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Self-Working

Self-working is not the best term but it is the one used most often to describe tricks which do not require any sleight-of-hand. The better description is be sleightless. Although these tricks are typically much easier to learn because they do not require any proficiency in moves, they still need practice in presentation, timing and spectator handling.

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Paul Curry

Out of this World by Paul CurryPaul Curry invented this effect when he was just 25 years old. It is one of the most well known and probably most often performed card effects today. A classic through and through. An incredibly strong effect paired with a most simple method. You can't find much better card tricks.

The effect as Curry describes it:

The performer shuffles a pack of cards and starts to deal them into two piles - the red cards in one pile, the blacks in the other. After a few cards have been dealt into each pile the deal is stopped and the performer explains that were he to continue to deal in this manner...
2009 / 3 / 19
$4.00

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David Devlin

Overboard by David DevlinThis incredible routine is pretty much a card act all by itself. There are several mind-blowing phases, and it is all done with a normal deck of cards. There are absolutely no gaffs whatsoever. The deck and the card box are the only "props" used, so you can have this on your person at all times, and be completely prepared to blow 'em away!

What began as a simple single-phase effect by Aldo Colombini, David expanded and added to it with inspirations from Aldo, Paul Harris, and Max Maven.

The aspect of this routine that David likes most is the "hands-off" nature of it. The spectator does pretty much all of the work....

2014 / 11 / 9
$5.00

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Stephen Tucker

Paradox by Stephen TuckerThis is an incredible topological curiosity with a playing card and a third!

Four odd shaped pieces, cut from Bicycle playing cards, are tabled. You explain that three of the pieces marry together to form the shape of a complete playing card. The extra piece is only supplied in case of emergencies (i.e. if you lose a piece!) The extra 'emergency' piece is shown to be the same shape as one of the other pieces and is then set aside.

Strangely, although you easily solved the 'apparently' simple jig-saw puzzle, no one else can!

Comes with a bonus routine: Bomb$hell Deluxe.

1st edition...

2008 / 6 / 7
$12.00

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David Britland

Parallax: a topological miracle by David BritlandHow many effects do you know that use only one playing card? Well Parallax is just that.

The performer shows a playing card (any size works from jumbo card down to regular size) . A spectator holds the card face up. He grips it firmly and does not let go until the effect is over. Nevertheless the performer turns the card face down, visibly, right in front of the spectator's eyes. Yes, the card turns over whilst the spectator is holding it. It looks quite impossible. Only one card is used and the effect is performed openly and without cover of any kind. It's a topological miracle that you...

2012 / 12 / 14
$7.00

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Aldo Colombini

Perpetual Motion Poker Deal by Aldo ColombiniThis effect was created by Bruce Cervon who gave Aldo permission to teach and release it. It is a wonderfully simple and unique poker deal demonstration that never has to be reset, because at the end of the routine the deck is ready for a repeat - ideal for table hoppers. Uses a regular deck of cards with an additional set of aces.

Aldo also teaches a number of easy false cuts and shuffles which you can use in combination with this demonstration, but they are not necessary. With a good presentation this can be just as effective as other story routines, such as "Sam and Moe" or "Sam and the Bellhop",...

2017 / 2 / 21
$10.00

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MP4 (video)

Mike Kempner

Photographic Memory Experiment by Mike KempnerHave you ever wanted to hypnotize someone to have a photographic memory? Now, you can create this illusion using a fantastic principle applied in an innovative way. This effect uses only a deck of playing cards (which can be borrowed, no set-up required at all...in fact, you don't even touch the cards). After the spectator randomly shuffles the deck, you ask her to quickly glance at each card. Under the premise of a hypnotic induction, you then cause her to remember the location of any cards. Let's assume she is "tested" to locate, for example, the 2 of hearts and the 7 of spades. If she says...
2014 / 6 / 22
$4.00

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Aldo Colombini

Please Hold by Aldo ColombiniAfter the huge success of the first DVD on tricks you can perform over the phone (Can You Hear Me Now) here comes the sequel with new exciting stunning routines to perform over the phone (or for live audiences). This time, not only with cards but with other objects as well.

Here’s the contents and the contributors:

...
2011 / 6 / 4
$10.00

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MP4 (video)

Michael Daniels

Poker Deals by Michael DanielsPoker Deals includes two self-working card effects, ideally suited to performing for spectators who are familiar with the rules of poker. Both effects utilize the StayCard Principle and were first published in OCD and Other Effects: The StayCard Principle.

Ten Card Poker Deal Variation

A procedural variation on Arthur Buckley's celebrated Ten Card Poker Deal. The magician and a spectator are each dealt five cards (either person can deal). The spectator decides whether to keep his cards, or whether the cards should be mixed by dealing again. No matter how many times the dealing is repeated before the cards are examined, the magician's hand wins....

2019 / 5 / 2
$5.00

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Nick Conticello

Potpourri 2: More Impromptu, Sleightless, Mathematical Tricks by Nick ConticelloAfter seeing several effects from this ebook, author and collector Doug Edwards said:
"The stuff you do with a shuffled deck and one or two key cards borders on the miraculous!"
1. TEN-IS MATCH: The performer removes ten matching pairs from the deck. These are mixed by both the performer and spectator and divided about in half by the spectator. Yet somehow all the pairs line up. Based on ideas of Howard Adams and Gene Finnell.

2. TALONS OF THE HAWK: Two volunteers each think of a card from a group of ten. The packets are lost in the deck by the volunteers themselves. The performer...

2016 / 10 / 1
$12.00

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Nick Conticello

Potpourri 3 by Nick ConticelloA Further Collection of Impromptu, Sleightless, Mathematical Tricks

Nick Conticello is proud to present the third and final installment of the Potpourri series. Herewith is another collection of impromptu, sleightless, mathematical effects with cards. Each book has a theme, and this one is no exception. The entire ebook is devoted to what Nick calls the Australian Shuffle. (You may refer to it as the Down/Under Deal.)

The present work is concerned with three placement concepts. George Sands devised one in the mid-Twentieth Century. Nick published the second in Tarbell 7, and he is releasing...

2016 / 12 / 11
$12.00

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Nick Conticello

Potpourri Bundle by Nick Conticello
2017 / 3 / 28
$30.00

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Nick Conticello

Potpourri: A Collection of Impromptu Sleightless Mathematical Tricks by Nick ConticelloAuthor and collector Doug Edwards said:
"I know a good trick when I see one, and KNOW-ALL NEALE is a good trick! It's impromptu and direct. And I like A COUNT, A BILL as well. The divination of the three digits comes as a complete surprise. Two real winners."

Tarbell Course contributor Nick Conticello returns with a new selection of close-up magic designed to be performed for small groups of friends or acquaintances.

1. Know-All Neale: 3 coin divination with fourth coin kicker

2. A Count, A Bill: Based on "It's the Principle " (Bob Longe, Sept. 2001 Linking Ring) with bill used...

2016 / 6 / 28
$12.00

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Aldo Colombini

Pre-Deck-Ability by Aldo ColombiniAn unbelievable prize winning routine with a regular deck of cards!

A stunning self-working routine. Three different predictions are taken from a pad of paper and given out, one to each of three spectators. A deck of cards is shuffled and cut into two halves. A spectator cuts a portion from one half, turns it face up, and shuffles it together with the other face down half creating a topsy-turvy condition (a packet of face up and face down cards.) The spectator cuts any amount of cards from this face up and face down portion, turns it over, and shuffles it with the remainder of the deck which...

2011 / 5 / 12
$10.00

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MP4 (video)

Gerard Zitta

Predestination by Gerard ZittaThis effect is a variation of an effect called ACAT (Any Card At Any Time), extracted from CLUE ebook. It can be presented with playing cards, or special cards (like the Vernet PSImbol deck, or movies (like Directors's cut or Screen test), French postcards, etc.), or just with blank index cards or your own business cards (with drawings, symbols, words, numbers, etc. on the back). It is not a card trick, but rather a mystery or paradox.

It is hands-off, automatic, self-working, can be done over the phone or sight unseen, stand up, close up or stage (with jumbo cards). It is easy, practical, and...

2016 / 1 / 29
$10.00

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George Armstrong

Premonition: an amazing mental card routine by George Armstrong[Eddie Joseph and George Armstrong both published this effect in 1949 under the same name: Premonition. The effects are identical and the methods are also pretty much identical except some minor details. Since George Armstrong describes his inspiration and when and where he developed it, while Eddie Joseph does not, I believe George Armstrong to be the inventor of this method. George Armstrong's inspiration was an effect from Greater Magic by Bill McCaffrey. But already Hofzinser has a similar routine Domination of Thought from his Card Conjuring.

A spectator names a card. He is asked to take a pack of cards from the table, remove them...

2015 / 5 / 6
$4.00

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Jon Racherbaumer

Processean Princess by Jon RacherbaumerHenry Hardin's plot has been around for 107 years and his initial three methods are explained in The Art of Magic (1909). Card tricks of this kind were atypical when Hardin devised his trick. During his time, spectators physically picked cards. They seldom, if ever, mentally selected them. Because only five cards are used in "The Princess Card Trick," Hardin strengthened the challenge by finding the mental selection by tactile means while the five "possibilities" were in his pocket.

This is how the his trick appeared to audiences: Five cards are shown to a spectator who is asked to think of one of them....

2018 / 3 / 25
$12.00

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Unknown Mentalist

Propless ACAAN by Unknown Mentalist
"I really like how you made a psychological force more surefire. It is really an interesting concept. Well done." - Luca Volpe

"At it's core this is a VERY direct way to verbally make a spectator think of a specific number. It's a useful and clever idea to know and an important contribution to the area of propless mentalism." - Marc Paul

This is absolutely propless ACAAN. No deck. No props at all. And this is a self working propless ACAAN. Yes, you've read it right. Just you the performer and the participant on a voice call. That's it.

The effect from the participant's view: The performer sends some...

2020 / 6 / 14
$18.00

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(Benny) Ben Harris

PSI-Poker by (Benny) Ben HarrisPSI-POKER is the latest creation from Ben Harris (co-creator of 2010’s hit X-RAY).

This new effect is totally self-working, requiring no skill or gaffs. (Unless you are calling 'peeking the bottom card' a move.) The secret is ancient, but it’s never been used in this manner before. Magic’s leading historians and card experts have confirmed this claim. (To be precise, it is a new property of an old principle. Very clever indeed.)

So, what is PSI-POKER?

The effect is a multiple prediction of how a game of “Texas Hold ‘em” will play out from a shuffled deck. You hand a prediction...

2011 / 1 / 19
$20.00

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Dale A. Hildebrandt

Psychic Self by Dale A. HildebrandtPsychic Self is a three-phase card routine wherein you NEVER touch the deck. The deck is borrowed and shuffled multiple times. Yet, the routine is entirely self-working and will work the majority of the time. No risk; no reward. Yes, there is a chance of one of the phases not working; and even lower chance that none of the routine will work. There is a simple scripting for why one or all the phases did not work. The majority of time, you will have a three-phase miracle routine.

The scripting of the routine is what really sells each individual effect. The methods are essentially the effect...

2016 / 3 / 19
$3.00

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Nick Conticello

Pyramid Prophecies by Nick ConticelloFrom the introduction:
This ebook is a bit of a departure for me. The material is mathematical, but it need not be performed with playing cards. It can be performed with pencil and paper close-up, or with a blackboard or a dry-erase white board in platform or stage settings. Thus it can be employed in situations when the use of playing cards would be inappropriate. However, I will describe these effects with playing cards as that is how I use them.

The basic idea is that the performer predicts the sum of a seemingly random array of cards or numbers. The spectator has quite a bit of control...

2015 / 8 / 13
$12.00

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