Even if you are not a regular gambler or use only virtual chips, you couldn’t have missed noticing that there are several types of chips. It is easy to tell them apart by sight but if you have a chance to grab some of them, you will immediately notice the difference in the texture and the surface. Some chips are also unique and invaluable due to their age, rareness or just because they are believed to have been used by some famous persons.
Those who are experts on chips and have a huge collection of the colourful coins know all sources where they can come across some desired items. One of the best places for them is e-bay where there are approximately 30,000 results for a single search of ‘casino chips’.
Experts categorize these little coins on the basis of many factors, like colour, weight, denomination, new or retired casino chips, coin centred or not and so on. The main basis of the categorization, however, is the material the chips are made of.
It is so weird that chips are made of this fragile material. Of course, producers have the same doubts in mind, so a ‘true clay’ chip is the highest end quality of a real clay chip. The company that these chips are attributed to is called Paulson or one of its subsidiaries, the BlueChip Company. The quality differs on the basis of the destination of the chips. For home use, the weight is a bit less than a normal casino chip weighs, it is below 9-10 grams. If you have ever touched a clay chip you must have had the feeling of originality and authenticity. Holding them in your hand is a kind of ‘sandy’ feeling and when rubbing them they feel resistant. Clay chips have a depressed round middle for the inlay and around the inlay there are indentations, and stripes can be found around its edge. Depending on the rarity of the chip or the casino, clay chips are most likely to increase in value over time.
A ceramic chip is a slightly cheaper alternative to the true clay chips. Many casinos use this type that is made from plastic and they are injection moulded this is why they are so durable. Ceramic chips are often textured but their surface is always smooth and a dimple can be felt on the edge. The two most popular producers are Nevada Jack and Chipco. Ceramic chips have a kind of ‘clangy’ sound when they cling together.
Although they are often labelled as ‘real clay’ the main component is plastic. For home use, the cheap ones that you can buy at the shopping centres are perfect, but there are more heavy ones as well weighing up to 12 grams because they contain some inserted metal slug.
Big casinos always use clay chips. First of all, because it is the original one, second of all, small competitors cannot afford them (only the ceramic ones) and it provides more prestige to the place. However, most gamblers must share the opinion of an experienced gambler that the quality of the chip does not make any difference as long as the same amount of money is paid for clay, ceramic or plastic ones.