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daviddjmp
04-12-2004, 12:58 PM
Before I call Ray or Tony, I wanted to know if any one had an idea of what their basic cue costs, or if anyone has ever hit with one. Information on them is pretty scarce, a little in the BB of Cues 2nd edition. I just wanted to know if their basic cue is in the ballpark before I call them.

Thanks for any input-

Cheap9Ball
04-12-2004, 04:16 PM
I play with one that is about 15 years old or so, and I love it. This was a time when they had a production catalog, so while they were still handmade, they were not one-of-a-kind. I have run into the same issue as you regarding the lack of information that is available.

daviddjmp
04-13-2004, 09:41 AM
Since there is really no info out there about them,(there are some good pictures at www.ilovecues.com (http://www.ilovecues.com)) I just called Maryland and talked to Tony. He said their "basic" cue is 8 ebony points in Birdseye Maple, ivory joint, butt cap and ferrules, and that the handle is one piece of solid wood. He also told me that the points are deep knife cuts that are important to the playability of the cue. He says his goal is to make a cue that plays better than anything on the market. Price was high, but not completely out of reach if I decide to own one of their cues. Grady Matthews and Allen Hopkins play with one, anyone have either of their numbers? /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Barbara
04-13-2004, 09:59 AM
Oh yeah, Allen has a really pretty Black Boar cue with a light blue suede wrap.

Carol and I know this cue! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Barbara /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Vicki
04-13-2004, 11:36 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Barbara:</font><hr> Oh yeah, Allen has a really pretty Black Boar cue with a light blue suede wrap.

Carol and I know this cue! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Barbara /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif <hr /></blockquote>

Guess ya gotta be on the inside /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

daviddjmp
04-13-2004, 11:52 AM
I missed this one too. Barbara-

Have you or Carol ever hit with the Black Boar?

Anonamus
04-13-2004, 12:16 PM
I know a guy that collects Black Boars and I have been down to talk to Tony about getting one of the collector's cues appraised. (BTW, I didn't end up buying it.) I thought it odd that Tony said his basic design used an ivory joint. Out of all the BB's I've seen and played with only one had an ivory joint, the rest were stainless steel. He likes to use SS because it helps give that forward weighted feel he builds into all of his cues.

I would assume that the reason he uses one solid piece for the nose, handle and butt is because, like he said, the nose is already maple and everyone uses maple as the handle already so why splice two pieces of maple? I wonder if you requested an ebony nose if he would still use one solid piece? Probably not because it would be too heavy.

I also know that besides being forward weighted cues he does beautiful inlay work and leather wraps, builds a thin handle (much like a Schon) and "builds a certain amount of flex in his cues". In other words, his shafts are thin and the opposite of stiff. His philosophy is that you don't need to hit the ball hard to move it around the table, instead you should stroke the ball, or in my words, spin the ball around the table. He also tries to match the resonance in the shaft and butt. He feels the better musical instruments are superior because the tonal characteristics of the woods used are matched and he tries to do this with his cues. He also does not like layered tips and uses a gauge to check the hardness of the Triangle tips he uses. He throws half of them away until he finds the tips that are soft.

I think you will be happy with his work butI would request a stiff shaft.

daviddjmp
04-13-2004, 12:30 PM
Thanks very much for that input. If I remember, he uses an Ivory cover over stainless steel so the appearance is Ivory. He said the balance thing is all done with the type of wood, and he makes just about everything with Ebony points cut into maple, using no screws in the butt for balance. I like a stiff hitting cue, so I would definitely ask for that in the shaft as you suggest. I really would like your (or the collector you know)opinion of the way the cue feels, hits and sounds if possible. Thanks again-

Wally_in_Cincy
04-13-2004, 12:52 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Vicki:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote Barbara:</font><hr> Oh yeah, Allen has a really pretty Black Boar cue with a light blue suede wrap.

Carol and I know this cue! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Barbara /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif <hr /></blockquote>

Guess ya gotta be on the inside /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif <hr /></blockquote>

Vicki,

Barbara forgot to mail you your CCB/NEWT secret decoder ring.

Wally~~also wonders what the heck Barbara and Carol were doing with that cue /ccboard/images/graemlins/confused.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/crazy.gif

Barbara
04-13-2004, 01:00 PM
This goes back to the Expo Staff Party 5 years ago.

This was the first time I had worked the Tournament desk and by the time it was over, we were pretty much wiped out. The staff party wasn't going to start until around 8 pm, but Colleen and I decided to start earlier. Needless to say, we were a "couple up" on mostly everybody else.

After we had gotten something to eat, Colleen and I proceed to grab one of the Valley tables and play some BCA regulation 8-ball. We're getting a little silly, but having lots of fun. Unfortunately, we drew Allen's attention to all the fun we were having.

This is when Allen decides to come over to our table and challenge. But first, he has to show us this brand new Black Boar that Tony had just given him. "Isn't it a pretty cue?" Allen's saying, "It's just a pretty cue.". That kind of stuff. And yeah, it's a damn pretty cue.

So Allen wants to play and we decide we have to handicap him. Whatever group Allen gets, he has to run in rotation.
He wipes me out so now it's Colleen's turn. Allen breaks and doesn't make a ball. Colleen gets up and runs the table. But during Colleen's run, Allen's not paying attention because he's showing everyone around him his new pretty cue. Colleen sits down and Allen turns around and sees he's been beaten. That look on his face was priceless. Colleen (and we are just about sh*t-faced now) just non-chalantly says, "Rack 'em, Allen. And don't worry, it's still a pretty cue." That whole side of the room just lost it and I couldn't make another ball the next game and packed it in after that.

It was definitely one of those, you had to be there!!/ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Barbara

daviddjmp
04-13-2004, 01:06 PM
Barbara-

Thanks for that, what a great story!

Anonamus
04-13-2004, 01:36 PM
I've played with about 6 or 7 of them for hours at a time. Each one is different but they are all fairly similar, if that makes sense. They all have a hard solid hit because of the ivory ferrule, but the cue absorbs the vibration nicely giving you a nice subtle feel in the butt hand. I can feel the differences but have a hard time putting it into words. To me it's like playing with a scapel, the thin butt with the forward weight and the small diameter tip allows you to hit the CB precisely and effortlessly move the weight through the CB. You have to hit the CB closer to the center than you would with other cues or you will apply too much english. The difference between different BB's is how well the cue slices through the CB. They all do it well, but some just feel a little better. I have no idea why?

It's balanced well and it absorbs the hit well but it doesn't play like a stiff cue. Tony makes a 1st class cue and the hit is going to be as good as any other 1st rate pilot jointed cue. If you can get him to make the shaft the way you want it may give you the feel you're looking for.

Sorry I can't describe it any better than that.

daviddjmp
04-13-2004, 02:37 PM
Ed-

You described it very well, and I appreciate it a lot. No one around here has ever hit with one, so your feedback is invaluable-

Vicki
04-13-2004, 06:54 PM
Very funny story Barbara... I can just see the look on Allen's face!

By the way, Mike Capone shared the the bag of Nuts you gave him. I thought I might miss out this year and only get a handfull of Ted's but I got a roll. Thanks a million!

Vicki

Chris Cass
04-14-2004, 08:32 AM
Hi Ed,

I've heard that a maple handle can warp easy and cuemakers that use a laminated handle don't have any problems as far a warpage in that part of the cue.

Regards,

C.C.

Anonamus
04-14-2004, 10:33 AM
Thanks Chris!

I haven't heard of a laminated handle being used but then again, I don't know very much about cue making.

SUPERSTAR
04-15-2004, 12:48 PM
Hi there.
I myself have 3 Black boars. 2 were second hand, and 1 was built specifically for me by Tony around 4 years ago.
Back then, the basic cue which was 6 ebony points over a birseye forearm, leather or linen wrap, and ebony buttcap...with a stainless steel joint + 2 shafts with ivory ferrules was going for $1500. It used to be $1200 before that....and i believe has since gone up to $1800 although i'm not sure.
Best way to find out would be to call him up and ask him what he wants for a basic cue like the one i described.

The extra shafts used to be $200, but have since gone up to $300.
They are by far the best playing cues i have ever had. Especially the one that was built to my specs. It was a no brainer, and from the first stroke felt like an actual limb from my body. It blended with me perfectly.
In regards to the shaft thickness. I have 12mm tips, and the fact of the matter is....they are not whippy at all. Tony chose some VERY tight grained wood which allowed me to have the thin shafts i wanted without the flex that i didn't want. They are not like meucci's. Totally different world.
I would recommend them to everyone who is serious about PLAYING pool. If you want something to have on a shelf, your really waisting a quality product, but for a player.
It's like heaven.
If your not used to the hit (which is very specific to black boars probably due to the construction method) it might take a little while to get used to, but when you do.
You'll know that when you miss, it has absolutely nothing to do with the cue.....unlike some other cues that bend the ball out of the shots.
and he IS into the harmonics of the wood. every wood has a characteristic vibration that comes out as a tone.
if you go get a bunch of house cues off the wall, and bounce the butts on the floor (hopefully they don't have rubber stoppers) they will sound different. Some will sound high like pings...and yet others will sound much deeper. What Tony does is he tries to find woods that sound alike. This means that they vibrate at the same frequency...so that when you put them together..say shaft and butt...that they will vibrate the same and play like one piece of wood.
One of my cues has an ivory sleeve over steel and the other is just steel for the joint. NEITHER cue plays the way you think a steel jointed cue is supposed to play.
They actually play much...."fluffier" than the typical CLANK you'd expect from some cuemakers.
They have tons of feel and feedback.
As far ass i'm concerned you can't go wrong. They may be pricey, but the way i look at it....the one cue i had made for me...is the last cue i'm ever gonna play with.

any other questions?

SUPERSTAR

daviddjmp
04-15-2004, 01:02 PM
SS-

That is great feedback. I called to actually place the order today, but got his answering machine. I am a musician, so I really understand the resonance factor of Violin, Guitar and Piano soundboards, materials construction, etc. I am definitely looking for the hit. He quoted me $2800 for his basic full splice 8 point ebony in birdseye cue with leather wrap, two shafts. I wonder if I will be able to have some input into the design (total weight, shaft size, type of wrap, total length, etc.) as I know he wants to make cues pretty much his way and that is why I am going to him. I would also like him to stain the birdseye gray for me.

One question I do have, did you visit him in person to get the specs you wanted when you had the custom made?

Thanks very much for your feedback-

SUPERSTAR
04-15-2004, 01:23 PM
Well...my relationship with Tony has spanned like 12 years.
It started when i bought one of his cues second hand and took it to him to get refinished. Then i ended up snatching up another one and i had shafts made for that one....So after adjusting to both cues. I took a break from pool for a while, and when i decided to return...i figured i might as well do it right and designed my own cue and presented him with my ideas. I only live a few hours away, and just hopped in the car to go to his shop. I gave him my ideas as to what i wanted and the weight and balance and shaft weight and such so that he had some perspective of what i wanted. He also knows how i play and based on my stroke....we decided on a balance point that would suit me and my game according to my grip. I would say i had lots of input into the construction of the cue...some of it he'd agree with some of it he didn't but we'd compare notes and come to an agreement.
I'm probably in a better position than most cause i've been dealing with him for so long. You on the other hand...are from CA? So it's gonna be more of a hope and pray situation since your not gonna be hands on while he's actually working on it.

If you have any ideas as to what you might want...shaft weight, balance, taper,length, or whatever. I recommend that you tell him EVERYTHING. Your paying the money so you should be satisfied with what it is your paying for.
When you go to his shop...his purchase form has all that info....weight....length...then he sketches a design and you guys go back and forth with ideas till you get it right.
Yes he can be stubborn, but ultimately he's gonna want you to be happy with what you get.

SUPERSTAR

daviddjmp
04-15-2004, 02:45 PM
Thanks again. Is there any way I could mention your name next time I talked to him letting him know that I communicated at length with you? If so, send me a private message letting me know. It might carry some weight and allow me to get a little more customization over the phone. You have been extremely helpful-

bigalerickson
04-15-2004, 03:29 PM
I am looking for some contact information for these guys, after seeing some of their pictures. oh man... sounds like it would be one great cue!

If anyonne knows how to get ahold of them, please PM me, or email me.

Alex

Pelican
04-16-2004, 12:02 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote daviddjmp:</font><hr>
Grady Mathews and Allen Hopkins play with one, anyone have either of their numbers? /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif <hr /></blockquote>
Grady actually plays with a Bludworth now.

He will be revealing his newest Bludworth at his Gulf Coast Classic tournament in Dec. It's valued at $35,000. It should be "real pretty".

ted harris
04-17-2004, 02:20 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote daviddjmp:</font><hr> SS-

That is great feedback. I called to actually place the order today, but got his answering machine. I am a musician, so I really understand the resonance factor of Violin, Guitar and Piano soundboards, materials construction, etc. I am definitely looking for the hit. He quoted me $2800 for his basic full splice 8 point ebony in birdseye cue with leather wrap, two shafts. I wonder if I will be able to have some input into the design (total weight, shaft size, type of wrap, total length, etc.) as I know he wants to make cues pretty much his way and that is why I am going to him. I would also like him to stain the birdseye gray for me. <hr /></blockquote>
I think you can forget the grey stain!

daviddjmp
04-18-2004, 02:03 PM
Absolutely correct! How did you know? No gray stain, but that is ok. I trust his recommendations-

ted harris
04-18-2004, 02:17 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote daviddjmp:</font><hr> Absolutely correct! How did you know? No gray stain, but that is ok. I trust his recommendations- <hr /></blockquote>
Stains are for crappy wood! You won't find any of that in his cues, or mine.