View Full Version : Shaft Question For FastLarry
02-16-2003, 12:30 PM
Fast Larry,,,I'd appreciate your opinion on what, if anything I should do to a pristene, new shaft before exposing it to the chalk elements. Would you find value in a sealer in it's perfect condition? I suppose I can grow to not be troubled with a little haze of color(maybe a sealer won't stop that anyway), and yet I'd sure like to get the optimum out of this perfect white color as it is today. I'd play with it now though if I shouldn't be concerned.
Dear Sir, the first lesson I received in 59 from a great player & hustler, Martin Kiaman, Omaha Fat, was how to chalk the cue. Fatty, Walderone, Minnesota Fats showed me the same thing. Always use a brand new piece of chalk, once it gets the slightest hole in it, I leave it on the rail for some other player to take it. Pool halls rarely give you new chalk, if your's doesn't, then go buy a box of it, it's only a quarter a piece. You see players cues, they have this blue ring around the ferrule, because they are using house chalk worn out & the tip goes deep into the chalk. My ferrules have no chalk dust on them, not a mark. Use only Master chalk, blue, not green, the blue is better, that is another story. Silver cup I tell room owners to use it, players not to, it is made too good, another story, another time. You brush the top of the tip lightly, very lightly, like your a lady putting on lipstick.
You dont need chalk in the middle of the tip, only on the outer edges. I plant the butt of the cue on the floor, then rotate the cue making 4 or 5 very light swipes down across the edges, then the last swipe is a very light brush across the middle of the tip. If you see me play, you will note that I chalk like a Snooker pro does, I also put the chalk in my vest pocket. Big no no's are setting the chalk upside down on the rail, so chalk dust gets on your hands and on the rails. Think of chalk as sort of like dirt in a wrapper pressed together. When you see a slow motion strike of the cue ball by the tip on a break, the dust explosion is awesome. Most of the chalk dust ends up in that area of a table. If it is a really first class joint, they would brush the table several times a day, and at closing, run a damp rag across the cloth picking up surface dust, then when dries, vaccum. You dont want dirt getting on the balls, the dirtier the balls, the more they throw.
The English are abhored at our chalk manners, they think we are chalk pigs, and unfortunately they are right, because nobody teaches this vital function. The two greatest cueist of our time I hate to tell you are not pool players, they are Raymound Cuelemans of Belgium, a 3 cushion player who just went into the Hall, chalks beautifully, I've learned a lot from him, & Steve Davis of England, a snooker player. Steve told me he lost the 85 world championship because he had a simple straight in pot black & it missed the pocket entirely. He said when he hit the cue ball he put chalk dust on the cue ball, & when it rolled over, the dust remained on the CB & struck the black where the dust was, causing the black throw out of the pocket. Steve said if he ever has that shot again, he wont chalk his tip. Old time l4.l players used to tell me the reason you could never run 500 balls, is about every 200 balls, you hit a shot & it misses, goes funny and they did not know why, well this is why. I do several trick shots in my show that involves putting chalk dust on the balls to get them to do amazing things. Freeze two balls together, then shoot down table, the most you can throw one ball off the line no matter how much english you use is just a few inches, let me put chalk beteen the two balls & I can throw them 2 l/2 feet. In Snew Ka, they use a very soft safety break, just like 14.l does. That break puts very little chalk on the cue ball. It is not uncommon for a player so ask the referee to mark, lift & clean the cue ball with a cloth. If they see any cue dust mark on it, they want it cleaned. They may do this 3 times during a frame, because they know how vital this is. When was the last time you saw a 9 baller do that, most of our referees dont even wear white gloves, to keep their hand oils off of the ball. Imagine I am in a bar playing Harry Da Horse & No Neck Nelson for 20 a rack & I announce I want the ball lifted & cleaned, I would get my clock cleaned. When we break at 9 ball, there is a permanant blue mark ususally on the cue ball for a while. It is not uncommon after several games to be able to see several blue marks, hello McFly, knock knock, we have a problem here. All you can do now is after every game, try to wipe them off with a hanki or on your pants leg without drawing attention. What should be done, is after every power break, a referee would lift, clean & replace the CB. I know, I am dreaming again, wake up Fast. Use as little chalk with the lightest application as you can. The worst fax pax you can do, is to grind the chalk making a squeeking sound. When you grind, you put too heavy of a layer of chalk, that does not give you the best hit or application of english on the cue ball, in fact the English dont call it English, they call it side. Grind the chalk on heavy, it ends up all over your ferrule, on your shaft, between your fingers, all over the cloth. When I get done, there is no dust on the cloth, my cue has no chalk marks on it, there is no chalk dust between my fingers. I wear a glove, and I recommend one, less friction into the stroke, and if you get into a place that is too hot & sticky, then you dont have to use powder, ban that white powder off of the face of the earth, dont get me started on the powder pigs, another story. I did a lesson yesterday in a private home, the gentleman had a brand new brusnswick table with 860 burgandy cloth. I sell tables with that color cloth, only because the little lady has a say, is buying furniture & not a table, and she picks it out. I play on green 760, if I have a TV shoot coming up, then I use blue. Funky colors I hate, yes I am a old fart stuck in old traditions, I plead guilty as charged on that one. You know the saying, old dogs cant learn new tricks. The owner said you cant use your blue chalk, you have to use the red. I said off colors dont work as well as blue, let me show you how to chalk correctly, then it wont matter. We played for several hours, he was amazed, when we were done, he could hardly find any blue chalk visible on the red cloth. As far as a sealer, some like it, some dont, this is a individual preference. I like the feel of bare wood, I sand mine down with 8000 grit pink cue papers, I buy them direct from 3m by the roll, they are very expensive that way. Send me a stamped self addressed envelop & I'll send you one, it gets the shaft so slick, you would think it is coated. Keeping the shaft clean & slick is vital to fine play. Most players shafts have this deep ring of green far down the shaft, and it is all from improper chalking of the tip. I remember watching the tele, MiZ & this famous lady pro was playing pool against the opposing top English players, the mc, english, was hearing the American lady grinding & squeeking her chalk on every shot like she was running her fingers down a school chalk board, finally he could not take any more of this & said, I say, do you think it would be possible for her to play a new tune with that chalk, we are getting quite bored with the old tune. I sat there and said, quite right, gov nor. Every player should find him a good tip & shaft man, I will not put on my own tip, because I want it on perfect, and that I cannot do. The player should have his shaft fully reconditioned on a lathe & cleaned up, dings removed, and put back in like new condition. Then keep it that way.
After every match, all I do is just wipe down the shaft with a damp cloth, then dry it, never sand off dirt from your shaft, that is not the way to do it. Learning how to chalk, is the first lesson I give every new student, because the most important thing on your cue is your tip.
The other night, I ran into the beautiful young doll in the pool hall, boy was she hot. She invited me over to her place, & before I knew what I was doing, it was 4am & I was in trouble. I jumped up, put on my pants & ran to my car. I hid all my loot & put one thin dime in my pocket, then got a piece of chalk & rubbed it between my fingers & under my finger nails. I went home, snuck in the house, slipped into bed & went to sleep. My wife, Sarah Louise woke me up at 9am & said sternly, OK Fast, just where you all night long. I said honey, I cannot tell a lie, I met this chick, she invited me over to her place, she suduced me, the next thing I new it was 4am. Sarah said dont give me that Fast, you've been out all night long gambling at 9 ball, and you came home broke with one dime left as usual...
Fast Larry, I'm glad to see you are still posting here.
Any time any one asks me a direct question, I don't care what it is, I feel it is rude not to answer them. Fast...
02-16-2003, 05:16 PM
I played Martin Kiaman at Joe Burns place in Ohio. There was a big all around tournament around 1971 or 72. I beat him for $600.00 and got stiffed for $200.00 of it. He said he would pay me if I played him some one handed pool. To be honest, he was sleeping in his car and smelled so bad, I had no interest in playing him anymore anyway, not unless he took a bath. I am not kidding, you could smell him from the other side of the table. You would have needed a spatula to peel off the filthy tee shirt he had on. He was one strange dude.
Martin was over 300 lbs, on the negative side, yes he was a pig, you should go out to dinner with him, he loved to get several people out to a steak house, them beg them for the fat they cut off, then stuff it down with his fingers, it was enough to gag a maggot. He only had that one T shirt. I dont remember the guy stinking like a goat, you must have caught him during a down time & he was sleeping in the car. He was out of his prime when I began working with him in l960. That was the same mistake they made with Walderone, they saw a guy on TV who could not run 3 balls, but in his prime in the 30's, he was a fine one pocket player. Everyone gets old & loses it some day, time spares no player. This guy was a real roadie, I saw him do well in Johnson city, he was not a tourney guy, just a back room hustler. If you beat him, then you are stronger than Whale S***. That is very impressive. You missed his trap, which was to go you double or nothing & play you one handed. He was as good one handed as he was two, actually at that time, he was the best one handed player on the planet. In l960, he would bet you your sock he could make 10 spot shots in a row one handed, I saw him do that. I am today, probably the 7th or 8th best one handed player around, and I would not make that bet for a nickle. I dont think I can even do it. Mike Massey plays a nice game of one handed, he is a good friend of mine, he beat me at one handed at the last Super show we were at together. I think it was about 67, the wide world of sports covered the Jansco's Jamboree for the first time & they opened with several players doing trick shots, handsome danny, dilabirto, champagne eddy, & martin struts out, say's I am Martin Kiaman, commonly known as Omaha Fat, the greatest one handed player on earth, & rolls in a spot shot one handed on the first snap, it was so cool. He taught me my one handed play, and the spear shot. I try & seperate Martin into 5 things, the person, bad, the player, very good, the hustler, great, the one handed player, world class. Martin would roll into Kansas City & hang for a couple of months until he ran out of game, then move on. He would show up 2 or 3 times a year, as Omaha was only a 2 hr drive away. He would come in every day to Pauls, a small 7 table room at 46th & troost, & play a money snooker match, on a 5x10 with very tight pockets. I was amazed at how straight he shot, how he could shoot balls down the rail with some speed & pot them.
He would team up with a used car salesman named Tony, & play against a Canadian who was very good & would have different partners.. Good action on the side. Martin would make his daily nut on the game, then hang around there from 2 to 5, having no where to go. At 5 he would hit the bars to hustle drunks. During those lull 3 hrs, I would drain his brain, he would play with me, show me stuff. I loved to watch his hustle, he was like a bull dog, he would not let you go. Few people know, there was more than one great Fat hustler back then, Walderone wasn't the only one, Tevis tried to tell everyone that, nobody would listen to him.
Best Wishes, Fast Larry. ps, dont ever come looking for me, I don't want to ever play you, you are too good. I have been crippled for the last l l/2 yrs, could barely walk, did not play, teach or hit a ball during this time. I am now recovering & have just recently gone back on the road. My game is slowly coming back to me, they say it's like riding a bike or making love, once you have done it, it never goes away. I have a picture of Martin, there is only one of him ever made. Best Wishes, Fast Larry Guninger
02-16-2003, 09:47 PM
That was a great story! Yours too, Popcorn.
02-16-2003, 10:18 PM
Let me throw a name out there to ya Larry. Weldon Rogers Jr. He was a true road player and during his day was the best small table player out there. I have also witnessed his one-handed game, it was nothing short of miraculous. The nickname given to him was God and if you ever seen him shoot you knew why he got that name.
02-17-2003, 06:14 AM
Sorry you were down physically for that year and a half. Am glad you are doing better.
Even though things got off to a rough start, it does sound like you know a lot and that you are underneath a nice guy. I do apologize for anything insulting that I said.
So from someone who is not a very good pool player, but likes to learn, I will enjoy learning a little that you know... /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif
02-17-2003, 11:02 AM
I'll condense my question if you'll condense/focus your answer. I chalk as you direct, have been for many years. I've cleaned as you directed, have been for a few months. Color just does not stay away. NOW, is it indeed your opinion that a brand spanking new shaft will not gain any from having it sealed before it's use?
Btw, your web page ironically shows two ferrules at the top with the notorious circle fo chalk down on toward the middle of the ferrule. Hmmmmm sid
02-17-2003, 05:48 PM
Just wanted to let you know that I have enjoyed reading your posts. I've been around the game for 40+ years and always like hearing about the old days and the old hustlers/players. You obviously know a ton of stuff about pool and the people who play it, so your contributions on this board will be valued by many of its readers/posters. Don't let some of our more aggressive posters get under your skin!
Dear Sid, your putting words in my mouth I did not say, the sealing of a shaft is good or bad. Many want to & agree with this. What I said is it is a personal preference, I did not say one way was better than the other. When I get a shaft with a sealer on it, I pull out the l00 grit sandpaper & remove it, then reslick it using cue papers, 100-200-400-1000-1500-3000-then 8000. To me, the shaft is now slicker than with the sealer, but that is only my personal opinion, and I am probably wrong about that. The real answer is do what feels best, when in doubt, go with what you know. Fast Larry
Dear Ralph, sorry sir, I never heard of a player named God, but I will tell you this, if I ever ran into any one with a name like that, I would run like hell, I would not play that guy for a nickle, 5 will get you 8 he got that name because he plays better than God. Go with your instincts, if he walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, he is a duck. Same test on the hustlers, when you pick up the first clue, it's a good bet you ain't hustling him, but it he who is working you. You are not the hunter, you are the hunted. There are bar box specialists who live on these things all over the country who are unbeatable. I am from KCMO, and for years Dave Matlock was regarded as being able to give Archer Or the miz the 7 & rob them. He loved that big bar ball, I hate that rock from the moon. I played Detroit Whitey twice in the 60's on bar boxes, both times the guy opens & runs 5 racks on me, He jumped on me because he knew me so there was no hustle. Both times I pulled up after paying him 5 times & walked out shaking my head. Some will say I am a pussy, and they are probably right, but why play a guy who does not miss & you cant beat, if you dont get to shoot. Watch the preditors on National Geographic TV, they always hunt the weak, they always avoid the strong, who can hurt them. Regards, Fast Larry
To bluewolf, thank you sir for your nice comment, that was cool. To clarify my comment, so many in pool like to run in a pack, go on the road with 2 or 3 people, there is safety in numbers, and it can get damn lonely out there. I understand that, and that is smart, surely the best way. I have been traveling full time since l96l and have never stopped. Please, no brag, just fact, but I have been in every city in the country over 50,000 people, in every state, in 60 countries, I have filled up several passports, gone around the world non stop twice & I have always done it alone. I am a true lone wolf. Running with a pack, would only slow me down. A wolf is an amazing animal, very beautiful. I know a couple of people who have dogs who are half wolf. I've seen a pack in the wild in Yellowstone, what a thrill. I ran into a guy who had a wolf as a junk yard dog behind his auto repair place in north georgia, he said dont go near him, I walked up to him & we did a stare down, eye ball to eye ball, nose to nose through the fence, it had a funny ending.
Regards, Fast Larry
02-18-2003, 06:02 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Fast Larry:</font><hr> To bluewolf, thank you sir for your nice comment, that was cool. To clarify my comment, so many in pool like to run in a pack, go on the road with 2 or 3 people, there is safety in numbers, and it can get damn lonely out there. I understand that, and that is smart, surely the best way. I have been traveling full time since l96l and have never stopped. Please, no brag, just fact, but I have been in every city in the country over 50,000 people, in every state, in 60 countries, I have filled up several passports, gone around the world non stop twice & I have always done it alone. I am a true lone wolf. Running with a pack, would only slow me down. A wolf is an amazing animal, very beautiful. I know a couple of people who have dogs who are half wolf. I've seen a pack in the wild in Yellowstone, what a thrill. I ran into a guy who had a wolf as a junk yard dog behind his auto repair place in north georgia, he said dont go near him, I walked up to him & we did a stare down, eye ball to eye ball, nose to nose through the fence, it had a funny ending.
Regards, Fast Larry <hr /></blockquote>
WOW. My pack is small. It has me, my husband, my alaskan malamute, shep mix and siberian husky. I took the name bluewolf about a year before I adopted a wolf. That wolf has passed into the other realm, but having him in my life was a wonderful experience.
02-18-2003, 12:48 PM
"your putting words in my mouth I did not say"
What I was trying to do was get a collection of words from you directed at the subject of my original question, not at all adding words to something you said. All I wanted was an opinion about sealing a shaft, and you've now given that in this post, thanks...sid
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