New to Poker Chips

L3urntout

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Hello all!

Been an online only guy until recently and just started getting into poker more seriously hanging out with some friends seriously involved. Figured if I was going to get a set might as well get a good one!

Y'all got any good introduction media for me to consume? Saw some YouTuber references in some other posts, but what makes a good poker chip aside from just looks?

Thanks,
 

Eloe2000

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Welcome!

It's all about the feel and sound (which is why everyone will recommend getting samples). Depending on what price range you are looking in you can get samples at the vendors below or in the classifieds here. It is worth just browsing around and seeing what has sold recently.

From less expensive to more expensive (quality generally corresponds):
  • Plastic weighted chips (~$.15 ea): Claysmith Gaming - desert heat, the mint, poker knights, etc.
  • China Clays (~$.42 ea): Apache Poker - majestics, dunes, etc.
  • Ceramics (~$.65 ea): BR PRo Poker/ABC Gifts: Dia De Los Muertos, etc.
  • Other casino quality plastics/ceramics (~$.60-1.50 ea): Bud Jones, Sunfly, etc
  • Compression Clay (~$1-3 each): Classic Poker Chips - Rounders, Atlantic Club, or customs (or Key West Poker Chips)
  • Compression Clay: Paulson (maker of many casino chips) or TRK - only available second hand through the Classifieds here or eBay etc.
    • Casino Used (~$1-3 each)
    • RHC like new (~$1-3 each)
    • THC like new (~$2-5 each on average but the sky is the limit)
The majority of what you see bought and sold and discussed here are Paulsons for various reasons, but I would recommend any chip in the categories aboce based on budget and preferences.

Hobbyphilic on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_-NxjalCm94U90WnB_fv1Q
 

DZPoker

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Welcome!

My advise would be to take some time and just browse this forum. So much incredible info on here!
 

FordPickup92

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Did someone say media?

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A good poker chip? Nice colors, good weight, textured shaped inlays (personal preference)
Everyone has their own preferences
 

Eloe2000

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Did someone say media?

View attachment 540405

A good poker chip? Nice colors, good weight, textured shaped inlays (personal preference)
Everyone has their own preferences

Who would have ever guessed that some firemen/women from Maryland would put out some of the dead sexiest poker chips ever produced. They are practically electric.
 

Bano

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Good selling point with the pictures.

Paulsons can get expensive!
 

FordPickup92

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Who would have ever guessed that some firemen/women from Maryland would put out some of the dead sexiest poker chips ever produced. They are practically electric.
I really wish I could find the other denoms :tdown:
 

tabletalker7

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L3urntout

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I went and splashed on some ceramic and china clay sample sets lol, gonna have to grind a bigger bankroll/play more live games to justify something better!
 

CrazyEddie

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Welcome! @Eloe2000 's post is a great overview of the kinds of chips available. Let me offer a second approach to your new-found hobby: different ways to go about obtaining a new set of chips.
  • Retail:
    • You can buy a huge variety of chips right off the shelf. These are the chips sold to home users rather than casinos.
    • Tons of graphic designs are available, so you can probably find something you like.
    • Be warned that most of what you'll see are plastic chips with metal inserts for added weight, known as "slugged plastic" around here. They're the least expensive, but lowest quality; most forum members don't like they way they feel compared to the pricier alternatives.
    • That said, you can also get the much nicer china clays and ceramics through retail. Many PCF members are quite happy with the off-the-shelf china clay and ceramic sets that they own.
    • Compression clays like Paulsons and the casino-quality plastics and ceramics like Bud Jones and Sun-Fly are, generally speaking, only sold to casinos or in quantities that make home sales prohibitive, so don't expect to find them through retail outlets.
  • Casino used:
    • These are chips that are actually from casinos and which have made it onto the collectors' market one way or another.
    • They may be fairly recent or they may be very old.
    • They may be in great condition or they may be extremely worn.
    • The graphic design is whatever the casino used at the time they were in circulation. There's a wide variety, but of couse they're all going to look, well, casino-y. There's not as much diversity in approaches as with the retail chips.
    • The types of chips you'll find include compression clays, casino-quality ceramics, and casino-quality plastics.
    • In some cases, you can find chips which were intended to be used in casinos but never were because the casino never opened. Examples include President Casino New Yorker and Capitol City Casino.
    • Some people here like to build complete sets using chips from a single casino; either they particularly like the design of the chips, or the casino has some sentimental or historical value. Others like to build mixed sets from several different casinos, because they like the variety and enjoy finding different chips that work well together.
    • To buy these, you'll need to scour the third-party markets such as Ebay, Craigslist, and most especially the classifieds here on PCF.
  • Fantasy:
    • These are casino-quality chips, made by the same manufacturers who supply chips to casinos, but made for the home market rather than casinos.
    • They usually look like they could be from a casino, but the casino doesn't exist. Notable examples are Pharaoh's, Private Cardroom, and the James Bond-themed Casino de Isthmus.
    • But there are also non-casino designs, such as Zodiacs, Fan of Cards, and World Top Hat and Cane.
    • There are fantasy sets that were commissioned by chip enthusiasts, including some of the members of this forum. Noteable examples include Aurora Star, Empress Star, Big Top Poker, and Sunset Beach. Older examples include Samurai Palace, Mardi Gras, Protege, and Le Paulson Noir.
    • Here's a site that lists many fantasy and never-opened casinos, and has pictures of the chips: http://www.ccgtcc.com/xfantasy/fakes_body.html . It's not complete but it's a good resource to give you some idea of what's out there.
    • You'll find these only on the third-party markets.
  • Vintage custom home sets:
    • These are casino-quality chips, made by the casino-chip manufacturers, sold to the home market, with customized features such as monograms or logos.
    • All of these are "vintage" because the casino-chip manufacturers don't do home sales any more. But they used to, and it's pretty common to see old, casino-quality chips - usually with very plain designs, solid colors without any edge spots - with hotstamped monograms for a particular retail customer.
    • Some PCF members make sets out of these as-is, monogram and all. Others mill out the centers to remove the monograms and then apply custom labels to make a brand-new chip out of them (see below).
    • You'll find these only on the third-party markets. Expect them to turn up in garage sales and flea markets.
  • Your own custom set!
    • There's several ways you can get a set of chips using your own custom graphic design, should you be so inclined.
    • Relabels: You can buy pretty much any kind of chip - from cheap slugged plastic to rare and expensive mint-quality casino clays - and replace the chips' labels with your own. This will run you from a few cents per chip up to twenty cents per chip depending on what quality labels you get and where you get them from. It can also be a lot of time and effort to pull the old labels off and put the new ones on. But a lot of forum members have done this, and the results can be spectacular.
    • Custom ceramics: Ceramic chips can be printed with absolutely any artwork or graphic design you like. Retailers carry a wide variety of stock designs, but they'll all let you submit your own design and will print it for you. This costs a bit more than the stock designs, of course.
    • Custom casino-quality ceramics and plastics: Some manufacturers such as Sun-Fly and Matsui will make custom chips for anyone, but they normally sell to casinos, so it's somewhat cumbersome for the average home purchaser to just buy what they want. But it's not impossible! It's just not as simple as clicking on "Buy It Now" on a typical retail website. Many people have done it; you can find plenty of posts here on PCF offering suggestions and advice.
    • Custom casino-quality compression clays: This is the Real Deal, what many people consider the ultimate in poker chips. The only place you can get these types of chips any more is Classic Poker Chips - http://www.classicpokerchips.com/ . They're the only remaining manufacturer of real, casino-quality, compression clay chips that will still sell to the home market. If you want a chip just like the ones you're used to seeing in casinos, but made to your own specifications, then these fine gentlemen will be happy to make them for you.
This is really just scratching the surface. There's undoubtedly things I've overlooked here. But this is all information that I wish I had when I started out as a chipper; I hope it helps you as well.

Good luck, and enjoy the journey!
 

Eriks

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Welcome! @Eloe2000 's post is a great overview of the kinds of chips available. Let me offer a second approach to your new-found hobby: different ways to go about obtaining a new set of chips.
  • Retail:
    • You can buy a huge variety of chips right off the shelf. These are the chips sold to home users rather than casinos.
    • Tons of graphic designs are available, so you can probably find something you like.
    • Be warned that most of what you'll see are plastic chips with metal inserts for added weight, known as "slugged plastic" around here. They're the least expensive, but lowest quality; most forum members don't like they way they feel compared to the pricier alternatives.
    • That said, you can also get the much nicer china clays and ceramics through retail. Many PCF members are quite happy with the off-the-shelf china clay and ceramic sets that they own.
    • Compression clays like Paulsons and the casino-quality plastics and ceramics like Bud Jones and Sun-Fly are, generally speaking, only sold to casinos or in quantities that make home sales prohibitive, so don't expect to find them through retail outlets.
  • Casino used:
    • These are chips that are actually from casinos and which have made it onto the collectors' market one way or another.
    • They may be fairly recent or they may be very old.
    • They may be in great condition or they may be extremely worn.
    • The graphic design is whatever the casino used at the time they were in circulation. There's a wide variety, but of couse they're all going to look, well, casino-y. There's not as much diversity in approaches as with the retail chips.
    • The types of chips you'll find include compression clays, casino-quality ceramics, and casino-quality plastics.
    • In some cases, you can find chips which were intended to be used in casinos but never were because the casino never opened. Examples include President Casino New Yorker and Capitol City Casino.
    • Some people here like to build complete sets using chips from a single casino; either they particularly like the design of the chips, or the casino has some sentimental or historical value. Others like to build mixed sets from several different casinos, because they like the variety and enjoy finding different chips that work well together.
    • To buy these, you'll need to scour the third-party markets such as Ebay, Craigslist, and most especially the classifieds here on PCF.
  • Fantasy:
    • These are casino-quality chips, made by the same manufacturers who supply chips to casinos, but made for the home market rather than casinos.
    • They usually look like they could be from a casino, but the casino doesn't exist. Notable examples are Pharaoh's, Private Cardroom, and the James Bond-themed Casino de Isthmus.
    • But there are also non-casino designs, such as Zodiacs, Fan of Cards, and World Top Hat and Cane.
    • There are fantasy sets that were commissioned by chip enthusiasts, including some of the members of this forum. Noteable examples include Aurora Star, Empress Star, Big Top Poker, and Sunset Beach. Older examples include Samurai Palace, Mardi Gras, Protege, and Le Paulson Noir.
    • Here's a site that lists many fantasy and never-opened casinos, and has pictures of the chips: http://www.ccgtcc.com/xfantasy/fakes_body.html . It's not complete but it's a good resource to give you some idea of what's out there.
    • You'll find these only on the third-party markets.
  • Vintage custom home sets:
    • These are casino-quality chips, made by the casino-chip manufacturers, sold to the home market, with customized features such as monograms or logos.
    • All of these are "vintage" because the casino-chip manufacturers don't do home sales any more. But they used to, and it's pretty common to see old, casino-quality chips - usually with very plain designs, solid colors without any edge spots - with hotstamped monograms for a particular retail customer.
    • Some PCF members make sets out of these as-is, monogram and all. Others mill out the centers to remove the monograms and then apply custom labels to make a brand-new chip out of them (see below).
    • You'll find these only on the third-party markets. Expect them to turn up in garage sales and flea markets.
  • Your own custom set!
    • There's several ways you can get a set of chips using your own custom graphic design, should you be so inclined.
    • Relabels: You can buy pretty much any kind of chip - from cheap slugged plastic to rare and expensive mint-quality casino clays - and replace the chips' labels with your own. This will run you from a few cents per chip up to twenty cents per chip depending on what quality labels you get and where you get them from. It can also be a lot of time and effort to pull the old labels off and put the new ones on. But a lot of forum members have done this, and the results can be spectacular.
    • Custom ceramics: Ceramic chips can be printed with absolutely any artwork or graphic design you like. Retailers carry a wide variety of stock designs, but they'll all let you submit your own design and will print it for you. This costs a bit more than the stock designs, of course.
    • Custom casino-quality ceramics and plastics: Some manufacturers such as Sun-Fly and Matsui will make custom chips for anyone, but they normally sell to casinos, so it's somewhat cumbersome for the average home purchaser to just buy what they want. But it's not impossible! It's just not as simple as clicking on "Buy It Now" on a typical retail website. Many people have done it; you can find plenty of posts here on PCF offering suggestions and advice.
    • Custom casino-quality compression clays: This is the Real Deal, what many people consider the ultimate in poker chips. The only place you can get these types of chips any more is Classic Poker Chips - http://www.classicpokerchips.com/ . They're the only remaining manufacturer of real, casino-quality, compression clay chips that will still sell to the home market. If you want a chip just like the ones you're used to seeing in casinos, but made to your own specifications, then these fine gentlemen will be happy to make them for you.
This is really just scratching the surface. There's undoubtedly things I've overlooked here. But this is all information that I wish I had when I started out as a chipper; I hope it helps you as well.

Good luck, and enjoy the journey!
Awesome post, should be a sticky! @Tommy
 

Raphmivey

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FordPickup92

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Chips you see in this forum are just completlt different (better) than what you see outside of it... it is unbelievable... nice sets!
Thank you! Its definitely a bit of a shell shock the first time you're exposed to everything here on the forum, compared to the "casino quality" chips sold online
 
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