All posts by carruth00

SNAG – by Ben Howard

SNAG – By Ben Howard

SNAG is Ben Howard’s take on the classic Ring to Necklace. Although ‘Northbound’ by Sean Field and ‘Closure’ by Robert Smith, Peter Eggink and Paul Harris are similar effects.. they require somewhat more extensive set-up. SNAG can go from performance mode to standby status, ready for your next performance, in less than a minute. Ben says he can do it in seconds.. with a little practice.

The performance is this… You asks to borrow a ring, and it should go without saying that a ring with a diamond or other valuable stone should never be used, and after a small amount of patter the ring vanishes from your closed hand. Next, you slowly produce the ring from inside your shirt.. attached to your necklace. You can actually allow the spectator to gently pull the ring and chain through the buttons of your shirt.. and remove the ring from the clain once you’ve ‘unfastened’ it.

Ben Howard has created a gimmick that allows the spectator’s ring to find its way onto a necklace with a very minimal amount of effort. The gimmick makes it possible. The guys at Sansmind Magic provide the video production and demonstrations.. both professional quality. The video runs about 20 minutes, and although I wish for a longer video, there is actually no reason to record a longer video. Everything you need to know is included, the video instructions are detailed, and the gimmick is dependable. As with any magic effect, you should definitely practice the simple moves to get your timing and positioning down pat before your first performance.

I will tell you this.. it is assumed you know how to perform a French Drop. The FD is both shown and discussed, but it is the only method used.. and there are a number of methods around. This is NOT the fault of Sansmind… There are many different ways to perform a false transfer of a ring from one hand to another and there are many different sources available to teach you anything to need to know if you don’t want to use the French Drop. Actually, off the top of my head, you could easily sew a wedding band type ring into a silk, hold the ring in your left hand, cover it with the silk while palming the spectator’s ring, allow the spectator to ‘hold’ his/her ring through the silk.. and at the right moment, you pull on the silk.. shaking it in the air to show the ring has vanished.. and then producing it on your necklace. Yes, this method is probably 300 years old.. but who cares! It works perfectly if you aren’t comfortable performing a false transfer in front of multiple spectators.

Everything you need to perform SNAG comes with the DVD.. including the gimmick and the necklace.

Note this.. you will need to wear a button up shirt to perform this effect. It’s just the nature of the beast. I don’t see any way it can be performed in a tee shirt, although you might be able to perform in a polo style shirt.. ( a pullover shirt with a couple of buttons at the top ). When it’s time for the moment of reveal, you have to have a second of ‘privacy’ to give the gimmick a chance to do its thing. It appears as if you simply reached inside your shirt to grasp your chain. Here is a short video of Ben Howard performing SNAG in a quick demonstration mode… just to give you an idea of how it looks..

Also, there are performance angles. You probably won’t want anyone to your far right. Since the gimmick is located just inside your buttons, there is a possibility it can be seen. Anyone to your left and straight on will not see anything out of the norm. I don’t see this as a problem.. unless you perform surrounded.

Depending on your comfort level performing a false transfer, I would put SNAG somewhere between beginner and intermediate. The gimmick does the work.. but YOU have make it look good. Performed proficiently, you can certainly make it look as good as real. I would recommend SNAG for anyone who performs walk around or table hopping and wants a good, quick, effect with an impossible quality.

$24.95 from magic dealers who carry the Murphy’s Magic line of professional products.

Reviewed by Rick Carruth

KEY PREDICTION – By Richard Griffin

Key Prediction – by Richard Griffin
Murphy’s Magic

Key Prediction by Richard Griffin - Trick

KEY PREDICTION uses a key fob to complete a prediction routine based on an Al Koran effect. The performer shows an audience member several items; specifically a key, a coin, a phone, and a credit card.. all items normally carried by a spectator or two. The spectator is asked to eliminate one of the items. It’s a totally free choice. Then, a second and a third are eliminated.. leaving only one item on the table. Everyone agrees there was no forcing involved and the remaining choice was a totally free one.

Despite this.. the performer focuses attention on a set of keys and an attached key fob resting on the table from before the initial selection. The performer is correct.. always correct. Thankfully, there are NO multiple outs and NO forcing. The item fairly selected by the spectator is the item shown on the back of the key fob.

This is a nice mental magic effect that can be performed during walk-around or stand up performances. It would work nicely during table hopping, as you really don’t need much room. Based on an idea initially created by Al Koran, Key Prediction depends on a little bit of manipulation to go with a gaffed key fob, allowing the performer to control the outcome with a minimum amount of effort.

I’m not going to say you can perform Key Prediction straight out the package.. but the ‘manipulation’ is not a worry for virtually any level of magician. You should be performing successfully within 30 minutes or so. It’s a matter of getting comfortable with gripping the components. In all fairness, the item is listed as ‘intermediate’ magic.. but I honestly feel any level can perform Key Prediction with a little practice.

Reset is about a second or two. It can be accomplished facing the spectators without a need to ‘hide’. (Don’t confuse ‘hide’ with ‘conceal’..)

In addition to the key, phone, coin and credit card reveal, the key fob also allows you to perform a circle, square, wavy line and star reveal.. the traditional ESP symbols.. minus the circle. I appreciate the flexibility and the added reveal items as you can easily carry the four ESP cards in your pocket to expedite the performance, particularly if you’re performing it a number of times as with walk-around. Mr Griffin also includes a blank option for you to create your own reveal. When combined with other mental effects, this can be a very powerful feature. Use an erasable pen and you can change the ‘blank’ side to anything you want..

Your package will include the special key fob, the necessary gimmicks, and an instructional DVD. My only complaint is the DVD could have been a little longer. With a run time of about 18 minutes it covers all the basics well.. but perhaps it could have included some additional ideas. That’s OK. Your mind will race with possibilities once you get your hands on Key Prediction.

I will recommend Key Prediction, as it does what it says.. and it allows you to do what it advertises. We all wish a new gimmick could contain some type of true magic and would make us look amazing with no effort on our part.. but I have yet to review such an item.. darn it. If you put the effort into Key Prediction, I do promise you’ll have a nice little pocket effect that won’t gather dust in your ‘magic box of unfulfilled dreams’.

Available for $34.95 for magic companies that carry the Murphy’s Magic line of products..

Review by Rick Carruth..

Magic Roadshow #187


Hi Everyone..

A NEW Magic Roadshow Journal of Magic has published! You can get your copy here….



  • Magical Entertainment: Part 3 – by Paul A. Lelekis
    It Is Painfully Obvious to Me…and Probably to You…#3 – Marty
    Openers and Closers 2 – A Review
    Openers and Closers 3 – A Review
    Stewart James – The Magic Of Stewart James – by David O’Connor
    EUGENE BURGER – June 1, 1939-August 8, 2017
    Only Slightly Sleightly – A Review
    Eclectica – John Carey – A Review
    The Doug Henning Project – Resource
    Clip Steal Color Change | Card Trick Tutorial – 52Kards
    Making A Two Man Mind Reading Act Affordable
    Magic Is An ‘Exact’ Science – According to Bill
    Mentalism – According to Harlan
    Mentalism That Fools Every Time – Video Tutorial –
    Find Out What’s Inside My ‘Magic Show’ Bag – Jay Sankey
    3 Free Magic eBook from Jay… From our Archives
    5 Expert Card Magic Trick ‘Control’s’ Revealed! – Video
    Shade – The Lost Tape
    Harry Maurer presents… OVER 100 CARD TRICKS – Free PDF from our Archives
    VANISH Magic Magazine #36
    Magic Trick Reviews… Free to Everyone Facebook Group
    Other Important Stuff..