22 Jan

About Poker Chips

Professional Poker Chips

A chip for poker (also called a chip) is a small disc used instead of money in casinos or poker clubs. Chips, according to the material of manufacture, can be: ceramic, clay or ABS plastic. They are mainly used in board games. Chips are widely used in sports poker tournaments.

Some casinos and clubs at high betting games (from $ 25000 and above) use chips. A plaque differs from a chip in that it is larger and usually has a rectangular shape. Also, the crybabies in the casino have their serial numbers.

Using chips for poker

Money at the casino or club is exchanged for chips at the cash desk, game table or special exchange office. Poker chips are equal in value to money at the casino/club. Outside the casino(club), however, they are of no value, although some casinos in Las Vegas do accept chips from other casinos.


Chips are used in casinos for several reasons: they are more convenient to use than paper money, they are harder to steal or fake. Because they are the same size, they are easier to count in stacks (stacks) compared to paper notes when used on a table. Chips also allow the pit boss or security team to quickly check the amount of payment, reducing the chance that the dealer may miscalculate the customer. The unified weight of each chip for casino poker allows you to quickly determine the total value of all chips in a large stack by total weight, although it is more common to count using standardized chip trays. Players are also more free to handle the chips when playing than they are with cash.

Finally, the chips are considered an integral part of the casino atmosphere and any way to replace them with an alternative currency will not be popular among players.

Original chips for poker is a huge industry of numismatics. This hobby is becoming more and more popular around the world. Chips & Gaming Tokens Club was founded in 1988. The cost of some chips exceeds $50,000. Some casinos sell sets of chips for poker with one or two original deck of cards and casino/club logo on them. A set of chips will fit in your case or suitcase.

History of Poker Chips

Although the first gambling houses were legalized in Venice in 1626, the chips, as we now know them, have not been used for two hundred years. Back in the 1800s, players used to play any small valuable objects such as coins, gold nuggets, gold sand. Later chips began to appear, primarily from ivory, wood, paper and a mixture of clay.

Between the 1880s and the late 1930s, several companies made the first clay poker chips. Over 1000 varieties were produced. Most of the chips were white, red, blue and yellow, but nowadays they can be almost any desired color.

The composition and production of poker chips

The vast majority of authentic poker chips are ceramic or clay chips. Clay chips can be more accurately described as chips made by compression molding. Contrary to the popular belief that 100% clay chips have been widely used since the 1950s, modern clay chips are made from materials, allowing for an increased durability of the chip. Different ratios of materials are used in the production of poker chips, such as: sand, calcium carbonate, chalk and clay.


The process used to manufacture the chips is a trade secret and can vary slightly from manufacturer to manufacturer, most of these processes are considered relatively expensive and time consuming. To apply a drawing on the rib of the chips, it is necessary to remove part of the clay, and then replace it with clay of a different color, this operation should be done for each chip individually or, to reduce the time of manufacture, at the stage of forming a cylindrical shape, for subsequent cutting into individual chips, cut out strips of clay and replace them with clay of an alternative color. In this case, each chip gets the original decor of the rib and the edge of the front side.

Then the chips are placed in a special form, where they are heated and compressed by pressure about 10,000 PSI (70 MPa) at a temperature of 300 ° F (149 ° C), hence the name of the compression molding method.

Ceramic chips were introduced in the mid-1980s as an alternative to clay chips, and are very common in casinos and are also easily available for purchase. Ceramic chips for poker are often mentioned by some vendors as clay chips or made of composite clay, but they are actually made by injection molding of certain plastics and resins that bring the feel and sound of these chips closer to the clay chips.

Printed graphics on ceramic chips is called inlay. Inlays, usually made of paper coated with a thin plastic film, are applied to the chip before the compression molding process. During the forming process, the decoration becomes an integral part of the chip and cannot be separated from the chip without destroying it.

Chips used in casinos in America rarely weigh more than 10 grams, their weight is usually between 8.5 and 10 grams.


There is no universal weight for chips, however, some chips are encrusted with metal tokens to increase their weight. Chips for home use have a significantly larger weight range, sometimes weighing up to 16 g, depending on the manufacturer and manufacturing technology.

A common design for home use is the image of six faces of playing dice (dice) or card suits at the edges of the face of a poker chip. They are usually manufactured using ABS plastic injection molding technology. Some chips are formed around a small metal disc, called a token, to increase weight.
Pearlescent poker chips are also often used in Europe.

Poker chip sewing technology

Each casino has its own unique chips, even if the casino is part of a larger company, as each chip at the gaming table must be backed by an appropriate amount of money. In addition, with the exception of the State of Nevada, the use of chips from third party casinos is not allowed in the casino.

Chip protection elements for casinos are numerous: The image on the chip is usually of very high resolution or photographic quality; combinations of colors on the edges of the chip are usually specific to the casino. Ultraviolet marking of the chip is possible. Some chips for poker have an embedded RFID chip, such chips are used in the new Wynn casino in Las Vegas.

Cases of detection of counterfeit chips for poker are very rare. The high level of control and monitoring of everything that happens on the territory of the casino/club does not leave a chance for fraudsters to counterfeit poker chips. But the casino, however, is ready for this situation. At any moment the casino has the right to remove all chips from the gaming tables and replace them with new ones with alternative markings. Regulatory documents require each casino to have an additional stock of alternatively marked poker chips, although the number of backup chips does not necessarily have to match the number of basic poker chips.

Poker chip variants

Some casinos, such as Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, produce limited edition chips (“Limited Edition”) dedicated to different events, while maintaining the overall color scheme. This encourages customers to buy them as souvenirs, bringing additional revenue to the casino.
Some casinos, such as Wynn Encore & Casino in Las Vegas, use chips with integrated radio frequency beacons to better track the chips at their tables and to determine the average betting size at each table, as well as to make them more difficult to reproduce by scammers. However, this method is expensive and many experts see it as unnecessary and does not affect the profit of the institution.

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