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Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules

Here is a set of coin operated table 8 ball billiard rules that we found circulated around the net, and various pool halls. They meet BCA 8 Ball rules as closely as possible, but with some minor modifications made to accommodate play on a coin operated billiard table or a bar table. These rules have been widely accepted in bar and tavern leagues such as the APA, TPA, and the Local Tavern Owner's Association League. These rules are not promoted by the BCA at this time, but research has shown widespread adoption.

Coin Operated Table Billiard Rules

Object of the game - Eight ball is played as a call-shot billiard game with 15 object balls which are numbered 1 through 15, and one cue ball. One player must pocket the "low" group of balls numbered 1 through 7, and the other player must pocket the high numbered balls, numbered 9 through 15. The first player to pocket their entire group of balls and then pockets the eight ball legally is the winner of the game.

Calling Shots - Obvious shots and pockets need not be called, however, the opponent reserves the right to ask about, and receive and answer about an intended shot if they are unsure. The opening break shot need not be called, and so long as a ball is legally pocketed, the shooting player's inning continues, regardless of whether or not they called anything, or called correctly. Any and all bank shots, kicks, and combinations are not considered obvious and thus, must be called by the shooting player. Players do not need to call minute details such as the number of kisses, caroms, banks, and cushions.

Player Responsibilities - In coin operated 8 ball, the challenging player supplies the quarters, and racks the object balls. If playing successive rounds, the winner breaks.

Racking the Balls - In coin operated 8 Ball, the balls are to be racked in a triangle formation at the foot of the table with the 8 ball in the rack's center. The one ball is racked at the foot spot, and a striped ball is placed in one corner, and a solid in the opposite.

Scratching on the Break Shot - If a scratch occurs on the break shot, the shooting player's inning ends, and the incoming player has ball in hand behind the headstring. The incoming player may not shoot at any object ball which lies behind the headstring unless they first drive the cue ball to the opposite end of the table, and cause it to return back to the headstring and strike the intended object ball.

Object Balls Leaving the Table on the Break - If an object ball is jumped off of the coin operated table during the break shot, it shall be considered a foul shot, and the incoming player may choose to either accept the table in position as it lies, or to take the cue ball in hand behind the headstring. The jumped object ball remains out of play for the duration of the game, and the table remains open.

Pocketing the 8 Ball on the Break - Should the breaking player pocket the 8 ball on the break shot, they receive an automatic win, and the game ends.

Definition of Open Table - In coin operated 8 Ball, the table is considered open when the choice of groups, whether stripes or solids, has not yet been established. When the table is open, the shooting player may strike any object ball in the process of pocketing the called ball. The only exception to this is hitting the 8 ball, which is off limits when the table is open. Should the shooting player strike the 8 ball first, they shall be assessed a foul. Any balls pocketed as the result of striking the 8 ball do not yield the shooting player any score, and the shooting player's inning comes to an end. The incoming player has ball in hand from any location on the table, and the table remains open.

Choice of Group - In coin operated 8 Ball, the choice of group is never determined on the break shot, regardless of whether balls are pocketed from one or both groups. Choice of group is determined by the next legally pocketed object ball on any shot after the break.

Legal Shot Definition - In coin operated 8 Ball, the shooter must hit one of his or her own group of balls first, unless the table is open, or the shot being taken is the break shot. Additionally, the shooter must either pocket one of his or her group of balls, or cause the cue ball or any numbered ball to contact a rail. The shooter may bank the cue ball off of the rail first as long as the next contact is made with an object ball from his or her group.

Coin Operated 8 Ball Safety Play - Safety play is legal in coin operated 8 ball. A player may execute a legal shot and choose to end their inning. If the shooting player is intending to both take a safety and pocket an object ball legally, he or she must make this known to the other player. If the safety is not called, and the shot is successful, the shooting player is required to remain at the table.

Coin Operated 8 Ball Scoring - The shooting player continues his or her inning at the table until a failure to legally pocket a ball from his or her group occurs. Once the player has legally pocketed their entire group of balls, he or she shoots to pocket the 8 ball.

Foul Penalties - When a foul is committed, the incoming player receives the cue ball in hand from anywhere on the table.

Combination Shots - In coin operated 8 Ball, combination shots are allowed so long as the 8 ball is not the first ball to be contacted unless it is the last ball remaining. If the 8 ball is contacted first when it is not the final ball, a foul is assessed.

Object Balls Jumped off the Coin Operated Table - A foul is assessed if a player causes an object ball to leave the table, and the incoming player's inning begins. If the 8 ball is jumped off of the table, a loss of game occurs. Jumped object balls are not respotted.

Cue Ball Fouls - In coin operated 8 Ball, no foul is assessed if stationary balls are accidentally touched while the shooting player is in the process of shooting. Should such contact occur, the shooting player shall inform the opponent of the incident. The opponent may then request that the misplaced ball be adjusted back to their original position, or that it be left as is.

Masse and Jump Shot Fouls - Coin operated 8 Ball, although played "cue ball fouls only," a foul will still be assessed if during a jump attempt, masse, or curve shot intended to "clear" a non-legal object ball, the impeding ball moves in any way. This includes movement caused by cue stick, bridge, or a hand.

Playing the 8 ball - In Coin operated 8 Ball, when the 8 ball is the legal object ball, a foul or scratch is not considered a loss of game if the 8 ball is jumped off of the table or not pocketed. In this case, the shooting player's inning comes to an end, and the incoming player receives ball in hand from anywhere on the table.

Loss of Game - In Coin operated 8 Ball, a loss of game occurs if a player:

  • pockets the 8 ball in any pocket other than the one designated by his or her call.
  • pockets the 8 ball on the same stroke as the last of his group.
  • fouls when pocketing the 8 ball.
  • pockets the 8 ball when it is not currently the legal object ball.
Those were the coin operated pool table 8 ball billiard rules.

Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules

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Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules History

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The official Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules are predominently observed in North America.

How to Play Coin Operated 8 Ball

Questions about Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules:

  • Title: Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules
  • Author: (Billiards Forum)
  • Published: 7/18/2007 5:31:32 PM

Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules

The Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules article belongs to the Pocket Billiards Rules category. Pocket billiards is a class of cue sport game commonly referred to as pool.

Coin Operated 8 Ball Rules Comments

  1. terrie4321terrie4321 from Fairbanks, AK on 10/20/2008 5:50:34 PM

    Your rules for coin-op 8-ball bar billiards say conflicting things: In the first paragraph below it says (in Playing the 8 Ball when it is a legal object ball):

    A foul or scratch in not considered a loss of game if the 8 ball is jumped off of the table...

    But below that paragraph it says

    It IS a loss of game...if a player [...] jumps the 8 ball off of the table at any time.

    The first paragraph below also says that a foul or scratch is not considered a loss of game if the 8 ball is jumped off of the table, but below that is says that it is a loss of game, if a player fouls when pocketing the 8 ball. A scratch, of course, is considered to be a foul.

    I'm confused. How can this be? Can you straighten me out on this?

    What I'm referring to is pasted below:

    Playing the 8 ball - In Coin operated 8 Ball, when the 8 ball is the legal object ball, a foul or scratch is not considered a loss of game if the 8 ball is jumped off of the table or not pocketed. In this case, the shooting player's inning comes to an end, and the incoming player receives ball in hand from anywhere on the table.

    Loss of Game - In Coin operated 8 Ball, a loss of game occurs if a player:

    • pockets the 8 ball in any pocket other than the one designated by his or her call.
    • pockets the 8 ball on the same stroke as the last of his group.
    • fouls when pocketing the 8 ball.
    • jumps the 8 ball off of the table at any time.
    • pockets the 8 ball when it is not currently the legal object ball.
  2. billiardsforumbilliardsforum from Halifax, NS on 10/21/2008 3:13:36 AM

    @Terrie - Good catch. IF the 8 ball is jumped off the table, we assess a foul, but do not enforce loss of game. This is purely in the interest of saving the player's money by ensuring the coin-op 8-ball game last as long as possible. I've corrected the rules and removed that item from the list. As such, the rest of the rule set now makes sense.

  3. Redneck JimRedneck Jim from Boise, ID on 4/20/2014 8:04:46 AM

    This statement in your article is in conflict with a later statement:

    Object Balls Jumped off the Coin Operated Table - A foul is assessed if a player causes an object ball to leave the table, and the incoming player's inning begins. If the 8 ball is jumped off of the table, a loss of game occurs. Jumped object balls are not re-spotted.

    This statement is contradicted later in the rules:

    In Coin operated 8 Ball, when the 8 ball is the legal object ball, a foul or scratch is not considered a loss of game if the 8 ball is jumped off of the table or not pocketed.

  4. billiardsforumbilliardsforum from Halifax, NS on 3/4/2019 10:32:13 AM

    @Redneck Jim - you are correct. Those two blurbs present a direct contradiction with respect to jumping the 8-ball off the table, and unfortunately I can no longer find the source document used to research this article on how to play coin-op 8 ball.

    However, I believe the first mention, the "loss of game" part is incorrect, because the goal of modified eight-ball rules for coin-op pool tables is to allow the game to continue where possible for as long as possible in order to save money. One of the ways to do this is to remove the automatic-loss-of-game rules in scenarios where the eight ball can still be accessed e.g. when it is shot off of the table.

    If anyone has an official source of 8-ball rules for coin-op tables, please let me know.

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