Rising Cards Through The

We have discussed Rising Cards in earlier lessons, but these effects which you learn here are even more amazing than those I taught you before. Here you learn how to make cards rise up and soar into the air up into your hand. Howard Thurston made a hit in London years ago with this style of rising card effect and he still uses it in his evening performances. I give you three methods which are practical and easy to perform with or without an assistant. The effects are adapted to stage work and other work where a black thread is invisible.

Performer asks members in the audience to call out names of four cards. The deck is shuffled and placed in a glass tumbler on the table. Magician places his right hand high above the glass and causes one of the selected cards to rise out of the deck and soar up into the air to his finger-tips. Each of the four selected cards is made to rise in similar manner. At the end of the experiment, selected cards are thrown out to audience.


3 -- A glass tumbler with base, large enough to hold deck of cards easily.

4 -- A Wrist Reel. We supply you with a Reel for a reasonable price.


To Prepare:

Figure 43.

One deck of cards is placed, face up, on table offstage so that audience is not aware of it. Deal the cards into four or more rows so that any card can be picked up instantly.

Nearby have the glass tumbler on the tray. An assistant offstage has charge of this.

Figure 43.

The Wrist Reel is a special piece of magical apparatus. It consists of a small round box, 1 3/8 in. in diameter and 3/8 in. thick. At one side is a flesh-colored ring attached to a button, about 3/8 in. in diameter. A piece of elastic with snaps on the ends is attached to the reel. This is to go around performer's forearm.

Figure 44.

Inside of the box is a wheel in which a spring is coiled and attached to a pivot. Around the wheel is wound about 30 inches of fine black silk thread. One end is attached to the wheel inside, and the other free end comes through a small hole in the side of the box. This end of thread goes through eyelet of a small flesh-colored ring and is finally tied to a small flat button. When reel is not in use, the force of the spring keeps ring and button up against the box. A piece of conjurer's wax is placed on button.

Figure 45.

Fasten the Reel around your right forearm by snapping the elastic tape into place. Reel should be placed up high enough on forearm so that Ring and Box do not show, Coat sleeve is, of course, pulled down to cover Reel, It is important to be able to reach up with left hand and take hold of ring easily. You will have to experiment in adjusting apparatus.

Figures 46 and 47.

As the silk thread will wear out, you must watch it closely. TEST APPARATUS BEFORE EVERY PERFORMANCE. It is easy to change thread, To do so, lift off top of box, loosen the spring at center pivot, take out wheel, and put new thread on, Then replace wheel in box, tighten spring, and replace top of box,

Just before starting your experiment, secretly get the ring on second joint of second finger of right hand, Help adjust it with left hand. Have button toward inside of hand, If ring is too large or too small, have a jeweler adjust it,

Figure 4 8.

To Perform:

Have assistant offstage at the table with cards,

Come forward with second deck of cards, The Reel is adjusted to your forearm with ring on second finger,

Ask members of audience to call out four cards,

As cards are called, assistant picks up each card called for from first deck on table offstage, He places these four cards together faces up, on tray with glass tumbler, First card called goes on bottom, then second, third and fourth,

Assistant comes on to stage with tray, holding it tilted back so that audience cannot see the cards on it,

As spectators have called cards, you have named each selected card after them, Now give deck a good shuffle to give assistant time to get out on stage with tray,

Place shuffled deck, cards facing up, on top of the four cards already on tray, Pick up the glass, Assistant places tray with cards on a table on stage and exits,

Tap glass,

"This glass was once the property of an old East Indian conjurer, It is clear and has a good ring, He used to tell his audience that he used a glass tumbler in his trick so that his spectators could see through it -- that is, the tumbler, not the trick,"

Replace tumbler on tray and pick up deck of cards. The four selected cards are on "Top" of the deck and ready for use. Hold deck in right hand with fingers above and thumb at bottom edge. Cards face audience. Bring left hand up to deck.

Figure 49.

Grasp deck in left hand with fingers in front and thumb behind. Straighten second finger of right hand so that waxed button comes near cards. With tip of left thumb push button against top card about half an inch from top edge and midway between sides.

Figure 50.

Hold button secure against card with left thumb. Then put right thumb against button and hold deck in right hand over the top edge of cards. Release left hand. Place deck in glass -- cards face audience.

Figure 51.

Place left thumb on button again and release right hand, raising it about 18 inches above the deck. Left thumb holds button on card securely to prevent card from rising prematurely. As right hand is raised, thread is pulled out of Reel. When right hand is in position, hold thread between thumb and forefinger to prevent its winding back into Reel until you are ready.

Figure 52.

Release hold on button with left thumb and bring left hand away from cards. Say to person calling out first card:

"Pardon me, what was your card, sir? The Four of Diamonds. Four of Diamonds, rise!"

Release hold on thread with right thumb and forefinger and allow card to rise up into hand. The thread winds back on to wheel in Reel and causes the card to come up to right hand. The speed with which card is to rise must be experimented with. It must be neither too slow nor too fast. Card should come up gracefully and speedily enough to keep it from turning around.

Figure 53.

When card reaches hand, grip it at upper edge -Figure 54 shows view away from audience.

With right thumb loosen button from card and allow it to fly back against ring on second finger.

Remove deck from glass with left hand, using some suitable "Patter." Place selected card which has risen in front of deck and attach waxed button to rear card again.

Replace deck in glass, following same routine until all four selected cards have been caused to rise.


If desired, this experiment may be performed without an assistant. Have four spectators select cards from the deck and return them to middle of deck. Get selected cards to

"Top" of deck. As you go back to stage, you can get ring from under right coat sleeve and place it on second finger. Then proceed as above.

BE CAREFUL THAT THREAD IS NOT HELD IN FRONT OF WHITE SHIRT OR SOME LIGHT-COLORED OBJECT. It is best to have glass at the right so that your right hand is extended to the right and the thread is invisible against the background of the stage.

This is the Rising Card Method which Paul Fuchs and I use. We call it our Emergency Method. It has many possibilities and does not require mechanical apparatus.

Even though we may be doing the Rising Cards with a Reel or some other method, we have a glass tumbler prepared for this Emergency Method so that it can be used if necessary. It is a good idea to be ready this way in stage work, though it is not absolutely necessary. If your thread breaks or the trick fails for some reason, you may produce the selected cards in some other way.

However, here is the Emergency Method: EFFECT:

Four cards are freely selected from pack, remembered, and returned to deck, which is then shuffled. Deck is placed in glass tumbler. Magician holds his hand high above the glass and the selected cards rise, one by one, up to his hand.


2 -- A glass tumbler with stem, large enough to hold deck of cards.

3 -- A yard of fine black silk thread.


To Prepare:

Figure 55.

To Prepare:

Tie one end of thread to stem of glass and the other end to a small flat button. Place a small piece of wax on button and stick button on stem of glass. Place glass thus prepared on table and you are ready to work. Turn side of glass with button away from audience. Thread is invisible.

Figure 55.


Have four cards freely selected, remembered, and replaced one by one in middle of deck. Do the Simplified Pass and get cards to top of deck. Shuffle cards without disturbing four selected cards on top.

Return to stage. Pick up glass and show. Place cards inside of glass with faces toward audience.

Hold glass by stem in left hand. With right hand remove button from stem.

Figure 56.

Attach button to rear card of deck as you did in preceding experiment. Get right forefinger under thread and raise right hand above glass about 18 inches.

Figure 57 shows view from the side to give you diagram of arrangement of hands and thread.

Ask last spectator what card he selected. Then cause the rear card (his card) to rise out of the glass by raising your right hand and lowering your left. Card comes right up to hand.

Figure 58 shows view from audience, except that thread is invisible.

Be careful to have right hand a little to the right so that thread is not in front of white shirt.

Place card in front of deck. As you do so, remove button and hold it concealed between right thumb and finger-tips. Attach button to rear card again and place deck in tumbler. Ask third spectator who selected card to name it, then cause this card to rise. Continue in this routine for all four cards.

The lowering of glass and raising of right hand slightly causes cards to rise without any apparent movement of hands.

Levitation of a Card --

A splendid climax for the Rising Cards Through the Air if you are performing on a stage and have two assistants.


Same as for Rising Cards Through the Air. Then as last selected card rises from deck and remains suspended in air,

performer passes his hands around card to show no connection. At command, card rises and drops and finally drops almost to the floor Then it comes up again to performer's hand.


To Prepare:

This effect requires a prepared card. Cut a piece from a card, straight at one edge and triangular at the other. Crease triangular end a little and paste straight edge down on back of another card at top. This makes a lip under which thread can be stretched.

Figure 59.

Place this prepared card in a pocket which you can reach easily.

Stretch a fine black silk thread across the stage. Have each end held by an assistant in opposite wings offstage. Before performing effect, put thread out of the way by tying it in SLIP KNOT fashion over a nail high up on each side of stage.

To Perform:

In having cards selected FORCE A DUPLICATE OF THIS PREPARED CARD AS THE FIRST SELECTED CARD. After you have had four selected cards returned to deck and have performed the Simplified Pass, this duplicate card is fourth from top of deck and is out of the way. As you go back to stage, get the prepared card and place it on top of deck. Or have assistant place prepared card on tray and you place rest of deck on it as taught to you in a preceding experiment.

In this case, place button on NEXT to top card to cause three selected cards to rise. After three cards have risen, the prepared card is next. This is on top of the deck.

Take cards out of the glass and hold in left hand, cards facing audience. Fingers are in front and thumb behind cards. Hold deck about a foot in front of you.

At this point, have assistants pull on thread enough to slip knots from nails and bring it down in front of you and back of deck so that you can easily hook prepared card on it. Raise right hand a little, apparently causing card to rise as assistants raise thread. Drop left hand with cards to your side.

Figure 60.

At command, card is caused to rise and drop at different rates of speed. At intervals you can pass hands above, below and around card to show no connections. When you pass hands over sides of cards, do it behind thread. It looks as though you pass hands directly beside edges of cards.

Finally have card drop down almost to floor, and then quickly rise up to hand.

Figure 61.

Catch card in right hand and hold as one assistant drops thread and other assistant pulls it clear of card and offstage.

With good SHOWMANSHIP, you can get a wonderful effect with this.

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