View Full Version : Table Advice Please
09-07-2004, 06:57 AM
Before posting this, I did perform a search on the topic, and I have read a lot about tables and how some folks feel about them. I live in Baltimore, MD and spent some time with a dealer (Champion Billiards) who is very close to my home. I have not played regularly for at least ten years. I would like to join a league when I feel that my skill level is adequate for public display. It appears that league play in my area is done on 7 foot tables. I'm looking to buy a professional quality table. The dealer recommended the Olhausen Champion Pro and took me to the playing area where they hold their league play and allowed me to try several of them out. They seemed to play very well, but I spent only about 15 minutes on them. I would appreciate any advice that the folks here could offer. Regardless of the table that I finally choose, is it a sound decision to go for the 7 foot table based on the league play? I do have the room for a 9 foot table. Thanks in advance for your help.
09-07-2004, 07:10 AM
When I lived in Maryland I bought a 9 ft. Olhausen from Champions. I think you would be better off avoiding the 7 ft'ers.
Hey by the way they sell those things like cars...(huge discounts) /ccboard/images/graemlins/laugh.gif
09-07-2004, 08:05 AM
Not all leagues are played on 7' tables.
If you live on the south side of Baltimore, and don't mind a short drive, join a league at Champions, in Laurel. They have a number of leagues, APA, BCA and TAP, and they play most of them on 9' tables.
At least, the 8-Ball leagues are played on the 9' tables. For whatever reason, they play 9-Ball on 7' tables.
To the best of my knowledge, they have leagues on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, but there may be some on other nights.
I play on Wednesday. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif
BTW, I agree with Nick. Do not buy a 7' table, if you have the room for a larger one.
09-07-2004, 08:53 AM
Rich and Nick,
Thanks for the help. Don't forget to weigh in with your views on choice of table manufacturer. I have budgeted up to around $5000.00 for this investment.
I live 5 miles north and east of the city, and Laurel is bit too long for me to travel on a regular basis. However, who knows what the future may hold. I guess that it would be an easier transition to play on the 9 foot at home and whatever size table (7, 8, or 9) out than to adjust the other way.
casting my vote on the nine footer, and a set of good balls!
09-07-2004, 09:32 AM
Absolutely, positively, go with a nine footer. IMO its much easier to go from a nine footer to a bar box. Once your used to a big table everything on a bar table seems like short shots. Yes I know the bar box is more congested, but I think the benefits of practicing and playing regularly on a big table far out way the few difficulties of playing on a small table.
As far as table go, If I had that much in my budget I would be getting a Diamond without thinking twice.
09-07-2004, 09:45 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dtomasi:</font><hr> Don't forget to weigh in with your views on choice of table manufacturer. I have budgeted up to around $5000.00 for this investment.<hr /></blockquote>
If I had the room, I would buy a 9' foot, Diamond Pro table, but I'm not sure if you can get a new one, within your budget. You may be able to get one used.
There are a number of good Brunswick tables you could get for the price and they would be my second choice. I have an 8' Brusnswick that is just fine.
09-07-2004, 10:24 AM
I have emailed Diamond for more info. I may be reading their web site price list wrong but, it appears that I could afford the Oak model. Even if it winds up being $1000.00 over budget, I would rather buy once and cry once. Do they install in my area? In your opinion, what key points put them at the top of your list over the others? Do you know anything about their follow up support and service? If I am required to buy a used one, where's the best place to look?
BTW, I love your signature.
09-07-2004, 10:42 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dtomasi:</font><hr> I do have the room for a 9 foot table.<hr /></blockquote>Hi dtomasi,
In the long run, if you keep playing, you'll be happier with a 9 foot table. I'd just like to caution that you make double-damn sure that you have room for a 9 foot table before you buy one of them, though. There are people here with definite opinions about how big your space should be to support a 9 foot table (and side tables and chairs and music and maybe a bar, etc.).
In the short run, the Diamond Pro is a tough table, and just might make you think the game is too difficult at first.
It sounds like you're a beginner, so unless you're very certain that you want to make this major investment because you're going to stick with it for years and years and years, it might be worthwhile to invest in a used 8 foot home-style table. They have a little easier playing field with the slightly larger pockets, and they'll be great for preparation for playing on a 7 foot table. The 9 foot table is not as useful in preparing for 7 foot play, but it is great for developing your overall stroke. Then, when you determine that you do want to spend the rest of your life playing with these little balls, you'll have a better idea of what you want in a table.
Just a thought. Good luck with whatever you decide.
09-07-2004, 10:47 AM
Go with a nine footer - you won't be sorry. Think of it this way -
A. A majority of Pro tournaments are played on nine footers. There's a reason for that.
B. A nine foot table requires a higher degree of accuracy (straighter shots) because of the greater distance between pockets and rails. Hence as your game on a nine footer improves your game on smaller tables will improve even more. If you can get comfortable hitting shots from nine feet (actually 100 inches max) imagine how much easier it will be to pot them at seven?
C. Nine foot tournament tables are often better built because most of them are designed to be used commercially. Which basically means they are built to take a licking and keep on ticking.
D. If you buy a well-known brand Pro table your chances of getting most of your money back if and when the time comes to sell - is very good. People who are devoted to playing pool are often willing to pay for quality. For this reason and the bottom line pleasure of playing on a great table -Buying high quality should be job number one when it comes to a home pool table.
My favorite brands for NEW nine footers in order of very good, as good or better, and absolute best:
Very Good: Olhausen Pro
As Good or Better: Diamond Professional ( http://www.diamondbilliard.com/about.aspx )
Absolute Best: Gabriels Signature Pro - Made in Belgium but they are sold here in the US.( http://www.ballywulff.de/eng/a3/mid016.htm )
My favorite OLD sure-thing nine footers:
A. Brunswick Gold Crown I or II (NO III's) (1960's thru 1970's)
B. Brunswick Anniversary (Est. mid 1940's thru late 1950's)
C. Brunswick Centennial (1945 thru late 1950's)
Hope this helps.
09-07-2004, 11:12 AM
If you're absolutely certain the league you're going to join only plays on 7-footers, take SPetty's advice and get an 8-footer. Otherwise, I would get a 9-footer since you have the room.
It's always easier to compensate for a smaller table than a larger one.
09-07-2004, 11:29 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dtomasi:</font><hr> ... I do have the room for a 9 foot table. <hr /></blockquote>
How big is the room? I would recommend a minimum of 20' x 15 1/2' for a 9-foot table.
09-07-2004, 11:44 AM
Thanks to everyone who has contributed to my request so far. Just to clarify a few things. I have not played in over 10 years. So, for all intents and purposes, I am approaching this as a newbie. In my youth, I had played a little, but was never consistent and never very good. However, I have always loved the game. I call it serious fun. Now, at 51, I finally have an opportunity to have my own table, and I want to do it right. The room is in my basement clubroom (surprise, surprise) where I have an unosbtructed area 15' by 22' available to place a table. I may never play very well, but I will give it my best and enjoy every minute of it. This is my approach.
09-07-2004, 11:53 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dtomasi:</font><hr> I have emailed Diamond for more info. I may be reading their web site price list wrong but, it appears that I could afford the Oak model. Even if it winds up being $1000.00 over budget, I would rather buy once and cry once. Do they install in my area? In your opinion, what key points put them at the top of your list over the others? Do you know anything about their follow up support and service?
<font color="red">You will have to discuss all of the details with the people from Diamond.
I have only heard good things about this company. You could probably search this forum, for more information.
My opinion of the Diamond Pro is based on a limited amount of time I have spent playing on one. I just happen to like the table.
As SPetty has stated, it is a tough table. To me that is a benefit. To you, it may not be.
Take everything I state here as my simple opinion. You have to make the decision for yourself. </font color>
If I am required to buy a used one, where's the best place to look?
<font color="red"> IIRC, after the U.S. Open, they sell the tables that were used only for the week of the Open, at a very attractive price. I know they have done this in the past and I am only assuming they will continue. You may want to contact them. </font color><hr /></blockquote>
09-07-2004, 12:03 PM
09-07-2004, 12:22 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dtomasi:</font><hr> Thanks to everyone who has contributed to my request so far. Just to clarify a few things. I have not played in over 10 years. So, for all intents and purposes, I am approaching this as a newbie. In my youth, I had played a little, but was never consistent and never very good.
<font color="blue">You might want to stay away from the Diamond then. They have tight pockets and are for very serious players. Especially if your guests are going to play.
A Brunswick will play a little easier. </font color>
...an unosbtructed area 15' by 22' available to place a table. ...
<font color="blue">That should be enough for a 9-foot. Might be a little tight on one side. Maybe you should consider an 8-foot to start with. </font color> <hr /></blockquote>
09-07-2004, 02:15 PM
I was thinking the same as Wally, the diamond pro might be a little too tight to enjoy. But I would still go with a Diamond, just a little bigger pockets.
09-07-2004, 03:01 PM
[ QUOTE ]
...an unosbtructed area 15' by 22' available to place a table. ...
That should be enough for a 9-foot. Might be a little tight on one side. <hr /></blockquote>
Why a little tight on one side?
The Diamond site recommends 14' X 18' for its nine footer
09-07-2004, 05:45 PM
I think you will find some of the recommended sizes on different sites to be a little tight if that is actual wall to wall dimensions. My room is larger probably 18ft wide, but because of a workbench and table the playable area was about 14 ft. I finally had to move the table as it was just too close for me. If those were my wall dimensions I think it would feel way too tight.
09-07-2004, 06:03 PM
I hear that. I've just sold a nine foot Gold Crown II that I had set up in a room that was 18.5' X 24' with the head and foot set in the 18.5' width and the lion's share of the room left for sitting. Trouble was that I accidentally set the table off just about six inches too far one way. So I was fine shooting from the head of the table and just three inches too short on the foot end. I'm six four and when I stretched for some shots on that short side my back foot would bump up against the wall. REALLY annoying.
You're also correct in that the size of the room must also include an accomodation for a few pieces of furniture. People who aren't playing will need some place to sit.
However, having said all this I am still convinced that a nine footer would be my number one choice if the room can accomodate it - even if you have to sacrifice a chair or two to make it happen.
I'd put in the largest table that leaves you enough room to play comfortably. Never mind what you play league on, a bigger table will improve your game in the long run.
Having said that, your room is a tad bit tight for a 9 footer.
09-08-2004, 02:47 AM
Again, just to clarify, the room itself is 30' x 40'. The area (within the room) that I have set aside for the table is 15' x 22' which is centered width wise and at least 12' off of the north wall.
09-08-2004, 03:05 AM
Thanks for the link.
09-08-2004, 06:47 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dtomasi:</font><hr> Hi Wally,
Again, just to clarify, the room itself is 30' x 40'. The area (within the room) that I have set aside for the table is 15' x 22' which is centered width wise and at least 12' off of the north wall. <hr /></blockquote>
in that case, get a 9-foot. Definitely. It will make you a better player.
09-08-2004, 08:14 AM
I can't add to the discussion much here as everyone agrees that a nine footer is the ticket for you. I just might add that you might save a couple of hundred from your budget and get Scott Lee or another qualified instructor to come by and get you started on the right foot in resuming play after all this time.
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