"Tricks for the Thumb Tip

(Continued from last month)

Some of us are liable to forget that the THUMB TIP is one of magic's secret gimmicks and must be treated accordingly. No matter what degree of precision goes into its construction both in form and shade, one cannot hold out his hand recklessly and hope that its presence will pass undetected.

In any case a broadside view of the thumb cannot be presented when the tip is in position for the difference between the natural skin texture and the tip will surely manifest itself . But if the thumb is pointed directly to the front, one may be certain that his secret gimmick will not be noticed or suspected. Like the old magic standby, the thin black silk thread which we loosely distinguished as the INVISIBLE THREAD. Is it really invisible? Not so by any means. By proper handling it is only made to seem as such. All this may appear rather obvious when now mentioned, but many of us have a sublime disregard for the obvious. For this reason an occasional reminder will not seem out of line.

In the last two issues I have described a few of my pet silk renderings with this gimmick, and now I wish to add other lines of thought to those already offered.

The first is a combination effect with paper, cigarette and ribbon and I am sure the procedure about to be detailed will be found somewhat unorthodox.


Besides the THUMB TIP you will be needing a yard or so of baby ribbon, a square of tissue paper a lit cigarette, a little wax and about an inch of Scotch tape. About half an inch away from each end of the ribbon place a tiny speck of wax. Press one end of the ribbon about half an inch below the open end of the THUMB TIP and wind the rest around it. The free point of the ribbon is now stuck at the nail end. The Scotch tape is affixed inside the tip and fig. 1 shows the manner

in which this should be done. A small piece is left st eking out, you will notice.

The ribbon bound tip is now attached to the left hand by means of the Scotch tape as depicted in fig. 2. Our illustration, of course, details the exposed position and by bending the arm in a relaxed manner at about waist height with the back facing the spectators the natural appearance of the hand suggests that there is nothing concealed within.

The square of tissue is brought out of the pocket or picked up from the table according to the performer's taste and torn in halves. Our illustration fig. 3 is an action shot taken at this stage of the trick. This is, of course, the back view position and in actual performance the spectators do not see inside the hand.

Thus in this manner the two halves are put together and torn across twice more and the pieces displayed between thumb and first finger of the right hand. The left fingers in the meantime, close into a loose fist. The THUMB TIP incidentally, is now automatically enclosed within.

The torn pieces are slowly lowered into the fist, or at least that is what the spectators believe, but you in fact push them down into the THUMB TIP. During this action, you also dislodge the Scotch tape from the flesh. The lit cigarette, which I shall presume is in readiness between your lips, is next taken between thumb and first finger of the right hand and as before pushed into the TIP.

The closed left hand is now put through the usual squeezing action, and then after a brief spell of suspense, reach under the fist with the extreme tips of the right thumb and first finger and pull down a little of the ribbon into view. From now on the ribbon is developed gradually, and fig. 4 depicts the progression of the trick when it reaches the half way stage.

However, while the right fingers pull down on the ribbon, the left thumb works its way into the tip from above and finally the ribbon is displayed between thumb and first finger of the left as now seen in fig. 5. It is then whipped a couple of times and stored in the pocket. The THUMB TIP is disposed of at the same time.

Actually from the onlookers point of view you have accomplished TWO things. Caused a square piece of tissue and a lit cigarette to vanish

and produced a length of ribbon in exchange. If desired instead of the ribbon you could substitute a flag or a coloured silk.

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