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The Advantages of One Piece Slate
There are basically two types of pool table slate available - one piece and three piece. Walk into any billiard retailer and chances are all of their tables use 3 piece slate. The main reason for this is that building one piece slate tables require a much stronger framework (called the "baseframe") to support the slate, and this costs a lot more money in time and materials. The best example of a one piece slate pool table is the coin operated pool table found in almost every tavern and club in the U.S. They are universally recognized as one of the finest tables made and are the most sought after table in the used market. So compared to one piece slate tables, 3 piece slate tables are easier, faster and cheaper to build. However, 3 piece slate tables have a few major problems...
If you purchase a 3 piece slate table from a dealer you have to pay for the installation. Some dealers include this in their price while others have a separate charge but either way, you're paying for it. With our one piece slate tables you have the choice of either having us do the final installation (for an additional charge) or doing it yourself. The finish installation is very easy for a homeowner to do since we've already done all of the work. Both the slate and the rails are already covered in cloth and the cabinet is pre-assembled. All you have to do is bolt on the legs, screw in the leg levelers, level the table (using the leg levelers and not wood shims) drop in the slate, bolt the rails down and tack in the pockets. If this sounds like a lot of work, in reality, it will take you about an hour and at the point you recieve the table from us, there is nothing we can do any better than you. And here's the proof of how popular this option is. About 8 years ago we started to give people the option of doing the final assembly and currently over 85% of our customers choose to self-install their own tables and we've never had anyone come back to us and say the job was hard or that we lied to them. In fact, the feedback we get from customers is that they can't believe how easy it was and what a great way for them to save some real money for a little bit of work.
Once a 3 piece slate table is set up, it cannot be moved or even picked up without the chance that the seams between the slate will separate. If this happens it is a very expensive service charge. Because one piece slate tables have no seams you avoid this problem.
Another minor item that retailers forget to mention is that if you purchase a 3 piece slate and ever want to move it (say from one house to another or just to another room) the table has to be completely broken down. This means that the cloth has to be taken off the slate so they can remove the slate screws that hold the individual slates in place. This breakdown, move and re-set can only be done by a professional billiard mechanic and today the average cost is between $400 - $600. Sometimes the existing bed cloth can't be saved so then the price jumps to over $700...just to move your table! Our tables are very easy to move yourself so you can save yourself a whole lot of money.
Selling your table and the resale value is the final problem with 3 piece slate tables. Obviously since you haven't even purchased a table you're not thinking about selling it, but things happen. Kids grow up, people get transferred or lose their jobs and some even get divorced, and if the day comes that you need to sell your 3 piece slate table you are going to get killed on the resale price. Again, the reason is simple. Because you have to completely break down a 3 piece slate table to move it, the buyer of your table is faced with paying someone $400 - $600 just to get your table moved into their home. So after you decide how much you want for your table, the buyer is going to subtract another $400 - $600 from your price. So now its easy to see why the table that you spent so much for, in reality, isn't worth much at all. With our one piece slate tables, the buyer can easily move the table themselves so its resale value is substantially higher and, as an added incentive, the new buyer now enjoys all of the benefits of a one piece slate table.
Finally, we don't make dozens of fancy tables with fancy legs, what we do make are good looking, well built tables for people who work hard for their money and are concerned about protecting their investment.
If you have any additional questions please call us at 1-608-423-3000.
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