Who learned from Who - A Cue Makers Lineage

Buddha Jones

The Enlightened One
Silver Member
I am very curious about where the great cue makers that we discuss and even talk to on this forum began their trade and who schooled them. I know some individuals left bigger shops to start their own, I think Scruggs falls into that catagory. But Pechauer, Horn, Helmstetter, BCM, Blud, Tascarella, McWorter, Drexler and Tad, and all the many others out there, how does the family tree go?
 

larrynj1

aka uncle larry
Silver Member
richard helmstetter once managed a cue shop for national chalk, and employed bob muecci and ricco cervantes before they went out on their own. you rarely see a national cue from that era.
 

!Smorgass Bored

Hump ? What HUMP ?
Gold Member
larrynj1 said:
Richard Helmstetter once managed a cue shop for National Chalk, and employed Bob Meucci and Ricco Cervantes before they went out on their own. you rarely see a National cue from that era.

Well, if those rare National cues have a red circle with a large red N enclosed on the butt plate, I have one in my closet.... Doug (what era is that ? I mean, what years ?)
 

blud

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
trade

Buddha Jones said:
I am very curious about where the great cue makers that we discuss and even talk to on this forum began their trade and who schooled them. I know some individuals left bigger shops to start their own, I think Scruggs falls into that catagory. But Pechauer, Horn, Helmstetter, BCM, Blud, Tascarella, McWorter, Drexler and Tad, and all the many others out there, how does the family tree go?

I am self taught. I worked selling meuccies for about 5 or 6 month's. Stopped that and went into repairing cues.
After I started repairing cues, I, learned much from all the cues I repaired. Saw some good cues, not so good cues, and a bunch of junk.

I was reallly not impressed with a lot of cues, I was and worked on. However, Buddy Hall, is responsible for me making cues. He parked his motor home in my driveway, and would not move it till I built him a cue.

A little more back ground,

I was raised in the shipyard industry, [BLUDWORTH SHIPYARDS INC.]. in Houston. I learned a lot from my dad about wood working, at an early age. We built many sail boats together, along with duck-hunting boats, canoes, mast for our sail boats, and a couple of homes and offices that we built together.

I did a lot of wood working at the shipyard, including wood trim work on big river boats, and off shore tugs.

At one time I also built wooden arrows. I was an excellent archer, [state champion twice, junior and senior divisions], so it was kind natural for me to build arrows. At 12 I had a hell of a business. Also, building sail boats and sailing came as one hobby. My family was well known for there sailing ability around the world, so I got lucky and won a few races. State, and North american sailing champion,single handed and multi-crew[again junior and senior divisions] and Southern circit ocean racing.Lots of fun, and lots of girls.

I was a drop out deluxe. Yes, I quit school 2 weeks into the 9th grade. Moved away from home.[spelling, can't you tell]????

I also built fishing rods, and fly-rods, at the early age of 12.

Some place in all this, came the girls, and lots of them.

Went to the pool-hall at 14...

Now married for 43 years, and have a great partner, [my wife, Janice].

Life's been a pretty good ride for me and Janice........

god bless you all.

blud
 

larrynj1

aka uncle larry
Silver Member
the red circled "n" cues were made overseas, the american made ones have national spelled out on the butt plate.

not sure of the years, it's in either the billiard encyclopedia or the blue book.
probably under helmstetter.
 

blud

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
more bushings

Buddha Jones said:
Thanks Blud, that is good stuff!

Thank you sir,
It was a little more than you ask for, but I was on a roll. I felt like it would help to explain my up experances.
blud
 

i210mfu

Markus
Silver Member
Who learnbed from who: EUROWEST

Well, Eurowest Cues (Andreas Stahl) learned the trade from no other than Bill Stroud (Joss West). They also bought his old machinery. I know the cues are not very well known in the US but they are here in Europe (the "old world" according to Mr. Rumsfeld).
I attached the current brochure of the models and a picture of my custom made one (last picture). They have an unbelievable good hit and needless to say that they meet German quality standards :) (just like the cars we build, not to offend anyone here but why shouldn't we be proud of it)

Regards,
Markus
 

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larrynj1

aka uncle larry
Silver Member
markus,

i have a german cue , brand name is "robertson", and signed and made by ricco cervantes. i can't find anything about them on the web. are they still in business in germany? do you know anything about their connection to ricco cervantes? thanks.
 

!Smorgass Bored

Hump ? What HUMP ?
Gold Member
larrynj1 said:
markus,

i have a german cue , brand name is "robertson", and signed and made by ricco cervantes. i can't find anything about them on the web. are they still in business in germany? do you know anything about their connection to ricco cervantes? thanks.

Ricco Cervantes worked for/at Robertson Billiard Supplies in Tampa,Fl. Ricco was known for inlaying segments of gold links (like in a gold bracelet) into his cues. Ricco got cancer and the outlook was bleak. Richard Powell bought up all (most) of Ricco's stock of cues and Ricco headed home to Mexico to family and treatments. The good news is that Ricco's cancer went into remission. Ricco was in the habit of returning to Tampa every six months or so and doing any needed work or repairs on his cues, though I haven't seen him in some time. A good friend of mine bought a Ricco gold inlay cue priced at $1,000 and when he tried to sell it, he was only able to get $300 after repeatedly lowering the price for about a month. Robertson's is still in business and should be able to answer any further questions at 1-813-229-2778... Doug
 

larrynj1

aka uncle larry
Silver Member
thanks doug. i did a search awhile back and came up with robertson cues listed by a german company. that's why i thought they were german.

also, national started its' cue shop with helmstetter, meucci,cervantes, and craig peterson in 1967. i don't know how long they lasted. they must have made some great cues with that amount of talent.
 

Murray Tucker

Just a Padawan
Silver Member
Buddha Jones said:
I am very curious about where the great cue makers that we discuss and even talk to on this forum began their trade and who schooled them. I know some individuals left bigger shops to start their own, I think Scruggs falls into that catagory. But Pechauer, Horn, Helmstetter, BCM, Blud, Tascarella, McWorter, Drexler and Tad, and all the many others out there, how does the family tree go?

I was born a machinist. I am the third generation to run our family business which is a fabrication and machine shop (www.tuckerbilt.com if you are interested). I have been running lathes, mills and other equipment since I was so small that I had to stand on a box to work the handles. I passed my welders certification tests when I was seven and now, at age 36, I am still certified to AWS D1.1 and D1.4

I started playing pool at about age 18. The very first time I ever went into a pool hall I found out that I could not be happy with a house cue and bought a two piece. It was a plain McDermot and later on I upgraded to a fancier one. All along I had it in the back of my mind that I wanted to build a cue someday.

That day came in 1999 when a wood working catalog came to my address by mistake. I ordered some wood and got started. I made a 40" taper bar and fitted it to a old SouthBend that we had taken out of service years ago but had never goten rid of. The first cue was born in November after three failed attempts. Since then I have lost count of how much money I have spent on tools, wood etc but that SouthBend is still my favorite lathe. I used to cut both shafts and butts in it but I ended up buying a table saw machine so now the lathe is just for tapering butts.

Cues are just a hobby for me and I only build a few cues every year. My family and job come first but I love to lock myself in the work shop and make saw dust!
 

bandido

Player Power!
Silver Member
Like Blud I was self-taught. I went to a Technical school when I was in high school and thus have been working with machinery since I was 1st year (US 8th grade) then took Engineering and Fine Arts in college. Aside from these studies, I was free to use all the equipment in my dad's businesses as I was growing up. He owned a handicraft factory that had a storefront in the US East Coast back in the late 60s/early 70s, a bus and cab company then finally an electronic components factory making TO92 package transistors.

I learned most about cuemaking going to trade shows but basically more from the x-rays and repair work that I did. I'd say that my first cues (1988) were influenced by Schon as I had an SP-34 back then to really scrutinize.

There have been some disadvantages for not being under the watchful eye of an experienced cuemaker. I had to do a lot of research and experimentation just to find the right adhesives and finishes that'll work right for different materials and wood species. I learned to develop my structural system from deciphering, and incorporating into existing knowledge, the playability feedbacks from pros and roadplayers who tried out my cues and this made my road trips with Scott Richardson invaluable.

The upside of being self taught is being minimally influenced by another cuemaker when it comes to design and developing an attitude of always searching for a better way to do things.
 
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