I like toys. I’m a big kid at heart. I’m too old to play with GI Joes and Transformers, so I like to buy and collect casino equipment. I even have a Shufflemaster Deckmate that I use for my 25 cent poker games that I play once a month with my friends.
I also like buying stuff on Amazon. You can buy all sort of gambling equipment and other gambling toys for your home game; however, sometimes, with Amazon products, you never know what you’re going to get. This is especially true when it comes to gambling equipment. You can’t always trust the seller’s descriptions, and I swear that sometimes the user reviews come from people who don’t have much experience actually gambling in a casino.
Also, unless you have access to actual casino equipment or the actual casino product, you never really know how close you are to the actual casino product.
In that spirit, as a long time gambling aficionado, I am going to do reviews of various products. I’ll be straightforward and honest. Home gambling equipment is rarely ever going to be close to the actual casino item, but you would be surprised.
I am not being paid by this seller. This is just my personal review.
Trademark Poker Craps Layout
I was looking for a craps layout so that I could start making simple instructional videos, and I came across this layout. The layout was $17.95 plus $1.35 sales tax. Gone are the good old days where you could buy anything online, and if it was out of state, you could avoid the sales tax. That’s life, ladies and gentlemen. The .gov casino holds the ultimate house edge, and you shall pay.
Here is a real world pic of the layout, once I opened it. No touch up of the product.
So it came a little wrinkled. That’s because it was folded in a little package. A little ironing removed the creases.
The layout is made of standard hobby felt. It is not casino grade material. I’ve only had the layout for two days and played on it once, but my suspicion, having used this kind of felt is that it will eventually pill (meaning the felt will start to pull up and make little felt balls). Do not expect casino quality felt.
The size dimensions are not actual casino dimensions. If you are looking to build a craps table with casino dimensions, this layout is not ideal.
The layout could have been expanded and the print could have been made larger. There was a lot of wasted material around the edges of the felt that could have easily accommodated a larger print area. As it exists, here is a picture of how a standard size casino chip would place in the numbers boxes. It’s a tight fit if there’s more than one player.
It can be argued that the unprinted area around the printed part of the felt is so the felt can be pulled underneath the table. But this felt is not ideal for building a table. The felt is the type of felt that will eventually slacken as you use the table and players rub against the felt. Also, it will pill too quickly to permanently staple into a table.
Even though the sizing of the print is off, the overall bets are correct. There is your standard pass line bet, don’t pass, come, don’t come, corner red bets, and a rather stingy field that pays ‘double on the bubbles’ (in craps parlance, this means that the field pays 2 times the bet if the 2 or 12 rolls because you see how the field has the 2 and 12 in a bubble-shaped circle).
There’s even an area for don’t come bets to travel (located at the top of the numbers box, above the boxes with the 4,5,6,8,9,10).
The center bets are missing several key bets that are very popular, such as the ‘C&E’ bet. Players love to say ‘C&E’. The letters just flow well, and when you’re playing craps, some of the craps parlance is part of the fun and romance of playing craps. I find saying C&E to be ‘cooler’ than saying, ‘give me a craps and an 11, half of this chip on each one’, which is what ‘C&E’ means if you throw in one chip.
Again, if the print area had been expanded, the C&E could have easily been accommodated.
Other bets that are missing are the World Bet and the Horn bet. You can make the bet individually, but there’s a cool and real casino factor to saying ‘horn’ or ‘world’.
Even though it’s an unfair comparison, I like to show the real deal casino version, so that we can see how close we are getting to the actual casino product.
COMPARISON TO ACTUAL CASINO FELT
You’re thinking, this is a $20 product from an Amazon retailer, there’s no way it can compare. That’s true; however, it’s still helpful as a gauge to the quality and accuracy of the product. Making this comparison also helps you decide if the product will be compatible with your uses.
Here is an actual craps table, refurbished by my friend Matt Lawrence out of Las Vegas. Matt uses actual casino craps tables that casinos have sold him. He refelts the table and polishes it up.
Here is a pic of the actual felt that would be used on a craps table:
Obviously, there’s a huge difference. But you should know that the felt being used on an actual table costs $120. The difference in costs is due to the material and the printing.
Actual casino felt is pill resistant. I’ve been to casinos where the felt had little a little bit of pilling present, but the Trademark Poker Layout will be an ugly mess if you have several craps sessions with your friend, and someone spills a drink on it. Actual casino felt is spill resistant. The Amazon felt is not spill resistant.
The Amazon product by Trademark Poker costs $17.95 + 1.35 tax, so you have to look at it from the perspective of how hard you will use the Trademark poker felt. If you are going to actually play on it with your friends for hours on end, I recommend getting an actual casino felt. But if you’re going to be a light user, or you’ll be using the felt to learn craps, then go with the Trademark poker felt.
So how close are you to an actual casino craps layout? Not close.
If you’re thinking of building a home craps table, this isn’t the craps felt to use. It will pill and be rather ugly after only a few sessions of moderate use.
However, the item does serve a purpose in that it will help you learn the game of craps. You’ll be able to learn at your own pace. You’ll also be able to roll dice with your friends on your kitchen table. Just make sure you don’t bring over a full table of friends.