Chalk Experiment Results, with Video

BRussell

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
To me, here's the bottom line: If you chalk before every shot, the type of chalk doesn't seem to make much difference. However, if you forget to chalk, or don't like to chalk often, or don't chalk effectively, and if you miscue often, then you might prefer one of the chalks that remains effective on the tip longer.

Thanks for your work dave.

I do think it's important to mention that you found a downside to the stickier chalk: That it stays on the cue ball longer (thus perhaps increasing the chance of a skid), and also that it throws more, so if you're unlucky enough that the CB-OB contact point is right on a chalk mark, you're likely to get a worse reaction.

Maybe you're (understandably) reluctant to be too critical of a product, but IMO the lesson is to avoid the sticky chalks and just make sure you chalk up enough.
 

Bob Jewett

AZB Osmium Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
... To me, here's the bottom line: If you chalk before every shot, the type of chalk doesn't seem to make much difference. However, if you forget to chalk, or don't like to chalk often, or don't chalk effectively, and if you miscue often, then you might prefer one of the chalks that remains effective on the tip longer. ...
I think it is useful to note that the importance of not miscuing depends on your level of play. For the vast majority of players, miscuing one shot out of 200 is no big deal. For a top player that same miscue rate might double the rate of mistakes and misses. A similar situation holds for skids. If you are 80% to pocket the typical shot, one skid in 200 shots is lost in the large randomness of the direction you send the object ball. (I think many players don't even notice when a skid occurs.) For someone who might miss one shot per hour when they are playing well, skids are fearsome things.
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
To me, here's the bottom line: If you chalk before every shot, the type of chalk doesn't seem to make much difference. However, if you forget to chalk, or don't like to chalk often, or don't chalk effectively, and if you miscue often, then you might prefer one of the chalks that remains effective on the tip longer. Magic Chalk still seems to be the best in this category (with Kamui 2nd best, and Blue Diamond also good).
Thanks for your work dave.

I do think it's important to mention that you found a downside to the stickier chalk: That it stays on the cue ball longer (thus perhaps increasing the chance of a skid), and also that it throws more, so if you're unlucky enough that the CB-OB contact point is right on a chalk mark, you're likely to get a worse reaction.

Maybe you're (understandably) reluctant to be too critical of a product, but IMO the lesson is to avoid the sticky chalks and just make sure you chalk up enough.
Excellent point. I agree 100%. An increased risk of cling/skid/kick is a major issue, especially for a top player.

Based on all of the results, I would say the best chalk tested is the Magic Chalk. It doesn't seem to be as "sticky" as Kamui and Blue Diamond, and it has the best persistence with infrequent or inadequate chalking.

Regards,
Dave
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
I think it is useful to note that the importance of not miscuing depends on your level of play. For the vast majority of players, miscuing one shot out of 200 is no big deal. For a top player that same miscue rate might double the rate of mistakes and misses. A similar situation holds for skids. If you are 80% to pocket the typical shot, one skid in 200 shots is lost in the large randomness of the direction you send the object ball. (I think many players don't even notice when a skid occurs.) For someone who might miss one shot per hour when they are playing well, skids are fearsome things.
Excellent points. I agree 100% (as is usually the case with your posts).

Regards,
Dave
 

Allen Brown

Pool Whale
Silver Member
Dr Dave, I think all of these companies need to cut you a check for you time and efforts. Oh, let's not forget about free advertising....LOL. Thanks for taking the time to do these tests. It's very much appreciated.
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
Dr Dave, I think all of these companies need to cut you a check for you time and efforts. Oh, let's not forget about free advertising....LOL. Thanks for taking the time to do these tests. It's very much appreciated.
If anybody wants to cut me a check (as long as nothing is expected in return), I would be happy provide my mailing address. :grin-square:

Catch you later,
Dave
 

Sloppy Pockets

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Maybe the abrasive has different properties (strength, hardness, texture, or shape).

Ya think?


http://www.uama.org/Abrasives101/101Types.html


There are a bewildering number of abrasives, both naturally formed and manmade. Even in common sandpapers there are huge differences. Years ago somebody turned me on to the Carborundum Premier Red abrasive papers that are made in Canada and I haven't bought a sheet of 3M since then. Same chemical (aluminum oxide) but vastly different properties in use. Premier Red is to 3M as Magic Chalk is to Masters - it lasts and lasts by comparison.

One of the things about this paper (as explained to me by our distributor) is that the granules are sorted, heated to a high temperature, and then cooled rapidly. This causes any small stress lines in the granules to open up and fracture the granule into smaller pieces that are both more stable to further breakage and have sharper edges. After that the stuff is re-sifted and graded.

This all costs the company a lot of extra time and money, as well as reducing the yield of large grains (those are always the more expensive grades), so the paper costs more. But use it once and you are a believer for life, it's just that good. So, on paper (pun intended) both of these products use the same formula for their abrasives, but the one outperforms the other by a huge margin.
 

Sloppy Pockets

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I think it is useful to note that the importance of not miscuing depends on your level of play. For the vast majority of players, miscuing one shot out of 200 is no big deal. For a top player that same miscue rate might double the rate of mistakes and misses.

Mike Dechaine miscued three times in a row during one of his matches at Turning Stone. Turns out it was a defective tip he has just had installed at the tourney (I was kind enough to go to the car and get my Gator Grip and let him borrow it for the rest of the time I was there), but if he was using a "grippier" chalk that held on to the tip better, maybe he wouldn't have miscued at all.;)

Of course, three miscues did little to hold Mike back. He went on to win that match 9-2 IIRC.:cool:
 

SouthernDraw

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I think it is useful to note that the importance of not miscuing depends on your level of play. For the vast majority of players, miscuing one shot out of 200 is no big deal. For a top player that same miscue rate might double the rate of mistakes and misses. A similar situation holds for skids. If you are 80% to pocket the typical shot, one skid in 200 shots is lost in the large randomness of the direction you send the object ball. (I think many players don't even notice when a skid occurs.) For someone who might miss one shot per hour when they are playing well, skids are fearsome things.
I often see players blame a miscue on not chalking, when I can clearly see them trying to hit too far away from center. Often, hitting too high when they stand straight up before they stroke it too strongly.

And, when I miscue, they usually correct me by stating that I didn't chalk well enough. But I am almost always pushing the edge too far or stroking with extreme soft bottom with spin. Each time I know that it's my fault for trying to do too much. But, I would just be wasting my breathe by stating what seems obvious to me. So, I just smile and go on.
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
I often see players blame a miscue on not chalking, when I can clearly see them trying to hit too far away from center. Often, hitting too high when they stand straight up before they stroke it too strongly.

And, when I miscue, they usually correct me by stating that I didn't chalk well enough. But I am almost always pushing the edge too far or stroking with extreme soft bottom with spin. Each time I know that it's my fault for trying to do too much. But, I would just be wasting my breathe by stating what seems obvious to me. So, I just smile and go on.
I think many people miscue from poor mechanics: tightening the grip during the stroke (especially with draw shots that turn into scoop jumps), turning or flicking the wrist, and/or swooping the stroke. And sometimes it is from not chalking or not chalking properly and carefully.

I like blaming it on the chalk when I miscue also. ;)

Regards,
Dave
 
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