Ball Sizes

Choosing the best ball sizes for your game of play does not seem like something you need to do if you are playing the standard American version of pool. However, that's not always the case when it comes to other forms and other styles of game play. In these situations, you may need to make a few changes to the types of pool balls you buy or use. Here are some frequently asked questions to help you to get started.

When Was the Pool Ball Developed?

Today's pool ball is one with a pretty standard form and made in mass produced fashion. But, billiard balls have been made since the 15th Century. The first pool balls were very rudimentary and made of wood. During this time and for the next 100 years or more, different materials were used in pool ball development. Common materials included clay, celluloid, bakelite, and crystallite. More modern versions also included materials made of plastic and steel.

Q: What Is the History of Ivory Pool Balls?

Ivory has long been an ideal choice for the pool player. It began popping up for pool play in the early 17th Century. From about 1627 through the mid-20th Century, this was one of the most commonly used pool ball materials. But, ivory does not have the best track record in terms of overall pool play. It was expensive to make, and the ivory was hard to come by as well.

Q: When Was the Modern Pool Ball Developed?

A pool ball that is similar to the ones we use today first was developed in the 1900s. It was made of celluloid. The problem with this material, though, is its instability. Simply, celluloid pool balls exploded very often on delivery. Today's pool ball was developed by the brand Aramith. It is made of phenolic resin. Over time, it is changed somewhat to be a mixture with polyester and other polymers.

Q: What Size Are American Style Pool Balls?

The standard American pool ball is 2 1/4 inches and weighs 5 1/2 to 6 ounces.

Q: What Size Are Snooker Balls?

Snooker, a unique form of billiards, is a less common game. The balls for this version of the game measure 2 1/8 inches or 52.5 mm.

Q: What Makes Pool Balls Different From Each Other?

Today, there are many types of pool balls on the market. They vary by factors such as the material, but also the color, pattern, and the type of game they are designed for. There are several versions of pool played, but most use the American standard pool ball because of how easily it is available.

Q: What Are American Pool Balls?

In the game of pool, billiard balls are used to play versions of the game such as eight-ball, nine-ball, or one-pocket. In the U.K. this version of the game is called Kelly pool. In most versions of the game, there is one 8-ball. There are also balls #1 through #7. These are called solids. Balls numbered #9 through #15 are striped balls. The 8-ball tends to be a unique look to it, so it stands out, usually being a black ball.

Q: What Happens in the Game of Snooker?

In this game, there is a single white cue ball, 15 red balls, and 6 additional balls of various colors. Individuals play the game with the red balls racked with six associated colors aligned at various locations. Once the red balls are pocketed, the players then choosing one colored ball to hit, based on its value.