Go Back   AzBilliards.com > Products Talk > Ask The Cuemaker
Reload this Page Old shaft wood vs. New shaft wood
Reply
Page 3 of 3 123
 
Share Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old
  (#31)
Ssonerai
AzB Silver Member
Ssonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond reputeSsonerai has a reputation beyond repute
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 337
vCash: 500
iTrader: 0 / 0%
Join Date: May 2018
   
06-16-2019, 08:08 PM

Quote:
What grade does Kiln dried receive
It's not a grade, but part of the spec to or quote from the lumber company.

There may be people who vacuum-dry wood for specific applications in radio frequency vacuum kilns. This is supposed to yield lumber with the least stress. It is often used for very dense exotics. I do not have any experience with it.

Conventional kiln drying can be done well & should include stress relief cycle(s). Some suppliers are more diligent about this than others. Some push their kilns to get product out. It saves costs due to less energy use and less time in the kiln at the cost of product with a lot of stress in it.

You might see a spec of "5/4 FAS sap hard maple, KD, Rgh, RWL. WHAD"*
This would be after a discussion with the guy at the yard to verify widths, lengths, and general quality that might interest you, say if it has mineral streaks or not ("sugar" on here).

As people have noted on here, this would not be the ideal way to buy cue material for someone who does not need it for lumber for other projects. If you buy regular lumber to cut up for cue blanks, best to go inspect it and perhaps buy at retail where it can be sorted board by board for grain density and run-out. You can talk a commodity/wholesale vendor into giving you most of what might be wanted for quality lumber except reliable grain run out & growth ring count. Which would be the most important factors for most cue-builders.

Dowels or cones cut for cue-making would be a better bet and you can ask if they are KD; or they might be advertised as such. You hope they are selected for grain density, straight grain, run-out, general straightness, & color. For hard maple you might even hope there is a semblance of selection for specific gravity. (that the vendor would not include lightweight/less dense wood). If it is KD, you hope they are using best practices to provide virtually stress free product.

My problem with "grades" in cue wood vendors is one guy apparently got up to AAA grade sometime in the distant past. So then the next guy decided "my wood is better" so he went up to AAAA. Someone else is thinking the same thing, so he goes to "AAAAA+++++Pure white OG insane growth ring count pure gold private reserve stock". I think i may have seen barbequed wood on here up to 6 or 7 AAAAAAAA's.

Is there an actual independent cue wood rating agency with rigid rules?

smt

*1-1/4" thick highest commercial lumber grade hard maple, predominently sapwood, Kiln Dried, in the rough/(not machined since being sawn into boards), random width and length, wormholes are defect.

Last edited by Ssonerai; 06-16-2019 at 08:23 PM.
  
Reply With Quote

Old
  (#32)
qbilder
slower than snails
qbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond repute
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 4,803
vCash: 500
iTrader: 19 / 100%
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Manchester, TN
   
06-16-2019, 08:15 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by CuesDirectly View Post
I do agree with you for the most part.

Lumber has already been graded long before we see it, it gets graded as it comes off the line. Further grading is up to the specific industry.

Shaft grading? Again, up to the individual cue maker.

The nicer the grade of shaft blank, the more money it is.

For those who care less about shaft grades, blanks are available for $6 each.

Get into some decent standards and you may pay around $10 each.

Graded shafts? Knowing good and well you will get nearly 100% usage from?

Top quality runs $26-$27 each and that is where my standards are.

What bothers me and it may bother you as well, people who spend thousands on a cue and it's obvious they got a cheap shaft.
It bothers me very little. What matters to me is what I put on my cues, not what you put on yours. If someone puts junk shafts on a cue & gets good money for it, then good luck to them for sustaining a reputation that allows them to continue getting good money for their cues. They'll pay the piper at some point. We all do. I find it best to pay my dues as I go & not worry much about what anybody else is doing.


I don't check PM's, please email me instead: sugartreecue@gmail.com
  
Reply With Quote
Old
  (#33)
qbilder
slower than snails
qbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond repute
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 4,803
vCash: 500
iTrader: 19 / 100%
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Manchester, TN
   
06-16-2019, 10:45 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ssonerai View Post
Dowels or cones cut for cue-making would be a better bet and you can ask if they are KD; or they might be advertised as such. You hope they are selected for grain density, straight grain, run-out, general straightness, & color.
Therein lies the rub. Who's cutting specifically for cues? Who takes the time to mill the lumber parallel to bark in order to ensure the long grain fiber runs straight with no offset? Flat/plain sawing creates inherently offset grain fibers. Quarter sawing when the pith is centered will halve that offset but it's still not parallel. Only quarter sawing from the bottom up will produce bark parallel grain, but it requires extensive time and handling, which equals expense. Any of those milling procedures will produce shafts with growth ring lines that run straight from end to end, but only one where the grain fiber does as well. So who's milling specifically cues cues? I'd be amazed if anybody is doing it commercially.

To be clear, grain fiber and growth lines are not the same thing. A shaft can have 20 growth lines that run straight as an arrow from tip to joint but if the grain fiber has even a slight offset then the shaft will never stay straight. You'll be scratching your head wondering why such a perfect shaft is so unstable. Cut it over 100 years taking .005" cuts, sealing after every cut & keeping everything climate controlled, and you'll not keep that shaft straight. You'll pass it off as "internal stress". Conversely, take a 2gpi shaft where the growth lines snake this way & that until running completely off, and if the grain fiber runs parallel with center line then you can't make that shaft warp. Cut it fast, leave it in the trunk of your car, etc. It'll be fine. You'll be scratching your head again because what you're seeing with your own eyes doesn't jive with traditional cue making knowledge. Heaven forbid you use it in a cue.

That's why I don't put much stock in shaft grading. A beautiful shaft is useless if it won't stay straight. And frankly it's a real wasted expense for a maker to buy high grade shafts only to throw a percentage away for movement. A beautiful shaft that's warped or an ugly shaft that's forever straight, which is the higher grade?


I don't check PM's, please email me instead: sugartreecue@gmail.com
  
Reply With Quote
Old
  (#34)
JoeyInCali
AzB Silver Member

JoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond repute
 
JoeyInCali's Avatar
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 23,252
vCash: 4400
iTrader: 79 / 100%
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: OC, California
   
06-16-2019, 11:33 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ssonerai View Post

PS: I am definitely not saying maple should not be KD - Done properly after suitable correct AD it is the first defense about preventing stain and killing all the creepy crawlies. I started working wood in the early 1970's in MD. I would save out any BE or curly hard maple planks that came in a load of maple. In the "old days" it was pretty common to get pretty nice highly figured boards mixed right in. I accumulated it up on a rack in a small barn. (Dry, but no humidity control). When i moved shop to upstate NY in the early 90's, i went to move it, and it had all gone wormy. Just with that small MC differential in the mid-Atlantic states. If you have good maple, store it where the MC levels will always be way down.

smt
More than a decade ago a friend of mine got a hold of a good number of air dried maple planks. These planks were in storage near the beach here for more than a decade . I got a hold of a lot of them after he passed away.
They looked nice. He cut them to around 1 1/16 square. I processed them.
Most did not stay straight . Needless to say, I won't touch air dried maple again.

My main source told me years ago he does conventional kiln only. Not vacuum kiln. He said vacuum kiln keeps the maple whiter but takes away from the "integrity" of the maple. Meaning they become softer .
He does conventional kiln only but he kilns his planks while they are 6/4.
After drying, he mills them down to around 1 1/16. Not going into detail why he does that but his explanation made a lot of sense.
So, anyone who kilns 4/4 boards and sells them as shaft boards will most likely have a lot of rejects.
I'm not going to hype the shaft stock that I have but I do know they are stiffer and have higher pitch than the vacuum kilned shafts that is probably used by most cue makers today. I know where to get them ( the white vacuum kilned ones ) and most makers who have been around know where to get them.
If you don't know where to get them now, a little finger work ( not even leg work ) will lead you to them.
I have sold some dowels and boards from my source ( which I kinda regret now, except the ones that went to a very good friend ), and the very few people that bought them wanted a LOT MORE OF IT. So, did some of their acquaintances. 2 of whom are huge names in this field.
At one show I went to, two people were selling bowling alley shafts while one of them practically begged me to sell him some dowels.
I've also bought shaft stock from a maker who swore he had some great shaft stock. Paid good price for them. They looked solid. ALMOST 100% of them went bananas. I couldn't even chop them for coring dowels . You can see they had nice straight grain, they were dense and a little dark. But the boogers were crooked no matter what you did . Chalk it up to experience.
Bought some from a supposedly great source in Upper Peninsula Michigan .
Got nothing but junk. I wish I could have meet him and beat him with his own maple. This UP Michigan fable died with him. I'm not even going to argue where the best maples come from. But, freaking UP Michigan does not have a monopoly of it. Some infamous reseller hyped his maple by claiming they were all from UP Michigan, Turns out they didn't even come from there. And it's NOT EVEN CLOSE TO MICHIGAN. Same infamous reseller claims his maple are "stress relieved". Pfft! Got a hold of a few dozen of them from a maker who was quitting. I turned them and a good percentage of them were moving right after a pass. They turned out to be much lighter and softer too.

I can go on but it's late.


  
Reply With Quote
Shaft wood
Old
  (#35)
Mcues
AzB Silver Member
Mcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond reputeMcues has a reputation beyond repute
 
Mcues's Avatar
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 1,297
vCash: 1700
iTrader: 35 / 100%
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New York
   
Shaft wood - 06-17-2019, 09:19 AM

Unfortunately, when it comes to shaft wood we all have some horror stories. I bought 25 dowels from a new supplier, supposedly unpicked top notch, lol Well after processing over a period of about four years, 19 of those made the coring grade I didn't bother to complain.
This is just one of many encounters with those that don't know what their doing or know too well what they are doing.

You cannot correct lack of integrity or character flaws, too full of themselves, so best to let them think they got away with something. Every transaction no matter how small becomes a reflection of the individuals true character.

Mario


The trouble with communication is the illusion that it has taken place.
Mcues3@aol.com
  
Reply With Quote
Old
  (#36)
JoeyInCali
AzB Silver Member

JoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond repute
 
JoeyInCali's Avatar
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 23,252
vCash: 4400
iTrader: 79 / 100%
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: OC, California
   
06-17-2019, 10:32 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mcues View Post
Unfortunately, when it comes to shaft wood we all have some horror stories. I bought 25 dowels from a new supplier, supposedly unpicked top notch, lol Well after processing over a period of about four years, 19 of those made the coring grade I didn't bother to complain.
This is just one of many encounters with those that don't know what their doing or know too well what they are doing.

You cannot correct lack of integrity or character flaws, too full of themselves, so best to let them think they got away with something. Every transaction no matter how small becomes a reflection of the individuals true character.

Mario
Maybe those 25 pieces were the unpicked.
Nobody wanted them.


Years ago a friend of mine split a pallet.
I put them on the overhead rack.
He came in and picked his pieces randomly.
I didn't even paint the ends .


  
Reply With Quote
Old
  (#37)
thoffen
AzB Silver Member
thoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond repute
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 511
vCash: 500
iTrader: 1 / 100%
Blog Entries: 1
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Atlanta, GA
   
06-17-2019, 01:11 PM

You can flat saw and get some boards with radial grain. You can rift saw and have a lot which isn't near good enough. Trees don't grow cylindrical. That means you might not cut parallel to the grain and have useless boards for shafts which you can't fix well enough by picking centers. And even even you're along a radial plane, the grain might not run straight depending on how the tree grew.

Yeah you can mill logs differently to get higher yield for shafts, but I'm not sure anything keeps you from having to carefully sort through your stock.
  
Reply With Quote
Old
  (#38)
qbilder
slower than snails
qbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond reputeqbilder has a reputation beyond repute
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 4,803
vCash: 500
iTrader: 19 / 100%
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Manchester, TN
   
06-18-2019, 11:03 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by thoffen View Post
Yeah you can mill logs differently to get higher yield for shafts, but I'm not sure anything keeps you from having to carefully sort through your stock.
That's 100% true. Regardless of how the log is milled, it'll still have the same growth ring run-off, mineral spots, sugar lines, and knots. The wood is static. What makes the difference is milling it for stability vs. milling it for speed efficiency. If every board is removed parallel to bark, then the grain is parallel with the growth rings. What that means in cue maker terms is that you won't end up with a bucket full of great looking shafts that you cannot keep straight. If the blank looks good enough to put on your lathe and turn, you can be confident it'll become a cue, barring a random mineral spot showing up after one of the cuts.

Furthermore, your turning schedule can be cranked up. No more of that making thin cuts, hanging, sealing, and hoping. A properly milled shaft doesn't benefit from being sealed, and you aren't going to cause it to warp by cutting it down faster. That mystical "internal stress" we always blame warped shafts on doesn't exist in properly milled & dried wood. It's really should be a non-issue. Humidity exchange would no longer be a thing to fear because the wood is already at its happy place regardless of moisture content. It's not going to move away from its own center. There's a whole lot of cue maker myth that would be totally busted if everybody had access to properly cut wood. But they don't. The only suppliers I know who milled that way retired. One may still be around but he's far too small shop to supply everybody.

I know one HOF maker who began building in the 60's. I was visiting his shop one day & noticed he had no wood. Seriously. He had no shelves or drawers or racks with wood. No exotics, no birdseye, no shaft wood, nothing. Being a wood river kind of guy myself I had to pry on him to explain why none was present. I was hoping to see brazilian from the 60's & 70's, stuff like that. Nope. He told me he buys the wood he needs for a cue as the cue is ordered, and cuts it from square to size immediately. There was a CNC machine lathe set up for shafts. He puts a square between centers and lets the lathe do its thing until the square becomes a 13mm pro-tapered shaft, two per cue. If you order a birdseye and cocobolo cue, he will buy one piece each of cocobolo and birdseye, and two shaft squares. He laughed at my shop full of wood, says it's an unneccesary waste of space that otherwise could have machines or working space. This was years ago. At the time he'd been making cues for around 50yrs. He's a revered maker, not particularly known for warped shafts or unstable cues. His explanation was pretty much the same as mine. If t was done right when you bought it, you can't screw it up. The trick is finding it.


I don't check PM's, please email me instead: sugartreecue@gmail.com
  
Reply With Quote
Old
  (#39)
JoeyInCali
AzB Silver Member

JoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond reputeJoeyInCali has a reputation beyond repute
 
JoeyInCali's Avatar
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 23,252
vCash: 4400
iTrader: 79 / 100%
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: OC, California
   
06-18-2019, 12:04 PM

Here's a video of Ernie showing how he stores his shafts. And some shaft talk. He said he likes ( for himself ) the darker with sugars kind.
https://youtu.be/zpl9ANYjjWE?t=1367

I once asked him if he had saw tapering machine.
He said no. He said he favors high speed Perske spindles.



Last edited by JoeyInCali; 06-18-2019 at 12:06 PM.
  
Reply With Quote
Old
  (#40)
thoffen
AzB Silver Member
thoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond reputethoffen has a reputation beyond repute
 
Status: Offline
Posts: 511
vCash: 500
iTrader: 1 / 100%
Blog Entries: 1
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Atlanta, GA
   
06-18-2019, 12:50 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by qbilder View Post
That's 100% true. Regardless of how the log is milled, it'll still have the same growth ring run-off, mineral spots, sugar lines, and knots. The wood is static. What makes the difference is milling it for stability vs. milling it for speed efficiency. If every board is removed parallel to bark, then the grain is parallel with the growth rings. What that means in cue maker terms is that you won't end up with a bucket full of great looking shafts that you cannot keep straight. If the blank looks good enough to put on your lathe and turn, you can be confident it'll become a cue, barring a random mineral spot showing up after one of the cuts.

Furthermore, your turning schedule can be cranked up. No more of that making thin cuts, hanging, sealing, and hoping. A properly milled shaft doesn't benefit from being sealed, and you aren't going to cause it to warp by cutting it down faster. That mystical "internal stress" we always blame warped shafts on doesn't exist in properly milled & dried wood. It's really should be a non-issue. Humidity exchange would no longer be a thing to fear because the wood is already at its happy place regardless of moisture content. It's not going to move away from its own center. There's a whole lot of cue maker myth that would be totally busted if everybody had access to properly cut wood. But they don't. The only suppliers I know who milled that way retired. One may still be around but he's far too small shop to supply everybody.

I know one HOF maker who began building in the 60's. I was visiting his shop one day & noticed he had no wood. Seriously. He had no shelves or drawers or racks with wood. No exotics, no birdseye, no shaft wood, nothing. Being a wood river kind of guy myself I had to pry on him to explain why none was present. I was hoping to see brazilian from the 60's & 70's, stuff like that. Nope. He told me he buys the wood he needs for a cue as the cue is ordered, and cuts it from square to size immediately. There was a CNC machine lathe set up for shafts. He puts a square between centers and lets the lathe do its thing until the square becomes a 13mm pro-tapered shaft, two per cue. If you order a birdseye and cocobolo cue, he will buy one piece each of cocobolo and birdseye, and two shaft squares. He laughed at my shop full of wood, says it's an unneccesary waste of space that otherwise could have machines or working space. This was years ago. At the time he'd been making cues for around 50yrs. He's a revered maker, not particularly known for warped shafts or unstable cues. His explanation was pretty much the same as mine. If t was done right when you bought it, you can't screw it up. The trick is finding it.
Good stuff. I'll run some experiments myself but in the meantime whenever I can get a look at the end grain of any piece of wood for sale I'll pay a lot more attention.
  
Reply With Quote
Reply
Page 3 of 3 123

Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.