Pool has been a favourite game for ages. It’s fun, calming, yet challenging all at the same time. Above all, though, it is a social activity that’s best played while enjoying a drink in a bar or café with your pals. For years, the pool table has been a part of many game rooms and man caves. However, not everyone has the luxury of space for a huge table. If it’s the reason why you’ve been holding back on purchasing a pool table, here is the solution you have been waiting for: a dining pool table.
In this article we look at pool tables vs dining pool table and which is best for you.
In reality, dining pool tables are not a new concept. They have been around for some time now, but they have recently grown in popularity for the last two to three years. But what is it exactly and should you buy it or stick to the traditional pool table?
What is a Dining Pool Table?
A dining pool table is pretty self-explanatory. It is a 2-in-1 pool table that works as both a dining table and a pool table. You can switch from one to the other in just a few seconds. So, if a collapsible pool table is not an option for you, the dining pool table will surely do the trick.
With exemplary quality, you do not have to worry about sturdiness. The table works just as well as the average dining table, which means you can put food on it, including hot meals. Messy eaters should not be a concern, as well. Most tables are resistant to water and food spills. Just make sure to wipe and clean the surface after eating.
Pool Tables vs Dining Pool Table: Which is For You?
Let’s be clear. A dining pool table cannot match a good quality pool table. One problem with pool tables is that they require ample space, not just for the piece of furniture itself but also for the players to move around comfortably. You also have to think about the cue stick, which will be placed horizontally on the table. We have a guide that will help you determine the most suitable room size for your pool table. See it here.
Now, with that being said, you may not have enough space to accommodate the table, its accessories, the cue stick, and your friends. If you do not have a game room, there’s one spot in your house that most likely has the required dimensions. And you know what we are talking about.
Many dining areas have adequate space that can handle a few people. There’s also plenty of wiggle room. Also, you probably have your social activities with your friends in the dining area. It’s where everyone feels comfortable as they share a meal, some drinks, and stories. These attributes are why dining rooms are excellent for a game of pool. You can eat on a dining table and then convert it into a pool table when everyone is ready to play.
A dining pool table comes with multiple pieces, usually interlocked, which sit on the playing surface. You will place the pool table surface on top of the dining table or flip it over to convert. Some tables, however, use a more innovative way to improve and hasten the transformation process.
Several households prefer dining pool tables over traditional pool tables. However, if you have enough space and you want to have a better playing experience, we highly recommend that you choose a pool table.
In reality, there is not much difference between the two, especially for casual players. The components are pretty much the same, including the cloth, cushions, pockets, and slate. Therefore, your gameplay is never at risk.
However, if you have some experience playing on an actual pool table, you will observe a few dissimilarities. One is that the ball return may be a little bit slower than with a pool table. That is if you bought a table with a ball return system. The reason for the disparity is due to how the tables are used. A traditional pool table is most often used in commercial environments, whilst a dining pool table is generally designed for home and non-professional use. As a result, the internal ball return systems installed have a similar structure but are built differently.
Here is an overview of the system:
- Regular pool tables typically use an elongated sloped track that runs through the middle of the table. Potted balls roll down this track for easy collection. The balls then divert to the ball collection point for free play or the coin mechanism if it is coin-operated. There is a cue ball separator built in the table in most cases, which propels the cue ball to the baulk end of the pool table.
- Dining pool tables, on the other hand, have almost the same structure described above. You can often see the return system by removing the slate from the dining table. There’s the same central ball return channel, but the difference is that it has a shallower angle. This design allows the table to be used as a dining table, and that’s why the cabinet’s thickness is compromised. The result is the balls will take a little longer for them to return. But don’t let this rate discourage you from purchasing a dining pool table. Usually, the slowness is not that noticeable. Perhaps a more significant difference is that there is typically no cue ball separator in this table, causing the balls to travel directly to the ball collection site right away.
Another thing that you may recognise is the playing height. Still, it all depends on the quality of the dining pool table. If it is made by a reputable designer, such as Quedos, the difference is not that visible.
Buyer’s Guide for Dining Pool Tables
So, you have decided to buy a dining pool table. You will find that the market is not as saturated, unlike traditional pool tables. Nevertheless, it is still wise to know and understand what you need to look for. After all, it is not a cheap purchase and will most likely be a part of your day to day life considering it will also work as your dining table.
Without further ado, here is a guide that will help you choose the perfect dining pool table:
1. Look at the Price
You’re going to invest in a new table where you will be eating with your family and friends. It’s not a decision that should be taken lightly. Therefore, you should consider your budget and determine how much you can comfortably spend.
In the pool table world, “You get what you pay for” often applies. That’s because the quality of the pool table heavily relies on the materials used and the workmanship of the manufacturer. You want the best of both worlds, so pick one that meets your budget without hurting the quality, size, and completeness of the dining pool table. Think about the colour and design, too, since you will most likely put the table in an area where other pieces of furniture are around.
2. Determine the Size
Before deciding to buy a pool table, you should first have enough room for it. Luckily, most dining rooms and living areas are adequate for a 7 feet x 4 feet table. Don’t forget, however, that this table will also work as your dining table. Therefore, there should be space for the chairs. A seven-foot table can usually fit six to eight people. For most households, that is enough for everyone. You may need a bigger table if you have more family members.
3. Consider the Pool Table Material
This 2-in-1 pool table will undoubtedly be in plain sight. That means you and your guests will immediately see it in the room. In most cases, it becomes the focal point of the space. You do not want the centre of your dining room to bear an unsightly table. That’s why design and style will be crucial, and that usually depends on the material used.
Modern designs are sleek and simplistic. You don’t have to choose a vibrant coloured table or one with a busy design that will overwhelm the entire room. Although your pool table may be the pivotal piece of the space, it should still work with the other items, not engulf them. Having an interior theme can make the selection process a bit easier since you will already know what to search for.
While you can still compromise a little on the look and style, the material is something where you shouldn’t. Once again, this table will be used two ways and most likely several times a day. You want it to be extra sturdy and easy to maintain.
4. Find Out How the Conversion Works
A huge benefit of a dining pool table is that you can switch to a dining table or a pool table anytime you wish. But this benefit still depends on how you can achieve it. Some tables, although cheaper, may require a more laborious way of switching back and forth. You may even have to provide extra storage space for the tabletop. That’s why it is crucial to pick a more convenient way to switch and operate the table.