View Full Version : In Search Of A Slicker Shaft

07-02-2002, 08:01 AM
After my major cue shaft maintenance routine last weekend I had my shaft nice and smooth. I had done ding removal and sanded with 1000 through 2000 grit, then burnished with leather. The shaft felt pretty slick, but I wasn't fully satisfied. I went down to the basement and dug up some Meguires car cleaner wax, Armor All Vinyl Cleaner-Protectorant, and Blue Max Liquid Car Polish.

The Meguires was not caranuba wax and was not specifically recommended for wood, although it didn't warn against using it on wood either. I would have rather had a wood wax, but it was Sunday night, the stores were closed, and I was too curious to wait. I put that on part of the shaft. It actually took off some dirt that the lighter fluid had not gotten. It cleaned the ferrule good too.

Now feeling like a mad scientist, I took a different part of the shaft and applied Armor-All . The Armor-All bottle does list wood as a material OK to apply to. It is more commonly used on automobile vinyl and is very slippery when dry. It made the shaft pretty slick but I didn't like the feel of it as much as the wax, so I waxed over it. Interestingly, the Armor-All seemed to clean the wood slightly better than the wax if you look closely.

I liked the way the shaft looked and felt after that. It felt a little slicker than before the wax. To see if I could get it even slicker, I put some Blue Max auto polish on it. That seemed to make it a fraction duller and stickier. So I put another coat of wax over the top, and it came back to how it was before the Blue Max.

Even though I don't think this was the best wax for wood, I liked the way it came out. I will play with the cue for a week or two before deciding for sure if the wax was a good idea.

07-02-2002, 08:44 AM
Get this package of four products. It's all you'll ever need.....IMHO /ccboard/images/icons/cool.gif


07-02-2002, 11:05 AM
> Tom,the best stuff I have found is either Mother's Gold Carnauba,in the thin flat can(open it to check the color if possible),or Meguiar's #26 High Tech Yellow Wax,both are about as good as it gets. The wax keeps the shaft slick,and with repeated use builds a finish with depth,although it will get REAL sticky in humid conditions,or if you keep your hand wrapped around it when not shooting. After applying several coats and playing with it,all you have to do to keep it clean and slick is wipe it down frequently or hit it with some 2000 sandpaper. It also works best if the wax is applied over a fresh coating of sealer,like a new or recently refinished shaft. Tommy D.

07-02-2002, 11:27 PM
Tom, as you can probably guess, I'm not a fan of waxes or really any coating on a wooden shaft. I don't even like using anything finer than 1000 grit paper (I believe that 600 is about all you ever want for an initial treatment, anything finer will be counterproductive).

What I find is that once you start waxing, you have to keep doing it, or the shaft gets sticky quick. Also, I find that wax gets sticky very fast in a humid enviroment.

That's why I prefer no finish, just the natural patina from hand oils. All the shaft requires is a wipe down with either a damp cloth, or a solvent wipe, and you're as good as new. And it stays stable. Wax starts getting stickier the moment your hand touches it. So the net change in coefficient of friction is greater than with no finish.

I think that that is an important point. While it may be possible to get a slightly slicker surface at the outset with a wax, I think that the surface becomes less slick after a relatively short time, even in humid conditions. This is the same argument that is used for a linen wrap. It might not provide the most amount of friction for the hand/cue interface, but it provides the most consistent friction over time.

Something like Slick or Shark oil over bare wood might not be a bad idea, but I've not really found them neccessary in the long run.

My personal shafts are smooth (I often get compliments) and I do as little as possible. I'm lazy!

-definitely lazy.....

07-03-2002, 02:00 PM
i was on a big quest to get the best shaft finish possible. please refer to my earlier "perfect shaft finish? perfect shaft finish!" and th efollow up post more more intense details. these suggestions are ever more applicable if you have a lathe(which i don't). i assure you it's worth looking up.
best regards,

p.s. kudos to you and Patrick for the PAtrick autograph cards thing:-) i do hope openly you get to make millions Tom :-)

07-03-2002, 03:37 PM
I started checking it out redwine via a search for "slick".

Regarding the autograph card, it is a major holding in my retirement fund. It is appreciating rapidly. I am still waiting however, for more people to buy theirs. In any event, it is a very nice piece of computer artwork. Like any artwork, it is wisely said that you should buy it if you like the way it looks, the value of it is a secondary benefit. http://vp3.0catch.com/autograph.htm

07-03-2002, 07:29 PM
I began using Karseal Cue Wax on my shaft and then discovered what you've mentioned Tony....i.e. that the shaft gets sticky QUICK when humidity is high.

I continued using the Karseal Wax on the butt.....my South West is of the no-wrap variety, and of course it too got sticky.

Question: is it safe to use lighter fluid on the finish of the butt? In fact, come to think of it...I've not seen any post that addressed the best/safest way to clean the butt of a no-wrap cue. I'd certainly appreciate your input, and Jer's/Blackheart. He makes a fantasticly beautiful nowrap cue! It's as good looking as mine!! LOL /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

07-03-2002, 10:45 PM
Yes it should be safe to use lighter fluid on the butt. However, please test this on the area near or under the butt cap just to make sure! You could also try something like pledge or some other mild furniture cleaner. But the lighter fluid is all I use on my butts unless I want to remove some scratches.


07-04-2002, 11:36 AM
Thanks Tony. Now you opened another door.

I have a great looking ebony South West cue with one very light scratch in the finish on the forearm. I'm sure it could be polished out but I've been VERY hesitant to mess with it. What agent and tool(s) would you recommend I use to polish out this light scratch? Do it by hand? With a car buffer, electric drill w/polish pad, Dremmell Tool with polish wheel???? None of the above???

07-06-2002, 05:07 PM
just use my suggested "perfect shaft finish? perfect shaft finish!" to search under or better yet refer to these sucessfull searches for the meat of the information.
"perfect shaft finish experiment update "
http://www.billiardsdigest.com/ccboard/newreply.php?Cat=&Board=ccbboard&Number=21712&page =1&view=expanded&what=showthreaded&sb=5&o=0
for some reaSON I DOUBT THE LINKS WILL WORK..THE LOG IN THING..oops capslock
also search under "perfect shaft finish? (Experiment in progress)"
the info from not only me but others should help very much:-)
sincere best regards,