Technically, these "Roughing Sticks" do not created a rough coating; they utilize a principle that
was employed before roughing fluid was developed decades ago: they apply a light tackifier that
causes one card to cling to another.
This, however, is not a criticism as they do the job
required and with less fuss for application. The coated surface is not sticky; just a tiny bit waxy
to the touch. This is not an issue, in my opinion. And of course the coating is invisible.
Please note that if applied with the expedient procedure shown on the video-link instructions, a
procedure which does not provide a coating on the entire surface of the card, your cards must be
perfectly flat or else the method is given away. (A pair of cards may curl away from each other at
the edges.) It is possible to coat the entire surface, but this takes more diligence to accomplish,
though it is not an impossible task. If the cards are not curled, bridged, or warped, you have no
That being said, an entire deck can be gaffed (creating 26 "clinging" pairs) in an
incredibly short amount of time, and this is definitely in the product's favor.
It is easy
to intentionally coat only a part of the surface and to "custom-prepare" the cards to accommodate
any method for separating the pairs that the performer finds convenient. This is a definite
improvement over the traditional roughing procedure, as fully roughed surfaces (using roughing
fluid) are often difficult to separate and partial roughing requires rather fussy masking techniques
when the fluid is applied. Not so with the easy-to-handle Roughing Sticks.
As with roughing
fluid, a certain amount of maintenance(reapplication) will be required over time, but this is to be
For me, the biggest asset to this method for creating "roughed" or adhering card
pairs is that it is great for experimentation with new ideas utilizing this principle. Several cards
can be prepared very quickly with no need to wait for drying, since it is a dry application as
opposed to the traditional roughing method. Then, if the experiment fails or needs modification, one
does not have to throw out the cards you have tested your idea with; the coating can be scraped off
and you can start over. If the experiment is a success, your "test" cards may be suitable for
I do not plan on abandoning the use of roughing fluid as a result
of obtaining the Roughing Sticks, but I will definitely add the sticks to my arsenal of gaffing
techniques. The sticks are both practical and convenient for many circumstances for which secretly
clinging card pairs (posing as a single card) are required.
6 of 7 magicians found this helpful.
I am now in my 58th year of magical interest. During that time I've used more roughing fluid than I
care to even think about. Harry Robson's "Roughing Sticks" is a far superior product and method to
rough a deck of cards, regular or jumbo, high quality cards, cheap drug store cards and business
cards than anything I've ever used.
Using the product is simple, clean and incredibly fast!
Easy to apply and no drying time.
When I travel I carry an emergency parts kit for my show
in a carry on. In the past I've had to throw away a bottle of roughing fluid because it was liquid
and security didn't like the smell. Airport security doesn't event bother with the stick. It goes
Cannot say enough good things about Roughing Sticks.
2 of 2 magicians found this helpful.
Really useful, easy to use, lasts forever, all these for a great price!
1 of 1 magicians found this helpful.
The feeling is different - feels like wax and if you use it on both sides it sticks. So you can also
create stucking cards without stucking.
A very usefull tool every magician and mentalist should
have within his first aid kit.
1 of 1 magicians found this helpful.
just passed over a card. Still going strong a month latter. More practical.
1 of 2 magicians found this helpful.
first rate ,you will never use spray again
I remember being excited that I could do my own roughing with the spray. No more spray for me. The
Roughing Stick is a major improvement. It is so easy to use and so effective, I am excited about
seeking more tricks that use the rough and smooth principle. A great buy.
one word Excellent especially for the novice, which I am.
Better than the spray by far, easier to control the roughed area
Wow! I was hesitant, but hopeful that the Roughing Sticksby Harry Robson would work on my stage size
McCombical Prediction deck (4.5" X 7" cards). I've had the deck for many years and have re-roughed
it with various fluids, but badly needed a re-do. I am thrilled to say that the Roughing Sticks
worked great ~ and so easy to use! If you're afraid as to whether the sticks will work on a larger
cards, you can always use the wide side of the stick; I did for the first few, but then tried the
narrow edge and it worked just fine! Yes, I highly recommend these Roughing Sticks to you!