The cue is a device for playing billiards. Billiard cue is composed of cue tip, ferrule, shaft, joints, butt, warp, and forearm. The billiards and cue have a long history.
1. Billiards was ever a royal aristocratic sport
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. However, 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. It began to use a variety of imported wood (wood outside the United States) for the butt, and then cross-matched with various wood to become other than domestic wood.
Various styles, other stone, ivory, and gemstones are also inlaid on the stick. This fashion has continued to this day. It increases the nobleness and beauty of the cue.
There are also many ways to join types such as Steel Joint (Wood Lock Teeth), Wood Joint Lock Wood Teeth), Uni-Loc (Quick Coupling), etc. Cue makers adopt them so far.
By the 1986 movie “The Color Of The “Money” sensation has pushed the billiards industry to its peak. New large-scale mass production cue manufacturers have invested.
In addition, computer laser engraving and lathe tools have been developed recently. This automates the mass production of sophisticated and complex cues.
Today you can easily buy your favorite cue as long as you go online. Looking back to the 16th century and so far, it has been quite different.