You have just gotten a new pool table, or you’re in the process of recovering one, one of your primary concerns should be the table cloth. The reason is that whatever fabric you go for has a direct impact on your game as it’s the only part of the table your ball gets in contact with. So, it is necessary to select a pool cloth that never affects your game negatively.
When choosing the fabric that overlays your slate, you should go for a perfectly flat type that ensures consistent ball speed.
To get a pool cloth with this quality and more, you need to think about Simonis.
Simonis provides excellent pool table cloths, and popular among the available variants are the Simonis 760, 860, and 860HR.
This article will provide you enough details between Simonis 760 vs 860 vs 860HR to help you choose the table cloth that suits your game.
Simonis is a textile mill company that is solely into the production of billiard fabrics for cue-sports – pool, carom, and snooker.
It is currently the largest and oldest textile company in the billiard industry. Simonis produces premium worsted billiard cloth in most colors and styles.
The company, which is based in Verviers, Belgium, is built on over three Centuries of Experience.
Over the years, Simonis has focused on ensuring that pool players have the most accurate and most consistent play. Hence, the company’s craftsmen are dedicated to manufacturing and weaving of premium quality wool cloth.
By their excellence, they have developed superior table cloths that have defined the needs of pool and snooker tables.
So far, the distinctive qualities of Simonis cloth are yet to be duplicated. Little wonder Simonis Cloth has been on many tournament tables around the world for many generations now.
Simonis 760 | 860 | 860HR — 7ft (Multiple Colors)
Simonis 760 | 860 | 860HR — 8ft (Multiple Colors)
Simonis 760 | 860 | 860HR — 9ft (Multiple Colors)
Simonis 760 vs 860 vs 860HR
Simonis produces different types of felt for cue sports, the 760, the 860 and the 860HR are among their most popular.
You may have heard that Simonis makes world-class table cloth for cue sports and many consider it the best cloth in the game.
If you wanted to dress your table in a Simonis, you’ll be set back a few hundred dollars… that’s right, it’s not cheap!
For an 8ft table, you could be looking to spend over $300
You might wonder; is Simonis cloth worth it?
Well, that really depends on you and your budget but in terms of playability, it’s not got the crown as the best for no reason.
100’s of years of development have produced a truly fantastic table felt which produces excellent consistent ball roll and play. It really is one of a kind.
At first sight, you may be wondering which one to pick, what is the difference between the Simonis 760 vs 860 vs 860HR?
Well, I intend to answer this question for you so can pick the best one.
The Simonis 860 is Simonis’ professional-grade table cloth. The pool cloth, which is also called “The Standard for Pool,” is an excellent pool table cloth for ball action. It is used in almost every professional billiard tournament around the world.
Simonis 860 is produced with a blend of 90% wool and 10% nylon. The highly worsted wool combed with high thread gives an assurance of longevity.
This table cloth was specifically produced for 9 balls with the intention that it could also be suited for games at home.
Ball speed on the 860 cloth is slower when compared with that of 760 cloth. However, it has a better ball burns combating rate than the 760 cloth, basically because of its relatively high wood content.
The Simonis 860 cloth also has the most popular color selection option among the Simonis cloths. There are 27 colors available for selection.
In using the Simonis cloth collections, especially the Simonis 860, it is recommended you pair the felt with a pair of Aramith pool balls.
These sets of balls, when used, and kept clean help reduce any friction burn on the cloth’s surface.
Basic Features of Simonis 860
- 90% wool / 10% nylon
- 23 oz (0.87 kg)
- Slightly slower than 760
7 ft (Multiple Colors)
8 ft (Multiple colors)
9 ft (Multiple colors)
Simonis 860HR is arguably the most durable and reliable commercial-grade pool table cloth currently in the market.
This pool table cloth, which is also referred to as High Resistant, is a tough sheet, heavier than the Simonis 760 cloth; yet, it doesn’t lack the native Simonis’ roll.
It is the second-fastest pool cloth from Simonis with its speed somewhere in-between that of the Simonis 760 & 860 cloths. The material composition of the Simonis 860HR is 70% wool with 30% nylon, same with Simonis 760.
The thread count of the Simonis 860HR is the same as 860; however, there is a slight change with the shaving process.
This slight change is to ensure the cloth has an almost 100% woolen surface. This change has been described as the reason the Simonis 860HR cloth doesn’t show ball burns the same way the Simonis 760 does.
The weight as well as the blend and professional finish of the Simonis 860HR give the cloth commercially strong durability, high-quality performance, as well as accuracy.
These property combinations also allow the cloth to form strong resistance to abuse of extended use.
The Simonis 860HR is, therefore, a strong recommendation for both Commercial and home games purposes.
It is currently available in 4 colors -Simonis Green, Blue-Green, Tournament Blue, and Royal Blue.
Basic Features of Simonis 860HR
- 70% wool / 30% nylon
- 24 oz (0.91 kg)
- Speed between 760 & 860
Simons 860HR — Multiple Colors & Multiple Sizes
- High Resistant. A true hybrid, the weight of 860 and the composition of 760. It offers the best compromise between the ball control and the speed of your cloth. 860HR is the most durable commercial-grade billiard cloth made. Heavier than 760, napless, tough as nails, yet still providing the true Simonis roll. Nap-free, will not pill, fluff or shed. Pre-cut rails
- SIMONIS cloth delivers the most accurate play. For generations, Simonis has focused on what makes for the most accurate, most consistent play and we have woven it into our cloth. Simonis is considered the best overall value in billiard cloth because of its durability and unmatched playing characteristics. Simonis is the oldest company in the billiard industry and the only textile mill in the world dedicated solely to the production of cloth for pool, carom, pyramid and snooker
- Smooth, even threads assure a consistent speed, English and cushion rebound. High wool content worsted thread construction takes ball spin more consistently and helps reduce ball burns. This precise construction provides outstanding accuracy and consistency which is why Simonis has remained the choice for tournament play for generations
- When installing SIMONIS cloth, be sure to put the MARKED SIDE UP. This smooth side has printing on the edge with the grade, i.e. SIMONIS 860. This is the playing surface of the cloth. (The back of the cloth is not sheared as fine and is slightly fuzzy) .SIMONIS cloth is meant to be installed tightly over the surface of the slate. This not only provides the best playing conditions, but it will ultimately increase the usable life of your cloth and your enjoyment of the game
- After your table is installed and leveled, it’s only you, the ball and the cloth. Whether you play for sport or reward, whether you spend 500 or 50,000 for your table, insist on the truest playing cloth . Simonis!
The Simonis 760 happens to be the fastest cloth for pool tables made by Simonis. With a material content of 70% wool with 30% nylon, it is faster than the Simonis 860 by 10%.
Because of the speed of the cloth, it comes highly recommended for “high traffic” tables, as seen in pool halls.
You could sometimes find the 760 cloth being used for Competitive Pool Tournament Play. Simonis 760 is a great use for games like Straight pool, Bank Pool, one pocket, and also traditional 8- and 9-ball.
One good thing about the Simonis 760 is that its speed and accuracy are maintained over time, and as it ages, it doesn’t change the ball roll. Although the 760 is slightly higher than the 860, the 860 however, because of its high wool content, will combat ball burns better than the 760 overtime.
The appearance of the Simonis 760 cloth and its overall performance will be maintained when you pair it with a set of Aramith pool balls made from pure phenolic resin.
The reason is Aramith phenolic balls are the hardest composition and are resistant to heat. Aramith pure phenolic balls are unlike other balls as other balls will degrade much quicker with time. When these non-phenolic balls degrade, the residue on them can generate friction between the ball surface and cloth resulting from burning or marking.
Simonis 760 is nicknamed “The Original Worsted Blend”, and is currently available in 15 colors.
Basic Features of Simonis 760™
- 70% wool / 30% nylon
- 21 oz
- Slightly faster than the Simonis 860
- Nap-free (No pilling, fluffing or shedding)
- High-speed play
- Assured long-lasting wear
7ft (Multiple Colors)
8ft (Multiple Colors on Storefront)
9ft (Multiple Colors on Storefront)
Which Simonis felt is best for your table
It’s fair to say that Simonis felt is among some of the best pool table felt in the world. With three top felts to choose from its hard to know which one to pick? To understand which felt is best for you, we need to compare all the felts so you have a better idea of which felt would be more suited for your table.
Lets start by comparing all the information side-by-side so we can see what we are dealing with.
|Style||Worsted thread||Worsted thread||Worsted thread|
|Blend||70% wool/30% nylon||90% wool/10% nylon||70% wool/30% nylon|
|Thread Per In||177 (thinner weave)||177||177|
Both the 860HR and 760 have 70% wool with 30% nylon and the 860 has 90% wool and only 10% nylon.
All three felts use a 177 thread per inch, the only difference is that the 760 threads are not as thick of a weave to the thread count. Basically this boils down to the fact that the 760 is thinner and therefore gives less ball resistance making it the fastest of the 3 Simonis felts.
- The 760 being faster It’s widely considered the best felt for straight pool (14.1), Bank Pool & One-pocket.
- The 860 is perfect for games that require more accuracy and slower cue ball action, ideal for 8-ball, 9-ball, and 10-ball to name a few. Its a professional-grade table cloth used in many tournaments around the world.
- The 860HR is a good felt for most games, its slightly faster than the 860 but still allows for good cue ball control. This is the heaviest and most durable of the three cloths and perfect for more heavier usage
With most pool games, you want more control over the cue ball, so if you play on a faster felt, the cue ball is more likely to travel further, bouncing off multiple cushions and therefore lose some of the accuracy you would get if you used a slower felt.
So, the speed of the felt, which will affect the cue ball accuracy, is a big factor when deciding which felt to dress your table in. With the 760 being the fastest followed by the 860HR and the 860 being the slowest.
All three of the felts are nap-free so there is no pilling that will affect the direction the balls roll.
It’s worth noting, that to keep playing on an optimum felt, it’s hugely important to keep the felt clean. Chalkdust, if left on the table, will get into the fibers of the cloth and over time will break it down. There are many ways to clean you felt like new, some great cleaning tips are listed in the link above, but if you want to keep with the Simonis theme then check out their Simonis X-1 Pool Table Cloth Cleaning Tool
I would recommend cleaning the felt after the days use, this way you can maintain the high quality in the felt which will keep a consistent playing speed and of course prolong the felts life.
The debate between Simonis 760 vs 860 vs 860HR and which one is good for the table has been asked a few times and at first glance, it’s easy to see the confusion. The speed of the felt is a big difference and one that will aid your decision on which felt to get.
A lot of people will say the 760 is too fast for most pool games, with the exception of 14.1 (straight pool) and I kind of agree, its a great felt but its noticeably fast. The 860 and 860HR are perfect for most other pool games in my opinion.
If you can’t decide on the best pool table felt for your table then check out some alternatives, I took a deeper look at 5 felts for your table, all very good but it was still a Simonis table felt that took the top spot.
Rob is an avid player and fan of all cue sports, particularly 8-ball, and snooker. He has competed in a few local 8-ball tournaments and although he is not a professional, he can compete with the best of them.