Purchasing a pool table can be exciting if you’re a cue sports enthusiast.
These pool tables are usually made of fine material that will last you for years to come with the right maintenance. Many pool table owners prefer to keep their tables for as long as possible.
If you’re getting a pool table for your home, you may not have enough room to get a separate snooker table.
But wouldn’t it be nice if you could snooker on a pool table. That’ll save you space and money spent in buying a snooker table.
To better answer this question of whether you can play snooker on a pool table (which you can), let’s quickly understand the similarities between the two games.
What are the similarities and differences between snooker and pool?
The terms “snooker” and “pool” are often used interchangeably when referring to one of these cue sports. After all, both games feature similar looking tables with cues and colored balls.
These cue sports may appear to be the same at first glance, but they do possess the following differences:
Pool tables are smaller in size compared to snooker tables. These tables have a shorter length and width compared to snooker tables, but they are taller and feature larger pockets.
Pool tables vary in size and come in 7 foot, 8 foot, 9-foot length varieties.
Snooker table sizes are more standardized and are usually 10 feet by 5 feet in the US. However, European snooker tables are larger at 12 feet by 6 feet.
All these tables have a length to width ratio of 2:1.
Snooker cues and pool cues can look identical from far away. However, these sticks feature some key differences.
The width of a pool cue is 12 – 13mm, while the width of a snooker cue is 9 – 10mm. This may create some noticeable differences when using a pool cue to play billiards.
The smaller width of the snooker cue gives more accurate ball control and allows players to be more precise in their shots. This means you will have a harder time using a pool cue to play snooker.
Pool cues are also slightly heavier than snooker cues. They weigh 19-21oz while the latter weighs 18-20oz. This difference may not seem like much, but the weight of a cue determines how much force the ball is hit with.
Both cues are 57-58 inches in length. This means pool cues will have a bit more weight per inch of length compared to snooker cues.
Perhaps the most noticeable difference between pool and snooker lies in the size and appearance of the balls used in each cue sport.
Pool is played with either 10 or 15 red balls, 6 solid-colored balls, and 1 cue ball.
Snooker on the other hand is played with 8 solid-colored balls, 7 striped colored balls, and 1 cue ball.
Can you play snooker on a pool table?
Now that we understand the similarities and differences between the two sports, let go back to our initial question: can you play snooker on a pool table?
The answer is yes. However, you will need to make several adjustments before your pool table can be used to play snooker.
To attempt this process you will need a permanent marker, a pen, and snooker marking stick. It should be noted that while you can play snooker on a pool table, the arrangement isn’t ideal.
Professional or serious snooker players may feel annoyed by the differences in table and pocket sizes and could experience difficulties while adjusting between the two cue sports.
Converting your pool table to a snooker table
It’s possible to convert any cue sports table into a snooker table, but players will have to get used to the smaller size of other tables.
The steps for converting your pool table to a snooker table are as follows.
Draw the right balkline
The first step to follow when converting your pool table to a snooker table is to draw the appropriate balk line for snooker.
You can make these markings using a drawing pen.
Marking the D
This step is perhaps the most important one: marking the D on your table. You will need the help of your snooker marking stick for this.
Start by placing your marking stick on the balkline you have just drawn. One end of your marking stick will be the pivot while the other end will swing around the pivot. Place your pen in the pivot end and hold it in place.
Then place the tip of your permanent marker through one of the holes in the “swinging” end of the marking stick. Each of these holes will correspond to a different table length, so pick the one that matches the length of your pool table.
You should then swing the marking stick about the pivot point while drawing an arc with your marker. Make sure you keep the pivot point firmly in place or you may end up with an irregular arc.
Get the appropriate snooker balls
Snooker is generally played with large balls that are larger in number compared to pool balls.
If you wish to play snooker on a pool table, you will need to get smaller variants of snooker balls. The standard snooker ball is 2 ⅙ inches in size, while pool balls are around 2 inches in size.
You will need to visit a cue sports supplier to find snooker balls that are 2 inches in size. Once you acquire these, you should be ready to play your first game of snooker on your pool table.
Is it harder to play snooker on a pool table?
It’s difficult to say whether it’s harder to play snooker on a pool table versus the opposite.
Snooker is played with more balls than pool, so having all these extra balls on the noticeably smaller table can make the game more challenging.
However, pool tables also feature larger pockets than snooker tables. This can make the game easier for some people.
Should I convert my pool table or purchase a snooker table?
Playing snooker on a pool table isn’t ideal. If you are a huge snooker enthusiast or a professional player, you won’t be satisfied with playing snooker on a pool table.
If you get used to playing snooker on this smaller table, you may have difficulty playing on standard size snooker tables in competitions. In this case, you would be better off replacing your pool table at home with a snooker table.
However, some people may not possess enough room in homes to fit a full-sized snooker table.
If space is an issue, you may not have any options other than to convert a pool table to a snooker table or purchase an undersized kids’ snooker table.
Can I convert a snooker table to a pool table?
It’s possible to convert a snooker table to a pool table.
You will need to follow a procedure similar to the one outlined above.
However, you will need to purchase pool balls that are larger than the standard size as you will be playing on a larger-than-average table.
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