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  • Interesting Facts and Statistics About The Game of Pool

    Pool & Billiards Facts

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    Stats and Facts

    • Pool evolved from a lawn game that is similar to croquet, which is likely why the pool table is green (to represent the grass).
    • The word ‘cue’ comes from the French word ‘queue’. Billiards was originally played with a mace, which made shots difficult if they were close to the guard rail, so players would turn the mace around and use the narrow ‘queue’ (which means ‘tail’) end.
      Pool is considered one of the safest sports in the world.
    • “Pool” is originally a gambling term, one that is still used today — for example, the office ‘football pool’. In the 1800s, a ‘pool room’ was a place for betting on horse racing, and billiard tables were used so patrons could entertain themselves by playing games between races.
    • Wool has been the primary fabric used in making billiard cloth for over four centuries.
    • Legend has it that Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello home in Virginia contained a hidden billiard room, as they were illegal in the state at that time. Monticello however, refutes this claim, stating that Jefferson frowned upon activities such as billiards and that they were never outlawed in Virginia while Jefferson was alive.
    • The term “scratch”, when a player accidentally pockets the cue ball, comes from the early days of pool, where the penalty for such an action resulted in a point being ‘scratched’ off the players’ score.
    • In the movie The Color of Money, from 1986, Tom Cruise performed nearly all of his trick shots.
    • At 35.6 years, billiard champions have the highest average age of any sport.
    • In 1873, Billiards became the first sport to have a world championship.
    • The patent for the first coin-operated table was awarded in 1903, which enabled players to play a game for one penny.
    • Before modern plastics such as celluloid were invented, billiard balls were made out of ivory, and needed to be cut from the exact center of a tusk. Only three or four balls could be made from a single elephant tusk.
    • The leather cue tip was invented by Captain Mingaud, who was a political prisoner during the French Revolution. He was able to have a billiard table installed in his cell, and fell in love with the game. When it came time for his release, he asked to remain in prison for a longer duration, so he could continue to play.
    • When Mary Queen of Scots was killed in 1586, the cloth from her billiard table was used to cover her body.
    • The first billiard room was built in England in 1765.
    • The largest billiard hall in the world was built in Detroit in the 1920s. Called The Recreation it sported 103 billiard tables, 88 lanes of bowling, twenty barber chairs, three stands for manicuring, fourteen cigar stands, a 300 seat restaurant, an exhibition room with theater-style seats for 250 guests, and a lunch counter on every floor.
    • The beauty of pool tables and cues owe a big debt to marquetry, which is the centuries-old art and craft of applying thin slices of wood to a structure to form decorative patterns, designs or pictures.
    • Since close to its inception, the Church has been harshly critical of pool, denouncing it as an activity for the sinful and morally bankrupt. In 15th century France, the King and the Church prohibited billiards play. Likewise, in the early days of American history, laws reflected the views of the Church and consequently billiards play was illegal in many areas.
    • The first known billiard table in recorded history comes from a personal inventory of the French King Louis the XI. The inventory describes a bed of stone, a cloth covering, and a hole in the middle of the playing field, into which balls could be driven.
    • The term “behind the eight-ball” is derived from pool. In many pool games, the player will lose if her cue ball hits the eight-ball first. If the cue ball is right behind the eight-ball, this makes for a difficult shot and the player could easily lose the game.
    • When a player makes a shot that bounces the ball off the side rail, this is called a “bank shot”. The reason for this is because in the early days of billiards, the tables featured rails that were flat walls and looked like riverbanks. They were therefore called “banks”.
    • A “masse” shot is a shot made by hitting the cue ball with the cue held nearly vertically, so the cue ball spins around another ball before hitting its intended target ball. Many pool halls have banned this shot because it’s possible to rip the cloth covering the table.
    • An “English” shot is the term used for putting spin on the ball, whereas in Britain this is called a “side” shot. While visiting USA, English players showed the spin shot to American players, hence the term’s use in America.
    • It is said that during the American civil war, billiard results were given more coverage than war news, and that players were so famous, cigarette cards were made featuring them.
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  • (Survey) Which Bar Game do you Like Best?

    Favorite Bar Game

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  • When to Change a Pool Table Cloth

    Most pool tables are made of slate, which is a nearly-indestructible material that can last for decades.  The cloth covering the pool table, however, won’t last forever.  While it may last for over a decade under normal home use, it eventually will need replacing.  Just as Astroturf on a football field wears over time, pool table felt wears with use and age.

    This wear is the result of friction.  While the pool balls themselves do not damage the felt, they do collect pool chalk that acts as an abrasive, like sandpaper, tearing away at the fibers of the felt.  The felt can also be damaged by falling or bouncing balls. While the damage is unfortunate, it’s considered a normal side-effect of playing pool.

    While it might be difficult to see if a cloth needs replacing by sight alone, sliding your fingers along the surface should help you judge.  If the cloth feels bristly, like beard stubble, or if it’s easy to pick pieces of fuzz and lint off the table, then it’s time to consider a replacement.  Also consider a replacement if the felt responds to pressure from your hand with movement or bunching.  When replacing pool table cloth, it’s best to use a high-quality brand such as Strachan, Matrix, Hainsworth or Eddie Charlton.

    If the pool table cloth has been damaged by missed shots - i.e., the cue misses the ball and scratches the table, a complete felt replacement may not be necessary.  The first step would be to purchase pool table cleaner from a professional billiard shop, and clean the area to remove any marks.  If there are any small holes in the cloth, patch kits are available to fix them, although any patching will leave seams behind that could hinder play.

    The best way to maintain your pool table cloth is to keep it covered when not in use, and keep it clean.  It’s also a good idea to try and avoid making a lot of jump shots or trick shots, as these can crush the felt and it never fully recovers.

  • Legacy Billiards Buyer's Guide: Legacy Rails Are Engineered To Last

    Hello. I'm Cris Gould with Legacy Billiards.
    One of the most important features in a table is how the rails are secured to the slate.
    The hardware that's used to tighten these rails has a lot to do with how your table plays.
    Some manufacturers use nut plates, some use inserts held with three screws.
    While other manufacturers use a device called a T-nut. It's manufactured for the furniture industry and provides the best torque possible to secure the playability of your table.
    Legacy uses the largest T-Nut in the industry to promote better play for you.
    Along with the type of hardware that's used to secure the rail, how the hardware is held in the rail is very important to how the table plays.
    Many manufacturers use a softwood sub rail to hold their hardwood fastener.
    Legacy uses a hardwood core, inserts the fastener, glues the core back into the rail and allows for the most torque possible to secure the rail to the table. This means better playability for you.

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    what a man really needs

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  • Legacy Billiards Buyer's Guide: Billiard Table Slate

    Hello. I'm Cris Gould with Legacy Billiards.
    One of the key components of a billiard table is the billiard slate.
    There are tables that are offered in non-slate versions, but those are not going to meet the expectations that many consumers have.
    Slate comes in varying thicknesses from half-inch all the way up to two inch.
    One-inch is considered the standard in the industry and that's the size that you see professionals playing on when you see them on TV.
    Legacy Billiards offers one inch slate tables on every model that they sell.
    Slate has only two purposes, one is to maintain a flat level surface and the others to provide weight.
    Both of these things are provided on every Legacy Table that you would buy.

  • Legacy How-to: Shuffleboard Maintenance

    Hello. This is Cris Gould from Legacy Billiards.
    One of the most exciting product categories we've introduced have been shuffleboard tables. We offer several sizes from 9 foot to 16 foot. One of the important things i want to talk about is how to maintain and properly put shuffleboard wax on the play surface.
    Often this is misunderstood by many people, so we're going to demonstrate how this procedure works. Legacy offers two different products that will be needed to use. One is our Black Ice Shuffleboard wax and the other is a product called Black Ice Silicone Spray.

  • Legacy Buyer's Guide: Quality Built Shuffleboards

    Hello. This is Cris Gould from Legacy Billiards. I wanted to talk about some of the features that distinguish the quality of a great shuffleboard. Legacy uses a polymer poured top on all surfaces of their shuffleboard with a quarter inch thick. The most important feature of the polymer top is that during the manufacturing process there is no air underneath the polymer. If there were an air pocket and something like a puck were to fall on the top, it would crack it and cause damage to the shuffleboard. All of our poured surface playfields come with a lifetime warranty to ensure that no cracking happens. We test every playfield by dropping pucks to make sure no air is underneath.

  • Shuffleboard Adjustments

    The next things that i want to talk about that are important to a new purchase of a shuffleboard are three basic adjustments that have to be done for the leveling and the playability of the board.
    One obviously is through the legs, making sure that the board is flat from side to side and through the ends.
    If it's not flat, obviously the puck would slide off to one side.
    Another important adjustment is what's called sway. Because the shuffleboards use leg levelers we're able to raise the ends of the board and create a sway for the play field.
    This is what controls the puck's speed. Obviously, if it did not have this feature and the play field were to arch, the pucks would simply slide off the end, and you couldn't play it accurately.
    The third adjustment is the climate adjusters that are underneath the play field.
    That's a set of hardware put in specific places along the playing field that actually apply pressure to the wood and curve the board.
    This curving of the playing field allows the puck to remain on the play field and actually puts a small curve at the end right over the scoring zone.
    This is the proper way that a shuffle board should be adjusted for tournament play.

  • Legacy Billiards Buyer's Guide - Legacy only uses solid hardwood for their tables

    Hello. I'm Cris Gould with Legacy Billiards.
    I want to talk about one of the most common misconceptions about how billiard tables are described in the industry today.
    A lot of companies refer to their product as being made out of solid hardwood.
    This is not true. Many times they're described as all wood. All wood means they could be plywood, MDF, they could also be another product called SPF. All of these products are simply not solid hardwood but they are made up of hardwood components glued together that are categorized as all wood. Legacy only uses solid hardwood materials and components in all their tables across the line. When you're shopping for the right product for something with high value, make sure you look for solid hardwood.

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