Selecting a Billiard Cue

Written by Easy Pool Tutor

As a beginning billiards player, most of you might only be using cue sticks provided by the billiards place where you play. However, if you want to really improve your game you need to have your own cue so you won't have the problem of having to adjust to the length of the cue or the weight of the cue or the diameter of the cue tip. It is important to take note (while you still don't have a cue stick) the type of cue that you feel most comfortable with. Experiment with different cue sticks. Examine the weight, the length and the diameter of the tip. After you've decided on what is most comfortable to you then you are ready to buy one.

Here are some points to consider if you want to purchase your own cue stick:

  1. First, make sure that the cue stick is straight and not crooked. Although most of the production cues are not crooked, it's always good to check just in case. You can do this by rolling the cue stick on a flat surface; if it is crooked then you will notice it right away. Another way of looking at the stick is to look at the butt end of the cue while pointing the other end downwards then roll it a few times and you should be able to notice if it is crooked or not.
  2. Cue Selection: Figure 1
    Figure 1
  3. Second, the weight of the cue stick. Typically, a cue stick weighs between 18 to 21 ounces. Find out what weight is comfortable for you and stick with it, no pun intended :)
  4. Third, the length of the cue stick should be dependent the length of your arm. Longer arms, longer stick. The length of production cues typically starts at 57 inches.
  5. Fourth, the most important part of the cue stick is the tip. It varies in diameter from 12 mm to 14 mm. Again, choosing what size tips depends on your personal preference. Simply make sure that the tip is round and not flat. Players who use a lot of english prefer a much rounder tip.

Break Cue, Jump Cue, etc

You may also want to purchase a "break" cue used solely for breaking balls. If you have even more money to spare, purchase a jump cue as well.

If you bought an expensive cue stick for your regular use, it is advisable that you do not use it for breaking as it shortens the longetivity of your regular cue stick. With this in mind, you might want to purchase a separate cue stick just for breaking or any other "special" shot (eg. jumping the cue ball, masse, etc).

Here are some points to consider if you plan to buy a break cue:

  1. Consider choosing a slightly bigger tip than your regular cue stick. A larger tip means more chances of making contact with the cue ball on your break. Keep in mind that since you are hitting the cue ball very hard and your backhand extension is farther than normal, it is difficult to hit the cue ball exactly at the center... so it makes sense that if you have a larger tip, the likelihood of a miscue is minimized.
  2. Cue Selection: Figure 2
    Figure 2
  3. As opposed to your regular cue stick, the tip for your break cue should be a little flatter. Like the first tip above, this also minimizes the chances of a miscue.
  4. Consider a lighter weight than your regular cue stick. This enables you to drive the stick farther on your follow through thus giving more speed on the cue ball. Although a lot of players will argue that a heavier stick will give you more power, I would recommend a lighter cue stick for the reason that I stated. However, this is a matter of preference. Use whatever is more comfortable for you.
  5. Consult with the cue stick manufacturer on which materials is best and more durable. Consult more than one manufacturer so you can have a basis for comparison.

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