I’m sure you don’t want to spend unnecessary time and money by purchasing an inappropriate pool cue.
Therefore, you need to check several aspects before buying the best pool stick according to your budget.
Below I have listed the most important aspects to consider. This will help you buy the best pool cue amazon.
Most of the billiard cue performance comes from the shaft, and the first six inches are the most important ones.
The diameter of the first six inches can range from 0.38 to 0.4inches.
The ferrule and tip –
Ferrule- the ferrule is a small white piece located below the tip.
The function of the ferrule is to protect the taper. This is also the thinnest part of your best pool cues.
Its other function is to facilitate the installation of the tip.
The traditional American pool ferrule is milky white, while black is more popular in Canada.
Generally, the length of the ferrule ranges from 0.5 inches to 1.25 inches.
The material of ferrule –
The types of ferrule materials include antler, ivory, reinforced plastic, synthetic resin, synthetic fiber, melamine, among others.
Considering the cost, most low-cost ferrules such as synthetic fibers or resins are common in mass-produced cues.
High-priced custom best pool cues, on the other hand, usually feature other high-cost materials such as ivory.
Ferrules made of ivory are the least likely to be stained with cue chalk, but they are also the most likely to crack and break.
Besides, due to the high-water content of ivory, there will be thermal expansion and contraction (the same goes for the ivory joint).
Some cue manufacturers will install a thin black fiber pad between the cue tip and the ivory ferrule to protect the ivory ferrule.
Many hand-made cue stick masters insist on using ivory ferrule as their standard equipment.
The style of ferrule –
Ferrules can be capped or capless.
Ferrules in which the shaft wood is visible are capped and those in which it isn’t are capless.
Many best pool cue manufacturers believe that, by sticking the tip directly to the capless ferrule, the direct contact of the tip with the shaft will increase the shot strength and feel.
As for the capped ferrule, its advantages and disadvantages have been debated for a long time in the industry.
Some people think that the wood of the shaft (the wood inside the ferrule) will expand or shrink due to temperature changes and humidity, which may affect the power transmission between the wood shaft and pool tip.
Also, those who like to use ivory ferrule believe that the capped ferrule can prevent the ivory ferrule from cracking and breaking.
Tip of your best pool cues –
The tip is a small part where the best pool cue stick directly makes contact with your cue ball. The size of the cue tip can be from 0.43 to 0.55inches.
My suggestion would be for beginners to use sizes between 0.47 and 0.512 inches.
The type of tip you choose depends on how you feel when you hit the cue ball.
The tip is mostly made of leather.
According to the density of the leather, it is generally divided into three levels: S (Soft), M (Medium), H (Hard) and so on.
Some manufacturers classify the grades finely, such as MH (Medium Hard) with tip density between M and H or 2H, 3H, etc.
The soft tip is not long-lived, and needs to be replaced by a new one. Players should repair the swollen part of the soft tip and re-grind the flattened tip soon after playing.
However, soft tips also have their advantages. In comparison to the hard tip, the soft tip hits the cue ball for a longer time, which can enhance the rotation of the cue ball.
The greater rotation of the cue ball controls the range of movement.
When doing strong strikes, one important thing to note is that the soft tip will be more prone to dents.
This is not the case for hard tips, which you don’t need to replace often (it’s expected that a hard tip will last around half a year to a year), but hard tips are not easy to chalk.
After hitting the cue ball, the rotation speed of the cue ball is not as good as what you get when using a soft tip.
Basically, while a softer tip can increase the feeling of hitting the cue ball, harder tips can be used for a longer time and maintain the shape quite well.
Suggestion on cue tip of your best pool cues
We’ll now dive into some cue tips to make the most out of your best pool stick.
It’s important to note that most professional billiard players use hard tips.
General players prefer to use MH ~ H pool tips.
The reason for this is that the tip is not easily deformed and can maintain the consistency of the contact angle with the cue ball.
The diameter of the tip is 0.43 inches to 0.55 inches.
Personally, I prefer a 0.51 inches tip stick.
Some players use small pool cue tips intentionally, as they believe that reducing the contact area will provide more accuracy when hitting the cue ball.
The tip on the cue is considered one of the most important factors when making the best cue stick.
You should know that, from a batting point of view, a good tip is actually a better and smarter choice than expensive, custom-made cues carved with ivory, rare jewelry and complicated patterns.
I say this because many customers have no real need for custom-made cues, and this post focuses on helping beginners and advanced players find the best pool cues.
In order to find the best pool cues, two crucial aspects are ferrule and tip width; these are the most basic points you need to pay attention to when buying a nice cue.
How the shaft affects the best pool cues
In billiard games, we call the first 12 inches of the billiard cue the shaft.
The best pool cue stick consists of three parts – ferrule, shaft, and tip. The shaft of the cue is in turn composed of a tip, ferrule, and wood.
In general, the head of a maple stick is softer than that of an oak stick.
Additionally, the quality of the best cue shaft determines the hitting ability and quality of the best cue stick.
So now the question is: which factors affect the performance of the shaft? Keep reading to find out.
Some examples of factors which influence the quality of the shaft are the hardness of the tip, the material of the ferrule, the origin of the wood itself, the density of the wood, the hardness of the cue, the toughness of the cue wood, the weight of the cue, the manufacturing process of the pool shaft, the thickness and best cue shaft diameter (click here to understand the processing of the shaft), among others.
The best pool cue tip needs to be fixed on the shaft, and the ferrule must be close to the tip.
The following figure is a schematic diagram of the cue stick. You can take a look to see where the cue shaft is.
All the accessories are glued to the best pool sticks. As the graphic pool cues.
No glue should be visible, so if you see the glue on any part of the cue, it means that the tip is not good.
In the best pool cues, no glue can be seen, which is what makes ordinary cues excellent. The tip stick also needs to be perfectly connected to the cue ferrule to ensure the smoothness of the best pool cues.
You also need to check the shape of the tip.
A good rule of thumb is to look for a dome shape, which is the shape a tip of a perfect pool cue should have.
If you find a pool cue with all these features and in perfect condition, then you’ve found yourself the best pool cue.
Finally, I want to talk about how to determine if the ferrule is tightly connected to the shaft and the tip.
If you can see a gap in the joint part, or if there is glue overflow, and the ferrule is not tight enough with the shaft, etc, then it’s not a good pool cue.
Generally speaking, three things show the performance of best pool cue shaft: Spin, Deflection, and Squirt.
The performance of your stick shaft does has a great influence on side spin.
Spin (cue ball spin) –
The rotation strength of the cue ball has relation with the hardness of the shaft. When using skills like backspin, the cue ball will spin.
So now you ask: How much does the cue ball spin when it is hit?
That will depend on the bending degree of the pool shaft after hitting the cue ball. Sometimes, the greater the rotation, the more deflection when the cue ball moves.
The taper of the best pool stick is also an important factor in determining the cue ball rotation value.
Generally speaking, a longer acceleration shaft will make the cue ball rotate less.
Again, the greater the rotation, the more deflection you’ll get when the cue ball moves.
The dense and heavy shaft of the best pool cues will provide more rotation value and less deflection.
Therefore, players can make full use of the shaft wood and taper to show their pool skills.
Deflection (bending deflection as the cue ball moves) –
When the shaft hits the cue ball, it must be bent (the best cue is instantly arched).
Several players also believe this causes the cue ball to deviate from the original course when playing backspin.
Another vital factor that affects this phenomenon is the player’s stroke habits.
Other important factors which influence this include the stroke style, aiming with the best pool cues, strike speed, strength, the distance between the cue ball and the target ball, the intensity of the cue ball rotation, among others.
Squirt (the moment when the cue ball shifts when players put backspin on the ball) –
The phenomenon of instantaneous deviation when hitting backspin is called squirt.
Robert Byrne mentions the phenomenon of squirt in his two widely popular books on fancy billiards, Byrne’s Standard Book of Pool and Billiards and Byrne’s Advanced Technique in Pool and Billiards, two very popular books on fancy billiards.
The author says that, when using backspin, the cue ball moves away from the original aiming path.
When players strike the right, the cue ball will momentarily deviate to the left, and vice versa.
So my best advice would be to remember to correct the aiming point when playing pool billiards.
Now let’s move on to yet one other factor that influences squirt: the taper.
So, what is taper?
Taper refers to the magnitude of best pool cue shaft change, that is, the diameter gradually widens from the cue tip to the pool butt.
Generally speaking, there are only two types of taper: Billiard Taper and Pro Taper.
Pro Taper now dominates the majority of the market. Its diameter will not gradually increase until down the cue shaft eight to fourteen inches (usually 8 inches).
Something that only a handful of people know is that Pro Taper can be divided into short acceleration type (the diameter will increase after about 6 to 8 inches) and long acceleration type (the diameter will increase after about 10 to 14 inches).
To maintain a uniform striking strength at the front end, many best pool cue sticks are designed with a smaller taper.
Butt of the best pool cues –
We’ve reached the most attractive part of the pool cue: the butt.
The shaft determines the overall performance of the cue, but the butt determines the style of the pool stick.
Besides this, yes, you guessed it: much like all the other aspects mentioned, the butt also has an impact on the performance of the stick.
The butt contains forewrap (forearm), wrap (grip) and afterwrap.
The part from warp to bumper is called afterwrap (sleeve, butt cap and bumper).
The bottom bumper keeps the butt cap away from damage.
Although the pool tip and shaft determine the performance of your best cue stick, the cue butt is still an important component that you should definitely consider.
This is for all you beginners at billiards or players who sweat easily: the wrap can be a great source of help.
The wrap is a butt accessory for the best pool cue, which prevents the cue from slipping out of your hand. Of course, some exotic wood pool cues have no wraps.
Generally, the material of wrap is nylon, Irish linen, leather or similar cork. However, among these materials, Irish linen is considered the best wrap material. I think irish pool cue is good.
Irish linen wrap of the best pool cue provides a smooth feel without any interference.
Of course, if you sweat a lot, you can also go for the leather wrap. Leather wraps for pool cues will give you the ultimate smoothness.
Don’t forget to fix the wrap of the best pool cues smoothly and neatly on the pool cues’ butt.
The best thing about Irish linen wrap is that your wrap can be very firmly attached to the cue.
If you buy a pool stick with rubber wrap, then you need to check for greasiness.
Remember that greasy wraps will be slippery and this is probably the last thing you want as a billiard player.
The length of the stick wrap is generally fixed.
But like for every rule, this one has exceptions too.
For example, cue master Thomas Wayne once deliberately shortened the length of his cue grip (wrap) part to increase the space of the forearm.
This gives players the unusual performance of the best pool sticks.
Quality of the best pool cues –
Another factor to consider before you can buy the best pool cue is its quality.
The quality of the pool stick is related to the type and the birthplace of cue wood. Usually, pool cues are made of maple, and snooker cues are made of ash.
The quality of the maple is the key to the shaft.
Generally speaking, a softer shaft will be more flexible. Of course, sometimes pool cue is plastic or metallic.
However, it’s important to note that high-quality pool cues will not be painted.
Cue sticks are usually spliced by hand or machine, so you also need to check the joint. To check its smoothness, you can simply rub it.
When you buy the best pool cues, be sure to check the quality. On high-quality pool cues, you will not see any glue or stains.
Again, you can check the smoothness by simply rubbing the cue stick.
This way, you can make sure it is a good cue, an imagination pool cue.
If you don’t feel the cue stick is right, then the quality of the cue is not good.
Concerning the cue wood, some players think that maple, being elastic, provides a better performance than ash.
Ash has a nice enoughtoughness, stability and is not easily deformed.
However, maple is indeed more elastic than ash in some ways.
Weather is an important factor for a maple cue.
The performance of maple cues will fluctuate depending on the temperature and humidity.
This is obviously bad for the players’ billiard game. Therefore, you might need to buy a pool cue case.
Straightness is another major factor you need to consider before buying the best pool cue.
A curved pool cue will highly affect your level and can potentially make you lose every game, which I’m sure you want to avoid at all costs.
A straight billiard cue is what you want to go for. If you were to buy a new pool cue at this very moment, the cue would be straight. However, they bend with time due to use.
There are some measures you can take to prevent the best pool cues from bending.
Firstly, keep your cue away from high temperatures and humidity. This is not to say that you should put it in the refrigerator; a normal temperature is the best choice.
Also, don’t keep it on the wall – putting it in the pool cue case may be a better choice.
It’s easy to check whether your best pool stick is straight.
To do this, just hold the back end and look down. You will immediately see if the stick is bent.
When checking the straightness of the best pool stick, you need to hold the back end in hand.
After holding it like a shotgun, close one eye and you’ll be able to check the straightness of it.
The straightness of a new cue depends on the good finishing of the cue from the manufacture. Never buy such cues.
Size of your best pool cues –
The size of a standard pool cue is usually between 57 and 61 inches, and the height of most billiard cues is 59 inches.
Choose the right best pool cue based on your height, arm length and cue weight preference.
For instance, I personally prefer a universal 57-inch cue because I can choose the holding position.
A short cue may be a good choice for children and women who are beginners at billiards, due to their body type and weight.
You can also choose a short cue, which is ideal for small rooms.
If you choose a short one, you may need a cue rack. For a long cue stick, sometimes the stability of the stroke cannot be improved, and it might even reduce it.
Ordinary brands don’t provide cues with special specifications, so you might need a custom cue.
However, personalized cues are expensive. I would say the aforementioned pool cues are the best pool cues for beginners and average players, and even for advanced players.
According to data from the International Billiards Association, theweight of a beginner pool cue should be 18 ounces.
However, if you’re purchasing a pool cue for the very first time, I recommend using a 19-ounce cue. This is common for many players.
In fact, it depends on personal preference. For example, women and children prefer 16 oz pool cue or 15 oz pool cue.
The weight of the best pool cues does increase the hitting feeling, while the strength of the rotation depends more on the aiming, the integrity of the force, and the penetration force.
Overweight cues are sometimes difficult to control and can affect the stability of your stroke.
The earliest stick can be traced to Europe in the early sixteenth century.
The earliest prototypes of cues began with the scepter representing the powerful.
Once we play billiards game on the ground.
People did not move them to the table until the mid-17th century.
In the mid-eighteenth century, it was only an entertainment activity of the royal nobles, and it gradually became popular among the folks.
At this time, high-priced special handicraft cues also emerged with the movement of the billiards, especially the customed cues for the royal nobles.
Precious materials such as silver jewelry, special wood rare stones, and even diamonds, etc.
People set them on the stick to show nobility and artistry.
2. 1850 ~ 1929 The first golden age of the cue
Before the nineteenth century, most American cues were imported from Europe.
Meanwhile, the pool stick making technology was also transmitted to the United States.
Each had its own characteristics.
At that time, the entire industry was led by Brunswick and continued the patterns that were popular in Europe for a long time (such as the design of gorgeous colors similar to butterfly wings).
From 1850 to 1929 was the golden age of American pool sports.
At that time, Brunswick expanded its production lines to meet the market demand of about 400,000 cues per year.
Manually-made cues and mass production cues were also released.
Gradually separate the pool cue market.
At that time, many famous players used customed cue.
3. Brunswick, the birthplace of the earliest cue masters
With the rise of hand-made customed cues, consumers who like to play billiards gradually began to no longer use family-workshop cue.
Consumers’ preferences and requirements for blow performance have become popular, and consumers have begun to demand cues that meet personal tastes and needs such as weight, length, shaft softness, ferrule width, warp diameter, and winding.
The line style, the ferrule material, the joints type, the inlay material, etc.
Some celebrity cues also came into being, relatively well-known early ones such as George Britner, Herman Rambow, George Babushka, etc.
They all come from Brunswick Company, Once a senior technician here, there are also some technicians who have expired or left midway.
After leaving, their own brand will continue to make cues.
4. Billiards, the first downturn
From 1929 to 1960, due to the political situation and the impact of World War II, the U.S. pool cue industry did not make much progress.
However, it also made progress through the well-known handmade cue masters such as Herman Rambow, Harvey Martin, Frank Paradise, etc.
They continued to circulate in the market in a small amount, and even severely impacted the famous Brunswick’s cues at the time.
The sales performance plummeted, and the popular product in the market where only the names of famous handmade custom-made masters.
5. “The Hustler”, a classic that influenced billiards
Until 1961, The movie “The Hustler” (Langzhong) had a huge impact on billiards.
The pool industry was revived, the bar-room was sprung up and the cue industry flourished.
Celebrity Willillie Hoppe founded Brunswick’s, a leader in the equipment industry.
The new cue with signature endorsement became the most successful signature cue in the history of the pool cue.
In addition to the famous teachers mentioned above, more people have begun to enter the industry such as Eugene Balner (Palmer Cues), George Balabushka, Ernie Gutierrez (Gina Cue), etc.
Because they are mostly companies with only 1 or 2 people, they have limited production capacity and cannot meet market demand.
Customers often need to wait for a long time or cannot buy what they want.
Of course, other cue manufacturers also buried themselves in manufacturing and operating their own products and gradually emerged in the market.
From 1967 to 1968, Her man Rambow and Frank Paradise passed away. Another master, George Balabushika, also died in 1975.
Years passed, during which time there was a hollow phenomenon.
Then it was immediately filled by Gus Szamboti.
The most famous master of billiards cue making on the East Coast of the United States.
1960s celebrity Willillie Hoppe endorsed Brunswick’s cue, instantly becoming the most successful signature cue in cue history.
6. 1986 “The Color Of Money” pushes the cue industry to its peak
From 1960 to 1980, the production of cues changed a lot.
The main tools are planer, as well as clips and sandpaper.
Cue making tools: Carpenter’s plane (must use a plane, preferably plane + bird plane), ruler, G-shaped clip or F-shaped clip (fixed), woodworking glue or AB glue, all kinds of sandpaper, sandpaper holder, vernier caliper.
Models used for planers: Woodworking planers, one long and one short.
2. Diy pool cue – prepare the wood of your handmade pool cues:
Early preparation before know how to make a cue stick:
Generally, the wood of top pool cues comes from Canada, such as Canadian maple.
Choose a fertile field to plant maple trees.
When the maple tree grows to about two years and the diameter is about the arm, the maple tree will become the highest quality wood for making professional handmade pool cues.
The felled maple is first stripped of bark and then placed in a cool and ventilated place for about three months until the moisture of the wood has completely evaporated so that the surface is not easy to crack.
The workers scrap off the surface of the air-dried maple and then apply a layer of varnish to the surface evenly.
After standing for one month, it is planed and then coated with varnish.
Repeat the operation like this to allow the oil to soak the wood.
It is possible to avoid the occurrence of cracks and deformation as far as possible in future use.
3. General workmanship in post-production processing:
The essence of the entire maple is the inside part left for making the cue.
The next step is to make the wood into the best pool cues.
The entire machining process is carefully completed by hand on a precision machine.
The tapered cutting of the front section, the installation of the leather head, the installation of the connecting screws, etc.
The leatherhead, adapter ring, middle wheel, rear wheel, grip, etc. are all made of the highest quality materials and strive for excellence.
The final decoration process varies from brand to brand, some are plain and simple, while others are inlaid with ivory and other accessories.
This is how to get a handmade pool cue.
To make the best handmade pool cues, you should choose high-quality forelimb wood. And this is also the most important consideration.
Then you should make the forelimb wood straight.
In different manufacturing processes, it is necessary to ensure the strength and hardness of the handmade pool sticks.
Adjusting the precise center of gravity to match the density of each wood is important.
It is necessary to air dry the wood at different stages to achieve high stability of the best pool sticks, which are hard to bend and deform.
In the end, you can use different woods as decoration, among which to ensure the art of your handmade pool cues and handmade snooker cues.
So, where can you learn details on how to make a pool cue?
4. Here are some simple steps to diy a pool cue(on how to make a pool cue):
Diy pool cue display:
Choose the wood, this wood has been naturally air-dried for several years
The ash and maple woods are also naturally air-dried
Cut the wood into square strips, and then air dry
Rough machining into a circular cone by machine
Hand-processed cone, trim the ash to a taper, and then plan a bevel (draw the mark in advance with a pencil)
Cutting wood for decoration arrangement
Cues and decoration arrangements preliminary bonding
Fix the ball and decoration arrangement and glue them together
Hand-polished sand cone, polish the side to be pasted with sandpaper to make it slippery
To adjust the weight and center of gravity of the cue, drill holes in the last part of the cue to remove some wood, and also prepare the connector for extension after installation
Install the appropriate cue tip for handmade pool cues
Install a suitable pool shaft and rear handle connector
Sand the shaft with a whole piece of sandpaper
Measure the weight of the handmade pool cues
Inlay the trademark at the end of the cue/embed a beech wood and print the name by laser
Extend the connector after installation
Grind the head with a machine to even
Install and polish the cue head
Make pool cue: oiling and polishing the finished handmade pool cues
5. Workmanship and caution will add value to your custom handmade pool cues:
There is so much workmanship that can add value to the top pool stick, but I will speak about something that makes a difference.