Before choosing a cue, you need to decide whether the sport you want to pursue is the pool, snooker, or carom. This article will give you some useful tips on how to choose a pool cue for a pool game.
More than just equipment, a cue plays a vital role in every billiard match, mainly pool sport, whether recreational or professional. Qualified billiards cues will help players perform better and significantly affect the final result.
So, when choosing a billiards cue, what factors should players pay attention to?
You need to consider five essential factors when choosing, including the length, weight, straightness, tip, body, and diameter.
Here are a few things you need to keep in mind.
General Information When Picking A Pool Cue
Before knowing how to choose a pool cue, you should consider your budget. This consideration is the foremost factor because these are available in an array of price ranges, depending on the wood material and the pattern on its handle.
Within each price category, the quality will also vary. Make sure to choose a cue in one of the following five price ranges that most suit your budget:
- Beginners level: about $20 – $50
- Experienced level: about $50 – $200
- Proficiency level: about $250 – under $500
- Professional level: over $500 – under $2,000
- Master level: over $4,000
Different Types Of Pool Cue
It usually designs into two forms based on different needs: one-piece and two-piece. So which one will suit you? Let’s glance at a few summaries of their pros and cons.
One-piece Cues – Home Use
You can save money with a one-piece type, but you may face some trouble taking it with you when moving from place to place. This one is suitable for players to play and practice at home or prepare at the billiard hall.
Two-piece Cues – Multiple Use
The two-piece can be coordinated by different shafts and cue’s body sections because of its detachable ability.
It may cost more than the one-piece, but it’s much more convenient because you can fold it up and take it with you everywhere. For that reason, professional players mostly choose this type when preparing for matches.
In common, whether one-piece or two-piece, the cues have only one central objective: to play billiards. So based on the need for use and preferences, you can pick the proper cue for you.
How To Choose A Pool Cue – A Thorough Guide
As mentioned above, five factors need consideration, including the cue’s length, weight, straightness, tip, body joint, and diameter.
Joints And Integrity
The first things to check are the joints and integrity. Ensure the tip, including ferrule, is securely joined to the top of the cue without cracks in the ferrule or cue top.
You certainly don’t want to see your pool cue pop some accessories or, worse, break in half during a match.
You can quickly check it out by twisting the connections several times to make sure you’ve tightened it.
This action is unnecessary for those using a one-piece one as it has no joints in the body. But you still need to check the tip of both types in case there are scratches or damage.
The tip is the most critical part of the pool cue because it determines whether the off-center hits, intentional or none, are successful or not. This tipping point is likened to the soul of the pool cue.
It’s crucial to make sure the tip is not too taught and covered fully on the top. If it is not, it won’t keep the chalk powder and grasp the cue ball well, which results in a miss-hit.
Depending on each person’s playing style, choose a soft, medium, or hard tip. But most new cues come equipped with medium tips, suitable for all playstyles at all levels.
You need to check the cue carefully before buying. It should be straight and have no crack.
You can check by holding the cue up high, close one eye, and use your open eye to look along its length to see if there are any bends.
Rolling it on a flat surface are also helpful. Choose a surface, such as a table, and roll them. If they do not shake too much, they are straight.
However, this method is completely inaccurate because the rolling surface is not guaranteed to be flat.
The cue will easily bend if it is not handled carefully and correctly. Therefore, you should consider the cue’s body length an air gun; there must be no bends at all.
The mass of the cue is essential because it will directly determine the force the player will exert on the ball. For that reason, you need to choose a pool cue with the weight fitting your age, fitness (height, weight), and purpose.
If you are a new player, choose for yourself a cue with a weight in the back that is not too heavy as it will reduce the power of the shot.
If you are a professional player and can manage the weights yourself, choosing a cue’s weight is not too hard of a task. You can select any cue’s weight as long as it makes you feel confident and comfortable when holding.
Diameter And Hand Size
Whether it is a two-piece or one-piece, the upper body (cue body) will also have a smaller diameter at the bottom (cue shaft). Therefore, besides paying attention to the weight, you should consider choosing the cue shaft suitable for your hand’s size.
Grip feel is crucial for players. If the feeling is good, the gameplay and results will also be good.
So, you should make sure you choose a cue that has the suitable diameter and size for your hand to have the best game match.
Besides the shaft’s suitable weight and diameter, a good wrap type will help the player have the most satisfying playing and practicing experience.
Because the hand will sweat when we are active and holding, the hand’s grip on the shaft will be reduced and, hence, decreasing the ability to control it. You can adequately fix this with some types of wrap.
The wrap helps players increase grip on the shaft body, minimizing the impact of sweat in the hands-on cue.
You can choose to buy one with a built-in wrap (one-piece cues or cue set) or a split shaft with a wrap (for two-piece cues).
In a billiards match in general and a pool match in particular, a high-quality cue will decide about 10% – 20% of the possibilities of winning. That is not too much, but we are sure that you will want to seize even the slightest opportunity. Above is how to choose a pool cue for players of all levels. Thank you for reading. We wish you soon to select a suitable pool cue and soon become a player not only professional but also more classy when participating in big billiards competitions.