EFFECT - You seemingly show your hands completely empty, borrow a coin, have it signed, and then visibly bend it at your fingertips, and give it back to them as a permanently impossible reminder of what just occurred. Without further ado, here it is, the ULTIMATE COIN BEND!
PREPARATION- To prepare for this effect, you need a regular pair of pliers, a pair of needlenose pliers, a state quarter, and a playing card. First, tear the card in half shortways. Then, fold the remaining half in half shortways. Place the quarter inside this fold (the card is simply here to prevent the coin from getting any marks on it as you’re bending it with the pliers).
Now, you’re going to take both pairs of pliers, grab the coin THROUGH THE CARD, and give it a slight bend. You want to only bend the top third of the coin, not down the middle. This is why you’re using a regular pair of pliers, and a needlenose pair, instead of just two regular pairs. This way, it’s much easier to put a bend in a small portion of the coin. When you bend it, you want the hand holding the regular pliers to remain stationary, and the needlenose hand to be the hand that actually moves down to put the bend in. Also, you don’t want to have a very large bend. A bend of about 15 or 20 degrees is more than enough. If you did this part right, the top third of the coin should be bent just slightly. If the bend is too large, simply either take some of the bend out with the pliers, or start over with a new coin. It is very important to use a STATE QUARTER for this effect.
PRESENTATION- To perform this effect, memorize the state that’s on the quarter you have prepared, wear a long sleeve shirt or jacket, put the coin into the left sleeve, and put a black permanent marker in your right pants pocket (yes, sleeving IS required for this effect, but stick with me). Ask a group of spectators if you can borrow some change. They’ll all pull out some change, an as they are doing this, look around for someone with a state quarter. It doesn’t matter what state, just look for a state quarter, not one of the old ones. Also, make sure this quarter doesn’t have any unusual markings on it that would give the effect away. Take the quarter from them, and examine it. Proclaim “Oh, West Virginia, I don’t have this one yet.” Only you don’t say West Virginia, you are simply miscalling the name of their quarter, and saying the state on the quarter you have up your sleeve. This will act as a great convincer that the bent coin is really their own coin at the end of the effect. Now, with the coin in your right hand, open both hands, to
show them empty (being careful not to let the quarter fall out of your left sleeve). Now, all you’re going to do is a false transfer. If you don’t know this move, you’re simply going to act as if you’re dropping the coin from your right hand into your left, as you secretly retain it in your right hand. Once you have done this, close your left hand like you really have the coin in there, open your fingers just slightly, and extend your left arm straight down. This will cause the coin to fall out of your sleeve and into your fist. This is the hardest move in the routine, but it’ll come with practice. As soon as you’ve done this, reach into your right pocket with your right hand, secretly place their quarter in your pocket, and remove the permanent marker. Hand them the marker, and ask them to sign “their” quarter. As they’re uncapping the marker, you’re going to bring both hands up to shield the coin, and secretly adjust it so that you’re holding it between the thumb (on bottom), and the first finger (on top) of your left hand, with the bend on top and pointing inwards (towards yourself). Also, tilt this hand very slightly downward. Believe it or not, but in this position, they won’t be able to tell that the coin is bent. Tell them that you’re going to told the coin for them as they sign it. After it’s signed, simply readjust the coin so that you’re holding it by the bend with the first finger and the thumb (hiding the bend), but the bend is facing OUTWARDS instead of inwards, and is on the BOTTOM instead of the top. Now, all you’re going to do is create the illusion of it bending, the real work is already done. To do this, simply hold the coin at face level, and slowly (very slowly), slide your thumb up slowly. This will cause the bend to come more and more into view, and at the same time cause the top of the coin to look like it’s bending downwards. As soon as the bend is in full view, ask them to hold out their hands, and let the coin fall into their open hands for them to keep.