Bar­gain bil­liards

The Courier-Mail - Weekend Shopper - - Marketplace - - KYLIE McIN­TOSH

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.

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