Most of you might have seen on television pool table players jumping on the table. After playing the winning shot, players stand up on the table in celebration.
You might be wondering: “Can I stand on my pool table at home?”
And the answer to the question is NO.
Why You Should Not Stand On a Pool Table
Commercial pool tables are expensive. Additionally, the slate beds of these tournament tables have more support as compared to residential pool tables.
Commercial tables have a full wood backing support of at least 3/4-inch for the slate. Additionally, the slate itself is about an inch thick, which is required by the World Pool-Billiard Association (WPA) for professional tables.
Moreover, most professional pool organizers generally replace the table or the felt at the end of each competition.
On the contrary, residential pool tables are more fragile as compared to the commercial ones. Therefore, do not make the mistake of standing on the table.
The pool table can break if subjected to force. Moreover, the cloth of the tool table could get spoiled or damaged.
To understand why a residential pool table can break when someone stands on it, let’s learn about the structure of the table.
Understanding the Structure of a Pool Table
Pool tables available in the market are of two types. These include medium-density fiberboards (MDF), which are also known as wooden pool tables, and slate bed tables.
MDF tables are cheaper and more delicate as compared to slate bed tables. Also known as wood bed tables, the quality of the table is similar to a plastic folding table. You will more likely break the table if you stand on it.
Slate bed style is the more common type of pool table. The table has been in existence since 1835 and is available at different prices and sizes.
Also read: How to Tell If Pool Table Is Slate?
Residential pool tables have a single slate of 3/4-inch thickness. In contrast, commercial tables usually have three slate pieces with a thickness of more than 19 mm.
Due to the lack of potential support of the slate, residential tables cannot support heavyweight.
Slate is a solid but brittle material. It is a fine-grained rock type that is created by the changes in mudstone. The material is created after compressing mudstone and shale in a sedimentary basin at moderate heat.
The clay minerals in the mudstone and shale are changed due to the horizontal forces acting on them. A vertical foliation develops due to the compressive forces that generally cross the bedding planes in the shale.
The slate obtained through the natural process is milled and planed down in manufacturing centers to create pool table beds.
Pool tables made of slate don’t have enough lumbar support. As a result, the table can crack or you could fall through injuring yourself.
Standing on a slate pool table is similar to walking on tiles. Tiles are supported only on the sides. The case is similar with most residential pool tables.
Slate is a fragile material, unlike steel or wood. You should always handle the material with great care.
Can You Sit On a Pool/Billiard Table?
You can sit at the edge of the table without damaging the pool. But sitting at the center of the table will damage the pool similar to standing on the table.
The weight is concentrated on the legs when sitting at the edge of the pool table. As a result, the pool table is more likely to bear an individual’s weight.
The table won’t break if you lean on it. The leveling could get disturbed due to sitting at the edge of the table. But this will likely happen over time instead of immediately.
Nevertheless, it is recommended that you not sit at the edge of the pool table. The reason is that the table felt could get damaged due to friction with part of the cloth. The felt can get scratched due to the rivet of the jeans scraping the table’s surface.
Sitting at the center of the table is not recommended at all. It can cause injury or seriously damage the pool table. The result of sitting at the table’s center is similar to standing on the table.
What If You Have to Stand on a Table?
Sometimes, it may be necessary to stand on the table. For example, when you have to fix the light above the table. Standing on the table may seem the only choice as it is difficult to move it due to its weight.
In this situation, you should cover the table surface and the rails using a thick blanket. Cover the blanket with a plastic sheet to avoid damaging the blanket.
Next, cut a 3/4-inch sheet of plywood and place it on the bed. The plywood doesn’t have to cover the entire table. Just make sure that it covers the center of the table.
Placing the plywood on the pool table will disperse the weight when you stand on it. This will prevent the slate from breaking under too much weight.
To get on the table, do not jump up from the ground. This is important as it could break the slate. Use a chair or ladder to get up on the table slowly.
You should also make steady movements when you get up on the table. Carefully slide your feet around the table to avoid too much force on the leg.
After completing the task, slowly get down. Always have someone with you in the room when performing a task that requires you to stand on the table.
What If the Slate Gets Damaged When You Stand on It?
If the slate gets damaged when you stand on it, you can repair it yourself. Using beeswax or a special pool table wax will fix the slate if it has chipped or cracked.
Apply the wax to the damaged area on the slate after heating the wax. Wait for the wax to dry and scrape off any excess wax using a paint scraper to make it smooth.
To repair a broken slate, you need to use slate repair glue. Scrape and sand the slate after the glue becomes dry to make it smooth.
An easier option when a slate is broken is to call a professional. Many stores that sell pool tables also offer repair services.
You should call them up if the slate is cracked, chipped, or broken. There is no known duration for how long a DIY repair will last. A professional pool repair person can do a more permanent job.
Residential pool tables are not structurally sound. They cannot support the weight of a human. Even if your pool table looks structurally sound, you should not stand on it.
Sitting or standing on the pool table is also not recommended since it can damage the table felt. Replacing the felt is not only expensive but also difficult.
Unless you have purchased a professional-grade pool table, your table could get damaged if you stand on it. The slate support in most residential pool tables is weak. You can damage the table and injure yourself by standing on it.
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