Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Casino poker chips are special tokens representing money. They are fabricated with complicated graphics and edge spot patterns intending to make them difficult to counterfeit. The process used to make these chips is well guarded and expensive - typically done on high pressure compression molding machines.
The typical material of construction is not clay as is sometimes believed, but a ceramic material with clay added for texture and weight. The breakable, clay chips of the 1960s and 1970s are no longer manufactured. The clay composition of modern chips varies by manufacturer, and is typically very slight (1-10%). The chip is molded around a smalled metal disc, called a slug, for weight and comes in several colors.
These casino style chips can be bought for home games, but typical price is cost prohibitive at approximately $1 per chip. Modern home poker chips can be bought much more affordably (less than $0.2 per chip) and approach casino poker chips in look, feel, sound, and texture. Common designs depict the six faces of a die or the suit symbols around the edge of the chip. They are typically manufactured with injection molding technology using ABS plastic.
For security reasons, it is better to have a unique set than to have the same set as others although this depends largely on your game and who you play with. If there is no security concern, having several people with the same chips is not a concern - in fact it may be better because it allows more people to play. If your game is high stakes, or with friends of friends and strangers, it might make sense to have unique, or custom chips.
Custom chips need not be anything more than a hot stamped or pad printed graphic on a common chip. An even less costly alternative is to add a sticker or a mark to the chips with a permanent marker.
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