Chequers Book Reviews
The Professor, Michael Knapp
The Chip Rack, 6th Edition<,, Ernest Wheelden, Allan Myers, Michael Knapp (1999)343 pages, wire spiral bound, $32 ($3.20 shipping), KMW Publishing Company, P. O. Box 17002, Dept. E, Louisville, KY 40217
(also carried by dealers)
[Disclaimer: The reviewer is one of the authors of The Chip Rack.]
The 1999 edition of what has become the classic catalog and price guide for Nevada casino chips is larger than its predecessors (80 pages and 2,000 more chips than the 1998 edition), and is the most complete listing of Nevada casino chips in existence. The Chip Rack is the leading source of valuation information for collectors of Nevada casino chips and checks. For any collector of Nevada chips, this book is a must-have.
"The Chip Rack" has maintained its unique numbering system since its first publication in 1993, and TCR numbers are now the standard means for collectors to refer to Nevada chips without having to repeat complete descriptions. Once assigned, TCR numbers remain the same for each chip, and when chips are removed from the book (determined not to have been Nevada chips, duplicate entries, etc.), their numbers are permanently removed as well. A complete list of deleted chips and numbers, along with the reason each chip was removed, appears in the back of the book.
The book shows the address and opening and closing dates of each casino, and bold print indicates new additions since the last publication. Also continued is the trend analysis: chips whose values have fluctuated significantly since the last edition are denoted with a + or - symbol, indicating whether the new value is higher or lower than the previous edition's value for that chip. A complete numeric index to the book allows collectors immediately to find the issuing casino for each chip given a TCR number. An additional feature is the listing for each chip of the date of its approximate issuance by the casino, a feature which can be extremely useful for casinos which have existed for a long period.
New to the 1999 edition is an extensive pictorial section. For some time, collectors have searched for a way to describe variations in chips from the same casino, to attribute chips which bear initials to particular casinos, or to distinguish between chips from different casinos. The "small type" and "large type" descriptions previously used are not very helpful unless the collector has both chips in front of him as he reads the description. The TCR Pictorial section is designed to help remedy that dilemma. More than 100 chips are shown in closeup, so the reader can determine which TC chips are attributed to the Tonopah Club, for example, and the difference between the "large type" and "small type" Caesars Palace poker room chips.
The extensive Introduction is a complete reference guide to collecting casino chips and the considerations such as quantity, condition, location, and the like, used to value casino chips.