Clean Carbon

EDMUND ROWLAND

IT HAS been said that British magicians do not like to use the clip board method of obtaining a secret copy of something written by a spectator on a slip of paper because a clipboard looks too much like a piece of conjuring apparatus. It can be used convincingly in a stage performance when written questions have to be collected from a large audience, but in more intimate surroundings they would think it more natural to rest the paper on a smooth backed book or the pad from which it had been torn.

This has led to the production of a number of specially faked books which are really clip boards in disguise. An excellent example of these was the one described by Ron Baillie in Pentagram for December, 1950.

Unfortunately, however, none of these can be used again as an ordinary book in the same routine and they cannot be left lying about as safely as a clip board can, for anyone might pick up a book which you have been using and casually turn the pages over to see what it is about, though he might not want to examine a perfectly plain clip board.

It would sometimes be an advantage, therefore, to have a prepared book from which all traces of trickery could be easily and secretly removed.

Now it is easy to prepare a thin backed book by placing a sheet of carbon copying paper and a loose sheet of writing paper between the cover and the first page, so that an impression of the spectator's writing is made through the cover and the carbon paper on to the loose sheet. But it is not very easy to remove these secretly, or to read the impression. Carbon paper is such flimsy and dirty material that you are certain to smudge the impression, or to mark your fingers or the pages of the book.

If you try to keep the carbon paper flat against the writing paper by gluing them together along one edge, you will still find it difficult to separate them secretly to read the impression. But if you use the following method of substituting a sheet of tracing paper for the sheet of writing paper you will find that your carbon copy is perfectly clean.

All that you need to do is to fasten together a sheet of oil bound carbon paper and a sheet of good quality tracing paper by a narrow border of glue around their edges so that the carbon side of the carbon paper rests against the tracing paper. Place this under the cover of a thin backed book with the tracing paper uppermost. An impression of anything written on a slip of paper rested on the book will now be made the right way round on the inner side of the tracing paper. It can therefore be read without having to lift the carbon paper and without having to turn anything over; the carbon cannot mark anything else, and the impression is not likely to be smudged.

As the impression is not made in the normal manner, through the thickness of the carbon paper, anything which will strengthen the carbon paper and help to disguise it can be pasted on to it. If it is to be used inside a writing pad, for example, it can be backed with coloured blotting paper; if it is used inside a book, it can be backed with part of a corresponding page from a similar type of book.

To show how it can be used, here is a simple effect which I have often performed : Enquire if any one in your audience would like a copy of the evening paper. Hand this person a newspaper which has been opened at the crossword puzzle and folded into about a quarter, or an eighth, of its normal size. Lend him a pencil as well, and ask him to fill in any clue, across or down. As he is doing this, pick up a slate and clean it. Then ask him to turn the folded newspaper over and place it on the slate which you are holding like a tray. Walk across to another spectator and ask him to take the newspaper for a moment while you finish your little experiment. After suitable patter and concentration you write the word which the first spectator wrote in the crossword puzzle on your slate. The second spectator confirms that it is correct.

The only preparation is a rectangular piece of " clean carbon " backed with thin black card board. This is hidden in the folds of the newspaper so that it will take an impression of the spectator's writing. When the newspaper is lifted from the slate and handed to the second spectator, the carbon is allowed to slide out on to the slate. All that you have to do then is to read the impression and turn it over so that the black side matching the surface of the slate is uppermost. The method of masking its edges will be obvious from Figure 3 when the area of the cardboard is shown a lighter shade than the slate. The chalk lines represent the squares of the crossword puzzle.

The cardboard can be held to the slate by a dab of wax which was already on the slate to begin with. Alternatively it can easily be held in position with the tip of the your thumb.

The newspaper is then returned to the first spectator to whom you promised it. If he reads it for a week, however, he will not discover any trace of your trickery there!

BOOKS

" FINALE " by Lewis Ganson (Published by Harry Stanley, Unique Magic Studio, 14, Frith Street, London, W.I.), price 30/-.

Let us commence by saying right away that "Finale" sets a new standard for magical textbooks. Regarding it physically it comprises 254 pages measuring 6" x 9i' and is bound with a binding that will stand up1 to a lifetime of reference. Of photographic illustrations there must be hundreds, the art paper used showing them off to their best advantage. In fact this is a volume with an appearance which sells itself.

Now for the contents. There are in all some ten sections : " Anti-Gravity Glasses," " Magic with Coins," " Linking Rings," " Magic with Dice," " Handkerchief Magic," " Magic with Sponge Balls," " Magic of A1 Koran," " Miscellaneous Magic," " Card Magic" and " Card Magic by Manipulation." In the first section two versions of the anti-gravity glasses are described by Lewis Ganson and Elizabeth Warlock, Lewis also adding a number of tips regarding various other presentations. Section two dealing with coins is noteworthy for the inclusion of a delightful coin routine by that phenomenal Dutch manipulator Fred Kaps. Despite its origin, this is a routine well within the compass of those possessing reasonable technique. The Linking Rings section is of first rate importance as it deals with Ken Brooke's method of false counting the rings. We should think that there are few of our readers in this country who have failed to see Ken performing the Linking Rings and they, like myself, must have admired and envied the natural false count that he uses; here it is then described in detail.

Magic with Dice covers two very nice effects, Gerald Kosky's " How Many?" and Ali Bongo's " Dolali Dice." Both routines will go into the programme of those who specialise in close quarter magic. In " Handkerchief Magic" we are treated to a personal lesson by Charlie Edwards on the " Dissolving Knots." The effect of this routine cannot be rated too highly, for it has been one of the mainstays of a working professional's show for more than fifty years With the ever-growing need for the modern magician to have a number of worthwhile close quarter effects at hand, Lewis Ganson has answered the need in Section six by describing the necessaries, accessories and design that go to make up a most deceptive Sponge Ball routine.

The name of A1 Koran needs no introduction and the five routines and tricks that are contributed by him make up a " Stars of Magic" series all on their own.

Torn and restored newspaper, a subtle variation on a 'Gen' Grant theme with typical Koran twists, a money trick, a complete routine with a handkerchief and various odds and ends plus a version of " Do as I Do ", make up forty most satisfying pages of reading matter. " Miscellaneous Magic " consists of some six effects. Four are by Hans Trixer; the first is his miniature version of the cups and balls, the second " Silken Canary " which seems one _of the most delightful ways of producing a silk handkerchief, a close-up quickie called " Slot Machine " and a version of the penetrating billiard ball through handkerchief. Peter Burto routines the burnt and restored cremation paper in a manner that makes a truly magical effect and John Lewis describes a method of the colour changing thimbles.

The penultimate section dealing with card magic is notable for the subtle splendid version of Dai Vernon's " All Backs" routine by Alex Elmsley. So free from moves, so straightforward in presentation, this, as our late friend Will Goldston would have said, is ' One of the plums of the book.' Besides this is a version of the cards to pocket by Patrick Page, Jack Chanin's " Card on Line," the " Nicholas Thought Card," Bobby Bernard's " Educated Frog," Mary Kinson's " Fan See " card and Lewis Ganson's " Brainwave by Telephone."

The concluding section of the book deals with split and single card manipulation. It is clearlv detailed and should prove of considerable assistance to all those essaying this delightful work.

And now a word about the author. Lewis Ganson has performed a wonderful feat in producing the contents of the book. He has a knack of describing a trick in such a way that whilst no detail is missed he never bores with unnecessary padding. It is no easy task to watch another man's trick and then relate the sequences and moves, but this man Ganson has patience and a capacity for taking pains. When you buy the book vou'll find that we have said quite a deal more about both the Author and the Publisher on the vefy nice dust jacket that adorns the cover. A final word of praise, and that is for the printer, our good friend Harry Clarke, a magician himself, and a friend to every magician he meets. He is also a first-class printer, and so he couldn't do otherwise than print a first class book.

We have written more than we usually write about books that come our way. We feel it was more than justified, for as we said at the beginning, " Finale " sets a new standard

AAGE

DARLING

PLAYING WITH MAGIC

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Mental magic in the best Annemann tradition. Packed with practical material. Cloth-bound 17/6 Postage 4d

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Professional standard magic of the highest order. No elaborate props required 7/6 Postage 3d.

MAGIC WAND PUBLICATIONS

Challenge Instant Hypnotism and Mass Hypnotism

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Chandu's Psychoanalysis George Armstrong's Premonition Magic Wand Year Book 48/9 Tricks of the Trade The Universal Mind Bohleno's Mysteries I'll Read Your Mind

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George Armstrong George Armstrong George Armstrong George Armstrong Ron Baillie Henry Bohlen Aage Darling

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Spectator's Choice Douglas Francis

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Twenty-Six Living and Dead Tests Teral Garrett

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is published on the 24th of each month and can be obtained direct from the publishers for 1/7 per tingle copy. Annual Subscription 18/-

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Manuscripts for publication and books for review should be sent to the:

EDITORIAL ADDRESS:

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JACK HUGHES

will be pleased to send you full details of

THE DE LUXE "SU-TABLE"

together with all his other effects in return for a stamp.

Write now to

Jack Hughes, 2, Evelyn Ave., Colindale, London, N.W.9.

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