Choosing the right model Sjoelbak can be a bit of a struggle for some people.
Both the foldable and traditional boards have distinct advantages.
The traditional boards are my personal favorite. It is what I grew up with and in my mind it is how the board is supposed to look. It is also less expensive (I am very Dutch!).
Both the Heemskerk and Schilte traditional are durable, well constructed boards. The differences between them are very subtle and mostly cosmetic. Schilte does satisfy one unique requirement that the ANS (Dutch Sjoelbak League) has. The connections (which are tonque and groove) are glued and nailed together. Heemskerk Sport uses screws for the connections. This makes Schilte the only sjoelbak that the ANS permits for their tournament and World Cup events.
For those of you who want to take your Sjoelbak places, I would not hesitate to recommend the Foldable models. They are easier to fit in the back of your car and store nicely in a motor home.
Many people are concerned about the seam of the foldable board interfering with the game. This however is not the case. In building the foldable models our manufacturers start out with a finished traditional board, cut it in half (for the perfect fit) and then add the hinges. The boards are adjusted in such a way that the half of the board that is closest to your body when playing is a fraction of an inch higher than the second half. This assures that the pucks always slide perfectly. Only when you are sliding the pucks so hard that they bounce back can you sometimes hear that there is a seam.
Playing the pucks so hard that they bounce back very far is never a good playing strategy though. In that respect the seam is a good warning; you are sliding your pucks too fast!
Storing the foldable board can in some cases be easier but the traditional model fits nicely up against the wall in a coat closet or behind a bedroom door . To me the best place is just up against the wall in the corner of my dining room. The wood is pleasant to look at and it keeps the board easily accessible at all times.
Whether you choose one of our foldable or traditional models, all boards are built well, play well and will give you years and years of sjoelen fun!
Jacqueline van den Akker