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Jay
05-22-2004, 02:38 PM
Has anyone ever owned or used one of the numerous bootleg Instroke leather cases on ebay??? I was thinking of buying a 2x2 to have when I just feel like messing around instead of bringing my regular case. Do you think they are worth it? Im not looking for a replacement case but just an extra

Popcorn
05-22-2004, 03:19 PM
I just use a plain soft zipper case, around $20.00. I have had a couple of fancier cases but haven't used one in years. I don't want to be baby-sitting a $300. case when I am playing pool. If I can't just toss it under the table without worrying about it, I can't be bothered. I think you have the right idea. As far as the cases on ebay, I would not call them knock off''s. They don't say Instroke on them do they and the price is cheap. Instroke in the beginning was a knock off it's self of the Justis case, which was a knock off of the Flowers case. You have to go back to Jay Flowers to find an original idea in the bunch, they are all copycats.

brian_
05-23-2004, 02:08 AM
I'll let you know what I think of mine when it gets here, should be here in a week or so. I bought a red and black 2X4 to resale. They look like pretty good cases specially for the money.

Predator314
05-23-2004, 10:02 AM
I own one of these cases and I like them. They aren't as indestructible as an Instroke, but they hold up very well. I have had mine for 3 years and it's been thoroughly used and still looks perfect. Mine is a 2x4 Vincitore case.

I also sell these cases on eBay. They are a great value. You can buy 4 or 5 of them for the price of 1 Instroke case.

tateuts
05-23-2004, 10:25 AM
Jay,

I've seen a couple. Here is the style I don't like:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=21211&item=3677829 877&rd=1

Notice the interior compartment. The inside is a foam injected molded core instead of tubes. You put the cue in joint down, or tip down on the shafts. The problem is, they don't fit all all cues well. Some are way too tight others too loose - so they drop down the hole too far and wedge in there.

This Bentley type here is much better - tubes and felt:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=21211&item=3678795 032&rd=1

This particlar Bentley is actually a copy of a Whitten, not an Instroke. This seller is excellent. He also has a cowboy style Bentley too in almost any color combo, around $100 depending on size.

Chris

JohnBarton
05-23-2004, 10:47 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> I just use a plain soft zipper case, around $20.00. I have had a couple of fancier cases but haven't used one in years. I don't want to be baby-sitting a $300. case when I am playing pool. If I can't just toss it under the table without worrying about it, I can't be bothered. I think you have the right idea. As far as the cases on ebay, I would not call them knock off''s. They don't say Instroke on them do they and the price is cheap. Instroke in the beginning was a knock off it's self of the Justis case, which was a knock off of the Flowers case. You have to go back to Jay Flowers to find an original idea in the bunch, they are all copycats. <hr /></blockquote>


This is not true. Instroke in the beginning was an improvement over all at that time existing tube cases in function and was a radical departure in looks.

I started building the cases that became Instroke out of a real need in my opinion to have a case that was definably protective. The only thing that was "copied" from the Flowers case that I owned at the time was the use of plumbing tubes. (full story at www.instroke.com (http://www.instroke.com))

Saying that Instrokes are a copy of Flowers and Justis is like saying that a Ferrari is a copy of and Edsel.

As for tossing it under the table, this is exactly what the Instroke is built for. I toss mine under the table, in the backseat, in the corner and never worry about whether the case or the cues inside them will get damaged. As I mentioned in a thread on AZ Billiards, I consider the Instroke to be the Hummer of cases.

Here is the answer to the original question as to whether the Instroke knockoffs are worth anything. This past week at the BCA Nationals I repaired about 80 cases, mostly replacing Instroke latches and latches on other cases. With the cases apart it was painfully obvious to the consumer that the knockoffs were pure junk compared to the Instrokes. I spent a week educating those watching as to WHY Instroke is well worth the money and WHY the knockoffs are a waste of money AND very likely to damage the cues they purport to protect.

Before you go off on the latches - the latch issue has been a problem for ALL manufacturers who have used this type of latch and more so for the knockoffs who just don't care about trying to strengthen it. Now Instroke has sloved the problem by inventing a new latch designed especially for cue cases. This latch is in the shape of a diamond and it counterbalances against itself to relieve the vertiacal stress that comes with supporting 5-10lbs of cues and case.

I put on over 40 of these latches last week and the owner could not be happier.

So, no in my experienced opinion, the copies of Instroke are not worth anything. Invest a little more and get an Instroke or some other case which has earned a reputation for dependable quality and protection. In the long run this will pay off far more than the fleeting joy of a low price.

I do not make one dime off of Instroke. This post is only to correct the statement made by Popcorn and for historical accuracy.

John

Predator314
05-23-2004, 11:01 AM
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&amp;item=3675173678&amp;sspagename= STRK%3AMESE%3AIT&amp;rd=1

This is the style I have.

tateuts
05-23-2004, 12:10 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> Instroke in the beginning was a knock off it's self of the Justis case, which was a knock off of the Flowers case. You have to go back to Jay Flowers to find an original idea in the bunch, they are all copycats. <hr /></blockquote>

That's funny you should say that. I agree the early Justis cases were similar to Jay Flowers but Justis evolved into completely his own look.

I don't know the exact history of Jay Flowers, but I figure Dennis Swift must have worked for them - his cases are almost identical to one of Flowers' design.

I agree that I think Flowers invented what is today the "cowboy" style - here's the old example: http://www.billiardcue.com/Cases/images/C011Flowers.jpg

Notice the stap and handle combo? Looks like everyone copied that one.

Chris

Popcorn
05-23-2004, 12:58 PM
I don't know, your cases looked almost exactly like the Justis and Flowers cases right from the beginning, coincidence?. Regardless, It is easy to say just throw your case under the table, but people that have paid $300. and more a case can be fanatical about it. I saw one, I think a Justis, have a beer spilled on it when it was leaning against a bar and the owner freaked out to the point he forfeited in the tournament. He even thought maybe the room owners insurance would pay for it. The problem is, the type of people that these cases seem to appeal to, are the same type of people who lose sleep if it get the smallest scratch on it. They don't just see it as a tool. They need a second cheap case they can just take to league and not worry so much about. I like nice stuff too, but I don't take a new $600. camera to the beach, I take the old camera I don't care about and won't feel bad if something was to happen to it. There is no doubt your cases are far superior to the imports, but for $59.00 who cares and they serve the function and they are not going to totally fall a part in a week. You have to be honest, they are pretty good for the money, I would not think twice about buying one for every day use. The market for a $59.00 case may be hundreds of times bigger then for a $390.00 case.

Quote John

"So, no in my experienced opinion, the copies of Instroke are not worth anything. Invest a little more "

Invest a little more, you can buy half a dozen of those case for the price on one Instroke. They are not bad cases and well worth the price and then some, you are just not willing to admit it. I am sure there are plenty of owners on here that have had the cases for years and are very happy with them.

JohnBarton
05-23-2004, 03:04 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote tateuts:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> Instroke in the beginning was a knock off it's self of the Justis case, which was a knock off of the Flowers case. You have to go back to Jay Flowers to find an original idea in the bunch, they are all copycats. <hr /></blockquote>

That's funny you should say that. I agree the early Justis cases were similar to Jay Flowers but Justis evolved into completely his own look.

I don't know the exact history of Jay Flowers, but I figure Dennis Swift must have worked for them - his cases are almost identical to one of Flowers' design.

I agree that I think Flowers invented what is today the "cowboy" style - here's the old example: http://www.billiardcue.com/Cases/images/C011Flowers.jpg

Notice the stap and handle combo? Looks like everyone copied that one.

Chris <hr /></blockquote>

The scalloped design of the Instroke "Cowboy" model was made from a collaboration by a German, Peter Hackbarth, and myself. The strap/handle compbo was indeed borrowed from my old Jay Flowers case because we felt like this was the one that best complimented the design.

The Cowboy model however did not come out until we started mass production. Before that every Instroke was a one of a kind.

We are getting off track however. Where the Instroke departs from Flowers and every other tube case is the interior protection. This is where the Instroke outshines all others and is the reason I started building cases in the first place.

And this is really what the question is about. In my opinion if you are going to buy a tube case then you should know what is in the tubes. Two days ago I opened up a customer's knockoff so he could see the foam interior crumbling and disintegrating into the cavities where his cue was stored. (don't worry, I fixed it)

Anyway, buy a knockoff and get ripped off. Yes, Popcorn, the soft cases are fine, there are other cases that are fine. I loved my McDermott soft case and used it for ten years. Still though it is NOT inconcievable that some of us prefer to house our cues in something a little more protective. I guarantee you that in the event that your soft case bounces down the stairs at Chris's that your cue will sustain more damage than if it is in an Instroke tube case.

John

JohnBarton
05-23-2004, 03:31 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> I don't know, your cases looked almost exactly like the Justis and Flowers cases right from the beginning, coincidence?. Regardless, It is easy to say just throw your case under the table, but people that have paid $300. and more a case can be fanatical about it. I saw one, I think a Justis, have a beer spilled on it when it was leaning against a bar and the owner freaked out to the point he forfeited in the tournament. He even thought maybe the room owners insurance would pay for it. The problem is, the type of people that these cases seem to appeal to, are the same type of people who lose sleep if it get the smallest scratch on it. They don't just see it as a tool. They need a second cheap case they can just take to league and not worry so much about. I like nice stuff too, but I don't take a new $600. camera to the beach, I take the old camera I don't care about and won't feel bad if something was to happen to it. There is no doubt your cases are far superior to the imports, but for $59.00 who cares and they serve the function and they are not going to totally fall a part in a week. You have to be honest, they are pretty good for the money, I would not think twice about buying one for every day use. The market for a $59.00 case may be hundreds of times bigger then for a $390.00 case.

Quote


Right from the beginning the Instroke case looked nothing like a Flowers or Justis. In the beginning they looked more like a Porper if they looked like anything else at all.

Only with the Cowboy models did the cases start to look like the Flowers style but even then they had improved features.

John

Popcorn
05-23-2004, 04:22 PM
You are, I am sure right, the first were more like a copy of the Porper, I stand corrected.

Jay
05-23-2004, 04:47 PM
I know that these cases are probably not the best constructed cases in comparison to Instroke but the price that you can get them for makes them in my opinion a great deal. Instrokes are probably one of the best made cases out there but on a price to price comparison, the ebay cases win bar none for the particular situation. Im just looking for a backup case, a throw around case that I probably wont care about anything happening to it. Now if I were to spend the money on getting an Instroke instead I would be too concerned about something happening to it and that would defeat the purpose of a throw around case. It would probably end up being my regular case. My intentions of starting the thread was not to make the ebay cases look better than they are but rather finding out how they are. I am a firm believer of "you get what you pay for" but Im just trying to find out what Im paying for first!

pooltchr
05-24-2004, 06:52 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Jay:</font><hr> I know that these cases are probably not the best constructed cases in comparison to Instroke but the price that you can get them for makes them in my opinion a great deal. Instrokes are probably one of the best made cases out there but on a price to price comparison, the ebay cases win bar none for the particular situation. Im just looking for a backup case, a throw around case that I probably wont care about anything happening to it. Now if I were to spend the money on getting an Instroke instead I would be too concerned about something happening to it and that would defeat the purpose of a throw around case. It would probably end up being my regular case. My intentions of starting the thread was not to make the ebay cases look better than they are but rather finding out how they are. I am a firm believer of "you get what you pay for" but Im just trying to find out what Im paying for first! <hr /></blockquote>

I think John's point is that a case is purchased for one primary reason...protect the cues it carries. If that is the reason for buying a case, you want the best protection you can get. I have one case to carry my cues. It is an instroke, and I like it a lot. If it gets a scratch on it, I like it more, because that's one scratch that didn't end up on my cue! Besides, that just adds character to the case. I also don't plan on having to replace my case for a long time. I know the quality means it's going to hold up.

As for having a back-up case, I just don't see it. My cues stay in my case, and when I'm going out to play, I don't want to decide which case I'm taking, and switch cues from one case to another. (My wife does that with pocketbooks and it drive me NUTS /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif) I just want to grab my case and go.

Yes, the Instroke cost more than others, but I know if I do have a problem with it, there is someone standing behind it. That's why I don't mind paying a little more.

Popcorn
05-24-2004, 04:27 PM
I know you are trying to make an argument for why you bought one of those cases. But half these people play in bar leagues with Meucci cues and Cuetec cues and the such. One of those $50. or $60. cases will protect their cue just fine. My favorite case I have is an old American Vinyl that holds three butts and six shafts. Very practical case and looks nice and conservative. I don't need a case with my name on it in 2 inch letters, what is that all about.

JohnBarton
05-24-2004, 05:04 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Jay:</font><hr> I know that these cases are probably not the best constructed cases in comparison to Instroke but the price that you can get them for makes them in my opinion a great deal. Instrokes are probably one of the best made cases out there but on a price to price comparison, the ebay cases win bar none for the particular situation. Im just looking for a backup case, a throw around case that I probably wont care about anything happening to it. Now if I were to spend the money on getting an Instroke instead I would be too concerned about something happening to it and that would defeat the purpose of a throw around case. It would probably end up being my regular case. My intentions of starting the thread was not to make the ebay cases look better than they are but rather finding out how they are. I am a firm believer of "you get what you pay for" but Im just trying to find out what Im paying for first! <hr /></blockquote>

I told you what you are paying for. You are right, if you compare ONLY price then the knockoff wins. I can send you a plastic bag for FREE if you just want a barrier between your cue and everything else.

Here is the real comparison though. What if I handed you a black plastic bag for your cue with a fur lining and a black plastic bag with a sandpaper lining? Which would you prefer regardless of price? What if the fur lined one was 4 times the price? Would you use the sandpaper lined one at any price? What if you could not see what either case is lined with? If both looked exactly the same from the outside and you had no way of checking the interior would you go with the cheaper one?

This is the gimmick that the knockoff makers and resellers rely on. They know that you have almost no way to see what the interior is made of and so they depend on hype, outright lies and low prices to seperate you from your money.

For a cheap case and cheap cues the knockoffs are decent protection - the cue will have to be refinished sometime anyway and the cuemaker who gets the job will certainly be appreciative that you chose a case which expedites the poor condition of the cue.

I hope that adequately answers your question.

John

JohnBarton
05-24-2004, 05:30 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> I know you are trying to make an argument for why you bought one of those cases. But half these people play in bar leagues with Meucci cues and Cuetec cues and the such. One of those $50. or $60. cases will protect their cue just fine. My favorite case I have is an old American Vinyl that holds three butts and six shafts. Very practical case and looks nice and conservative. I don't need a case with my name on it in 2 inch letters, what is that all about. <hr /></blockquote>


ABsolutely correct. The case and the protection it offers are certainly linked to the value of the cue and what level of protection the owner wants for his/her equipment.

The question was whether the Instroke knockoffs are worth the money and in my opinon, as one who has taken apart more of the knockoffs and more Instroke case than any other person on Earth, is that no they are not worth the money. They are not worth $5 or $500. The reason they are not worth anything is because the way all of them are constructed makes them harmul to the cue at worst and incredibly shoddy at best. I would advise anyone to buy another type of case rather than waste their money on an Instroke knockoff. Whether you believe me or not, the Instroke style case is hard to right and very easy to do wrong. There are several key points which need to be done correctly in order to make a case that will protect and hold up over time. Every knockoff I have ever dissected fails miserably on these points.

My unique, one of a kind Joss cue got a really nice long scratch when I made the mistake of putting the cue into one of the knockoffs and the bottom wood piece came off and the cue slid out the bottom through the four nails sticking through the leather. I have the pictures, the case and the witnesses to prove it. From the outside this case lokks like a well built, solid leather case but in reality it is a shoddily constructed danger. I bought it at a show for $50 retail to see how well it was built.

And that is all I have to say on that subject. Instroke cases can be had for less than $100 to over $500 with NO COMPROMISE in protection. Knockoffs can be had for $50 to $500 with every imaginable type of idiotic and stupid method of construction.

I would be willing to bet that I could show you a knockoff of the AVP case that you would NOT want to carry your cue in. From the outside you would agree that it looks and awful lot like the AVP but upon closer inspection and use you would be forced to agree that the case is a piece of crap.

As to the point of why someone gets a personalized case; decorating weaponry is as old as combat. It takes all kinds of people to make a world work. I have seen people with $30 soft cases who decorate them to suit their personal taste. I have seen just last week two people with high dollar leather cases who have them plastered with brightly colored stickers. That is just some people's personality just like yours is to be more nondescript.

John

Popcorn
05-24-2004, 05:43 PM
I will stand corrected, if what you say is true then the buyer needs to be careful. I will bow to your experty (is that a word).

Jay
05-24-2004, 10:39 PM
John,
undeniably you are one who knows more about cases than anyone on these boards and my intention is not to argue with you. I completely agree with the fact that Instroke cases are one of the best made cases out there but I would also like to say that the ebay cases are probably in my opinion not as bad as you say they are. Of course when people bring their cases to you there is obviously something wrong with them because you are the repair man, but you also have to think about all those out there as few as there are that dont have a problem. Im sure that there are probably a few instrokes that may have problems but none the less you are right. And I appreciate your expert opinion. In all honesty I will probably purchase one anyways because I would like to experience them first hand. Cheaply made products never lose their appeal because of their low prices. And besides the knockoff will only make me appreciate my future Instroke even more!

SPetty
05-25-2004, 06:33 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> I don't need a case with my name on it in 2 inch letters, what is that all about. <hr /></blockquote>Theft prevention, probably.

JohnBarton
05-25-2004, 07:43 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Jay:</font><hr> John,
undeniably you are one who knows more about cases than anyone on these boards and my intention is not to argue with you. I completely agree with the fact that Instroke cases are one of the best made cases out there but I would also like to say that the ebay cases are probably in my opinion not as bad as you say they are. Of course when people bring their cases to you there is obviously something wrong with them because you are the repair man, but you also have to think about all those out there as few as there are that dont have a problem. Im sure that there are probably a few instrokes that may have problems but none the less you are right. And I appreciate your expert opinion. In all honesty I will probably purchase one anyways because I would like to experience them first hand. Cheaply made products never lose their appeal because of their low prices. And besides the knockoff will only make me appreciate my future Instroke even more! <hr /></blockquote>

That's fine. When I get a knockoff to repair there is something visible wrong with it. What I show the customer is the things they can't see that are wrong with the case. Most people don't care and continue using it anyway.

You will probably be well served with the knockoff. Most people don't really care whether a case harms their cue structurally or aesthetically anyway. Most people just care that the case looks good to them. I have known this for 14 years and my efforts won't change it.

John

glau
05-25-2004, 11:31 AM
I purchased a cowboy style 2X4 case that had a zipper tag with the word "Crystal" on it. No other brand markings. I got it for about $200 retail at a billiards supply dealer. He said it was an import but would last a long time. I have had it two years with no problems. The inside is similar to the Porper design and feels pretty solid. I carry my Richard Chudy custom cue and Helmstetter Balabushka in it and haven't noticed any damage to my cues as a result.

brian_
05-26-2004, 12:03 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote tateuts:</font><hr>
This Bentley type here is much better - tubes and felt:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&amp;category=21211&amp;item=3678795 032&amp;rd=1

<hr /></blockquote>

The inside looks alot like this case

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&amp;item=3678548546

So maybe they have stopped using the injected foam, or it's only used in certain cases. Thankfully the one I bought is that same 2 tone color so hopefully it'll be the kind with the tubes and felt like the Bentley.

John can you explain the different between say a Bentley and an Instroke case protection wise? Because to the average guy, that's never taken a case apart, they look alot alike. If you've covered it before and don't want to go thru it all again let me know and I'll do a search for it. Just curious to what the differents really are.

Thanks

JohnBarton
05-26-2004, 04:38 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote brian_:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote tateuts:</font><hr>
John can you explain the different between say a Bentley and an Instroke case protection wise? Because to the average guy, that's never taken a case apart, they look alot alike. If you've covered it before and don't want to go thru it all again let me know and I'll do a search for it. Just curious to what the differents really are.

Thanks <hr /></blockquote>


Sure. Let me start with the way the Instroke is constructed. Instroke case start out with each tube. The tubes carefully cut and all rough edges sanded smooth. Then high quality foam rubber is glued inside the tubes at the top and bottom. Then the special moisture resistant fabric is carefully sewn to insure there are no snags or knots anywhere along the liner. The liner is carefully placed in the tube and secured on both ends. Then high density foam rubber is placed in the end of the tube (think of the foam rubber on the soles of your tennis shoes). The end of the tube is then sealed so that it forms a barrier against moisture. Then the builder must put his/her full weight on the tube to insure there is no way for a cue to break down the seal on the end. The tube is them tested again to make sure that cues do not hang in the tubes and to make sure that the cues stay in when the tube is turned upside down.

Then the tubes are secured to each other in a specific way to insure that they cannot move. This forms the interior unit. This provides good protection against sideways impact since any blow is spread out over the whole unit rather than a loose tube.

Now the entire unit is covered with foam rubber to fill the space between the exterior shell and the tube unit. This foam rubber also provides an additional insulation barrier and additional protection against impact and helps the exterior withstand abrasion.

The tube unit is then securely placed into the shell and the bottom is glued to the endcap. The endcap is secured with special nails created by Instroke which are barbed from the tip to the head.

This is the short version of how the Instroke is constructed internally.

Where the Bently/Vincintore differs signifigantly is the type of tubing used, the preparation of the tubes, the fabric used, the quality of foam used, the way the tubes are put together and most importantly the way the ends of the tubes are treated.

The first thing is that the Bently tubes are lined with a much weaker fabric than the Instroke. The lining is loose and poorly sewn so that in some places the seam is seperated. There are often hard knots where the thread jammed and the sewer just went back and sewed over the bad spot rather than taking the bunched up thread out and starting over. The fabric is then cursorily attached to the tubing and the tubes are all put together in what seems to be the obvious way, i.e. a 2x4 has six tubes that are all held together and taped in one move. What this does is create a bunch of tubes that want to move when pressure is applied and do so. There is no foam rubber surrounding the tubes, free space is filled with loose pieces of cardboard. The foam rubber inside the tubes and surrounding the top of the case is a poor quality which disintegrates rapidly (there are about 25 grades of foam rubber - some will crumble within days of being made and some will last a million years - guess which one Instroke uses) (This is why people have Instroke cases with seven years of wear on the exterior with the interior as fresh as day one.)

Lastly the tubes are not sealed in any way on the Bently/Vincintore. They are stuffed into the shell and then a poor quality piece of foam rubber (think cotton candy) is glued to a piece of chipboard and this is then held in by normal paneling nails. So the only thing holding your cue from the floor are eight paneling nails. This is what happened to my Joss. In a brand new case it went right through and slid along those paneling nails until it hit the floor.

Sure, the Bently/Vincintore case can LOOK great. I have seen some that made me drool with envy at the leather used or the exterior design. Knowing how they are made however I wouldn't use them for any cue.

I hope that this answers your questions. Anyone attending the VNEA nationals who has a Bently/Vincintore can feel free to come by the Sterling/Instroke booth and have their case dissected and put back together to see exactly what I have described here and they can compare to a dissected Instroke.

John Barton

brian_
05-27-2004, 01:18 AM
Thank you John,
That's exactly what I was looking for quailty and construction for both. I understand totally about the grades of foam as I've seen cheap foam come apart plenty of times in various things.

I only have one thing in the Instroke cases that I think would make for a little better case in the extreme long run, using screws in the bottom of the case instead of nails. Sure it may take a good worker 15secs extra but then there would be no way for the bottom to come loose like the cheap case did to you. Even if all the screws started working loose at the same time, not likely, the owner would hopefully see the bottom of his case getting alittle loose before it falls off. That's just my 2cents tho.

JohnBarton
05-27-2004, 05:02 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote brian_:</font><hr> Thank you John,
That's exactly what I was looking for quailty and construction for both. I understand totally about the grades of foam as I've seen cheap foam come apart plenty of times in various things.

I only have one thing in the Instroke cases that I think would make for a little better case in the extreme long run, using screws in the bottom of the case instead of nails. Sure it may take a good worker 15secs extra but then there would be no way for the bottom to come loose like the cheap case did to you. Even if all the screws started working loose at the same time, not likely, the owner would hopefully see the bottom of his case getting alittle loose before it falls off. That's just my 2cents tho. <hr /></blockquote>

As far as the current Instroke goes, the custom nails with the way the bottom is sealed makes for a pretty tight fit. Some sort of screw system would be better. I had actually experimented with a way to have one inset screw/nut combination on the bottom for easy access. But so far nothing has come of it - maybe on the next incarnation of John Barton cases.

John ;-)

pooltchr
05-27-2004, 06:58 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote JohnBarton:</font><hr> Anyone attending the VNEA nationals... come by the Sterling/Instroke booth<hr /></blockquote>

John, You and Matt hit the Splash Bar and drink one for me, ok?
Steve

Popcorn
05-27-2004, 09:11 AM
This is posted over on azbilliards, any truth to this?

Quote:
Originally Posted by preacher_eric
While I have never ordered from Seybert's, the site looks great and they carry some good products. I did purchase an inexpensive In-Stroke style case from Frank's Center, Inc. at the Super Billiards Expo last year. It looks just as good as In-Stroke, it weighs and costs less, and it's held up great. I had no problems with its quality.

(answer)
It is "Instroke" and not "In-Stroke" and the same company that makes Instroke cases also makes the knockoffs for Frank's center so it is not surprising that you would have no problems. Just like IBM makes clones of their computers Instroke makes clones of their cases to capture the market for those who will not step up for the very best. Mercedes also owns Chrysler.

John

JohnBarton
05-27-2004, 10:47 AM
Yup, the company that makes the Instroke cases is making unnamed knockoffs as well. Remember - I don't own the company anymore. The only thing is that they are at least following my 'no harm - center out' philosophy of case design and making sure that there is nothing in the cavity that can harm a cue at all. So NOW it is possible to get halfway decent cases that look like the Instroke Cowboy models without them being Instrokes. The major difference is that the clones do not have the new Diamond Latch, which is practically indestructible.

I am "onepocketchump" on AZ Billiards and IRL as well :-))

John

Popcorn
05-27-2004, 02:06 PM
What are the recommended off brand names?

In all honesty, how do you justify you eariler sweaping comments?

quote John

"The question was whether the Instroke knockoffs are worth the money and in my opinon, as one who has taken apart more of the knockoffs and more Instroke case than any other person on Earth, is that no they are not worth the money. They are not worth $5 or $500. The reason they are not worth anything is because the way all of them are constructed makes them harmul to the cue at worst and incredibly shoddy at best. I would advise anyone to buy another type of case rather than waste their money on an Instroke knockoff."

Jay
05-27-2004, 04:43 PM
John another question for what do you think of the other cases out there like porper, giuseppe,silver fox and action. How would you rate them in comparison to Instroke. I use a porper now and it seems pretty decent. my only problem is that I have to put the cue joint first and I dont like to do that but other than that its a pretty decent case

JohnBarton
05-28-2004, 07:19 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> What are the recommended off brand names?

In all honesty, how do you justify you eariler sweaping comments?

Well....... pay attention now cuz it's gonna get deep :-)

I justify my comments based on the original poster's question. He specifically said the knockoffs on Ebay were what he is looking at. The knockoffs on Ebay are generally, Bentley, Vincintore or a no-name case made by the same factory that makes the other two. All of these cases share the same characteristics.

There are only two dealers selling Instroke clones which are made in the Instroke factory, Frank's Center and Palmer. Neither of these dealers sell these cases on Ebay and to my knowledge neither has dealers who sell these cases on Ebay. I monitor Ebay almost daily and I haven't seen them.

As for which brands of clones I would reccommend - none of them. Step up and pay the money for an Instroke and not an Instroke wannabe even if it is made in the same place. IF there is no other choice then at least buy the one that is made in the Instroke factory. At least the Instroke people are building from a top quality premise and those features will find their way into the clones. Now, notice I said clones and not knockoffs. To me a clone is a duplicate with all or most of the features of the original. A knockoff is often only a poor facsimile of the original. Like I said, I don't own Instroke anymore so it's not my call. I just report on my findings and I stand behind what I said about the knockoffs, specifically Bentley and Vincintore and Balabushka cases. This is all quite provable in just a few minutes time at the Sterling/Instroke booth at the VNEA.

John



quote John

"The question was whether the Instroke knockoffs are worth the money and in my opinon, as one who has taken apart more of the knockoffs and more Instroke case than any other person on Earth, is that no they are not worth the money. They are not worth $5 or $500. The reason they are not worth anything is because the way all of them are constructed makes them harmul to the cue at worst and incredibly shoddy at best. I would advise anyone to buy another type of case rather than waste their money on an Instroke knockoff." <hr /></blockquote>