Stacked Deck Work

Published on Thursday, November 03, 2005 in , , , , ,

As Doug Dyment points out there are trade-offs when working with memorized decks vs. sequential and algorithmic stacks.

If you don't want to take the time to develop a memorized stack, there are many great alternatives. The classic Si Stebbins (described in the above link) has many advantages, including being easy to learn. Over at Elknase's World, there is an exhaustive guide on how to work out any card in the Si Stebbins stack, given only the knowledge of the bottom card. No, you don't need to memorize this for live work, but it is of great help when construction a particular trick with the Si Stebbins stack. One thing you should be aware of is that, despite the note that mistakenly says otherwise, "opposite suit" refers to the other suit of the same color as the bottom card.

The classic problem with the Si Stebbins deck, however, has always been the "too perfect" alternation of red-black colors. Elknase has tackled that problem, with the Elknase Card System (originally named the Dominic Card System, but changed to avoid confusion with the Dominic Memory System). Don't let the fact that the introduction page is in German scare you. The free PDF explanation is available in both German and English. I'll leave the question of whether the random appearance of the stack is worth the added work for the reader.

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