Fireball Table worth it?

Tables to buy or sell / Table upgrades / Table parts, specifications etc.
jtayl0r
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2012 7:46 am
Real Name: Jonathan Taylor
Location: Ely, Cambs

Fireball Table worth it?

Post by jtayl0r » Sun Jan 01, 2012 4:36 pm

First, sorry if this question is posted elsewhere. I tried searching fireball tables and you can imagine how many threads pop up...

I havent been able to find much in the way of reviews for fireball tables. Most of what I have been able to find is from dealers talking about how amazing their product is. That is a bit too bias to draw any real conclusions from. Can anyone vouch for this table? I am not 100% set on a fireball, so please make any suggetions. I have read the rather impressive ebay buyers guide and while very helpful, I am looking to see how people like (or dislike) the Fireball ITSF Competition Table.

Here is a little about me and what I am looking for so maybe someone can give a rookie some help figuring out if this table is a good fit.

-I am an amature player (what do you mean you cant spin the little people all the way around? :wink: )

-I have an older garlando G-500 with telescoping rods at home that I really dont care for. It seems fragile and has very square feet, which seem to make it a bit harder to control. Not a bad table I suppose, but I just can't get used to it. It also doesnt have a smooth feel when moving the rods. Maybe I am just spoiled with the Tornado tables at work...

-There are 2 Tornado tourney tables at work that I really like, but I dont want to pay that much for a table at home.

-I want something that will last, but am trying to keep it under £800. If I drop £1000+ on a table my wife will probably beat me with it.

-Not going pro, just want to beat the socks off the guys at work.

User avatar
Oatsey
Posts: 2993
Joined: Sun Feb 16, 2003 8:08 pm
Real Name: Dave Oates
Location: Bristol

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Oatsey » Sun Jan 01, 2012 4:49 pm

Hi,

a Fireball is the next best table to a Tornado (IMHO) and cheaper new. They play in a similar manner and skills learned on one are easilly transferable to the other.

For £799 if that is your budget you can get either a new Fireball homeplay ITSF version or a v good second hand Tornado coin opp or for far less a used cyclone Tornado home play when one comes up on here or ebay.

Jon May who reads this board is a good place to get more info re specifics/possibilities.

By the way who is your employer , Yahoo?

User avatar
Simmo
Posts: 340
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2006 11:25 pm
Real Name: Simon Yeung
Location: Gloucester/ Birmingham

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Simmo » Sun Jan 01, 2012 5:27 pm

I'd recommend getting a Fireball as would a lot of people would. Its a brilliant table and is fit for all styles of play.

User avatar
Sampson
Posts: 368
Joined: Tue Sep 09, 2008 8:55 pm
Real Name: Luke Sampson
Location: Coventry

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Sampson » Sun Jan 01, 2012 6:39 pm

+1 for Fireball. If I had the money, I'd definitely buy one.

User avatar
Mase
Posts: 6587
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2005 11:49 am
Real Name: Ben Mason
Location: Bristol - UK

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Mase » Sun Jan 01, 2012 8:59 pm

The simple answer is that Tornado is the Rolls Royce of Foosball.

Fireball is good, very good. But if you want to get good to beat your mates then have a look at getting a Tornado.

I happen to know someone selling some really good condition second hand tables. PM for more information.

Regards,

Ben Mason

frogater
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:00 pm
Real Name: NONE GIVEN

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by frogater » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:03 am

Mase wrote:The simple answer is that Tornado is the Rolls Royce of Foosball.

Fireball is good, very good. But if you want to get good to beat your mates then have a look at getting a Tornado.

I happen to know someone selling some really good condition second hand tables. PM for more information.

Regards,

Ben Mason
Ben,
You are not going to be very popular with Boris and his Garlando followers in BFA Grand Lodge!
If Tornado is R/R of Foosball, then what would you equate Garlando with? Robin Reliant!!!! and what about the French C**P Bonzini or is it Belgian? a Lada perhaps?

User avatar
davez
Posts: 4072
Joined: Sun Jan 19, 2003 11:17 pm
Real Name: Dave Ziemann
Location: London, UK

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by davez » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:09 am

I agree with Mase. If you're not planning to go to tournaments and playing on tables that people compete on, then get a second-hand Tornado. They are so well built that you can expect a second hand Tornado to last longer than a new Garlando.
Apostrophes never make plurals.Incorrect:Table's,Garlando's,DVD's,1900's.Correct:Tables,Garlandos,DVDs,1900s.

jagiar
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:28 am
Real Name: jason

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by jagiar » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:59 am

davez wrote:I agree with Mase. If you're not planning to go to tournaments and playing on tables that people compete on, then get a second-hand Tornado. They are so well built that you can expect a second hand Tornado to last longer than a new Garlando.
Would have to disagree with this statement. I have both a Tornado (grey marble coin op) and a Garlando (WC). I find the Galrando, overall, better built than the Tornado.

I know I'm opening up a bee's hive here, but here goes...

All the yellow men on my Tornado have cracked. Not the black, just the yellow (hence, I suspect a problem in the dye used in the manufacture - which I have read many instances of on other forums as well). After just a couple of weeks of play one of the bushings has chipped. My Garlando? Nada. Still solid and in almost the same condition as when I bought it new almost five years ago. And I play it hard everyday (as opposed to the Tornado - which was mint when I got it - which I use occassionally). My Torando and Garlando are side-by-side by the way, so it's not an issue of moisture, etc.

There are also build issues with the Tornado that you don't get with the Garlando. 1) The Tornado is unnecessarily heavy - you won't move it very much) on your own. Garlandos are not as heavy and you still won't move the table to any considerable amount with hard play 2) The wooden handles on Tornados tend to have some 'play' on the rod i.e. they feel loose(due to the hole and pin design). 2) The bushings require oil if the table is not used often - far more often than lubrication is needed on a Garlando since Garlando's have internal bearings. 3) The goals have a habit of chipping 4) Men brake in the legs often (I don't think I've ever seen a Garlando player with a broken leg - a head, yes, but leg no). 5) Heaven help you if you accidently ever spill a drink on a Tornado. You might as well throw the table out because replacing the pitch is a b****h! Moreover, the whole table is built in MDF. We all know what happens to MDF when it gets introduced to water. Garlando's are built with plyboard, so no problem. The only board which would need replacing would be the chipboard underneath the glass pitch (easy to replace). That and an original green pitch card. Simple and cheap.

I'm not saying Garlando is perfect, but in terms of build, I can't see issues that merit Tornado having a better reputation than Garlando (please bear in mind, this review has nothing to do with play style). I will say this for Tornado though, the table isn't prone to a slight jar when the handle is pulled or pushed to the wall hard as much as a Garlando.

User avatar
Jonathan May
BFA Committee Observer
Posts: 3817
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2004 5:21 pm
Real Name: Jonathan May
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Jonathan May » Tue Jan 03, 2012 11:39 am

You haven't really disagreed with the statement, merely presented an alternative statement. Dave was talking about how long the tables last, not about how often parts need replacing.

What you say about spilling a drink is simply not true, Tornados can take drink spillages. Sure, please don't put a hose on it, but then don't do that to a Garlando either...

The other problems you list are a bit spurious - "the goals are prone to chipping" - umm, yes. Eventually. On tables of a certain age, if being played by people who repeatedly hit the post very hard. Simple trick: hit the goal, not the post. Did you know that Garlando rods are prone to rusting? Lol. Simple trick: don't get them wet.

It sounds like you got a defective bunch of yellow men, and the fact a bushing as cracked it also sounds like at some point the table has been stored in a very hot/dry/sunny environment (possibly even outside or in a conservatory), which isn't very good for the materials used in the table.

The wooden handles don't have play unless they are very old and overused, in which case, replace them! On a Garlando of similar age and use you'll often find the handles simply come off on their own - in which case, replace them!

Your comment about how often you need to lubricate bearings etc is a bit strange. I haven't noticed Tornados needing more lubrication than Garlandos in home or commercial settings. If this is the case for you, it's possible there's a lot of dust in the air where you play, so the Garlando bearing hold up better being less exposed to the air. But this isn't a normal problem.

Also, you've ignored all the other issues with Garlandos. Score counters break. Rods bend. Coin mechs jam. Ramps chip. Bearings break. Bumpers break or split. Springs (if no bumpers) change in their performance over time. Leg bolts lose their thread, feet lose their thread.

In a commercial setting, Tornados last longer, period. In a very specific home environment, it's possible that a Garlando might require fewer repairs than a Tornado, but the repairs are simple enough and cheap enough to make on both tables.

Perhaps it would be more accurate to say: "in my foos-room, my Garlando appears to be slightly better than my second-hand Tornado". ;-)
--
Manager, TeamGB.

User avatar
Jonathan May
BFA Committee Observer
Posts: 3817
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2004 5:21 pm
Real Name: Jonathan May
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Jonathan May » Tue Jan 03, 2012 11:45 am

Coming back to the original question: homeplay Fireballs are great tables, will last a while if looked after, and won't break the bank. If you had no intention of competing in tournaments, it would be a close call for me between a new Fireball homeplay table and a second-hand Tornado coin-op, which are likely to cost a similar amount (in fact, the second-hand Tornado might even be cheaper).
--
Manager, TeamGB.

jagiar
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:28 am
Real Name: jason

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by jagiar » Tue Jan 03, 2012 12:09 pm

Jonathan May wrote:You haven't really disagreed with the statement, merely presented an alternative statement. Dave was talking about how long the tables last, not about how often parts need replacing.

What you say about spilling a drink is simply not true, Tornados can take drink spillages. Sure, please don't put a hose on it, but then don't do that to a Garlando either...

The other problems you list are a bit spurious - "the goals are prone to chipping" - umm, yes. Eventually. On tables of a certain age, if being played by people who repeatedly hit the post very hard. Simple trick: hit the goal, not the post. Did you know that Garlando rods are prone to rusting? Lol. Simple trick: don't get them wet.

It sounds like you got a defective bunch of yellow men, and the fact a bushing as cracked it also sounds like at some point the table has been stored in a very hot/dry/sunny environment (possibly even outside or in a conservatory), which isn't very good for the materials used in the table.

The wooden handles don't have play unless they are very old and overused, in which case, replace them! On a Garlando of similar age and use you'll often find the handles simply come off on their own - in which case, replace them!

Your comment about how often you need to lubricate bearings etc is a bit strange. I haven't noticed Tornados needing more lubrication than Garlandos in home or commercial settings. If this is the case for you, it's possible there's a lot of dust in the air where you play, so the Garlando bearing hold up better being less exposed to the air. But this isn't a normal problem.

Also, you've ignored all the other issues with Garlandos. Score counters break. Rods bend. Coin mechs jam. Ramps chip. Bearings break. Bumpers break or split. Springs (if no bumpers) change in their performance over time. Leg bolts lose their thread, feet lose their thread.

In a commercial setting, Tornados last longer, period. In a very specific home environment, it's possible that a Garlando might require fewer repairs than a Tornado, but the repairs are simple enough and cheap enough to make on both tables.

Perhaps it would be more accurate to say: "in my foos-room, my Garlando appears to be slightly better than my second-hand Tornado". ;-)
Jonathan, with all due respect, what you've said makes little sense at all. If something is built to last, that necessarily means that the component parts are not meant to break. If they break, they didn't last. If you don't have working parts, the table isn't playable, and hence didn't last.

My Tornado has not been stored outside but inside in a well ventilated place. Regardless, if you read my post carefully I mentioned that the Garlando and Tornado are side by side, hence any conditions the Tornado is exposed to, the Garlando is also exposed to (and longer as I have had my Garlando longer).

The advice to "hit the goal, not the post"? Please don't be snide. That type of advice does not help anyone, escpecially a beginner who might be hitting the post more than a pro.

Moreover, I haven't experienced any of the faults with my Garlando that you're mentioning. (Broken counters??? -What exactly are you doing with them?). I can only comment on home and tournament (not commercial) use on both tables and I can assure you that the Garlando holds up better. Period. Moreover, I've seen Tornado's in pubs that are unplayable due to broken players, jammed coin mechs, etc. The only reason I've ever witnessed an unplayable Garlando is becasue of rusted rods (as you've mentioned) and broken coin mechs (rare). But rusted rods are due to lack of maintenance and not because the materials are not suitable for their intended purpose. I've never in 30 years of playing seen a broken Galrando foot. Ever.

User avatar
Jonathan May
BFA Committee Observer
Posts: 3817
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2004 5:21 pm
Real Name: Jonathan May
Location: London
Contact:

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Jonathan May » Tue Jan 03, 2012 12:21 pm

Without wishing to be patronising, your experience of both of these tables in commercial environments appears to be a bit limited. And when you are talking about tournament use, even more limited. Garlandos are a nightmare for "tournament use" compared to Tornados, as anyone involved in a BFA Garlando tournament in the past 10 years can testify.

Tornados are designed so that EVEN IF parts break (which they do rarely, except, it appears, on your table) they can be easily replaced and the table is good as new.

Anyway, not picking a fight, just think your own personal experience of tables might not quite be representative.

Finally, it wasn't meant as a snide comment, it was meant to emphasize that when you abuse any table in a certain way, you are likely to cause damage. It's like saying "Garlando rods are prone to bending" - they definitely are, but I wouldn't list this as a flaw, I would more say that that this is due to abuse.
--
Manager, TeamGB.

jagiar
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:28 am
Real Name: jason

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by jagiar » Tue Jan 03, 2012 12:37 pm

"Tornados are designed so that EVEN IF parts break (which they do rarely, except, it appears, on your table) they can be easily replaced and the table is good as new."

Here we are in total agreement - parts are easier to replace on Tornado. But if we are talking about 'normal' use and not abuse (which I think jtay had in mind in the original post) then certainly hitting the post hard would be considered normal (as in repetitive snaking to the ends of the goal as we all do in practice - what's the point of attempting to be a good player if not to do such things after all) as would loose handles, broken men, chipped bushings, while broken counters, i think you would agree, would verge on abuse.

Also, I think that if you've rarely seen broken parts on Tornados, then I think you must not have alot of Tornados available where you play. Try going to a few pubs/bars in the U.S. and Canada and try to find one INTACT. Most of them are on the verge of being unplayable.

User avatar
Oatsey
Posts: 2993
Joined: Sun Feb 16, 2003 8:08 pm
Real Name: Dave Oates
Location: Bristol

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Oatsey » Tue Jan 03, 2012 1:15 pm

Hi,

just to join in the debate. As many people will know I have until recently been operating Tornado (and other tables ) in various venues and in various parts of the country. I also have a Tornado cyclone at home which is used regularly (despite the state of my game!) and believe me I hit the post a lot with my long pull kick!

Some of the Tornados are in places which are heavilly used.

So from practical experience I can safely say that you must have a faulty set of men or something as whilst they do break occassionally it is only occassionally and only then usually when its played heavilly by experts. For example I have had a Tornado in a bowling alley/complex for 4 years and it has never had a man break or a bumper need replacing and indeed I have never even been called out to the table once inbetween emptying it once every 3 months when i checked , cleaned and lubed it and it took steady amounts of cash albeit not heavy use.
Other tables have had the odd pin break which is the most frequent problem and on some the odd man or bumper has gone (usually at the Rainbow!) but it is pretty infrequent and sometimes the screws come out of the goal and the metal plate slips until screwed back. All of these are very easilly fixed.
For you to have virtually a full set go already with occassional home use its definitely faulty men I would say.

None of the tables have developed a cracked goal post in over 4 years of use including at our local the crown / bush where it gets a good pummelling every week by us. I can only assume this is relatively rare too.

In terms of needing lube on the brushings I assume you just mean on the rods not the bumpers ? In which case they may well need lube a little bit more than a Garlando but i have never noticed it as significant myself. Certainly in this country apart from geoffs Tables if you go to a pub with a Garlando in you are lucky if you can move the rods much at all! Obv this is as most operators dont bother to lube them at all and it sounds like in the states and canada they often dont bother to maintain the Tornados either.

Garlandos are also generally well made tables and generally reliable even in commercial settings but IMHO not as well
made as a Tornado. The men do break less as moulded on I would agree but as Jon says they tend to get slightly different problems.

I think you must have a duff set of components or a weird style of play!!

frogater
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:00 pm
Real Name: NONE GIVEN

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by frogater » Tue Jan 03, 2012 2:08 pm

davez wrote:I agree with Mase. If you're not planning to go to tournaments and playing on tables that people compete on, then get a second-hand Tornado. They are so well built that you can expect a second hand Tornado to last longer than a new Garlando.
Dave, I'm pleased you agree with Ben. But I don't agree with you entirely. You as a senior pro master, who commands respect from all the players in UK and abroad should be more explicit with your assessment when comparings tables. You should be honest and unbiased which we all expect of you because you are the icon we all look up to. Its no good saying Tornados are "well built" or they "last longer than Garlandos" and playing in tournaments should NOT be the deciding factor, it only proves Tornados are better made (Lots of very good players don't go to bastardised tournaments because they don't like playing on rubbish tables). But thats not whole picture, you should also explain (without you and your BFA friend's prejudice) that the Tornados are million times better than Garlando and others when it comes to playing on a table. Tornado is the only table where the player is in control not the other way round! (only Fireball comes close to Tornado) Only drawback with Tornado is: you need skill to play on it, thats why lots of players decide to go for Garlando/Bonzini etc, etc.
Sorry if my comments upset some people, but then truth always hurts

Rob Davey
Posts: 1108
Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2006 4:36 pm
Real Name: Rob Davey
Location: Bristol

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Rob Davey » Tue Jan 03, 2012 2:19 pm

2 things from me.

Dave never goes long on the pull kick - maybe sprayed from the middle which is why he is hitting the post often - but never long so don't fall for his lies.

And secondly I had a flash back to sticky and mac just then. I thought this jason guy was gonna pick a fight with Jon (he tried several times) but Jon ducked out with his patronising and veiled sentances.

I think there is still life in this conversation and things could develop further.

Rob

jagiar
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:28 am
Real Name: jason

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by jagiar » Tue Jan 03, 2012 2:21 pm

frogater wrote:
davez wrote:I agree with Mase. If you're not planning to go to tournaments and playing on tables that people compete on, then get a second-hand Tornado. They are so well built that you can expect a second hand Tornado to last longer than a new Garlando.
Dave, I'm pleased you agree with Ben. But I don't agree with you entirely. You as a senior pro master, who commands respect from all the players in UK and abroad should be more explicit with your assessment when comparings tables. You should be honest and unbiased which we all expect of you because you are the icon we all look up to. Its no good saying Tornados are "well built" or they "last longer than Garlandos" and playing in tournaments should NOT be the deciding factor, it only proves Tornados are better made (Lots of very good players don't go to bastardised tournaments because they don't like playing on rubbish tables). But thats not whole picture, you should also explain (without you and your BFA friend's prejudice) that the Tornados are million times better than Garlando and others when it comes to playing on a table. Tornado is the only table where the player is in control not the other way round! (only Fireball comes close to Tornado) Only drawback with Tornado is: you need skill to play on it, thats why lots of players decide to go for Garlando/Bonzini etc, etc.
Sorry if my comments upset some people, but then truth always hurts
With your version of the truth, frogater, its a good thing you're not a supreme court judge. The currently ranked #1 and #3 in the world didn't get there by playing on tornado tables. In fact the majority of the current top ten players got there mainly on combinations of Garlando and Bonzini wins. Where are you ranked?

jagiar
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:28 am
Real Name: jason

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by jagiar » Tue Jan 03, 2012 2:29 pm

Rob Davey wrote:2 things from me.

Dave never goes long on the pull kick - maybe sprayed from the middle which is why he is hitting the post often - but never long so don't fall for his lies.

And secondly I had a flash back to sticky and mac just then. I thought this jason guy was gonna pick a fight with Jon (he tried several times) but Jon ducked out with his patronising and veiled sentances.

I think there is still life in this conversation and things could develop further.

Rob
Rob, I certainly don't want to pick a fight with anyone - especially over foosball tables. I accept that everyone has an opinion. John has his which is obviously based on his experiences. Mine is different. In the end, jtay benefits.

User avatar
Sampson
Posts: 368
Joined: Tue Sep 09, 2008 8:55 pm
Real Name: Luke Sampson
Location: Coventry

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Sampson » Tue Jan 03, 2012 3:04 pm

jagiar wrote:
Rob, I certainly don't want to pick a fight with anyone - especially over foosball tables. I accept that everyone has an opinion. John has his which is obviously based on his experiences. Mine is different. In the end, jtay benefits.
Jason, if you don't want to pick a fight with Mr. May, I'd suggest referring to him as Jon rather than John ;)

Just sayin'.

In all seriousness, even though I'm only ranked amateur, my opinion is Fireball > Tornado > Garlando. But that's only based on play rather than durability.

User avatar
Jude
Posts: 1159
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2004 5:19 pm
Real Name: Jude FitzGerald
Location: Dublin

Re: Fireball Table worth it?

Post by Jude » Tue Jan 03, 2012 3:10 pm

jagiar wrote: With your version of the truth, frogater, its a good thing you're not a supreme court judge. The currently ranked #1 and #3 in the world didn't get there by playing on tornado tables. In fact the majority of the current top ten players got there mainly on combinations of Garlando and Bonzini wins. Where are you ranked?
[/quote]

Oh dear! ... Kalsi, be good now...

Post Reply