The Craps Table

Here is the Craps table. I know there's a lot on there but once you start to break it down piece by piece, bet by bet you realize you don't need to be concerned with most of it. It's got four main sections: the Rail, the Betting Area, Proposition Betting Area, and the Bank. 

Overhead view of the areas of the table. The bank, the two betting areas, the proposition bets area, and the rail.

The Rail on a Craps Table

The rail is where you place your cheques. It’s divided into sections, and each section is for a player. After you buy in, you put your cheques in the rail sideways, and you're ready to play. Under the rail is a second rail where you place other objects such as drinks or an ashtray. Be careful using this rail underneath with your belongings. People leave their stuff on it, players spill their drinks on it, and I would be afraid of players pickpocketing a purse or anything similar. Just be careful down there. 

Proposition Bets on the Craps Table

This whole middle area of the Craps table is reserved for Proposition Bets, most of which are one-roll bets. It serves both sides of the table, so all 16 players can bet on this area simultaneously. And believe me, when they do, all you see is a skyline of cheques covering everything. It gets crazy.

Craps Table Betting Areas

You play the majority of the game in these two areas. The left side can serve up to eight players, and the right side another eight. You are playing the same game at the same time but on opposite ends of the Craps Table. The Betting Area is where you make your Pass Line BetsDon’t Pass BetsPlace BetsCome Bets, and Odds Bets.

The Craps Table Bank

The money the casino uses to run the game is called The Bank. Players’ buy-ins and color-ups come from there and are where dealers get their money to deal the game. The Craps Bank in this picture has a total of $260,800.

Are You Watching the Craps Table Limits?

The first thing is first: find the table with the lowest minimum bet. You’ll find tables at their lowest limits during the day or middle of the week and at their highest on the weekends. A $5 game can eat $100 in a matter of minutes so make your money last by finding the cheapest table. 

A black craps table limit sign. The minimum says ten dollars and the maximum says fifty.

What Is the Puck for on a Craps Game?

The Puck is double-sided and tells you which of the two stages the Craps game is in. One side is black and reads OFF. The other is white and reads ON.

When the Puck reads OFF it will sit in the Don't Come betting area. This is known as the Comeout Roll and is the beginning of the game. This is the time to make your Pass Line and Don't Pass Bets.

When the puck reads ON it will be sitting in one of the 6 Points: 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10. This is known as the Intermediate Roll and means the players are in the middle of the game. This is the time to make your Place Bets , Come Bets, Don't Come Bets, and any Hardways you may want.

Both Pucks must always be in the same position as the opposite side of the table. If you ever see either of these Pucks in a different position than the other you must tell the Dealer or Boxperson immediately because that's a HUGE mistake that needs to be fixed. 

Puck OFF
Player view from second base hook. The puck is sitting in the don’t come in the off position.
Puck ON
Player view from right of stick. The puck is sitting in the on position on point 6. There are a bunch of bets on place bets.

What Is the Stick for on a Craps Table?

The Stick is used to send dice to the players and collect them after the roll since some tables can be as long as 16ft. It is usually made of rattan, the material used in wicker, and is incredibly flexible, helping to navigate the dice around the layout. The stick is used by a dealer called the Stickperson, who uses it to run the game's pace, point at people who need to get paid  or push cheuques all over the place. It's pretty fun to play with the stick. 

Two purple dice with the roll of five being pulled with the stick.

Why Is There a Bowl on the Craps Table?

The Bowl is used to hold the extra dice not being used by the shooter. The Stickperson will lay the bowl down, place the remaining three dice inside, and place it against the mirror while the shooter is shooting. If a die or both dice land in the bowl during a roll then it is considered a no-roll. 

Up close view of the bowl with five blue dice inside. The bowl is sitting on top of the stick which is laying on the table.
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Before you ever make a bet on the table you should know the basics to playing the game.

The Pass Line and its Odds are the first bets you should learn on the Craps table

The most common bets after the Pass Line. These are fun to play with a lot of betting possibilities.

They work like the Pass Line and offer Odds that don't have an advantage for the casino. 

Also called the Dark Side, these players are saying the shooter won't be making points.