Problems with breakshots? This may help.

sparkle84

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
There've been many posts here on problems with BS's. Getting stuck, scratching, etc, etc.
IMO one big problem is choice of BS. This is often exacerbated by commentators on videos saying it's too low or too high.
Too close to the rack, too far away. They might be better served by pointing out that a particular BS will cause the CB to contact the middle of the side of the rack. Oh, wait a minute, those are the ones they usually recommend. Unfortunately they're advocating those BS's when in fact they are the most problematic
and should be avoided. Those type of shots produce a much higher % of scratches and being left uptable. Also getting stuck but that phenomenon is kind of exclusive to amateurs due to an inaccurate stroke.
The main consideration in choice of BS's should be CB point of contact on the rack. Next would be ease of getting the correct angle to have the CB "naturally" strike that point. Once those criteria are achieved everything else usually takes care of itself.
With side of rack BS's top ball is best, bottom 2 balls are next and middle is worst. Simply following that guideline will drastically improve your BS results.

What prompted this post was I finally got done watching the Alex/Kevin Clark video. Took awhile because the beginning featured some not so stellar play and the commentator is far from my favorite.
It does however, once Alex got a feel for the balls, tend to illustrate my assertions about BS's. Start watching at 435:00 which is the end of the 2nd game. From there and on thru the rest of the video watch the results of the BS's. One nice feature was many of them are shown in slo-mo so contact points and CB behavior are easily discernible. I think you'll note that going full into the top ball produces the best results by far.
When given a choice I'll go with the high BS every time as long as reasonably full contact on the top ball is achievable. Try it, you'll like it.
 

justnum

Principal Investigator of Magic Trick Shots
Silver Member
The problem with accuracy on a break shot is due to hitting the object ball with thin fractional ball hits.

Accuracy with fuller ball hits is easier because its a wide margin.

In the long term what is more favorable? Fuller ball hits or thinner ball hits.

Personally I like fuller ball hits because thinner ball hits take more thinking.
 

JusticeNJ

Four Points/Steel Joints
Silver Member
Interesting - my issues lately have been CB position after the break shot - specifically this scenario here:
(go to 15:45 if not timestamped).

On the "good angle" "follow side" break, it's not unusual for me to wind up on the head rail by following off the pack, into the foot rail, and way up stream. I don't often scratch like that in the bottom corner pockets, but it happens occasionally.

Should I be drawing this? Am I over hitting it? It feels weird softly following this into the stack.
 
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JusticeNJ

Four Points/Steel Joints
Silver Member
Too high though, and you risk scratching cross-side.
I've also followed straight into the opposite corner pocket on the high break shot with follow - the follow takes after hitting the head ball. I did that on an 84 ball run shooting the break shot. Brutal.

That being said - I've found the high break shot preferable in terms of controlling the CB.
 
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Dan White

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Interesting - my issues lately have been CB position after the break shot - specifically this scenario here:
(go to 15:45 if not timestamped).

On the "good angle" "follow side" break, it's not unusual for me to wind up on the head rail by following off the pack, into the foot rail, and way up stream. I don't often scratch like that in the bottom corner pockets, but it happens occasionally.

Should I be drawing this? Am I over hitting it? It feels weird softly following this into the stack.
That happens all the time to me from that angle if I don't put some outside or inside on the shot. Willie says to put some outside on the shot to allow the cue ball to bump into the rack area and not find its way up table. Sometimes I find inside and a bit softer brings the cue ball to center table and out of trouble. I often do not get good a good spread on my table so this is a good option.
 

justnum

Principal Investigator of Magic Trick Shots
Silver Member
I've been trying a mild stun follow or stun draw shot on the break.
I want to be on the on the side with action.

My issues with staying close to the rack after the break is the break doesn't spread the balls as well as I'd like. To keep the run going I take a second break into the cluster, which is not always well planned out.
 

sparkle84

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Interesting - my issues lately have been CB position after the break shot - specifically this scenario here:
(go to 15:45 if not timestamped).

On the "good angle" "follow side" break, it's not unusual for me to wind up on the head rail by following off the pack, into the foot rail, and way up stream. I don't often scratch like that in the bottom corner pockets, but it happens occasionally.

Should I be drawing this? Am I over hitting it? It feels weird softly following this into the stack.
Dan has the right idea, hit it with plenty of right. Actually you can watch yourself executing a similar shot correctly. At 8:40 of your 74 run from 2020 you have basically the same shot. You're hitting the 3rd ball up from the bottom instead of the 2nd but other than that the shot is almost identical.
 
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