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Inner circle
St. Louis, MO
1044 Posts

Profile of Tortuga
All anyone on this forum is doing with regard to this issue is guessing. Vernon isn't here to answer. Having said that, it is time to deal with some facts. First, here is what the book says on page 70...

"Many magicians who acquire this book will first search the pages
to find this secret, as it has become somewhat of a legend. The title
has intrigued card enthusiasts ever since Dai Vernon let it be known
that perfect "Strippers" could be made quickly with the aid of something
which is obtainable in any bathroom."

The book says perfect strippers, not half-arsed attempts at making strippers. It also doesn't say anything about the mechanic having any special tool like the "stripper plate".
In fact it describes a process involving multiple steps that are relatively involved. And the book also opines that the sort of places this Mexican gambler frequented would undoubtedly have broken windows. How's that for a nice touch?

There exists in magic a number of stories that don't seem to add up. This could be one of them. I don't know and Vernon isn't here to speak to it.
It's never crowded on the extra mile....
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Inner circle
St. Louis, MO
1044 Posts

Profile of Tortuga
Here's the actual procedure...

"So if the reader wishes to make his own "Strippers" in the Mexican
manner, the first essential is a piece of glass with a jagged edge.
Take about one third of the pack and press one long side down
firmly on a table or other flat surface. Bevel the cards to the left and
rub the glass along half the length of the upper long sides; bevel the
cards to the right and rub the glass along the same surface, then repeat
the process with the cards held upright. Now shuffle the cards, hold
them upright on the table again and treat the same surface once more.
Treat each third of the pack in the same way, assemble the pack, shuffle
the cards and rub the glass along the same half of the long sides. Any
roughening of the edges of the cards can be smoothed away with the
polished surface of the glass.

A knack has to be acquired to treat the cards quickly and to obtain
the necessary finish, but packs prepared in this manner have passed
close scrutiny by experienced card players."
It's never crowded on the extra mile....
Merc Man
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Inner circle
NUNEATON, Warwickshire
2727 Posts

Profile of Merc Man
Indeed that is what the book says; not what Mr England refers to, in relation to just half a dozen cards being stripped.

As you also correctly state, there is no mention of any other apparatus (such as clamping devices/stripper tools) being used.

However, I would really like to see Mr. England create a full 'pack of perfect strippers' with just a piece of broken, jagged glass, to prove me completely wrong; and that the Vernon story AND method holds true - which was actually my initial point, that appears to have annoyed him somewhat.

I have been a Dai Vernon fan for decades - as many of my posts on here over the years will prove. However, there are a few instances whereby I've read Vernon's words, or listened to him talk during the Revelations Series (that I bought back in the days of videos) and thought to myself "hang on, you are just talking complete and utter Bo!!@c£s now mate".
Barry Allen

Chan Canasta - so much achieved with so very little.
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Inner circle
St. Louis, MO
1044 Posts

Profile of Tortuga
Legends are what they are. And gamblers, by their very nature are less than honest folk. In the end, it doesn't really matter a whit whether the story is accurate or made up out of whole cloth. Some will believe and some won't.
You can admire Vernon and still suspect that at times he was guilty of hyperbole. No heroes can withstand intense scrutiny and come away unscathed. We're all human after all.
It's never crowded on the extra mile....
Eoin OHare
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New user
80 Posts

Profile of Eoin OHare
I have been working on a little device that was inspired directly from the bathroom strippers story. It makes N strippers. 1mm thick knife steel, extremely hard and fits on a keychain. It is getting closer to production but I recently posted a prototype image to my instagram. The oval file area stands slightly proud of the discs surface. Because it is oval it naturally forms a notch shape which you can vary in width by revolving the disc. Max notch is 40mm wide, min notch is 15mm wide. Depth depends on strokes.
Designer & Maker of The Stripper Jig Card Trimmer & Pinpoint Pegger
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Las Vegas, NV
1709 Posts

Profile of JasonEngland
That is what the book says, but it's wrong and have no idea why. I can only guess. Most likely it's because Ganson wanted to describe something that a magician would be able to understand. So he describes a "normal" wedgie deck of magic strippers. But cheaters didn't use normal, wedge-shaped strippers. They never have. Why? Because the mere acts of dealing and handling cards turn them around and make the entire deck a hopeless mess. They're almost useless at a card game as any cheater can tell you.

Cheaters would have used a belly cut (which you probably COULDN'T make in a bathroom with a piece of glass) or a negative cut which CAN be made very quickly using only a small number of cards and a file, piece of sandpaper, fingernail (see: Giorgio) or perhaps even a piece of glass.

You guys can believe what you want, but both Charlie Miller and Ed Marlo have backed Vernon's story in print. Why would Marlo, who had a known, mildly (sometimes not so mildly) antagonistic relationship with Vernon for decades essentially back him on this unless it was true? Incidentally, Marlo relates the much more likely way a cheater would use the concept, by describing the creation of negative strippers in Ireland's Trick Talk, Vol. 1, No. 10 (1958). Charlie backed the Vernon story (and mentions an even weirder method of making them) in Ibidem, if my memory is correct.

Additionally, the Cervon Notebooks (dating from the mid-1960s) detail the proper way bathroom strippers were made and references the Inner Secrets mention. Bruce got it right, and straight from Vernon's mouth while sitting with him a few years after the Ganson book was published. The illustration in the Cervon notebooks clearly shows a piece of glass making NEGATIVE strippers.

I'm not sure why you seem to think the story of "bathroom strippers" is forever tied ONLY to that one write-up in Inner Secrets. I agree that that story (as written) is unlikely. But you just assume Vernon is making up a story? So why change the story to the VERY LIKELY version in the Cervon Notebooks 6 years later? Why did the details suddenly match up quite nicely with something cheaters actually have done and why suddenly is it being confirmed by both friend (Miller) and foe (Marlo)?

It is just possible there's more to this story than the Ganson write-up?
Eternal damnation awaits anyone who questions God's unconditional love. --Bill Hicks
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Special user
i have nothing to say about my
503 Posts

Profile of disgruntledpuffin

If you're just going to march in here with your facts and calmly stated well thought out arguments based on sound logic, no one will talk to you.

Mr. Bones
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Veteran user
323 Posts

Profile of Mr. Bones
"Bathroom Strippers"? ... It's humerous when folks make definitive statements about what are essentially quick'n'dirty n-strippers, and when those statements demonstrate a complete lack of knowledge as to how such cards are fabricated, what cards are hit, why those cards are hit, and how they're then used at the table.

But rather than knowledgeably examine the process (as Jason has done, and shared in detail above), it's probably best to simply say "nothing to see here", "Vernon Shmernon", and move on back to talking about a full deck of store bought wedge strippers ... more in keeping with the speed of some folks in this thread.

(And when Eoin releases his machined equivalent of a "piece of glass", it must be folks imaginations at work watching it quickly preparing a few n-stripped cards ... in the bathroom or elsewhere.)
Mr. Bones
"Hey Rube"!
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New user
21 Posts

Profile of DevGuy
On May 31, 2022, JasonEngland wrote:

I'm not sure why you seem to think the story of "bathroom strippers" is forever tied ONLY to that one write-up in Inner Secrets.

It's because he's not very well-read.
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