View Full Version : 7' table pocket size recommendation

02-27-2007, 03:19 AM

I'm going to buy a Brunswick Highlander in the next few days and want to get the pockets shimmed. Can anyone suggest a good tight pocket size for the corner and side pockets for a 7' table? I want to make the table challenging to play on since I'm used to 9' tables, so I want to get the pockets shimmed.


02-27-2007, 10:13 AM
I'll give you my measurements, however, note that many players feel this is TOO much shimming! I made my pockets this small because I am learning and want to learn to aim very accurately.

Also I play mostly 8-ball and I can easily play position to have fairly easy shots. But if playing 9-ball, I frequently need to shoot fast shots with english/draw or extreme follow to get on the next ball. And due to throw with these shots, it makes it very very difficult to make these shots and pocket the ball.

I think most people would say double shim or half the reduction I made would be enough.

If you want to learn to shoot very accurately and it is just a practice table, you don't mind the frustration, etc. Then quadruple shim. But if it is for play and you just want it more difficult, I would say double shim.

One shim to me is adding one extra "pocket facing" on each side of the pocket.

Note that when the cue ball hits one of my shim areas, it dies. I want this because the cue ball should not be hitting that area. Does not exist on a regular table. And I should be making the ball in the center of the pocket.

If you want to be able to play off the shimmed area, you can have longer rail rubber installed to be in front of the shims.

My 7 ft. Valley table...
Before quadruple shimmed...
Corner pockets: 4 1/2"
Side pockets: 4 5/8"

After quadruple shimmed...
Corner pockets: 3 3/4"
Side pockets: 3 7/8"

02-27-2007, 11:28 AM
Billy Bob, I believe one can have the pockets...too tight.
I used to see a good pool player, but certified nut case, hit balls for hours, on a daily basis...on an already tight pocket table...using pocket reducers. (I'm a little nutty myself, since I got me a set)
All I thought was that he was ingraining a pattern of misses into his brain....on that 9 ft'r...he made around 30%, or less of those long shots...and since you can't really be also playing position....I think the whole effect was detrimental to his game.
My pockets are tight enough....and with the reducers...damn near impossible...I had these pocket openings copied from that same table he practiced on.
Here's a link to a few photos, and my new little tripod....that I hope will let me take some up close and personal photos/videos
web page (http://photoshow.comcast.net/watch/jg5CI4JE)

02-27-2007, 11:45 AM
I think if you have the corner pockets at 4 1/2 inches that would be about right. That is slightly tighter then most bar tables, the ones around here are 4 3/4 inches. It is too frustrating to play on pockets that are too tight and you wont learn what is possible either.

02-28-2007, 02:33 AM
Wow, those are tight pockets in those photos!

Since the balls are 2 1/4", if I want to be able to just squeeze two balls in the pocket, 4 1/2" seems right (or 4 9/16").

I'm thinking I'll go with 4 1/2" corner pockets and 5" side pockets. Does that sound sane on a 7' table for a good player? I generally play 9 ball exclusively and can consistantly run at least half the table, so I want to make sure the table is challenging but not painful.


02-28-2007, 02:38 AM
sounds like good measurements...I hope one of the instructors here though...give you their opinion.

03-03-2007, 03:50 AM
Here's something interesting... I went to the local Brunswick dealer and started measuring the pockets on the different Brunswicks on display (about 15 or so). The tables had corner pockets ranging from 4.75"-5.25" with side pockets consistently 1/2" wider, but they were very inconsistent from table to table. Some tables had 4.75" corners while others had 5" pockets with others at 5.25" and several stops in between.

The strangest thing was the Metro non-tournament table which had identically sized 5 1/8" corner and 5 1/8" side pockets! I thought the side pockets were supposed to be 1/2" wider than the corners.

So I ordered a Highlander today and requested 4 9/16" corner pockets with 5 1/8" (or 1/16") side pockets. Thanks for the feedback.


03-03-2007, 07:07 AM
So when they customize your pockets, do they do it with shims, or are the rails custom-cut to your specs?

03-03-2007, 08:23 AM
Depending on the game, pool is roughly 50% shooting and 50% cue ball control. Problem is, if you can't make the shot, cue ball control doesn't mean squat, so people tend to focus on shotmaking. I think that tight pockets further emphasizes this trend. But in the long run, being a 10 (out of 10) in shooting and a 3 (out of 10) in position play will just make you better than all the local bar players, not a serious player. So my advice is to forget about tight pockets and spend more time learning cue ball control if you find normal pockets so easy to hit.

Just my two cents. Good luck.

Wood Monkey