Talk:Cue stick

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Rewording?[edit]

Resolved: Article edited as requested.

From article:

"The important factor when picking a cue is that it feels balanced to you and the weight and length give you confidence at the table. An irish linen wrap on the pool cue is nice as it give you a nice grip, and absorbs moisture from your hand. Irish Linen historically came from fishing line manufacturers in Ireland."

Encyclopedias never refer to the person reading them, the article needs to be reworded again. --Mattwolf7 (00:40, 21 Jan 2004)

This was in reference to the article as it was three years ago, so I'm marking this "Resolved". Any further concerns with article text should be raised in new topics. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 09:01, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

The article is about "cue stick" within the scope of billiards, snooker, and other games where the cue is used to strike a ball. There is at least one other common type of cue: The Floor (aka "Deck") Shuffleboard cue. I would be helpful to readers, for this article to have near the beginning, a sentence or short paragraph about other types of cue sticks. Can that be done? Thanks. I would supply some references but am unsure of how to do much of that just yet. PoorWIliam (talk) 17:17, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

Rename?[edit]

Resolved: Article renamed as needed.

Unless there's a difference between pool cues, billiard cues, and snooker cues, I think this article should exist at cue (sport) or some such thing... Evercat 00:59, 21 Jan 2004 (UTC)

There are in fact differences, as the article now addresses. However, they do not all need articles, so the article has in fact been moved, not split. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 09:01, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Improper move[edit]

Resolved: Content merged; no one cares enough to have admin fix the edit history, apparently.

Note that this article was cut'n'paste-moved from Pool cue --Improv 14:42, 13 Dec 2004 (UTC)

I have merged in the two topics that were at Talk Pool cue, so it's no longer an issue, other than the edit history doesn't go back to the true beginning. We'd need admin attention to fix that. — SMcCandlish [talk] [contrib] 09:01, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Picture[edit]

Resolved: Such an image is now in place.

Someone please change the picture, the cue isn't shown in enough detail it should have a cue with all of it's parts labelled. Here's the picture of a good one.

128.6.175.27 20:27, 6 February 2006 (UTC)

It shall be done. — ßottesiηi Tell me what's up 16:49, 8 May 2006 (UTC)

Cue Materials[edit]

I've never heard of a cue being made of carbon fiber or aluminum. They usually have an inner core that is wood and the outside may be some other material. Changed this, as well as added some more information. 128.6.175.27 20:37, 6 February 2006 (UTC)

This may no longer be true; bears further research. The new Hybrid brand cue may or may not have a wood core. — SMcCandlish [talk] [cont] ‹(-¿-)› 01:17, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

I have seen aluminum cues; beer companies give them away as promotional tools. I've also seen aluminum cues for sale in discount stores. I've never seen one produced by a "known" cue-maker. They tend to bend and become unusable. I've never seen a carbon-fiber cue, but I've seen cues with a wood core that is jacketed with fiberglass. These are usually used as house cues, since the fiberglass resists denting and rough use.Jayess (talk) 22:25, 25 July 2008 (UTC)

Improvement[edit]

I've expanded many topics as well as added some that I thought we're important. This article looks much better than when I first encountered it. Tell me what you think! 70.111.251.203 02:46, 26 February 2006 (UTC)

Needs to be thoroughly converted to good prose, not prescriptive talk - MPF 00:45, 27 February 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, it definitely needs major cleanup work as noted by MPF. Lots of material added, but "Normally, one wants to..." language is not appropriate in an encyclopedia: Wikipedia is not a how-to book or an advice column. Retagging the article for cleanup. Also, you did not provide any sources at all, so you have effectively endangered the entire article for deletion per the no original research policy. — SMcCandlish [talk] [cont] ‹(-¿-)› 01:17, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Spelling?[edit]

Resolved: Typo fixed.

Butt: "The butt of cheaper cues are usually spiced hardwood and a plastic covering while more high-end cues use solid rosewood or ebony." 'spiced'? or 'spliced' (I know essentially nothing about the subject). --204.112.214.216 23:23, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Should have been "spliced". Fixed. — SMcCandlish [talk] [cont] ‹(-¿-)› 01:17, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

"Feel"[edit]

Hit or feel are very important to pool players, but never quantified. Obviously the perception of cue vibration or resonance is part of it (maybe all of it.) But these forces are not measured. And clearly people's perceptions vary. I think the current section on hit or feel is a bit pointless, because the author did not even try to quantify what is being discussed - good luck finding any scientific discussion of the topic.

Hit and feel are clearly subjective making any discussion on correlation between cue construction and perception of the forces involved in a hit very difficult to discuss in an objective fashion. Manufacturers love to talk about the hit or feel of their cues; but once again, they can't quantify anything.

I suggest the whole section be truncated. At very least it should attempt to explain what is meant by hit and feel. Of course I can only speculate what is meant. It seems clear that the factors involved are the ability of the cue stick to dissapate energy, and resonance (both upon impact and immediately afterwards.)


I agree completely. "Hit" and "Feel" are nonsense concepts developed by marketing firms and their paid endorsers, as is the concept of "deflection" or "squirt". Having this sort of nonsense in the Wikipedia article just lends credibility to the advertising claims of cue companies without providing any real, usable information to the reader. Jayess (talk) 10:49, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Reword[edit]

Resolved: Rewritten.

"There are also cues that have more, notably three to five" three to five what? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 68.252.46.221 (talk) 00:23, 10 August 2008 (UTC)

Sneaky pete[edit]

Resolved: Restored, with source.

I've taken this out of the "construction aspects" section:

A high-quality but plain two piece cue, that looks like one-piece, run-of-the-mill house or bar cue, is called a sneaky pete. Such cues have a joint that is wood-on-wood, and barely visible. The subterfuge often enables a hustler to fool unsuspecting gamblers into thinking that he or she is an unskilled player with no regard for equipment quality or finesse, until too late.

Is this term really well known in the world of cue sports? I think not, but please put it back if I'm wrong. pablo : ... hablo ... 13:36, 21 January 2009 (UTC)

It's extremely well know; ubiquitous even. Of course, the entry was unsourced, as is the bulk of the article. I think I sourced Sneaky Pete's etnry in the Glossary, so if anyone wants to place it back with a source, visit there.--Fuhghettaboutit (talk) 15:46, 10 April 2009 (UTC)
Fixed. Rewrote it as well, to use fewer hyphenated phrases. — SMcCandlish [talk] [cont] ‹(-¿-)› 22:40, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

Cue maintenance[edit]

Moved this section to talk and removed the 'howto' tag from the top of the article. RJFJR (talk) 13:53, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

unchalked and chalked cue stick

After prolonged use of a cue, it inevitably loses its perfect smoothness, shape, cleanliness, and feel. Tips usually start to mushroom if they are soft and they start to hold less chalk. Ferrules become the "blue-ring" infested house cues in pool halls and bars. Shafts develop a distinguished blue tint and aren't as smooth as when they were new. The glossy and shiny parts of the cue become dull, oily, and full of fingerprints. Wraps develop scents of smoke and sweat, and may even start to disentangle and come loose. The butts of cues may start to rattle and the bumpers on the end may be absent.

Tip[edit]

Various tools are used to maintain the domed shape of the tip and its rough texture, enabling enough chalk to be held on the surface. First trim the edges of the mushrooming excess leather that is over the diameter of the ferrule with a knife, razor, or specially designed tool. If a tip is left mushroomed, the shots will be less consistent and may lead to more miscues and scratches. Also, imparting spin on the ball is less accurate as opposed to a well-maintained tip. Then reshape with tip shapers (such as Williards Tip Shaper, ATROX tool, sandpaper, or other tools) which reshape the tip to look like the preferred curvature. Finally, use a rougher sandpaper, a tip scuffer, and/or tip pick to roughen and perforate the tip, respectively. Scuffers and sandpaper are known to reduce tip size over time if used too liberally (periodically). That is the reason tip picks were designed; they poke holes into the tip so that there are perforations for chalk to be embedded into. This serves the same purpose in allowing more chalk to be held on the tip. Though these tools are useful, it is not recommended to use them too often. Usually one wants to "tune-up" the tip after it has started to mushroom, or poor performance is noticed, or before an important game such as a tournament. Using tip tools too much decreases the lifetime of the tip. Chalk is naturally abrasive to the tip and if chalked periodically (every turn), it should keep the tip rough enough. Tips should be replaced before its side wears down to not less than 1 mm from the ferrule. Using a tip thinner than this risks damaging the ferrule, a potentially more expensive repair than a new tip. A replacement tip generally costs from 25 cents to $25, excluding an installation service charge, which usually costs $10 or less.

Ferrule[edit]

Next item down is the ferrule. If one looks around at most house cues in pool halls and bars, one will notice distinguished blue rings around the ferrule (if the chalk used is blue). This is because of poor chalking technique. Many beginners tend to chalk their cues too hard and in a circular motion. In general this would be ok, but the problem is they do not know when to use a new chalk. Chalk should be replaced when it has a hole that is relatively deep. When people use chalk that has a large hole in it and rotate the chalk in a circular motion, it makes the ring around the ferrule. This ring is usually hard to get rid of unless taken care of early. Different chalks have different stain factors and powdery breakdown that can determine how hard it is to remove the stain. For light stains, one can quickly wipe it away with the fingers or a tissue; it is best to refrain from using damp products near a cue because if moisture gets into the wood it can ruin it due to the expansion and contraction of the water. Certain cleaning products can also be used to clean the stain, but it is best to prevent the stain in the first place. When chalking, one should do a light circular motion as well as scraping the whole chalk cube across points that are not covered well with chalk. Done correctly over a substantial time, the chalk has a shallow hole and is relatively flat. This is because one is chalking lightly and not grinding the chalk into the tip, as well as scraping, so that even if there were high walls around the deep hole, they would wear down after some time.

Shaft[edit]

A heavy chalker will usually also have a blue tint shaft (from blue chalk, other colors for other colored chalk). Exceptionally powdery or stainable chalks trickle down from the tip down to the shaft and as one strokes, one spreads the chalk on the shaft and stain it over time. This cannot be helped in some places where it is dirty and players place chalk incorrectly on the table, thus getting it on the hands and table cloth even more. After chalking the cue, one should place the chalk facing up so that the process of putting the chalk down does not fling powdered chalk onto the table, thus lessening the amount that gets on the hands and subsequently on the cue, or put it in a pouch (snooker players). Good chalk etiquette also lessens chalk on the table cloth, which can damage the cloth over time by the balls rolling and carrying chalk with it as it rolls and cuts microfibers in the cloth, eventually giving it a fuzzy feel. Basically it will prolong the life of the pool table as well. To clean the shaft after it has been stained, use a very slightly damp cloth/tissue and wipe it down and then dry it right away. That should remove surface stains, but if the stains have gone without care for a long time, one may need to use very fine sandpaper and/or steel wool, or even a toned down (household)vinegar solution. This will actually remove a tiny layer on the shaft and get rid of the stain, but it will also open up the pores in the wood of the shaft to be more susceptible to future staining or damage, which is why one should burnish the wood to close up the pores. This is a home remedy, and is not as good as a professional cleanup on a cue lathe. These methods are also good for regaining the smoothness lost from dirty hands, chalk, and dirt buildup on the shaft. Another way to keep the shaft clean is to keep the hands clean by washing them frequently, since hands usually get sweaty after playing for a long period of time. Some players like to bring a towel with them to tournaments, allowing for them to wipe their hands as well as wipe down their cue; tissues and napkins work just as well if they are clean. One might even bring two small towels: one wet, the other dry.

Joint[edit]

A cue's joint sometimes is not perfectly sealed and can get moisture in the wood if it is exposed. In humid areas with large temperature changes, this might ruin the joints and thus the cue itself. To protect the joints, one can purchase a cue case or joint protectors that cover the joints for added protection. Joints are also a frequent place where grease is attracted, especially in brass versions. To remove this grease, fine wool wire can be used (grade 0-0), or simply Brasso(tm). A bit of graphite (pencil) is put on the male end, to prevent any loud squeeks.

Butt[edit]

The butt end of the cue requires the least amount of maintenance because players do not touch it much outside the wrap. A quick wipedown with a slightly damp cloth on the areas with a wood finish (not the wrap) followed by a dry wipedown should get rid of any dirt, oil, and fingerprints. Using a bit of linseed oil prevents it from becoming brittle. The wrap may smell or become loose. The smell is from wherever one plays as well as sweaty or dirty hands. Although it cannot be washed, it can be replaced. As with the other maintenance issues, prevention is better than replacement of a cue part. Certain materials for the wrap fare better than others. For instance, Irish Linen will not loosen like other wrap materials because it gets stronger as it gets wet.

Rattling butts may be due to bad construction or the joint needs some attention. It could also be a loose weight inside the butt, a crack in the butt end or the cue may just require a new tip. It should not affect game play except psychologically.

Preventing the loss of bumper is easy; do not play around with them and they should not come loose. If a bumper does become loose, tighten it up again, possibly using a screwdriver.

Cue care in general[edit]

To minimize the risk of warping, a cue stick should not be leaned on its tip against anything, and it should be kept in a place that varies little in temperature. Normally, a cue is kept in a soft or hard cue case for easy transport and protection from moisture, the elements, and sudden temperature changes. An abrasive sandpaper should not be used on a cue with a protective finish, as this will scratch or remove it. Every 12 months or so it is advisable to apply a little raw linseed oil on the shaft and wipe dry after leaving overnight.

Pivot points[edit]

Moved to talk as unreferenced (and possible howto) RJFJR (talk) 13:56, 27 October 2012 (UTC) Each shaft has its own "pivot point" which is directly determined by the amount of cue ball deflection or "squirt" it produces. The calculated pivot point for each shaft is measured from the front of the tip. If one bridges exactly at a shaft's pivot point and holds the bridge very steady, one can pivot the cue by moving one's back hand and no matter where one strikes the cue ball it will track off on the same line as if struck dead center. Pivot points are interesting and may be useful but the player must also consider "swerve" and "throw". Swerve is the tendency of the cue ball to curve slightly in the direction of the applied sidespin, like a mild form of massé. Throw is caused by the friction between the cue ball and the object ball and is much stronger than most realize – for example, if one shoots a straight in shot firmly with left spin and hit the back of the pocket, if a snapshot could be taken at the moment the cue ball contacts the object ball one would see that the balls are actually aligned significantly to the left of the center of the pocket. There is a popular "pivot point test" that uses this sort of straight shot to determine pivot points but because the throw effect was not considered people have been getting wildly inaccurate results. [10][dead link]


In other sports and games[edit]

Moved to talk, is this really the kind of cue the article is about? RJFJR (talk) 13:56, 27 October 2012 (UTC) Small cue sticks are also used in the tabletop puck game novuss and other cued variants of carrom.

A shuffleboard game being prepared, with shovel-like cues

In deck shuffleboard long cues are used to propel pucks down the court. Unlike billiard cues, but more like the ancestral mace, the shuffleboard cue features a broad head, used for shoving, but not striking. The head is sometimes similar to an elongated croquet mallet, but more commonly it is not unlike a small shovel with an edge that may either be straight, or curved in a half-moon shape to better hold and direct the puck. The implement may be all-wooden, or made of other materials, such as metal, plastic or fiberglass.