Dealer Cutouts, yay or nay?

JScott

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This seems to warrant its own thread as the only discussions are in other threads, and scenarios are different for each game.

If your game has a dedicated dealer it's a no brainer to have one, if you're entirely self dealt, then it makes sense NOT to get one. But there are some scenarios where my game falls under, and wondering if it makes sense to get one for other scenarios. Table is going to be a 48x84" oval with a 3/4 raised rail. I'm worried that for the games I'm dealing that the raised rail will be an issue and get in the way. Reach isn't an issue as I'm 6'3". Usually our games are self dealt, but there are some scenarios in which things can change.

Scenario 1.) Dedicated dealer, who's also playing. This happened at the last tournament I hosted, game was super slow so I took up dealing, everyone liked it, so did I. Wasn't an issue on the @T_Chan table with no raised rail.
Scenario 2.) Hosting new games where I'm teaching poker/mixed games, or even hosting a higher stakes game. I've been asked by some guys to host a larger stakes game (much higher than I'm willing to play at $5/10). I'm stoked to do this as I have the chip security, will have the table and an awesome location, but may not be comfortable with stakes. Is dealing a game for others going to suck on a table with no cutout and a raised rail? Could I maybe have a cutout where it's just not raised? I guess that's a Q for Tony.

Lastly, what do you think looks better? cutout or not?
 

DZPoker

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Lastly, what do you think looks better? cutout or not?
On this point alone, I’m against. I just think it looks so much better to not have one when one would help, vs what it looks like when you have one when one would not help. May have to read that twice and then message me for it to make sense :)
 

Venturalvn

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It's much easier to deal full time without a rail in the way. If you won't always have a dedicated dealer, though, getting a chair that that get a touch higher helps if you have to have a rail.
 

Rhodeman77

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I would suggest as a compromise to get a bean shaped table without a tray.
 

KMac

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I’m in the same boat. Wondering should I add a dealer tray and cutout. I deal at my games and play so the dealer tray would get in the way. But I do have 2 matching tables so I could add the tray and use the other table when I don’t want one. Decisions, Decisions...
 

JScott

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I’m in the same boat. Wondering should I add a dealer tray and cutout. I deal at my games and play so the dealer tray would get in the way. But I do have 2 matching tables so I could add the tray and use the other table when I don’t want one. Decisions, Decisions...
A tray is a hard no for me, mostly based on looks, I’d do a drawer, but thinking a side table can handle my chips.

basically the question is this, is it a pain to deal without a cutout? If not, I’ll skip it.
 

Han Trinh

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Same for me, not a fan of the tray look. Would prefer a drawer if needed to keep the surface of the table less busy visually.

also not a fan of a cut out unless you really want to have a dedicated dealer all the time. It becomes a very specialized table or piece of furniture.
 

Rhodeman77

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The correct answer of course is both! Have 2 tables. A small table for self deal games. And a larger table for when you use a dealer.

My game was always self deal but recently (last year or so) we have been using a dedicated dealer and my players really like it. So now we use a dealer for the Big Bet games.

But we also play mixed limit games and because the pace is already slower and with less players it doesn’t make as much sense to use a dealer. So we use the smaller table for those games and it works great.

Eventually I will replace my bigger table with a custom table and it will have a dealer position in it.
 

msuroo

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Every time I’ve seen this discussed, the conventional wisdom is that being playing on a cutout is worse than dealing on a rail, so unless you’ll always have a dedicated dealer, a full rail is preferred. I did see a build a few years ago (that my search function fu is failing me on now) where the dealer cutout was modular - ie there was a short piece of rail that filled the gap that could be bolted on for self dealt games, but removed for dealer games. That was clever!
 

Colquhoun

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I never really understood a tray at a poker table. The only time used is for buy-ins and rebuys. All the rest of the chips are just going back and forth between players.
Seems an awful lot of table real estate for a less than frequent event.
 

Chippychips

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not a fan of cutouts in the actual table (makes the table look like a bit of a kidney bean). It’s also impossible for seat 1 and seat 8 to have a conversation without talking through or around the dealer.

Only cut out I’ve ever seen that I like is the table @Windwalker had made by @T_Chan (hope you don’t mind my posting the pic here). Simple dealer cutout in the rail but leaving a half rail for the dealer seat........ it works!

1607475361820.jpeg
 

JScott

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The correct answer of course is both! Have 2 tables. A small table for self deal games. And a larger table for when you use a dealer.

My game was always self deal but recently (last year or so) we have been using a dedicated dealer and my players really like it. So now we use a dealer for the Big Bet games.

But we also play mixed limit games and because the pace is already slower and with less players it doesn’t make as much sense to use a dealer. So we use the smaller table for those games and it works great.

Eventually I will replace my bigger table with a custom table and it will have a dealer position in it.
That’s just the thing, I do have an ex rental table made by Tony, a folder. But this is more for my showpiece custom-made table from him. I’m spending the better part of $5000 on it so I want it to be an art piece. ;)
not a fan of cutouts in the actual table (makes the table look like a bit of a kidney bean). It’s also impossible for seat 1 and seat 8 to have a conversation without talking through or around the dealer.

Only cut out I’ve ever seen that I like is the table @Windwalker had made by @T_Chan (hope you don’t mind my posting the pic here). Simple dealer cutout in the rail but leaving a half rail for the dealer seat........ it works!

View attachment 589511

see that above is actually what I’m talking about, and the picture of his table is what got me thinking again about a cutout.

If I were to do one it would look very similar to that with the small pad. I don’t want a full cutout
 

Goldfish

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if storage is not an issue have two tables - a 60 inch round table for self deal and a 96 inch with dealer cut out for dealer games. the round table is hands down the best way to self deal. I had two tables for years, but now only play with a dedicated dealer So I got rid of my round table. My 96 inch table does not have a dealer cut out so we have a special chair that sits higher For the dealer. As soon as COVID is over and I decide to resume hosting I will invest in a @T_Chan table with a dealer cut out. best Way to go in my opinion. Just my thoughts.
 

allforcharity

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I have a dealer cutout, but it's because I use my table for many types of games. Blackjack, baccarat have been played on them for my fundraisers, and I'm the dedicated dealer, so it's nice for me to have it.
 

BGinGA

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Only cut out I’ve ever seen that I like is the table @Windwalker had made by @T_Chan (hope you don’t mind my posting the pic here). Simple dealer cutout in the rail but leaving a half rail for the dealer seat........ it works!

View attachment 589511
^ This style is my preference for a table that is used for various game types, including a dedicated dealer or a playing dealer, and occasional self-dealt games.

No dealer cut-out, no chip tray, and a min-rail in the dealer position. Also prefer using slide-under cupholders (vs fixed positions in the rail).
 

JScott

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^ This style is my preference for a table that is used for various game types, including a dedicated dealer or a playing dealer, and occasional self-dealt games.

No dealer cut-out, no chip tray, and a min-rail in the dealer position. Also prefer using slide-under cupholders (vs fixed positions in the rail).
That’s pretty much what I’m looking at doing.

raised 3/4 rail, no cupholders as I’ll use drink carts, and then a min rail for the dealer position.
 

Rebelwork

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It's your table. I don't see why you need permission....

But I do this sometimes. I'll ask opinions even though I will build it the way I want..
 
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JScott

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It's your table. I don't see why you need permission....

But I do this sometimes. I'll ask opinions even though I will build it the way I want..
You know what there’s a lot of things I did wrong at the start of this journey and I wish I would’ve asked. And don’t think I didn’t take the opinions here to heart. I did.

because of advice I’ve gotten here in the past I decided to go without cupholders and because of this thread I think I’ve decided I am going to go with a dealer cut out just with a minimum rail, which funny enough is what I meant when I said dealer cut out anyways. :)
 

JScott

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I should also add that if the general consensus here was that dealer cut outs are just awful to play on as a player, I wouldn’t build one. Especially since it’s gonna be me sitting in that seat most of the time, playing and dealing or just dealing.
 

Coyote

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IMHO, both aesthetically and functionally, there is no reason for a cut in home tables (a tray is out of the question) if the dealer, whoever that may be, is going to be playing even some of the time.
Chips and the Bank can be placed in a locking case resting on a piece of furniture behind him/her.
Just get the dealer an adjustable height, revolving, wheeled, ergonomical chair. Solved.:)
 

JScott

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Let’s just be clear that a tray was never ever a consideration on my table. Drawer on the other hand was a maybe, but even then I’m going side table.
 

BGinGA

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I should also add that if the general consensus here was that dealer cut outs are just awful to play on as a player, I wouldn’t build one. Especially since it’s gonna be me sitting in that seat most of the time, playing and dealing or just dealing.
I think the biggest complaints stem from trying to play with a dealer tray in the way, playing where the dealer position is cut-out (moved forward), and when there is no dealer-position rail (to help prevent chips/cards from leaving the table surface. A straight-edge table with dealer position min-rail (and no tray) addresses all of those issues.
 

jbomb1018

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I like the idea of min-rail. It can be used either way and gives more versatility compared to having 2 tables or just having the table one way or the other and being disappointed with it later on.
 

JScott

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You know what guys this has actually really helped, I went from really thinking I was leaning towards no dealer cut out at all and now I’m gonna go with a min rail I believe.

I’ll talk to @T_Chan and get some ideas.

F**k me this forum is awesome. Expensive... but awesome.
 

StatTracker

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If your table has a raised rail and you want a dedicated dealer, you better believe that the dealer will be walking if there is no cutout. Better safe than sorry and it's always possible to craft a removable part of the railing for when there is no DD
 
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