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Tips on Buying Billiard Cues

by Staff Writer

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Pool cues on a rack

Playing pool with a house cue was fine when you were a kid, but getting your own billiard cue is a must if you want to play a decent game of billiards. Even at a pool hall, it can be difficult to find a straight pool cue and even tougher to find one that feels comfortable to you and helps your game. Stepping up to a two-piece billiard cue will provide a more consistent strike of the cue ball, drastically improving your billiards game.

What to Know about Billiard Cues:

  1. Weight of the pool cue. Most billiard sticks weigh 18 to 21 ounces. Heavier pool cues allow for more power in your shot, which also allows you to apply more spin to the cue ball. But lighter cue sticks provide more control of your shot.

  2. Billiard cue materials. Pool cue sticks are either made of wood or a composite of graphite and fiberglass. Many players prefer the feel of wood pool sticks and the ability of a wood cue to slide better through the guide hand. Composite billiard cues made of graphite and fiberglass have the advantage of being more durable, and they do not warp from moisture. The wraps on the back end of pool cues can be made of several different materials, but nylon and leather are the most common. This choice usually comes down to personal preference for the feel, but if your hands tend to sweat a lot, a leather wrap might be the best option.

  3. Construction of the billiard cue. Cue sticks can be one or two piece. One-piece cues are like what you'd find at a pool hall or bar. They are one solid piece of wood and tend to be cheaper than two-piece cues as the construction is very simple. Two-piece pool cues are considered the standard for serious pool players.

  4. The tip. The tip of a billiard stick is made of leather. Tips are available in soft and hard varieties and can be changed fairly easily. Hard tips tend to last longer than soft tips, but softer tips tend to hold chalk better.

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