Cartesian Balance


Description A pretty move in which three coins are balanced on three extended fingers.
Start Start with a stack of three coins held edgewise in an Index Curl Grip with the middle finger. The hand should be palm down.
  1. Slide the bottom coin (Coin 1) off the stack with the thumb and onto the top of the second phalanx of the middle finger.
  2. Hold the sides of Coin 1 with the sides of the ring and index fingers and turn the hand palm up.
  3. With the thumb slide the next coin off the stack and along the index finger until it sits in a flatwise balance on the very tip of the index finger.
  4. Turn the hand palm down again while extending the index finger so that it is pointing up with the coin still balanced on it.
  5. Let the last coin drop down onto the tip of the thumb and extend the thumb, middle and index fingers to display the balance.
Comments To close the balance you can reverse the moves as described above but the method I prefer is as follows:
  1. Slowly bring the thumb and index fingers together and just before the coin on the index finger slides off snap the two coins together.
  2. Walk the coin from the middle finger to the top of the index finger (above the stack)
  3. Remove the index finger to finish the the 3 coins in a stack between the thumb and middle finger.
There are many other variations where coins are balanced on the fingers in various ways. The Downs Star is a well known version. Here are a few other examples, just showing the finishing positions:

Rock On:
Hold the hand out with the palm facing down. Extend the index and pinkie fingers and curl the middle and ring fingers into the palm. The thumb should be extended out below the middle and ring fingers. A coin should be balanced on the back of the third phalanx of the index and pinkie fingers with a third coin balanced on the tip of the thumb.
(689k) The Cobra:
Hold out the hand with the palm down and the fingers extended. Place three coins on the second phalanx of the index, middle and ring fingers. Place a fourth coin on the top of the thumb.
Now tilt the hand back so that the palm is facing forwards and the fingers are curled. The middle finger should be lifted higher than the index and ring fingers. The thumb should be in line with the middle finger and below the index and ring fingers.

The video to the left shows one method that can be used to get to the balance.

This balance is based on the Cobra Cut which is a card cut move created by De'vo and can be seen at

The thumb is in the wrong spot in the image, it should be in line with and below the middle finger.