I'm Paul from Lyminge, Kent. I'm in the process of looking to buy a table and am after some sound advice. I'm hoping to pick the brains of those more experienced than I - aside from ensuring the table has legs and the right number of holes, what are the potential pitfalls of buying a table? What should I be looking for? What kinds of questions should I ask the seller? How many of you would compromise on getting a slim Sam's to save space?
Any help you can offer would be greatly appreciated.
Now that you are a member you will find that you have access to "Club Class Lounge". Within this there is a sub-board called "Tables Buying And Selling". Have a look at this, particularly the top half-dozen threads, and you will see that for 18 months now we have tracked every single bar billiards table offered on eBay and given our own assessment thereof.
This is more often or not a passing comment by me, and every now and again there's an 'interesting' case where Sav will give a more detailed and instructive view.
As a rule of thumb, these are the average prices you can expect to pay for one of the main table types in average to good condition: Riley.....£400-£500 SAMS.....£500-£600 Jelkes....£600-£800.
You will not save that much space in a room by going for a "Narrow SAMS" - they are a mere 2 inches narrower, and to compensate are longer anyway ! But it boils down to which version of the game you want to play: the narrow versions were designed to play the (rarer) 4-Pin version of the game.
There are of course other versions of tables other than the three makes mentioned above, the modern "Supreme" being one, which has an element of "Pool table" in its DNA, ;D and which can be purchased new for £1,299 or thereabouts. But unlike the traditional tables these are unlikely to become an 'investment' and are often to be found being offered secondhand for around £600 representing a 50% depreciation.
Thanks, Tommo - I've had a look at those threads (some funny stuff in there too, which made me laugh, especially regarding some Ebay seller's other items ;D). I wouldn't know if a table had the right legs/wrong feet though, and wondered if anyone with the knowledge has the patience to put together a "Guide to buying" thread?
Grateful also to Sav, who has helped point me in the right direction ;)
Good evening, I also am looking to buy a secondhand table - (I need the practice!), preferrably a Tarratt as that is the only table that seems to be played here in West Sussex. I've seen a Riley table advertised, but I think the 50 holes are in different positions. Can anybody confirm that this is the case please.
Now that you have taken out a membership you will find that you have access to "Club Class Lounge". Here we have a continuous thread going called "Tables Buying And Selling" in which we rate all tables that come to our attention via eBay.
You are right that there is a Riley being auctioned at the moment, and it has a red cloth. The only other one on eBay at present is a modern design (Supreme) table.
If as you say you live in West Sussex and want to brush up on your skills, then yes a "Tarratt" would be best, Tarratts of course being the table operator who deal in "SAMS" make of table. Take care that you don't bid for a "Narrow SAMS" though, as these were designed to play a completely different version of the game on - "4 Pin". On these the width is only 2 inches narrower (outer dimension 34" rather than 36") but it doesn't half make a difference !
But a Jelkes or Riley would be equally suitable for home use, although as you say on the Rileys the 50 pockets are situated slightly further away from the side cushion and are the type favoured in the Channel Islands.
Hi and Welcome, Rileys are OK though more flimsily built than a Tarratt Sams table. The cushions are a touch more recessed on Rileys and Burroughs and Watts but very little different to a normal Sams (beware the narrow Sams version with 28" wide playing surface).
If you are looking at the burgundy coloured Riley currently on Ebay then my advice is don't touch it. Looking closely at it, the holes just do not look correctly positioned to me the fifties are too far up (like a narrow Sams) and more noticeably the top holes look too close to the top cushion. There does not appear room for a ball to pass behind them as one should.
It just does not appear right, others may comment.
Hope this helps,
Inventor of the Triangles version of Bar Billiards.
Highest England away aggregate 2013, highest England away aggregate 2014, seventh reserve 2015.