Fanning Powder experiences. Card longevity topic

Discussion in 'Cardistry & Flourishing Forum' started by Juvator, Oct 20, 2017.

  1. I thought I wouldn't be the only one that has made a post about this so before you say please do a forum search, I did. And the results were unsatisfying.

    Not much info there

    Not much of a fanning powder debate there either :p

    Another unanswered fanning powder thread

    All threads about the subject seem to be very short and mostly not very informing.


    So for this reason I'm re-posting this question about fanning powder but also how you guys treat your cards.

    So I just powdered my first used deck, god what a messy thing to do. First off it's impossible to get even coverage without powdering each card individually. Because simply putting them in a plastic zip bag only really powders the outer cards and I could see many many cards that were in the middle of the deck that were still not powdered. Putting in half the deck was also too much still so I ended up doing it 1 by 1. They do fan without clumping again though so it did work but they do feel much more sluggish now. So obviously I would prefer using new decks over powdered decks but since it seems like a cheap way to make them last a bit longer I might need to get used to it.

    But I wanted to try fanning powder to see at least what the effect would be. The reason being that I can open several new decks a day even when I Wash my hands 100 times and even clean off the oils with extra sanitizer.

    But so far no bicycle / tally-ho / phoenix or bee deck has been able to fan for longer than a day and usually less. This is pretty damn frustrating to me and very costly. It just drives me nuts that even though I KNOW I have the skill to make a perfect thumb fan it just doesn't work anymore because of clumping. I'm pretty good at not bending/wrecking my cards so much anymore during general usage so that fanning stays possible for longer as well. As a beginner cards wear down a lot faster obviously and when practicing it's impossible to not ruin cards sometimes.

    I would like to know you guy's experiences with fanning powder and card maintenance or just simply keeping your cards in better shape.

    Just a bit of extra information :

    - I don't perform
    - all usage of my cards right now is pretty much practice practice practice
    - I only do Cardistry atm, meaning flourishes and such for which cards need to be as pristine as possible ofc.

    I feel like I'm already doing a lot to keep my cards lasting as long as possible but I would love to hear from guys with a few more decades or at least years of experience :)
  2. -edit- one last thing that might be important to mention is that I do practice for 5-10 hours a day. So perhaps there simply just isn't anything I can do better. But I try to switch between 2 fresh decks while doing that practice every 15 minutes or so.
  3. I've never used it, but from what I've read, it is actually mislabeled. Fanning Powder makes the cards clump together apparently, making it better for packet flourishes. I've also read that it is completely useless (though some people say that you have to use it perfectly, and you get a good result). I believe the initial intent would have been to create decks similar to Aladdins, ones that have a smooth, non-air-cushioned finish/no emboss but still be really smooth and feel good in the hands by filling up the embossing on a deck. Also, I do believe it was initially made more so for Card Manipulations, and found it's way into cardistry from there.

    On the plus side, you now have a few decks you can practice cuts, packets, and blocks with :)

    Again, I have never used it, but I have done a lot of research on it, and from what I can tell, it's cheaper to just buy a few more decks. One 2 oz can of Fanning powder costs the same as a deck or 2.

    Finally, I think that it will create a smooth surface on the cards after they are used over time. The powder is now in the holes, but also all over the cards. As you slide them across each other and use them a bit more, the powder sitting on top of the cards will be worn off/sanded down, creating a smoother surface, or at least that is the goal of the powder. Maybe keep using them and let us know

    P.S. I'm fairly certain the exact same result can be accomplished using baby powder. But again, I have no clue. I've never felt the need to experiment with them lol.
  4. First thing I noticed is that yes you have to use it perfectly which kinda means you have to do each card individually to make sure it's evenly spread. If you don't go for the even spread of the powder I think you will just ruin your deck, and the way it's shown in all these videos well I cannot imagine they get such a good powder distribution. By shaking it around in a bag because that did not work very well for me at all.
    But whereas my deck did not fan at all anymore it now fans perfectly again albeit it sluggish and it feels a bit strange but it fans perfectly.
    The sluggishness is probably due to the air cushion finish being filled up, I haven't tried it with other finish cards yet.

    Yeah I could indeed though I would prefer to just use non powdered decks for that I think since it's kinda cheating, and using it for fans is not cheating since decks stop being able to fan perfectly very quickly.. if we are just talking non pressured fans.

    I think you are wrong there though because I used less than a teaspoons worth for a whole deck and there will still be powder in the bottle left for more decks than I can afford :p And I really don't think you need to use more than I did, I still wasted more than half of it due to a hole in the bag. Prolly like 1/5th of a teaspoon or less would be enough if you take the time to individually powder them. So financially it's actually pretty sweet because all the cards that are still straight get a second life so money-wise it's win-win, I paid about $5 for it.

    As to the wear and tear I will have to see what happens yes. From what I read other substitutes absorb grime and oils and another crap much faster and make it so that the cards just don't work at all anymore, whereas the fanning powder would not have that problem so much. And price-wise there's no upside to using baby powder since that will probably be around the same price but for the amount you need it really doesn't matter I will never finish this one bottle of powder:p

    But you think the powder is supposed to wear the cards down to create a smoother surface because that seems weird to me?
    I would think the powder acts as microscopic ball bearings or something like that ? but then again it does turn the card sluggish so not the the greatest bearings then :p
    Maaz Hasan likes this.
  5. No no no, the cards with the powder will wear down the excess powder that is lying on top over time, thus creating the ball bearing effect inside each embossing.

    Again, it'll prolly work over time.
  6. Fanning powder in my experience has VERY limited applications. If applied correctly, it will completely change the feel of the cards, but allow you to fan cleanly. For a while. Once the powder absorbs any moisture, everything changes. Things start to clump and get sticky, and you cannot ever get powdered cards back to a new deck state.

    This is 100% not the intention of the product. It can, and will (if applied correctly) help with fans for a time. No mislabeling at all. It is just a cheap shortcut, and after time all cheap shortcuts come back to bite you. In the end you will clump.

    More or less. The powder just acts as a dry lubricant. It keeps the cards from binding on each other. The dimples in your playing cards? They exist to prevent your cards from sticking together as they slide by giving the cards little pockets for air pressure to release. The powder does essentially the same thing as the dimples, except it does it on top of the existing card surface. If your cards stop fanning, and you apply fanning powder, you are applying a new layer on top of the dirt and oil on your card, allowing the cards to slide freely again... until either you wear through the fanning powder back down to the dirt and oil, or until the powder gets moist and starts to cake up on you.

    As for applying it - In the past when I have done this, I poured powder into a paper bag, then dropped one card at a time into it, shaking briefly between cards. By the time I get to the last card and give it one more shake, everything is individually powdered evenly. I then remove the cards, put them into a clean paper bag, and shake again to remove excess power. They are ready to use after re-stacking and a couple shuffles.

    Your milage my vary, but I after using fanning powder multiple time I won't touch it anymore. Too gimmicky. It helps fan a little, but also guarantees a nasty death for your deck, and also pretty much ruins those cards for any other purpose while they are still alive.

    Hope it helps!

    // L
    Maaz Hasan likes this.
  7. Aye that is a downside I guess. But otherwise that deck wouldn't have been used anymore to begin with right. At least it extends the life of your practice decks. But I see what you mean yeah, I already feel less inclined to used my powdered deck because for one thing there's always some particles that get on your fingers again. And I doubt it's healthy too. It does not beat a new deck at all but those decks would probably have died a lonely death otherwise as well.

    Btw so there is a way to get a normal deck to a new deck state then? or am I just taking you too literally. Because if there is a better way I'd love to hear it ofc :)

    Shaking them together afterwards in a clean bag is not a bad addition to the method indeed. And then afterwards I personally used dribbles and anaconda's to get rid of the excess. And you are right the deck cannot really be used for many other things anymore now.

    Do you think it could work to wipe down cards with some fast evaporating alcohol like substance to remove buildup? This is without powder ofc. I would not want to even try to clean up a dirty powdered deck I guess.

    The substance could possible damage the cards too I would reckon but it's only for life extending purposes.

    And I was also thinking that when u powder an old deck you already capture the old grime and oils in there, so powdering after cleaning would seem better but then powdering might not be necessary anymore or maybe it's just a bad idea to begin with haha.

    In the end we all just prefer a new deck if that's what the trick requires do give the best results.
  8. Most of the time, when you think a deck is dead, it is just too humid. Set it in the tuck case somewhere dark and dry, and leave it for a few weeks. You may be surprised by how good it feels just from that. I always rotate through multiple decks, so every deck I use gets put away for weeks at a time before being picked up again.

    // L
  9. Aye I have noticed that indeed. Though I have not been able to leave it untouched that long yet though since I do not have that many cards to spare :p
  10. So just an update, Besides my hand feeling a bit dry and being doubtful about the health issues concerning that powder.
    But other than that I've found that you can do some tricks in slow motion now sort of where before it would use gravity it now possibly gets a helping hand if u have any fingers or hand to spare. And this can make for some interesting visual effects I believe. So it's sort of a gimmick then I guess but nevertheless I think it could make things possible that otherwise would not be. But still I'm over zealously posting this as I've yet to adequately compare some of these slowmotion moves to a fresh deck since they are suddenly pretty damn hard if not impossible :p
    Maaz Hasan likes this.
  11. I have a Virtuoso 2016 deck that I use regularly and have used fanning powder on several times. It does change the feel immediately. Its sluggish and not a quick in some motions but sometimes I feel that the slower motion ia more beautiful. It does help hold the packets together as well which truthfully is the only way I have been able to learn some packet flourishes and cuts that are more advanced. Fanning powders main ingredient whose name slips me at the moment is actually classified as a dry lubricant. Once I find the source I will post the info. Using anything else will ruin your cards especially baby powder as it absorbs more oils from the hands as well as relative humidity. I have noticed that I cant use that deck as long before it needs to rest and sit.
  12. Nice deck man :) I recently got my hands on some sealed SS13 SS14 SS15 for a great price too. Also the main ingredient name you are looking for is Zinc Stearate.

    Do you clean the cards before re-powdering them?

  13. I individualy wipe them off with a clean microfiber cloth after 3 or 4 applications.

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