I’ve written about my fascination with the coins to glass magic effect. One version that I’ve always likes is the Jack Hughes Visible Coins To Glass, or in the USA we tend to call it Bob Kline’s Copentro. That’s the version where the coins visually appear in a shot glass that’s covered by a larger glass.
There are other version of the trick where the glass held mouth up with your hand above the opening of the glass. The coins then “drop” into the glass from your hand. Here’s an example of this version of the trick:
The problem with the version with the handheld glass is that it’s pretty obvious to anyone that the coin came from your hand. The glass doesn’t really isolate where the coins are appearing. The glass does add a fun sound when the coin arrives and adds a prop which may make the trick play a little bit bigger. Both of those a great additions, but they are really aren’t additions to the magic effect. They don’t make it more amazing or really any different from a coins across that happens in the hands.
That’s why I think I really like the Hughes/Kline version where the cup is isolated. It is something more than an in the hands coins across.
Over the last 18ish months I’ve worked on several versions of the trick. One that I will probably never use is this one:
The video above is the more complete version of the one I posted back in January (see it here). I wanted to figure out not just how to get the coin into the shot glass, but how to make the whole thing work start to finish. I’m glad I did that and have that version of the trick out of my mind now…until I try to start to work on how to make multiple coins appear in the shotglass…
Last night I was walking my dog and was thinking about an amazing idea of my friend Bri Crabtree. She uses a green screen spot, which is a genius idea! My idea was to use it as an xray for a vanish. Here’s a rough idea of what I’m think of:
I’m thinking if I get a ping pong paddle that’s green on one side I can make it work. Show the non-green side that says “x ray” then flip it over, show the skeleton of my hand with the coin and d do the vanish.
It’s not the deepest mystery in the world, but it is fun!
I’m trying to decide if I’ve become an old curmudgeon, or if some other people are simply idiots and the internet is highlighting this. Recently in a facebook group someone was asking for a good way to vanish or produce a die. Anyone with basic knowledge of sleight of hand knows how to do this. I’m going to assume the original poster asked in case there was something strange that they had not thought of.
Then they get this response and you can see my response below it:
Am I being an old a$$shole…or does this the person who responded have no idea what they are talking about?
as far as I know a shuttle pass pretends to move a coin or coins from hand to hand. It is neither a production or a vanish. It may set you up for the production of vanish, but it’s neither of those*.
Why would you suggest a shuttle pass?
My only guess is you don’t know what you’re doing. This is why crowd sourcing your knowledge instead of going out and getting a working knowledge of sleight of hand hurts you. It feels like a short cut until you realize you’ve driving around the same block four times.
My advice is to go out and learn the basics and try to figure it out on your own, that way you won’t be chasing leads that have zero merit.
*Yes, I do understand that from a technical standpoint it’s both a production and a vanish to create the illusion of passing an object hand to hand, however to the audience it’s neither of those.
About a month ago I make a blog post about how a version of Copentro that I’d been thinking about for while and was finally working out. It was more of a coins to glass than Copentro. What I mean by that is in Copentro the coin appears in side a glass that’s covered in a glass.
Also I should note that what I’m calling Copentro is Jack Hughes Visible Coins to Glass. I grew up calling it Copentro due to Bob Kline marketing it as that.
I like the coins to glass that I’ve been doing, but something inside me wanted to make a coin appear inside a glass that was covered by a glass. Luckily it really didn’t take much to make that happen. Here’s what I came up with:
I think it captured the spirit of the Jack Hughes / Bob Kline effect. Unfortunately I can only do it with one coin
I made a cleaner video of the coin to cork trick, which I’m giving the title Corkage Fee. This is the title that was stuck in my head.
I cleaned up the handling’s timing a little bit and added some context to the switch of the cork. For a quick social media video, having the balance on the nose at the beginning is a better switch than a shuttle pass. An even better way would have been to start with a bottle of wine that I took the cork out of. I don’t really drink wine, so that’s not something I have kicking around.
One of the things that’s huge in magic right now are the tricks where the spectators at home follow along with what you do and you end up knowing what they are thinking of. I wrote about my thoughts on this recently, and you can read that blog post here. Basically I want to use add magic to the puzzle to make it more magical.
After the blog post, I wanted to come up with an original trick, with an original puzzle. The trick was going to use coins, so I went out a bought a 21 Cent Trick and a $1.35 Trick at my local magic shop. With these two sets added to the array of trick coins I already had at home, it would allow me a lot of options for the routine.
The premise I was going with was a coin would be selected and all of the coins would disappear. The problem I was having was with the sequence of the counting. There was too much of it.
I finally settled on using two pairs of coins, two pennies and two nickels. In the end they pick a nickel, and the other three coins disappear and there’s just a nickel left.
Right now I’m working on finishing up some videos for a client and I’m just over halfway finished. I had and idea for a little routine, I wanted to essentially do the Sucker Silk To Egg, but take it a bit further. If you’ve seen the lecture that I do for magicians, that’s the message of the lecture, take your magic a step further!
I remembered reading in a Karrell Fox book about a method for the Silk To Egg that he called Super Simple Silk-2-Egg. The was a great method for the Silk To Egg that got rid of the gimmicked egg, which then eliminated the switch of the real egg and the fake egg.
My next challenge was to figure out what direction further I wanted to take the trick. My original idea was to turn the silk to the egg, do the fake explanation and peel off the sticker. The ending would be the silk was then actually inside the egg! The problem with this is that the silk would really need to be signed and that doesn’t really work for a pre-recorded video.
With my original idea not going to work for this specific gig (but I may work on it for other shows), I kept thinking. Then I remembered a book I picked up in a discount magic bin for about a dollar. The book was Hatching by Nefesch, which is a signed coin in egg. This is an interesting effect as the coin is actually inside the egg with all off the egg goop when you crack the egg open.
The sequence of the routine was now starting to take shape. A coin will turn into a handkerchief, which then turns into an egg. At that point I’ll do the “sucker explanation”, and when it’s time to crack open the egg, the coin will come out of it.
It’s not the most amazing magic routine out there, but it definately taking the Silk To Egg to another place (not sure if it’s a good place).
After playing with the coin trick from yesterday’s blog post, it hit me that I could do something similar to Bob Kline’s Copentrotrick. If you’re not familiar with the trick you can see it here:
Essentially the difference is that Copentro has a base for the cup and then typically a stand the holds the coins to allow them to vanish. Using the coin vanish / production from yesterday (plus something else), I can now do the Copentro trick eliminating the base and stand.
Here’s a proof of concept video (nowhere near a final version):
The routine and the moves still need some practice, but I think it has the potential to be a solid little routine.
Over the last 5 or so years there have been a lot of “Omni” magic props put out. The basic idea behind the trick is that the prop you are using turns into glass, or clear plastic. A quick Google search shows that recently there have been Omni Pens, Omni Cellphones, Omni Coins, Omni Credit Cards, and more!
Here’s the thing, unless you have an amazing switch of the prop you’ve come up with , it’s lazy creativity. I think that Jerry Andrus and Danny Korem’sOmni Deck was ground breaking and still has a lot more going for it that most other Omni props are lacking. In most other Omni tricks, the magic trick is that the prop turns clear, that’s it. In the original Omni Deck, the clear deck is the kicker ending. You are turning the deck that’s been handled by the spectator clear. Now only that it happens in their hands and to all the cards except theirs!
Now let’s look at another old school Omni prop, the Silver Extraction coin trick. In this trick, someone holds a coin. You then pull the silver of the coin through the back of their hand and they end up holding a clear coin. What makes this trick good is that there’s another element to the trick beyond simply turning the prop clear. Also the prop turning clear is an obvious, but unexpected ending to the coin trick.
Before you put out an clear prop, think about what you are contributing to magic. Are you moving the art forward, or just making a clear prop?
In yesterday’s blog post, I mentioned it took a bit of work figuring out what to do with the penny in the trick where a penny changes into two silver dollars. The challenge was that the coin change happens immediately, however I need to keep the coin hidden for the whole routine. Based on the conditions I posted I can’t just ditch it as my hands need to remain in the frame. Adding to the problem is that I also have two coins finger palmed the entire routine (until the end).
The solution I came up with, which should have been pretty obvious was to attach attach a magnet to the penny as the silver dollars already have magnet in them. I took the penny shell from a Dime and Penny set and used teflon tape to hold the magnet.
I figured using a shell would allow the penny to sit flat on on the silver dollar. The flatter it sat, the less chance there would be for me to accidentally knock it off, and it won’t rattle as the coin moved.
The “penny solution” brings me back to something Nick Lewin always says, I love how elaborate this 30 second coin routine has become!