Questions about "Smooth Finish"

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by lolhammertime, May 10, 2016.

  1. Hello!

    I recently bought a pack of smooth finish cards and I was wondering if humidity affects the cards like it does to a pack of air cushion finish cards? Does it make the cards soggy like air cushion? Also, does the finish "wear off" like air cushion? Will it reach a point where it will no longer fan?

    Now that's a lot of questions...

    Thanks in advance!
  2. I believe that smooth finish cards such as the Aviators will not be affected as much as the Air-Cushion finish e.g Bicycles because of the lack of "bubbles" or small bumps that you see if you examine the card closely. That being said I find that Air-Cushion cards have better handling. Humidity affects them both about equally if you put the cards to a test they both tend to clump up when in very humid conditions. The finish will "wear off" far faster on an air cushion then on a smooth. And to answer your last question I think that you will never get to a point where you can not fan the cards due to the humid climate. It may clump but you will still be able to fan them. (just not perfectly).
    lolhammertime likes this.
  3. Actually, I have Bicycle decks that I mistreated so badly that it only fans 3 cards or so... In the US, cards only start clumping up ever so slightly after 2 months of use or so, but in here, after 2 months, the deck will be soggier and clumpier than a wet flapjack. But that being said, I think I should stick to my Aladdins for heavy use/practice.
    Gabriel Z. likes this.
  4. Smooth finish, air cushion finish, it doesn't matter. They are made of paper. Paper + Water = bad. Humidity will make any deck of paper cards sticky and clumpy. Best to avoid letting your cards get overly humid.

    // L
  5. How do I prevent humidity getting into the cards? I'm mostly indoors and it still gets clumpy. Any ideas on avoiding humidity WHILE using the deck? Thanks in advance!
    Gabriel Z. likes this.
  6. I heard that if you store them in the freezer, it helps with humidity getting into them as quickly. Try that.
  7. not sure if that's a good idea though. Might need testing with a "guinea pig" deck
  8. Humidity is one thing. Clean hands is another, and it is much more important since dirty hands can ruin a deck within minutes!

    My teenage son was once practicing a trick with only the 4 aces. After 5 minutes, you could tell by eye where where the aces are in the pack, and fanning would reveal the 4 locations instantly. Although we see our hands as being clean, there are not necessary. Sugar, oil and dirt accumulates on our hands, even if not visible. Once these get on the cards, it's game over. Wash and dry thoroughly before handling cards.
  9. I always wash and they get clumped in weeks!
  10. Terrible thing to do. Humidity is caused by several things, and this is directly causing one of those things. Taking a cold deck into a warm environment? Your deck will become as magnet for humidity as it warms up. Moisture in the warm air will condense on the cold deck, and may effectively ruin it.

    1. Wash and dry your hands. This is for two reasons - removing dirt and oil, and removing sweat.
    2. Don't store your deck in your pocket. Your body will release humidity, and that can work its way into your deck.
    3. Store your decks in a cool, dry place.

    All that said, you may NOT be able to avoid getting your decks humid. Not the end of the world, so long as you don't let them get soaked. If a deck starts to clump, put it back in storage. Cool, dry place. Get out a different deck and use it instead. Moisture will try to go wherever things are dry. If you bring a dry deck into a humid environment it is going to end up eventually getting humid. If you take a humid deck and put it into a dry environment, it will end up drying out. Keep a small, rotating stock of decks you use. When when gets humid, it goes back to the collection to dry, and you grab a deck that you have already dried. When the deck has time to dry out much of the stickiness will go away.

    // L
    Josh Burch likes this.
  11. My theory is that playing cards work like a thermostat, as the cards get warm they warp because one side of the card expands while the other side remains rigid. Humidity makes this even worse.

    I have decks that I have used for years that still look pretty new and handle pretty well.

    Lyle and I think alike it seems!

    1. Keep your hands clean: Like has been said this can kill a deck of cards.

    2. Keep your hands dry: Unfortunately, some people have sweaty hands, I do not. My hands are always bone dry to the point that when I hand a deck out to be shuffled it feels clumpy almost immediately. I assume that this is because my hands are generally dryer than others. That leads me to my next point.

    3. Don't let other people touch your cards: Regular people don't have the care that we do as magicians. They also aren't as sensitive to the feeling of a deck.

    4. Don't carry the deck in your pocket: When you carry the deck in your pocket it introduces all sorts of junk into the deck, sweat, dust, lint ect. The only exception to this is to carry the deck in a Porper card clip or better. This protects the cards even more than the box.

    5. Don't drop the deck: If you drop the deck on a relatively clean surface you still may damage the cards. Dust, scratches and bumps all affect how the deck handles. Dropping the deck is a sure way to kill a deck. Also, make sure the surface you practice on is spotless. It is not wet or dirty, just dry and pristine.

    6. Certain sleights can kill a deck: Cards are resilient, at least a good deck is. That said, there are tons of sleights that bend and warp cards. Things as simple as an improper bridge or cascade can warp a deck. When I first learned how to back palm large portions of cards this killed my decks.

    7. Crappy decks clump quickly: At Comic Con I bought a few decks of cards with a "magician's" finish. This was sold as better than an air cushion but in this instance the cards clumped almost immediately. Bad, cheap, decks don't fan or ribbon spread right. Cambric finish, or air cushion finish have been the best for me.

    8. Don't just use one deck: Give your cards a rest sometimes. Use a deck for a day then switch it the next day. When your cards get a second to dry out and "relax" they last longer in my experience.

    I hope that helps!
    WolfSage and Lyle Borders like this.
  12. Great minds think alike. While I was writing my post it looks like Lyle posted his. It's all good info even if some of it is written twice :)
    Lyle Borders likes this.
  13. I guess it's scratch the freezer idea, although one can make the argument that some freezers are colder than others. Hey Lyle , how about storing them in the refrigerator, you said
    Personally I don't have a problem with decks whether it's hot or cold and believe me it gets cold here in the North Country. My used decks are stored in a BCW box and this helps a lot.
    Try storing them in a box this might eliminate or at least reduce outside variables such as humidity or what have you.
  14. Same issue as storing in the freezer. When you take them out, they are going to be COLD. Cold objects in a warm, humid environment are going to have condensation, and will get wet.

    By "cool", I literally mean "not out in the hot sun". Paper is not rocket science, and it doesn't require a technical, expensive fix. Grab an empty shoebox, put your cards in it, and put them on the closet. Just get them out of sight and let them dry out. I have a custom built cabinet for my collection. No air conditioning in it - It is just a wooden cabinet. It stores my decks in a protected place that is cool and dark. That's it.

    // L
    Gabriel Z. likes this.
  15. Lyle Borders likes this.
  16. If humidity is that great of a concern in your area, ask your mother how she stores her flour, and then do likewise.

  17. Heh-heh. Drawers...

    I live in southern Virginia on the coast and if there's one thing about this place, it's that it's humid. I'm talkin' in the before a storm or hurricane, you're tempted to make a swimming motion whenever you step outside for fear you'll drown! (I exaggerated a little bit) But, you can't spell "magician" without "contingency". Wait...

    Here's what I do. You see those fancy deck boxes. Yeah those. They're specifically made to fight humidity but they're like $30 and you can't hold anything else in it. What I did is I took some driftwood (you can use any wood) and constructed a "magic chest". This thing holds all my cards, books, gimmicks, coins, etc. Then I took soda tabs and made chains. Wrapped that around it and attached a padlock. I'm not a big fan of drawers mainly because they're easy to find. The tabs and lock aren't "necessary" but they give it a dramatic and mysterious feel. You can also make secret compartments for added security.

    But that's just me.
    Mr.Book likes this.

Share This Page

{[{ searchResultsCount }]} Results