Forum Archive : Equipment


From:   Gregg Cattanach
Date:   9 July 2004
Subject:   Re: Dice question
Google:   dpCHc.2196$

Matt Senecal wrote:
> I finished coating my cork board this past week. It looks good, the
> checkers slide really smoothly, but now the dice are giving me a
> problem.
> The set (an older one) came with two sets of standard dice: perfectly
> square, straight-edged. Before I coated the board they wouldn't roll
> much, and would just basically plop out of the cup (a rather small,
> snap together affair) onto the board. Now they slide -- quite well, in
> fact. Imagine a pair of ice skating dice, if you will....
> The lack of rolling gives me cause for concern, as this board is used
> for face-to-face play. I don't want there to be any accusation of
> cheating by any party. Before I shell out $30 for a set of 4 precision
> dice, does anyone think that they will solve this problem? I know they
> are made to roll, but on this surface I would expect them to roll, and
> roll, and roll.... Or is the lack of rolling with the standard dice
> even a problem, assuming that well shaken dice are going to come out
> random anyway?

You don't want to use straight-edged dice on your backgammon board for two
reasons, the 'skating' and sliding they will naturally do (instead of
rolling) and the sharp edged will quickly cut up the playing surface over
time.  Those are for the craps tables.

You really must get precision dice with the rounded corners and inlaid pips;
there really isn't any other way to go.  Many player will immedately refuse
to play if you don't have precision dice.  The smaller ones (1/2") roll more
times per throw, so many prefer them feeling them to be the most 'random'.
Also, the smaller ones cock less because they can land and not be cocked
between the checkers. Many people also like the medium size (7/16") because
they're easier to pick up. The biggest ones (5/8") are not popular at all
and seldom seen.

Get 4 dice in two colors and enjoy.  Carol Joy Cole has several choices, the
'Ultra-Precision' dice ($7 each) are really nice as the rounded corners are
made with a diamond lathe and come out with a highly polished surface on
those corners, instead of a matte finish. Under a bright light the
transparant ones can show highlights like jewels.  The other ones she offers
($5 and $6) are also perfectly acceptable.

Gregg C.
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