Moonshine Monologues by Tom Stone

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Postby Tom Stone » 09/29/09 02:39 PM

Well, since the notebooks are far from empty...

I've made a new ebook again.
It is titled "Moonshine Monologues" and it mainly deal with The Multiplying Bottles, among other things.

It can be found at:

Comments and reviews are most welcome, both good and bad.
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Postby Jim Riser » 09/30/09 01:39 PM

Any performers interested in doing or possibly adding the multiplying bottles to their act could do no better than to get Tom's latest creation - "Moonshine Monologues".

Tom's original approach solves the problem of adding the 3rd nest and gets away from the usually seen presentation of the effect. You will like this material.

In addition, he describes a few possible modifications to the standard apparatus for those desiring to perform effects not available to all. Tom also builds upon Marconick's work and describes a novel routine with the apparatus. There is a totally new idea where the glass only travels, a clever idea adding a can into the mix, and a way of adding multiplying glasses to the routine.

Besides all of the great multiplying bottle goodies, Tom includes an interesting routine using flatware, some ideas on using audience cues, and a big "sleeper" effect entitled "Paperback Writer". This last item alone is worth the small fee that Tom asks.

If you are trying to be different in your presentation of the multiplying bottles, you NEED this manuscript.

I certainly recommend this latest item from Tom Stone.
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Postby Tom Stone » 09/30/09 11:02 PM

There were unfortunately a few things that came to my attention first after the ebook was published.

The corrections are:
  • Page 7: It says "slides upwards inside the bottle when it is placed over a bottle (Fig. 2)" in the final passage, but it should be "slides upwards inside the bottle when it is placed over a glass (Fig. 2)"
  • Page 9: Last line of the credits should be: The gaff have previously been used in other effects, notably in Michael Webers Silverwhere? (p. 76, The Topit Book, Michael Ammar, 1983).
  • Page 10: Thanks to an email from Levent, I got the correct credit: Marconick's Original Magic vol 1 (1967).
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Postby Pete Biro » 10/01/09 01:24 PM

Just been going over the Multiplying Bottles ideas Tom has put together in his downloadable file. He has taken an olde classic to a totally new level.

I have no idea how he could think of so many things never done before with a standard like the bottles.

Even if you don't go the bottles, this is well worth study to see how someone can THINK OUTSIDE THE BOTTLE. :cool:
Stay tooned.
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Postby Jim Riser » 10/01/09 07:41 PM

I have been asked to comment on the feasibility of actually making the apparatus modifications that Tom mentions in his Moonshine Monologues. To keep things simple, I'll go through items in the order presented in his monologue.

Stirring Up The Still utilizes a standard 9 bottle set of multiplying bottles with two covers. There are no modifications required for this practical and novel presentation of the effect. I will comment upon bottles in general though. Tom suggests the Harries set. I like this set better than any other set currently on the market. They look like bottles and are very well made. These bottles are not inexpensive but the price reflects the quality and work involved in making them.

Over the years there have been minor design changes to the bottles used in these sets. The earlier bottles were pieced together. The bottle from the shoulder to the top was spun. The body of the bottle was formed from rolled sheet and all was soldered together. The metals available did not allow spinning the complete bottle. Many P&L bottles were made like this, as well as, those from other makers.

With the availability of aluminum came the spun bottles we see today. There are no seams in the newer bottles. Various makers added holes in the back side of the bottle bodies for picking up more than one bottle in a set and even the glass all at one time. The very top of some bottles was left partially turned in to ease picking up a bottle or set with one finger in the neck. Liquid compartments have been added for starting with an empty glass and still doing the effect after filling it. Some makers even utilized an extra cylinder (tube) to resemble the bottle bottom 2/3's. Virtually any set will work fine for this routine of Tom's.

The inexpensive multiplying bottle sets currently seen everywhere utilizing two sets of four could be used easily if some work was done and another set bought. For these rather crudely spun bottles to be reliable and effective, the bottles should be sanded down wherever they fit too tightly. Set aside the smallest bottles in both sets as they does not look good at all. Only work with three sets of three made from two eight bottle sets. Once the bottles have been sanded to nest properly, I would powder coat them to resemble glass. Labels are a snap with the color laser printer.

Metal covers can be problematic as they scratch the finish from the bottles. Most performers have felt linings or several vertical felt strips inside the cylinders to help prevent damage. I really prefer the plastic felt lined covers for this effect. Wrap bottles in a layer of cloth when transporting to avoid wearing out the label and bottle coating.

Don't Stare At My Bottom suggests a modified inner bottle. This bottom could be spun from a heavier metal than the bottles (say copper) so that it would tend to slide easier due to the weight. The bug-a-boo on this modification is the rolled lip to retain the bottom piece. This lip really should be spun to get a smooth finish. I have an old set of Abbotts Topsy Turvy Bottles where the lip was merely bent in with pliers all around the rim. This is no where near as nice looking as a spun lip. Of course, this modification requires a nicely made inner bottle with fairly perpendicular sides. Spun bottles usually have a very slight taper to them for easy removal from the spinning chuck.

The Pianist's Cutlery requires a simply made gimmick which should pose no problems for anyone with a hacksaw and file.

Redneck Remedy requires using the outer two bottles from a couple nested sets. There are no modifications required here. You just need to make certain that there is no liquid load chamber in the bottles.

Glass Where? suggests a method for transporting the glass. The method shown is doable but could also be done using the rear finger holes in some tubes/bottle sets as when liquid is poured to fill a passe-passe glass. There is often more than one way to gimmick apparatus and one way is not necessarily better than another.

Audience Cues is the weakest part of this monologue. Here Tom explores cuing in the audience while a spectator is unaware of the cues. The ideas given are not fully developed and are a starting point for more experimentation. I have long felt that the colored transparent plexiglass clip boards could be used for this type of activity as the color of the plexi can be used as a filter for selective transmission of a message.

Glass-Bottle-Can is a very clever idea of adding a tin can to the bottle routine along with the usual bottles and glasses. This is fairly easy to make up and can easily be added to a bottle set. You would want to silence the can probably with a felt lining. The method shown is very workable. If your bottles and covers already have aligned holes in the rear, the same effects could be done utilizing these holes and your pinky finger.

Paperback Writer is an extremely intriguing idea for an amazing mental effect type of presentation. His method is a simple as it gets and can easily be prepared by anyone wanting to add this type of effect to their performance. People will buy in to this story line. I predict that many will use this idea.

Multiplying Glasses adds the effect of more and more glasses appearing from under the cover. This will work along the lines described and illustrated by Tom. The actual modification to the inner bottle would need to be made permanent and there would need to be slight design changes to make everything work correctly. The biggest change would be to add a stop for the piston to prevent it from falling out after the last glass was produced. This can easily be done by any one of several simple methods.

As always, Tom has come up with some original concepts and routine ideas worth studying and possibly adding to your performances.
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Postby Matthew Field » 10/02/09 05:25 AM

I was extremely impressed by Tom Stone's "Moonshine Monologues". He has taken a classic trick and rethought every aspect of it, from the introduction of the bottles -- in fact all the apparatus -- to an expansion of Marconick's idea of a ribbon around the nexk of a bottle. Here the ribbon appears, disappears, flies from tube to tube and winds up in the glass, where it again transposes!

Jim Riser found "Audience Cues" the weakest part of the monograph. I, on the other hand, found it entrancing. In fact, Angelo Carbone has developed a trick along these lines, about which I can obviously say no more as it is not yet released. Tom's ehe effect has to do with perception and cuing an assistant (or the entire audience, with the exception of the assistant).

Tom, as always, has provide a massive number of excellent illustrations, and his imagination and inventiveness are inspiring.

For those who want to progress beyond close-up to parlor or stage, or even want to movetheir thinking along several notches, this is highly recommended.

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Postby Levent » 10/02/09 11:44 AM

I download this e-book a few days ago and I love it!

It's got some great ideas and routines for the Multiplying Bottles, a stage effect with tremendous commercial appeal, that is usually performed with Ken Brooke's Multiplying Martini routine. I am thrilled to see that Mr. Stone has taken this trick to another level.

I have read most of Tom Stone's e-books and I must say that the man never fails to impress me with his clever "Outside of the Box" thinking.


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