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  • When selecting the best pool table, the most important thing to think about is size. Not all rooms are created like pool halls with tons of room, and often, home rec rooms require something smaller than standard size. So measure before going out to purchase a new pool table, keeping in mind to add at least 10 feet to each dimension of a table to allow enough room for shots. Professional tables are 9 feet in length so a large amount of space is required, but as this list will show you, size isn't important to recreational play.Slate bed tables are the best to look for and, as such, are also the most pricey. They last the longest and offer the best play. Pool tables made of MDF (pressure treated wood) usually still give excellent play at lesser cost, but they are more prone to warping over time if not properly maintained in a controlled environment. Some MDF tables have steel rods, which limits warping and extends the life of these tables.This list will look at the best and most versatile pool tables for everyday use with the average household in mind, and each one has made the list based upon a variety of selection criteria. First, these picks utilize quality materials in the construction of each table, including the cabinet, the playing surface, and the felt covering on the surface. The cabinets are sturdy and crafted from strong wood and other high end materials so these tables won't sag or split (thus making the playing surface uneven). The playing surfaces, if not slate, are made of MDF or other reliable slate substitutes such as plywood, fiberboard or slatron. The felt will be a wool and nylon blend with a Teflon coating to keep the material durable and fast, so the balls react properly as they spin across the table.These tables were also chosen by considering the quality of their side rail and cushion quality, crucial areas where the balls bank across the table during game play, and if they aren't made of materials such as K-66 rubbers or other gum types, then the balls won't bounce accurately. You do not want any dead spots on a rail and these tables have been built with proper materials to avoid these problems. Finally, the legs are constructed to remain sturdy and stable for the life of the product as they hold the majority of the weight of the table; they’re securely attached to the support frames and built to withstand years of play.Each of these picks represents the best of these criteria in products that are available on the market right now. We also took assembly requirements into account, so keep in mind many of these table have different assembly requirements that could prove difficult for some consumers to navigate successfully without some professional help.
    August 18, 2015
  • When you're buying a set of pool or billiard balls, you're going to want to commit to a price first. If you're looking to pick up a set of balls for around $30, then you're likely not going to get a ball that's been approved by regulatory houses like the Billiards Congress of America, or the World Pool-Billiard Association. Their standards dictate that balls are made of phenolic resin (instead of the common polyester or plastic often found in many balls) and meet specific weight and spheric requirements.If you plan on purchasing a ball set that has met these standards, you will be dropping close to $200. But in the long run, you will likely be saving money as a result of this large initial investment. Balls that are not made of this special resin can damage the billiard cloth on your table with burn marks and pits. So consider how much you really want to invest in this purchase and then check out our five best picks. You will find ball sets in price ranges suitable for the most prestigious billiard halls in the world as well as the most comfortable living rooms in the neighborhood.We've chosen these balls for our list by following a number of specific selection criteria. We considered the type of materials each set has been made from, most of which are carefully polished phenolic resins or plastics that are designed to be crack-resistant and won't break down over time. We also considered diameter tolerance for that perfect spherical shape, which will greatly affect the spin of the ball during the game. Other factors such as balance and weight control both ensure that you get an accurate response from each ball, without these factors the ball will respond erratically, curving or bending inappropriately and banking off side-rails and other balls without any consistency or precision.These balls meet all of the required standards to ensure that they will play perfectly every time you break. Color precision and brilliance are also some of the factors by which we chose our balls, displaying easy to read numbers and bright, deep colors for eye-catching aesthetics worthy of your rec room. More importantly, these colors and graphics won't fade over time, keeping your balls looking their best for years to come.
    August 18, 2015
  • Choosing the best pool cue depends on the characteristics of the player. Everyone has their own style and preferential attributes in their equipment, so there's never really one cue that is perfect for all. But there are some basic guidelines you can follow to find the one that's right for you.Heavier cues are usually better for beginners, as it stays on line longer and may be easier for a novice to get some extra spin. Lighter cues make it easier to control the speed of the ball, but requires more accuracy and skill. The tip size is usually a matter of preference, though beginners should get a cue with a larger tip. Using a soft tip allows for extra feel through the shot, but a hard tip is more durable and retains its shape longer.Wraps are usually nylon or linen, though some come with leather or other exotic materials. If you are a beginner, it is best to test the different types since this is mostly a matter of personal preference. Pool cues can come in many different styles. Some players like cues that are more ornate and have many inlays or decorations; other players prefer a plain wood stick.Pool cues can be made of many different materials: wood, graphite, and even materials such as acrylic, titanium, and aluminum. Though graphite cues have become popular, most players still prefer maple wood. When buying a pool cue, you should expect to pay between $150 and $300, though fancier sticks can cost up to $1,000. In selecting picks for this list, we considered our choices along the following criteria; weight, shaft size, type of tip and tip size, style, and of course, price.
    April 04, 2014