I did write another reply, but I guess it got lost in space. :-)
Yes, they may have been replaced on the tables in the 90's not the 80's. I don't know, but that was the story I had heard. New owners, old chips. Hopefully someone else knows.
As for the $1 blue "At the sign of the red bull" it was approved in April 1995 and I was there months later, May and Fall and it wasn't in play. Now it's gone. Estimated time on the tables 2 1/2 years or less.
Nothing in Elko is available from the cage. I've tried and tried. Stockmen's and Commercial are the same owners. Tight as a drum. Gold Country and Red Lion, same owner, nothing from the cage. Although I must add that all the cage managers and casino people are extremly friendly as they turn me down. They all smile and chat with me, but say that they can't do it.
The repeating line is, we'll lose our license. Meanwhile we know that some places in LV do it, and Jax in Lovelock was selling them at the lunch counter. I guess they just don't want to do it.