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View Full Version : What's makes a cue "good" or the "best?"



dr_dave
03-05-2007, 09:45 AM
Based on some strong statements in other recent threads, I was hoping to better understand what people think makes one cue "better" than another. To me, these are some of the obvious attributes of a "good" cue:

- it is mechanical sound and reliable (i.e., it will last a long time and no parts will break, wear easily, or get loose over time).

- it is straight and stable (i.e., it will remain straight over time).

- it has a reliable ferule and a good tip.

- the shaft is smooth and has a "comfortable" taper.

- the shaft creates a "comfortable" amount of squirt.

- the weight and balance is "comfortable."

What else do you consider important are unimportant? What do you think are the most important attributes?

Also, if you are comparing one high quality cue to another, what factors would you consider most important when trying to decide which cue to purchase?

- aesthetic and artistic qualities (how good it looks)?

- brand name reputation?

- whether the cue is hand crafted in the USA, or mass produced in China?

- the amount of squirt the shaft creates?

- something else?

What else is important to you, and what do you consider the most important factors?

Please share all of your thoughts and personal experiences.

Thanks,
Dave

Cornerman
03-05-2007, 10:05 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> Based on some strong statements in other recent threads, I was hoping to better understand what people think makes one cue "better" than another. To me, these are some of the obvious attributes of a "good" cue:

- it is mechanical sound and reliable (i.e., it will last a long time and no parts will break, wear easily, or get loose over time).

- it is straight and stable (i.e., it will remain straight over time).

- it has a reliable ferule and a good tip.

- the shaft is smooth and has a "comfortable" taper.

- the shaft creates a "comfortable" amount of squirt.

- the weight and balance is "comfortable."

What else do you consider important are unimportant? What do you think are the most important attributes?

Also, if you are comparing one high quality cue to another, what factors would you consider most important when trying to decide which cue to purchase?
<hr /></blockquote>Dave, I think this post is only minimally related to the discussion on the other post. So, if you're trying to get information that I was talking about, I'm afraid that this question posed in this thread isn't going to answer it.

Yes, the question of "what and why do people buy certain cues," can be answered. But the question of "what do cuemakers focus on when building a cue," is far from this question. And certainly "what do people think makes one cue better than another?" isn't even close to the previous discussion.

What I would suggest is to think of anything that has an actual function. Like an automobile or a golf club. Then ask the question of "what makes it better?" The real answer is that there might not be anything that's better than the other, but instead, the designer had an intent or intents, and they either met those intents or they do things to try to meet those intents.


Fred

Billy_Bob
03-05-2007, 10:41 AM
I'm kind thinking lately that just about any cue (with a few exceptions) can be a good cue!

Take a cue, any cue, and let someone play with that specific cue for 20 years and they will get to be quite good at using it.

The thing I see which messes people up is "change". (Getting a new different cue, different tip, different tip shape, different weight cue, etc.)

I think always playing with the same exact specification of cue is good for consistency. Changing things is bad. Games go downhill for awhile when players change things.

So far as what many players want for a new cue in my area...

They want a "name" on the cue so they can brag they have a "such and so" cue. Or a price so they can say their cue is worth x number of dollars. And then they want fancy stuff on the butt which makes their cue look better/more expensive than everyone else's cue.

So the "best" cue in my area has fancy designs on the butt, has a "name" on it, and is worth a lot of money. (They don't care about the shaft or tip...)

I'm an exception to the above. I want low deflection, radial laminated shaft, 19.5 oz, quick release joint, Moori hard tip, etc. I prefer a plain look such as a sneaky pete and I sand off any "names" printed on the cue so no one will know what I have.

I want it to look like a piece of junk!

DeadCrab
03-05-2007, 10:59 AM
"Good", or "best" are pretty subjective terms.

In terms of what you are paying for in terms of cue quality, I found this page to be very instructive:

http://www.mcdermottcue.com/XFeaturesCompare.asp

In particular, the differences in wood quality, # of lathe passes, and finishing seem to determine price, and hopefully quality as well.

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 11:05 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Cornerman:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> Based on some strong statements in other recent threads, I was hoping to better understand what people think makes one cue "better" than another. To me, these are some of the obvious attributes of a "good" cue:

- it is mechanical sound and reliable (i.e., it will last a long time and no parts will break, wear easily, or get loose over time).

- it is straight and stable (i.e., it will remain straight over time).

- it has a reliable ferule and a good tip.

- the shaft is smooth and has a "comfortable" taper.

- the shaft creates a "comfortable" amount of squirt.

- the weight and balance is "comfortable."

What else do you consider important are unimportant? What do you think are the most important attributes?

Also, if you are comparing one high quality cue to another, what factors would you consider most important when trying to decide which cue to purchase?
<hr /></blockquote>Dave, I think this post is only minimally related to the discussion on the other post. So, if you're trying to get information that I was talking about, I'm afraid that this question posed in this thread isn't going to answer it.

Yes, the question of "what and why do people buy certain cues," can be answered. But the question of "what do cuemakers focus on when building a cue," is far from this question. And certainly "what do people think makes one cue better than another?" isn't even close to the previous discussion.

What I would suggest is to think of anything that has an actual function. Like an automobile or a golf club. Then ask the question of "what makes it better?" The real answer is that there might not be anything that's better than the other, but instead, the designer had an intent or intents, and they either met those intents or they do things to try to meet those intents.<hr /></blockquote>
Fred,

Regardless of whether you think this thread has anything to do with other threads or not, I hope you will consider posting your ideas about the questions posted here. You probably know as much (or more) about cues and cue makers than anybody else on this forum, so I hope you will share some of your insight and knowledge concerning the questions posed.

Thanks,
Dave

PS: I enjoy (and learn from) your monthly "Cue Maker's Corner" column in Inside Pool Magazine. I look forward to seeing more in the future.

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 11:09 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote DeadCrab:</font><hr>"Good", or "best" are pretty subjective terms.<hr /></blockquote>Exactly (and so is "comfortable")! That's why I wanted to see what different people think.

<blockquote><font class="small">Quote DeadCrab:</font><hr>In terms of what you are paying for in terms of cue quality, I found this page to be very instructive:

http://www.mcdermottcue.com/XFeaturesCompare.asp

In particular, the differences in wood quality, # of lathe passes, and finishing seem to determine price, and hopefully quality as well.<hr /></blockquote>Thanks for the link and info.

Regards,
Dave

eg8r
03-05-2007, 11:13 AM
My requirements might be a bit less than what you have posted, as I tend to not put that much thought into it. For me a good cue is one that does not feel like the leg off a bar stool, does not break when I use it and has a joint so I can break the cue down for easy transport. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

I have yet to find myself playing better with one cue over another. I don't know why this is so, but I guess is that with a short amount of time playing I am usually able to adjust to whatever peculiarites I detect. The idea of using one shaft over another because of squirt does not matter to me since that can all be handled with some time on the table.

eg8r

wolfdancer
03-05-2007, 11:18 AM
In the end, I think there are only two things that make a person decide....this cue's for me.
First is the cue's eye appeal, ( and a given, that the cue is straight)....the second is the "hit"...the sensory feedback that you experience from a good hit.
I've seen identical model cues, "hit" differently, even identical shafts for the same cue.
My own "guess" is that the wood itself, contributes a lot to the hit. Did it come from old forests....and did the tree have optimal growing conditions...resulting in "tight" age rings...was it sap wood, or heart wood...quarter sawn, or....
I once read that after the good cue makers go through the timely process of cutting a piece of lumber down to a shaft blank....they will reject many of the blanks...and sell them to other cue makers, with lesser demands.
...and a third criteria, maybe...."you're asking how much!!! for that cue?"

bataisbest
03-05-2007, 11:18 AM
I think it really comes down to what is comfortable for you. What feels "good" or "right" when you play. I personally play with a CUETEC that cost me around $100 bucks and I feel comfortable playing with it. I've tried other cues but to me they just don't feel right. Again, this is just my personal experience. I've seen some really good players play just as well with a house cue and a decent tip. I also know of a good player who is always changing cues for no real reason other than to show off that he has the "latest and greatest". When it's time to play he struggles because he does'nt stay familiar to one particular cue. Just my 2 cents.

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 11:22 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote eg8r:</font><hr> My requirements might be a bit less than what you have posted, as I tend to not put that much thought into it. For me a good cue is one that does not feel like the leg off a bar stool, does not break when I use it and has a joint so I can break the cue down for easy transport. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

I have yet to find myself playing better with one cue over another. I don't know why this is so, but I guess is that with a short amount of time playing I am usually able to adjust to whatever peculiarites I detect. The idea of using one shaft over another because of squirt does not matter to me since that can all be handled with some time on the table.<hr /></blockquote>
Well stated!

This is what I'm looking for: finding out what is important and unimportant to different people.

I personally prefer a shaft with less squirt, but I understand and appreciate why squirt might not bother other people ... because they are good at (and used to) compensating for it.

Thank you,
Dave

Cornerman
03-05-2007, 11:23 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote wolfdancer:</font><hr> In the end, I think there are only two things that make a person decide....this cue's for me.
First is the cue's eye appeal, ( and a given, that the cue is straight)....the second is the "hit"...<hr /></blockquote>I think Price has to be one of the major considerations for vast number of league and recreational players.

I think price trumps eye appeal. I often wonder if the vast majority of players have even tried different cue brands and names to feel the difference in hit.


[ QUOTE ]
My own "guess" is that the wood itself, contributes a lot to the hit. Did it come from old forests....and did the tree have optimal growing conditions...resulting in "tight" age rings...was it sap wood, or heart wood...quarter sawn, or....
I once read that after the good cue makers go through the timely process of cutting a piece of lumber down to a shaft blank....they will reject many of the blanks...and sell them to other cue makers, with lesser demands.
...and a third criteria, maybe...."you're asking how much!!! for that cue?"
<hr /></blockquote>And now you've just touched on the tip of the iceberg on what differentiates the construction and attributes of one cue vs. the other. Type of wood, moisture content, coring, joinery, machining tolerance, adhesive application procedure, finishing....

Toyoto manufacturing considers the 4 (or 5) M's when considering quality and improvement. Man, Method, Materials, Machinery, (&amp; Measurement). Changing any of the above gets a different product.

Fred

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 11:25 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote wolfdancer:</font><hr> In the end, I think there are only two things that make a person decide....this cue's for me.
First is the cue's eye appeal, ( and a given, that the cue is straight)....the second is the "hit"...the sensory feedback that you experience from a good hit.
I've seen identical model cues, "hit" differently, even identical shafts for the same cue.<hr /></blockquote>Could you and/or others be more specific about what you mean by "hit" and a "good hit." Does it involve sound, ball speed, shock felt in the grip hand, stick vibration, other stuff???

Thanks,
Dave

wolfdancer
03-05-2007, 11:33 AM
And now you've just touched on the tip of the iceberg on what differentiates the construction and attributes of one cue vs. the other. Type of wood, moisture content, coring, joinery, machining tolerance, adhesive application procedure, finishing....

Which is why I was never tempted to buy a Porper Lathe, and become a cue maker (like a few people I knew). Joe puts out a fine piece of equipment, and I got to use one many times....but even a $10k lathe with me behind the steady rest...would be like me playing with a $10k cue....

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 11:35 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote bataisbest:</font><hr> I think it really comes down to what is comfortable for you. What feels "good" or "right" when you play. I personally play with a CUETEC that cost me around $100 bucks and I feel comfortable playing with it. I've tried other cues but to me they just don't feel right. Again, this is just my personal experience. I've seen some really good players play just as well with a house cue and a decent tip. I also know of a good player who is always changing cues for no real reason other than to show off that he has the "latest and greatest". When it's time to play he struggles because he does'nt stay familiar to one particular cue. Just my 2 cents. <hr /></blockquote>I tend to agree with you (if I haven't misinterpreted your statements). A good tip and personal "comfort" are very important.

I still want to know what you and others mean by "comfort."

Personally, my "comfort" level is higher when the stick is straight and smooth, has a weight of about 19 oz, has a good tip of about dime radius, and has as the same amount of squirt as the Predator Z-shaft I have (because that is what I am used to); although, if I could find a shaft with absolutely no squirt, I think I would prefer that. Wouldn't it be nicer if the CB could go in the direction the stick is pointing?

Thanks,
Dave

Paul_Mon
03-05-2007, 11:40 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> Could you and/or others be more specific about what you mean by "hit" and a "good hit." Does it involve sound, ball speed, shock felt in the grip hand, stick vibration, other stuff???







Yes,no,yes,yes,probably.

The feedback from striking the cueball is what I call "hit". My personal two favorites are stick vibration and sound. I like to feel the vibration normally associated with a wood to wood flat-faced joint.

bataisbest
03-05-2007, 11:59 AM
By "comfort" I mean if the stick is the right weight and length, etc. for you. I like a heavier cue( 21 oz.) with a medium LE PRO tip. I have tried to shoot with lighter cues but to me they just don't feel right. I guess it would take me a long time to adjust to play at the same level as with the 21 oz. During the transition period your game will definitley be different for a while. My theory is if it feels right when you play, stick with it. That does'nt mean you have to necessarily win every game you play with that cue, just that when you stroke the ball it feels comfortable.

wolfdancer
03-05-2007, 12:43 PM
Dr. Dave, you are asking the wrong guy here...and how does one describe "feel"....but just because I don't know what i'm talking about, that's never stopped me before.
I have two identical shafts for my Predator cue....one has an Everest tip on it, the other a LePro....blindfolded, I can tell, which is which...I can feel it. And if I were trying for max draw....the Everest tip gives me around 50% more action. Now the shaft that has the LePro on it, I used to have an Everest on it, and it was my original shaft....lent it out and the other guy had the LePro put on.
I couldn't play with a Sumo tip...I get zero feel, or feedback, on if I made a good hit or not.
Most people are practicing making balls, and playing position....try this....try concentrating on the feel of each contact...I believe that you can feel the difference between a good hit, and a poor one....it's only a step up from there to feel the difference between two identical cues. I once read that if you narrow your cue selection down between 2 or 3 cues, and are unsure what to buy.....purchase the one that gives you the best draw....it's the one that matches your stroke the best.
For a detailed explanation of "feel" though...I would recommend reading "The Princess and the Pea"......lol

wolfdancer
03-05-2007, 01:17 PM
RE: "feel"
James Brown said it best

"Whoa-oa-oa! It feels good, I knew that It would, now
It feels good, I knew that It would, now
So good, so good, I got you
When I hold you in my arms
I know that I can't do no wrong
and when I hold you in my arms
My love won't do you no harm"
Bet you didn't know he was talking about his cue.....

BLACKHEART
03-05-2007, 01:19 PM
HI Dave, I enjoyed your PM, to me. To the question at hand. I recently ordered 4 Mcdermott "STAR" Qs. These are made to Mcdermott specifications in China. The price was between $189 &amp; $109. I sold 2, the 1st day. These 2 were maple forearm &amp; butt Qs &amp; had black decals for points &amp; inlays with black wrap. The other 2 had a brown wood, black decals &amp; black wrap. I took the 2, that didn't sell, to my shop &amp; changed the wraps, to white with brown spots. Back to the same pool hall a day latter &amp; sold both in 15 minutes. Only one person, even rolled them. This tells me they want good looking Qs at a cheap price. NOTHING MORE...JER

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 02:11 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote wolfdancer:</font><hr> RE: "feel"
James Brown said it best

"Whoa-oa-oa! It feels good, I knew that It would, now
It feels good, I knew that It would, now
So good, so good, I got you
When I hold you in my arms
I know that I can't do no wrong
and when I hold you in my arms
My love won't do you no harm"
Bet you didn't know he was talking about his cue..... <hr /></blockquote>I love the Godfather of soul, but I had a little something different in mind.

Thanks for trying though (A for effort),
Dave

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 02:27 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote BLACKHEART:</font><hr> HI Dave, I enjoyed your PM, to me. To the question at hand. I recently ordered 4 Mcdermott "STAR" Qs. These are made to Mcdermott specifications in China. The price was between $189 &amp; $109. I sold 2, the 1st day. These 2 were maple forearm &amp; butt Qs &amp; had black decals for points &amp; inlays with black wrap. The other 2 had a brown wood, black decals &amp; black wrap. I took the 2, that didn't sell, to my shop &amp; changed the wraps, to white with brown spots. Back to the same pool hall a day latter &amp; sold both in 15 minutes. Only one person, even rolled them. This tells me they want good looking Qs at a cheap price. NOTHING MORE...JER <hr /></blockquote>Thank you for sharing the story. Isn't that something?

I have seen similar things at my local pool hall. One guy there always has awesome-looking cues with beautiful in-lays and high price tags. He often tries to convince me to buy them. I'm never interested, but he always finds people to buy them. There are lots of people out there that just care how a cue looks. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with that ... I also appreciate beauty. Also, if somebody feels confident because their cue looks good, maybe he or she will actually play better, regardless of the "quality" of the cue (as long as the cue has a decent tip on it, and as long as the cueist knows how to adjust for the amount of squirt the cue produces).

Thanks for the PM and the post.

Regards,
Dave

Cornerman
03-05-2007, 02:39 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote BLACKHEART:</font><hr> This tells me they want good looking Qs at a cheap price. NOTHING MORE...JER <hr /></blockquote>Thank you for sharing the story. Isn't that something?

I have seen similar things at my local pool hall. One guy there always has awesome-looking cues with beautiful in-lays and high price tags <hr /></blockquote>Price. There's a big difference between buying an inexpensive cue at under $200 due to a different wrap and buying a cue with beautiful inlays at a high price tages. These are two completely different animals with different agendas.

The former is common. The latter is uncommon, insofar as the number of pool players in the world are concerned. Simply because there isn't a high percentage of people who can just throw that kind of high money around for "just looks."

Fred

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 02:42 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Cornerman:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote BLACKHEART:</font><hr> This tells me they want good looking Qs at a cheap price. NOTHING MORE...JER <hr /></blockquote>Thank you for sharing the story. Isn't that something?
There are lots of people out there that just care how a cue looks. <hr /></blockquote>Price. There's a big difference between buying an inexpensive cue at under $200 due to a different wrap and buying a cue with beautiful inlays at a high price tages. These are two completely different animals with different agendas.

The former is common. The latter is uncommon, insofar as the number of pool players in the world are concerned. Simply because there isn't a high percentage of people who can just throw that kind of high money around for "just looks."<hr /></blockquote>Good point. Agreed.

Dave

BLACKHEART
03-05-2007, 03:20 PM
The post I just made about the Star Qs, is typical of probably 75% of the league players. I'm building Qs for several players, that post here. I guarantee these people are above average players &amp; know what they want, in a pool Q. I have very good players, who buy my $350 Qs, knowing that the quality of woods, construction, fit &amp; finish is the best that I can do. They just appreciate a good playing Q, without all of the bells &amp; whistles. Price is Very important to the lower end buyer, but not as important to the more pool educated buyer...JER

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 03:31 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote BLACKHEART:</font><hr> The post I just made about the Star Qs, is typical of probably 75% of the league players. I'm building Qs for several players, that post here. I guarantee these people are above average players &amp; know what they want, in a pool Q. I have very good players, who buy my $350 Qs, knowing that the quality of woods, construction, fit &amp; finish is the best that I can do. They just appreciate a good playing Q, without all of the bells &amp; whistles. Price is Very important to the lower end buyer, but not as important to the more pool educated buyer...JER <hr /></blockquote>It seems like there are at least three main categories of cue buyers out there:

1) casual players who want a cheap cue of their own that looks good.

2) serious players who want a high quality cue with good craftsmanship, but don't care so much about art work.

3) people (e.g., collectors) who are willing to pay a lot of cash to get cues that look really nice and/or are of good quality.

What do you think? Did I miss any major categories of buyers?

Thanks,
Dave

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 03:35 PM
I know different cue makers have different market focuses, but where do you (and others) think most cue makers make most of their money, based on the categories below?

Thanks,
Dave

<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr>It seems like there are at least three main categories of cue buyers out there:

1) casual players who want a cheap cue of their own that looks good.

2) serious players who want a high quality cue with good craftsmanship, but don't care so much about art work.

3) people (e.g., collectors) who are willing to pay a lot of cash to get cues that look really nice and/or are of good quality.

What do you think? Did I miss any major categories of buyers?<hr /></blockquote>

ras314
03-05-2007, 03:53 PM
Dr Dave, sure a good thing you can handle a lot of "verbal" abuse, keep up the good work.

I don't own a custom cue, but here is what I look for in a house cue, in order. Number one, does it have a good tip? Number 2 does it feel like a weight I like. Number 3 and not very important is it relativatly straight. Only tool I carry in bars or pool halls (when not hauling around my own cues) is a file I use to dress the tip.

For jointed cues I am a bit more picky about the joint and subjective "feel" because I can always change the tip. It would take me a while to decide wheither I would swap my current favorite cue (a plain predator 314) for another, regardless of price or looks. I have long ago quit being interested in trying to fool a sucker but I still like plain cues.

A thread on what is paticularly objectionable in a cue would be interesting also.

BLACKHEART
03-05-2007, 04:51 PM
Yep, there is another catagory. Qmakers that would normally play with a plain jane Q with beautiful wood. Instead they are expected to play with a show piece Q. Put me in that catagory...JER

P.S. If you look at my web site Qs 10 &amp; 19 were Qs of mine.

dr_dave
03-05-2007, 05:01 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote ras314:</font><hr> Dr Dave, sure a good thing you can handle a lot of "verbal" abuse, keep up the good work.<hr /></blockquote>Thanks. I'll try.

<blockquote><font class="small">Quote ras314:</font><hr>I don't own a custom cue, but here is what I look for in a house cue, in order. Number one, does it have a good tip? Number 2 does it feel like a weight I like. Number 3 and not very important is it relativatly straight. Only tool I carry in bars or pool halls (when not hauling around my own cues) is a file I use to dress the tip.

For jointed cues I am a bit more picky about the joint and subjective "feel" because I can always change the tip. It would take me a while to decide wheither I would swap my current favorite cue (a plain predator 314) for another, regardless of price or looks. I have long ago quit being interested in trying to fool a sucker but I still like plain cues.<hr /></blockquote>Thank you for your thoughts.

<blockquote><font class="small">Quote ras314:</font><hr>A thread on what is paticularly objectionable in a cue would be interesting also.<hr /></blockquote>Why not tell us here? What do you find "paticularly objectionable?"

Regards,
Dave

ras314
03-05-2007, 06:19 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> <hr /></blockquote>Why not tell us here? What do you find "paticularly objectionable?"

Regards,
Dave <hr /></blockquote>

Guess I asked for that, LOL. Here goes some qripes;

1. slip over ferrule tip combos with hard as a rock tips (never seen them on other than bar cues thank goodness)

2. Limber shafts that bend easier in one plane than another.

3. Heavy steel joints that deadnd whatever vibration I might feel from a hit.

4. Anything loose; tips, ferrules, joints, buzzing splices, inlays or whatever might affect the "feel".

5. Slick nylon wrap.

NUMBER ONE: I don't want to have to think about the cue AT ALL when playing. If I'm worried about putting a ding in the handle I won't play with it. If I have to worry about which side of the shaft should be up it's best use is firewood. I must be able to trust the complete cue (tip, chalk, shaft, joint, whatever) to not screw up if I do my part, seldom as that may be, otherwise I feel I have no chance of improving.

Roy

Bob_Jewett
03-05-2007, 06:40 PM
&gt; it is mechanically sound and reliable (i.e., it will last
&gt; a long time and no parts will break, wear easily, or get
&gt; loose over time).

Of course this is important and underappreciated. I've had two cues from cue makers whose names you would immediately recognize that developed loose joints. My present usual playing cue (which I'm considering moving away from) arrived with tips not right, the butt ring and bumper loose, and the points visibly raised under the finish. Its joint does not stay tight.

&gt; it is straight and stable (i.e., it will remain straight over time).

This is perhaps over-rated. There was a top snooker player (Ray Reardon?) who commented that his cue had quite a dog-leg in it, but that since he always held it in the same rotation, the dog-leg, which presumably hung down, was not visible.

&gt; it has a reliable ferule and a good tip.

Some think that ferrules -- note the speling since were picking nits here, partly -- are also over-rated. I have found that removing the ferrule and putting the tip straight onto wood gets a better hit (by my own personal criteria). A pad is needed for this. Since a bad tip can make a cue unplayable, I'd put that closer to the top of the list, if playability is most important.

&gt; the shaft is smooth and has a "comfortable" taper.

Some take this to an extreme, and demand that the wood in the shaft be perfectly white with the rings barely visible. I think that's the wrong approach, unless the cue is just for display. Also, some put the taper ahead of how the stick hits the ball, and I think that's wrong, too.

&gt; the shaft creates a "comfortable" amount of squirt.

Since this is subjective, it's hard to include it in a rating. I suppose you could say that it should not vary under rotation if you're the kind of player who doesn't bother to control stick rotation when playing.

&gt; the weight and balance is "comfortable."

Subjective again.

For the subjective parts, most players are going to go with what they're used to and not experiment with any real range of parameters. I think the cue makers (and instructors) are missing a bet here by not offering some kind of configurable cue that could provide all of the following:

length from 53-62 inches
weight from 16 to 24 ounces
tip diameter from 10 to 14 mm
balance from 16 to 25 inches (at 57-inch cue length)
tapers in the styles offered by Schuler*
misc. wraps including bare, linen, cork, leather, rubber, rayon
ferrules from 0 to 1.125 inches in length
normal and low-squirt technology

(*schuler.com is not working right now, but you can get to their list of shaft tapers on archive.org. There are over a dozen tapers offered.)

Qtec
03-05-2007, 06:52 PM
All I can say is O.M.G.

Qtec

Bob_Jewett
03-05-2007, 07:01 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Bob_Jewett:</font><hr> ... (*schuler.com is not working right now, but you can get to their list of shaft tapers on archive.org. There are over a dozen tapers offered.) <hr /></blockquote>

This direct link may work as well:

http://www.schulercue.com/products/shafts.htm

wolfdancer
03-05-2007, 07:37 PM
A little off topic maybe....but I used to sell cues, and most of my buyers were newer players. We had some nice cues for sale, a couple in the $2k range....but I also didn't want to "oversell" them.....We had an assortment of cues from China, and they looked good...the decals looked like inlays, and hand painted designs....and priced well under $100.
They looked better then the played, but so did most of my customers....
I tried out every cue we had ...and the price usually reflects the quality....
I once owned a Joss, when an $800 cue cue was a lot of money. It looked great, and hit great....the cue played better then I did....long story but,that cue ended up in Japan. My $200 Joss (East) played great for the money...plays even better now, 5 years later, in the hands of a talented local player I gave it to. And this Predator is all the cue I'll ever need, and the price was right....too bad it didn't come with an instruction manual ...it outhits my stroke.

Rich R.
03-05-2007, 07:52 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> Could you and/or others be more specific about what you mean by "hit" and a "good hit." Does it involve sound, ball speed, shock felt in the grip hand, stick vibration, other stuff???<hr /></blockquote>
Dr. Dave, I'm not sure anyone can accurately answer the questions you are asking.
Yes, I want a cue that is well made, straight and will not have loose parts. That is a given.

I also happen to like cues that look good. This is not to say they are extremely fancy. They just look good to me. As looks are a very personal preference, my cues may not look good to you or anyone else, but they look good to me.
This is an example of a question that can not be answered.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, after all.

Other questions that can not be answered are your questions about the "hit" of a cue. Obviously, you don't feel the same things I feel. The balance of a cue may feel good to me, but not to you. The same is true for the feel you get when you hit the cue ball. It may feel good to me, but not to you.

You seem very concerned with squirt, which I happen to think is over scrutinized. IMHO, given a little time, a decent player can adapt to the squirt of most cues.

IMHO, cues are very personal and preferences are based on very personal tastes and the things you feel. I have several custom cues. They all look and feel differently. I wouldn't say one is better than the other, just different. You may have different opinions of these cues, based on your own personal preferences. That is why there are so many successful cue makers and cue companies. The phrase, "different strokes for different folks", was never so appropriate as it is to this thread.

dr_dave
03-06-2007, 07:57 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Bob_Jewett:</font><hr> &gt; it is mechanically sound and reliable (i.e., it will last
&gt; a long time and no parts will break, wear easily, or get
&gt; loose over time).

Of course this is important and underappreciated. I've had two cues from cue makers whose names you would immediately recognize that developed loose joints. My present usual playing cue (which I'm considering moving away from) arrived with tips not right, the butt ring and bumper loose, and the points visibly raised under the finish. Its joint does not stay tight.

&gt; it is straight and stable (i.e., it will remain straight over time).

This is perhaps over-rated. There was a top snooker player (Ray Reardon?) who commented that his cue had quite a dog-leg in it, but that since he always held it in the same rotation, the dog-leg, which presumably hung down, was not visible.

&gt; it has a reliable ferule and a good tip.

Some think that ferrules -- note the speling since were picking nits here, partly -- are also over-rated. I have found that removing the ferrule and putting the tip straight onto wood gets a better hit (by my own personal criteria). A pad is needed for this. Since a bad tip can make a cue unplayable, I'd put that closer to the top of the list, if playability is most important.

&gt; the shaft is smooth and has a "comfortable" taper.

Some take this to an extreme, and demand that the wood in the shaft be perfectly white with the rings barely visible. I think that's the wrong approach, unless the cue is just for display. Also, some put the taper ahead of how the stick hits the ball, and I think that's wrong, too.

&gt; the shaft creates a "comfortable" amount of squirt.

Since this is subjective, it's hard to include it in a rating. I suppose you could say that it should not vary under rotation if you're the kind of player who doesn't bother to control stick rotation when playing.

&gt; the weight and balance is "comfortable."

Subjective again.

For the subjective parts, most players are going to go with what they're used to and not experiment with any real range of parameters. I think the cue makers (and instructors) are missing a bet here by not offering some kind of configurable cue that could provide all of the following:

length from 53-62 inches
weight from 16 to 24 ounces
tip diameter from 10 to 14 mm
balance from 16 to 25 inches (at 57-inch cue length)
tapers in the styles offered by Schuler*
misc. wraps including bare, linen, cork, leather, rubber, rayon
ferrules from 0 to 1.125 inches in length
normal and low-squirt technology

(*schuler.com is not working right now, but you can get to their list of shaft tapers on archive.org. There are over a dozen tapers offered.)<hr /></blockquote>Bob,

Thanks for the additional info (especially the Shuler taper link (http://www.schulercue.com/products/shafts.htm)) and spelling correction ("ferrule"). BTW "we are" is spelled "we're," not "were" /ccboard/images/graemlins/wink.gif

Regards,
Dave

dr_dave
03-06-2007, 07:58 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote ras314:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> <hr /></blockquote>Why not tell us here? What do you find "paticularly objectionable?"<hr /></blockquote>Guess I asked for that, LOL. Here goes some qripes;

1. slip over ferrule tip combos with hard as a rock tips (never seen them on other than bar cues thank goodness)

2. Limber shafts that bend easier in one plane than another.

3. Heavy steel joints that deadnd whatever vibration I might feel from a hit.

4. Anything loose; tips, ferrules, joints, buzzing splices, inlays or whatever might affect the "feel".

5. Slick nylon wrap.

NUMBER ONE: I don't want to have to think about the cue AT ALL when playing. If I'm worried about putting a ding in the handle I won't play with it. If I have to worry about which side of the shaft should be up it's best use is firewood. I must be able to trust the complete cue (tip, chalk, shaft, joint, whatever) to not screw up if I do my part, seldom as that may be, otherwise I feel I have no chance of improving.<hr /></blockquote>Don't hold back so much next time. /ccboard/images/graemlins/wink.gif

dr_dave
03-06-2007, 08:08 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Qtec:</font><hr> All I can say is O.M.G.<hr /></blockquote>
On Meth and Grass???

Opining like Mother Goose???

Obnoxious Moron Groaning???

Out of My Gay-closet???

/ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Oh, I get it ... "Oh My God."

Thank you for your contributions to the thread,
Dave

dr_dave
03-06-2007, 08:22 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Rich R.:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> Could you and/or others be more specific about what you mean by "hit" and a "good hit." Does it involve sound, ball speed, shock felt in the grip hand, stick vibration, other stuff???<hr /></blockquote>
Dr. Dave, I'm not sure anyone can accurately answer the questions you are asking.
Yes, I want a cue that is well made, straight and will not have loose parts. That is a given.

I also happen to like cues that look good. This is not to say they are extremely fancy. They just look good to me. As looks are a very personal preference, my cues may not look good to you or anyone else, but they look good to me.
This is an example of a question that can not be answered.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, after all.

Other questions that can not be answered are your questions about the "hit" of a cue. Obviously, you don't feel the same things I feel. The balance of a cue may feel good to me, but not to you. The same is true for the feel you get when you hit the cue ball. It may feel good to me, but not to you.

You seem very concerned with squirt, which I happen to think is over scrutinized. IMHO, given a little time, a decent player can adapt to the squirt of most cues.

IMHO, cues are very personal and preferences are based on very personal tastes and the things you feel. I have several custom cues. They all look and feel differently. I wouldn't say one is better than the other, just different. You may have different opinions of these cues, based on your own personal preferences. That is why there are so many successful cue makers and cue companies. The phrase, "different strokes for different folks", was never so appropriate as it is to this thread. <hr /></blockquote>Rich,

Thank you for your thoughts. I agree that almost everything about cue "goodness" is subjective and personal. That's why I posted the thread ... I wanted to see what different people think.

Squirt is about the only thing that can be measured objectively. I personally would prefer a cue with zero squirt, so I wouldn't need to adjust my aim at all. Because no zero-squirt cue is currently available, I settle for a low-squirt cue that requires the least amount of aim adjustment. Again, I understand this is a personal preference.

Regards,
Dave

DickLeonard
03-06-2007, 08:41 AM
Cornerman I could have owned twenty Balabushka's but I never hit one that didn't have a clunk. It wasn't on the first shot or the second but then it appeared. In fact that was how I could tell if the Cue was a real Balabushka, you could copy his workmanship but the Clunk was impossible to create.####

dr_dave
03-06-2007, 08:50 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote DickLeonard:</font><hr> Cornerman I could have owned twenty Balabushka's but I never hit one that didn't have a clunk. It wasn't on the first shot or the second but then it appeared. In fact that was how I could tell if the Cue was a real Balabushka, you could copy his workmanship but the Clunk was impossible to create.#### <hr /></blockquote>Is it a "good" and "comfortable" clunk or is it a "bad" clunk? /ccboard/images/graemlins/wink.gif

Dave

dr_dave
03-06-2007, 08:55 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote DickLeonard:</font><hr> Cornerman I could have owned twenty Balabushka's but I never hit one that didn't have a clunk. It wasn't on the first shot or the second but then it appeared. In fact that was how I could tell if the Cue was a real Balabushka, you could copy his workmanship but the Clunk was impossible to create.#### <hr /></blockquote>Is it a "good" and "comfortable" clunk or is it a "bad" clunk? /ccboard/images/graemlins/wink.gif<hr /></blockquote>I personally love "the smell of nepalm in the morning" and the "clunk" of a carbon fiber or fiberglass cue, but I know not everybody would agree. /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif

Regards,
Dave

Fran Crimi
03-06-2007, 09:01 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote DickLeonard:</font><hr> Cornerman I could have owned twenty Balabushka's but I never hit one that didn't have a clunk. It wasn't on the first shot or the second but then it appeared. In fact that was how I could tell if the Cue was a real Balabushka, you could copy his workmanship but the Clunk was impossible to create.#### <hr /></blockquote>

Ha! I remember that clunk, Dick. I think it was the solid steel joint combined with the particular pin he used. It made the wood vibrate like a tuning fork. I think it clunked in B flat, didn't it? /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Fran

Dagwood
03-06-2007, 11:24 AM
Hi Dave...

I've found that my preferences for what I look for in a cue has changed over the years. Of course, when I started, it was all about the price of the cue and how it looked. Mali, Falcon, MacDermott's, and Meucci's were the cues to have. After a little while, I started looking at the custom cues. Owned a couple...but still hadn't looked for a cue yet based on the "hit" of the cue. Played with those for a little while and moved to a predator (1st gen). Played great with that, but just couldn't really get totally comfortable with it. By this point my game had progressed quite a bit, and I had become a little more discerning in what I was really looking for in a cue in regards to the "hit". I found that I didn't like the feedback, or lack there-of, given by a steel jointed cue. I moreso enjoyed the full feedback given by a full faced wood to wood, or ivory to wood joint with a 3/8 10 pin. One day, while I was back home on leave, a friend of mine handed me a cue to play with...a custom cue from a relatively new local cue maker. Fell in love with it from the first ball I hit. Everything on it seemed to fit just right to me. The diamater of the handle/wrap, the taper (straight taper, not a pro taper), the tip/ferrule combination (moori and ivory), the tip size and shape, (13 1/8 and somewhere between and dime and nickel shape). It was a little heavier than I was used to at the time (20oz, vs 18.5-19oz), but I wasn't worried that would mess me up in the long run. It had a 3/8 10 pin with a full wood to wood joint that I liked. The feedback I got from hitting the cueball told me exactly what I had done wrong or right. Since that time, I've owned or played with 3 cues of his, and am having another one made currently. Every cue I've played with of his has felt the same, in regards to feedback from the shot. Of course, the actual feel of the hit changes from wood type to wood type. (i.e. a curly maple forearm will feel different than a cocobolo or ebony forearm). But the feedback I was getting was pretty much identical.

It was a long process to really find something that fit what I was looking for. And to answer your question, what makes one cue better than another...well FOR ME it's these things:

1. The joint of the cue. Is it wood to wood? What kind of pin does it have? If it's ivory, is it a full ivory joint or a sleeve? (prefer full) Is it full faced or collared? (again, prefer full faced)

2. What kind of taper is there on the shaft? I find that a straighter taper (like the one used on predator shafts) gives less squirt than a pro taper.

3. How is the cue constructed? Will the rings come loose and crack the finish? Will the inlays lift? Are the points even on the cue?

4. Probably most importantly, when I hit with the cue, am I getting feedback and is the feedback I'm getting telling me what happened during the course of the shot?

5. Ascetically, I'm looking for a cue that isn't gaudy, but has a classic look to it. I prefer to let natural wood grains and colors accentuate the look of the cue rather than alot of inlays.

6. Diameter of the tip...I have trouble playing with anything smaller than 13mm. Also, I'm a snob and don't like playing with anything other than a moori if I have a choice.

There are other things that go into it, but those are the major ones that I can think of off the top of my head. I think I answered the question...then again I may have gotten off track...lol.

Dags

Dagwood
03-06-2007, 11:27 AM
Hi Dave...

I've found that my preferences for what I look for in a cue has changed over the years. Of course, when I started, it was all about the price of the cue and how it looked. Mali, Falcon, MacDermott's, and Meucci's were the cues to have. After a little while, I started looking at the custom cues. Owned a couple...but still hadn't looked for a cue yet based on the "hit" of the cue. Played with those for a little while and moved to a predator (1st gen). Played great with that, but just couldn't really get totally comfortable with it. By this point my game had progressed quite a bit, and I had become a little more discerning in what I was really looking for in a cue in regards to the "hit". I found that I didn't like the feedback, or lack there-of, given by a steel jointed cue. I moreso enjoyed the full feedback given by a full faced wood to wood, or ivory to wood joint with a 3/8 10 pin. One day, while I was back home on leave, a friend of mine handed me a cue to play with...a custom cue from a relatively new local cue maker. Fell in love with it from the first ball I hit. Everything on it seemed to fit just right to me. The diamater of the handle/wrap, the taper (straight taper, not a pro taper), the tip/ferrule combination (moori and ivory), the tip size and shape, (13 1/8 and somewhere between and dime and nickel shape). It was a little heavier than I was used to at the time (20oz, vs 18.5-19oz), but I wasn't worried that would mess me up in the long run. It had a 3/8 10 pin with a full wood to wood joint that I liked. The feedback I got from hitting the cueball told me exactly what I had done wrong or right. Since that time, I've owned or played with 3 cues of his, and am having another one made currently. Every cue I've played with of his has felt the same, in regards to feedback from the shot. Of course, the actual feel of the hit changes from wood type to wood type. (i.e. a curly maple forearm will feel different than a cocobolo or ebony forearm). But the feedback I was getting was pretty much identical.

It was a long process to really find something that fit what I was looking for. And to answer your question, what makes one cue better than another...well FOR ME it's these things:

1. The joint of the cue. Is it wood to wood? What kind of pin does it have? If it's ivory, is it a full ivory joint or a sleeve? (prefer full) Is it full faced or collared? (again, prefer full faced)

2. What kind of taper is there on the shaft? I find that a straighter taper (like the one used on predator shafts) gives less squirt than a pro taper.

3. How is the cue constructed? Will the rings come loose and crack the finish? Will the inlays lift? Are the points even on the cue?

4. Probably most importantly, when I hit with the cue, am I getting feedback and is the feedback I'm getting telling me what happened during the course of the shot?

5. Ascetically, I'm looking for a cue that isn't gaudy, but has a classic look to it. I prefer to let natural wood grains and colors accentuate the look of the cue rather than alot of inlays.

6. Diameter of the tip...I have trouble playing with anything smaller than 13mm. Also, I'm a snob and don't like playing with anything other than a moori if I have a choice.

There are other things that go into it, but those are the major ones that I can think of off the top of my head. I think I answered the question...then again I may have gotten off track...lol.

Dags

dr_dave
03-06-2007, 01:17 PM
Thank you. That's exactly what I had in mind for how people might answer. Very thorough and informative, with explanations for why you prefer certain things.

I'd still like to know more about the "feedback" and how it helps you diagnose what went wrong with a particular type of shot. I think a miscue is obvious with any cue, so you must mean something else. Does the "feedback" help you know whether you hit exact center-ball or not? What else does it help with, and how?

Thanks again,
Dave
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Dagwood:</font><hr> Hi Dave...

I've found that my preferences for what I look for in a cue has changed over the years. Of course, when I started, it was all about the price of the cue and how it looked. Mali, Falcon, MacDermott's, and Meucci's were the cues to have. After a little while, I started looking at the custom cues. Owned a couple...but still hadn't looked for a cue yet based on the "hit" of the cue. Played with those for a little while and moved to a predator (1st gen). Played great with that, but just couldn't really get totally comfortable with it. By this point my game had progressed quite a bit, and I had become a little more discerning in what I was really looking for in a cue in regards to the "hit". I found that I didn't like the feedback, or lack there-of, given by a steel jointed cue. I moreso enjoyed the full feedback given by a full faced wood to wood, or ivory to wood joint with a 3/8 10 pin. One day, while I was back home on leave, a friend of mine handed me a cue to play with...a custom cue from a relatively new local cue maker. Fell in love with it from the first ball I hit. Everything on it seemed to fit just right to me. The diamater of the handle/wrap, the taper (straight taper, not a pro taper), the tip/ferrule combination (moori and ivory), the tip size and shape, (13 1/8 and somewhere between and dime and nickel shape). It was a little heavier than I was used to at the time (20oz, vs 18.5-19oz), but I wasn't worried that would mess me up in the long run. It had a 3/8 10 pin with a full wood to wood joint that I liked. The feedback I got from hitting the cueball told me exactly what I had done wrong or right. Since that time, I've owned or played with 3 cues of his, and am having another one made currently. Every cue I've played with of his has felt the same, in regards to feedback from the shot. Of course, the actual feel of the hit changes from wood type to wood type. (i.e. a curly maple forearm will feel different than a cocobolo or ebony forearm). But the feedback I was getting was pretty much identical.

It was a long process to really find something that fit what I was looking for. And to answer your question, what makes one cue better than another...well FOR ME it's these things:

1. The joint of the cue. Is it wood to wood? What kind of pin does it have? If it's ivory, is it a full ivory joint or a sleeve? (prefer full) Is it full faced or collared? (again, prefer full faced)

2. What kind of taper is there on the shaft? I find that a straighter taper (like the one used on predator shafts) gives less squirt than a pro taper.

3. How is the cue constructed? Will the rings come loose and crack the finish? Will the inlays lift? Are the points even on the cue?

4. Probably most importantly, when I hit with the cue, am I getting feedback and is the feedback I'm getting telling me what happened during the course of the shot?

5. Ascetically, I'm looking for a cue that isn't gaudy, but has a classic look to it. I prefer to let natural wood grains and colors accentuate the look of the cue rather than alot of inlays.

6. Diameter of the tip...I have trouble playing with anything smaller than 13mm. Also, I'm a snob and don't like playing with anything other than a moori if I have a choice.

There are other things that go into it, but those are the major ones that I can think of off the top of my head. I think I answered the question...then again I may have gotten off track...lol.

Dags <hr /></blockquote>

ras314
03-06-2007, 02:26 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> Don't hold back so much next time. /ccboard/images/graemlins/wink.gif <hr /></blockquote>

OK, next time I'll say the "M-----" right out loud. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Actually something of what people call hit or feel can be measured. Partly it concerns vibration and sound. A solid center ball hit will probably give mostly compression vibrations while the more side the hit the more transverse vibration there will be in the shaft. How much you "feel" will depend a good bit on the joint and "stiffness" of the shaft. I suspect there is a damping factor involved in the material of the shaft as well as in the thickness.

What constitutes a "good hit" is mostly subjective. Again it may be simpler to list what is a poor hit. Try putting a rubber washer in the joint to get a dead feel, some one will probably like it. Loosen the joint for another objectionable hit, at least to me. Sound of a hit is also a good clue of what I am doing right or wrong, assuming there is such a thing as a pool hall left where you can actualy hear anything.

High speed videos of the cue during a hard stroke like a break are quite interesting also, maybe you have some?

Dagwood
03-06-2007, 03:19 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> I'd still like to know more about the "feedback" and how it helps you diagnose what went wrong with a particular type of shot. I think a miscue is obvious with any cue, so you must mean something else. Does the "feedback" help you know whether you hit exact center-ball or not? What else does it help with, and how?

Thanks again,
Dave
<hr /></blockquote>
I found that when shooting with this cue I was able to tell just by the quality of the vibrations (i.e. feedback) that I was getting whether or not I had hit my intended target on the cueball. For example, if I'm going to try to draw the ball...not extreme, but maybe 4 foot, I can tell before I see the action on the cue ball whether or not I did what I wanted; sometimes it is profound enough that I can point to the spot that the cue will stop. The same goes for left, right and top. Now, I have to say that it did take me a little bit shooting with these cues, (and by little, I mean maybe a week...maybe), to be able to interpret what I was feeling in the cue. But as far as I'm concerned, I'll never have another cue as a regular playing cue. With any other cue I've shot with in the past, I could not make sense, or at least this much sense out of the feedback I was getting out of the hit. For me, these cues just "fit" my stroke, and apparently my physiology. To use your example, center ball hit feels much more full then even a shot that is using 1/8th a tip of top, botton, right or left with this cue. So if I need to hit a stop shot, I'll know immediately what I did wrong and can correct the problem before it gets out of hand. I'm also able to tell when I'm in full punch, because every shot I take, I can feel the shot as I'm taking it, and it just builds my confidence. (I guess the reverse is true as well. It may take me out of stroke quicker because I'll know when I made a bad stroke.) it's a usefull tool when you get down to the nitty gritty of trying to improve your game. Hope it helps...

Dags

cushioncrawler
03-06-2007, 06:50 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote dr_dave:</font><hr> ....Squirt is about the only thing that can be measured objectively. I personally would prefer a cue with zero squirt, so I wouldn't need to adjust my aim at all. Because no zero-squirt cue is currently available, I settle for a low-squirt cue that requires the least amount of aim adjustment. Again, I understand this is a personal preference....<hr /></blockquote>Dr Dave -- From old threads, woznt it said that every cue iz zero-squirt if u uze the matching pivot point (ie bridge length). In which case "zero squirt" would/could mean a cue who'z squirt matches one'z natural (preferred) bridge length. Perhaps one could take it further, one could bring along a number of slightly different cues, and then pick one that suites the bedcloth slipperyness, ie haz zero-squirt for that table. Of course i realize that squirt is not that simple, ie it allso depends on shot-speed etc -- in which case your favorite (or baseline) speed (and that table's speed) would come into the equation. madMac.

Bob_Jewett
03-06-2007, 07:10 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote cushioncrawler:</font><hr> ... In which case "zero squirt" would/could mean a cue who'z squirt matches one'z natural (preferred) bridge length. ... <hr /></blockquote>
Mac, that's not how squirt is defined. You may want to define sKuuRRt as you mentioned, but people might miss your meaning if you start using novel words in idiosyncratic ways. Just a suggestion for better communication.

cushioncrawler
03-06-2007, 08:05 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Bob_Jewett:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote cushioncrawler:</font><hr> ... In which case "zero squirt" would/could mean a cue who'z squirt matches one'z natural (preferred) bridge length. ... <hr /></blockquote>Mac, that's not how squirt is defined. You may want to define sKuuRRt as you mentioned, but people might miss your meaning if you start using novel words in idiosyncratic ways. Just a suggestion for better communication. <hr /></blockquote>Hi Bob -- I think that i used "squirt" correctly. Regarding "zero squirt", i think that my comments might be ok, depending -- but if there is some sort of "standard length" for a bridge then i guess that a cue is or isnt "zero squirt", and i guess i woz wrong. Otherwize i must be correct. I said (in effect) that every cue iz "zero squirt" if u find its peculiar bridge length (alltho this will change with the individual). madMac.

Morris183
03-06-2007, 09:47 PM
Is Ash that's been aged for over 10 years a choice for making a good cue? I have quite a bit stored on my property in Westchester, NY. It's dry and in excellant condition. Moe

cushioncrawler
03-07-2007, 01:34 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Bob_Jewett:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote cushioncrawler:</font><hr> ... In which case "zero squirt" would/could mean a cue who'z squirt matches one'z natural (preferred) bridge length. ... <hr /></blockquote>Mac, that's not how squirt is defined. You may want to define sKuuRRt as you mentioned, but people might miss your meaning if you start using novel words in idiosyncratic ways. Just a suggestion for better communication. <hr /></blockquote>Bob -- I now see what u mean. Squirt is the qball's initial angle from parallel. And, Dr Dave actually said he would prefer a zero squirt cue "if one existed". madMac.

Cornerman
03-07-2007, 04:41 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote cushioncrawler:</font><hr>
Dr Dave -- From old threads, woznt it said that every cue iz zero-squirt if u uze the matching pivot point (ie bridge length). In which case "zero squirt" would/could mean a cue who'z squirt matches one'z natural (preferred) bridge length. <hr /></blockquote>I think we need a different term that's less confusing. I've been using the term "regular squirt," but maybe that's confusing as well.
Traditional squirt,
normal squirt,
BHE squirt,
Bridge Length Squirt.

Fred

Cornerman
03-07-2007, 04:44 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote DickLeonard:</font><hr> Cornerman I could have owned twenty Balabushka's but I never hit one that didn't have a clunk. It wasn't on the first shot or the second but then it appeared. In fact that was how I could tell if the Cue was a real Balabushka, you could copy his workmanship but the Clunk was impossible to create.#### <hr /></blockquote>I know you always say this, and I don't doubt your experiences Butch. I have only shot a few shots with a dozen Balabushkas, and none of them had a clunk. But the Paradise cues, some of those were just awful. Any chance you were thinking of Paradise?

Fred

Rich R.
03-07-2007, 05:44 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Morris183:</font><hr> Is Ash that's been aged for over 10 years a choice for making a good cue? I have quite a bit stored on my property in Westchester, NY. It's dry and in excellant condition. Moe <hr /></blockquote>
I have heard of ash being used for cue shafts and, IIRC, it is used a lot in snooker cues. I have to assume a lot would depend on the straightness of the grain in your particular batch of ash.
If I were you, and wanted a cue from your ash, I would take a sample to the cue maker of your choice and discuss it with him.

Fran Crimi
03-07-2007, 06:04 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Cornerman:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote DickLeonard:</font><hr> Cornerman I could have owned twenty Balabushka's but I never hit one that didn't have a clunk. It wasn't on the first shot or the second but then it appeared. In fact that was how I could tell if the Cue was a real Balabushka, you could copy his workmanship but the Clunk was impossible to create.#### <hr /></blockquote>I know you always say this, and I don't doubt your experiences Butch. I have only shot a few shots with a dozen Balabushkas, and none of them had a clunk. But the Paradise cues, some of those were just awful. Any chance you were thinking of Paradise?

Fred <hr /></blockquote>


That's very interesting. I have an early Balabushka and it clunks, but the shaft was made by Paradise. Paul Rubino told me that with his earlier cues, Balabushka often purchased shafts from Paradise.

I don't know if Paradise actually fitted the shafts or just provided the blanks.
Fran

Fran Crimi
03-07-2007, 06:21 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Morris183:</font><hr> Is Ash that's been aged for over 10 years a choice for making a good cue? I have quite a bit stored on my property in Westchester, NY. It's dry and in excellant condition. Moe <hr /></blockquote>

Many snooker cues are made of ash because it's a hard wood. I was often a guinea pig for Ray Schuler's experiments and he once made me an ash pool shaft. It played fine but the wood has a very dark grain and I found it distracting. Maybe it's something you can get used to but I felt: Why bother? If the ash shaft wasn't superior to the maple shaft, and I felt it wasn't, why should I put myself through that?

Fran

DickLeonard
03-07-2007, 06:37 AM
Dr.Dave it invaded the space where good pool is played. You are waiting for it to happen again, I know I felt a clunk oh there it is again. I'll tighten the joint no that didn't help. I would always pass on the cue even tho it was only $90.

Later I saw an X-ray of a Balabushka it had a bolt with a nut on it imbedded in the foreshaft. The cue had the same dread clunk. It repeated maybe on the fifth hit. Could the bolt and nut be a method George used to add weight to balance the cue be the Culprit. It seemed to me to be the only reason to explain the clunk. ####

DickLeonard
03-07-2007, 07:15 AM
Fran thanks I thought I was the only one that felt that with George's cues. I always thought B Sharp, just a note for improvement.####

DickLeonard
03-07-2007, 07:38 AM
Fred no Balabushka's, I had nothing but praise for my Paradise. Ran 186 balls the first time I played with it in fact. Now that I think of it I played my best pool that cue why did I ever give it away. I remember the shafts were whittled down to near 12 mils. Always nicking the shafts with my bridge work. I still have a Paradise cue it appears in the Billiard Enclyepedia pictures of Frank's cues a work in Plastic butt piece.####

Deeman3
03-07-2007, 08:36 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Fran Crimi:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote Cornerman:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote DickLeonard:</font><hr> Cornerman I could have owned twenty Balabushka's but I never hit one that didn't have a clunk. It wasn't on the first shot or the second but then it appeared. In fact that was how I could tell if the Cue was a real Balabushka, you could copy his workmanship but the Clunk was impossible to create.#### <hr /></blockquote>I know you always say this, and I don't doubt your experiences Butch. I have only shot a few shots with a dozen Balabushkas, and none of them had a clunk. But the Paradise cues, some of those were just awful. Any chance you were thinking of Paradise?

Fred <hr /></blockquote>


That's very interesting. I have an early Balabushka and it clunks, but the shaft was made by Paradise. Paul Rubino told me that with his earlier cues, Balabushka often purchased shafts from Paradise.

I don't know if Paradise actually fitted the shafts or just provided the blanks.
Fran <hr /></blockquote>

<font color="blue"> Fran,

We had this same discussion back in about 1999 but mine did not have the clunk, and still does not. It was a 1969 and is pretty fancy by George's standards. Both my shafts have the same characteristics but one was made thinner for snooker and does have what some consider a clunk. If I'm ever back in NYC, you or Dick can hit it and give me feedback. </font color>

DeeMan

Fran Crimi
03-07-2007, 11:32 AM
[ QUOTE ]
Fran,

We had this same discussion back in about 1999 but mine did not have the clunk, and still does not. It was a 1969 and is pretty fancy by George's standards. Both my shafts have the same characteristics but one was made thinner for snooker and does have what some consider a clunk. If I'm ever back in NYC, you or Dick can hit it and give me feedback.

DeeMan

<hr /></blockquote>

Who knows...maybe your thinner shaft is a Paradise. I'm thinking that Fred is on to something about the clunk in Paradise cues.

Yes! By all means get in touch next time you come to NY.

Fran

KGeeED
03-07-2007, 01:17 PM
What makes it the best is when I am selling it.

"It is the best cue I have ever used and I have used a ton. I got to sell it to help pay for the new cue I am having made."

How often have you read something similar to that? Wonder why they are selling such a great cue. There is no guarantee that he new one will now be better.

dr_dave
03-07-2007, 02:39 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote cushioncrawler:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote Bob_Jewett:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote cushioncrawler:</font><hr> ... In which case "zero squirt" would/could mean a cue who'z squirt matches one'z natural (preferred) bridge length. ... <hr /></blockquote>Mac, that's not how squirt is defined. You may want to define sKuuRRt as you mentioned, but people might miss your meaning if you start using novel words in idiosyncratic ways. Just a suggestion for better communication. <hr /></blockquote>Bob -- I now see what u mean. Squirt is the qball's initial angle from parallel. And, Dr Dave actually said he would prefer a zero squirt cue "if one existed". madMac.<hr /></blockquote>Mac and others,

FYI, I just posted a draft of my latest instructional article (see May '07 BD instructional article (http://www.engr.colostate.edu/~dga/pool/bd_articles/2007/may07.pdf)). It has a good illustration and explanation of squirt, swerve, and throw, as most people interpret them. IN the article, I also summarize and comment on most of the recent discussion on this forum concerning:

- squirt
- swerve
- throw
- BHE and FHE
- OE
- cloth effects
- ball conditions
- cling
- etc.

I am hoping you and others will read through it and let me know if you have any feedback or disagreements. The article doesn't go to press until the end of the month, so I have time to make small changes.

Thanks,
Dave

cushioncrawler
03-07-2007, 02:45 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Cornerman:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote cushioncrawler:</font><hr> Dr Dave -- From old threads, woznt it said that every cue iz zero-squirt if u uze the matching pivot point (ie bridge length). In which case "zero squirt" would/could mean a cue who'z squirt matches one'z natural (preferred) bridge length. <hr /></blockquote>I think we need a different term that's less confusing. I've been using the term "regular squirt," but maybe that's confusing as well.
Traditional squirt,
normal squirt,
BHE squirt,
Bridge Length Squirt. Fred <hr /></blockquote> Fred -- Sounds good to me. My earlier comments re every cue being zero-squirt (depending on bridge-length) were awry. But all the same i have a problem with Bob's etc definition of squirt, but i didnt want to hijack this thread, but squirt appears to be the main theme here, so perhaps a few words wont hurt.

"Pure squirt" -- I like this term. I would measure "pure squirt" uzing a qball on a (cotton) pendulum, to eliminate any bed-reaction. But a pendulum test might give nearnuff the same rezult as a simpler test uzing a horizontal cue (do platinum use a horizontal cue??).

"Real squirt" -- What a player gets on a real shot.

"Low squirt cue" -- The good news is that this term is allwayz ok and unambiguous no matter what sort of definition one might prefer.

It possibly all worth looking into again. madMac.

Cornerman
03-07-2007, 02:54 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote cushioncrawler:</font><hr> "Pure squirt" -- I like this term. I would measure "pure squirt" uzing a qball on a (cotton) pendulum, to eliminate any bed-reaction. But a pendulum test might give nearnuff the same rezult as a simpler test uzing a horizontal cue (do platinum use a horizontal cue??).

"Real squirt" -- What a player gets on a real shot.

"Low squirt cue" -- The good news is that this term is allwayz ok and unambiguous no matter what sort of definition one might prefer.

<hr /></blockquote>Add "effective squirt" and "squirt angle" to the mix.

Effective squirt is what Bob Meucci measures, measuring the offset distance that an object ball gets hit off line. So throw is mixed in as well.

Squirt Angle is the actual angle that the cueball deviates from the aim line.

Fred

cushioncrawler
03-07-2007, 03:46 PM
Dr Dave -- I liked the article and video. I sent a PM with a couple of thorts. madMac.