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