We went out in the pouring rain yesterday, to Orange, CA to refelt this eight foot pool table. Our customer had purchased this Chinese import pool table about seven years ago. This is the first time it’s been serviced, I was surprised to see how dried and brittle the leather pockets had become in such a short period of time. Our customer was having a tough time deciding between Camel or Brown felt. So we had a half taken apart pool table and no felt color chosen yet. So the Mr. makes a phone call to his wife at work and asks if she can come home to help make the decision. 25 minutes later we had a color, Brown it is. In the process of disassembling the table the poor quality leather pockets had all but fallen apart. This very common amongst Chinese import pool tables. I believe the leather used is of the lowest quality possible. Normally after seven years of use, good quality leather pockets would be nicely broken in. These were very stiff and brittle, just merely trying to remove the staples which attached them to the slate bottom caused major breakage of the baskets. The existing leather pockets were black, I was planning on giving my customer some credit for his old pockets, he wanted a new set of brown ones to better match the stain of the table and also to tie in with the new chocolate brown felt. Unfortunately, the only thing I could offer was to throw them away for him.
This was pretty much one of the toughest jobs in a long while. The rails were made of some sort of hardwood that was so hard, it made our staples bend or break as we reattached the new felt to the rail bottoms. We muddled through and finished this pool table up and put it behind us. Even though this job took about twice as long as it should have, the pool table looked great and the customer was happy.