Historic Cues. Do you have any?

WildWing

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I guess I could make the argument that any of Gus' or George's cues could be considered historic cues.

Only issue is there are more Gus and George cues out there than they made originally.


Southwest? nope.

Ken

Interesting post. I agree that any of Gus' or George's would be historic. Fair minded people agree they made about 1,200 each, though hard to count exactly. No doubt many more fakes exist.

I would also put Frank Paradise cues in this category, about the same number as Gus and George. And I'm not aware of extraordinary efforts to copy a Paradise.

On Southwest, I haven't owned or dealt with them, so I can't claim all knowledge. I do know they tend to look similar. Same joint, collar design, six point, three high, three low, and familiar buttplate with rings, different woods. There are some fancy Southwests though, and they are very nice looking. All of us are aware of the early Franklin cues. But their main production, as far as exhibited examples go, indicate a pretty standard formula.

Overall, I would have to agree with you, though there would be some notable exceptions.

All the best,
WW
 
Last edited:

ideologist

I don't never exaggerate
Silver Member
Interesting post. I agree that any of Gus' or George's would be historic. Fair minded people agree they made about 2,400 each, though hard to count exactly. No doubt many more fakes exist.


All the best,
WW


2,400??????? Such a load. I can tell you EXACTLY how the ordering process worked with Balabushka. You couldn't order a cue. You could call and say you wanted one, but would be nodded at and ignored unless you were a PLAYER, a real player. Some celebrities and personalities got cues as favors.

However, he had a couple of guys he gave all his cues to, and they sold them on his behalf. A handful a month. That's the pace he worked at. No 2,400. I'd bet 600 at best from George. HE HAD ONE LATHE.

The above information is exactly from two guys who were part of George's NY supply line. Both had the same story and both saw the same thing. One large, a guy who was a perfectionist and worked at his own capricious pace. That's not someone cranking out 2,400 cues in 15 years.

Pete has a good deal running giving "restorations" and then all of a sudden, your totally original Bushka is overseas and you get your "restored" cue back.
 
Last edited:

WildWing

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
2,400??????? Such a load. I can tell you EXACTLY how the ordering process worked with Balabushka. You couldn't order a cue. You could call and say you wanted one, but would be nodded at and ignored unless you were a PLAYER, a real player. Some celebrities and personalities got cues as favors.

However, he had a couple of guys he gave all his cues to, and they sold them on his behalf. A handful a month. That's the pace he worked at. No 2,400. I'd bet 600 at best from George. HE HAD ONE LATHE.

The above information is exactly from two guys who were part of George's NY supply line. Both had the same story and both saw the same thing. One large, a guy who was a perfectionist and worked at his own capricious pace. That's not someone cranking out 2,400 cues in 15 years.

Pete has a good deal running giving "restorations" and then all of a sudden, your totally original Bushka is overseas and you get your "restored" cue back.

Good to have you back. You are correct, in a way. I meant to say 1,200 for both George and Gus, as well as Frank Paradise.I guess it's still debatable.

All the best,
WW
 

ideologist

I don't never exaggerate
Silver Member
Good to have you back. You are correct, in a way. I meant to say 1,200 for both George and Gus, as well as Frank Paradise.I guess it's still debatable.

All the best,
WW

1,200 is rich, too. The guy worked 8 hours a day, and could taper one shaft at a time, taper one butt at a time, and so on. The number of Balabushkas has grown to mythical heights to protect certain parties
 

ideologist

I don't never exaggerate
Silver Member
You had a time clock on him?

Who would you like to talk to? The guy who sold his cues for him? He lives in my town. The guy who bought a few and knew the process, talking with George directly? What did you do besides listen to fluff from AZ? Go do some of your own research.
 

WildWing

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
This thread is a civil thread about historic cues. Please bear that in mind.

All the best,
WW
 
Last edited:

ideologist

I don't never exaggerate
Silver Member
I think I can understand why you were banned.

This thread is a civil thread about historic cues. Please bear that in mind.

All the best,
WW

Right, but polluting a civil thread with misinformation does not help collectors.
 

skins

Likes to draw
Silver Member
Right, but polluting a civil thread with misinformation does not help collectors.

My "guy" was John Wright. He had shared that he figured "around" 1,100 cues came out of Gus's shop and around 900 out of George's...

As for Gus, Barry would know more than anyone I'd figure. As for George, Pete T and Denny Glenn would be the two that may have a more correct figure...
 

WildWing

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
My "guy" was John Wright. He had shared that he figured "around" 1,100 cues came out of Gus's shop and around 900 out of George's...

As for Gus, Barry would know more than anyone I'd figure. As for George, Pete T and Denny Glenn would be the two that may have a more correct figure...

Good post; I had conversations with John as well, early 90s as I recall. I still have a lot of his pictures that he graciously sent around to collectors. Fairly consistent figures, though as I recall he stated to me, closer to 1,200 for George, but he admitted hard to tell for sure. A substantial number ended overseas as you know. And quite a few early were Titlist conversions. We've generally settled on a number about 1,200, but admittedly would be hard to track, as some are no doubt lost or destroyed. Given his time span of early/mid 60s to 1975, I think it's not out of the realm to estimate somewhat more than 1,000. Wish they had serial numbers on them.

All the best,
H
 

Bigb'scues

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
2,400??????? Such a load. I can tell you EXACTLY how the ordering process worked with Balabushka. You couldn't order a cue. You could call and say you wanted one, but would be nodded at and ignored unless you were a PLAYER, a real player. Some celebrities and personalities got cues as favors.

However, he had a couple of guys he gave all his cues to, and they sold them on his behalf. A handful a month. That's the pace he worked at. No 2,400. I'd bet 600 at best from George. HE HAD ONE LATHE.

The above information is exactly from two guys who were part of George's NY supply line. Both had the same story and both saw the same thing. One large, a guy who was a perfectionist and worked at his own capricious pace. That's not someone cranking out 2,400 cues in 15 years.

Pete has a good deal running giving "restorations" and then all of a sudden, your totally original Bushka is overseas and you get your "restored" cue back.



Does anyone know if this is in anyway true??
 

Chopdoc

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Good post; I had conversations with John as well, early 90s as I recall. I still have a lot of his pictures that he graciously sent around to collectors.

Same here, but tragically my pictures were lost.

I won't get into the numbers conversation, it's all been done here before, but John did express an opinion on more than one occasion.

Brings back a lot of memories.





.
 

philly

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
I grew up in the Philadelphia area. Doc Frye was our local legendary cue maker. I have a buddy who has one that he bought in 68 I think for $100. I have heard Mizerak played Doc Frye's at one time. His original lathe is at Pete Fusco's place, The Spot, in Trevose Pa. Any idea how many Frye's were made?
 

SmoothStroke

Swim for the win.
Silver Member
I guess I could make the argument that any of Gus' or George's cues could be considered historic cues.

Only issue is there are more Gus and George cues out there than they made originally.


Southwest? nope.

Ken

It's amazing how many Refinished Bushkas were popping up all over Ny, NJ, Pa, Conn during the 80's and 90's, you could smell the lathe burning.
Cues were flying overseas like birds, and locals were buying them up for 3K and less.
 

ideologist

I don't never exaggerate
Silver Member
It's amazing how many Refinished Bushkas were popping up all over Ny, NJ, Pa, Conn during the 80's and 90's, you could smell the lathe burning.
Cues were flying overseas like birds, and locals were buying them up for 3K and less.

Yes, it is amazing
 

billiardcue

11th Commandment
Silver Member
Gifts from Willie Mosconi

From Willie Mosconi to Jackie Gleason by Herman Rambow.

rambowglemos.jpg

From Willie Mosconi to Mickey Mantle by Frank Paradise.

paradise_Q1968 v.jpg

This magnificent cue is available from BilliardCue.com
 

billiardcue

11th Commandment
Silver Member
Minnesota Fats Meucci

An exquisite one of a kind jewel encrusted masterpiece made by Bob Meucci for Minnesota Fats.

meucci_Q1987.jpg

fatsmeucci.jpg
 

Paul Dayton

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
2,400??????? Such a load. I can tell you EXACTLY how the ordering process worked with Balabushka. You couldn't order a cue. You could call and say you wanted one, but would be nodded at and ignored unless you were a PLAYER, a real player. Some celebrities and personalities got cues as favors.

However, he had a couple of guys he gave all his cues to, and they sold them on his behalf. A handful a month. That's the pace he worked at. No 2,400. I'd bet 600 at best from George. HE HAD ONE LATHE.

The above information is exactly from two guys who were part of George's NY supply line. Both had the same story and both saw the same thing. One large, a guy who was a perfectionist and worked at his own capricious pace. That's not someone cranking out 2,400 cues in 15 years.

Pete has a good deal running giving "restorations" and then all of a sudden, your totally original Bushka is overseas and you get your "restored" cue back.

In 1973 I had my Palmer stolen and I called George and met him in his shop. At the time I was fooling around restoring, inlaying and refinishing cues so we talked for quite a while and he showed me how he put on his finish and gave me a jar of his finish to try. I also ordered a plain 4 point cue. I sent him some MOP inlays I made which I'm sure he never used and he sent me a cue for $120. which I definitely did use. A year later my car was stolen with the cue inside, I got the car back minus tires, battery, radio, cue and a briefcase full of papers. I called George and three weeks later I had another cue for $125. Neither cue was inlaid.
 

HighEndCues

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Here are pictures of my Mizerak "Dove" Balabushka.
One of the Most recognizable and Historic cues built.
World Championships, Miller Lite commercials, Specially built for Steve.
Steve passed away still owning it.
Best,
Ken
















"Inside Pockets Biliiards" by Steve Mizerak 1973



"Inside Pockets Biliiards" by Steve Mizerak 1973
 
Top