What coins to use?

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by JDENredden, Jul 29, 2010.

  1. Hey

    I want to buy some good coins for magic. I usually just use regular 20cent coins, but I want something a bit more special.

    What coins do you use? What coins are recommend?

    Also what are the coins Ponta The Smith uses? They look really cool and massive. lol

  2. I use silver Filipino pesos dated from 1903-1909. They're about 1mm smaller in circumference compared to Morgans. I believe Ponta uses Morgans in Sick.
  3. Coin magicians mostly use american half dollar (30mm diameter) and dollar (38mm diameter) coins. They're big and easier to manipulate (thats what she said).
  4. If you want half dollar sized coins, but something fancier than regular Kennedys, buy some Walking Liberties. My favorite coins by far.

    And Ponta uses Morgans, which (for me at least) are very hard to classic palm, and my hands are not small. (practice :p)

  5. i suggest you get on some coin collector sites and look around
  6. Ponta uses Morgan Silver dollars, and the other coins are a Japanese Coin found at a website i cant remember. They sell quick so they might not be in stock. My personal preference for Coin Magic are Morgan Silver dollars or Walking Liberty's for half dollars, although Barber's are nice too and so are 64' kennedy silver dollars. Depends on what you like and hand size.
  7. I personally prefer Barbers because of their look and the softness. But I also use Kennedys sometimes because everyone is familiar with them. I also remember David Roth mentioning something like that.
  8. Crowns!

    You might check your local coin shop and have a look at pre-decimal crowns and half-crowns. Well-worn silver ones are relatively inexpensive.

    The UK went to base metal for the crown and half-crown back around WWII. They are in the same size range as the US dollar and half dollar. The bronze tuppence is a good switcher for the half-crown.

    Eisenhower Dollars were the last of the large US dollar coins. They are not particularly expensive. Kennedy half dollars are, of course, 2 for a US dollar.

    Because of my setting, I'm restricted to pre-1870 coins. I use both reproductions in gold and silver and authentic crowns, half-crowns, half-dollars, Swedish 5 sk, and French 5 franc (the coins that Robert-Houdin used in the original Misers Dream). Modern counterfeit Chinese Dragon Dollars are also good crown-size pieces that are available inexpensively. I also use gambling chips instead of coins. They are in the dollar-size range but much lighter.
  9. hi, go on ebay you'll find the coins you need (try also the soft coins like walking liberty half dollar)
    Peter S.(7) likes this.
  10. i would use 4 half dollars american to start with

    then move onto libertys but make sure they are soft so they dont make much noise, they be alot more expensive but worth it.

    it would be worth saving and going stright to school craft they are the best coins to use. i paid $100 for a 4 liberty coin set and shell but i wish i saved up a bit more and paid the extra for school craft coins then you know you have coins that people like eric jones and others use .

    also Eisenhower Dollars are a good size same size as morgans and cheep and smooth .

    thats what i would of done first time around insted of trail and error
  11. I hope no one mines if I hijack this thread. So anyways, I was thinking of getting into coin magic. I want to buy some coins, I did some searching around on ebay and found....




    I also did some research on half dollars in general. Ok. I'm wondering if it matters what years I use for coin magic. Will the compostion be different in some way?

    For example, the 1976 coins look rather dirty...

    I'm Canadian, so it's hard for me to get half dollars (There are really rare 50 cent pieces in Canada). And plus shipping is quite expensive, so I have to limit my options. And plus, no rolls of Canadian 50 cents exist. :( I looked up those walking liberty coins, they are kind of out of my price range. I mean, its like 10 bucks a piece.

    And ya i saw some stuff about "soft coins" but I don't really get what that is :(

    Well, thanks for reading, it was a combination of random thoughts over 10 minutes so it might not make too much sense :D

    Oh wow it logged me off lol. I had to relog to post this XD
  12. I know this isn't much help, but it's also quite difficult for US citizens to get US 50 cent pieces that are still in circulation. They're in almost no banks but I always make sure to ask. Over the last 3 months i've gotten maybe 10 50 cent pieces and am very happy. I will continue to ask because you can never have enough ;D.

    Chances are that coins from the 70s are dirty because they are old and have been used a lot ;D.
  13. Hmm. I've been living in Canada for 17 years and i have never even SEEN a 50 cent piece. Thats how rare they are :(
  14. I never understood buying fancy coins or specific coins unless your using a shell. Any routine I do or ad to my act should be able to be done with borrowed coins. Now as Canadians were lucky we have the Loonie and Toonie as there great looking coins. I normally use Loonies as I fine there easier to classic palm then the Toonie.

    I really suggest doing coin magic with the coins from your country, because trust if you ask to borrow a few coins off people then start amazing them, I find it alot stronger then just saying,Oh I have these coins that you wont reconize but I swear there just normal (Now of course thats not what I would say, but you see my point).

    Over the years I dont know how many people I've seen walk away from a amazing display of coin magic, but then just dismiss it to "trick coins" because the person was using Morgans Or other type of fancy coins.
  15. Just a thought to throw out there. It's fairly easy to find custom made coins in the half dollar to silver dollar size range. Frequently referred to as 'Challenge Coins', they can be made with a custom designed image, so you can specialize them to yourself and use them for marketing like a business card. They cost about $3 each (at least the quote I got did), but you'll have to order a set amount. The site I looked at had a limit of at least 100 coins, and with the mold fee it ended up being around $406 for 100 coins.
  16. I only use common coins... here in New Zealand our coins are horrible for coin magic but I still continue to use them because they are recognized, don't look odd and I should be able to borrow a coin to do magic with. So yea I would never use a foreign coin. Just my thoughts...
  17. Chinese coins.
  18. I personally like using Morgan Dollars because I have large hands so my classic palm appears more natural, to me anyway. It really does not matter what year coin you use some might be heavier or lighter but with practice you can get used to any coin. 1970's coins are dirty because they are old and circulated ( Unless you find some that are mint condition). My Morgans were 20 a piece at a coin shop and I doctored them to get them to look the way I wanted them to. You could just use toonies though, I took a trip to Toronto last winter and played around with them for a while and they are pretty cool and big enough to do coin work with.
    Also, it may be important for some magicians to use a coin that is from their country so people don't think you are using gimmicked coins, but if your talented enough you will blow their mind no matter what. Not to mention the fact that you can have a spectator inspect the coins theirselves.

    Soft coins in my opinion are just really worn out coins in appearance but they are also said to reduce the sound of the coins talking when you are manipulating.

    Hope some of this or any of it will help!!!
  19. As far as 'common currency vs. different coins, as long as it fits your character, it will fly. I use Peace dollars and Canadian silver dollars busking, and nobody has said a word about it. The coins end up in the spectator's hands at the conclusion, and they can withstand scrutiny. People seem to think that common coins would be gaffed as well - maybe even more often. Why would you ruin an old silver dollar (that is most likely valuable), as opposed to a loonie?

    Also, context is a consideration - I'm a busker, I'm in my forties, so it just fits that I would have some nice props, including neat old coins. A lot of my patter is about stuff I've picked up here and there, including these old coins. If I was in a bar and doing something casual for friends, I'd borrow the coins. If it's for a show, then I bring our the nice props. If I were younger, I could see how the coins may look out of place. I have not found any real difference in terms of people thinking the coins were gaffed between peace dollars and toonies. They think the coins are gaffed until/unless they're examined.

    I have giant hands, and toonies just can't be seen in them. Especially if there's any kind of crowd building. Also, vanishing a big old Peace dollar looks more impossible than vanishing something smaller.

    re:canadian halves

    Just visit a coin dealer - the common dates are not very high above their face value. The 1967 coins have a howling wolf on the reverse, and look rather cool (they're silver as opposed to clad copper, so the '67's are pricier). You might even be able to get some through your bank, as they're still circulating currency.

    As for 70's coins looking dirtier, it's because of the composition. Up to 1964, US currency was minted in 90% sliver, 10% copper. After that, they went with a copper core clad in nickel. In Canada, I believe it was 80% silver, 20% copper until 1967.

    Also, "soft coins" (or 'slicks' to coin collectors) means "worn down." Older silver coins that were in circulation a long time have the relief worn down, so that the faces become slick. They're called soft coins as the faces can slide against one another quietly. Ask your coin dealer if they have any "junk silver" you can look at, and those will be the soft coins.

    To clean coins, ketchup, vinegar, or lemon juice all work.
    OmnipresentCoins likes this.
  20. Jbutterfield you know yours stuff!! cheers!!

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