Tabletop Gaming and Card Nights Made Easy With Foam Table Pads

In a previous post, we discussed custom poker tables, and the benefits of foam in their construction: it makes gaming easier, more comfortable, and more accommodating. When you have the space, ability, and funds to create a dedicated gaming table, there is nothing better to play on.

However, spatial limitations can outweigh the ability to have a dedicated game table, no matter how fanatically or frequently some people enjoy their hobby. Fortunately, there is an alternative to a full-fledged game or card table that saves space and money, while helping you get the most out of your leisure time!

By applying a thin foam pad to any table, you can create a game surface that makes it easier to play, more comfortable to play, and is much more affordable than bringing an entire piece of furniture to your home. With a foam game pad, you can transform your kitchen into a poker lounge, or your dining room into a miniature tabletop gaming world!

Hexagonal table pad trimming diagram

Hexagonal table pad trimming diagram

A resilient but cushioning foam pad does more than make a table comfortable to sit at for an extended period of time, which is what most people think padding on these tables is for. The give of a firm foam surface aids in gameplay substantially, whether dice, cards, or miniatures are the focus. The best poker tables have a thin layer of cushion under the playing fabric for this exact reason – cards are much easier to pick up and play with when you can get your fingertips under them. A urethane-coated table can make picking up cards nigh-impossible, without having to slide them across the whole table surface to the edge. For a cheap deck of playing cards this doesn’t matter, but in trading card games, maintaining the condition of your deck is vital, especially since rare cards can be valuable.

A closed-cell-foam-padded surface makes plenty of sense for dice and miniature-model games as well. Thin sheet-foam can help keep more enthusiastic rolls of the dice from ricocheting off the table like they can on hard, wooden surfaces. These thin padding sheets are firm enough to allow easy rolling, but absorb enough energy to keep unpredictable, wild rolls from skidding off the table and disappearing – a big issue when you consider some games utilize unique, multi-faceted dice you can’t always replace with a backup if one disappears. And with delicate miniatures, accidentally dropping or knocking them over with a foam pad greatly reduces the chances of damage versus a hard, regular table.

An additional benny for dice games is the sound dampening foam offers. This may not seem like much of an issue, but depending on your living situation, it can be much appreciated. For late-night gaming in homes that are shared with roommates, spouses, or children, the click-clack clatter of dice all night can get irritating. A soft foam surface will render rolls nearly silent. While protecting others from noise, the pad also protects the table from damage, since it’s not a dedicated game surface. Scratches, chips, and scuffs can all add up after gaming for a while, and an affordable foam pad can handle that abuse easily.

To get your own padded, removable game surface, The Foam Factory offers three varieties of foam that are thin, firm, and cushioning; perfect for a gaming overlay. With cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE), neoprene, and polyethylene roll all offered in 1/4″ sheet thicknesses, and the XLPE and PE roll both available in 1/8” inch, you have the perfect materials to turn whatever surface you want into a game station.

Polyethylene roll table padding

Polyethylene roll table padding

Available in various sizes, you can buy a single sheet of foam that will easily cover longer, rectangular tables, as well as wider round tables. With neoprene’s largest sheet size being 80” x 48”, XLPE’s 72” x 48”, and PE roll available in 60” widths by the lineal foot, you can protect a substantial playing area. Smaller sizes are available as well, to save money padding smaller game surfaces.

The customization of these foam table pads is incredibly easy as well. In 1/8” and 1/4″ thicknesses, trimming closed-cell foam to size is a breeze. With a sharp, non-serrated blade and a safe cutting surface, you can slice through these foam sheets to perfectly match the dimensions of your table. Trimming to size prevents any tablecloth-style accidents where the pad gets pulled or yanked, upsetting the game. The Foam Factory even offers custom cutting services for a fee, should you be uncomfortable or unable to trim the material yourself, or have a table shape with a particularly unique cutting challenge.

Being closed-cell foam, these three materials are all non-absorbent, meaning they can be easily wiped down with a damp cloth as necessary. While spills may impact your game, they won’t hurt the foam at all. When you’re done playing, these foam types are all flexible enough to be easily rolled into a cylinder and stored away for the next game night! Neoprene is the most resilient of the three materials and will want to lie flat even after weeks of being stored in a roll, while the other two types will flatten out after a quick roll in the opposite direction to negate any residual curvature.

Simply put, the benefits for padding a game surface with closed-cell foam are substantial. It provides versatility, comfort, protection, and affordability, and most of all, a great way to enjoy games with friends and family.

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