A good pool table is an excellent investment for entertaining friends and family at home. Depending on your budget, a solid pool table can last a lifetime with proper care and maintenance. A professional quality pool table commonly uses a slate base to provide the best performance and maximum durability. Unfortunately, a slate pool table can often cost thousands of dollars, which is out of many buyer’s budgets. If you can’t afford to splurge on a slate pool table, a non-slate table may be right up your alley.
Non-slate pool tables are most commonly made of engineered wood or synthetic slate (Slatron) to provide a more affordable alternative to a slate table. While these may not be made for professional play, they perform just fine for a family or friends to play at home. Non-slate pool tables are often lightweight and much easier to move while also being more flexible and easier to assemble or disassemble. We have looked at some of the most popular non-slate pool tables to determine the best model for use in a variety of situations. If you’re currently in the market for a new pool table, take a look at the below non-slate models to see which one works best for you.
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Best Overall - Barrington Springdale 90” Pool Table
Best Compact - GoSports Portable Pool Table
Best Premium - SimbaShopping USA 7-Feet Pool Table
Best Combo Table - Hathaway Games Bristol 7' Pool Table
Strong bounce off bumpers
Heavy-duty felt rolls smoothly
Classic design works in almost any room
Scratch-resistant and durable
Heavy and difficult to move
GoSports Portable Table
Compact and lightweight
Folding pool table offers flexibility
Strong performance for this category of table
Full accessories to start play immediately
SimbaShopping 7’ Pool Table
Quick and easy assembly
Bar-style pool table
Fast play and high performance
Heavy and sturdy
Hathaway Games Combo Table
Ping pong and pool combo
Sturdy and aesthetically pleasing
Highly versatile for the whole family
Compact and adjustable
The pool table at your neighborhood sports bar can provide hours of entertainment, however, there is something about a classic billiard table that lends an air of class and sophistication to any home. For those in search of a billiard/pool table that oozes style, the Barrington Springdale pool table simply ticks all the boxes. This 90-inch pool table combines classic good looks with elements of modernity making it a pleasure to both look at and play on. The wood grain laminate is of exceptional quality and is highly resistant to scratches, making it perfect for home use, even when small kids are around.
The ornate, classic claw design of the legs will fit perfectly into the decor style of any home. However, those legs are ultra-durable because the wood-look laminate with its ornate styling is molding covering metal legs. The leather-lined and textured pockets only add to those classic goods looks. Those pockets are also deep enough to house several balls – so that play can continue uninterrupted. The playing surface is a nod to modernity. It is manufactured using a blend of tricot and polyester. This gives the appearance of the old-fashioned felt but is far heavier wearing. The bumper guards are also of professional quality.
The extra accessories that come with the table mean that you can start enjoying your first game as soon as the table is assembled. The accessories consist of a full set of billiard balls that meet international standards, two high-quality cues, two chalk cubes, a triangle rack, and a brush to ensure that your billiard table surface remains in excellent condition.
If you want to enjoy a classic, high-quality billiard/pool table the Barrington Springdale is a strong option for anyone. But be aware that calling in professionals to help with assembly is highly recommended. This table and its components are not lightweight.
|89” x 50” x 31”
|K-818 Bumper Guards
The GoSports portable pool table comes in sizes of six and seven feet. It’s a midsized billiards table great for competitive games yet small enough to store in compact spaces. The fully assembled dimensions of the product are 84″ L x 47″ W x 31″ H. You can easily set up the table since it is ready to play once you take it out of the box. You only need to fold the legs out and let the game begin. The GoSports portable pool table is ideal for apartments, game rooms, offices, and for any individual who doesn’t like to deal with a full-size billiards table.
The GoSports portable billiards table comes with sixteen regulation balls, a ball rack, two 57″ cue sticks (lightweight), a felt table brush, and two chalks. The premium construction includes a heavy-duty steel frame to allow the table to remain sturdy without movement when playing the game. The high-quality felt surface ensures smooth play. A bonus felt brush is included to always keep the playing surface clean.
You can easily keep the table stored away until play and set it up quickly to entertain your guests. The table is quite easy to disassemble and store after play. You can choose from three different colors: red, black, and blue – with each table is available in both six and seven feet sizes. You can easily use this table under a covered patio since it is designed to be extremely durable. But make sure to safely store the billiards table indoors when not in use to protect the velvet surface and other parts of the table from moisture. The product is supremely portable and easy to move around. Some customers have complained of receiving damaged products. Make sure to inspect the table once you receive it.
|84” x 47” x 31” (7 ft. model)
|Blue, Black, or Red
The Red Devil 7’ pool table from SimbaShopping USA is a premium quality model with numerous features and accessories for you and your guests to enjoy a fun game of pool. The table has a sleek look with a dark brown wood frame and a red cloth that covers the playing surface. It also has chrome inserts on the four extreme corners to add a touch of style to your game room. The base of the table is made of medium-density fiberboard and includes sturdy leg levers on each corner to allow the player to adjust the playing area to be perfectly leveled.
The automatic ball return system on the short side of the table helps keep all the balls in one area for easy racking whenever you are ready to play the game. The chrome edging provides the necessary durability to this area. The product comes with a ton of great accessories for you to enjoy a great game of pool with your family and friends. The accessories include fifteen red balls, fifteen numbered balls, six colored balls, four stick cues, two cue balls, two rest cues, two chalks, two black triangles, a table brush, a scoreboard, as well as a handy cover to protect the table between games.
The professional 7-feet Red Devil has a 74.75″-L X 36.75″-W playfield. The size of the pool table is 84″-L X 48″-W X 31.50″-H. It is quick and easy to assemble this pool table, and you can opt for other colors including Green Season and Blue Sea if you want a different color. This product is more expensive and much heavier than many other non-slate pool tables. The high-quality construction, durability, sturdiness, and superb performance, make this one of the best non-slate pool tables currently available.
|84” x 48” x 31”
If you have been looking for a quality combo pool table without having to spend an arm and a leg, the Hathaway Games Bristol 7-feet pool table is an excellent option. It is great for your family and friends to have fun all day long. The Bristol 7-feet pool table from Hathaway Games comes with a combination of many quality features to fit any type of space including compact rooms. It is a stylish addition to any game room thanks to the table’s melamine cabinet finish (dark cherry) & the chrome-plated corner caps.
The pool table consists of EVA rubber cushions and plastic molded black drop pockets to guarantee a fast and accurate ball rebound. The product also includes a quick change-over table tennis top so that your entire family can have hours of fun within the same space. You get all the accessories required to play both pool and table tennis with the Hathaway Games Bristol 7′ Pool Table.
The product is quite durable with its thick dual poly sealed MDF construction (CARB certified) and high-quality black felt. The pedestal-style leg design enhances the value of the product with independent leg levelers for improved stability. The product comes with two 2-piece 57-inch pool cues, a plastic racking triangle, 2-1/4 inch billiard balls, and felt-matching black cue chalk for playing pool and 2 paddles, posts, net, and 2 table tennis balls for playing table tennis. The table has a dimension of L-84″, W-46″, and H-31″ while the playfield is L-74.75″, W-36.75″, and H-0.75″.
The base material is constructed with stainless steel, plastic, and engineered wood while the frame is constructed with engineered wood. The Hathaway Games Bristol 7′ Pool Table comes with a 180-day limited warranty to ensure peace of mind.
Overall, the Hathaway 7’ combo table has a lot to offer anyone looking for a pool table and ping pong combo. It is constructed with heavy-duty parts and provides superior performance. Firmly in the mid-range, it doesn’t compete with a dedicated pool table made of slate, but as far as a non-slate pool table intended to entertain guests and family, this offers a lot of value for anyone’s game room.
|84” x 46” x 31”
Slate pool tables are industry standard because the hard blue-black stone can be ground down to a tolerance of 0.0001 mm. This provides a precision surface that allows minimal interference in the physics of the game. But not everyone needs or even wants a pool table made with the finest slate from the Ligurian region of Italy. For most of us amateur to intermediate pool sharks, non-slate pool tables make a suitable and affordable way to enjoy this timeless game. Here is what you should know if you will be in the market for your non-slate pool table. Now let’s address the first question on everyone’s mind.
“If not slate, then what?”
There was a time when pool balls were made of ivory, but luckily, we found improved materials for manufacturing pool balls for our elephant friends. Slate tables have also been replaced with some other materials suitable to the physics of the pool.
Honeycomb plastic boards are a single smooth surface consisting of various layers of honeycomb polypropylene. This provides a structurally solid surface that maintains its form even if impacted — although you don’t want to impact it at all to improve longevity.
This is a good option for beginners to use while learning how to take care of a pool table. The whole thing will cost about $1000 and last for a few years depending on the use it receives. After which, many manufacturers can send a replacement honeycomb — although the replacement itself will be a considerable ordeal.
There is another common alternative to slate, slatron, or permaslate. Basically, this is a plank of compressed particle board treated and layered within a plastic surfacing. This makes it especially resistant to shocks and pressure and provides that realistic feel to pool play that everyone is looking for. You may have played on a slatron pool table and thought it was a real deal slate.
Of course, this is only at first and as long as it is cared for and treated with love and respect. Because it is based on particleboard, slatron tables will react to humidity in the air, moisture, and even temperatures. If your slate table is not maintained in perfect climates, it will deteriorate soon. But even though their quality is nothing near that of real slate, neither is their price. You can expect to get a top-of-the-line slatron table for a little over $1000.
MFD is used extensively in flooring, shelves, kitchen cabinets, and many other applications where the values of strength, durability, consistency, and affordability are most needed. Non-slate pool tables take full advantage of these values to provide a considerably high-performance pool table that could be the next best thing but not quite slate.
The biggest advantage is the affordability, but you will find MDF pool tables in a variety of price ranges. For best results, look for a reputable manufacturer of top-quality products, and don’t be afraid to shell out a little more on top-quality items. Longevity is what you will be buying if you can take good care of it.
Q: How can I take care of my non-slate pool table and get the longest service life?
A: The best way to ensure you get the most top-quality playing time on a pool table with a realistic feel and uninterrupted physics is by treating your non-slate pool table with respect. This is simple enough. Even though these tables are advertised as being able to support the weight of a full-grown adult, it is best to protect non-slate pool tables from all unnecessary pressure and impacts. This is because materials of lesser quality than actual slate can’t be expected to react with any degree of consistency and the surface could be damaged and need replacements.
Q: Should I get the two-piece or one-piece table?
A: The right table for you is the one that provides the best enjoyment and most practice. When choosing the one-piece and two-piece leg arrangement you must consider how you are planning on installing your pool table. It will also be important to consider the quality of the product. A top-quality two-piece will have the stability of a medium-quality one-piece. Again, protect the stability of the legs and avoid roughhousing on the pool table.
Q: What accessories will I need?
A: It is very important to know where you will be getting all the accessories and parts to play a proper game of pool needed. If you are buying new, you can probably take advantage of a full set of gameplay parts and paraphernalia. If not, you can find a handy list of the complete set of pool table game gear right here.