THERE will no doubt be many Weekend Shoppers who appreciate the cultural connection between Aussies and pool tables.
This iconic pastime is enjoyed across the nation in man caves and pubs alike. Despite the onslaught of technology, this game of skill and concentration continues to maintain our interest and incite the gamblers among us.
There’s nothing like enjoying a cold ale while challenging a mate to a game of pool on a warm afternoon. It’s an Australian institution.
Bayside Billiards owner Sal Rane has been building billiard and pool tables for more than 11 years. Mr Rane’s store in Mt Gravatt sells slate tables including accessories and delivery from $1550. He also recovers tables, provides interest free terms and a removal service.
“We do whatever the customer wants. We use Italian slate and English cloth and build solid timber tables. We can do square legs, or turned. Our tables are made to order. Customers can choose the stain, cloth and the type of fittings, either brass or chrome,” Mr Rane said.
“We also sell accessories like balls, cues, triangles, chalk, brushes, cue racks and lights among other things.”
Mr Rane has some tips for shoppers looking at purchasing a secondhand pool table.
“I get people who visit my shop and ask about secondhand tables,” he said.
“I tell them to check there are no holes in the felt because re-felting costs hundreds of dollars. For a typical 8x4-metre table, re-felting costs $600.
“People buying tables sometimes forget that they are very heavy and have to be moved to their destinations. We do removals around the Brisbane area. They start at around $200.
“It’s a good idea to look over the timber. If it’s really worn, it’s obviously had a life. If the timber’s good then the table’s generally in good condition.
“Roll the ball against the cushion rubbers and look for an even bounce. Make sure the bounce isn’t dull.
“I also tell people to make sure they look under the table and look up at the exposed slate. If it’s cracked; don’t buy it.”
Mr Rane and his team recondition tables and nearly always re-felt them.
“Depending on the quality of felt it should last around 10 years. Usually if someone comes in for a re-felt it’s due to carelessness or an accident with a pet. Not because the felt’s worn out.”
Shoppers will find secondhand tables under the Billiards/Pool section. Depending on size and quality advertised billiard tables can range from $2500 down to $350.
However, pool tables can start from as little as $100 for a 95cm by 177cm table including balls, square, cue, brush and chalk.
There is also a range of accessories such as snooker balls that have never been used, with wall-mounted score plaque selling for $60. Or Victoria Bitter fluoro pool lights for $250.
Following Mr Rane’s tips will ensure a secondhand table which meets your needs and prevents you having to chalk it up to experience.