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Subject: Boardgametables.com his and hers table review rss

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I (him) am writing the bulk of this review. She (her) inserted comments throughout. If you have any questions about the process or anything we don't mention, feel free to ask in the comments.

For reference, she is
Jessica J
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Table with topper on


Specs

Knotty Alder wood with a Special stain. Blue narrow knit fabric. We got the inset topper and four cupholders (two on each end).


Order Process/Pickup

- Only two weeks from order to pickup! Seeing as how we ordered on the day their site went live, I doubt it will be the normal.

- Chad (the owner) sent us sample of the wood and fabric color choices to help confirm our choices. It was a nice touch.

We only asked for the fabric samples, but Chad sent us the wood sample as well. He also included both narrow and wide knit fabrics for us to look at.

- Close to us. Less than four hours driving time. We can't comment on the shipping because we picked it up in our van. It (along with the legs) fit easily in the back.

The table fit easily in the back provided we took out all the seats. If we had left the two captains chairs on the middle row in, it would have been REALLY questionable

Unpacking/Assembly

- Easy to attach the legs. Two dowels on the end of each leg that match into the table and one sturdy locking bolt per leg.

- The table isn't overly heavy. We could carry it easily in with just the two of us. I’ve learned since getting the table that the alder wood is a lighter weight hardwood, so I can’t speak to the others. I can’t imagine them being too heavy since this is a small profile table.

- All the pre-assembly stuff is well-labeled. It would be really hard to screw it up.

We did have a little bit of trouble figuring out just the right screw driver for the job. Because of where we chose to have the cup holders we needed a longer screwdriver that fit in the cutout of the cup holder to get the right angle on it




Just fit the dowels to holes and screw in one bolt


Customer Service

Above all else and no matter what happened, we knew that Chad would take of us. Fantastic customer service. He was very, very responsive to emails and in the one case where we needed a resolution (see topper section below), he bent over backwards to ensure we were happy.

Chad has been super helpful through the entire process.

Components

Table
- Great finishing job. All surfaces are stained and feel nice to the touch. This includes everything underneath. The surfaces you actually see and touch all the time are especially polished and feel wonderful to run your hand along.

- The grain is not over the top with the knotty alder. All the knots are subtle and don't draw attention to themselves. The grain never draws attention to itself at joints/corners/etc. where it might have otherwise been jarring.

- The special stain is darker than the website and the sample that was sent to us. Luckily, we love that it is darker, but still something worth considering.

- Is very comfortable to rest arms on. The finishing job on the corners of the rail are so so so smooth. I love it.

- Fits six people very easily.

Playing area
- Enough room. It isn’t a huge amount of room, but enough. We played six player Eldritch Horror and didn’t feel cramped. Mage Knight with two had plenty of room to spare. I imagine four would work fine.

- Color choices, so many! We love our blue. It gives a great contrast to the game components so they don’t get visually lost. Fun story, the first night we played, it actually was hard on my eyes with the light overhead reflecting off it. I was really worried it was TOO blue. It turns out it was just because I had only about 8 hours of sleep the previous two nights and just desperately needed to hit the hay.

We HAD to play the day we got it home, and it was only fitting that we play our favorite game, Arkham Horror (and that is not a light or short game).

- The fabric does seem really water resistant and cleanable. We’ve used a lint roller to good effect.

- Cards don’t fly across it and generally stay where they land. Its a blessing considering what normally happens on hard-tops. Also, super super super easy to pick up cards. Yay!

- It doesn’t feel bad to the touch, but its not super soft. Not scratchy either. If you are worried about it, I would ask for samples. I am super super sensitive to textures, so I think about this a lot. Just don’t expect felt or like a pool table.

- I go back and forth on how dice rolling feels. Long drops yield huge lateral movement, but moderate height keeps them mostly contained. We had one person who was pretty vigorous with his rolls, and his dice usually knocked components around. Sometimes I feel like the dice aren’t getting randomized well enough, but I’m really not sure. Throwing them against the side wall is very satisfying.

We've probably thought about the dice and tested them WAY more than is necessary. But the way some people roll the dice, they do fly every where. We can always count on one of our friends dice to be all over the place.


Such a perfect blue!


Inset topper
- Part of us wishes we had gone the route of the cover topper because we have already noticed some small crumbs/particles getting into the crack between topper and table and then falling into the playing area after removing the topper. It isn’t a lot, but combined with the worry of liquid spilling and seeping through that seam is a bit troubling to us.

I'm not sure we REALLY thought it through when we ordered it. We did, and we talked at length. But the combination of our artsy 6 year old and messy 3 year old makes things more tricky than we'd thought about. We do use a table cloth over the table for meals and art projects. I high recommend placemats and/or table pad under the table cloth. It stops a lot of the worry about spills.

- It looks awesome! This is the part that makes us glad we got the inset topper. It looks much more minimal than the cover topper and so so sleek.
Pretty much requires two people to remove. I’ve done it by myself. It’s not the weight, just a little awkward. The topper-popper (they should get that trademarked) is very functional and has some nice finishing touches with a leather attachment on the underside.

And if you ask me the table looks pretty darn perfect. I love the look of it in our house. It's very much our kind of style.

The leather attachment to the topper popper is nice, but every time I use it I get the indent of a screw in my finger. Perhaps something covering the screw would be nice.


- We’ve already begun to see wear (in the coloring) on the bottom of the topper from where we slide it into place when putting it back on. It isn’t really a problem because that’s what happens when you rub two pieces of wood together. It’s pretty minimal, but I thought I should mention it.

- The topper is bowing where the middle droops ever so slightly in the middle (not visible) so that the corners raise ever so slightly (slightly visible and raised to the touch).

To Chad’s credit, he is working with us and trying to figure out solutions (even new toppers) to make sure we are 100% satisfied. Great customer service, so I’m not worried about this issue. We did flip the topper for a few days, and it went back to normal for a while. I can't stress enough that I am not actually listing this as a negative because I have no doubt we will be happy in the end.

This is where a LOT of back and forth communication has come. We are super happy to work with Chad since he's taken good care of us to this point.

Cup holders
- They are indeed very strong. They don’t feel like they are ever going to break off.

- The metal cups are a nice size for snacks and fit well to the hole, but not too snug.

- With four people, our choice of having holders on the ends works very, very well. Consider well how you usually be playing your games when deciding on placement. It even works with just two people, even sitting in the middle.

It's harder with six with the cup holders, but we don't often place with 6. When we do, we just keep the cups on the counter. It gives a reason to stretch our legs

- I don’t know why they aren’t further away from the table! Some of our cups can’t even be used in them because they run against the table and won’t quite stand straight up. We were really worried our go-to game night drink wouldn’t work (the super big gulp below), but the way it starts skinny makes it work. Bottom line: most non-big-base cups will work, but I think they should probably consider moving the cup hole a little further away from the table.

- Nitpick: The interior borders of the cup holder holes were not finished at all. Not even sanded. You never see that because the provided metal cups are always in place, but still. It’s just jarring when everything else on the table is so well-finished.

We see it more often because we have to take the actual metal cup holders out after we play. Our kids tend to play with them or accidentally knee them (our six year old sits cross legged in his chair fairly regularly)


Probably any size Gulp will work


Conclusion

It would seem silly to give it a number rating or anything. I can sum it up by saying we love it! We have no regrets whatsoever. We love playing games on it and know we will for many years to come. It is a beautiful piece of both dining and gaming furniture. I do feel it is important to support competition in this niche board game tables market, and with this quality workmanship, it is easy to get behind them.

Ok, I feel like I have to give it some sort of rating, so here it is:

Rating: Buy!

We REALLY love table. It was a splurge we were going to wait on for a while, but thanks to Chad and boardgametables.com we were able to get something we really wanted for quite a while.

Provide you take the proper childproofing pre-cautions, it's mommy approved too.

Below is a time-lapse of all the games we played in the first week. I think it gives you a good feel for varied number of players and types of games.




Edit: If anyone wants to see a specific game played, you can pick anything from my BGG collection and we will record a time lapse of it.
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Pete
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How much did you pay total?

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1400 base plus 270 topper plus 300 four cup holders = $1970
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Braden Nash
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Off topic sorry, but what was that second game in the time lapse? Great looking table!
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Tony Go
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Bradennash wrote:
Off topic sorry, but what was that second game in the time lapse? Great looking table!


That is Pandemic: The Cure
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Great write up. Thank you for all the information.

Wow, the blue on your table looks much brighter than the blue color sample on the website. Requesting physical samples is a great idea to eliminate any surprises.

How much difference is there between the narrow and wide fabric, and what made you choose the narrow?

Very good information about the sagging insert topper. That alone would drive me to the cover topper. However, I wonder if a cover topper would start to wear the table rail over time? That would be no good.
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Braden Nash
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Horror Leader wrote:
Bradennash wrote:
Off topic sorry, but what was that second game in the time lapse? Great looking table!


That is Pandemic: The Cure


Thanks
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What a fun video! Kinda therapeutic. LOL
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Quaffer wrote:
Very good information about the sagging insert topper. That alone would drive me to the cover topper. However, I wonder if a cover topper would start to wear the table rail over time? That would be no good.

I saw a picture of the bottom of the cover topper, and I think it's padded.
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Jessica J
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Quaffer wrote:
How much difference is there between the narrow and wide fabric, and what made you choose the narrow?


I wanted the narrow knit because I didn't like the idea of seeing the weave so much.

Once we got the samples, I really liked the feel of the narrow a lot better than wide. The wide knit was a bit rougher to the touch, and the weave is more prominent.

In the pictures of the table on the website, I'm pretty sure the table is navy blue, not blue. We went with the brighter blue to provide more contrast to darker pieces of many of our games.
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If anyone wants to see a specific game played, you can pick anything from my BGG collection and we will record a time lapse of it.
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P.J.
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That's a great looking table. And as long as you get the play out of it, definitely seems worth the money for something so high quality.
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Kyle A
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This table looks fantastic. I am super jealous

There is only one thing that caught me off guard...$300 for 4 cup holders. That seems extremely steep to me
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I can't speak to the breakdown of that pricing, but we thought so too. The alternative was to not get them at all (it is an option), which would have been a bad choice for us since drinks are a big part of the culture at our house. I guess we just figured it as just part of the total cost of the table.

You could also think of the base price as a very affordable starting point and let them balance each other out.
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Kyle A
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WrongWrongWrong wrote:
I can't speak to the breakdown of that pricing, but we thought so too. The alternative was to not get them at all (it is an option), which would have been a bad choice for us since drinks are a big part of the culture at our house. I guess we just figured it as just part of the total cost of the table.

You could also think of the base price as a very affordable starting point and let them balance each other out.


Agree with your last sentence 100%.

I would require cup holders as well (we are all a bunch-a-drunks), but @ $75 per, I might reconsider using the company provided option.
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Quaffer wrote:
Very good information about the sagging insert topper. That alone would drive me to the cover topper. However, I wonder if a cover topper would start to wear the table rail over time? That would be no good.


The cover topper has fabric on the bottom to prevent any wear.

We are confident that we can come up with a solution to hold the inlay topper flush with the rail. We are going to make sure this is resolved before shipping any more inlay toppers and we will retrofit any already sold tables.

That said, there will always be a small gap on the inlay topper and two pieces of wood that aren't glued together can only be so flush. If you want a 100% smooth surface, then you are right. You should get the cover topper.


alexankh wrote:
$300 for 4 cup holders. That seems extremely steep to me


The slide out cup holders are time consuming to make. We also considered a separate piece that would attach to the table. That would have been cheaper, but we decided that the benefit of not having to store the cup holders anywhere was worth the extra cost. Additionally, we have found that having the cup holders already in the table rather than having to get up and get one means that they get used more often.
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Kyle A
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BlueWaldo wrote:

alexankh wrote:
$300 for 4 cup holders. That seems extremely steep to me


The slide out cup holders are time consuming to make. We also considered a separate piece that would attach to the table. That would have been cheaper, but we decided that the benefit of not having to store the cup holders anywhere was worth the extra cost. Additionally, we have found that having the cup holders already in the table rather than having to get up and get one means that they get used more often.


The cup holders do look very nice and convenient, although I would pass on them based on the price alone.

I do not doubt they are time consuming to make. Everything I have seen from you looks to be of top notch quality. Just some feedback for you. I appreciate the response
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None of your business

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I love the blue on the table. I might just have to copycat! devil
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Nice write-up and pics. Your table looks great and the time lapse video is really, really cool! What is your set-up for the video?



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If you look at the top pic of the post, you can see a hutch in the background. I have a Gorillapod up there with a phone mount. It lets me angle the camera any which way I want.
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BlueWaldo wrote:
The cover topper has fabric on the bottom to prevent any wear.

We are confident that we can come up with a solution to hold the inlay topper flush with the rail. We are going to make sure this is resolved before shipping any more inlay toppers and we will retrofit any already sold tables.

That said, there will always be a small gap on the inlay topper and two pieces of wood that aren't glued together can only be so flush. If you want a 100% smooth surface, then you are right. You should get the cover topper.


Glad to hear it's padded. Thanks for the input. Much appreciated
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jlady11 wrote:
I wanted the narrow knit because I didn't like the idea of seeing the weave so much.

Once we got the samples, I really liked the feel of the narrow a lot better than wide. The wide knit was a bit rougher to the touch, and the weave is more prominent.

In the pictures of the table on the website, I'm pretty sure the table is navy blue, not blue. We went with the brighter blue to provide more contrast to darker pieces of many of our games.


Thanks for the knit information. My gut would be to go with the narrow.

I would never have imagined going with a blue table top. But after seeing it on your table, I would consider it. I am impressed by the way it looks.
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Rick Koeppen
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Great review! I'm in the market for a game table (my new house is in the basement foundation stage right now) but I'd also like to use it for LEGO building. The inset is awesome because so often some of the more round pieces roll off the table. I LOVE the stain of your wood.
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We are quite smitten with it as well.

The table is made for cards, so it has just a smidgen of give so you can pick up cards and bits. I can see where it would be fantastic for Legos. It actually hadn't occurred to me to use it for that. My 6 year old LOVES Legos and will love being able to use the new table too. And all the pieces will stay in one spot and NOT fall on the floor. Genius! Thanks Rick.
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Dave Nish
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How long did it take to go from ordered to delivered?
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