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Choosing a pool cue for experienced beginner

Choosing a pool cue for experienced beginner

I recently joined this forum, and I recently joined local APA pool league division.

I was playing around town with the house cues and think its time to get my own. I think I have grown out of the house cue, and need my own pool cue to take my game to the next level.

However, I have never played with any pool cues other than "house" cues. Hence, I have a few questions about choosing my first pool cue (not necessarily in order of appearance):

  1. I am money conscious and my budget for a pool cue is between $100 and $150. What are my options for a pool cue in this price range?
  2. The guy in the pool hall playing alongside me is a dealer selling pre-owned higher-end pool cues. He suggested that I wait and save a little, and get a cue from him for $350, that originally runs in the $700 range. The problems are:

    • I need a cue now, as I feel I need to play with the better cue, or not play at all. I can stretch the wallet and purchase it from him, but it would cost me not going out, bringing lunches to work with me and generally experiencing usual inconveniences surrounding buying big ticket item.
    • I don't have experience with pool cues, so I would not know how to evaluate what he sells. He said a name something that ends with "Gambler". The first word was sounding like "Meucci", but it is under question.

    He said, that if I get a pool cue in the $100 range that "I won't like it". I don't know.

  3. Where else in NYC can I buy pool cues?

I am inclined to go with my first options - $150 pool cues, and then see if I need upgrading.

Any advice, please?

Sorry about long stories, but honestly I am an inexperienced so I don't even know how ask the question correctly. I would appreciate any advice.

Choosing a pool cue for experienced beginner

Replies & Comments

  1. bratnikotingibson on 9/26/2012 8:30:10 PM

    Cuetec has some well made cues for a bit less than you are budgeting. $100.00 to $150.00 area. If you consider yourself an intermediate player, then that is really all you need. Go to a dealer and try out a couple and see what you like before spending any more than you have budgeted. I wouldn't invest $500.00 in a cue without trying it out first.

  2. bratnikotinZeke on 9/27/2012 6:40:56 AM

    I found a few decent sticks at "Sports Authority" in the 75-125 dollar range.

    One I recall was a Strickland model, another, a carbon fiber all black unit that I bought and used for a few years until I got my chops back after a period of never playing at all.

    Almost any billiard table sales space, even the "chains," have something you can mess around with to establish what various sticks feel like.

    Always remember, it's not the stick that makes a decent player, it's what's between your ears that counts.

    The stick never makes the shot. You do.

    If you feel like a better player with an expensive stick, there's a problem. The flawed logic suggests if a $150 stick makes you play better, a $300 stick would be better yet!

    Great example? Golf clubs. Half the people I beat in golf have assorted and unmatched clubs because they didn't like their (name any #) particular club. They buy a hybrid - or some other "non-conforming" club. Bottom line, they still suck - but have the coolest looking weird club in the bag.

    I especially like the player that says, "I can't hit my driver off the tee." And so they play anything but their driver off the tee. They fail to realize the reality of, "If they don't ever use their driver - they will NEVER be able to hit it"! Why? Because they never practice with it. It is in fact, a self fulfilling prophecy.

    Four things are most important: The cue stick tip. The shaft taper. The weight. And, the "feel." If your very tall or very short, length also plays a part in selection.

    Let us know what you decide and how t pans out.

  3. bratnikotinFenwick on 9/27/2012 8:00:30 AM

    Zeke makes some very good points. Is it the Indian or the arrow. I'll add my 2 cents.

    I always say pick up a Sneaky Pete to beginners. They can be had for $75. The nice thing is you can always upgrade the shaft. No need to buy fancy. Fancy don't make balls. Where to buy, online. Viking, McDermott or Billiard Warehouse.

  4. bratnikotinbratnikotin on 9/27/2012 1:24:45 PM

    Wow! So many responses. Glad I am here, thank you all.

    If any one or any many know of good dealers in NYC? I only know Blatt Billiards. I am looking for shops where they would give me advice kind of independently from whether I'll be buying from them or not.

  5. bratnikotinbilliardsforum on 10/4/2012 5:02:27 AM

    We also have a listing of billiard supply retailers, most of which would have pool cues for sale, in New York. Just click this link to visit the listing.

  6. bratnikotinbratnikotin on 10/4/2012 7:35:34 AM

    Wow... Thanks so much. I see quite a lot of places are near my work.

  7. bratnikotinMitch Alsup on 10/4/2012 11:36:35 AM

    Two additional things to consider:

    1. Your first cue will be a write-off. There is simply no way to teach a person how to handle a cue in such a manner that it will NOT pick up dents, contusions, and divots. However, in the first year or two of ownership, you will teach yourself these things. So, your first cue will end up all banged up and there is little anyone can do about it. So with this in mind, just buy something your eye likes, and your hand feels comfortable with.
    2. At your stage of pool playing, you can get used to any cue weight, any shaft, any shaft taper, any ferrule, and any tip. After you spend a year or so, this may no longer be the case, and it will take you time to adjust.
  8. bratnikotinbratnikotin on 10/4/2012 11:48:54 AM

    Mitch: I understand that. And I am not afraid of dents and scratches and from artistic approach would even welcome them. I even like to find a small dent in a paint on a cue but, so I can rest fingers on it. Feels kind of like "I got a hold of it".

    I am concerned for the cue to be of fine quality in a technical terms. So that it won't get crooked just from playing it. I am a soft player. Sort of a "slowhand" type.

    I am playing with a 7 year-old $20-stick. So far, its fine by me.

  9. bratnikotinDsmithBFL on 5/16/2013 3:44:25 AM

    Regardless of the brand of pool cue you choose, I would encourage you to take care of the cue.

    They are very delicate and one should tread carefully when handling them.

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Choosing a pool cue for experienced beginner

  • Title: Choosing a pool cue for experienced beginner
  • Author:
  • Published: 9/26/2012 2:24:03 PM
  • Last Updated: 11/17/2016 7:36:25 AM
  • Last Updated By: billiardsforum (Billiards Forum)