Deep dive into table restoration from Hamilton Billiards

table restoration

Snooker is the perfect way to bring together the whole family after long and tiresome days at work or school. They also act as a stylish piece of furniture for any room.  Which in turn will certainly impress any friends as they come round to visit.  But to look its best you need to work on snooker table restoration.

Having a snooker table is beneficial for family morale.  It can also helps improve both concentration and your thinking process. Unity in the home is vitally important in this present day.  A time when people are subject to intense strain on a daily basis. This means snooker really is the best therapy for the modern day family.

However, snooker tables are likely to incur wear and tear.  Especially as they start to be used more frequently. Some of the most common issues are cloths ripping and supporting legs becoming worn down. This will compromise the enjoyment of the game, whilst leaving your table looking less than desirable. Snooker HQ highlight snooker table restoration and why it is vitally important.

A vast majority of snooker tables used in the home will have been manufactured before current regulations were put in place. That means these designs will need to have specialist restoration by in order to achieve a suitable level of consistency.

Restoring snooker tables is something that can be taken care of with ease by Hamilton Billiards. They have provided restoration services for over 30 years.  This has seen them awarded The Guild of Master Craftsmen.

Once Hamilton Billiards start work on restoring your snooker table, they will undertake a wide range of servicing to improve the table’s appearance. This includes: brushing and ironing the cloth, checking the level of the table and tightening all the bolts.

table restoration

More often than not, tables will simply need to have restoration on the wood. This is something that can be undertaken by yourself, as highlighted in these WikiHow tips on how to refinish a wood table.

Here is a breakdown of simple refinishing tips that can help transform your worn down snooker table into a crowning centre-piece for your home.

Preparing to remove the finish

You must make sure your snooker table is positioned in a well-ventilated space. The best locations are workshops and garages.  Or if the weather conditions are suitable ideally outside.

If have difficulty moving the table whilst indoors open all the surrounding windows in order to keep the area ventilated.

You must also ensure that the area you are working in has been protected. This can be achieved by laying down plastic sheets or newspapers on the floor to protect any space being damaged or stained.

Apply the stripper

You firstly need to apply an even coating of paint stripper across the wooden areas of your snooker table. It will usually take around 20 minutes to dry out enough for a loose finish. Remember to adhere to the coating promptly after it dries otherwise it could be difficult to remove later.

Strippers typically come as either liquids, gels, pastes or semi-pastes. Liquid strippers are best suited to horizontal surfaces.  However thicker strippers work best on vertical surfaces as they can hang on much easier.

Another effective solution would be the use of chemical strippers.  But they need to be used methodically. It’s vitally important that you have adequate amounts of ventilation and wear both rubber gloves and eye protection when using this method.

Chemical strippers are specially manufactured to soften, peel and blister away any existing paint or varnish.

If you are working on antique snooker tables, you will need to make sure that you use appropriate materials that won’t refinish the design. For many older tables, the finish itself is a huge contributing factor to its overall value.

Remove the finish

Once you are happy that the stripper has adequately dried out, you will then need to use a plastic scraper to remove the finish. It is recommended that you use a plastic scraper.  Metal designs could make permanent scratches onto your table.

If you find difficulty with removing the finish, you should apply more stripper until the process starts to become more functional. This will need to be repeated until you are happy that the finish can be removed effectively.

Another effective tip would be soaking your scraper into the stripper and then using it to tackle any stubborn areas. Certain finishes such as enamel, will require multiple applications of stripper in order to complete the job to a satisfactory level.

Sand the grain

Using fine-grade sandpaper, you will need to sand down the wood lightly in accordance with the direction of the grain you are working with. This will instantly remove any irregularities that may still be present up to this point.

You will need to use your sandpaper to clean away any remaining finish and smooth down rugged areas. Finally, make sure you thoroughly clean all the areas you have worked on in order to remove dust or residue.

table restoration

Fill the grain

If your wood has an open grain and you want to achieve a smooth finish, you will need to ensure that it’s been filled in.

There is a multitude of different colours available for your grain filler. If you want something that will make your table stand out, you should select a colour that will contrast with the final colour of your table.

You should always apply the paste with a stiff paint brush or rag.  Making sure you work into the grain. If excess starts to appear, you should remove it with a scraper or putty knife. Always hold any device at an angle in order to avoid inflicting any damage onto the wood.

Apply sand sealer

Applying sand sealer will ensure that certain types of wood don’t absorb stains in an uneven fashion.

You firstly need to apply a coat over all the wooden areas of your snooker table.  Let this soak over a few minutes. Then, wipe away any excess and wait until it’s completely dry before lightly rubbing sandpaper to smoothen the surfaces.

In order to remove the stain from your table, you will need to keep applying the sandpaper until the stain has disappeared. This task is best completed with a motorised hand sander.

Apply your stain

To get the style you are aiming for, you will need to ensure that you apply the stain evenly to get any excess off promptly. Once you start to apply the stain, you should use a cheesecloth to continue removing any unwanted excess.

You will need to apply at least two coats of stain, using a light grade piece of sandpaper in between each coating to surface out any fibres that may be sticking up.

Add the final finish

In order to protect any work completed up to this point, you will need to apply a coating of either polyurethane, wax or tung oil. The type of finish that you select is a matter of personal preference. Any oil finishes will provide a soft and natural vibe.  Whereas polyurethane is known for being tough and durable.

You will then need to apply the stain onto the snooker table with a paintbrush. Whilst you are applying your chosen finish, you need to ensure you are always working with the grain of the wood. It’s important to allow the stain to soak for a few minutes before you wipe away any excess with a cloth.

Once you have restored your table back to its former glory, you will be able to play snooker with style and purpose. Your snooker table will act as a strong and compelling piece of furnishing for your home.  Whilst providing people with the opportunity to participate in a favourite pastime.

We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our tips on how to restore a snooker table. If you have a snooker table or any piece of furniture which requires restoration, please contact Hamilton Billiards today for some friendly advice.

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