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ParaSailor

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Reply with quote  #1 
I recently bought a trick that came with a video detailing how to make the required gaff.  I've made several attempts and can't seem to get the hang of "splitting cards"  Does anyone know if there is a trick to it or does it just take a lot of practice to get it right?
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Steven Youell

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Reply with quote  #2 
Use fine/very fine sandpaper and slowly sand off the desired layers. I've done that for years. I never liked the tiny wrinkles that come from peeling cards. Just be careful to sand evenly as the edges of the card tend to get more action than the other parts of the surface. That should work depending on what gaff you're trying to make. I used this for double backers and double facers before they started printing them in high quality.
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Mbreggar

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thatโ€™s a great idea!
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Steven Youell

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Reply with quote  #4 
Forgot to mention that if you only sand one of the layers off you can make a thick card so you can find your double back/facer by feel. When I was doing this, seemed to be only 3 layers so I'd sand a layer off each card. Then I'd use a flexible adhesive (spray on) and carefully put them together. This gave me a gaff slightly thicker than a regular card which you can find by feel.
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ParaSailor

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Reply with quote  #5 
Steven, that is great advice, thank you.  Unfortunately I haven't even got to that particular part.  I've followed the directions on peeling the cards but have torn every singe one that I've done.  I feel like I must be starting wrong because it barely splits before it tears.
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MagicTK

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Reply with quote  #6 
Parasailing, I think Steven is saying sand the layers off rather than peeling them apart.

Steven, this is a great idea!  Thanks for sharing it with us.  I also like the idea of sanding just enough to get whatever thickness is needed or desired for the final card glued together.

Tom
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ParaSailor

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Reply with quote  #7 
Tom,

I'm glad you pointed that out, I completely missed it the first time I read the response.  I'll have to head down to the shop and borrow some sand paper to try this.
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Steven Youell

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Reply with quote  #8 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ParaSailor
Tom,I'm glad you pointed that out, I completely missed it the first time I read the response.  I'll have to head down to the shop and borrow some sand paper to try this.

It will take a bit of practice to get the right grit and evenly sand. But you can make killer gaffs. I even have a method of aligning them but I'll have to think about how to explain it.

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ParaSailor

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Reply with quote  #9 
I made my first attempt with sanding last night and the results look promising [smile].  I handled two of the cards that were sanded down as if they were one and couldn't tell the difference in size between the set of two and the untouched card from the box.  When I get a chance to put the cards together I'll give another update.

As a reference back for myself and anyone wanting to duplicate the results.  I used 80 grit to sand and 180 so finish.
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Intensely Magic

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Reply with quote  #10 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ParaSailor
I recently bought a trick that came with a video detailing how to make the required gaff.  I've made several attempts and can't seem to get the hang of "splitting cards"  Does anyone know if there is a trick to it or does it just take a lot of practice to get it right?


I doubt you want to spend this kind of money, but I've heard good things about this:

https://www.theperfectshuffle.com/Corner-Splitter-Jig/

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ParaSailor

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Reply with quote  #11 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Intensely Magic


I doubt you want to spend this kind of money, but I've heard good things about this:

https://www.theperfectshuffle.com/Corner-Splitter-Jig/



It is definitely something I would consider but if I'm going to go out and spend some real money, I would love to find a way to just print and make my own cards so I can do other gaff's that I already use often that can't be made from a normal deck of cards.  Unfortunately I haven't been able to find a real solution for printing my own cards at home.
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Steven Youell

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Reply with quote  #12 
OK now here's the hard part. Get a spray can of flexible adhesive and a box that isn't too tall-- like a shoe box.
Spray the first card on the back and then carefully put the card face down in the corner of the box, tilting the box a little so the card settles into the corner.
Then spray the other card and stick the cards together using the corner of the box as a guide.

If that's not clear then I'll try again.

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ParaSailor

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Reply with quote  #13 
It seems pretty clear to me, I just wish I had read your post 30 minutes ago.  I glued the first gaff and although it isn't quite finished drying, I already get the feeling that it isn't going to come out as well as it could have if I had followed your advice.  It is a 4 part gaff so getting everything together with the glue on a flat table was quite the challenge.  Oh well, it will at least give me something to practice with.
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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #14 
There's always the "old fashioned" way - split the cards. It's not really very difficult. Someone has a video out on it. But I forget who it is. I learned from a Dave Gripenwalt (spelling?) booklet. 

I haven't done it in a while. It's possible that the newer cards are made in such a way that the process is difficult. I'll do some research in that regard.

Todd Lassen makes a brass jig for the purpose of getting perfect alignment when you put the two parts together. Rubber cement and spray adhesive are one approach. The other one is photo mount. You can buy a sheet of this stuff and cut it to fit. You then apply heat. The cards made this way are often a bit still. But Gary Plants has a method that produces excellent results. I don't think his process has been made public, though.

When I was really into making gaffs, I'd split an entire deck while watching TV. I still have boxes of split cards. But they've gotten old and are not really workable any longer.

Mike
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ParaSailor

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Reply with quote  #15 
Mike,

Thank you for the info.  I had tried actually splitting them, the video I had purchased went over how to do it but I had gone through about ten cards with no success so I came here for insight.  The input that everyone has given has been awesome and helpful.  I was able to use the one I made that didn't come out well as a training aid and it still looked decent despite not being lined up correctly.  I will have to research Todd Lassens jig but being until I can get something like that I'm going to try the box idea.  I'm not doing anything professional quality but it would be nice to get there one day.

Dave
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Evan S.

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Reply with quote  #16 
Marty "Martini" Grams has a terrific DVD on this subject. I originally learned from it. The Lassen gaffing genii is what I use, with DMT (dry mount tissue). I also recently picked up a corner splitter from Eoin O'Hare that works like a charm.
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Steven Youell

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Reply with quote  #17 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ParaSailor
It seems pretty clear to me, I just wish I had read your post 30 minutes ago.

Sorry about that.

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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #18 
Thanks for the reminder Evan. Yes, The Martini DVD is good. The Lassen item isn't cheap, though. But you can get good alignment without it. And the DMT is a good way to go. Good info!

Mike
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ParaSailor

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Reply with quote  #19 
Steven,

Not you're fault.  I'm chocking it up as a learning experience and already working on the next gaff.
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Bmat

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Reply with quote  #20 
I've heard wonderful things about the corner splitter.   I also really like Mr. Youell's idea.  I took a long time learning how to split cards and I got pretty good at it, but I was never satisfied with putting them together. 
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Mbreggar

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Reply with quote  #21 
Gary Plant's video is on Penguin
http://www.penguinmagic.com/p/4416

Some great ideas ... but I still can't split without tearing!
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Mike Powers

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Reply with quote  #22 
Mbreggar - try this: once you have started to peel at the corner, peel the single layer from the double layer as follows - hold the double layer down on a flat, hard surface and peel the single layer very slowly. Keep downward pressure close to the edge where peeling has already taken place.

Try alternating the ends that are peeling away. Be delicate and slow. Be very careful when you get to the corner at the short edge. Once you get around the corner, it's easier to not tear for the rest of the way.

I don't know if any of this makes sense without photos or video?

I haven't seen Gary's penguin stuff, but he definitely knows how to do it.

Also, try different "vintages" of decks. I recall one deck that split like butter and another that I couldn't even get one card to split.

Mike
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Dave Campbell

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Reply with quote  #23 
I'd say it's a 'knack' -- Mike's post about holding the one part flat on the table was the trick I learned from somewhere a while back. I peel up the part I'm not going to use, so there's no 'wrinkles' in what I'm keeping. After doing  few, I can pull them apart pretty well.

That "Corner Splitter" -- what that thing does is split the corner so you don't have to tap it on the table? Guess I'd have to be doing a LOT of them to decide to buy that -- even as a confirmed hobbyist ๐Ÿ˜‰

Overall, I've come to an agreement with myself that there are people that do this reasonably cheaply and they do it all the time -- I looked into buying the tools for the DMT stuff, and I put that in the same category that I put the corner splitter. I might do on-offs like thick cards, or some odd double-backer, but for duplicating a set of gaffs for a packet or something -- I pay a pro to do them.. I get better results and I'm supporting a buddy ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Steven Youell

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Reply with quote  #24 
Card splitting is something people do because they want to do it, not because they need to do it.
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