Snooker Table Specifications

Written by denise kelly
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Snooker Table Specifications
Even the colours of the balls are different in snooker. (Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images)

You don't see snooker tables in the U.S. too often. It's mostly a British pastime, and the tables are much larger, making it harder to fit them into pubs and bars. To someone who is used to playing American pool -- and on the smaller 7-foot bar tables at that -- a snooker table can seem as big as a football field. However, official, tournament-worthy snooker tables aren't quite that big.

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Length, Width, Height

A standard snooker table's playing surface -- that is, the flat part within the rails -- should be 11 feet 8-1/2 inches by 5 feet 10 inches. Official snooker guidelines allow this measurement to vary within half an inch, but no more. Measuring the height of the table from the floor up to the top of the rails, it has to be at least 2 feet 9-1/2 inches but no more than 2 feet 10-1/2 inches.

Pockets

Like an American pool table, a snooker table has six pockets: one in each corner, and one in the centre of each of the two longer rails. The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association provides table-makers with templates so they can cut the tabletop so the pockets are the correct size and at the correct locations.

Lines

Americans call the end of the table where the balls are racked the "foot" of the table. In snooker, it is called the baulk end. At the baulk end of the table, there is a baulk line and a D. The baulk line runs parallel to the foot rail of the table, 29 inches from the rail. The area between the rail and line is called the baulk. You find the D in the baulk. The centre point of the baulk line is also the centre of a semicircle with an 11-1/2-inch radius -- part of the baulk line forms the straight back of the D, and the curved part arches toward the end rail.

Spots

A snooker table has six spots on it, each named for the coloured ball that you place there when setting up the table for play. Four of them go down the length of the table, right down the middle. The black spot (also called simply the spot) is at the top of the table, 12-3/4 inches from the head rail. The blue spot, or centre spot, is smack-dab in the middle of the table. The pink spot, or pyramid spot, is halfway between the blue spot and the black spot. The brown spot is also called the baulk spot, as it sits on the centre point of the baulk line. Finally, the yellow spot and the green spot are 11-1/2 inches on either side of the brown spot, at the corners of the D. If you're looking at the D as if it were a letter, the yellow is at the top and the green is at the bottom.

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