My first tip install

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Your work looks great. I know your lathe does not have one.. just checking how you turned to dimension. I want to convert a house cue
without a taper bar. Joint and custom butt cap. Anyway keep up the beautiful work. It’s classy, custom and one of a kind.
I am also seeing the need for sanding mandrels. Getting the joint diameter the same for the shaft and forearm was difficult.
 

iusedtoberich

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Yeah, it was difficult to find what I wanted. I did get this one from Amazon.
View attachment 595886

The t-nuts for this size track was impossible to find. I settled on some that are a little smaller than I wanted, but they worked well enough.

But now I see they have something that will also work. I wanted the kind I could lift out of the track without sliding it down to the end.
I didn't read the whole thread, so I might have missed it. The not so common profile you have has the same size t-nut slot as 8020's "10" series. The nut for that is very common. It's 1/4-20 thread. Here it is on McMaster:


Edit: and here is the type that lifts out of the track for the "10" series:
 

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
After seeing the two butt repairs I did on my cues, I had a couple people ask me to do something similar to their cues.

The first was an Adam cue that had a cracked butt and an odd pine extension added on.
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The original rings were cracked and unsalvageable. After turning down the butt to a tenon I saw that the crack made it all the way though. I filled in the crack with Gorilla glue. I wanted the design to be simple like the original. I decided to have similar thick rings, but I would use the phenolic material for the ring and have one on each end to hopefully help support and contain the crack from widening. The back ring also had a flange to support the original butt plate. The butt sleeve is Yucatán Rosewood and I finished it off with some accent rings.

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The cue has sentimental value so he is very happy it has new extended life.

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I’ll make another post for the other cue.
 
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ShootingArts

Smorg is giving St Peter the 7!
Gold Member
Silver Member
Looking Good! A few things I would have done differently for appearance but different design preferences is one of the things that set our work off.

Memory fails so I may have already warned but don't use CA for full cue finishing and don't use it without a lot of ventilation. It will do permanent damage to your lungs. Use of it for finishing has been credited for killing at least one cue builder according to his doctor. Speaking of adhesives, I would have used something that didn't expand assuming that was the original gorilla glue you put in that crack. Might get cute on later repairs and die the glue to get closer to the wood, trying for the tiniest bit darker is probably best.

Just tips and by no means bible. Nothing like somebody with COPD to worry about other people's lungs. I hate that once the damage is done there is no going back.

Hu
 

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Looking Good! A few things I would have done differently for appearance but different design preferences is one of the things that set our work off.

Memory fails so I may have already warned but don't use CA for full cue finishing and don't use it without a lot of ventilation. It will do permanent damage to your lungs. Use of it for finishing has been credited for killing at least one cue builder according to his doctor. Speaking of adhesives, I would have used something that didn't expand assuming that was the original gorilla glue you put in that crack. Might get cute on later repairs and die the glue to get closer to the wood, trying for the tiniest bit darker is probably best.

Just tips and by no means bible. Nothing like somebody with COPD to worry about other people's lungs. I hate that once the damage is done there is no going back.

Hu

Design can be the most difficult part sometimes. Still learning so I would love to hear your opinion.

Yes, you have warned me about CA and I have beefed up my ventilation. I want to move to epoxy/Solarez one day. I need to get more equipment to do that, so hopefully the near future when I can afford it.

I used the expanding glue so it would fill in the space better. It was an open crack, so it expanded in and out with no pressure.
 

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Finally getting back to posting the other cue. My friend picked up this unknown sneaky for $10. In overall good condition except the wooden butt showed some wear. She wanted a phenolic butt plate added and left the rest to me to decide, just nothing flashy.

After facing off the end, I cut off a small piece from the end of the cue so I could make a ring from the same wood. I sandwiched it in between two pieces of Bocote and then the extended butt plate to make up for the piece I cut off.

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SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Well, the practice continues. This is house cue from my favorite little hole in the wall. They let me know that one of the tips was weird and spongy. This was a Triangle tip I had installed about a year ago. I am guessing somebody got it real wet.

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Simple tip replacement, but man the butt was a mess. Many regulars have their favorite cues and I know this was one of them. Big chunk missing and more cracks beginning to run up the butt. It wasn't going to last much longer, so I decided to try to extend its life a bit longer so the guys can still have their favorite cue.

Inlay/spliced a piece of Patagonian Rosewood (closest match on hand) that blended well enough for a dark bar and turned it down to add a phenolic butt plate. I returned the cue along with a lecture on not slamming the cue on the floor.

This was just a quick gratis job on a house cue, so I didn't go overboard on the final appearance. I could have gotten the 8 ball a little smoother (I hate it more the more I look at it), but figured it was good enough for a bar banger.

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EddieBme

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Finally getting back to posting the other cue. My friend picked up this unknown sneaky for $10. In overall good condition except the wooden butt showed some wear. She wanted a phenolic butt plate added and left the rest to me to decide, just nothing flashy.

After facing off the end, I cut off a small piece from the end of the cue so I could make a ring from the same wood. I sandwiched it in between two pieces of Bocote and then the extended butt plate to make up for the piece I cut off.

View attachment 694379

View attachment 694381



View attachment 694712
very nice!
 

j2pac

Marital Slow Learner.
Staff member
Moderator
Gold Member
Silver Member
After seeing the two butt repairs I did on my cues, I had a couple people ask me to do something similar to their cues.

The first was an Adam cue that had a cracked butt and an odd pine extension added on. View attachment 694078

The original rings were cracked and unsalvageable. After turning down the butt to a tenon I saw that the crack made it all the way though. I filled in the crack with Gorilla glue. I wanted the design to be simple like the original. I decided to have similar thick rings, but I would use the phenolic material for the ring and have one on each end to hopefully help support and contain the crack from widening. The back ring also had a flange to support the original butt plate. The butt sleeve is Yucatán Rosewood and I finished it off with some accent rings.

View attachment 694082


The cue has sentimental value so he is very happy it has new extended life.

View attachment 694083

I’ll make another post for the other cue.
Very nice. 👍
 

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Great project. Pretty nice work. Looking forward to your “pinning” conversation.
Your lathe does not have a taper bar? I’m asking.

Well, I finally got to do my first joint pin. I have 3 old house cues I am cutting down to make 2-piece cues. Two I am working on for a friend and the third for myself. I figured I would practice on mine first before I attempted it on his.
I made one big mistake when calculating the part of the pin to stick out. I made it for a piloted shaft and I measured the part of the pin from the joint face not the bottom of the pilot hole. I had to remove about 1/8" off the end of the pin to shorten it.

Another good learning experience and I am super happy I did not turn the cue into firewood. Now I have to finish the rest of the cue and see how it plays.

I'll update when done with it as well as the other two.

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FirstPin.gif
 

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
This was a good practice run before I finish the other two house conversions. I learned a lot and I have another nice cue to mess around with.

The joint pin came out pretty well. I do have to be more careful about the measurements though. Over all patience is probably the biggest lesson learned. I can’t wait to see it finished, but when you rush things they tend to not come out as good, if at all.

My “practice” cue was an unknown purpleheart house cue. It has uneven points and a couple glue lines around the splice, but appears to be a solid cue made from decent wood.

I made the joint collar out of black phenolic and added an aluminum ring to match the shaft I planned to use with it. The shaft is an extra Pechauer I had laying around so I put in a 5/16-14 joint pin. On the butt end I added a butt sleeve made out of Grey Box Burl with Snakewood rings and a brown phenolic butt plate.

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SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Played with the cue last couple nights. It is a bit stiffer than my regular player but still liked how it plays and feels.

When I finally get a tapering lathe I may go back and fix the taper on it. I made the handle part slightly thicker. It doesn’t bother me playing, but since the finish isn’t perfect there I may just even it out someday.

Since I like how it plays, I left it at the bar to always be there if I don’t have or want to bring my cue.

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muskyed

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Hopefully it stays there. That one might find legs. Really nice cue.
As a tinkerer myself, I have to say, I really enjoy reading your posts.
 

DJEnD

Cocobolo Cracker
Silver Member
Enjoying this thread immensely. Am starting on my repair journey and its good to see someone else having so much fun and learning so much at the same time!
 

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
School was in-session for these three house cue conversions. They were all warped, so the shafts were all just cut offs for scrap. The first to be worked on was the purpleheart posted above and was to be my learning curve cue for a complete conversion including the joint pin. It came out so well it became my “house” cue I leave at my home bar.

There is a guy at the bar I became good friends with. We have enjoyed many late-night pool games and conversations. He is in his early to mid-60’s and has never owned his own pool cue. He has been a bar banger all his life but became genuinely interested in the strategic aspect of ball in hand rules we play in league. After using one of the cues that I converted he requested I make one for him. This cue means a lot being my first for someone and that it is for a friend. His only request was 21oz and not to skinny. Had I known this was going to be such a quest, I would have photographed the cue better in the beginning. So here it goes…

The one on the right is another cue I may mess with later on. The cue on the left is the one I will be posting about here. It was a real fat club of a cue.

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I sanded off the finish (in the middle). I didn’t really have to remove it, since I would be reducing the diameter, but I’m new at this and wanted to see what the natural wood looked like anyway.

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Next came choosing the wood for the butt sleeve. I ended up deciding on Bacote with Primavera/Mahogany rings and a brown phenolic butt plate. After cutting off the chewed-up end of the butt and since the forearm tapered off quickly after the points, I needed to add a tenon to extend the butt to get it back to 29”.

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Interesting note, while boring the butt for the tenon was that the dust was a brilliant yellow. Thanks to AZB for helping me identify the wood as Brazilian Ipe.
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After assembling the butt sleeve, I had to figure out how to reduce the diameter of the entire cue without a taper bar. In the future I will be looking into an offset live center as a more inexpensive alternative until I can justify a bigger taper bar type system. I did get a cross slide mounted dial indicator from the Cueman. All around helpful addition and I could now just use math to calculate the taper.

I divided the cue into 16 pieces and measured the diameter at each end and each segment. Using the projected final joint and butt diameters I calculated what the diameter should be at each segment. Using half the difference between the two diameters I cut into the cue at the segment line with a cut-off blade to that depth. Then I turned down each segment creating uniform steps. These shallow steps I could taper just by eyeballing it. A little sanding and checking with a straight edge I managed to get a pretty even taper. A little hacky but it worked.

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Next came the joint. I cleaned up the end where I cut off the shaft and added a joint collar made from brown phenolic with a black accent ring. The pin is a 5/16-18. Over all everything went smooth and the pin (my second one ever) came out perfect.

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Reducing the diameter obviously lightened the cue. I needed to add a weight bolt to get it back to the 21oz (with shaft). After boring out the butt and tapping it for the bolt, I decided I wanted to use a threaded bumper instead of the push in one I have originally planned on. The hole in the phenolic butt plate was too wide to thread the bumper threads, so I bored it out a little larger in order to fit a wooden plug that was threaded for the bumper.

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For the shaft I made a collar to match the joint. The ferrule is Tomahawk with a Medium Fire Ultraskin tip.

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Now the cue is built It is time for the finish. I will post this process next.
 

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SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
The "Finish" line is in sight!

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Up until now I had been using CA as a finish which was a cheap and inexpensive way to get started. I had been wanting to try an epoxy/Solarez finish, but lacked the equipment. Not totally unhappy with CA, but I liked what I was seeing with the Solarez. After this cue I believe this finish does look better than the CA cues I have done, so if it is more durable like I have heard that is another bonus.

I planned on using my DIY lathe for the finish so my Mid America lathe was not tied up for days waiting on the epoxy to dry. Being this was my first try at this new finish technique I ran some tests using a cheap dowel. The simple motor was not designed to run continuously even at these slow speeds, so I ended up burning out the motor. I ordered a commercial sewing machine motor that could run for long periods of time and have the torque needed for sanding.

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While I was waiting for the new motor to arrive, I needed to fabricate some things I needed. First I bought a Delrin rod to make a non-stick mandrel to hold the joint and a cover for the live center to hold the butt.

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Next was the UV hood for the Solarez application. I rewired 2 UV light strips together and attached them to a board. The hood is made from a corrugated plastic sheet lined with aluminum foil. Simple, cheap, and lightweight.

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Alright then, with the new motor installed it was time for the epoxy. I thought I was ordering MAX 1618 but accidentally ordered MAX CLR. The descriptions were very similar so I decided to just go with it. After 3 coats with a minimum 6 hours in between each coat, I started sanding it down in preparation for the Solarez. The end was in sight when suddenly disaster struck.

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The epoxy layers were delaminating. I was following the process of another cue maker, and I believe I did everything the same. Somehow this person was able to apply the coats without sanding in between and still come out with an amazing finish. Maybe it was experience that allowed him to do it that way, but I failed. I knew this meant I needed to sand if off and try again.

On my second attempt I sanded between coats. This time it was looking great. I was sanding it down in preparation for the top coat and there was no delamination! I stopped the lathe, wiped the cue clean, and then good feeling gone. I noticed tiny white dots near the butt and some near the points. I was about to lose it. After a bit I realized these micro bubbles were a thin layer and I could carefully sand off this thin layer and still be ok.

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Once I was sure I got all the dots, it was time for the Solarez. Three layers, sanding in between each.

Note: I made a vacuum pump from a jar and a brake bleeder to see if I could reduce the micro bubbles in the finish before applying. We will see if it works on the next one.

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After sanding with increasingly finer grits of sandpaper I used polishing compound and then Renaissance Wax. The shaft gets finish on the lower 5.5 inches before cleaning and waxing the rest. Whew done!

I took it for a test run and I will be sad to see it go. It is heavier than I like but the hit really felt great.

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