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View Full Version : Irish Linen vs. Leather wrap



03-22-2002, 09:48 AM
I'm having a cue made and since I've always used Irish Linen that was my choice. I've never played with a cue with a leather wrap but recently someone told me that is what I should get on this new cue. I'm interested in opinions on leather vs. Irish Linen. Thanks.

03-22-2002, 09:51 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: David NC:</font><hr> I'm having a cue made and since I've always used Irish Linen that was my choice. I've never played with a cue with a leather wrap but recently someone told me that is what I should get on this new cue. I'm interested in opinions on leather vs. Irish Linen. Thanks. <hr></blockquote>

IMO, no matter what a good plain sealed wrap or no wrap is the best to get.

Kato
03-22-2002, 09:53 AM
I went from Irish Linen to no wrap. I don't think I'll use wrap again. I don't like leather.

Kato

03-22-2002, 10:10 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Kato:</font><hr> I went from Irish Linen to no wrap. I don't think I'll use wrap again. I don't like leather.

Kato <hr></blockquote>

Kato,

Did you ever noticed how good it feels to stroke when controlling the CB? Aint it feel good? /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

JimS
03-22-2002, 10:11 AM
My playing cue is no-wrap and I wouldn't change that for anything.

I believe that the no-wrap cues provide more feedback from the shot to the grip hand and, much to my surprise, they are less slippery in the grip hand. This has been proven through testing. I believe I read the results in Jack Koehler's book The Science of Pocket Billiards.

Q-guy
03-22-2002, 11:18 AM
There is no basis for your friends comment. Even if you took a poll here it has no bearing on what you like. You have to play with the different wraps and decide what is best for you. I would not order the cue with a leather wrap or no wrap if you don't yet know what you want.

TonyM
03-22-2002, 01:33 PM
There is no technical reason why you "should" use one wrap or another on a cue. Perhaps for esthetic reasons?

The choice of wrap is a personal decision. leather is an acquired taste. Some players love it, and others loathe it. It depends on the realive dampness of your hands. If your hands are particularily dry, then leather might be a good choice for you. On the other hand, if your hands tend to sweat a fair bit, then I would reccommend a linen wrap (to absorb the moisture).

Leather has atendency to become damp and clammy if your hands sweat a lot.

You should endeavour to try out a cue with a leather wrap before you make this decision.

Btw, it is easy to go from a linen wrap, but not as easy to go back. the thickness of the groove required for leather is greater than that required for linen. So make sure you know what you want before you commit.

Tony

TonyM
03-22-2002, 01:37 PM
"I believe that the no-wrap cues provide more feedback from the shot to the grip hand "

I'm sure that this is true. But I think that this is highly overrated. You are looking for the correct amount of feedback that works for you. This is not neccessarily the most amount, but the best.

Consider that most 3 cushion players use a rubber wrap on their cues. They need precise speed control (all shots are position shots!). Rubber provides far less feedback than a bare wooden handle, and yet that is what they prefer. obviously there are other considerations.

Tony

Kato
03-22-2002, 01:48 PM
It took me a little while to make my hand stop sweating but since then boy does it feel right. Very enjoyable experience.

Kato

JimS
03-22-2002, 02:05 PM
I hope my other post where I said that I preferred the no wrap cue did not sound like an edict. I intended it to come across as an preference/opinion.

What qualities do the 3 cushion players find in the rubber handle that causes them to prefer this type of cue?

JimS
03-22-2002, 02:10 PM
Umn....it took you a little while to MAKE your hand stop sweating??? How did you DO that?...had a little talk with the sucker...."HEY...HEY..RIGHT HAND....YEAH..I'M TALKIN TO YOU!! Now listen you I just can't have this sweating thing......"...or what? If there is a way to make a body part conform to my will then I got to know how to do that. The possibilities are staggering.

Kato
03-22-2002, 03:30 PM
Jim, I can't probably explain it without everyone in the universe thinking I'm Patrick but I'll try. I'm sure everyone on this board has a habit or ritual they go through before they play. I always wash my hands to remove all oil and sweat. Then I'd begin my playing and my right hand would sweat, not my bridge hand mind you, just my stroke hand. Mysteriously my hand stopped sweating without my knowledge. Maybe I got used to it. Maybe I'm a blathering idiot. All I know is my hand is dry and I'm not wiping it or using anything on it.

Kato~~~just a little strange, well, maybe more than a little.

JimS
03-22-2002, 03:36 PM
Maybe you just calmed down RJ. CC will have to be really on guard now that you have nerves of steel!

03-22-2002, 03:41 PM
It boils down to personal preference, but I might add that if your hands sweat a lot leather is the way to go. The reason being is that chrome tanned pigskin is used by about 95% of the cuemakers and really does not absorb that much moisture. Wiping the leather occasionally will keep the leather much dryer than Irish linen. The linen absorbs moisture and also holds it much longer than leather. Unless you let your linen wrapped cue air dry before storing it you will find that it is still damp the next day or even longer. The leather used by most experienced cuemakers is about .025" which is the same as pressed linen so there should not be any problem if you must switch at a later time. Another consideration is how fancy the cue is....I would say any cue with lots of garnish (ivory, silver,etc) deserves a leather wrap. With minimun care, leather will look better and outlast many linen wraps. When it comes time to trade or sell your cue, I can say with certainty that a leather wrapped cue will demand a higher price than one with dirty linen.

BrakenRun
03-22-2002, 04:02 PM
I am like Kato. I have shot with irish linen and leather and both are fine but prefer a cue without either. I guess this is why I have gone to shooting with sneaky petes for the last 5 years. Kevin

TonyM
03-22-2002, 04:18 PM
"but I might add that if your hands sweat a lot leather is the way to go. The reason being is that chrome tanned pigskin is used by about 95% of the cuemakers and really does not absorb that much moisture."

I see what you're saying Jack, but there is a difference between keeping the wrap dry, and keeping your hands dry. The linen does the latter, while the leather does the former. I personally prefer leather because my hands don't sweat, but if they did, I'd prefer linen.

"The leather used by most experienced cuemakers is about .025" which is the same as pressed linen so there should not be any problem if you must switch at a later time."

0.025" is the thickness of the finished wrap groove for linen in total diameter. So the linen groove is usually 0.0125" deep (at least for my cues anyway), so 0.025" is too deep for pressed linen. Been there, done that.

Tony

Kato
03-22-2002, 04:21 PM
Jim, don't tell C.C. this but between you and I................. my nerves are like jello, my will is like silly putty.

Kato~~~all that and my hands aren't clammy

TonyM
03-22-2002, 04:22 PM
"What qualities do the 3 cushion players find in the rubber handle that causes them to prefer this type of cue?"

From what I understand they use a bit of a different grip. The cue is held lightly in the finger tips. I high friction wrap (like rubber) allows you to hold the cue very lightly, and yet with great security.

I have a rubber wrap on one of my cues, and I find myself gripping the cue very lightly without even realizing it. By contrast, if I try to play with a cue that is wrapped in nylon, I end up gripping it firmly, because it just doesn't feel secure.

But keep in mind that many people find rubber too "sticky" for them.

Tony

03-22-2002, 04:29 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: JimS:</font><hr> Umn....it took you a little while to MAKE your hand stop sweating??? How did you DO that <hr></blockquote>

actually, there's tons of literature doccumenting bio-feedback processes where normal people can control all kinds of body functions just by deciding they want to. in school, i remember they has us wired-up and within a session or two most of us were able to vary the temperature on the back of our hands by a couple of degrees. zillions of people have learned how to control their heart rate, within limits. remember when we were kids, it was cool to learn how to wiggle your ears. just sit in front of a mirror and "try". sooner or later it'll move.

not unreasonable that someone could modify how much their hands sweat just by wanting to.

dan

Q-guy
03-22-2002, 05:57 PM
Leather actually encourages the hand to sweat if the player is at all prone toward this. It set up a horrible situation for the player if they have a sweating problem.

Tom_In_Cincy
03-22-2002, 06:01 PM
Irish Linen is easier to maintain. Leather is too easily stained or damaged.

03-22-2002, 06:24 PM
Tony sez.....
0.025" is the thickness of the finished wrap groove for linen in total diameter. So the linen groove is usually 0.0125" deep (at least for my cues anyway), so 0.025" is too deep for pressed linen. Been there, done that.

Yes, and if you remove the linen, the .025" leather will be a perfect fit.

Tony sez.....
Btw, it is easy to go from a linen wrap, but not as easy to go back. the thickness of the groove required for leather is greater than that required for linen.

Not if you use the correct thickness leather to begin with.

03-22-2002, 06:33 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Q-guy:</font><hr> Leather actually encourages the hand to sweat

Leather encourages your hand to sweat??.... I'll have to remember that but I would say it's more likely caused by getting in an game over your ability to win.

Mikey
03-22-2002, 07:12 PM
Hi David, do your hands sweat? If they sweat bad , you do not want a leather wrapped cue. I'm talking from experience, my hands do not sweat and I played with a leather wrapped cue for 8 years. A player I knew was interested in buying my cue and I let him shoot with it for a couple of days, but alas, he was a hand sweater and told me his gripping hand kept slipping. You really should try out the different grips to see which one is best for you. Irish linen has so many color- speck combinations, while leather is generally one solid color. Good Luck---Mikey

Q-guy
03-22-2002, 09:01 PM
Since you chose to take what I said out of context, so as to make a sarcastic remark. You obversely don't know from personal experience the answer to the question. My guess is you don't even play.

Barbara
03-22-2002, 09:05 PM
Did anyone have a leather wrap done by the cue repair guy at Leonard Bludworth's booth? The couple times I stopped by to see Tony this guy was working on leather wraps and if Tony says he does a good job, Tony knows, cause he sees a lot of custom stuff.

So how was the Cue guy working at Bludworth's booth??

Barbara

Drake
03-22-2002, 10:00 PM
I tend to focus on how much does this really affect your game??? Choose what feels best to you. It seems to me that a lot of the Professionals play with Linen, some with no wrap at all, and a few with leather. Choose Whatever floats your boat....or in this case...whatever keeps your stroke smooth and straight.

03-22-2002, 11:27 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Q-guy:</font><hr> Since you chose to take what I said out of context, so as to make a sarcastic remark. You obversely don't know from personal experience the answer to the question. My guess is you don't even play. <hr></blockquote>

Hey Q-Guy
Sorry you took my comment as refering to you specifically....you said leather encouraged sweating... I've never heard of that before....what little I do know about leather has nothing to do with making your hands sweat. I'll admit, I ain't no champion, but if your ever in Pompano Beach and want to test your skill here's my # 954-974-5614

Q-guy
03-23-2002, 01:18 AM
In all seriousness, If someone told you they had a hand sweating problem. You would recommend trying a leather wrap? If so, you would be the first person of that opinion I have run into.

03-23-2002, 02:11 AM
it's my thought on the subject that, if you keep a closed hand, both while you are shooting and while you are in the chair, that hand will sweat more. if you hold the cue with your fingers and keep your hand open while not at the table, it will not get as hot and will not sweat as much.

dan...just a basics kinda guy.

TonyM
03-23-2002, 02:13 AM
Jack says:

"Yes, and if you remove the linen, the .025" leather will be a perfect fit. "

If you remove the linen, the groove is only 0.0125" deep. So the 0.025" thk leather will be too thick. Am I missing something here?

Tony

03-23-2002, 02:23 AM
My hands are dry, I prefer a tacky grip. I thought leather would be tacky (Zam for ten years) but I had to hold it in my lap to stay damp and warm when not shooting. I broke even (WAY too many times) being down and first, coming back once my grip warmed up it made me sick. This is my personal finding for my own self. I found it better to never wash the hand that held the wrap during play, the dirt kept my hand tacky and improved my play as time went on. I then had a Kirshenbrock (sp?) with laquer fininsh. I found when I got in the final eight of a pro event the humidity in the room increased and caused too much slippage and match loses. I then finally went to linen, majority of all pros and for good reason, it adjusts with the conditions, and believe me the conditions do change alot (humidity) as you near the finals and the crowds increase, I prefer it over all other grips. I also at times add parrifin to the linen to add tack, and will heat up the linen with a hair dryer to bring out the tack caused by the wax. Coark was ok, difficult to repair and dried out too quickly. Nylon, probably good for fishing. BF Hey you two (QG&amp;JJ),settle down.

Rod
03-23-2002, 03:19 AM
Well lets see, adding up the numbers says, linen is cut at .0125 per side or .025 total diameter. Leather is cut at .025 per side or .050 at total diameter. Seems to me the leather needs a deeper cut. I read the earlier post that said leather was .025 thick. I don't have a clue on leather but .0125 sounds pretty close for linen.

03-23-2002, 09:18 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Q-guy:</font><hr> In all seriousness, If someone told you they had a hand sweating problem. You would recommend trying a leather wrap?

Yes, without reservation. For those that sweat profusely, leather is the answer or at least it has been for my customers.

03-23-2002, 09:41 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Rod:</font><hr> Well lets see, adding up the numbers says, linen is cut at .0125 per side or .025 total diameter. Leather is cut at .025 per side or .050 at total diameter. Seems to me the leather needs a deeper cut. I read the earlier post that said leather was .025 thick. I don't have a clue on leather but .0125 sounds pretty close for linen. <hr></blockquote>

I think I have the answer....the leather that I use on wraps is .025", the Blue Mountain linen that is the standard of the industry measures .025"-.029" unpressed. Depending upon the accuracy of your cut there can be some variance. I think there might be a misunderstanding in how deep the groove must be to accommodate .025" linen. I still maintain that .0125" is not deep enough to accommodate the .025-.029 even after it's pressed. Maybe Tony is cutting the groove for a nylon wrap. I think this thread is about worn out.....

Q-guy
03-23-2002, 12:01 PM
Have you ever tried the wrap, I think it is sold by Tiger. You wrap it on and finish it. The finished wrap is sort of suede in stead of the shiny type of leather wrap you often think of. I liked the way it looked. You are right about the depth of the under cut. I cut . 025. But I use linen en by S. Hurlbert it is thicker then the Blue Mountain and the finished wrap has a little different feel and look then the Blue Mountain. I like it much better. Some guys don't like I think because you have to wrap a little slower. You have to pick out bits of linen as you wrap that are caught in the string but the extra 10 or 15 minutes you may spend are worth it I my opinion. I have to add that the linen I am using I bought a few years ago. I bought over a 100 lbs one time direct from Hurlbert for $12.00 a pound. I assume the linen sold today is pretty much the same.

Q-guy
03-23-2002, 02:08 PM
I need to make a little correction in what I said. If you mic the linen it is .025 Thick right off the spool. I don't really measure the undercut. The lathe that does the cutting is very accurate and I take another .015 off in the wrap area. Because of the cutter there is not a defined shoulder the cue now goes to another lathe to cut the shoulder. I don't measure this. I do a trial fit using a piece of the linen I am going to use and when it is just above the cue I stop. I don't actually know what the cut is at this point. I would guess about .020. I then lightly sand the wrap area till it is perfect with the deeper shoulder cuts and wrap the cue. The linen is pressed even with the cue. I guess it may be posable for someone to cut at .0125 and press the hell out of the linen to get it even but that would make the linen wrap thinner and would affect the feel of the linen. It would have a hard feel. In my opinion.

Q-guy
03-23-2002, 02:12 PM
So there is no misunderstanding, .015 is the depth of the cut on one side of the cue.

TonyM
03-23-2002, 04:23 PM
"I think I have the answer....the leather that I use on wraps is .025", the Blue Mountain linen that is the standard of the industry measures .025"-.029" unpressed."

True. But the linen can decrease in thickness almost half of it's original diameter, depending on the amount of pressing done. (I press hard).


"I think there might be a misunderstanding in how deep the groove must be to accommodate .025" linen. I still maintain that .0125" is not deep enough to accommodate the .025-.029 even after it's pressed. Maybe Tony is cutting the groove for a nylon wrap. "

No I've never done a Nylon wrap. I do sand the wrap area a little bit, so I expect that the actual depth of the groove is 0.015". Still too thin for leather. If the groove was cut to 0.025" deep , and linen was wrapped on the cue, then there is not thickness left for pressing. I like to press the linen hard, and get a smooth wrap, but that's just me. Several other cuemakers that I know also use a 0.015" linen groove, so I'm not coming from left field here. We always have to cut the groove deeper for a leather wrap.

Maybe some cues do have a deeper groove for the linen. I'd expect those cues to use minimal pressing of the linen.

Tony

Voodoo Daddy
03-23-2002, 06:08 PM
Jack ...be carefull, Q-Guy has shot the nutz in on a few players in his day. I've know both of you for years...dont let opinions get the best of either of you, OK? BTW...I hate leather for a wrap, I still like cortland or cork for a wrap but will settle for Irish Linen.

Voodoo {aka}
Big Steve in Miami

Mikey
03-23-2002, 06:54 PM
DAVID, I HOPE A FEW OF THESE POSTS HELPED YOU WITH YOUR QUESTION, leather or irish linen, Please read the posts pertaining to your question and I hope it helps you.---Mikey

03-24-2002, 08:42 AM
Yes Mikey, this has been very helpful. I would like to thank everyone for their input and opinions. This has been very informative for me in helping with my decision.

03-25-2002, 01:37 AM
leather wraps can be stripped to .021mm, which is linen wrap thickness.
at .021, the variation in thickness throughout the leather is pretty consistant as opposed to a piece of leather that is stripped thicker.

03-25-2002, 01:45 AM
qguy,,,i sweat a bit more than most, and i prefer leather. the linen seems to "cake" after a while.

i also wipe down the leather before , during, and after i play.

TomBrooklyn
03-25-2002, 02:29 AM
I saw a chap at VF installing a linen wrap. I had never seen it done before. It was interesting. He put Elmers glue over the whole area, and then put the wrap on. The glue squeezed out in some places more or less. I didn't watch any longer, but I was wondering how he would clean the excess glue off. And I was wondering what the wrap is pressed with, and how long one has to wait after putting it on to press it.

TonyM
03-25-2002, 03:21 AM
"I didn't watch any longer, but I was wondering how he would clean the excess glue off. And I was wondering what the wrap is pressed with, and how long one has to wait after putting it on to press it."

I clean the excess glue off with a damp cloth. The wrap is pressed with a special tool that is like a clamp with a series of delrin or metal rollers on it. You open it up to a width that is larger than the cue diameter, place it over the wrap, and then while the cue is rotating slowly, you squeeze the rollers into the wrap and move it along the handle. I start pressing immediately after the linen is wrapped.

Any other questions?

Tony