Quality Chalk – How Important Is It?

8th November 2016

Most casual players chalk up their cue’s like they were about to compete in the Olympic weightlifting event. But the funny thing is, many of us don’t actually know why we’re applying that chalk.

 This article identifies what makes quality chalk, and why. After reading this article, you should understand why players choose to chalk up their cues.

Why You Need Chalk

Chalk is a great aid in a game of pool or billiards. It adds to and regulates the amount of friction between the cue ball and the tip of the cue stick. The ‘chalkiness’, for lack of a better term, ensures that the cue tip doesn’t slip as it makes contact with the cue ball.

 Anyone who has played a bad shot knows that if the tip doesn’t strike cue ball in the exact right spot, you will send the ball in a vastly different direction than planned. Chalk helps to ensure that the contact made between cue tip and cue ball sticks.

What is Chalk?

The chalk used for cue sports like pool and billiards is made by crushing silica and the abrasive substance corundum, or aloxite (aluminium oxide) into a powder.

 It is said that the idea behind chalking cue tips come from the French. Apparently, they would grind their cues into plaster ceilings or walls to ensure that there would be friction between the tip and ball on contact.


Why You Need Good Quality Chalk

99% of shots are directed towards the dead centre of the cue ball. The friction provided by the chalk aids in providing a gripping effect on contact between ball and cue. Because of this, the chalk does quite a lot of work for you throughout the game.

A good chalk isn’t too soft and messy, nor is it too hard and abrasive. It should rest lightly on your cue-tip, ensuring that no shiny surfaces are visible. If you are unsure as to the quality of the chalk, rub a cloth lightly over your cue tip after you have applied the chalk. If it comes off easily, it is probably too soft. This means you’ll need to re-apply frequently throughout the game.


 How to Apply Chalk


The most important thing to remember when applying chalk is not to grind it on. This is a common mistake. Grinding the chalk onto the cue tip with the action of a pepper-grinder serves to shred away the tip and actually worsen the very situation you are trying to avoid.

 Instead, notice parts of the cue tip that are lacking in chalk. Then, using the flat corner sections of the chalk, lightly brush it over the revealed sections of the cue tip. You don’t need to apply a lot – just enough so that any shiny patches are covered with fresh chalk.

If you want to read more interesting pool and billiard related articles, start by exploring our blog page. Alternatively, you can come in and visit our store in Melbourne or Sydney or call us for more information about our pool tables or billiards table accesssories on sale. Call us in Sydney on (02) 9153 8838 or Melbourne on (03) 9553 1418.


How is a Pool Table Made?

26th October 2016

Pool tables are wonderful pieces of craftsmanship and high-quality tables require the best quality materials and professional workmanship. Here is how a pool table is made:

The Surface

Whether the table is designed for pool or snooker, the playing surface is traditionally made using a large slate slab. Slate is a large rock that naturally splits into flat segments. Slate’s ability to be flattened and polished into smooth equal surfaces has made it the best choice of material for pool tables.

As a sedimentary rock, slate forms all over the world. However, the highest quality pool table slates come predominantly from Brazil and Italy.

The Cabinet

To make the cabinet, you start with a large rectangular wooden frame made out of hardwood. The best frames are made using Victorian Ash, Tasmanian Oak, Tasmanian Blackwood, American Oak, and West Australian Jarrah.

Depending on the size of the table, a number of crossbeams are employed along with a centre beam to support the slate. These are connected to each of the corners with either metal brackets or wooden blocks. These interlocking beams support the slate to form the frame.

Tables range from having four, six, or eight legs. Some more modern table styles use a large base instead of legs. Depending on the quality of table, or the design preference, the legs can stretch all the way up to the base of the slate or they can reach just to the bottom of the frame.

Collection Chambers

Commercial tables, such as coin-operated tables, use a system of chutes so that pocketed balls can be collected or held.

This means that a system of chutes needs to connect to each of the six pockets. Using gravity, these chutes send the balls internally around the edge of the frame to a single collection point. When a player inserts the right coin into the slot, a lever is pulled that releases the balls from the collection area, into an open trough so that they can be picked up and placed on the table.

 The Rails

The rails are the boundary of the playing surface. Rails are normally made from wood, usually the same wood as used for the frame. Between the hardwood rail and the slate surface is a piece of softer wood that receives the cloth via strong staples.

Before the cloth is stapled into place, it is stretched over the cushion that rests glued to the side of the rail that faces the playing surface. The cushions are covered with the same felt cloth and allow the balls to easily and consistently rebound around the table.  

The Cloth

The cloth used on traditional tables is made out of wool or a blended fibre cloth in the case of American style tables. The cloth ensures a smooth and consistent surface. Whilst the traditional colour is green, modern tables can come in any number of coloured cloths.

Now that you know how it’s made, isn’t it time to pick up your new pool table? Talk to your nearest pool/billiards/snooker specialists and explore our complete range. Call us in Sydney on (02) 9153 8838 or Melbourne on (03) 9553 1418.

10 Pool Rules Most Players don't know

         18 October 2016
Have you ever been caught out by a pedantic player citing an odd rule? There are plenty of lesser known pool rules out there and some of them are enough to make our heads spin.

Here are 10 of our favourite lesser-known Pool rules:


1. Back to Black

If you hit the black ball on the break, the breaker automatically wins the game. This is the quickest and most unknown way to win a game. Rarely are people aware of this rule, but it can be invoked surprisingly often.

2. White Worries

Sinking the cue ball while you’re trying to sink the black is also an automatic loss. Also known as scratching, this rule can cause plenty of heartache for the almost triumphant pool player.

3. Two for One

If you sink an object ball and the cue ball, only the cue ball is returned to the table. It is not uncommon to see players fetch both balls from the pocket. However, since the shot was in fact legal, the pocketing of the object ball stands.

4. Table Trouble

Hitting the cue ball off the table will constitute a scratch but do you know what happens when a numbered ball is knocked out of play?
As well as a scratched floor, hitting a numbered ball off the table will constitute a foul. This means that the ball has to be replaced on the spot the balls are racked up on, also called the ‘foul mark’. When the cue ball is hit off the table, it is brought back to behind the ‘baulk line'.

5. Pub Rules?

Walk into any pub in the country and you will no doubt see a player perched on the edge of the table attempting an awkward shot. This is in fact, illegal. At least one foot must be kept flat on the floor at all times. If you lack the reach for a shot, you must employ the use of the bridge stick or choose an alternative shot. This rule may sound slightly over the top, but it stops the player from brushing or knocking other balls in the process of their shot attempt.

6. Breaking Down the Numbers

A break is only legal if four or more numbered balls individually touch the rail at some point before the break settles. This is a little-known rule that requires a quick eye to adjudicate.

7. Pre-Emptive Strike

The key to any game of pool, snooker, or billiards is accuracy. As such, most examples of inaccuracy constitute fouls or scratches. Another example is if you knock one of your opponent’s balls before striking your own. This is a foul. Often, games just play on as if the action was simply collateral damage. However, this action is a foul and should be treated as such.

8. Hands Off

It is a foul to make contact with the table in any fashion while the opponent is the process of taking a shot. Even seemingly banal actions such as grabbing the chalk, or leaning by the opponent’s target pocket are illegal. This rule is rarely enforced, but it is more regularly seen in competitions and is considered a common courtesy.

9. Sinking Your Game

Everybody knows that pocketing the black ball throughout the game means a loss. But did you know that sinking the cue ball on the opening break is also a loss? It is surprising how often this occurs and people play on.

10. Quick Contact

If the tip of your cue stick touches the cue ball for any reason, it constitutes a shot. If you’re using your cue stick to move the ball back behind the baulk lines, for instance, it counts as a shot and subsequently a foul.

Are you looking for a new pool table in Victoria? We carry range of pool, billiards and snooker tables from 7 foot, 9 foot, 10foot and 12 foot pool billiards tables on sale . Come in and visit us at All Table Sports in Sydney on (02) 9153 8838 or Melbourne on (03) 9553 1418.


Is a Pool or Billiards Table Right For You?

22 September 2016

Billiards refers to all indoor games played with spherical balls on a flat surface, in order to hit balls into their pots in a precise order. Billiards can be played in two major varieties: Pocket Billiards (played on tables with pockets) and Carom Billiards (played on tables with no pockets). The objective of pocket billiards is to pocket the balls, and the objective of carom billiards is moving the balls around the table in a precise fashion.
Pool, on the other hand, refers to a set of pocket billiard games played with one cue ball and 15 balls on a table with six edged pockets and knife-edged rails.
Let’s find out which game is right for you.

How to Choose the Perfect Pool/Billiards Table

When choosing your pool or billiards table, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Choose the right sized table for your needs. For instance, an 8 foot table is the standard pool and billiard table size. Smaller tables create clustered balls while larger tables make shot making longer and more difficult.
  • Before purchasing a new pool or billiards table, read testimonials from satisfied customers to ensure you’re buying the right table for you.
  • Always opt for enjoyment over economy. Paying more than $500 for a quality pool or billiards table may not seem like a good investment until you consider owning it for 40 or more years – giving your family and friends thousands of hours of enjoyment.
  • Consider accessories to enhance your playing experience. At All Table Sports, we offer: floor racks, clip holders, wooden ball racks, table brushes, and much more 

Questions to Ask Before Buying

A pool or billiards table is a major purchase (both financially and in terms of emotional investment), so before taking the plunge, here are a few questions you should ask.
  • Is the frame constructed of solid wood or plywood and particle board?
  • Does the frame support the slate on all playing surfaces?
  • Is the top rail constructed of solid wood or plywood and particle board? 
  • Is the cushion a full-profile, canvas-backed, Grade A cushion rubber?
  • Are the slates diamond-honed matched? 
  • If the slate is framed, is it backed with poplar or MDF? Plywood or particle board make for poor backing materials.
  • Is the billiard cloth constructed of a heavy wool/nylon blend cloth?
  • Is the leg constructed primarily of solid wood, and do the legs attach to the table to provide rigidity? If the legs are improperly attached, the table will move when you lean against it to shoot 
To view our full range of new, modern pool and billiards tables, visit our website or call into our New South Wales or Victoria showrooms

How to Keep Your Games Table Clean

15 September 2016


Regular pool or snooker table maintenance is important to ensure your table remains in pristine condition and so you can enjoy playing on it for years to come. As with almost any other cleaning job, the first step to cleaning your games table is using the right tools. Fortunately, you won't have to go all over town to find them – we supply everything at All Table Sports. The most important tool you will need is a table brush. 

Where to Start

When brushing your pool, snooker or billiard table felt, start by brushing off the bumper railings, as some dirt will fall onto the playing surface. Once the table is brushed, vacuum out the dirt from the floor. 

Keeping it Clean

When cleaning your games table, always remember the golden rule: always use a table brush, rather than a vacuum. A table brush will clean all dust and dirt is out of sight and out of mind. 
A pool brush is a handy tool to have in your games room as it picks up excess crumbs, abrasive chalk or dirt hit the table during game time. For optimum performance, ensure you have a soft bristle table brush on hand for light brushing. If you brush your game table regularly, you’ll get at least three years’ more life from your cloth.

Things to Avoid 

While it may seem like an inanimate object, your pool, billiards or snooker table is very sensitive. To keep your table in top shape, simply follow these tips:
Remove all hand and wrist jewellery. Even the smallest piece of metal could slash or rip your felt.
Don’t fling coins onto the table. While it may look cool, each coin creates tiny cuts in the felt which can develop into substantial tears over time. 
Ensure you limit chalking. We recommend infrequent chalking, as doing so between each shot imposes a heavy, lingering dust that can eat into your cloth. 
Drinks should be nowhere near your pool, snooker or billiards table. Your games table is so sensitive that, coaster or no coaster, drinks can create a condensation ring which results in permanent moisture damage.  
For more information on all things pool and billiards, visit our blog. If you’re ready to upgrade a new, modern pool, snooker or billiards table, visit our Sydney or Melbourne showrooms to see these magnificent pieces in person.

Creative Ways to Play Pool

16 August 2016

Pool – a Multi-Faceted Game 

Pool is a game with many variations. For example, billiards is somewhat similar to but it does not involve sinking balls into pockets. Instead, balls are struck against rails and other balls. Another popular variation is snooker. Invented by British soldiers, snooker is played on a slightly larger table than pool, using more balls. Those are just the tip of the cue when it comes to variations on pool. Here are several popular variations on the great table game and how you can play them.

One Pocket Pool

If you’re finding standard pool too easy, with too many pockets to choose from, One-Pocket Pool is the perfect game for you. It is very difficult, as each player must pot into a designated pocket. 
Place all balls randomly in the rack, with a player making the break by choosing a particular pocket they will use for the rest of the game. They will need to pot the ball in their chosen pocket for the entire game. 
Their opponent then nominates an alternative pocket and sticks with it for the game. You score a point each time a ball is potted, with the winner generally being the first player to reach eight points.
Some alternative versions of One-Pocket Pool see a player losing a point in the event of a foul. When a player makes three consecutive fouls, they immediately lose the game. 


The game Cut-Throat is a unique version of pool that enables three players to play at once. Unlike other pool games, the aim is to be the last player with a ball on the table. 
Within Cut-Throat the 15 balls are divided into three sets: Low Balls (numbered from 1-5), mid balls (numbered 6-10) and high balls (numbered 11-15). Each player is assigned one set of balls. Each player takes a turn to pot a ball, remaining at the table until he or she misses a shot.
If you mistakenly pot the cue ball each of your opponents is given a chance to restore one of their own balls to the table. A player with no balls on the table at any point of the game is forced to miss a turn until an opponent pots the cue ball.

Eight Ball


The phrase “behind the eight ball”, meaning being stuck in a bad position, originates from the classic pool game of eight ball. The game is played with 15 numbered balls (seven solid, seven striped, and a black eight ball, initially assembled in a triangular rack.
The object of the game is to sink all seven balls (of your type), along with the eight ball. If you accidently sink the eight ball while one of your other balls is still on the pool table, you lose. All shots must be called (i.e. you must say which ball you’re shooting into which pocket for it to count). 

Black Ball


Black Ball is Eight Ball made easy. The chief difference being that you don’t need to call your shots while making them. You can send your target ball careening wildly around the table, and if it lands in a pocket, it still counts. This simplified version of Eight Ball is popular for a casual game of pool, or on family game night. 
If you’re ready to purchase a new, full sized pool or billiards table, contact our friendly team today, or visit our Melbourne or Sydney showrooms to see our beautifully made, modern pool tables in person.

Tips for Hitting the Cue Ball

8 August 2016

It’s no secret that the most important ball on the snooker table is the cue ball. Unfortunately, it is also one of the hardest balls to manoeuvre. As it is the only ball you strike with your cue, your ability to control it is crucial in your ability to reign victorious as a snooker player. With a combination of practice, technique and following these simple tips, you'll hit the cue ball dead centre every time.

Technique #1 – The Stroke

Improper stroke technique is the single biggest reason for unpredictability in a snooker player’s game. If you fluctuate between good playing days and bad playing days, or simply find the cue ball isn’t going where it should, a poor stroke technique is usually to blame. 
Learning the Bottle Drill is the simplest way to improve your stroke. This stance involves keeping your head still, moving only the forearm while shooting, holding the cue stick gently, a clean follow-through, and moving only after the cue ball has stopped.

Technique #2 – Aiming System 

Most novice pool players do not realise that developing proper aim and hitting techniques are the most important skills to master when learning to play pool. If you’ve learned to accurately hit where you aim, all you need is a friend to show you where to aim the cue ball.

Technique #3 – Ghost Ball

The Ghost Ball is a simple technique which shows you where to aim without assistance. 
Firstly, mentally draw a line from the pocket to the ball you are aiming for to visualise the path the ball needs to take. Extend the line past the ball, and draw a line from the cue ball centre to the ghost ball centre. Align both feet and cue along the line of the ball and go down on the shot. Look at the pocket and the shot image (the cue ball and ball you want to hit). Lastly, shoot the ball using a good stroke with a smooth follow through.

Technique #4 – Fractional Hit

This technique involves dividing the ball into "slices" or fractions and aiming the ghost ball at the different "slices". The fractional aiming system works from the point of view of the shooter when they are down on the shot. Using this technique, you work backwards from the angle you need to find the fraction you need to hit. The edge of the ball is the easiest place to aim, and the easiest angle to recognise.

Technique #5 – Control the Cue Ball 

Slowly move the rear of your cue back and forth, like a horizontal pendulum. Gradually drift to the left until you are sure the aim is slightly off, then drift to the right until you're sure you've gone too far. Continue going back and forth (a little less each time) while you zero in on the point between the two extremes.
If you’re ready to buy a new pool or billiards table, visit or call the experienced team at All Table Sports today. To see our complete range of modern pool tables for sale, visit our Melbourne and Sydney showrooms, or visit our website. 

Create the Ultimate Family Games Room

28 July 2016


Creating the Ultimate Games Room – Bringing the Family Together

In today’s fast-paced world, there are so many things competing for your attention. From that urgent email to a pressing deadline or vital text message, it’s easy to lose sight of what really matters – quality time with family and friends. As a consequence, family time tends to fall by the wayside. 
Nurturing family relationships is essential, but it doesn’t need to be as difficult as you think. It can be as simple as family game night. Fun for all ages, a pool, snooker, billiards, foosball, or air hockey table is the perfect excuse to catch up with loved ones.
Here is our guide to creating the ultimate family games room.

Creating Fun Central

Modern homes offer so much more than basic necessities. With home entertainment on the rise, dedicated game rooms are fast becoming an integral part of many contemporary homes. Whatever your game of choice, a fully kitted-out games room will transform even the most ordinary of homes into fun central.
How to Create Your Space
There is much more to creating the ultimate games room than you may think. The first step is to clearly define your theme. Theme selection is crucial, as it determines the mood of the room. Your theme will decide exactly what is featured in the space and create a social, welcoming atmosphere. Creative theme examples include 50s, Western, Rock n Roll and Sports Bar, to name a few.

Focus on Comfort

Comfort is a crucial element to creating a fun, sociable environment. A comfortable space will help your guests feel at home and turn every games night into the main event.
For instance, cushioned, upholstered couches and accent chairs will create the perfect vantage point to watch that next pool, snooker or billiards showdown. Or, for an even more laid-back viewing area, opt for plush recliners, complete with cup holders. To complete the look, adding a large, plush area rug will add a dimension of warmth, comfort and colour to the room.


Add Mood Lighting 

Lighting is the key to a stylish, safe games room. Ensure every game table is well lit, so players can concentrate on their game without straining their eyes. Rows of pendant lighting or elegant chandeliers above each gaming table will provide adequate light and style. 

Consider Traffic Flow 

Before making any style decisions, consider traffic flow throughout the room. Arrange your layout so guests don’t need to manoeuvre around furniture to access the pool, air hockey or snooker tables. 
If you’re ready to put the ‘fun’ into ‘family time’ visit our  Melbourne and Sydney showrooms, or check out our complete range of modern, full-size pool tables, air hockey tables, foosball tables, and multifunction tables. 

Make the Most Out of a Small Living Area

17 June 2016

From rumpus rooms to lounge rooms, the living areas in our homes are some of the most laidback spaces we have. That's where we relax with friends and family after a long day at work, swapping stories and recharging our energy. A small living space can hurt this warm vibe, making the room seem confining, rather than inviting. Fortunately, there are some simple ways to make the most of your living space – no matter the size. 

Maximising Your Space


The living area is often the first room your guests set foot in when entering your home - so first impressions are important. If your living area is smaller than most, every last detail counts. Since your living space sets the tone for the entire house, it makes perfect sense to outfit it with a pool table, or better yet, a combination pool table/dining table. Installing a new pool table or pool table/dining table will instantly transform your home into party central – your friends will never want to leave!

Benefits of Multifunctional Furniture


Too much furniture and not enough space to display it? This is a common problem facing many Australian home owners. Luckily, there is an easy solution which will maximise your space and add an element of style and functionality to any living area – utilising multifunctional furniture.
Multifunctional furniture will ensure your furniture does not overtake the space, leaving you plenty of room to entertain. And, if you’re a regular entertainer, that pool table which doubles as a dining room table comes in handy again. This innovative piece of furniture will give your living area two distinct feels –mixing formal entertainment and laid-back activities. 

Placement is Key

Placing your furniture in the correct position will create the impression of more space in a small room. If furniture obscures your view of the room, it will appear cramped. To avoid this, place your pool table against the wall to create more open space. Also, the longest line in any room as the diagonal. So placing a pool table at an angle will lead the eye to the longer distance, thereby making the room appear larger.

Create a Laidback Vibe


Installing a pool table, billiards table or snooker table into your living area will instantly create the laidback vibe you have been searching for. Any of our stylish pool, snooker or billiards tables will transform your living area into the entertainment capital of the neighbourhood. 
Our high-quality pool, billiards and snooker tables create a classic pub feel – all without having to leave the house! Whether you're hosting a dinner party, having a weekly pool tournament with the guys or game night with the family, All Table Sports has the perfect table for you.  
Discover exactly what your living area has been missing by viewing our pool tables/dining tables online, or visit our showroom. Our full size, modern pool tables are the perfect addition to any home. 

Different Types of Cloth for My Pool Table

07 June 2016


Pool table cloths comes in a few different qualities and styles. The main characteristics that separate different cloths are the way the cloth is woven, the quality of material and the way it is manufactured. A standard pool table cloth is made from a combination of either wool and nylon or wool and polyester. There are usually two types of cloth: wool and worsted. 


Wool Cloth: What You’ll See Most Often

Wool pool table cloth, or “felt” is thick and heavy and made with 95% wool. Also known as “napped” cloth, it has a raised surface due to individual fibres being “teased” out by brushing the surface in one direction. This way, when you run your hand over the surface in one direction it will be smooth while the other direction will offer a bit of resistance. 


The reason this type of felt is so popular is that it is typical of snooker tables origionally, but also used for English pool and causes the balls to roll  much faster  away from the breaking end  and slower coming back due to the resistance placed on the ball from the nap. This woollem blended cloth is used in most world ranked professional snooker tournaments, but can also be used on your casual home pool table, this felt will provide great play and longevity.


Pros of Wool Cloth

Some of the main benefits of choosing a wool cloth for your table are: 

           Considered easier to install, as it is stapled, not glued like worsted cloths.

           Available in a variety of colours

           The weaves of the fabric hide dust and chalk particles better


Worsted Wool: High Quality Surface

Worsted wool has a completely different feel than felt. Indeed, you can truly see the weaves in the fabric and it feels something like a woven suit when you touch it. This allows the pool balls to roll across the surface much faster, both down and back up the table, which is why you’ll see this material more commonly used in professional 9ball  tournaments, or in homes with seriously enthusiastic American 9 ball experienced players. 


There’s a reason worsted wool feels so nice to the touch. It’s made from the finest combed wool in the world and manufactured using specialised machinery. No pilling on this cloth, just smooth sailing, and does have a feel of an extremely good suit material. 


Benefits of Worsted Cloth

Some of the major pros of using worsted cloth are:

           Faster running balls, consistent speed, back and forth across and down the table.

           Longer lasting and far more durable due to high polester content, with no pilling risk.

           Easy to clean dust particles or chalk particles that sit on surface of extremely tight weave

           No regular brushing required. Low maintenance



At the end of the day, the type of player you are and the type of game you wish to play will very well dictate the type of cloth you choose for your pool table, Ameriacn 9ball pool game style, or English snooker/pool game style . To achieve the best result out of your game you need to choose the right table with the right cloth/felt.


All Table Sports Australia in Sydney supplies some of the best pool tables in the country. If you have any further questions regarding the cloth on your table, don’t hesitate to give us a call today!


What Other Purpose Can I Use My Pool Table For?

30 May 2016


Pool tables are a great addition to any games room or pub, but they are rather large. You might want one for your home but don’t want to take up too much space. Or maybe you just prefer finding functionality in all things, choosing to use your pool table for multiple purposes. If this is the case, there are a few different ways that you can use your pool table.
We at All Table Sports Australia in Sydney are the experts in pool tables and games room fun. Check out some of our ideas for other ways to use your pool table.

Add Some Table Tennis or Ping Pong to the Mix


Why limit yourself and your space to just one type of sport when it’s easy to convert your pool table into a ping pong table, as well? You can easily buy a ping pong conversion top that you lock down when you’re ready to play a little table tennis and remove when it’s time for pool.
We offer a unique universal table tennis top that attaches to your pool or billiards table with four clamps. This is perfect for not only your billiards table but also your dining room or air hockey table, as well.

You Could Eat Off It

For a table that big, it would be a shame to not be able to use it for sharing meals, drinks and stories. A great idea for other uses for your pool table is definitely to convert it into a dining room table. The DIY version of this would be to find and cut a piece of ply wood to fit the top of the table, but unless your table is ancient and worn anyway, you probably won’t want to do this because you’ll add extra wear and tear by placing and removing the board. 
The best way to make your pool table double as a dining room table is to have a little foresight and just purchase on that converts easily, like our 7 Foot Riley Westminster Table or our Euro Deluxe Table. 

Have a Game of Poker

A games room is not complete without a bit of good-natured gambling. Have the boys over for poker and cigars after a round of pool. The best way to achieve this man cave mastery is to use the pool table’s original plastic cover to protect it from a poker table cover. Make sure it’s tightly and snugly fitted on the table so you have a flat surface for stacking your chips and throwing down suits. 

Try an Air Hockey Conversion

Now this isn’t something that you can just do on your own, unless you’re a very handy and determined person. Air hockey requires pieces like fans to make the hockey puck fly across the table. If you’re a little bit less handy, or don’t want to ruin your table, simply go for the gold and purchase our ingenious, Australian-made air hockey/pool table – perfect for your and perfect for the kids.   

Contact All Table Sports Australia today to find out how you can get the most out of your pool table. 


How Often Should the Cloth on My Pool/Billiard/Snooker Table Be Replaced?

6 May 2016


Changing Pool Table Cloth


There’s nothing nicer than racking up your pool balls for a friendly game on a clean, new cloth surface. Depending on how often your pool table gets used, you may find yourself changing the cloth more or less often. For example, if you own a table at a pub, you’ll get more wear and tear out of it than you would if you just have one in your games room at home, therefore in a commercial setting table cloths are changed more often than in a domestic enviroment. 


We at All Table Sports Australia sell high quality imported and Australian-made pool tables out of Sydney. You might say that we’re experts in the field, and you might be right. Keep on reading for a guide on changing your pool table cloth.


How Often Should I Change the Cloth?

Like we said, the frequency of cloth or felt changes depends entirely on how often you use the table. It also might depend on how messy you’ve been and how much damage you’ve caused to the table. But for argument’s sake, let’s just say that you keep your drinks away from the felt and you never let kids angle the cues wrong and dig the tip into the felt. 


If your table is at a pool hall and you care about the way it looks, changing it every 6 months is ideal. At a pub where the tables are used, but not too constantly, every year or so should keep the customers coming back. At home, you most likely won’t need to change it that often and can leave the same cloth on for several years. 


How to Tell If I Need to Change the Cloth?

If you’ve spilled something obvious on your pool table, it might be time to get it re-felted. Otherwise, one way to tell if you need to change the cloth is by looking at the rail near the pocket mouth openings, commonly refered to as troughing. If you can visibly see a path from the balls, your cloth is worn and needs a change. Obviously if there is a tear in the cloth, you should change it so that there is no disruption of the balls on their pathways to pockets. Lots of dots on the cloth/felt  by the baulk line and "D" , and where you rack the balls to start a game may be due to  people having hit the felt with the cue, doing ball burns or jumping the pool balls, vigorously moving the triangle rack back and forth into position. 


Increase the Lifespan of Your Pool Felt

First things first. Keep food and drinks well away from the table. Make sure your friends don’t use the bumpers as cocktail tables that might lead to spills. If you do spill something, make sure to clean it right away with a warm, wet cloth and let it dry completely. 



Need help re-clothing your pool table, or perhaps you need a table to start and you’ll worry about changing the felt later? Contact All Table Sports Australia in Sydney to add what’s missing to your games room.  

Why Are There Different Sized Cue Sticks?

29 April 2016
Cue sticks, otherwise known more colloquially as “cues” for those who are in on the table sports world, are a piece of sporting equipment without which we could not play the entertaining and skilful games of pool, snooker or billiards. The size of each stick varies based on the game you’re playing, how well you play and even the size of your hands. 
At All Table Sports Australia, we take our games very seriously, so we like to make sure everyone is using the right size cue stick. If you don’t know why there are different sized cue sticks, it will be hard to choose the right one for you. So, to be a more informed player, check out our rundown of the reasons behind different cue sticks.

Each Game Has a Different Size Stick

Depending on the name of the game, you’ll have a cue that is made of different material and cut to a different length and diameter. 
Snooker cues, usually made from North American straight grained ash, are usually around 57 to 58 inches in length with a tip diameter that ranges from 9 to 10.5 millimetres. English style pool cues are 57 inches long with a tip diameter of 8 to 9.5 millimetres. American style pool cues can be anywhere from 57 to 58 inches long with a bigger tip of 12 to 13 millimetres in diameter. Ramin cues, usually used in pubs, are 57 inches long and 8 to 9.5 inches in tip diameter. 

Varied Length of Tapers

The shaft is the entire upper section of your cue stick. If you have smaller hands, you’ll want a cue that has smaller diameters and tapering. The flexibility of the cue is dependent on the length of the taper. 

Weight Matters

When discerning differences in cue sizes, don’t forget about the weight of the sticks. Each cue usually weighs anywhere from 485 grams to 595 grams. The most common are 539 and 566 gram cues. The pole stick weight directly affects how the cue hits the ball. When deciding how it fits in your hand, make sure you also pay attention to the balance based on the way you hold the stick and the weight of it.

Where Are You Playing?

Cue sticks can also vary in length and size depending on where you are playing. If the space you are in is small, or has the potential to lose room around the table, sometimes rather small cue sticks are required to make the shot you need without hitting any walls, surrounding furniture or loitering spectators. 
All Table Sports Australia is your number one supplier of pool, billiards and snooker tables and equipment, as well as a range of other games room sporting tables. If you have any further questions about different sizes of cue sticks or need help choosing the right stick for you to optimise your game, contact us today.



Choosing a Pool Table

 10 June 2017



Essential Elements

1. Table Size

Table size come in 7’, 8’, 9’, 10’ and 12’ size, which one you choose will be dependent on room size and your budget, affordability, browse through our online display to see what interests you best.

2. Type and Style

  • a. Traditional English Style
  • b. American 9 Ball
  • c. Contemporary / Modern
  • d. Dining top combination
  • e. Coin operated tables

Type and style of table is not limited; ATS presents classic traditional turned leg tables, American style, contemporary modern and tables with dining tops, as well as coin operated pub tables. A table for all occasions and surroundings are available, be it for a club, private use domestically, all tables whether you choose one or the other, all have outstanding quality and finish. Playing sizes and finish are consistent with the build specifications and nature of the chosen game as used in professional tournament play.

3. Cloth / Felt Colour

There is a variety of cloth colours available to help you create the perfect aesthetic look for your pool room, traditional English tournament cloth or American style speed ball cloth each with its own merits to satisfy the desired game style.

4. Timber / Wood Finish

Tables in the range are hand crafted be it a stand-alone pool table or one that convents into a dining table all available in Tasmanian Blackwood, American Oak, West Australian Jarrah, namely a few exotic timbers to ash hardwoods, both Tasmanian and Victorian. These timbers being finish in their natural colour highlighting their grain, texture and character, or colourised to match and suit the décor of the environment that they fitted into.


Cue Stick Fundamentals

After purchasing your table, the next important item is your cue stick which is used to move and position the balls around the table and place them into the pockets.

When people are buying their cue they select it, in most cases based on what it looks like.

 It may very well look nice but that maybe the extent of its appeal; it would be better to have a good playing cue than a great looking cue, the difficulty is how to tell the difference, the best way is to look at the components of the cue.


  1. Affordability: We want to buy a good cue, people associate price with being a better cue and in most cases this is correct as elk hide leather tips are used, English ash or Canadian maple timber is used for the shaft and can have exotic timber such as black ebony, rosewood, tiger wood, coco bola, etc in a machine or hand 4 point plain or orbital splice in the butt. Select a cue that feels comfortable in your hands and that’s in your price range, if it also looks good cosmetically it’s a bonus.
  2. Player Skill Level: What standard of player are you, or the person that you are buying for? Most beginner players can find a good dependable cue without spending too much. Later as skills improve and you play more often both at home and away, you may want to consider an upgrade to cue which has more quality and substance.
  3. Performance: As a player becomes more serious, he can consider a more sophisticated cue with greater cue technology. To increase performance and the life of the cue, never store the cue in a leaning position or in extreme hot or cold conditions.
  4. Style: Make sure that you choose a cue that suits your personality and that it’s going to do what you want it for. Once a cue has met all of the above, and is within certain price range, the quality of the cue does not vary much. The difference in price then applies more to the cosmetics than the function.
  5. Weight and balance: The best weight for any player is the weight that feels most comfortable for all types of shots. Different weights can produce slightly different shots; those differences are so slight that most people can adapt their stroke to get the desired results regardless of the chosen weight. Some cues feel butt heavy which can cause the player to grip cue too far back to compensate, or the tip will pull up during the follow through due to excess weight in the back.

In General: Selecting a cue.

Cues are 1 piece, 2 piece and ¾ with butt extension piece they have both good and bad qualities. A good 1 pce cue will probably cost less than a good 2 pce cue and a good 2 pce cue will cost less than a good ¾ cue. The downside of a 1 pce is that it is difficult to carry about and it begins to warp, as long thin pieces of wood tend to do, this is difficult to overcome.

Two piece cues, being split in the middle can reduce the stress on the timber and lessen the incidence of warping and it is more convenient to carry about.


Knowledge Fundamentals - Table Tennis Table

Table tennis ,originally referred to as “ping pong”, is a game played like tennis and can be played by 2 players, or 4 players hitting a lightweight ball back and forth using table tennis rackets,  on a table which has a  standard size of  9FT x 5FT (2.74 m x 1.52m) and 76cm in height ,  the table tennis game can be  played  indoors or outdoors, it is great fun for all the  family.
The official worldwide governing body is the ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation), founded in 1926. Since 1988, table tennis has been included as an Olympic sport.
Skills need to be developed to get the most out of the game; the play is fast and requires quick reflexes to gain the advantage. To gain advantage a player needs to develop such shots as the loop, top spin, back spin, flat attack, chop etc, the more skill a player has the more fun it is and advantage gained.

 What to look for when buying a table tennis table:

1. The thickness of the table tennis top can vary between one of the following 25mm, 18mm, 15mm, 12 mm, or 6mm.
 The thicker the top, the better the bounce. A table should produce a uniform bounce of approximately 23 cm when a standard ball is dropped onto it from a height of 30cm.

2. The top is made of MDF (Multi Density Fibreboard), there are different grades of MDF board, the harder board is better, (produced under 860 psi:  pounds per square inch).
3. The table must have a steel frame under board, without a side steel frame, even a thin steel frame, can cause the top to warp or have an uneven surface.
4. The table leg frame should have a steel thickness of at least 1.5mm. Tables can collapse    if the steel legs are less than 1.2mm.
5. The surface paint should be smooth and even. If it’s sprayed using a multi head machine, there are no spray line marks at all on surface, if it is hand sprayed, there are wavy lines    everywhere over the surface.
6. An outdoor table can be exposed full time to all weather conditions. No MDF based table can be considered totally weather proof, also beware of tables  described as  outdoor tables when they are only  painted tables, these  tables are MDF based, they are not  suitable for outdoor use.


Knowledge Fundamentals : Air Hockey Table

The air hockey table game has been taken from the ice hockey arena .
It uses the bats (Pushers) to hit the pucks into goal to make a score.

At commercial game arcades, the air hockey table size is either 7FT or 8FT.

Air hockey tables have many manufacturers and quality standards vary greatly between one manufacturer and another.

The most important element is the play field and cushion bumper rail.

A good play field relates to speed and length of games.

There are three types of play field built on air hockey table:

A. Play field:

1. Metal play field- this type of  play field can  be seen in commercial areas, such as an arcade and amusement parlors, the play field is tough, but when it  is dented,  there is no solution to repair it.

2. Perspex play field- this type of play field can also be seen in arcades and amusement parlors, the field is smooth and very tough, widely used for commercial or high end home use table.

3. Formica play field- this type of  play field  is very tough and durable surface, it last about 3 times longer than PVC coated surface. This type of surface is used for high end home use table.

4. PVC play field - this is a more economic method. It’s a thin layer of PVC coated over MDF board, it’s for an economic product range, the PVC play field can be worn out within  6-12 months, if table is  not cleaned  regularly enough  of surface dust.

5. Paper coated surface -this is the most economic way to make the play field
surface, the coated paper can be worn out in a short time with only a few games being played.

B. Cushion Rail.

1. Good quality air hockey tables are built with steel or aluminum side rails, they stand up to frequently being hit and no damage is sustained.

2. Economically produced tables use MDF built cushion rail, it often gets chipped or torn  quickly due to  the impact from  pucks and  bats  which frequently hit the end rail.


Knowledge Fundamentals : Billiards, Snooker, Pool Tables

In Australia ,we commonly refer to all types of  cue sports tables as a  "Billiards table", which is a general term to encompass all types of games that can be played on these tables,
when in fact  there are different categories of tables : Snooker, Pool ( or 8 Ball). Billiards, Carom, Russian Pyramids.
The most common tables for home (domestic) or business environment’s are Pool tables or Snooker tables.

 Pool table: A pool table is commonly used in a home or pub, and can be 7ft, 8 ft, 9 ft, in size. Pool tables can be described as Australian pool tables and American pool tables.

(A) Australian pool table:

The Australian pool table is the reduced size  snooker table, typically a snooker table size is understood to be 12 ft x 6ft, but the game of snooker can and is played on smaller sized tables. The typical sizes are 7ft, 8 ft, 9 ft, it has one piece slate 19mm in thickness, it has a directional napped cloth, it has 6 pocket openings with cotton crotchet net pockets, or empire rail pockets to capture the balls.

What to look for when buying a  pool table:

1. Make sure the slate is standard at 19mm in  thickness and is one piece. The slate comes from one of three sources : Italy, Brazil or China , originally and traditionally Italian slate was the best known and most used in the  industry,  however due to economic circumstances   Italian slate has now become more expensive, alternate supply had to be sourced. Some of the major Italian slate manufacturers moved their machinery and technology to Brazil. The Brazilian slate has become popular and the quality is as good as Italian slate, also, Brazilian slate is harder due to the mineral content, it has much less chance to warp caused by variation in temperature and moisture.
Chinese slate: It’s a good natural stone, however, because there are so many slate manufacturers in China there is no consistency in the production methods, the technology, the machinery and quality control is below standard and the result is a slate that is not acceptable.

2. Cloth: The cloth used to dress the table must have a directional nap (i.e, if you run your hand lightly over the cloth down the table away from the breaking end it feels flat and smooth to the touch, going back in the opposite direction it feels prickly to the touch). Cloth is produced in England, Spain and  China.
The best cloth is English made, branded Strachan6811. There is no material which can provide so suitable a surface over which a ball can travel with the truth, steadiness and quietness that the cue stroke demands as this fine woollen cloth. This cloth is the official cloth used for all world championship and major tournaments, it’s made from 100% pure new wool. When the cloth is new, it appears to have a beautiful sheen which no other cloth can match in appearance. There is a long tradition of craftsmanship behind the making of this cloth.
Spanish cloth is good enough for home or business use, but the cloth colour is not as rich and dense and is less attractive than English made cloth.
Chinese cloth is tough, normally containing some man made fibers, polyester or nylon together with wool or cotton, as a result this cloth tends to ball or fluff up just after a few games.

3. Pocket openings and assembling.

The entrance to the pockets has a bearing on potting ability. Both pool or snooker tables need to have a certain shape to maximize potting ability. An official template is used on authentic and true tables to shape the entrance of the pockets as there is a certain way to shape and cut the edge in this area, therefore, when the ball hits the edge it drops into the pockets. 
A common problem which is seen with improperly made tables is that the ball hits the   edge at the top of mouth of the pocket then the ball bounces between two rubber edges which is the result of incorrect entrance shape and cutting of the rubber.
When assembling cushions, the manufacturer should use the template to measure every pocket to ensure all corners are the same size and shape , as is often seen pocket openings  are not the  same size and shape because a template was not used in the assembly process.

4. Cushion and feast.
The cushion and feast contains rubber and timber hand rails. These have a direct bearing on the cushion bounce performance. If the cushion and feast are not made properly it reduces the bounce capacity and the bounce away angle, particularly when using side spin technique during the game.
From a manufacturing view point, there is a quick and easy way, and the professional way to make the cushion and feast. To achieve the best performance it has to be done in a professional manner. 

5. Timber and the table.
Pool table timber can be of any type and varied in quality, hardwood is best. Be aware of  the MDF(Multi Density Fibreboard) made material, MDF will absorb  moisture from the air, it can be used in the frame , cushion feast and legs, parts that could become loose and expand with exposure. 

6. Room size requirements (as a general rule of thumb)
For 7ft table, room size require 4.90m x 3.80m,
8 ft table, room size require 5.20m x 4.00m
9ft table, room size require 5.50m x 4.30m

7. Care of your cloth .
The need to maintain cleanliness cannot be over emphasized. A lot of trouble is taken to see that the cloth is free of impurities when supplied and fitted. The cloth is a carefully constructed fabric made on strictly scientific principles, and the care of a cloth is important to maintain its longevity.  Light regular brushing is necessary to remove chalk dust which with other impurities has an abrasive effect on the fibres and can seriously increase the rate of wear.
a. Never use vacuum to suck and clean table.
b. Only use a  brush , do not “scrub” , or brush against the nap.
c. You can iron cloth ;  to iron cloth bed , make sure to follow direction of nap.

An   overheated iron has a directly injurious effect on the fibre cells which are the very life of the cloth.

d. Never throw a ball on to the table with a fairly sharp concussion; it should be placed gently into position, as it can cause bruising of the cloth fibre cells , lessening their efficiency and usefulness .

e. Do not use chipped or worn balls.

f. Keep tables covered when not in use. This helps to keep the cloth clean and preserves the brightness of the colour.

8. Table levelling:
Australian pool tables should have leveling adjusting feet on each of the  legs, to enable you to level  the table.
a. Set spirit level in the  middle of the table between the two centre  pockets,  check and adjust the lowest end,  to make the legs level , then repeat at other opposite end of table.
b.Set spirit level at one end of table between corner pockets ,check and level  end legs, repeat at other end of table.
c. Repeating procedure a. check level once more between centre of table to each of corner pockets, adjust feet accordingly if required.
d.Use a ball to  test  the level of table by hitting ball straight down centre to other end  make sure  not to hit  ball with side spin. Repeat for left and the right of centre of the baulk line.
e.Use ball test again by  hitting  from centre of table to each pocket with a light touch shot.
f.Micro adjust the feet where necessary.

(B)American pool table:

American pool is very popular in the USA: North America, also in Europe and Asian regions. Typically American Pool is played on tables which are 8ft,or9 Ft.
 The slate is 1 inch (25mm)  in thickness, and made in  3 pieces butted together.
American tables have bigger pocket openings cut straight at 45 degrees leading into the back of the pocket opening (Australian pool tables have a rounded cushion that leads into the back of the pocket)
The cloth used on American pool tables is without a nap, and referred to as a napless cloth, it offers no resistance to the balls, so plays faster.

The rubber used in the cushions is triangular in shape and the profile is set higher above the surface of the table as 2 ¼ inch balls are used to play the games of pool using 15 coloured and numbered balls, or 9 balls and/or 10 balls .
Due to the balls being larger in size, the tips on the cues  have a diameter of  between 11mm and 13mm plus, as the point of contact when hitting the ball is also larger and the balls are also much heavier, even so, potting balls is easier because the pocket openings are bigger. it makes for  great fun .

What to look for when buying an American Pool Table:

1. No Australian company produces  American pool tables, all tables are imported from the  UK, USA,  or China.

2. Brand.
a) Riley -  Is a recognized brand  around the world,  an established manufacturer in  the UK, with  60 distributors globally. Riley is the world’s largest manufacturer ,  with  120 years history and manufacturing experience making the finest  of cue sports tables.

The Riley tables are regarded as worlds finest , many  of the world championship titles  are played  and competed on them.

b) BCN – This is a product of  China, newly introduced to the American pool table industry. In recent times BCN has produced  the OEM for the American  market and has been recognized  and acknowledged  for its technical expertise and quality control, meeting world standards . In the last 7 years, BCN American pool tables have been the official tournament table for  9 ball and 10 ball world championship.

c) Olhausen - This is a home brand in the USA it is a quality product  and widely recognized,   mostly in the  USA market.

d) Brunswick- This is a USA brand, also famously known in the global market and has been the official table on several occasions for the 9 ball world championships.

e) Mosconi- This  brand  known widely in  the USA .

(C) Snooker Table:

The game of snooker  is the most popular professional cue sports game, this game requires greater skill for cue ball control and strategic table ball  positioning. The game’s official governing bodies are the WPBSA ( World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association) and the  IBSF ( International Billiards and Snooker Federation).

Snooker table is 12ft and 10 ft in size,

Snooker tables have  two types of  cushion,  the traditional timber cushion and steel block back cushion. The traditional timber cushion still applies to home use snooker tables, however, in the professional arena the preferred choice is  steel block back cushions,  as it gives more accurate  and even rebound on  each section of the cushion, also more accurate cue ball side spin performance.

Snooker tables have a  5 piece slate,  its thickness is between 38mm (1 ½ “) - 50 mm (2’) weighing  approximately 740 kg’s.
There is an enormous challenge in the installation of a snooker table , as a snooker table has a very large play field with 5 piece slate butted  together to form a combined area of 12 ft x 6 ft( 3.66 m x 1.83m), the leveling and assembly  work needs to  be precise and only an  experienced and qualified tradesman can do it properly and to the correct standards. If the installation work is not carried out properly in the first instance, it  becomes a very costly exercise to do the leveling work again.

The snooker table is clothed using English made Strachan 6811 cloth, 30- 32 OZ cloth is used to cover the bed (playfield) ,30 OZ is used to cover the cushion strips  for world championship  titles or world ranking events, the bed cloth is  No.10 Strachan 6811, this cloth is double shaved  making the nap shorter and thinner than other cloths, as a result the speed on this cloth is faster than others.

(1) Riley: The Riley  brand snooker tables are the  world most famous , made in the UK, and  are  used in  many world championship and world ranking events.
Riley tables have a  respected reputation, a 120 years of history, long standing  heritage which offers craftsmanship work  to  professional players and clubs alike  globally.

(2) Star- For the last 10 years the Star brand snooker tables have been made in China. Due to the  popularity of the game of  snooker it has spread  far and wide into  the Asian and China  markets becoming one of the fastest growing sports, however even with this  growing interest  in these  regions with the game of snooker , there are  few Chinese manufacturers who have  became  major producers, apart from Star who have had their  
 snooker table accepted and approved by the  WPBSA  nominating it as their official table in last few years for tournament play.


Knowledge Fundamentals : Foosball Soccer Table

The Soccer table, also referred to as “foosball”, is the game taken from the soccer pitch  transferred  to table games. Soccer tables are made in two types and styles, the tournament style and home use style.
All tournament soccer tables are made 5FT in length.
With rods, there is the traditional solid or tubular steel rods and there is telescope rods as well.
Tournament tables have a single goalie at each of end and cheap mass produced tables have 3 goalies at each end of table. Unlike other kinds of table games, the soccer table is a piece of equipment made to be given a work out due to the nature of the game and how it is played.
To ensure that the table has longevity for your home or business, the focus should be on the quality of table rather than price.

Typical good quality tables have follow elements:


1. Strong rod, this can be either solid rod, or 3mm thickness tubular rod.
Has one goalie at each end.
2. The have raised triangle shape corners made either in metal plate or plastic.
3. Solid built players.
4. The side wall at least 30mm in thickness,
5. The best quality table side wall should be built from plywood, this type of side wall can    take  heavy usage.
6. Strongly attachment legs.
7. Bearing system for the rods to pull through.
8. Toughened glass play field, this ensures easy cleaning of surface.

There are many manufacturers in the market, however historically and from feed back based on reputation of product, branded products always win out, giving peace of mind to the customer.

Brand list:
Roberto ( Italy) , Riley ( UK), Sportivo ( Australia), Galando ( Italy), Bossini ( France) Tornado(USA),  


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