OFFICIAL TEST OF ROYAL PRO BILLIARD CLOTH, FROM FIBIS (Italian Billiard Federation)
I take my hat of, to the Italian Federation, for these amazing and surprisingly unexpected kind of tests.
FIBIS should be an example to ALL other federations, and proved that the criteria to recognize and homologate a billiard cloth, is not of how high is the amount of sponsorship.
The tests lasted 6 months, made by a chemical engineer of the state and was played by some authorized players every week, who had also to make their report every week.
By the way, also other known brands where parallel tested.

Royal Pro Tests and Homologation.
To homologate a cloth two kinds of test are carried on: objective and subjective tests.
Both kinds of tests must accomplish to the following requirements: regularity of geometry, constant rolling of balls, chromatic contrast, chromatic and physical unalterability; it is extimated that these requirements must be tested on a long period such as 500 hours of playing.
Objective tests:
1- Index of rolling at various slate temperature, (fastness).
2- Test of alteration by chemical aggression.
3- Resistance and reaction to a short and intense hot.
4- Resistance to traction.
5- Resistance to relaxation / yielding,
6- Refractory to H2O and to dirty.
7- Regularity of the weave (warp and weft).
8- Releasing of materials or pilling.

Subjective tests:
9- Conformity of classical systems at various temperatures.
10- Conformity of cushions rebounds
11- Evaluation of contrast and chromaticity.
1- Index of rolling (fastness): This is obtained with an inclined instruments where you put the ball and leave it roll, it is measured by diamonds at various temperature and monitoring also the environmental humidity. The threshold is >70. The result was always >78, also with temperature less than 30° C. Test result is POSITIVE.
This test has been also made with the slate heating turned completely off for 1 week; temperature was 20° – 22°. Rolling index has decreased 5%. Test result is POSITIVE, even with heating off at environmental temperature.

2- Test of alteration by chemical aggression.
Often it happens that cloths are cleaned with chemical products; to simulate this situations cloth has been immersed in:
ACIDO ACETICO (CH3COOH, weak organic acid, 80% conc.)
ACIDO CLORIDRICO (HCl, strong inorganic acid, 33% conc.)
TETRACLORURO ETILENE 4Cl2C (solvent)

Test has been made in times of 15 min, 1h, 6h, 12h, 24h, 48h, 5 days.
RP didn’t had any deterioration when submerged in ACIDO CLORIDRICO as totally synthetic; it lost very few color when submerged in ACIDO ACETICO, meaning it does not contain Silicon; with TETRACLORURO there hasn’t been any reaction, the cloth didn’t lost any color. Test result is POSITIVE.
3- Resistance and reaction to a short and intense hot.
This test is made because the rolling of balls can cause intense heating on the cloth. The simulation is made with drops of Pb+Sn at 200°-230°. Autocombustion is also tested with a soldering iron for 2 seconds (800° C circa). Test result is POSITIVE.

4- Resistance to traction.
This test checks the possibility of installing the cloth using the maximum pulling strength, without having future yielding, maximum tension can be evaluated. Small different stripes had been cut and put under progressive and controlled traction. The results has shown that cloth can bear a traction higher than the traction any human operator could use. Test result is POSITIVE.

5- Resistance to relaxation / yielding; this test the possibility that, after the installation, the cloth could yield, creating different reaction of balls in different zones. Evaluation has been sampled until 48h. Maximum yielding, from starting position in 48h with 14kgf has been 10.65mm. This means that the linear traction used in the installation remains uniform over time, nor creating local yielding. Yielding is measured as 3.6% that is widely acceptable. Test result is POSITIVE.

6- Refractory to H2O and to dirty. This test measures how much time a drop of H2O stays in the spherical conditions with no capillarity absorption. It took 10 minutes. Dirty has also been tested pouring a strawberry liquor, a fruit juice and motor oil on the cloth, and leaving there for 15 minutes. After this, the cloth is cleaned with PERCLOROETILENE evaluating the stain ring and the halo remaining. Test result is POSITIVE.

7- Regularity of the weave (warp and weft).
The test is made with a X5 lens, looking for irregularities. Test result is POSITIVE.

8- Releasing of materials or pilling.
This test is made checking the quantity of material lost during vacuum cleaning, this material is found inside the vacuum. Materials was not present. Test result is POSITIVE.

Subjective tests:
Players of various skill had been asked a comment:
“trajectories are normal, after few hours cloth settled down giving linearity in short to short shots (5-pins)”
“rolling is regular, slightly faster than a wool cloth”
“for some frontal shots, English must be a little stronger”
“a mild sliding typical of new cloth is still evidently present also after 100hrs of playing”
“differences to geometric trajectories are quite null”
“massè shot can be realized with less strength, obtaining more precision”
“rotation of ball remains more constant during all the trajectory, until the end of the shot; we see it specially in bricoles and garuffa (carre).”

I 11- Evaluation of contrast and chromaticity.
This test is very personal. Players have been asked to evaluate the clearness of ball contours, in contrast with the cloth color. They had to choose between a green and a blue cloth on the background.
Two comments had been quite unanimous:
“the blue, after several hours of playing, is more relaxing for eyes”
“ball contours are easier to see on a blue background”
An instrumental test is impossible but answers suggest that a blue background gives more clearness to contours, making the aiming easier.
Blue colors have a wave length lower than green colors and this helps retina receptors, making the viewing operation less heavy for our eyes, especially in long distance playing (3 hours).

CONCLUSIONS:
Tests shown that RP has the requirements for playing.
The statement from the producer testify materials used are approved by law.
As RP requires less temperature to operate, it is particularly suitable in particular situations where there is no time to get the heating at a proper temperature or for example in schools of “School Project” where often the heating is not available or not immediately.
Energy saving is therefore an important issue; it can be estimated a saving of more than 30% in energy compared to cloth with hydrophilic components.
The results show that RP cloth can be used at ambient temperature, with no heating and with no alteration in the playability, making it a suitable choice for location where is difficult to set up a proper energy line.
For all these reason we consider the RP cloth suitable and can be omologated for all the specialty of international billiard.
12 April 2016
The Italian Billiard Federation (FIBIS)
Centre for Studies and Technique
MAURO LANZA