Coin in Bottle Effects

Where to buy them:

What they are: Various effects involving coins and bottles.

Rating: Five damp coins


November 2007 was a great month for coin-in-bottle effects. By some strange, inexplicable coincidence, not one, not two, but three different coin-in-bottle effects were released, all on the same day! For the sake of laziness, I'm reviewing them all simultaneously.


Bullet: A quarter melts into a closed, empty plastic drink bottle.

Factory Sealed: A nickel melts into a full, factory-sealed water bottle.

Health Hazard: A dime is dropped into a full bottle of soda and dissolves.


Bullet: Only half a bottle is used -- it looks whole because spectators are only allowed to see it from the front -- making it easy to insert a coin into the open back.

Factory Sealed: Magician uses a water bottle in which a nickel was inserted before the bottle was sealed at the factory. (Bottles with a variety of nickels, including signed nickels, are available through any quality magic distributor.)

Health Hazard: The dime is lightly dusted with sugar, which makes it fizz when dropped into a newly-opened cola bottle. The magician then drinks the soda, secretly swallowing the dime hidden in the cola and risking massive internal injuries.


Each of these effects is brilliant in its own way, but although they use similar props their differences are myriad as can be seen in this chart.

  Bullet Factory Sealed Health Hazard
Coin Quarter Nickel Dime
Bottle Empty drink bottle Full water bottle Full cola bottle
Extra props Half a bottle Special mass-produced water bottle with a nickel in it. Pocket full of sugar
Slight of hand Schwepps' standard semi-bottle "full bottle" rotation Takei palm (for invisibly swapping normal bottle and bottle with coin in it) Gut Buster technique (for drinking an entire bottle of soda without stopping)
Pros Coin doesn't get wet Looks impossible because it is impossible Teaches important lesson about dangers of carbonated beverages
Cons Handling of half bottle is incredibly difficult (only three living people can do it effectively) Each factory-sealed bottle of water costs $15 and can only be used once You could choke on the coin and die, you could build up a store of dimes in your stomach and die, you could gain weight from drinking too much soda and die.

Note: As of this writing, Health Hazard has been recalled due to complaints from the Consumer Products Safety Counsel. Look for a new product, Amazing Quarter from Kid's Ear, to replace it later this year.End of story

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