Buyers Guide: American Pool Tables

Billiards Boutique Guide to American Pool Tables

More and more people are taking the plunge and making space in their homes for a games room. This has seen a massive rise in the number of American Pool Tables sold in the UK, this is due to these factors, the variety of pool games that can be played, the colourful balls, easier corner pockets and modern styled tables on offer.

All American Pool Table have the following characteristics in common, spots & stripes numbered pool balls, straight cut pockets, rather than the rounded style seen in the UK on Pool tables and snooker tables, and non-napped speed cloth.

There are two main types of table available on the market each with differing pro's and con's we look at both below.

MDF Bed Tables

There are a cheaper range of American Pool Tables that feature an MDF bed, the bed of the table is the actual playing surface.

Due to the materials used and the manufacturing process costs of these table are kept down and dependant on the size of the table purchased can be bought for under £100. 

There are two main issues with MDF tables, the first one is warpage, over time the MDF can start to bow and is especially prevalent in damp conditions. This sounds horrendous but does happen over a period of time. MDF is not as long-lasting as the other type of table.

The second issue is that MDF bed American Pool Tables cannot be re-covered if the cloth gets damaged. The cloth is generally cheap to keep costs down and is only intended for light use by children and some of the larger tables, by adults.

MDF bed tables are also only available up to 7ft size with lots of much smaller sizes available designed for the home/childrens market.

One of the best tables that we sell with an MDF bed is:

Slate Bed Tables

The Second type of table are slate bedded and are made to championship specifications. These tables are a lot heavier and stay completely true over time. As a result of the work and the slate that goes into them they are also more expensive.

When buying a slate bed american pool table you are buying a quality product that if cared for will last a lifetime. 

The main issues against slate bed tables are the fact that they are very heavy and not very easy to transport and are only available in larger sizes of 7ft, 8ft and 9ft meaning you need a larger room to house them. They are designed for a lot of use as well so when compared to MDF the slate table is not something that can be moved about within a room very easily.

The other stumbling block in some peoples cases is the fact that the tables are naturally more expensive due to better quality materials and construction. Prices for American Pool Tables with a slate bed start at around £1500 and can easily go over £5000 for solid wood tables and championship models.

Regardless of the size of slate bed american pool table you buy you will find that it has the larger 2-1/4" American Pool Balls to play with, they are heavier and require larger tipped cues to make effective use of them. But by the same token you know you are playing on tournament standard equipment when using them.

All slate bed american pool tables can be re-covered, so if the cloth gets worn (as it will over time) then it can be replaced. This also means that when buying the table you can specify a cloth colour and table finish in a lot of cases. The same can be said for the majority of the parts on the table as well, if it is damaged or broken generally a replacement can be found.

Buying a Slate Bed American Pool Table is an investment for life so make sure you buy correctly.

Two of the slate bed models available from Billiards Boutique,

If you want some advice over room sizes or which American Pool Table would be most suitable for you please either email or call us on 01305 458071.

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