Snooker cues have a lot of mystique about them, but when it comes to playing the game of snooker it is the player not the cue that makes the difference. It doesn’t need to be hand made, John Spencer had a machine made cue with a nail for extra weight and won the world championship with it. The potting machine Stephen Hendry used a cheap machine made cue to win his tournaments in the 90’s. However the hand made cues do look good!
So when it comes to choosing a cue, find one 5 world snooker championship schedule you like the look of and practice with it as often as you can, so you get used to it. The weight of the cue can vary from 17 ounces (considered light) to 19 ounces (considered heavy), which weight you choose is up to you, but most cues are in the 17 to 18 ounce range. The length of the cue is usually 57 inches and that is adequate for 99% of players unless you are particularly tall or very short
To check if a cue is warped, the best way to check is to look down the cue with the butt or thick end to your eye and rotate the cue in your fingers looking down it all the time. Any warping will be immediately noticeable. The roll it on the table technique is not reliable as the butt end can cause the cue to wobble making a cue look warped when it isn’t, or the taper on the shaft may not be symmetrical.
For Snooker, the popular choice of cue is a three quarter split cue so you can put extensions on it like the pros do in the tournaments so they can use their own cue for those awkward long shots and don’t have to use the long tackle that comes with the table.
Pool cues are very much the same as snooker cues in the uk in that the tip size is generally 9 mm although some of the pool players prefer an 8 mm tip. Also the wood used for pool cues is usually maple (especially for American pool) whereas snooker cues are invariably made from ash. There is no real difference between the 2 types of wood when it comes to playing the game, so choose the type of wood you like. American pool cues have a larger tip, 11-13 mm as they use larger balls for American pool at 2 ¼ inches.
So what makes some snooker cues so expensive? The answer is the type of wood used, some are very expensive, and the amount of human labor required making the cue. The exotic bits of the cue are at the but end, or the thick end, and this is where the cue makers can differentiate themselves. Butts are made by splicing the different types of wood together to give a decorative effect. You can have all sorts of exotic woods like ebony, padauk and Indian rose wood and many more. These are spliced together to give different colored patterns and can produce delightful results. Also the butts can be machined spliced or hand spliced with the hand spliced option the most expensive as it requires a lot of skill to do.