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Buyer's Guide

Buyer's Guide
Buying Your First Foosball Table
FoosDirect, waterman@foosball.com

Note1: this guide is from guys who sell tables, so beware of hidden subliminal messages (BuY bUy Buy) burried herein J.

Note2: if foosball to you is just a spinning toy or game,then you may not want to buy from us and/or pay more than $300 for a table, BUT, please read on, there are some important things to consider when shopping for any foosball table.

With the popularity of foosball tables on the rise, and lots of manufacturers trying to get a piece of the market, it's increasingly difficult to make a buying decision. "Full Size" tables in the US range in price from $200 to $1500 for non coin operated tables. With the demand for foos tables at a high, and supply being someone limited... you will see the SAME high end brand/model of table vary in price by several hundred dollars. Do a little research and make an informed buying decision. To that end, we hope this guide will help...


  • Did you know that spinning of the rods is "illegal" on tour? Answer this question first... this will determine if you should shop at the low end of the price range, or the high end.
  • This is not an issue if you are buying a toy/game for the kids. Save some money and shop around $2-400 range, of course if money is not the driving factor, especially if you appreciate quality and/or want a really sharp looking table... buy a premium table from us! J
  • If you want to develop the "skills" essential to the sport then you will want to look for a table that has a consistent roll or surface, a table that has a "round" ball that rolls true, a man/ball/surface combination that lets you stop, pin and maneuver the ball. You need to shop the $600 and up range.


  • For the kids only. See spinning above, but note that there are 17 years of age and under events on the pro tour, and there are kids in their early teens and younger that compete in the open events - AND WIN!
  • For the adults and kids, a table with adjustable height can be a big plus... the pro tables are set at 36" in height. A bit high for very short foosers. Several models in the pro line of tables can be adjusted a few inches.
  • Adults or Big Kids, College "kids", or lots of kids. You will definitely need to look for a high quality cabinet. There are tables that will stand up very well to high volume/abusive play, Yes, even in your college fraternity or sorority.


  • Physical dimensions of the full size foosball table. Length 56", Width 30"
  • Don't for get the rods stick out, and players need room. Minimum suggested playing area - 7 foot by 8 foot is good. That'll give you a little over 1' at each end of the table and almost 3' on the sides for players to stand. For big kids a little more room would be recommended.
  • Appearance of table - There are high end furniture grade tables that look sharp. You can even order custom finishes of the table to match your decor.


  • Especially on the low end of the price scale, you will see a wide variety of construction quality in the materials used and in the craftsmanship. Watch out for some of the low end imported tables. Check the sturdiness of the table.
  • Look at the surface, is it flat? Can it be leveled? Check one-piece surfaces with ramps in the corners. Some make for rather large "dead spots" in the table where no playing figure can reach the ball. Others have weird rolls.
  • Look at how the side walls of the table are held together. Rough play will cause a lot of banging of the side walls and if the they are not held together in the middle of the cabinet you could have them separate. Most low end tables have "tie rods" that hold the sides of the tables together. Usually just "3" one in the center, and 2 on the ends. Higher end tables will have brackets or hardware that run the length of the side wall to secure the side wall to the often times much thicker surface.
  • Width of the sidewall. Wider is typically better, but you will find exceptions. Quality of construction and materials is perhaps more important than the thickness. Look for a true/straight sidewall. Bounce the rods off of the sidewall, and press the rods against the sidewall to test for sturdiness.
  • Thickness of the surface. Thicker is typically better. (note: on thickness - the old style "TS" tables had a somewhat flexible surface that was key to it's man/ball/ surface feel. this is no longer desirable since the "ts" clones typically come with very poor quality balls. With newly designed tables the new man design and ball compounds allow for a excellent man/ball/surface feel, a consistent roll AND a more durable thicker surface.)


  • Keep in mind that quality foosball tables retail for much higher prices in most traditional stores. Buy from us on the Internet and chances are good that you might get a pleasant surprise when you try to sell it locally.
  • Regardless of what table you buy should you need to sell, try the local newspaper, worst case you should be able to get 1 to 3 hundred less than what you paid for it. Yes, that means if you by a table for under $300 you'll probably be junking it after a while. If you can invest a bit more capital up front, you'll keep a higher resale value AND you'll get a table which will allow you to get so much more enjoyment out of this amazing game of foosball.

SUGGESTIONS from Foos Direct...

  • If you appreciate foosball as a skilled game, then you'll want to shop the professional or competition rated models. They start in the $600 price range but are well worth it since you'll have a table with ball control capabilities that allow for development of passing and shooting skills. Lesser tables will have limited play capabilities.
  • Don't pay too much for a middle of the road table that will not let you learn the skilled style of play. If you want to sell a midrange table, your resale market is smaller.
  • If you do get a recreation/entry level table and you get hooked, then be sure to contact us when you are ready to move up to a more challenging model.
Happy Foosing "Now BuY bUy Buy" Jim & Eric, J

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