Shuffleboard, otherwise known as deck shuffleboard or floor shuffleboard, is a game in which players push weighted discs using cues and send them gliding down a narrow court. The purpose of this action and the game aims to try and get the discs to come to rest within a marked scoring area.
While deck shuffleboard is usually played on the deck of a ship, not everyone has the opportunity to go on a cruise, so table shuffleboard is the more accessible option of the game. The game is played on a specially designed table that is built around the playfield. The table can vary in size starting at nine feet and going up to the full regulation size of 22 feet.
The table is usually made from a single piece of premier maple timber that has been precisely flattened, honed, and treated with a low-friction coating. The playfield on the table is marked with a numbered scoring zone. The scoring zone on the table can be marked at both ends of the playing field or just at one end – depending on the design on the table.
When playing shuffleboard, the playing surface should be kept spotlessly clean for optimal performance and this is done by sprinkling silicone powder (shuffleboard wax or shuffleboard sand) over it. This material is ranked by friction or speed and helps pucks to skim the surface of the table smoothly.
The best shuffleboard tables have a slightly concave shape.
How to Choose a Shuffleboard Table
There are several things to consider when you are shopping around for a shuffleboard table from the size to the surface material. While size might be the most important factor if you have limited space, other factors like the thickness and type of material of the playing surface, climatic adjusters, and scoring system.
Here’s a look at what you need to consider before making a shuffleboard table purchase:
The size of the shuffleboard table is one of the most important factors when looking at buying a shuffleboard table. Bear in mind, it’s not only the space in which the table will stand but can you get it through the door?
Shuffleboard tables can range in size from nine feet to 22 feet, but there are also smaller models available that measure just six or seven feet. Ideally, there should be two to three feet of open space on either side of the table for the players and spectators to move about.
Shuffleboard tables ranging between eight and 14 feet are ideal for the home and casual play, while larger models up to 22 feet (regulation size for tournaments) will boast more features and are good options for professional players.
2. Playfield Thickness
The thickness of the shuffleboard table is also an important factor when shopping for a shuffleboard table. you want a smoother playing field without compromising the stability of the table. Traditional shuffleboard tables are usually three inches thick. The thickness of the table ensures a stable playing surface and allows you to sand the surface if you want a smoother playing field without compromising the stability of the table.
The thickness of the table is also influenced by the number of finishes and sealants used on the playing surface and not necessarily due to the actual thickness of the wood. Be sure to check this on the description as this could be important when sanding the table further down the line.
3. Surface Materials
It is important to get a shuffleboard table that is going to last and while a shiny table may be attractive, check the materials that the playing surface is made from to ensure it is a durable wood. A variety of wood is used for making shuffleboard tables, ranging from Canadian Soft Maple, North American Maple Wood, and Russian Birch to Poplar and White Maple.
However, hardwoods like maple, birch, oak, and mahogany are the best woods for playing surfaces as they can withstand dents and damages caused during play.
4. Table Finish
The finish on the playing surface of the shuffleboard table is all-important as they prevent the formation of air bubbles which can influence a smooth playing field. Table finishes can either be poured or sprayed, however, a poured finish is a better choice as they can prevent cracks from forming should there be any surface imperfections. Polymer finishes are the best choice as they last longer and are more durable than lacquers and shellacs.
5. Outer Cabinet Structure
The structure of the outer cabinet is also important as this is what holds the whole shuffleboard table together. Outer cabinet structures made from solid hardwood are the best option as they give the table weight and are durable and hardy.
6. Climatic Adjusters
Changes in temperature and humidity levels affect a shuffleboard table and cause misalignment which can affect the playing field. Higher-end shuffleboard tables come with built-in climatic adjusters, however, you can also purchase your own if your table doesn’t have them.
The best shuffleboard tables have a slightly concave shape and climatic adjusters are two supporting beams beneath the table that allow the playing surface to have a slight bend. There are usually four to six adjusters under the table.
7. Scoring System
Shuffleboard tables have two types of scoring grids: the three-level grid (or 1-2-3 scoring system) – most common on indoor tables and the triangular scoring grid, which is usually used on outdoor tables. Tables can have manual or electronic scorers, but shuffleboard tables with electronic scorers are more expensive.
Table shuffleboard showing the scoring table.
Best Shuffleboard Table
Here are some of the top shuffleboard tables on the market.
Playcraft Woodbridge Shuffleboard Table
The Playcraft Woodbridge Shuffleboard Table is a high-quality shuffleboard table that provides excellent gameplay. It is available in different size options, ranging from nine to 16 feet in length. The nine and 12-foot tables come with a 1-2-3 indoor scoring pattern, while the 14 and 16-foot tables are designed with a 1-2-3-4 pattern.
The table comes with a 1-5/8-inch-thick solid hardwood butcher block playfield finished with several coats of satin polyurethane for ultra-durability with hardwood corners for stability and a one-piece cradle made from hardwood microlam plywood.
The Playcraft Woodbridge Shuffleboard Table is supported by reinforced double-paneled pedestal legs with six-inch metal leg levelers and cabinet storage. . The nine and 12-foot tables have two legs, while the 14 and 16-foot tables have three legs. The interior and floors of the table are finished with a color-coordinated carpet.
- Good quality entry-level shuffleboard table
- Available in different dimensions to suit different space requirements
- Budget-friendly and affordable
- Assembly instructions are not very clear
Playcraft Telluride Pro-Style Shuffleboard Table with Electronic Scorer
The Playcraft Telluride Pro-Style Shuffleboard Table with Electronic Scorer is a great option for a shuffleboard table with an electronic scorer. The table is also beautifully designed and finished with a solid hardwood construction that ensures durability and stability. There are clear birch accents and a rich espresso stain on the wood which gives it a gorgeous finish.
The table’s playfield is made of edge-glued, kiln-dried Canada maple wood covered with a 1/4 inch poured polymer surface. Both the cradle and leg applique of the Playcraft Telluride Pro-Style Shuffleboard Table are made of unique solid hardwood and there a one-piece horseshoe provides the cradle with additional strength. The table also has carpeted gutters and a side wall that help reduce noise
The Playcraft Telluride Pro-Style Shuffleboard Table with Electronic Scorer features a 1-2-3-4 scoring system and a 24-inch-stained hardwood overhead electronic scorer with a plexi face. This excellent product also boasts Pro-style threaded climate adjusters and three-inch leg levelers.
- Overhead electronic scorer
- Pro-style threaded climate adjusters
- Beautiful espresso stain finish
- Poured polymer surface for a smooth playfield
- One-piece horseshoe provides extra strength
- Assembly instructions are not very clear
Hathaway Challenger Shuffleboard
The Hathaway Challenger Shuffleboard features a hardwood butcher block coated with a polyurethane surface for a smooth playing field. The table has pedestal-style legs that also serve as a storage cabinet and are made from a dark cherry laminate with antique bronze hinges to give it a classic, vintage look.
The legs of the table have independent leg levelers to ensure a flat and steady playing surface and integrated climatic adjusters to ensure optimum gameplay. This table comes in two sizes: a nine-foot and a 12-foot model and a choice of cherry, PVC laminate, or walnut finish.
- Built-in storage cabinets in the legs
- Two sizes available
- Beautiful vintage finish
- Adjusting the table is difficult
Playcraft Extera 12′ Outdoor Shuffleboard Table
The Playcraft Extera 12′ Outdoor Shuffleboard Table is designed specifically for use outdoors. Made from heavy-gauge extruded aluminum, the table is fully weather-resistance and features steel powder-coated cabinet and frame components.
The table boasts large leg levelers that provide stability and a smooth playing surface. The table is available in two sizes: a nine-foot model with a 15” wide playfield and a nine-foot model with a 20” wide playfield. It also comes with a set of deluxe weights, deluxe abacus scorers, speed wax, and a table cover with a frame.
- Designed for the outdoors
- Steel powder coated cabinet for storage
- Available in two models
- Comes with deluxe weights, deluxe abacus scorers, speed wax, and a table cover with a frame
- Needs a large space for comfortable play
Playcraft Coventry Shuffleboard Table
The Playcraft Coventry Shuffleboard Table is made from a thick solid hardwood butcher-block bed which is finished with 10 coats of lacquer to create a smooth, glossy surface. It features a traditional 1-2-3-4 indoor scoring method with outlined block numbers, authentic abacus scorers, and camel carpeted gutters and walls.
The table has a cradle with a unified horse collar ends with stained, hardwood applique detailing. This detailing is also found on the leg panels. It is available in several lengths: nine, 12, 14, and 16 feet with climatic adjusters including a set of eight deluxe weights and a can of speed wax.
- Thick solid hardwood bed provides stability
- 10 coats of lacquer to create a smooth, glossy surface
- Available in different lengths
- Includes a set of eight deluxe weights and a can of speed wax.
- The lacquer finish isn’t great
Playcraft Georgetown Shuffleboard Table
The Playcraft Georgetown Shuffleboard Table features a solid hardwood veneer cabinet and is available in a variety of finishes, including cherry, espresso, and honey. The table boasts a thick solid single stave butcher block playfield with a ten-layer polyurethane coat for a smooth and glossy surface.
The table has a manual 1-2-3 system on the 12-foot models and a 1-2-3-4 scoring system on the 16-foot models. The tables also feature a climatic adjuster, leg levelers, and plenty of leg storage.
- Two different scoring systems
- Ample leg storage
- Available in two sizes and a variety of finishes
- Assembly is complicated
Snap Back Tavern Shuffleboard
The Snap Back Tavern Shuffleboard is a non-traditional-sized shuffleboard table and at just seven feet is ideal for smaller spaces. It features an electronic scorer with a highly visual LED display for easy and convenient scoring and boasts leg levelers to ensure stability and durability.
Made from dense fiber wood, the table has a 2.3-inch-thick playing surface with a smooth and clear coating that provides an easy glide for pucks when playing. The Snap Back Tavern Shuffleboard comes with a 90-day product warranty.
- Ideal for small spaces
- Electronic scorer
- 90-day product warranty
- Not for competitive use
GoSports Shuffleboard and Curling 2-in-1 Table
The GoSports Shuffleboard and Curling 2-in-1 Table is the perfect table for the casual shuffleboard player and can be converted into both shuffleboard and a curling table. It has a simplistic design with sturdy construction and is slim and easy to store and transport.
This 2-in-1 table has a solid wood frame surrounding the playing field and features eight rollers that glide smoothly across the field to mimic the experience of the full games. Measuring 45-inches long by 13-inches across, this small table is suitable for playing games both indoors and outdoors.
- Ideal for small spaces
- Provide two types of games
- Can be used both indoors and outdoors
- Not for competitive use
BARRINGTON Shuffleboard Table
The Barrington Shuffleboard Table is high-quality shuffleboard is a high-quality table with a sturdy dark hardwood A-frame. Easy to transport and set up, the table measures nine feet in length and meets the standards for tournament play.
The table features sawhorse-style legs that provide excellent stability and has a UV coating that is scratch-resistant and creates a beautiful finish. The Barrington Shuffleboard Table comes with a free bottle of shuffleboard powder that keeps the surface smooth and slick and allows pucks to move faster on the playing field.
The table has an integrated scoring system with an abacus design on both ends of the table and comes with a 90-day warranty.
- Sturdy dark hardwood A-frame
- Easy to assemble
- Sawhorse-style legs
- Integrated scoring system with an abacus design
Carrom 650.01 Shuffleboard Game
The Carrom 650.01 Shuffleboard Game is a small, children-sized table that can be set up on a dining table or an outdoor picnic table. This table shuffleboard features several unique scoring zones similar to oversized, floor set shuffleboard fields with dark red and blue markings.
Measuring nearly 45-inches long by almost 13-inches by 1.5-inches and weighing just 11 pounds, this shuffleboard table comes with eight pucks with bearings that help the pucks move smoothly over the board.
- Small and easy to transport
- Easy to assemble
- Unique scoring zones
- Eight pucks with bearings
- Suitable for beginner players
Frequently Asked Questions
How long is a shuffleboard table?
Shuffleboard tables range in size between seven 7 feet long and 22 feet long. A standard, regulation-size shuffleboard table is 22 feet.
What kind of wood is a shuffleboard table made from?
Shuffleboard tables are generally made from solid hardwood like Canadian Maple for durability and longevity. Lower quality tables use birch, poplar, and other less expensive woods, which are more susceptible to warping.
Is installation difficult?
Setting up a shuffleboard table is not complicated. All of the individual components are pre assembled. The only assembly involved is attaching the legs to the cradle. This is just a matter of putting the legs into the designated location, putting the bolts through the predrilled holes, and tightening the nuts. The playfield (the board itself) is heavy (up to 420 lbs on a 22′ model) and will generally require three to six people to help lift it and set it in place. The other parts of the table, namely the cradle and the legs, can be easily managed by two people.
Does installation require any special tools?
No. Commons tools like a 1/2″ or 9/16″ wrench, a screwdriver, and a 2′ and/or longer level are usually all you will need.
How do you level a shuffleboard table?
Once the legs have been attached to the cradle, it is ready for leveling. The next step would be to start at either end of the table and place the level on top of the cradle directly over the legs. Continue by turning one of the threaded “feet” on each leg until the cradle is level in that spot and then move to the area over the next leg.
There are either two, three, or five legs, depending on the brand and length of the table. Continue in this fashion until you have worked your way to the other end of the table. Similarly, you would then check the end-to-end (lengthwise) level.
Because of the size of a shuffleboard table, it will take from a few days to a week to completely settle in, depending on the type of flooring. This means that you may need to do a little fine-tuning after the board has settled, even if you have someone else install your shuffleboard.
What are climatic adjusters and how do you use them?
Climatic Adjusters are used to keeping the playfield true. Because the playfield of a shuffleboard table is wood, it will behave like any other piece of wood and will swell a little in more humid weather and contract slightly in drier conditions.
This can affect the trueness of the playfield. The “climatic” adjusters will compensate for those natural occurrences. For most people, a shuffleboard table is a major investment. Before you buy a shuffleboard table, it makes good sense to make sure the company you buy it from can tell you, based on where you live, how your climate will affect your table, and how and when to use the climatic adjusters.
Improper use of the climatic adjusters could cause a table to crack, so check the knowledge, experience, and qualifications of the people you are dealing with before you buy.