top of page

How to Spread Sand on a Shuffleboard Table

Updated: Sep 25, 2023

Shuffleboard table with white text that says, "How to Spread Sand on a Shuffleboard Table."

Shuffleboard is an excellent addition to any game night. The rules are straightforward, yet there's enough room for competition to keep your family and friends entertained. Since shuffleboard's inception in 15th century England, it has become a firm favorite for many game enthusiasts.

You'll need to have some shuffleboard sand close by to get the most out of your game. Sprinkling shuffleboard sand — also known as shuffleboard wax or shuffleboard powder — on your board is essential to ensure the pucks glide down the table correctly. This silicone-based powder also helps preserve your board. In many ways, shuffleboard powder is the key to the longevity and maintenance of your shuffleboard table. Knowing how to set up a shuffleboard table makes your gameplay much more enjoyable.

A Guide to Spreading Sand on a Shuffleboard Table

Setting up your table affects your game, so it's worth the extra time to get it perfect. Luckily, spreading sand on your shuffleboard table is quick and straightforward once you've got the hang of it. Follow these easy steps for the ideal shuffleboard maintenance and setup:

Step 1: Clear the Table

The first step is to clean your board property and prepare it for gameplay. Keep an eye out for pucks not sliding across the board as effortlessly as before, as this is a sign your table needs cleaning and maintenance.

Classic, quality shuffleboard tables are made of treated wood, which requires regular maintenance to prevent wear and tear that could affect your game. To keep the surface of your table clean and avoid scratching, wipe your table down thoroughly with a specially designed board wipe or warm water and vinegar.

Take extra care to remove all dirt and grime from the table's surface for the best glide during gameplay. Vacuum the table's edges to ensure you haven't left any old powder or buildup behind.

Step 2: Lubricate Your Board

Once your board is clean and dry, it's time to add the lubricant. First, wax your table with furniture wax to seal and treat the wood. Leave it for a few minutes, then buff it with a towel or soft cloth until your table is smooth and shining.

Add a layer of silicone-based spray to seal the wax and keep your pucks sliding across the table with ease. Use a silicone-based spray explicitly designed for shuffleboard tables, as more generic versions may be too slick and could even damage your shuffleboard's surface. Spray an even coating of lubricant over the entire surface of your shuffleboard table. Use long, sweeping motions when you spray and ensure you don't miss any spots.

Once you've coated the table, please leave it to stand for a few minutes, then buff away the excess with a soft cloth.

Step 3: Sprinkle the Sand

Now it's time to learn how to spread sand on a shuffleboard table. The type of shuffleboard powder you use and how you distribute it directly affects the speed and play of your game, so take a little extra time with this step. Too much powder will clump and slow the pucks down, so sprinkle your shuffleboard powder evenly to avoid buildup.

An even coating is vital here. If you need to, spread the powder with your fingers to avoid a lumpy finish. You may have to add more powder during your game, so apply an even coating each time. Vacuum the extra powder buildup out of the edges for a clean look before your guests arrive.

At the end of the game, remove all the sand from your table. Old shuffleboard powder collects dust and grime, which can slow down the surface considerably for your next game. Grab a damp cloth and wipe it away. Ensure your table is completely dry and well-lubricated before adding more powder or it will clump up before you've even played.

Step 4: Test the Surface

Toss a puck down your shuffleboard table to see if you're happy with your powder application. The puck should glide down the table effortlessly. If you've used too much powder, the pucks will plow through and leave visible marks. If you've used too little, your pucks won't glide with the same speed.

You may notice that some areas have different powder coatings than others by the movement of your puck. Testing your entire surface is an excellent way to tell whether you've applied an even powder coating. If you notice any of the above signs, you can always add more powder to the necessary areas or wipe off a thick layer, let your board dry and try again.

Once you're satisfied, you can start playing. It's normal for shuffleboard powder to end up in the gulleys of your table during a game. You can always pick some up and sprinkle it on parts of your board during the game. You're only allowed one full coat of powder per game in a tournament, so sprinkling the powder from the gully is an excellent way to keep those pucks sliding smoothly.

How to Choose Shuffleboard Powder

The shuffleboard sand you choose will directly impact your game's speed, so it's best to know how to choose shuffleboard sand that will suit your game. Your choice of powder also depends on the length of your table. The fastest shuffleboard powders are made of pure silicone beads but work best on long tables, as the puck needs to travel further and benefits from the least resistance.

Shorter tables benefit from slower powders, where manufacturers add ground corn or similar material to give players more control over their pucks. Shuffleboard powders are numbered from one to seven in terms of speed, with one being the fastest. Number one powders are often used for professional gameplay on full-size tables. In contrast, number seven powders provide maximum resistance and control for smaller tables but may interrupt the play on larger ones.

Everyone has their unique style of play, and there's a shuffleboard powder to suit every game. Try experimenting with different types of powder until you find the perfect one for you and your table. You can even mix powders if you like. Always have a few different powders ready to spice up your game.

Get Ready to Play With HB Home

Now you've set up your table. You're ready to play. You can apply your shuffleboard powder when you need to, and remember to grab powder from the gully mid-game to keep your pucks running smoothly.

Shuffleboard is the perfect addition to any games night — it's fun, easy to follow and full of laughs. HB Home has all the quality you need if you're looking for the ideal shuffleboard or want to add accessories to your existing setup. Our fun, beautiful and functional furniture will add hours of value to your games room. Each of our gorgeous shuffleboard tables comes with all the necessities and grants you hours of fun with your loved ones. Please get in touch with our team for more information on the ideal addition to your games room today.

15,488 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page