Cups and Balls

Cups and Balls Magic Reviews

Guest Reviewer Tom Fenton


 Place your mouse on the above picture for a close up view

scs shellsProduct: School for Scoundrels Antique Copper Shells

Maker: School for Scoundrels

Price:    $52.50

Overview:cups and balls cups and ballscups and ballscups and ballscups and balls 5/5


What's Included?:

The box contained the shells, a shot glass, a set of “perfect peas” and a suede bag to hold everything.

Delivery Time / Packaging:

After mailing Frank from the Ambitious Card, he told me that he had these  in stock and would send them out straight away and he gave me a tracking number so that I could follow their progress. The shells arrived within nine days.  On opening the package I found that Frank had included some “extras”, more about these later.

Construction / Durability:

These shells look wonderful, they are made from pewter and plated with copper, the plating is then “antiqued” by a process that is unknown to me.

The weight of the shells make them a joy to use, each shell weighs approx. 1 3/4ozs giving a total weight of 5 1/8ozs.


thimble riggingIn use, the shells are easy to move around. The edges of the shells are all very smooth so there is no catching on the close-up mat. They can even be used on a hard surface such as glass, this is partly due to the “perfect peas” supplied.

The peas are a joy to work with, they vacate the shells with minimum effort and, due to the built in “Chanin Dip”, there is no visible lifting of the shell as the pea comes out.

The set includes some solid peas to substitute for the soft ones.


I wanted a set of shells to replace the Vernet shells that I had been practising with. After searching around for reviews of various shells, I found that the School for Scoundrels shells were a favourite with many magicians.  These shells, the “perfect peas” and the shot glass are a quality product and they have my highest recommendation.

To finish, the help that I received from Frank in choosing these shells, the extras that he put in the package and his customer service all amount to a first class buying experience.


The “extras” I mentioned were, a red pea for colour changes etc and a $100 poker chip.

Frank told me that the use of a chip tends to stop interested watchers “joining in “ with the “mark”.

I think that this is a good idea, watchers tend to guess that whatever shells the mark doesn’t pick contain the pea. They then think that they have won. Giving the mark a chip to “bet” with stops this.

3 shell gameThe red pea is a good idea. In a recent performance, I had one spectator who was sure he knew how the con was done. He challenged me to place the pea in any shell, move them around and he would know where it was.

I did this but I substituted the red pea. I let him guess the correct shell but when I revealed that the pea had changed colour he was astounded!

Available from: The Ambitious Card

Thanks Tom!

Please remember - This site is a free resource so please pass on your thanks by mentioning us when you place an order for anything.


© 2009 Cups and Balls Magic