# Am I crazy or do side pockets on 7 ft tables play bigger for scratches than 9 ft?

#### Coos Cues

##### Coos Cues
Was in the process of a routine runout last night in league when I scratched in the side while shooting the 8 ball. I wanted to come off the side rail a bit shy of the side pocket on two rails to approach the 9 correctly instead of across the shape zone. I shot a tip of outside and I cut the 8 right down the middle of the pocket had it not scratched in the side it would have rolled right into the zone so the speed was correct My team mate who plays maybe a little better than me told me I should have used inside to avoid that rail altogether but that bring the speed margin of error way down and risks a tougher nine ball. I hate to approach the shape zone across it but not as much as I hate giving a game away like tht.

I was genuinely surprised to scratch and play mostly on my 9 foot table at home. So I set the shot up at home today and never came within a half diamond of scratching on a lot of tries.

So my question is, I know the two sizes are the same length/width relationship but is there something about the smaller table that brings that side pocket into play on shots like this that is different than a nine footer? I swear there is but can't wrap my mind around how this could be from a geometry/physics standpoint. I feel the side pocket gets me a lot more often on 7 footers than 9 shooting the same shots the same way Am I nuts?

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##### Well-known member
Not exactly a direct answer to your particular question, but a perhaps obvious observation: assuming the pocket size is the same, or close to the same on the two tables, the side pocket represents a larger percentage of the rail on a 7 foot table, and thus could be less forgiving.

Your inability to come within a half diamond of scratching when setting up the same shot at home would seem to discount my observation as the underlying cause, however.

I, too, find myself scratching more often in the side pockets on similar shots on my 8 foot table. Consequently, when looking at your diagram, I agree with your team mate and would try to avoid the side rail.

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#### TheBasics

##### AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Coos Cues, Howdy;

Bit of High Left for 3 rails.

What type of table was it? Valley side pockets are huge compared to the corners.
Diamond, I have not played yet so can't speak for them. Would be interesting if
someone could measure them (Diamonds), as well as the corners to get a good
comparison.

hank

#### Rocket354

##### AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
You are not crazy. The pockets are a bigger percentage of the rail perimeter.

But also, I have the same issue and I, too, usually play on a 9-footer. I've concluded the most likely reason is that I think of some shots in terms of locations rather than angles and distances. For example I might think "back and forth speed" rather than in terms of feet and inches. Thus, I overrun position quite a bit on a 7-foot table.

If you are doing a similar shot assessment, then for a routine shot "off the half diamond near the pocket" when translated from a 9ft to a 7ft table might just put you in the drink. Particularly if the tables play differently (cloth, cushions, humidity, etc).

I hate plink pool on toy tables, but I'm finding playing more on 7-footers is forcing me to get better at how I size up and execute my shots. So, overall, it is improving my game.

#### Cuedup

##### Well-known member
As a percentage the pockets are a larger surface area than in a larger table so.... yes.

#### Cornerman

##### Cue Author...Sometimes
Gold Member
Silver Member
Coos Cues, Howdy;

Bit of High Left for 3 rails.

What type of table was it? Valley side pockets are huge compared to the corners.
Diamond, I have not played yet so can't speak for them. Would be interesting if
someone could measure them (Diamonds), as well as the corners to get a good
comparison.

hank
I don’t know about anyone else, but just about every valley table I’ve played on, the side pocket is much smaller not bigger.

#### Nick B

##### This is gonna hurt
Silver Member
Bar Box tables have a short shelf. Yes even Diamonds so yes they will pocket easier. Also if you look at total percentage of rail vs pocket the math will tell you the occurrences will go up.

#### dquarasr

##### Registered
Is it possible the cushions play differently and it has little to do with table dimensions?

#### straightline

##### AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
As a percentage the pockets are a larger surface area than in a larger table so.... yes.
I think; this. I'd put it as less available rubber and more likely pocket on the small table.

#### Dan White

##### AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I initially thought about the pocket being a larger percentage of the rail but I'm not so sure that is the answer. If you were randomly hitting balls against that rail, then yes. In your example shooting the 8, the pocket is now where the rail is on the 9 foot table. I'm thinking your muscle memory/subconscious on the small table is causing you to hit the shot the same way you always do successfully on the larger table, if that makes sense.

#### Cuedup

##### Well-known member
I think; this. I'd put it as less available rubber and more likely pocket on the small table.
It's kind of the whole concept of tighter pockets are better.

Okay math geeks, if a 7ft vally had the same ratio of pocket opening as a 9ft procut Diamond, what would the pocket size be?

#### straightline

##### AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I initially thought about the pocket being a larger percentage of the rail but I'm not so sure that is the answer. If you were randomly hitting balls against that rail, then yes. In your example shooting the 8, the pocket is now where the rail is on the 9 foot table. I'm thinking your muscle memory/subconscious on the small table is causing you to hit the shot the same way you always do successfully on the larger table, if that makes sense.

There's also ball dynamics involved where on a big table, the added travel allows the spin and bend to play out. The OP may be in a virtual eddy on the small table where his default stroke and the shot dynamics conspire to create a bigger zone to the side pocket.

#### straightline

##### AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
It's kind of the whole concept of tighter pockets are better.

Okay math geeks, if a 7ft vally had the same ratio of pocket opening as a 9ft procut Diamond, what would the pocket size be?
You mean you are flirting with the jaws regardless of table size? Another possibility that comes to mind is the reach required on the big table might result in a more fluid delivery and one that differs from the same shot on the smaller table.

#### jimmyco

##### NRA4Life
Silver Member
...

Okay math geeks, if a 7ft vally had the same ratio of pocket opening as a 9ft procut Diamond, what would the pocket size be?
3.9" side pocket.

#### TheBasics

##### AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Howdy All;

I am finding it difficult to talk as I eating my words from my first post in this discussion.

Should have taken the time to post this earlier. It's from the Book "The Eight Ball Bible
by R. Givens. He gives a breakdown on pg.37 about pockets and sizes of side pockets
on both Big and Bar tables. Here it is;
"Big table players are slow to pick up on the fat that side pocket shots are pure poison.
According to the BCA Rule Book the side pockets on regulation tables must have a minimum width of
5-3/8" to a maximum of 5-5/8". On Bar tables the side pockets measure from 3-3/4" to 4-5/8" wide at
the Mouth and the throat quickly narrows down to 3-5/8" or even as little as 3-1/4"
It is impossible to fit two balls
the same time into the side pockets.

The side pockets on big tables are wider at the back then the sides on a bar table are at the mouth. The
sides on a bar table are actually tougher then a snooker tableside pockets! In fact, the side pockets
on bar tables are tighter then anything found on any other pocket table because the balls are still the
regulation 2.25 inch size.
The miserly size of side pockets on bar tables is one very good reason to avoid them."

Bare in mind that this was written/published in 2003
Sorry about any confusion I may have caused earlier.

hank

#### straightline

##### AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Howdy All;

I am finding it difficult to talk as I eating my words from my first post in this discussion.

Should have taken the time to post this earlier. It's from the Book "The Eight Ball Bible
by R. Givens. He gives a breakdown on pg.37 about pockets and sizes of side pockets
on both Big and Bar tables. Here it is;
"Big table players are slow to pick up on the fat that side pocket shots are pure poison.
According to the BCA Rule Book the side pockets on regulation tables must have a minimum width of
5-3/8" to a maximum of 5-5/8". On Bar tables the side pockets measure from 3-3/4" to 4-5/8" wide at
the Mouth and the throat quickly narrows down to 3-5/8" or even as little as 3-1/4"
It is impossible to fit two balls
the same time into the side pockets.

The side pockets on big tables are wider at the back then the sides on a bar table are at the mouth. The
sides on a bar table are actually tougher then a snooker tableside pockets! In fact, the side pockets
on bar tables are tighter then anything found on any other pocket table because the balls are still the
regulation 2.25 inch size.
The miserly size of side pockets on bar tables is one very good reason to avoid them."

Bare in mind that this was written/published in 2003
Sorry about any confusion I may have caused earlier.

hank
Old big ball tables had gnarly sides - close to a 3" cutout on the long rail. Thing about those tables is no matter what, they're still bar tables. Experts could slam 'em from any angle that went. Probably goes triple for scratching in 'em.

#### tomatoshooter

##### Well-known member
There's also ball dynamics involved where on a big table, the added travel allows the spin and bend to play out. The OP may be in a virtual eddy on the small table where his default stroke and the shot dynamics conspire to create a bigger zone to the side pocket.
I agree. Or a different speed of the cloth, Or balls in worse condition that don't slide the same way. I'm sure there are other factors, and I think they probably have a greater effect than the size of the table.

#### Sheldon

##### dontneednostinkintitle
Silver Member
Okay math geeks, if a 7ft vally had the same ratio of pocket opening as a 9ft procut Diamond, what would the pocket size be?
9' Diamond is 50x100" with 28" of pocket. 28 is 9.33333% of 300 (fudging a bit here since there is actually around 264.5" of rail if you subtract the pockets.)
7' Valley is 40x80" so 9.33333% of 240 is 22.399992
If the sides and corners of the valley are the same, they will be 3.733332" (22.399992/6)

#### Cornerman

##### Cue Author...Sometimes
Gold Member
Silver Member
Howdy All;

I am finding it difficult to talk as I eating my words from my first post in this discussion.

Should have taken the time to post this earlier. It's from the Book "The Eight Ball Bible
by R. Givens. He gives a breakdown on pg.37 about pockets and sizes of side pockets
on both Big and Bar tables. Here it is;
"Big table players are slow to pick up on the fat that side pocket shots are pure poison.
According to the BCA Rule Book the side pockets on regulation tables must have a minimum width of
5-3/8" to a maximum of 5-5/8". On Bar tables the side pockets measure from 3-3/4" to 4-5/8" wide at
the Mouth and the throat quickly narrows down to 3-5/8" or even as little as 3-1/4"
It is impossible to fit two balls
the same time into the side pockets.

The side pockets on big tables are wider at the back then the sides on a bar table are at the mouth. The
sides on a bar table are actually tougher then a snooker tableside pockets! In fact, the side pockets
on bar tables are tighter then anything found on any other pocket table because the balls are still the
regulation 2.25 inch size.
The miserly size of side pockets on bar tables is one very good reason to avoid them."

Bare in mind that this was written/published in 2003
Sorry about any confusion I may have caused earlier.

hank
No worries, Hank. There have been others that have reported huge side pockets on valley tables, so they must exist. Possibly on their bigger tables?

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#### Cornerman

##### Cue Author...Sometimes
Gold Member
Silver Member
9' Diamond is 50x100" with 28" of pocket. 28 is 9.33333% of 300 (fudging a bit here since there is actually around 264.5" of rail if you subtract the pockets.)
7' Valley is 40x80" so 9.33333% of 240 is 22.399992
If the sides and corners of the valley are the same, they will be 3.733332" (22.399992/6)
Feels like the 4:5 ratio is all you need 240” to 300”. The side pocket for a 9’ Diamond is 5”, so a theoretical 7’ table with equal pocket-to-rail relationship should be 4” .