Turning a white elephant into something useful

Although our pool table is not precisely the white elephant in the house, it’s fair to say that for the amount of space it occupies compared to the hours of use it gets it has reaped its share of complaints from me.

But MV has now designed a solution that will enable us to make the pool table a multi-purpose table.

First of all, let me say the impetus for this solution was not my nagging but the fact that MV decided Jesse was old enough for a Carrera race track for his birthday. (Never mind the fact that this fulfilled his own childhood dreams.)

The track measures 2.1 by 1.4 metres and would take up a considerable amount of floor space – spare space that we don’t have. By coincidence the top of the pool table measures the same width and length – voila the obvious choice for siting the new race track.

To maximize the entire width and length, as well as to protect the playing bed, we needed to put some sort of surface over the top of the table. A sheet of plywood wasn’t strong enough to support the weight without bowing.  But MV came up with the idea of tongue and groove paneling – perfect.

The panels measure 140 mm width by 1.4 m length so it was just a matter of buying enough lengths to fit across the table.  The added bonus is when we want to remove it we don’t have to find a place for a piece of board more than 2 metres long, we just stack up the paneling!

The final step was to cover the paneling with a non-slip matting – the type used for camping and various other purposes that comes in a roll at the hardware store (in this case our local Bunnings) so you just purchase the length you want.

Now our multi-purpose table was ready for action – and action it got. The race track is a big hit with all the boys – big and small – and even the girls.


So what piece of furniture have you converted from its original use? Or have you got a secret vice that you pretend is just enthusiasm for your child’s hobby?


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