which type of side pocket is easier?

bhayhurst

New member
In one hand are the side pockets used in Chinese and English 8 ball. The tables have the snooker-style side pockets, with the rounded edges. (For discussion let's call them snooker-style pockets or something like that.)

In the other hand are the other style of side pockets that, say, your average American player is used to. (For discussion, call them... I dunno... angled pockets?)

Which is easier? Or is one type easier for one type of shot and the other easier for another?

rounded.JPG
not_rounded.JPG




Types of shots I'm thinking about which might be easier/harder dependent on pocket style:

(1) thin cut:
thins_side.jpg


(2) missing the point:
point.jpg



(3) cheating the pocket:
cheat.jpg


And anything else...
 
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middleofnowhere

Registered
I have played on those in Europe. The rounded ones reject balls quicker. The pool tables I played on also had rounded corner pockets as well. Italy has some pool tables with pockets so small the balls hardly fit in them. Mind you, these were pool tables not snooker tables. I also noticed that the English snooker tables had actually pretty big pockets (Almost pool size) on the 6x12s. Not like the American 5x10 snooker tables that are very tight.
 

bhayhurst

New member
So, generally, the answer you have is "rounded pockets are harder".

How about for those really thin cuts that you have to hit really-really soft?
 

Greg M

Active member
I think it's easier to pot balls at shallower angles on middle pockets on English pool tables than American ones, since the snooker-style pockets have less of a jaw to miss, but it's easier for balls to actually pot and stay down on American tables. I hate having balls reject and swirl back out of English pockets. Does my head in.

On another point, it's ridiculously easy to pot balls down a rail on American tables compared to English pool tables. I played American eight– and nine–ball for the first time a few days ago and I was surprised that I didn't have to play rail shots at pocket pace. That being said, the ball size and cloth differences threw me off.
 
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mikemosconi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Every single brand of pool table plays differently- does not matter - whether we are talking about rounded pockets or angled cut pockets- there are so many factors involved in how a pocket plays or a table plays that there is no generalization that holds true. Among each brand of pool table the particular set up of that table is also the biggest factor on how it plays. Then factor in lighting, humidity, etc. on top of the table itself.
 

Geosnookery

Well-known member
I think it's easier to pot balls at shallower angles on middle pockets on English pool tables than American ones, since the snooker-style pockets have less of a jaw to miss, but it's easier for balls to actually pot and stay down on American tables. I hate having balls reject and swirl back out of English pockets. Does my head in.

On another point, it's ridiculously easy to pot balls down a rail on American tables compared to English pool tables. I played American eight– and nine–ball for the first time a few days ago and I was surprised that I didn't have to play rail shots at pocket pace. That being said, the ball size and cloth differences threw me off.
Wobbly balls down the rail still potting is one reason I can’t watch American Pool. Fortunately Chinese 8 ball tables cure this travesty…only way to pot a running rail ball is with surgical precision and spin so it drops.
 

middleofnowhere

Registered
I'm talking about pool tables.
Well of course pool snooker are two different games. But there's certainly a trend now for the pockets to become smaller on pool tables for professional play.

Back in the 1960s when pool was really having a boom they actually made the pockets bigger to make the game easier for social play among non players.

Playing straight pool players used to think nothing of keeping a ball on the rail and then coming off the rail into the stack for a break shot. You could fire the ball 100 miles an hour and it would always go in. You better think twice about doing that on one of these new tight Diamonds.
 

Pin

Registered
I'd agree with Greg.

For thin approaches to middle pockets (where the OB starts close to the long rail), rounded jaws allow you a bigger margin for error, so are easier.
(Technically, Mike's right that it also depends on other variables - pocket size, how the slate is cut - but in practice, I think I can say every rounded-jaws middle pocket I've played on has given substantially more margin for error in these shots than straight-jaws.)

And for corner pockets, straight jaws play substantially easier than rounded jaws.

I like the English rounded jaws, but then, it's what I've grown up with.
 

lakeman77

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I thought Chinese 8 ball side pockets were easier, but I've only played a few hours on Joy table.
 

MurrayNevada

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Playing straight pool players used to think nothing of keeping a ball on the rail and then coming off the rail into the stack for a break shot. You could fire the ball 100 miles an hour and it would always go in. You better think twice about doing that on one of these new tight Diamonds.
Does Diamond still offer larger pockets as an option? I think they called them "League Pockets." I have an 8' Olhausen with 4.5" pockets and that is tight enough for me. Sure wouldn't want them any tighter.
 

Patrick Johnson

Fish of the Day
Silver Member
I've wondered how snooker and pool pockets compare, and this thread reminded me to do something about it.

For what it's worth, here's a visual comparison of typical side and corner pockets drawn to scale - the pool pockets are to WPA specs; I don't know about the snooker pockets, but their dimensions are visible.

The diagrams also show the slate pocket shelves for the snooker pockets, pretty similar to pool shelves.

The side pocket comparison is mixed: the pool pocket has far more accepting facings and a wider throat, but the snooker pocket allows wider approach angles - I think the facings and throat are bigger problems and the pool pocket is easier.

The corner pocket comparison also favors the pool pocket. The snooker pocket's curved facings reject more balls both because they constrict the pocket's physical size (at mouth and throat) and because their angles are less forgiving.

pj
chgo

Combo Pockets.jpg
 
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HawaiianEye

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I've wondered how snooker and pool pockets compare, and this thread reminded me to do something about it.

For what it's worth, here's a visual comparison of typical side and corner pockets drawn to scale - the pool pockets are to WPA specs; I don't know about the snooker pockets, but their dimensions are visible.

The diagrams also show the slate pocket shelves for the snooker pockets, pretty similar to pool shelves.

The side pocket comparison is mixed: the pool pocket has far more accepting facings, but the snooker pocket allows wider approach angles - I think the facings are a bigger problem and the pool pocket is easier.

The corner pocket comparison also favors the pool pocket. The snooker pocket's curved facings reject more balls both because they constrict the pocket's physical size and because their angles are unforgiving.

pj
chgo

View attachment 609466
I agree.
 
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