La MaggioreLa Maggiore: SpecificationsThe Shell Game Store

Modifying the La Maggiore Shells

For those of you home workshop types who'd like to modify your shells, we bring you this success story from our new friend and fellow shell aficionado Ulrich Glammeier who lives (and plays) in Germany. His modified shells look great. I was very impressed by the minimal amount of shell loss from the sanding process. You'll also note how well the La Maggiore shells take acrylic paint as well.

As attachments you find pictures of my modified shells. You can see the added Chanin dip on the first few pictures. Furthermore I "implanted" small magnets (like in the School for Scoundrels Magnetic Street Shells) I fixed them with wood putty and painted the interieur of the shells with acrylic color for plastic models. They work similar to the Magnetic Street shells except that you can also release the magnetic pea by moving the shell forward and pressing on the front (thanks to the Chanin Dip). On the last picture you cannot see the attached pea in the lightly tilted shell.

How long would you say it took you to modify the shells, and how did you go about it?

I did not need more than one hour to modify one shell (without drying time for the putty and the paint).

How did you go about adding the Chanin Dip?

I sanded the shells with very fine sandpaper (put sandpaper flat on a table, tilt front side of the shell slightly and apply pressure on the front side while carefully sanding, repeat the same with the rear side). I tested the interim results from time to time. At the and I rounded the edges of the rim.

You also made added a magnetto each shell, what type of magnets did you use and how did you modify the shells?

I used Neodymium (rare earth) magnets (cylindrical, approx. 3 mm Diameter, 1 mm height). I fixed them with magicians wax inside the front interior of the shell to find the right spot where the magnetic pea should stick to the shell. It must be so that it is fixed to the magnet when put down on the table/mat and moved forward and released when moved forward with pressure on the front of the shell or moved backward. This point is about 6 - 7 mm from the front rim. I marked that point. Then I drilled a hole in (not through!) the shell at this point a little larger than the magnet (i did that holding the shell in the hand, drill press lying flat on the table with a slow drilling velocity), put the magnet in the hole and closed it with wood putty. I used a German brand (Faber "efaplast holzy", modelling clay, similar to wood, air drying). After the clay was hard I sanded the area with fine sand paper and polished it with steel polish. Because the clay had not exactly the same color like the shell I painted the interior of the shell with water based acrylic paint (matte) for plastic models (three coats).

Modifying my La Maggiore shells cost me only a few bucks and a few hours of labour. If done carefully it can be done by everbody (I have two left hands!).

left: modified, right: unmodified

left: unmodified, right: modified

Special thanks to Ulrich for taking the time to write up his process, take these photos and especially for allowing me to share his work with you!


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