The Union Billiards Pool Table Buyer’s Guide

Everything you need to know about buying a Pool table

The Union Billiards Pool Table Buyer’s Guide covers everything you need to know about buying a Pool table. If you’re looking for quick answers, you can jump to the relevant section using the links to the left/below… Otherwise, find a comfy chair, relax and let’s talk Pool.


A Pool table is an excellent addition to any room.

It will be the central point of your games area at home, offering hours of entertainment for your family, friends, and visitors.

At work, it’s a wonderful diversion in the break room, where employees and co-workers may unwind with a lunchtime game or compete in the workplace tournament. And at your venue, it will generate additional revenue, keep your customers entertained, and raise the profile of your company.

However, with so many models, styles, and sizes to choose from, it can be tough to choose. We’ll go through all the variables and choices, measurements and possibilities with you so you can make the best decision possible.

The Thurstons Flare Dining Pool Table Black

A Pool Table for Home


If you have the space, a Pool table may be an excellent centrepiece in your house. You’ll like having the freedom to practice whenever you want. Simply get a bite to eat and continue to rack up those balls when you come home from work. Casual gamers and social butterflies may enjoy treating visitors with a few drinks and friendly competition.

MDF Pool tables are a good place to start when looking for the perfect home Pool table. They are good looking, well-made, and provide a gaming experience comparable to more costly Hardwood tables. Some MDF tables conserve room by transforming to a dining table or merging Pool and table tennis into a multi-game table. They are ideal for families and children, but they may also be used in shared accommodation or communal spaces.

Naturally, if you have a larger budget, you will appreciate a Hardwood Pool table’s classic look and longevity above an MDF one. You may have it sprayed in any colour you like, or you can have a natural wood finish utilizing oils and stains.

A sharpened, flattened piece of rock slate sits beneath the Pool speed or nap fabric, providing a true competition feel. Slate is the finest and only playing surface you need if you are a serious player, possibly on a league team or preparing for a tournament.

Crown Dining Pool Table

Whats the Difference between Pool and Snooker?


Pool and Snooker may appear to be quite similar, but they differ in terms of the number of balls, pockets, table size, cue stick size, and a variety of other factors. Some people mix up the term’s pool and snooker. However, this isn’t entirely inaccurate. Here’s a quick breakdown of the differences between Pool, and Snooker.

Classic Third Size Snooker Table


Snooker is a game played on a six-pocket table. Snooker tables are larger than pool tables, although their pockets are the same or slightly smaller.

Snooker is a game made up of 15 red numberless balls, 6 colored object balls, and 1 cue ball. The game is played on a point system, with each color earning a different number of points. The player with the highest score wins the game.

hurrican home pool table for home


Pool is played on a table with 6 pockets, 15 object balls, and an extra cue ball (white ball).

Pool Tables are Good Business

Coin-operated Pool tables have long been a staple in hotels, sports clubs, membership clubs, restaurants, and shopping malls.

Pool tables would be a huge hit with your regulars, especially if you create a friendly or serious league. People will love Instagramming their winning shots, which will provide you free publicity, and you’ll have a lot of returning visitors who will spend longer time in your venue (spending more money on beverages or food).

Hurricane Coin Operated Pool Table

Take a Break From Work

A Pool table is an excellent addition to your office’s break room. It will keep your staff amused and motivated, and it also serves as a wonderful social centrepiece during lunch breaks.

A break room, also known as a chillout zone, is a space where employees may unwind for an hour by playing a game of pool, resting, recharging and grabbing a meal. Productivity is critical in today’s workplace. Employee satisfaction, optimism, and happiness have all been linked to higher productivity.

It’s also a wonderful spot for more casual meetings, whether with employees or guests. Some meetings are more productive when held in an informal setting in a comfortable setting, and a break room is an excellent choice for this.

work pool tables

What’s the Difference Between
Slate Bed & Chipboard Bed Tables?

All Union Billiards Pool and Snooker tables come with a rock slate.

The bed of a Pool table forms the playing field. It is cloth-covered and provides a level, consistent playing surface. Slate beds, which are made of real rock slate, offer the best performance and gaming experience. The slate is mined before it is cut to size and painstakingly polished to ensure it is perfectly flat.

On larger tables, such as Championship Snooker tables, sectional slate beds are utilized. This is a bed that is made up of four or five parts that are expertly assembled during installation. Smaller tables, such as club and home 7ft Pool tables, are made from a single piece of slate, making them easier to transport and install.

Chipboard bed Pool tables are commonly sold by retail stores. They are intended for individuals who require a temporary starter table. The Pool table’s game experience and lifespan aren’t quite as good as that of a slate bed table, but the benefits include light weight and low cost.

Thurstons Diamond Pool Table

How Much Space Will I Need?


Pool tables require access from all angles for cueing room.

At 7ft in length Pool table (the most common size in South Africa), needs approximately a 4 x 5 meter room to play comfortably.

A 12ft in length Snooker table, needs approximately a 7 x 5 meter room to play comfortably.

Aristocrat Dining Pool Table

What Style Pool Table Should I Choose?

Union Billiards slate bed Pool tables come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Aside from the differences between Pool and Snooker tables, you should choose based on your preferences and how well it will fit with your décor. Some of the most popular styles are as follows:

Thurstons Diamond Pool Table


Union Billiards modern Pool tables are intended to fit into a home, mancave and office chill zone environment. Many folks choose them because they have the solidity of a club table but with a more subtle design and simpler shape- All come with a ball return system.

Aristocrat Pool Table


Pool dining tables are often contemporary in design, with a relatively shallow body to provide lots of space beneath for chairs and legs.

Fusion Dining Pool Table


Luxury tables are made from the most expensive materials and have the most trendy designs. Make a statement with a Fusion, manufactured in Belgium, or the Tudor Pool table.


Traditional Snooker Tables

Union Billiards has been manufacturing Snooker tables since 1954. Our Traditional Snooker tables are distinguished by elaborate design and natural construction materials. They are frequently adorned with thick turned legs to create an appearance evocative of vintage snooker rooms.

Which Cloth Should I Choose?

Modern Home, Coin-operated and MDF Dining Pool tables come fitted with a standard cloth. The Hardwood Dining, Luxury and Snooker tables come fitted with Hainsworth and Simonis cloth, to be sure of getting the best play experience.

You can upgrade to a higher quality cloth when ordering your table. Bear in mind that an upgrade may only be worthwhile only if you are a professional or tournament player.

You will also be able to select a color. Typically, a modest number of basic colors are included in the purchase, Green, Blue, Red or Black, with a larger selection of ‘premium’ colors offered in the Hainsworth cloth.

The color you pick is totally up to you and the surroundings to which you’re matching your table, however some study suggests that blue cloths strain the eyes the least.

Hainsworth SMART Full Size Snooker Table Cloth

What Other Options to Consider?

Depending on the table you choose, consider how the balls are returned to you.

Most Pool tables built in South Africa include pockets that are linked by an internal ball return mechanism, which returns balls to one end of the table after potting.

On a coin-operated table, the system is divided into two parts: one that returns coloured balls to the ball drawer in preparation for the next coin, and the other that returns white balls to the table’s end in preparation for re-spotting.

Snooker tables come with simple net pockets. These simply fill with balls as they’re potted, ready for recovery at the end of the game.

pool ball return system

What Other Options to Consider?

A Pool table may be used for more than just Pool!

Aramith Premier Snooker Ball Set


Purchasing a set of snooker balls is a common – and inexpensive – addition for a Pool table. Make sure they’re the same size as your regular Pool balls so they’ll fit easily in your pockets and ball return system.

Then, if the mood strikes, you can switch your Pool balls for a fun game of snooker.

Thurstons Diamond Pool Table

Table Tennis Top

A Table-tennis top add-on is available.

This easily sits on top of your Pool table and transforms it into a Table-tennis playfield. It’s a great way to take full advantage of your space.


Every new Pool table comes with all the accessories you need to start playing. This usually includes two cues, a set of balls, a triangle and some chalk. Depending on the table you choose, you might get extra accessories intended to help you enjoy your games and take care of your table.

Delivery and Installation

Most of our tables are made to order and take anywhere from five working days to five weeks dependant on your choice. Be sure to chat to us for more details.

Make sure you have enough room space to accept the table when we deliver. We don’t just mean getting it through the front door; we also mean lugging it through any corridors, over steep curves, or through other challenging locations. If in doubt, submit a few pictures of the route to our sales staff for guidance.

Delivery Van

Time To Buy Your Pool Table

You should now be completely prepared to select the ideal table for you. It’s time to double-check your dimensions and get the best Pool table for your area from our online Pool table store.

And, as usual, if you want more assistance, our sales staff is there to assist you with your selection. Please contact us right away if you have any questions!

Our Range of Pool Tables

Dining Pool Tables

Create a new dimension in Dining Room Entertainment with our stunning range of upmarket and functional pool tables.

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Home & Club Pool Tables

Entertain friends and family at home or equip your entertainment establishment with a hand-crafted pool table from our quality range.

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Coin Operated Pool Tables

Our quality range of Coin Operated Pool Tables are equipped with coin or token slot and security features.

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