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My Soren Sogaard Super Royal Billiard Table is about 10 years old.  It plays 3 cushion great, but  a ball coming off the 2nd and then progressively each successive cushion has "sharp angles" - meaning the Table plays a bit shorter than it should, and when balls are struck hard into the rails they bounce slightly.  We think the cushions are a bit low.  A table mechanic recommended shimming up the rails using laminate strips.

What do you recommend?  If raising the rails is a good idea, how much (what should be the correct height for the cushion off the slate bed)?


Hi J,

If a ball struck directly at a cushion "hops" as it returns that tells me the cushion point is set a bit low. The "rule book" standard for the height of the nose of the cushion is 62.5% - 64.5% of the diameter of the balls in use. Table mechanics often place the cushions as low as they can because it makes the table play faster.

If you're using 60.3 mm balls (2 3/8") the nose of the cushion should be between 37.7 mm and 38.9 mm. It's a bit difficult to determine the difference of a millimeter but if you're at or below 37mm I'd try raising the rails a bit. If your cushion's point is at 36mm it may be set for 57.2mm balls.

One thing I should mention is that if you're in a climate where it has been very cold and dry during the winter you may see that hop disappear and the table play a little longer when the temperature and humidity increase. I lived in south Florida for several years and was amazed at how differently tables played at changing temperatures and humidity. They used to leave the doors open and the air conditioning off in the morning, the high humidity made the cloth as slow as playing in wet grass but the warmer temperature made the rails bouncy and fast. In the afternoon they'd close the doors and turn on the air conditioning and by 6:00 PM you had less bounce from the cushion but the cloth would roll forever. You literally had to adjust your game every 15 or 20 minutes until early evening. Of course the easiest thing to do is nothing. Unless it's driving you crazy maybe wait a month or two and see what happens.

Hope that helps you a bit,



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Bill Newsted


I can answer questions related to shot-making, aiming, position play, strategies, practice, mental preparation and the psychology of the game. Also, rules as they vary from venue to venue and how to become a winning player. I have experience recovering and maintaining tables and will also answer questions related to cues and billiard equipment. However, I prefer not to make brand recommendations. I do not offer information identifying old tables and equipment or estimating their values.


I have played over forty years in every state in the US (except Alaska). My experience is largely in pool rooms but I have also played extensively on bar tables and in league organizations. I have directed numerous tournaments up to the professional level and have played several world champion players. I am a former Billiard Congress of America instructor.


B.S. in Visual Communication M.A. in Education: Career and Technology Education

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