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Willie Hoppe cue and “Expert Leather Cue Case”
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Willie Hoppe cue and “Expert Leather Cue Case” - 05-22-2020, 07:36 AM

I wanted to share this with ya’ll. I have been researching a Brunswick cue and a Brunswick case for some time and must express sincere thanks to Scott/runscott who has been incredibly generous with his time and knowledge.

I bought the cue and case at a garage sale after seeing a photo of the cue on estatesales.net. The cue is a first decal/second signature Brunswick Willie Hoppe Professional made of brazilian rosewood. The cue has a Hoppe ring. The case is a Brunswick “Expert Leather Cue Case” as shown on page 5 of Brunswick’s Spring 1949 Mail Order Catalog.

I have been “mining” Brunswicks catalogs and have found the following information. (I do not vouch for the accuracy of this information as I have been cautioned that information from Brunswick catalogs, etc., is not completely reliable.) Beginning in 1941, Brunswick offered the Willie Hoppe Professional in weights of 20, 21, and 22 ounces. In 1948, Brunswick added 18 and 19 ounce cues. Brunswick’s catalog gives no specifications on the length of the Willie Hoppe Professional for 1941 and 1942. In 1943 the specified length is 57 inches. In the 1945, 1946, 1948, and 1949 (Spring) catalogs, the specified length is 56 inches. In the 1949 (Fall) catalog, the length became 57 inches and remained at 57 inches for the years I checked. My cue is stamped “18” and measures 56 ⅜ inches w/o a tip. If one assumes both that Brunswick manufactured and shipped per its specifications and that my cue length is unaltered, one can fairly conclude that my cue was made in 1948 or early 1949.

As to leather cases, in 1948 Brunswick offered the “Professional” and “Aristocrat”. In 1949, the leather cases offered were “Expert” and “Aristocrat”. Brunswick continued to offer the Expert until 1954. According to the catalogs, the Professional was 35 ½ inches long and the Expert was 32 inches long. My case measures 32 inches and agrees with the Expert described and pictured in the catalog.
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05-22-2020, 08:01 AM

Very nice case 👌


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05-22-2020, 08:02 AM

damn. That thing looks new.

There is a 'Cue and Case Gallery' section on this forum.

You might get more dialog on the item there?


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05-22-2020, 08:36 AM

Photos of that cue? Decal + Hoppe ring + rosewood = one of the rarer Brunswick Hoppes.


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05-22-2020, 08:41 AM

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Originally Posted by RickLafayette View Post
Photos of that cue? Decal + Hoppe ring + rosewood = one of the rarer Brunswick Hoppes.
Here is mine, just spent an hour buffing it up last night

http://imgur.com/a/4vlE94Q


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05-22-2020, 08:49 AM

Photos of parts of cue
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05-22-2020, 09:22 AM

Very nice. I wish I still had my conversion.


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05-22-2020, 09:23 AM

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Originally Posted by ideologist View Post
Here is mine, just spent an hour buffing it up last night

http://imgur.com/a/4vlE94Q
That right there is a beautiful specimen.


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05-22-2020, 09:42 AM

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That right there is a beautiful specimen.
Thank you sir, thick old lacquer can really sparkle like modern paint


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05-22-2020, 09:53 AM

Nice piece of pool history.


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05-22-2020, 11:52 AM

I had a case a lot like that. I bought it from the Brunswick dealer in San Francisco about 1968. It had a lot of use and repairs and eventually retired.

The cue and case you found look like the owner put them away not long after getting them and never used them again. Awesome find.


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05-22-2020, 12:36 PM

That's a great looking case. Is it for sale? And more importantly how's the fishing off Chandeleur Islands? I grew up in Long Beach and spent every weekend on them catching trout. Good times.
  
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05-22-2020, 01:26 PM

The person who owned the cue and case lived in rural Harrison County was a "horseman" -- several saddles and other tack, all well cared for, were in the sale but no other pool items. The butt section shows some play the shaft has one blemish. It was definitely not used a great deal.

They are not for sale. At first I thought about restoring or converting but with a little tlc it took on a beauty of its own.

Between Deepwater Horizon, Bonne Carret Spillway opening, and way too many fishermen, the north central Gulf is not the same.


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05-22-2020, 02:01 PM

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Originally Posted by Biloxi Boy View Post
The person who owned the cue and case lived in rural Harrison County was a "horseman" -- several saddles and other tack, all well cared for, were in the sale but no other pool items. The butt section shows some play the shaft has one blemish. It was definitely not used a great deal.

They are not for sale. At first I thought about restoring or converting but with a little tlc it took on a beauty of its own.

Between Deepwater Horizon, Bonne Carret Spillway opening, and way too many fishermen, the north central Gulf is not the same.
I wouldn't sell it either. I'd buy it though.
I hate to hear that the fishing is off in the islands over there. I caught so many fish there as a kid off Cat and Ship Island along with the Chandeleur chain. I've been meaning to schedule a trip over there for years but the last 7-8 years we've been going to BC and Alaska for something different and to cool off during the summer months. That's canceled this year so I guess the timing is right to call one of the Islander Lodges. And if you think there's fishing pressure over there come to Clearwater this weekend. We're going 92 miles out to the loop current tomorrow and I bet we see at least a dozen boats around us.
  
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05-22-2020, 03:17 PM

Very nice cue and case. I once owned a Willie Hoppe Professional and a Brunswick Master Stroke - both in mint original condition, sort of wish now that I never sold them. Your case is very, very rare in that great original condition! One item that I still have is a Lord Brunswick Genuine leather cue case - about 50 years old- it was their top of the line cue case 50 or 60 years ago- like yours, this one that I own sat in someones' home for it's entire life- not many like it in existence. My Palmer Deluxe cue case is also about 50 years old and in mint condition- another closet queen that I found this year here in Florida at an estate sale as well.
  
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