Coin-Op Pool Tables

Coin-Op Pool Tables Used in Commercial Environments

When it comes to entertaining the clientele in a commercial pool hall, sports bar or corner pub, a pool table can certainly fit the bill. Pool and billiards is an excellent marriage of social entertainment and competitive gamesmanship. Patrons young or old can relax, have some good conversation, enjoy some food and drink all while participating in the classic past time known as shooting pool.  It’s quite common to find a pool table in a commercial establishment to have a coin mechanism built into it. These tables are known as coin-op (coin operated) pool tables.

Coin-op Pool Tables Sizes

The coin-op table is most often found inside the local tavern or sports bar. Larger pool halls usually house many non coin-op tables and charge table time pro-rated per hour. The tavern design however, is usually limited to space so it is more common to find one or two coin-op tables. These tables are usually 7 foot in size and sometimes referred to as bar boxes.  A smaller 6 foot coin-op table is also popular.

Coin-op Pool Table Basic Construction

The bar box, or coin-op table is typically constructed of poplar woods and fiber boards covered in commercial grade laminate. The cabinet style is very squared and “boxy” in shape with a deep and heavy cabinet. These tables will have four legs on each corner that have adjustable levelers threaded into the feet. It is common for the bar manager to have to move these tables at times to accommodate a dance floor or some other reason to have more space at the tavern. Because of the table being moved around often, the adjustable leg levelers allow for a simple leveling process that is not required by professional pool table installers. This will keep the table level and more enjoyable to play on.

Coin Operated Pool Table Slate

The coin-op table is almost always a single piece slate. Most home tables are three pieced one inch thick, but the smaller bar box tables are single piece ¾” thick. The single piece allows for easy leveling and again being able to move the table around without risk of popping the slate seams.

Coin-op Pool Table Rail and Caps

The corners of the tables are protected with metal caps that hide the seams of the cabinet and offer much durability to the table. The top rails are usually a hard poplar wood covered in a high grade laminate, keeping the table quite durable.

Coin-op Pool Table Gully and Coin Mechanism

The pockets on coin-op tables are “enclosed” inside the rails. As opposed to a more traditional wood table that has exposed hanging leather pockets. The coin-op pockets are enclosed and have a gully system. The balls fall into the pockets and travel down a gully rail system and are then dropped into the ball disposal area. In order to retrieve the balls out of the disposal area, it is necessary to put the proper amount of coins into the coin slot, slide it inward, which releases the balls and drops them into the end of the table where they can be reached for the racking process. This coin slot system allows the bar owner to make a return on the investment of the table, and always gives the game a sense of value, allowing it to be more competitive. This also prevents the management from having to charge table time per hour.

Coin-op pool table Cue Ball

Coin op tables will usually use a magnetic cue ball. This allows the cue ball to fall down a separate gully than the object balls and can be retrieved after a “scratch” shot without the use of more coins.  Older coin-op tables use larger cue balls to achieve the same result.

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