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I Can't Believe How Much I Scratch!


I Can't Believe How Much I Scratch!

First off, don't tell me I'm shooting too hard. As you get better and want to get more than one thing accomplished on any given shot, you want the cueball to travel around for position and breaking-up clusters. I've studied many suggestions that say that cueball/object ball deflection results in variations on the 90-degree angle, and Dr. Dave's videos on billiards.colostate.edu promotes predicting the result with a two-fingered peace sign on most shots (30-degrees). What I want to know is .... Are there any geometric principles that reflect that bouncing perfect balls on a perfectly 2:1-ratio rectangular playing surface (with opening in the corners and midway, of course) will naturally lead to the cueball going into one of those openings? The most common example is whether a cut shot that looks to be "dangerous" has more than one ricochet that will head to a corner pocket. This seems to be a reason to use the "peace sign" estimation, where most ricochets go off within a 30-degree span. If it were just odds, roughly you could take the distance of the perimeter of the surface (e.g. 8'x4' table = 24'), subtract the combined widths of the pockets (2') and predict that any random ball has a 1/12 chance of going into a pocket every time it banks... or something like that. I'm tellin' ya, if I find out that the physics are stacked against me, I'm gettin' outta town! Right now I feel like I scratch once in every 6.

I Can't Believe How Much I Scratch!

Replies & Comments

  1. RayMillsRayMills on 8/7/2020 4:24:28 AM

    P.S.: And one more thing:

    Why does it matter that the rack of balls be tight for the break? Does a hundredth-of-an-inch between two balls mean that less energy gets transferred? Hard to believe....

  2. RayMillsRayMills on 9/16/2020 5:18:14 AM

    Regarding having a tight rack:

    Dr. Dave said to me via email that energy is lost with each collision of balls, and that if the rack is perfectly tight there is only one collision during the break! I don't quite understand this, and I asked him if that means that when I break a loose rack there's an imperceptible "cloud" of heat generated near the foot spot. He didn't reply. I thought his original answer was going to have something to do with throw.

  3. RayMillsbilliardsforum on 9/16/2020 7:01:12 AM

    I have the same issue. It's an ongoing struggle. After watching some videos, I've learned that there are common scenarios with a higher likelihood of producing a scratch shot if not played carefully.

    These are probably too novice/simple for your level, but I'll post here for others who find this question and need this info (though the first one might be of interest).

    How to Avoid Scratching in Billiards

    An instructional video by Andy "Magic Man" Segal on scratch shots and how to avoid them. He talks about "the scratch line" using a comparison to the foul line in basketball.

    Avoiding Scratches in 8 Ball Pool

    How to avoid common "scratch shots" in pool, by FX Billiards

    Common Scratch Shots In Pool How To Avoid Them

    An instructional video by "Learn Billiards", discussing the most common scratch shots in pool and how to avoid them the easy way.

    How to Avoid Scratches in Pool

    Video by Jaden Dupree (of Dupree Trick Shots) about how to avoid scratching in pool.

  4. RayMillsRayMills on 9/16/2020 3:49:28 PM

    Thanx for your research! As you alluded, I'll keep on in my quest to find advice, especially on scratches that involve at least one after-cut bank. I should probably appreciate the entertainment of the game when I scratch off of multiple rails and balls, in various orders....

  5. RayMillsRayMills on 9/20/2020 8:12:58 PM

    Hey, I found some more answers on why a tight rack breaks better. I searched AZBilliards' forum for "tight break" and found a thread started in May by "Cuecademy". It is found more efficiently by searching for "Why do gaps in a rack". Good discussion.

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I Can't Believe How Much I Scratch!

  • Title: I Can't Believe How Much I Scratch!
  • Author: (Ray Mills)
  • Published: 8/6/2020 3:00:41 PM