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View Full Version : What is wrong about a softer tip?


Da Poet
01-31-2008, 01:09 PM
Most folks here seem to prefer harder tips and I certainly agree with the "feel factor", but I was wondering besides this, what are the main drawbacks to using a softer tip?

Thanks!

axejunkie
01-31-2008, 01:17 PM
They generally don't hold their shape as well and usually wear out faster than a harder tip.

Klopek
01-31-2008, 01:33 PM
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gajga
01-31-2008, 01:33 PM
I've been using an Elkmaster for years.

It maintains its shape well (I don't ever have to reshape it actually) and it lasts for months.

I think this thread should have been titled: What's different about a softer tip?

Klopek
01-31-2008, 01:40 PM
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gajga
01-31-2008, 01:43 PM
I have read a lot of opinions from players that think badly of using soft tips, so if someone likes them and wonders why all the bad press, the title is appropriate IMHO.

No worries...I don't really have an issue with the title. I'm obviously in the minority that prefers them.

Actually, I haven't used a harder tip consistently in a long time. I'd be curious to hear from someone that has extensive experience with both.

klockdoc
01-31-2008, 01:53 PM
No worries...I don't really have an issue with the title. I'm obviously in the minority that prefers them.

Actually, I haven't used a harder tip consistently in a long time. I'd be curious to hear from someone that has extensive experience with both.

I use a tailsman medium. I do not have to shape it as it holds its shape throughout the whole time I am playing with it. I do not break with it and it lasts me about 2 years. I play on the average of 20 hours a week.

Softer tips, I was constantly re-shaping. Tips only lasted about 6 months.

Klopek
01-31-2008, 01:56 PM
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gajga
01-31-2008, 02:09 PM
I would fall under that category. Learned on elks, played with them for about ten years. Switched to Talisman pro hard for about 4 years, went to Triangle, back to Elks and now using medium WB Talisman. Softer tips were mushrooming and changing shape constantly, very annoying, so I stick with harder tips now. ...

Yikes. I'd be scared to switch tips after playing with them for so long. The tip is such a crucial part (the most crucial part?) of one's cue that some experimentation does seem warranted...especially once you've gotten your game to a certain level.

I'm now curious what other benefits hard tips yield with regard to playability.

I don't want to hijack this thread though...

BRKNRUN
01-31-2008, 02:22 PM
Im not so sure Pros are dead against soft tips. I seem to remember a listing one time that showed the cue / shaft / tip used by pros and there were quite a few that had medium or soft tips.

I personally like as soft a tip as I can get that still holds its shape.

That has put me into the medium catagory.

The life of the tip (for me) seems to go from plays lousy when it huge and bulky...to plays good after it has worn down a bit....to plays like a slick brick once it passes a certain point.

I tried an experiment on a recent tip that I am going to try on a softer tip and see if it will hold its shape better this way.

I had a tip put on and after I played with it for a week or two I went back to get the tip re-trimmed. I asked him to put a slight inward taper on the tip..(much like the shaft)...not much...just a little inward taper ...I really liked the way it looked when down on shots, the way it felt in the fingers...etc.

I wonder if tapering a soft tip will help it hold its shape and keep it from mushrooming......

That would be the ideal tip IMO...a soft tip, but firm enough to hold its shape...

steveL75121
01-31-2008, 02:27 PM
I have tried just about every Tip for the last 20 years or so. I truly see the Elkmaster Tip is consistant (move Whitey easily) and I soak them abit before putting it on the Cue. They are not much to maintain either. Alot of my friends who have had other tips on their cues and then played with the Elkmaster I put on for them, swear by them now :-) Draw, Follow, Stun and Side spin just seem to be so much easier with these soft tips !!!

Da Poet
01-31-2008, 02:32 PM
Thanks for the replies guys.


Yeah, I knew about the wear and tear thing, but I didn't realize that a softer tip, under the right circumstances, could actually increase the chances of a miscue. That's very interesting.

I played in a tournament some time ago, and everyone, including myself was having miscue trouble. (occasional, but more than normal) I figured it might be the ball polish or something. I read on another post that someone changed their tip to a softer one and their miscues dropped considerably and it got me thinking, and posting.

Also, I have to keep deglazing and picking my Sniper tip or it gets a little slippery. (I think this is more local conditions than anything) I loved the feel of it when it was first installed, and it's hardened up a little since then and I gotta admit, I miss that new tip feeling! lol

I just ordered an extra 314-2 shaft and I asked them to put on a Kamui soft tip just to try it out. I also ordered one of each of all the other Kamui tips of varying hardness as well so I could just have a local guy change them whenever I want. Should be interesting. Hope they're labeled well. lol

rhncue
01-31-2008, 02:37 PM
This is accurate based on my findings.

Softer tips stay on the ball longer which causes more spin. harder tips are more accurate due to consistency

Sometimes with a softer tip, you will add spin to a shot that you don't want to. it differs from player to player.

Softer tips will give someone with a poor stroke more english as they are more forgiving than a harder tip as far as mis-cuing. Some one with a good stroke will get more spin with a hard tip than he will with a soft one.

Dick

Da Poet
01-31-2008, 02:44 PM
This is accurate based on my findings.

Softer tips stay on the ball longer which causes more spin. harder tips are more accurate due to consistency

Sometimes with a softer tip, you will add spin to a shot that you don't want to. it differs from player to player.

Thanks,

Actually the reason I'm responding here is that you've got this great picture of a girl on the bow a boat, but your "location" is on a golf course.

You must really like golf! :D

Klopek
01-31-2008, 02:47 PM
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andywho
01-31-2008, 02:57 PM
i play with a moori soft and it doesn't need shaping at all. it gives me a great spin advantage and i seem to like the feed back that i get. Kamui i'm going to try with my dominiak

steveL75121
01-31-2008, 02:57 PM
Efren Reyes even Loves the Elkmaster Tips !!! Thread Done !!! LOL

SUPERSTAR
01-31-2008, 03:05 PM
With soft tips, I can hit the cue ball SLOW with a LONG STROKE, and it does a ton of work.

If i tried it with a hard tip, it would slip off the cue ball in a heartbeat. It doesn't grab as much at slow speeds.

What ends up happening, is with hard tips, i have to hit the ball harder just so i don't suffer miscues from my slow speed of impact.

Which in turn changes the way i play. It limits my game cause there are certain kill spin shots that i hit softly (as well as others) with that i could never do with a hard tip

ragbug74
01-31-2008, 03:10 PM
I have heard many times that alot of the Filipino's players use elk masters, but they soak them first so they get very hard

Word is they press them under the leg of a table after whatever type of soaking they do.

Patrick Johnson
01-31-2008, 03:12 PM
... during extreme english shots [a softer] tip shifts and creates a potential miscue.

... harder tips will cause more deflection

...Softer tips seem to spin the cue ball a little easier

... I feel harder tips are more precise and accurate when making very thin hits or long shots.

...Draw, Follow, Stun and Side spin just seem to be so much easier with these soft tips !!!

...Softer tips stay on the ball longer which causes more spin

...harder tips are more accurate due to consistency

...Sometimes with a softer tip, you will add spin to a shot that you don't want to.

...Softer tips will give someone with a poor stroke more english as they are more forgiving than a harder tip as far as mis-cuing.

...Some one with a good stroke will get more spin with a hard tip than he will with a soft one.

The one unarguable truth seems to be that nobody really knows.

But just to add my 3 cents: Assuming you keep your tip well groomed and chalked, I don't believe that tip hardness has much to do with spin or miscues. The one thing that seems clear (and logical) is that softer tips will change shape and hardness more than harder tips do over the life of the tip, for whatever that's worth (mostly feel, I think).

pj
chgo

steveL75121
01-31-2008, 03:15 PM
Soak those tips (Elkmaster) a couple days in vitiman D milk . It helps them hold form a tad bit longer before breaking down :-)

Don't let these guys fool you about hard tips. Talk about mis -cues. Harder to shoot slow and be consistant. Sure maybe a couple top pro's in the world
might use them but that's about it.

BRKNRUN
01-31-2008, 03:17 PM
Efren Reyes even Loves the Elkmaster Tips !!! Thread Done !!! LOL


Well then...If you go by this thread...He probably has a poor stroke and needs the softer tip so he can get more spin. :rolleyes:

BRKNRUN
01-31-2008, 03:20 PM
Frankly.....The hard vs soft tip perception in Pool seems to be akin to the stiff shaft vs regular shaft or 7.5 degree vs 11.5 degree driver in Golf.


Rank ameatuers all want the low loft stiff shaft clubs cause they think that it makes them a "player"...when in reality if you looked at the label on many a touring pros irons you would see R-400 on the shaft.

Patrick Johnson
01-31-2008, 03:21 PM
Klopek:
Personally a few benefits I've noticed when using harder tips.

1. Sound - I like the crisper "toink" a harder tips provides. Softer tips have more of a dull thud which I find offers less feedback.

2. Response - I can feel more of the hit through a harder tip as it doesn't absorb as much energy as a soft tip.

3. Consistency - Over a game, softer tips can pick up temporary flat spots caused by a really hard shot prior. You try to soft role a shot and find this bad spot, could affect accuracy. Hard tips are less prone to develop these imperfections over the course of an evening.

4. Lifespan - Because softer tips are more porous, they will compact more. They will either become undesirable to play with or too thin to continue using.

5. Break-In. Softer tips require longer to break in. A hard tip will play the way you need it to right away.

Wow. I agree with almost all of this. Whodathunkit?

pj
chgo

steveL75121
01-31-2008, 03:25 PM
yeah I guess you know best if you think Efren has a bad stroke ;) ;)

BVal
01-31-2008, 03:26 PM
Please name the guys that play R-400's. At least name the guys who are under 45 years old that do.

I bet there are near as many as you think. the average SS for the PGA tour with a driver is over 115 mph, many of the top players approach 125 and up

Which would put them in X flex shafts.
I use the FU24-7's and love em :D:D:D:D

BVal

BRKNRUN
01-31-2008, 03:57 PM
Please name the guys that play R-400's. At least name the guys who are under 45 years old that do.

I bet there are near as many as you think. the average SS for the PGA tour with a driver is over 115 mph, many of the top players approach 125 and up

Which would put them in X flex shafts.


Never said what specific tour I just said PRO...and your right .... a significant portion will be over 45 and or produce swing speeds lower than 110.....I can't name any names as I don't keep a list of what they are using.....That really was not the point of my response though...(keep reading)

The point of my prior post was that quite a few rank ameatures "think" they need stiff shafts and low lofts becuase "thats what the pros use" or that is what deems you a "player"

Your dead on that quite a few PGA pros have swing speeds in the 115-125 range...

The fact of the matter is that there are many ameatures in Golf that only "think" they have swing speeds that high...or wish they had swing speeds that high....most of them are in the range of 105 if they are swinging with any kind of control. There is a thread on break speed somwhere a few pages back now....Did you notice the trend of players that thought they had big breaks and break speeds in the mid 20s only to find out when they got gunned that it was 18....

Perhaps pool players that use more power shots or just shoot hard in general will prefer a harder tip......and players that use softer smoother strokes may prefer a soft tip.....That does not mean that the softer smoother shooter that prefers a soft tip has a "poor" stroke.......

My intended point was that just as in golf with the stiff shaft and low lofts....The ego seems to take over and rank ameatures seem to think that if they don't use a hard tip they are not a "player" ;)

Vahmurka
02-01-2008, 08:07 AM
Word is they press them under the leg of a table after whatever type of soaking they do.aha, heard the same when I was there in Manila

Duane Remick
02-01-2008, 08:11 AM
Most folks here seem to prefer harder tips and I certainly agree with the "feel factor", but I was wondering besides this, what are the main drawbacks to using a softer tip?

Thanks!
Tips, Like cues, are personal preference...ALOT of players insist on Steel jointed cues with hard tips, they like it, ALOT of players use a meucci with a Elkmaster tip, itss what they like...
Try the different tips/cues as youy are able to,,,make a decision what works best for you"
NOTHING WRONG WITH A SOFT TIP...ask Cliff Joyner:D He usually plays with a meucci and soft elkmaster tip

Flex
02-01-2008, 08:22 AM
Nothing wrong with a soft tip, just pound it 250 times with a cue ball to put the final finishing touches to shape it, perhaps trim it then, scuff it a bit or tip pik it, chalk it, and fire away...

Flex

JoeyA
02-01-2008, 08:53 AM
Well then...If you go by this thread...He probably has a poor stroke and needs the softer tip so he can get more spin. :rolleyes:

OR, he has his Elkmaster tips compressed in a vice or other device.
:rolleyes:
JoeyA

JoeyA
02-01-2008, 08:55 AM
Wow. I agree with almost all of this. Whodathunkit?

pj
chgo

Both of you must be using thin diameter, needle-like shafts. :rolleyes:
JoeyA

Scott Lee
02-01-2008, 11:56 AM
BPG24...This is a myth. The contact time between the tip and CB is between 1/1000th and 2/1000th's of A SECOND. Nothing changes that, not even a soft tip. This was proven by the Jacksonville Experiments, where they did super high-speed photography (4,000-12,000 frames per second), using all manner of shafts, tips, and even a stroke robot.

Scott Lee
www.poolknowledge.com

[QUOTE=BPG24]Softer tips stay on the ball longer which causes more spin.QUOTE]

JoeyA
02-01-2008, 01:31 PM
BPG24...This is a myth. The contact time between the tip and CB is between 1/1000th and 2/1000th's of A SECOND. Nothing changes that, not even a soft tip. This was proven by the Jacksonville Experiments, where they did super high-speed photography (4,000-12,000 frames per second), using all manner of shafts, tips, and even a stroke robot.

Scott Lee
www.poolknowledge.com

[QUOTE=BPG24]Softer tips stay on the ball longer which causes more spin.QUOTE]

I could have sworn that I read from one of the fellows that did the experiment that they said they did not use all manners of tips/try a lot of different tips. Maybe I read what I wanted to read......
JoeyA

rhncue
02-01-2008, 02:14 PM
BPG24...This is a myth. The contact time between the tip and CB is between 1/1000th and 2/1000th's of A SECOND. Nothing changes that, not even a soft tip. This was proven by the Jacksonville Experiments, where they did super high-speed photography (4,000-12,000 frames per second), using all manner of shafts, tips, and even a stroke robot.

Scott Lee
www.poolknowledge.com

[QUOTE=BPG24]Softer tips stay on the ball longer which causes more spin.QUOTE]

Well I guess you read differently than I did as that's where I got my information on hard versus soft tips as far as english application is concerned. What I read was that a softer tip held onto the ball a little longer so as to slow the rotation down some. Where's Bob Jewitt when he's needed.

Dick

Klopek
02-01-2008, 03:05 PM
0000000000

Scott Lee
02-01-2008, 03:12 PM
Dick...The difference between tip hardnesses, and contact time with the tip, is measured in one or two 1/1000th's of a second...not enough time differential to have any appreciable physical, or tactile difference in the end result. I'm sure Bob will chime in at some point. That's not to say that some folks will still maintain that THEY can tell a difference.

Scott Lee
www.poolknowledge.com

Well I guess you read differently than I did as that's where I got my information on hard versus soft tips as far as english application is concerned. What I read was that a softer tip held onto the ball a little longer so as to slow the rotation down some. Where's Bob Jewitt when he's needed.

Dick

ShootingArts
02-01-2008, 04:59 PM
Dick...The difference between tip hardnesses, and contact time with the tip, is measured in one or two 1/1000th's of a second...not enough time differential to have any appreciable physical, or tactile difference in the end result. I'm sure Bob will chime in at some point. That's not to say that some folks will still maintain that THEY can tell a difference.

Scott Lee
www.poolknowledge.com


Scott,

I have often seen these claims about a hard tip and a soft tip. I have also seen high speed images of a tennis ball in collision with the ground and pool balls in collision with each other. No question that the softer tennis ball maintains contact with what it hits far longer.

So the question is, what is the difference in time a hard tip and a soft tip stays on a cue ball when maximum side is applied when expressed as a percentage? Say two tips of side for this discussion or any offset that actual numbers are available for.

Hu

JoeyA
02-01-2008, 06:01 PM
Huh?.:confused:

What does shaft diameter have to do with tip hardness?. I use 12.75 on my main player and 13mm on everything else.

that was just a tease aimed at Pat. Bad aim. Sorry.
JoeyA

DaveK
02-01-2008, 06:30 PM
The one unarguable truth seems to be that nobody really knows.


Yet. This relatively simple concept cannot withstand scientific curiosity forever ... imo.

Dave

Patrick Johnson
02-01-2008, 07:29 PM
the question is, what is the difference in time a hard tip and a soft tip stays on a cue ball when maximum side is applied when expressed as a percentage? Say two tips of side for this discussion or any offset that actual numbers are available for.

I think the Jax Tapes did show an increase in contact time with more sidespin, at least up to a point. The ball continues to rotate while the tip is in contact with it, and it might start sliding (miscueing) sooner if contact starts close to the miscue limit, so contact time might be maximized with a starting offset of less than maximum.

I think it also makes sense that a softer tip will stay in contact longer, and I think this is generally considered to be true by knowledgable people.

As Scott said, the Jax Tapes showed a range of 1 ms to 2 ms, a 100% increase, but I don't know if it was determined how much of the extended contact was due to softer tips vs. amount of offset.

pj
chgo

Patrick Johnson
02-01-2008, 07:33 PM
that was just a tease aimed at Pat. Bad aim. Sorry.
JoeyA

Not really bad aim, Joey, just not pinpoint.

pj
chgo

dr9ball
02-18-2008, 12:36 AM
I've played with Mori's, Tailsman Mediums, Triangle, Le Pro, and Triumph.

I can't say that one is much better than the other. For the cost you can put on 10 of the single layer tips for one of the laminated tips. They may not last as long but they are easy to burnish and trim off any mushrooming that may ocurr. The best tip for the price in my book is either aTriumph or a Triangle.

The Triumph is a Medium tip while the Triangle is in the Medium Hard range. Both play well for me. I don't mind changing them when they wear down, I've been retipping my own cues and others for the better part of 20 years now.

If you think spending $12 on a tip or up to $30 for a tip including installiation, makes you play better good for you and great for the tip makers.

Mosconi ran 526 what kind of tip did he use?


Just my opinion,

Rufus

3andstop
02-18-2008, 01:47 PM
IMO, as with most things in life there are usually extremes on both ends of the spectrum in terms of usability / functionality. I prefer a middle of the road tip hardness.

There is another philosophy and logic you could apply however. It is .....

If it's true that a harder tip is better, then a tip thats too hard must be Juuusst right! :D