by Janet Harris on July 26, 2013

* Please remember that the basic gimmick is not meant to be stared at for more than a few seconds. As soon as the card appears, all attention goes to the name. Two seconds later, you should be turning the card over to show the other side. Also note that when the deck is held and viewed at the proper angle, that the gimmick is close to invisible. A common mistake with the Hawk is for the performer to stare at the gimmick without accounting for angles and to then assume that everyone can see the gimmick. But for additional peace of mind, check out the next few tips.

* From Chris Kavanaugh: Use a Sharpie to draw a line down the middle of the card (from end to end) and put a small “x” next to it (like in a contract). Tell spectator to "sign here." This is not necessary but gives you maximum cover for the gaff if you want to perform extra close to your spectator.

* From Patrick Wolford: Openly crease the signed card by folding it in half (the long way), then unfold it. Comment that this "secret origami" crease enables you to do something astonishing. When the signed, creased card magically appears on top of the deck, the crease will blend in to hide the gimmick.
* Easiest way to start is to have the gaff on the bottom of the deck before performance. You can also have the gaff anywhere else in the deck...then simply cut or shuffle it to the bottom when ready.
*Even easier PH set up: Start with the gaff stuck to matching card in a front pocket. Spec selects card from normal deck. You give her a Sharpie to sign the card and turn your back to make sure you don't see the card or her signature. While your back is turned, secretly grab the gaff card set from your pocket, place it onto the face of the deck, and open up the gaff. When all is ready, suddenly turn around to see what the spectator is doing -- "Sorry, I just had to know." Use this or a similar line. The little joke conveniently gets you all set from a normal deck.
* For the in-the-hands version: Option to the sticky stuff is to use double stick tape.
*From Darryl Vanamburg: He makes the gimmick out of a double back card and does the entire effect with a face down deck and a face down signed card.This way there is no need to locate and position the normal card that matches the gimmick.
*Using this double back gimmick, Darryl also does an effect where he pretends to snatch off the signature. He simply opens up the gimmick in the action of pretending to slide off the signature. This leaves you with a normal looking unsigned card. He then "swallows the signature" and pretends to spit it back onto the card as he triggers the gimmick.
*Instead of having the spectator sign both sides of the card, have the spectator only sign the face, then you sign the back. So now when the card appears on top, your name is showing. You then flip over the card to reveal spectator's signature. This creates a little more of a "dramatic build."


*Alex Slemmer's handling

Set-up: Attach the gaff to a matching card (normal starting position). Place this card on the bottom of the deck so the gaff opens towards the left fingers.
Performance: The deck is in normal dealing position in your left hand.
The left little finger gets a "pinky break" to partially open the gaff. From here, spread the deck between your hands for a selection.
After the card is taken, square the deck. Keep the first finger along the front edge to hide any of the flap opening). The deck is just above the table as your little finger opens the gaff far enough for the inside corner of the deck to touch the table. As the left hand moves to put the deck on the table, allow the weight of the deck to open the gaff completely. You can now pick the deck off the table, with your thumb keeping the gaff opened flat.
*In-the-hands version: You can secretly open the gaff the same way, but place the deck into your other hand instead of on a table.
After a card is selected, take the cards above the selection in a spread. This spread will be added back to the deck and used as cover for the opening of the gaff. As the right hand approaches the left with this spread of cards, keep the spread at the front edge of the pack.The spread extends about half an inch over the front edge of the deck. Square the spread on top of the deck. (This adds extra cover at the front edge and hides any flap movement.) As you do this,the right fingertips are inserted into the break and the left hand pushes the deck into the right hand. As the deck rides over the fingers, the gaff naturally opens onto the right fingertips.
The gaff is now opened flat. The signed selection can now be inserted faceup "into the center of the deck." The remainder of the effect can be performed as described on the DVD. Easiest way to clean up is to drop the deck into your pocket while the signed card is being examined.
* Pen Cap Bluff: Give spec Sharpie to sign card, but hang onto the cap and hold it against the face of the deck(where the gaff is positioned). The face of the deck is toward you. As you casually adjust the cap, you can easily open the gaff. Anyone watching will just assume you moved the cap.
* If you're looking for the perfect anytime, anywhere all angles version of Hawk 2.0, please try out the"Lucky Card" version included with the set. Even though it has a different "look," you may be surprised to discover that it has the same powerful impact as the other variations of Hawk 2.0. All is well.


These tips are for The Hawk gimmick.