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You have been playing pool at your local bar, and now you wish to purchase a pool table for your home. Or, perhaps you simply want to upgrade and get a new slate pool table to enjoy your time at home. Pricing is usually a big challenge, and you must be alert on pool table prices and factors to watch out.
So, how much will it cost you to acquire a slate pool table? On average, it will cost you around $1800-$3000 to purchase a new slate table. However, there are other factors such as transport and assembly, which will factor in the overall cost.
This article will look at the origin of slate pool tables, factors that affect the pricing and other related questions. Read on for deeper insight.
A Brief History of Slate Pool Tables
The first slate table came into existence around 1826. This was an invention of John Thurston. Frustrated by the wooden pool tables ended up warping thus making the game inconsistent, John went on a mission to find a suitable material.
He wanted something relatively cheap, easy to find, and one that could not warp. That is how slate won this position, having met all these criteria. To date, slate is still the material used to make the high-quality superior tables.
What Is Slate?
Ideally, slate is a solid rock composed of several fine grain mineral components such as clay, quartz, and Mica. It is ideal for making pool tables due to its ability to split into wide level pieces. Additionally, it is easily crushed and polished to produce a perfect flat surface.
Advantages of Slate Bed Table
Better Gameplay- with a slate pool table, you are assured of a flat surface, which facilitates better ball control, and straight shots. This is why most pool tournaments use slate bed tables. Even for an amateur, your game is bound to improve.
No warping-slate is not like wood. It will not warp. It is not affected by temperature. Drink spills don’t affect it. Unless you hit it hard on purpose, your slate will last you a lifetime. You only have to take good care of it. Occasionally you may need to replace or clean the cloth, but not the slate.
Disadvantages of Slate Bed Tables
Weight-slate is usually heavy, and a strong frame is needed to hold it. The whole pool set up will be heavy. This is disadvantageous for someone who needs something foldable or portable. However, for those that want a permanent table, then weight here will not be much of an issue.
Cost-Slate is a natural material that is a bit costly to get and shape, unlike wood. This will definitely reflect on the buying price. Definitely, a slate pool table is going to cost you more to buy and even transport.
What Determines the Price of a Pool Table?
As we have already seen, slate pool tables are quite costly. But, what determines this cost? Below are some of the factors that contribute to the cost of a pool table.
- Construction Material
For any pool table, the surface underneath the felt is made of either slate or MDF. This simple variable means a lot because one could be more than 3 times the other one in terms of cost. MDF, which is a wood product, is readily available and cheaper. Thus, MDF table would be cheaper compared to the slate one.
For a high-quality table, you have to pay more. We have already seen that slate does not warp, and it’s not susceptible to changes in temperature. MDF/wood is prone to warping. Now you can understand when you have to pay more for a slate bed table.
The size of the table will determine the prize. Bigger tables are expensive than smaller tables. This makes sense because you need more materials to make a big pool table. Consequently, if its big, its definitely going to be heavier, hence more shipping fees. Price increase in relation to size always applies for both slate and MDF.
Most of the time, if you buy a big brand, you are most likely going to spend more. Most of these respected brands are known for producing high-quality products as well as excellent customer service. Nevertheless, you do not have to worry about the expensive prices as long as you are purchasing quality long-lasting products.
The normal bar style tables are just basic with four legs and six pockets. With a smooth playing surface, they actually serve their purpose. However, they do not have as much style and character, and this reflects in their cost.
On the other hand, we have tables that are aesthetically pleasing and rich in design. However, there is catch; you are going to dig deeper into your wallet.
Apart from the factors mentioned above, we have other unforeseen costs, all of which add up to the overall cost these include:
- Moving and assembly
- Essential gears such as cues, balls, racking triangles, chalk, cue rack, table cover, and cleaning supplies
However, the above will depend whether you are buying a new table or a used one.
A new slate table will come with most of these items, and the moving and assembly fee will be included in the initial overall cost.
However, for a used table, you may have some missing accessories, thus the need to buy them separately.
See Also: 5 Best Non Slate Pool Tables
Are slate pool tables better?
Slate tables are generally expensive and heavy. However, slate is long-lasting, does not warp, and the playing surface is always smooth and level. Thus, slate tables are superior compared to their MDF counterparts.
How can you identify a slate pool table?
You can easily tell if a pool table is made of slate without dismantling it by checking underneath. A slate table should be grey, and the touch should feel like a stone. Additionally, slate tables are heavy, and cannot easily be moved.
What is the difference between a slate pool table and MDF table?
The difference between these two tables lies in the material used to make the playing surface, that the surface covered by the cloth or felt. The slate bed table is made of slate, a natural solid rock that is ground and polished. The MDF one is made of a wood product. The slate one is smooth and level, and it does not warp like the MDF one.