Ball return versus drop pockets

Songman

Registered
As I prep for a new room, I see alot of availability of used tables with drop pockets. The majority of tables seem to be Diamond and Brunswick Gold Crowns with returns - but I have discovered some rooms with drop pocket tables.

What are the pros and cons, and regulation rules, concerning these options?

Please educate me.
 

garczar

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
As I prep for a new room, I see alot of availability of used tables with drop pockets. The majority of tables seem to be Diamond and Brunswick Gold Crowns with returns - but I have discovered some rooms with drop pocket tables.

What are the pros and cons, and regulation rules, concerning these options?

Please educate me.
Not a room owner but i'm not a fan of ball-return tables. Much prefer balls in the pockets as opposed to digging them out of the box all the time, especially when playing 1p. Diamond sells a ton of them so i guess people like them.
 

Kevin Lindstrom

14.1 Addict
Silver Member
My opinion

Get the ball return tables. People "casual players" will tire quickly of having to retrieve all of the balls out of the pockets. I think serious player prefer the ball return tables too. I know I much prefer ball return at the poolroom and on my home Gold Crown 4 as well.

Thanks

Kevin
 

sixpack

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I always preferred the ball return tables - until I started playing again recently much older and with some back/mobility issues...Bending down to dig balls out of the ball return is much more painful.

So I think older players, in general, will be more likely to favor drop pockets. Younger players will more likely prefer the ball return.
 

Type79

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
As I prep for a new room, I see alot of availability of used tables with drop pockets. The majority of tables seem to be Diamond and Brunswick Gold Crowns with returns - but I have discovered some rooms with drop pocket tables.

What are the pros and cons, and regulation rules, concerning these options?

Please educate me.

It's personal preference.

I don't like walking around the table to retrienve the balls nor having to empty a full pocket during a game.

I also like the sound of ball returns. I started playing on Gold Crowns with ball returns and have almost exclusively played on Gold Crowns with ball returns including my GC I at home.

In the used market, I can't imagine there being any difference in price between one or the other.
 

garczar

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Get the ball return tables. People "casual players" will tire quickly of having to retrieve all of the balls out of the pockets. I think serious player prefer the ball return tables too. I know I much prefer ball return at the poolroom and on my home Gold Crown 4 as well.

Thanks

Kevin
I guess my home room has some "hard-to-tire" players as all(12) big-tables are drop-pocket and no one cuts their sessions short because of the pockets. To each his own but i don't know one person in my circle of playing friends that like ball-return tables except of course bar rags.
 

bbb

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
i am not a room owner but here is my 2 cents
if i were to open a room
i would buy
drop pockets because of low maintenance
balls can get stuck in the return tracks
also for onepocket drop pockets are better because your opponent cant conveniently put one of your balls on his side...:grin-square:
for the record
i like the convenience of the ball return for my home table
 

jtompilot

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Seems most of the ball return tables seem to get a ball stuck now and then.

I prefer drop pockets even when practicing. If I’m playing 1P then no question return tables suck big time.

If your looking for used tables I’d have two drop Pocket tables with rail extensions for 4 1/8 corners and not let any hacks play on them, 1P play only. Give the return tables to the hacks and 9 ballers.
 

ChrisinNC

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
For a poolroom owner/manager, the advantages of drop pockets are that they are quieter, less wear on the balls, less maintenance and hassle issues keeping the ball returns cleaned and unobstructed and the need to keep the ball collection box cleaned. As a player, I feel the sound of the ball hitting the bottom of the pocket is more aesthetically pleasing. Also for older players, bending and reaching down to retrieve the balls out of the ball return collection box can be a little difficult.

The main advantage of ball returns are that it's easier for players to gather and rack the balls at the end of every game, particularly for those practicing by themselves, and ball returns eliminate the need to keep the pocket bottoms cleaned out.

In my opinion, once players learn the accepted proper etiquette that the player who will be breaking the next game retrieves the balls from the two sides and two corners at the head (breaking end) of the table while the racker retrieves the balls from the two corner pockets at the foot (rack end) of the table, it really is not an issue or delay to be playing on a drop pocket table.
 
Last edited:

deanoc

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
only played on ball return tables a few time in texas i prefer drop pockets on my home table
i had a Kling with ball return but i never liked it
 
Top