By: Dan Watkins
In early 2002, I put a few videos up on the website of me manipulating coins and demonstrating some of my routines. The videos generated more interest than I could ever have expected. I received a great many emails asking if specific routines were available in printed form.
I have released these routines simply because enough of my website readers have asked me to. This manuscript is written, edited, designed, and photo edited by myself.
The manuscript contains 24 double sided pages, is comb bound 8.5"x11" in size, with 44 full color, high resolution, digitally edited photographs that detail the inner workings of the routines. You can see a sample of the manuscript in the animated image to the left. All of the backgrounds of the pictures were digitally removed to give the pictures a clean "illustrated" look. The manuscript surpasses the image quality of most magic books. The color manuscript is printed on a professional print machine. (The color version is available exclusively through this website, the versions sold through magic dealers are a few dollars cheaper and contain grayscale images).
I know many of you read this website for the reviews of coin magic material that comes into the market. I will attempt to shine the same spotlight on this manuscript as I do on other material, giving you a good representation of what is provided.
The manuscript is intended for those already familiar with basic coin magic. It is assumed that you know basic sleight of hand, concealments, false transfers, standard grips, etc.
Provided is a discussion on three less common utility sleights that are used in some of the routines, and the teaching of seven coin routines. The coin routines are broken up into 3 sections: (1) The effect, (2) The setup, and (3) The method.
Let us take a look at what is taught:
The Back Thumb Palm Retention Pass: As the name implies, it is a Retention Pass of a coin, while secretly moving the coin directly into Back Thumb Palm. The move allows for a convincing flash of the coin going into one hand, followed by the palm empty show of the other hand. It is not as natural looking as other types of false transfers, however, combining a coin pass with an immediate palm empty display of the original hand is very convincing. It will take some practice to do this pass quickly, additionally due to angle considerations, this technique cannot be used while surrounded; your audience must be in front of you. The technique can be seen in the web video of Coinvanish Trio. Provided is a one page teaching with 4 images.
The Middle Finger Backclip: This is a one page discussion on the use of the Middle Finger Backclip. One of the routines in this manuscript utilizes the Backclip. Generally the Backclip and Tenkai Pinch can be used interchangeably. I provide an overview (and 3 images) of both techniques. Also referenced are readily available materials to provide an in depth teaching of the Backclip.
Wiped Clean: is a hand washing technique that shows both sides of your hands empty when they are not. Some of the routines in this manuscript use this technique. It can also be seen in the Coinvanish Trio web video. I provide a one page overview (and 3 images) of the technique as well as resources where to find an in depth teaching of it.
Coinvanish Trio: This routine can be viewed in the web
video here. The hands are
apparently shown empty. One coin magically appears in the left hand. The coin
is tossed into the air and disappears, only to suddenly reappear on the palm
up right hand. This coin is placed at the left fingertips. The arms cross in
front of the body and a second coin appears at the right fingertips. The
second coin is placed with the first coin at the left fingertips. The right
hand reaches out and produces a third coin from thin air. The third coin is
placed with the other two at the left fingertips and the coins are momentarily
The right hand takes one coin and places it inside the left hand. The right hand then openly takes the two remaining coins as the left hand "crumbles" its coin away. The left hand takes one coin and the right hand retains one coin; both coins are cleanly shown at the fingertips. The left hand crumbles its coin away, leaving only one coin remaining. This last coin is placed again into the left hand; it immediately vanishes. Both hands are apparently shown empty at the end.
The routine originally was longer and had more vanish/reproduction phases. The more I got to thinking about it, it was just repetition for the sake of repetition (repetitiously speaking). The effect is that 3 coins very magically appear, and magically disappear one at a time. So that is what I streamlined it to. Because of some of the moves used in this routine, you will need your spectators to be in front of you for proper angles.
It may or may not be a complete surprise that to create productions and vanishes as clean as what is shown in my web video, and to do it in short sleeves, it requires gaff coins. I provide a very clear image of the gaff coins needed and where to get them. It is a very nice quality set of gaffs to own, but be warned, custom silver dollar gaff coins are expensive. This routine may inspire you to acquire a set, and to come up with your own uses of the gaff (there would be many uses for an inventive person). You may own half of the gaff already, so it might not be too bad of a monetary hit.
Sleight of Elbow: A coin appears from your left elbow, vanishes into your right, appears out of your left, and then vanishes completely into your right elbow.
This routine is a simple impromptu one coin routine that uses your elbows as the focal point for where and when magic takes place. This focus serves as excellent misdirection for what is really going on. The final vanish of the coin fools the pants off of people, especially when done in short sleeves. It is one of those quickie routines that astonishes. It can also be combined with Coinvanish Trio to create a triple production and vanish into the elbows.
King Midas Spellbound: This routine can be viewed at my web video here. Four coins are displayed: A gold coin, a silver coin, a copper coin, and a brass coin. The coins are about a silver dollar size. The gold coin is picked up and it is explained that it is made out of gold from King Midas. "Everything he touched turned to gold. However, it was not a natural gold; it was a very unstable gold. If I touch another metal, the gold takes on the attributes of that other metal." The gold coin is held by the fingertips of the left hand. The right hand touches the silver coin, and then touches the gold coin; the gold coin turns silver. The right hand touches the copper coin, and then touches the gold (now silver) coin; the coin turns copper. The right hand touches the brass coin, and then touches the gold (now copper) coin; the coin turns to brass. The magician blows on the right hand to blow away the metal molecules. The right hand touches the gold (now brass) coin, and the coin returns to its original gold state. The gold coin is dropped back to the other 3 coins. Everything can be examined.
This routine just fries people. It is so squeaky clean looking. My focus when I created this routine was to create a quadruple spellbound coin change that ONLY uses the traditional hand-covers-a-coin-held-in-Spellbound-position move. In other words, the coin is held ONLY in left hand Spellbound position. The right hand ONLY covers and then uncovers the coin to create the change. Coins are not placed from one hand to another; the covering hand movement looks the same from beginning to end. It seems impossible that that many changes could occur with the hands holding one configuration, especially since the covering hand is shown EMPTY after the changes.
Having the silver, copper, and brass coins in plain view allows the spectator to know what all the coins look like in advance, so there is instant recognition when the coin held in Spellbound changes colors. There is no ambiguity as to what is occurring.
This happens to be the most expensive coin routines I own. If you work with coins, you will know that it is not easy to find 4 distinct colored coins in a silver dollar size, not to mention having a gaffed set of those very coins. The solution? Again, Todd Lassen. Some may own the gaff set used, but many do not. The gold coin I use, I added to the gaff set, and it is the real deal. The value of it alone is more expensive than the gaff set. Obviously, one does not need to use a real gold coin. There are cheaper alternatives. I do provide a way to acquire the necessary coins and gaff that will probably be more agreeable to most budgets. They are however in half dollar size and may require some minor user modifications.
Lightning Copper/Silver: This routine can be viewed at my web video here. Two coins are shown: a copper coin and a silver coin. The silver coin is placed into the left hand, the copper coin directly into the right; the hands do not touch. Suddenly, the right hand is shown to have the silver coin, and then the left hand is opened to show the copper coin.
This is a really simple, very quick, and extremely visible coin trick. It plays out exactly as it reads. I often use this as a finale to a copper silver transposition routine when someone asks me to "do that again". It uses no gaff coins. It only uses the coins the spectator sees, one silver, and one copper. The routine is extremely easy for a spectator to follow. The routine seems so clean and fair. The transposing sleights uniquely happen while the heat is "on" the hands which is a bit atypical for coin routines, but in this instance, it works like a charm. This sleight is unique in that it involves no movement of the fingers of either hand. When done properly it is imperceptible to your spectator. This routine is best used for a few close spectators.
Penetrating Okito & Beyond: A sit down web video variation of this routine can be viewed here (the actual write-up is constructed as a stand up routine). A lid is placed on an empty Okito box; the box is displayed top and bottom and is shaken to prove that it is empty. The box is shaken a second time and suddenly the audience can hear coins rattling inside. The lid is removed, four coins are dumped out, returned to the box, and the lid is replaced. The box is placed on the back of your hand, and the coins penetrate the box and hand, leaving the box empty. The coins are put back in the box and placed on the back of your hand, this time the box and lid penetrate the hand leaving the coins on top!
I have always enjoyed the coins-thru-the-hand, Okito-box-thru-the-hand routine. I think it is one of the most shocking bits of magic you can do with an Okito box. This routine uses a gaffed Okito box called a BO Box. The BO Box set is reviewed here on the website. If you have not bought a BO Box, this routine will teach you what the BO Box is, so you can decide if you wish to acquire one. I would like to thank Howard Balthus from www.thetrickery.com for his permission to divulge the workings of the BO Box set in this set of notes. You can purchase a BO Box set through the aforementioned website.
Jumbolaya: A version of this routine can be viewed in my web video here. After a one coin flurry, a coin grows to a jumbo size, appears and disappears, penetrates body parts, and magically disappears once again.
Many coin routines end with a startling production of a jumbo coin. Jumbolaya simply continues the magic with the jumbo coin. Jumbo coin manipulations have very bad angles – your audience has to be in front of you; anywhere else will usually ruin the illusion. I do not teach the one coin flurry I start with in my web video. What is taught is how the jumbo coin is stolen and brought into play, and how to do the various manipulations to perform the Jumbo coin flurry segment of the routine. If you watch the web video closely there is a point where you may come to think two jumbo coins at play. If you watch even closer, if you think there is two coins, you probably cannot tell where the heck the other one comes from. You will find out inside the manuscript!
Double Take Transposition: A copper coin and a silver coin are shown. A spectator takes the silver coin. The magician magically makes the coins trade places so that the spectator now has the copper, and the magician has the silver. Both coins are placed into the spectator's hand and her hand is closed into a fist. The magician reaches in through the thumbhole of the spectator's hand and takes out the silver coin. Once again, the magician causes the coins to trade places, leaving the magician with copper and the spectator with silver. The coins can be examined.
Both of the phases in this routine are not original with me. When I read the two separate effects it dawned on me that they could be combined to create two transpositions in a spectator's fist. That really is the whole point of the routine. A coin is transposed from your hand to a spectator's closed fist. This in itself is shocking for a spectator. So what do you do? You do it again! Magic in a spectators hand is great, it makes them part of the magic, and gives it much more impact. I liken this effect to a one-two knockout punch that will leave your spectator reeling.
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