: Liz Ford
Rack Your Own - 10 Tips for the Perfect Home Pool Room
The holy grail for the obsessive, opinionated pool player - a table to call your own. I don't possess one yet, but that doesn't mean I haven't figured out every last neurotic detail of my future game room. If you're one of the lucky jerks with the space and budget for playing at home, let me enlighten you with the specs for the home room of my dreams. I hate you, by the way.
1. If you don't have the space, don't get the table.
The minimum for a 4' by 9' table is 14' by 19' - roughly 5 feet of clearance on each side of the table. There's no shame in opting for a smaller table if you're a little shy of the mark, better that than using the Maestro's baton (getting through this article without making a Seinfeld reference would be impossible.) Make sure the room is free of obstructing posts and has at least an 8' ceiling.
2. Get the basics right.
It's all about the game, so put most of your energy into scoring high quality equipment - the table, pool cues, balls, felt and chalk. Inquire at your local poolroom for a good table mechanic and be sure to include fees for reclothing and leveling the table into your budget.
3. Park it in style.
Go with classic poolroom chairs - high enough to observe the layout of the table and comfortable enough to sit in while your opponent runs 100 balls. Built in cue and drink holders, natch.
4. Don't go blind.
Nothing's worse for your enjoyment of the game than staring straight into the noonday sun. Personally, I wouldn't stop short of complete black-out blinds, but at the very least you'll want to invest in some curtains to keep the glare out of your eyes.
5. Light the way.
Now that you've blocked out the sun, you're going to need to supply your own light - hopefully one that hangs over the table. Hang it too low and you'll bump your head while you're playing, too high and you'll be forced to stare into bare bulbs every time you come to the table.
6. Control your environment.
In order to keep you, and your table, playing consistently you're going to need a room with insulation to protect you from nature's various moods If your table is in the basement, invest in a good dehumidifier to keep things dry.
7. Does the carpet match the felt?
Hardwood floors are chic but carpet is easier on your lower back and on any equipment that you might happen to drop (or throw angrily.)
Duh. A wall-mounted bottle opener is also a nice touch.
9. Accessorize and decorate!
Go ahead, do it up. Cue holders, score keeping beads, table cover, half-naked chick leaning on pool table poster. The works. It's okay to decorate tastefully with your trophies and personal pictures, but please try not to take yourself too seriously.
10. Music's a must, TV's a bust.
I'd opt for a kick ass stereo system over a 60'' TV any day. If your man or lady cave really needs a TV, just be sure to tune it to a music mix station before you start playing.
11. Invite me over? Please?