Question: Cup holder rings in rail

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
Hi there to everyone!

So I've begun a build. Raised rail, 92X44 and I'm about to cut the holes for the cup holders and right after upholster the rail. But I came across some cup holder rings that until recently, I'd never heard of. Now...I fully understand the concept behind them...they prevent sagging in the foam, should you forego these rings, much like the sample pic provided.

That's great and all..I'm for them. The issue lies when considering tightly upholstering the rail. I've read where Chanman and BG suggest compressing the foam with a knee while the foam is glued to the plywood rail and laying it upside down, in order to get the tightest pull on the vinyl when upholstering. Well...don't those rings sort of hinder the compressing of the foam when those rings are in the way?

When upholstering the rail on the floor upside-down, the cup holder rings stick out higher than the foam, the rings would thus elevate the foam from the floor.What, theoretically, happens is the only compression happening at this point is only the vinyl to the top of the rings

How is this issue resolved?
 

Attachments

Trihonda

4 of a Kind
Moderator
Joined
Aug 23, 2013
Messages
7,105
Reaction score
6,567
Location
Wisconsin
Oh brother, here we go again. Lol.

No in all seriousness, there is a huge debate about the cupholders in the rail, slide under cupholders (prob not an option for a raised rail), or simply using drink carts. There are many that like cupholders in the rail, and many that don't. There are pros and cons for both sides of the debate. I personally fall into the no cupholders camp. And of the numerous tables I have built, I have never done cupholders on the rail. I have installed cupholders dozens of Drink carts that Ive fabricated.

If you're set On cupholders in the rail, I will refrain from further comment. And tony can possibly lend some advice about your questions.

If you are still undecided, and interested in hearing both sides of the debate, there are numerous threads debating the issue, you might want to look at the pros and cons and see which side of the debate you fall into.
 

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
@Trihonda , lol.... sorry man, not trying to have you guys beat a dead horse. Trust me, I've weighed that option and have read the countless threads on that topic in all the poker message boards....yes all of them... we all know which those are. I, too, feel that either option has its place. However, this doesn't deal with that dilemma. It's actually only in reference to the rings that support the cup holders.

In my build, I'm opting for the cup holders in the rail for aesthetics, using the brass ones as I think it'll look pretty snazzy, adding a lil bling. I don't however wish for dips to happen, which is where these new "rings" that support the cup holders come into play.

I'm worried that when upholstering, with the rings glued to the top of the rail ply, it'll hinder the ability to compress the foam, thus not allowing the tightest upholstery. So I'm wondering how is it that you're able to compress the rail foam when pulling on the vinyl as tightly as possible while those rings are in the way.

I can't help but feel that with those "rings" being 3/4" thick, the foam would only be compressed only a 1/4" when pulling the vinyl as much as possible before stapling.

Maybe I'm not explaining myself correctly. :confused: I'll see if I can snap a pic tonight to better illustrate the problem. I've seen others use these rings and yet their rails have turned out looking fantastic. So there is a way.... I'm just not understanding fully how that is achieved.
 
Last edited:

Trihonda

4 of a Kind
Moderator
Joined
Aug 23, 2013
Messages
7,105
Reaction score
6,567
Location
Wisconsin
RAF, if you're set on cupholders in the rail, and you've done the research, then obv that is what will work best for you. I do like the looks and convenience.

Id definitely wait to hear back from Chan On the correct way to do this. However if my memory serves me correctly, I think folks have stretched the vinyl over the foam first, then insert the rings after cutting the hole in the vinyl. The holes in the foam and wood get cut prior to upholstery. But I could be wrong. Best of luck. Lots of pics please
 

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
RAF, if you're set on cupholders in the rail, and you've done the research, then obv that is what will work best for you. I do like the looks and convenience.

Id definitely wait to hear back from Chan On the correct way to do this. However if my memory serves me correctly, I think folks have stretched the vinyl over the foam first, then insert the rings after cutting the hole in the vinyl. The holes in the foam and wood get cut prior to upholstery. But I could be wrong. Best of luck. Lots of pics please
The highlighted part is probably the ticket. Thanks, Trihonda.
 

Trihonda

4 of a Kind
Moderator
Joined
Aug 23, 2013
Messages
7,105
Reaction score
6,567
Location
Wisconsin
Yup. But I seem to recall folks inserting/gluing them into place after the vinyl was installed. Chan would know better.

The vinyl will stretch and allow the bigger rings to be inserted after the fact. But as someone who hasn't ever built a table using these rings, my memory should not be trusted.
 

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
Alright... I'll wait and see if he or Irish can chime in.

Side question for you @Trihonda... Forgetting about those rings for a moment...

Do you use the same method of upholstering the rail on the floor and compressing the foam with say the pressure of a knee on the rail ply to achieve the tightest finished rail?
 

BGinGA

Royal Flush
Tourney Director
Joined
Oct 29, 2014
Messages
16,877
Reaction score
18,713
Location
Atlanta
Can't help ya here. If you are putting holders in the rail, definitely use the rings to improve the finished product. But since I don't, I got nothin'......
 

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
@BGinGA ... Fair enough. By chance, however, do you happen to know, even if only a guesstimate, how much the 1" rail foam is compressed when upholstering it? Is the goal to compress it entirely, if possible, or only about half way (maybe to 1/2") and go ahead and staple the vinyl down? Trying to get any idea of just how much is too much or vice versa....how little is too little...

Thanks!
 

BGinGA

Royal Flush
Tourney Director
Joined
Oct 29, 2014
Messages
16,877
Reaction score
18,713
Location
Atlanta
I would think that knee/foot compression is still your best bet. I'd compress on both sides of each holder, stretch and staple.
 

Trihonda

4 of a Kind
Moderator
Joined
Aug 23, 2013
Messages
7,105
Reaction score
6,567
Location
Wisconsin
I would think that knee/foot compression is still your best bet. I'd compress on both sides of each holder, stretch and staple.
and staple... and staple... and staple. Highly suggest investing in a pneumatic stapler. Honestly, I think I put around 2,000 staples in each rail I've done.

The trick is uniformity. Whether it's tight or semi tight, it's gotta be the same. Having one section tight, and one section super tight will result in waves/wrinkles, etc... To get uniformity, I look for having the vinyl and underlying foam to have the same look with each pull. Hard to describe, but the vinyl will stretch and squish the foam as you pull. Once you achieve the same squished-ness, staple away (a few to hold it in place at first). Once you've completed the rail, and it's satisfactory, then go around the border and plaster it with staples.
 

Irish

Flush
Joined
Jul 29, 2013
Messages
1,403
Reaction score
2,065
Location
NJ
Each builder has their own subtle construction nuances and preferences, especially when it comes to wrapping the rail. Assuming you're using a good, dense HD foam (i.e. not the crappy green foam from Joann's), you're not going to see a tremendous amount of compression on the foam in it's final state. The amount of compression varies along the cross section of the rail, probably from 1/2" at the edges to 1/4" or less at the top. As you mentioned, some builders will kneel on the rail as they're upholstering to compress the foam, that's to get a good stretch on the vinyl when it's released. Once you release it, the vinyl will stretch and the foam rebounds so the vinyl is nice and tight without any wrinkles. The goal isn't to completely squash the foam so it doesn't have any give. Personally, I don't kneel on the rail when I do my upholstering, but I'm a pretty big guy so I have no problem getting a good tight stretch without compressing the foam manually. The key to a nicely upholstered railed isn't necessarily pulling the bejesus out of it, but rather making sure you're pulling uniformly all the way around.

One thing to keep in mind - you're building a poker table, not a turbine engine. ;) There are a lot of great tips and tricks around, but don't kill yourself stressing out about getting it perfect. They're really not that hard to build, especially if you're already familiar and handy with tools. Take your time, measure twice - cut once, and you'll be fine. (y) :thumbsup:
 

RowdyRawhide

Full House
Joined
Nov 4, 2014
Messages
3,052
Reaction score
2,629
Location
Kansas
From what I can recall the Rings should be glued in place on the rail plywood and the foam cut around it PRIOR to installing the vinyl. After vinyl is installed then cut an "X" in the vinyl slightly smaller than the hole because the cup holder will stretch it as it slides down and leave a clean look
 

Irish

Flush
Joined
Jul 29, 2013
Messages
1,403
Reaction score
2,065
Location
NJ
^^^ I've found that's the easiest way to do it, glue the ring to the rail, foam it, cut the foam around the inner diameter of the ring and stretch it around the outer diameter of the ring, then wrap the vinyl. After you're all done stapling, cut the X as stated above.
 

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
Awesome! That uniformity bit is something I might have read before many times but has just now hit home. Got ya! That explains a lot and makes complete sense!. Thanks fellas!

You have no idea how grateful I am toward all of you. I think I'm finally ready to upholster this thing. I've been so intimidated by this stage that only now after your input on that uniformity bit do I feel ready to slay the dragon, so to speak. :cool:
 

mummel

Full House
Joined
Mar 30, 2016
Messages
3,018
Reaction score
1,024
Location
USA
I have cup holders in the rail and they work and look great. I really like them with one caveat. They need to be deep and narrow to just fit a beer can or bottle. If you have the wider ones for whiskey glasses etc, you'll have beers spill on your table. Its happened a couple of times where someone stands up to clear a pot and slams the bottle, but because the holders are narrow and deep, the beer can't topple. I have had ZERO spills on my table (touch wood). If you want to use whiskey glasses, then I think go with carts.
 

Irish

Flush
Joined
Jul 29, 2013
Messages
1,403
Reaction score
2,065
Location
NJ
Have a bottle of Advil (or several beers/bourbons) on hand for when you finish :whistle: :whistling: ;)
 

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
@mummel agreed....I bought a used 60" round that I refelted which came with jumbo cup holders and have had those experiences with regular beer bottles due to too much play when sitting in them. This time, going with standard cup holders in the rail. The fit is much more snug.

I bought another used one, octagon, which didn't come with any cup holder in the rail. We use the slide unders and that's when I was able to notice the much better performance with standard cup holders versus jumbo.

Can't say I've experienced a single tip over/spill using standard size.
 

Stylin

Pair
Joined
Nov 29, 2015
Messages
158
Reaction score
98
Location
Allentown, PA
^^^ I've found that's the easiest way to do it, glue the ring to the rail, foam it, cut the foam around the inner diameter of the ring and stretch it around the outer diameter of the ring, then wrap the vinyl. After you're all done stapling, cut the X as stated above.
This is the way to go.
 

T_Chan

Full House
Site Vendor
Joined
Apr 25, 2013
Messages
2,586
Reaction score
5,239
Location
Vancouver
Irish nailed it. I don't have much to add. Kneeling on the foam will compress it a little but not so much that the cup holder rings will interfere. I've done both ways where the cup holder rings were installed before upholster and after and don't really have a preference. Each have their pros and cons. I don't use them anymore myself since I get my CNC to cut the holes to the exact size of the cup holders so that it's a very snug fit and I don't get sunken cup holders.
 

72o

Full House
Joined
Nov 6, 2014
Messages
3,479
Reaction score
4,156
Location
MA
Irish nailed it. I don't have much to add. Kneeling on the foam will compress it a little but not so much that the cup holder rings will interfere. I've done both ways where the cup holder rings were installed before upholster and after and don't really have a preference. Each have their pros and cons. I don't use them anymore myself since I get my CNC to cut the holes to the exact size of the cup holders so that it's a very snug fit and I don't get sunken cup holders.
Hey Tony...so are you saying what you do now is cut the holes for the cupholders smaller so they don't slide all the way down and compress the foam?
 

T_Chan

Full House
Site Vendor
Joined
Apr 25, 2013
Messages
2,586
Reaction score
5,239
Location
Vancouver
Yes. I cut the hole in the vinyl, slide the cup holder down with quite a lot of force so that it stays put after I'm done shoving it in the hole. I push it down so that the lip of the cup holder sits flush with the vinyl and not lower. If you keep pushing it would go all the way down and get the indented foam look but you would have to shove it in really far and hard.

No cup holder rings:

2017-02-09 12.49.11.jpg
 

lnlver

Two Pair
Joined
Dec 12, 2013
Messages
447
Reaction score
382
Location
Level 42
I have only built one table, but after that, I wasn't able to stand up straight for 3 days. I don't know how Tony makes all those tables. His back must be stronger than Atlas's.

Seconds on having a full bottle of a good whiskey around after completion.
 

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
Thanks T_Chan for your input. Yours and everyone else that's shared you all's experiences through the years have been invaluable in helping myself and tons others in building.

Still not completely finished, missing a custom art vinyl for the inner riser & adding the mini rail at the dealer spot... But she still looks good as is. Didn't go with custom cloth for now. Wanted to build first, get the exact dimensions and win some money to order a custom cloth. Plus, I haven't completely settled on a final design so the terra cotta velvet speed cloth will have to do for the time being.

 

Irish

Flush
Joined
Jul 29, 2013
Messages
1,403
Reaction score
2,065
Location
NJ
See, I told you it wasn't hard ;)

Great job, the rail came out really nice. Best of luck winning some big pots on it!
 

Raf

Sitting Out
Joined
Feb 25, 2015
Messages
39
Reaction score
40
Location
Houston
Thanks Irish for the compliment and the vote of confidence
 

Aaron

Two Pair
Joined
Jul 27, 2015
Messages
326
Reaction score
181
Location
Oregon
Is there a build thread for this rail? I want exactly this for my existing table
 
Top Bottom