Foundations: Help with bottom deal.

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by eostresh, Jul 11, 2010.

  1. Jason England recommends starting off learning the bottom deal with the first two grips he describes, Erdnase and Modified Erdnase. My problem is that my hand size is such that I cant hold the deck stable in either of those grips. I have been working with those grips for two weeks but best the deck feels out of control. My question is, is it really that bad to move on to the Mechanics grip styles( a grip that I can control much better) before fully learning the Erdnase grips? I'm afraid my decks will not only continue to fall on the floor but begin flying against the wall if I keep trying to force that grip to work for me.

    Thanks for any advice.
  2. Ideally you'd want to do all your false deals with the same grip. If you use a modified erdnase grip for a bottom deal, you should learn to do a second deal with the same grip.. so on and so forth. Doing a bottom deal from a mechanics grip is great if you put the necessary practice. There's also a bottom deal with a master's grip which is similiar to the erdnase grip.

    I have a similar problem with the erdnase grip, I've tried using it for a while, but I lose control of the deck. I have since started using a mechanics grip for my bottom deals. It still needs a lot of work, but it's a grip I'm comfortable with now.

    If you'd like some other sources, you can check out Card College 4 (which briefly talks about bottom deal) and/or Ed Marlo's book "Seconds, Centers, Bottoms". I've heard people mention Gene Maze's Art of Bottom Dealing, but since it's out of print I haven't gotten my hands on it to read.

    Good luck with your bottom deal :)
  3. Yeah. I think I'm having the same problem. I lose control of the middle of the deck and i dont know if I am holding too tight or not tight enough. When I try and adjust the same thing happens regardless. I'm not sure on what it is. Sorry :(
  4. I spent a long time finding the right pressure and spot for my bottom deal. I did as Jason recommended and went through each deal one by one. If you can't do the Erdnase deal, I'm sure you will have trouble with the others as well. You hand size really doesn't have anything to do with it, you just have to get the right pressure in the right spot. It will take a while, don't expect to get it over night. Keep putting it in the right spot, and turning your hand upside down to see if the deck stays. Also make sure you're not starting off with a full deck :p Build up to that.

    I have no problem answering any questions, and I know Jason is very good about answering PM's.

    Just don't give up :p
  5. Alright thanks Rob, you were a big help ( no sarcasm intended. ) if I have any other questions I shall probably ask you. Thanks.
  6. Okay thanks for all the input. So, if I hear you right Robert, you are saying that other problems will develope down the road If I don't learn the Erdnase...correct? Because right now I can do it with decent control from the mechanics grip but amost no control from Erdnase. I'll try it with the 1/2 deck for a while and see what I can work out. Honestly I'm stumped. I've never use the "hand size" excuse before. For god sakes I figured out how to do a triple charlier I ought to be able to do this! The problem is my fingers either feel over extended or the lower left corner of the deck just slides off the bottom of the palm. Anyways I'll take your suggestions to heart. I might even give the PM a try. Can't hurt to ask.

    Thanks again guys.
  7. Well, what Jason teaches is just like, a rough map. You really just have to find the best spot to hold the deck. I still can't hold it the way he taught it. This might sound stupid, but I've given up learning the bottom deal for a few years until my hands are bigger...
  8. HaHa...well being an adult waiting for my hands to grow isn't a real option...unless I stick them on a wrack! To be honest I'm surprized I'm having so much trouble. My fingers are kind of short but I have large palms so all together they average out and I would say I have pretty normal size hands. Oh well...I'll keep playing around with the grip.
  9. I'm curious to how you're doing the mechanics grip version, but unable to do the erdnase.. Are you using a loosening action? If you are then I don't see how you wouldn't be able to do the erdnase grip, as all you have to do is reposition one finger.

    The deck slid in my palm FOREVER until I found the right spot and it calloused. Just start with the deck in dealing position and make sure it stays around that vicinity when you get ready for your bottom deal. I myself use the Gene Maze grip and a strike deal.

    If you make a video, and make it private I'll take a look at it and try to give you some tips.
  10. Well Rob, I think that MY problem is in fact the loosening action I can't seem to do it at ALL.
  11. Yeah, you won't be able to do it without the proper grip and pressure. Re-watch the one-on-one and make sure you didn't miss anything. Most of all, KEEP PRACTICING.

    I've been working about 3 months on the move, and I find it easy to get in position for either of the grips and have a decent bottom. I'm not anywhere near perfect, but I'm on my way :D
  12. I remember in one of Jason's videos, he states that stuff like palming and deals like that are, in some cases, easier due to the fact that he has pretty large hands.
  13. Actually, in his videos he explains how, due to his large hands, he had to make variations on the sleights because it was harder for him. He states that he cannot do a mechanics strike easily because of his large hands, and opts for the loosening action.

    Hand size doesn't matter...
  14. Robert, thanks for all the tips and the offer for the video evaluation. I might take you up on it if I get a chance. As for your question about how Mechanics is easier, I only meant in terms of stabilizing the deck. My bottom deals suck regardless of which grip but it feels like I will have more success with the mechanics. What you said about building a calous made lots of sense. The distance from middle finger to point on my palm puts the deck in a soft part of my palm with no palm lines or natural wrinkles so if I apply any pressure the cards just shoot out the back of my palm. I think if I take your advice, start with a 1/2 a deck and build up a calous, I should be able to do the move.

    Thanks again.
  15. Erdnase had very soft and, probably, very small hands, and he said that, in his bottom deal, the deck had a tendency to slip out of position and had to be worked back into place. Therefore, it may be that the "Expert at the Card Table" would prefer soft, sensitive hands than to build up a callous, even if it made the move harder. Just a thought, apropos of nothing.
  16. Hi Iam new to this fourm but not to card mechanics. A bottom deal is just not that hard and I hope this will be of some help. The best grip for the bottom is Erdnase grip. instead of the left index finger at the upper right front corner of the deck as in a machanics grip you just get the middle finger in the same position. Why!! because it provides more cover to the front edge of the deck thus makeing the bottom more conceled. The bottom card buckel is done with the left ring finger. That being said the problem that everyone has is not knowing wear to place the left ring finger to get the buckel out. Do exactly what i tell you and you will have no problem with the buckel. first with no deck in your hand touch the left ring finger tip to the left thumb tip. get the idea this is the position to get the buckel. Now with the deck in your left hand push over the top card with your thumb. where ever your left thumb ends up put your left ring finger directly under it and this will be the right spot on the bottom card to get the buckel and push out. Try thi and you will see how easy it is. no practice, tears, or big hands are needed. you now have the mechanics of a bottom it is up to you to practice boady and wrist turn etc. to make it convinceing. I recently saw a video of the undercover switch and I tried to do the same thing with out instruction. what i came up with is a simple bottom deal on the turn over of trhe top card to add the bottom card to the top card. I don't know if this is how the undercover swith is done but it looks dam good and it is far more versitile than a double and day. So learn that bottom deal and enjoy.

    Best Regards
  17. Thanks Roland but this is a public forum and anybody can read it, so you might want to edit your post to prevent exposure. but hey, maybe i'm wrong and bottom deal is like some weird public domain move.

    But welcome to the forum and thanks for wanting to contribute so generously so soon!
  18. It is publicly available. Since Erdnase's book was produced in 1902, the copyright generally covers about 70 years, but none of his relatives or w/e extended it, thus making it public domain. The "Conjuring Arts Research Center" has made Erdnase's book into a downloadable pdf, available at Furthermore, they are the ones that formed the book into a "bible edition".

    Long story short, it's publicly available and... yeah.
  19. That bible edition is actually really handy. 1st off it looks really cool, 2nd. it is small enough that you really can carry it with you wherever you go. 3rd. you really should support what those guys are trying to do.

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