Our Thoughts on Custom Chipco Chips
Chipco chips and Paulson chips are like the Rolls Royce of poker chips. If one has the time and money for the ultimate custom poker chips then Chipco chips should be considered. Custom Chipco chips are unparalleled because detailed artwork can cover the entire surface of the chip.
Price Comparisons for Custom Chipco Poker Chips
Chipco poker chips are slightly under $1 per chip without the customization. One can choose stock artwork for $139 where the artwork is one of 12 selection and the name portion is personalized. This option lets the user choose the type of edge-spots to be used. Custom artwork is $199 and it allows one to personalize the chips any way desired. The custom artwork choice includes 2 revisions.
Custom Chipco Poker Chips Appearance
The appearance of custom Chipco Poker chips is contingent on the appearance of the initial artwork. If the original artwork is good then the chip will look good because the level of detail in the design can easily be carried over to the chip.
Custom Chipco Poker Chips Quality
Chipco chips are the Rolls Royce of poker chips. The quality of Chipco chips is legendary. If a person wants to get the best personalized chips in the marketplace then Chipco chips deserve a serious look.
About Chipco Poker Chips
One of the biggest questions concerning Chipco poker chips is how to care for them. After all, folks spending $1 per chip want to protect the investment. Chipo International recommends that Chipco poker chips be cleaned in regular soap and water. Chipco International does not recommend the use of chemical household cleaners, abrasives or solvents on their poker chips.
Chipco poker chips are among the best ceramic poker chips in the world. In fact, they are among the best poker chips in the world period. Here is what Chipco reveals about the quality of their ceramic poker chips.
CHIPCO ProTech™ Series manufacturing methods ensure uniform construction, consistent 10-gram weight, matte finish and a permanent graphic image. This attention to quality assures excellent dealer feel for shuffling, cutting, counting and handling. Using a single material composition eliminates weak points inherent in other manufacturing methods. CHIPCO ProTech™ Series chips will not break apart or wear thin.
Many poker chips are easy to counterfit but not chipco poker chips. Chipco takes great pride in the fact that their chips are one-of-a-kind. Here is what Chipco says about their unique poker chips.
CHIPCO ProTech™ chips eliminate concerns about counterfeits by incorporating edge wording, including denominations/designs. The most secure chip in the industry, CHIPCO ProTech™ Series products have never been successfully counterfeited.
Chipco has been a leader with poker chips since the 1980s. In the 1980s Chipco introduced the ProTech poker chips which was a head of its time. The Chipco ProTech poker chip allowed designers to use the entire surface of the poker chip for graphics. Today Chipco has millions of poker chips being used in casinos all over the world.
Here is what Chipco International says about their history.
New Gaming Chip
It all started in 1985, when CHIPCO identified a unique process as having the ability to revolutionize the role of the gaming chip. After extensive research and development, CHIPCO proudly introduced the ProTech™ chip and changed the way casino managers view table game transaction pieces.
With the ability to display custom designed graphics on the entire chip surface, casinos began to see a more beautiful chip grace their tables. Today, casinos around the world are using CHIPCO chips not only as transaction pieces, but also as a source for generating additional revenue through chip collecting.
Gaming is exploding within the U.S.A. and globally, and CHIPCO is poised to grow with the industry. The ProTech™ chip line now includes several different sizes and shapes. Other technologically advanced CHIPCO products are in development constantly as we strive to meet the needs of our worldwide industry.
Millions in Play
With more than sixty million chips in play at casinos around the world, CHIPCO has earned the respect of the gaming industry and collectors alike.
Chipco Poker Chips vs Cheap Poker Chips
Here is what Dave from HomePokerChips says about Chipco chips compared to cheap 11.5g import poker chips.
OK, I'm going to say it...
Cheap chips SUCK! Every day I see another new entry into the poker chip market. Whether I'm in the mall, in Costco, in a department store or browsing online EVERYONE and their brother are now selling poker chips.
Heck, even my local drugstore carries chips now. Yep, you march right into my neighborhood Walgreens and get yourself a set of 500 chips for only $69.00. What a deal, right?
The overwhelming majority of ALL of these chips are plastic GARBAGE! I realize that is a harsh statment but for close to twenty years I have made my living with casino and poker chips. I know a quality chip and 95% of this stuff is crap (sorry if my harsh language has offended you, but I have to call them as I see them).
Will they do the job? I'm sure they will, but so will coins, rocks and pieces of candy.
More importantly, will they be a set you can proudly use and make your game stand out among your poker buddies?
The bottom line is that if you want a REAL, customized, casino-quality chip than you better plan on spending at LEAST a dollar a chip. Expensive? Definitely! Worth it? Only you can decide.
Just remember that value is not always determined by price.
It's funny how often I see the words "real casino chip weight of 11.5 grams" in the ads for poker chips.
What a crock!
I guess first I should back up and tell you what my definition of a real casino chip is.
In my mind a real casino chip is what you would find on a live table game found in a real casino. Here in Nevada we have hundreds of real casinos all throughout our state. With indian reservations, riverboats, cruise ships and other gaming jurisdictions popping up I'm betting you have a real casino somewhere near you too.
In Nevada, chip manufacturers are licensed by the NGCB (Nevada Gaming Control Board) who is the state's governing & enforcement agency for gaming here in the Silver State. 95% of chips found in Nevada casinos use one of four different companies for their chips.
... I want you to know that none of these companies have an 11.5 gram chip. All of them either have a 9 gram, 9.5 gram or 10 gram chip. 11.5 gram chips no longer exist in casinos. For that matter you won't find a 13 gram or 16 gram chip either.
If you want a chip that has the true weight of a real casino chip than you need to stay away from these heavier chips.
After all most of them are just plastic molded around a metal washer to give it some weight anyway. A slug filled chip is just not a quality chip.
Casino Poker Chips
Dave goes on to talk about the high end chips that are used in casinos. Dave reveals that there are four manufacturers who serve approximately 95% of the real casino chips in the US. One of the problems with high end chips is that they are made for casinos, not necessarily for individuals. It is no problem for casinos to buy custom chips in volume but it is not realistic for an individual to buy custom poker chips in bulk. Fortunately buying custom chipco chips through Dave is a nice option.
By far the largest company is PaulSon. These clay composite chips are characterized by a hat and cane mold around the outside rim of the chip. They are a great looking traditional chip and can be found in just about every gaming jurisdiction.
In my opinion the reason that PaulSon is the largest chip company is that they also manufacture table games, roulette wheels, felt table tops, dice, cards and just about every other product a casino would need to open it's doors. It's real easy for a new casino to have "one stop shopping" with PaulSon and get everything that they need.
The second company is Bud Jones. Bud Jones chips are plastic and characterized by either a coin center or the more common "sticker inlay". Personally I'm not too fond of either the plastic or the sticker that can easily get scratched but from what I understand these chips are the most affordable to a cost conscious casino.
The third company is Bourgott de et Grasset from France. They make a 40 mm ceramic chip that is very similar to the Chipco style of chip. Commonly known as B&G, this company has purchased the above two companies and have renamed themselves Gaming Partners International.
With this conclomerate a casino can go to them and have any style of chip they would like: clay, plastic or ceramic.
The bad news to the person who wants to have a custom chip made by PaulSon, Bud Jones or B&G is that they are out of luck. This new combined company will only make chips for you if you have a current, valid gaming license. Period!
Recently PaulSon has started accepting orders from the general public but they do have a minimum order of 100,000 chips. Most likely that is a chip or two more than you need for your home game.
So if you want a reasonable quantity of a REAL custom chip your only real option is to have the fourth company, Chipco International, make your chip.
There are a few other smaller companies like Blue Chip, RT Plastics and American Standard but these are chips that are rarely if ever found in real casinos.
Since we have determined that Chipco is the only option to have a real chip customized you'll have to decide if a Chipco Pro-Tech chip is right for you and your home game.
Poker Chips Definitions
Dave gives some clear definitions on the terms used with poker chips.
I got most of these definitions from the website of the Casino Chip & Gaming Token Collectors Club (CC & GTCC) of which I have been a proud member since 1995.
First here are a few chip concepts that precede the "chiptionary":
Chip vs. Cheque/Check: Chips have no cash value; there is no denomination on a chip. A cheque on the other hand represents a redeemable cash value. Technically just about all the chips found in casinos and in the home games sets we sell are in fact cheques because a denomination is printed on them. Chips are usually found on roulette tables as the player can assign any value to them when he buys into the game to start playing. For an ease of understanding we refer to chips and cheques alike simply as chips.
Coin Aligned vs. Metal Aligned: This is the relationship of the obverse to reverse alignment of the design on the chip. With a coin aligned chip the subjects are one right side up and the other side upside down when rotating the chip left to right or right to left. Metal aligned has its design right side up on both sides when rotated left to right or right to left. Chipco chips are neither coin nor metal aligned. Since the faces are printed separately and they are randomly fed into the machine you will find a countless variety of face to face alignments within a group of Chipco chips.
Now on to the chip terms...
Denomination: The value printed on the face of a chip.
Edge: The outermost portion of a chip. By balancing a chip perpendicular to a flat surface it is said to be standing on its edge. This is sometimes referred to as the "rolling edge" since if you were to roll a chip it would have to be standing on edge.
Edge Spots: Offsetting colors printed on the rolling edge that are different than the base color of the chip.
Edge Text: Text or symbols printed on the rolling edge of a chip. This is a feature that Chipco originated with their Pro-Tech chip. Generally this is a characteristic found only on ceramic chips.
Inlay: Center of the chip where graphics appear. Some refer to this as the "face" of the chip. With a Chipco chip this is the edge to edge surface where on traditional clay chip it is a smaller space surrounded by the mold area.
Insert: Colored markings (single and multiple stripes) around the inlay, unique to the particular chip style and denomination. Used as a security device and also for chip identification.
Mold: A die used to create the basic relief design on plastic and clay chips. The Chipco chips that we sell do not have a mold area on them yet it is such a frequently used term that we felt it needed to be included.
Obverse: Referring to the front or "heads side" of a chip.
Plaque: Rectangular square-shaped or oval cheque primarily used in European casinos. Chipco DOES manufacturer plaques as well as chips/cheques in non-standard sizes.
Reverse: Referring to the back or "tails" side of a chip.
Rim: Sometimes mistakenly called the edge. A chip stands on its edge, not its rim. The rim is usually the area of the chip that contains the mold. On a Chipco chip the rim is often used for text that is curved above and below the graphical focal point of the chip.