.

Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
music, magic and marvelous toys
Bob Parnez
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I like gaffs, and your spectators don't need to know that they are gimmicked. Some people that have been exposed to some magic tricks might not be impressed if you use a gaff on them, because they might know about the gaff.

I know earlier I said gaffs aren't that impressive, but I was just agreeing, *cough, cough, good excuse, cough*.
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