Milling A Coin

Effect: The performer shows two large copper coins (perhaps old English pennies) and places a dime between them. He then rubs the two large coins together, and within a few seconds silver dust begins to trickle from between them. When the stream of silver stops, the two coins are separated to show the dime gone— apparently ground to dust.

Method: Mr. Elmsley created this charming novelty to take advantage of a coin gimmick devised by a friend. Jack Delvin. Large English pennies and a sixpence were originally used. American magicians may wish to translate this into U.S. coinage, like half dollars and dimes. However, it is suggested that large copper coins be retained, as their contrast with the silver dust enhances the visual effect.

The secret is a special shell coin. A recess large enough to hold a dime is made in one of the copper coins. This recess is machined off center, near one edge of the coin, as shown in Figure 188.

To prepar e for the milling effect, fill the recess in the gimmick with silver glitter (available from craft and hobby shops). Set an unprepared second copper coin over the gimmick, trapping the glitter in the cavity. Carry these two coins in a clip to keep them together in your pocket until needed. Slip them out of the clip as you bring them from the pocket.

Hold the copper coins with the unprepared one uppermost, grasping them between the thumb and fingertips near the hollowed edge of the gimmick. You can spread the coins a fair distance without exposing the recess. This allows you to display them in a reasonably casual fashion (Figure 189). Do so. Then introduce a dime and slip it cleanly between the two copper coins at their outer edges; that is, opposite the ar ea of the recess.

Transfer the coins from hand to hand, turning them over in the process, and gripping the coins by the edge opposite the recess. Hold them between the thumb and fingertips and slowly begin to rub them together. Turning the coins over has spilled the glitter from the recess, and the rubbing causes a silver trickle to issue from between the coins. That same rubbing motion works the dime gradually forward and into the empty recess of the gimmick. When most of the glitter has been produced, and the dime is safely in the hollow, you can show that the two copper coins lie perfectly flat against one another. Separate the coins by sliding the gimmick off the honest coin, retaining the dime in the recess with a thumb or fingertip. Now casually display both sides of the copper coins, concealing the dime and recess with the fingers. Then put them away.

July 8, 1972

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