My New Stick

Posted: November 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

It came!  My new stick arrived!  Let my improvement commence!

Before the 2012 BCA Western Regional 9-Ball Tournament in LincolnCity a couple months ago, I decided it was time to improve my equipment.  I have a Lucasi pool cue with the original maple shaft.  I bought it probably 15 years ago, and while the shaft is still in great shape, it is a simple wood shaft with a distinct grain.  As an engineer and a woodworker, I know that wood is flexible in one direction and stiff in another.  I believe that that inconsistency in flex added some inconsistency in my shot-making ability and limited my improvement.  Some of the other players might wink and say, “Well, Pete, maybe you should work on your (fill in blank) first.”  You can fill in the blank with numerous pool elements: stroke, timing, aiming system, banks, straight shots, long shots, rail shots, and so on.  Others might say, “If your stick is your problem, you’re hitting it too hard.”  Or, “Wouldn’t it be cheaper to get a new tip?”  And inevitably, someone will add, “You’d be better off just going bowling.”  (Ha. Ha. Ha. You guys are hilarious.)  In any event, I was convinced I needed something new to add some spark to my pool life.

So I headed to LincolnCity hoping to talk with some folks, try some sticks out, and maybe find a deal.  I talked with a bunch of people about the options including the Predator, Tiger, OB and some others, and remarkably everyone had their opinions (which flowed pretty freely!).  Eventually I came to the conclusion that for a B-Level player like me almost any shaft upgrade will probably do just fine for a bunch of years.  I checked in with Jessie over in her 911 Billiards corner.  She gave me some shafts to hit with and I test drove a Tiger and the OB-1, both about $200.  I had a knowledgeable friend test drive them too, and we independently decided on the OB.  The “deal” I got was not paying sales tax in Oregon.

It took awhile to get and I know 911 got tired of my breathless, “Is it here yet?” every week.  (Thanks for your patience, Jessie!)  It finally arrived almost 6 weeks after I ordered it.  And I’m pumped!  The fact of the matter is that I believe it will make a difference in my ability to make shots and more importantly, the pace of my improvement.  It removes any possible shaft flex inconsistency and replaces it with a hard, cold truth which I expect to hear every once in awhile, “It ain’t the stick any more, dummy!”

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