Why Did They Settle On Maple?

HUKIT

F* ks Given...Zero
Silver Member
So Mr. Bonds thread regarding the Rambow peaked my curiosity, with all the different types of woods available why did everyone settle on maple and the snooker guys using ash?

The shaft has spliced Ebony on the tip and the butt has a flattened area (for crocheting the ball, legal shot up to 1930) which is covered in Abalone shell.* The cue is dated to 1903 but was made up to 1915.* This cue was made by Rambow while employed by Brunswick and is considered the most rare cue in existence.*


Ebony shaft with ivory ferrule and a pair of full spliced ebony points
 

JoeyInCali

AzB Gold Member
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Pool balls are heavier than snooker balls.
Maple is stiffer and more dense than Ash.
 

PoppaSaun

Banned
Pool balls are heavier than snooker balls.
Maple is stiffer and more dense than Ash.

Your sources must be different than mine. Everything I find shows hard maple to be heavier and the modulus of elasticity to be about the same.

It is more about what is available and where. Ash is very prevalent throughout europe. Maple is very prevalent in north america.

Add to that how easily maple works and the fine grain, it makes for a very good wood for cues and mass production.
 

Jon Manning

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Your sources must be different than mine. Everything I find shows hard maple to be heavier and the modulus of elasticity to be about the same.

It is more about what is available and where. Ash is very prevalent throughout europe. Maple is very prevalent in north america.

Add to that how easily maple works and the fine grain, it makes for a very good wood for cues and mass production.

This is what I understand the reasoning to be, from the conversations I've had with a few well established cue makers.
Maple is the best readily available and best material in North America. Ash is all that for Europe.
The best overall... think that is just a matter of preference. Although, I prefer the grain structure of Maple over Ash.
 

JoeyInCali

AzB Gold Member
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This is what I understand the reasoning to be, from the conversations I've had with a few well established cue makers.
Maple is the best readily available and best material in North America. Ash is all that for Europe.
The best overall... think that is just a matter of preference. Although, I prefer the grain structure of Maple over Ash.

Sorry, not from what I've seen.
Maple is harder on the surface.
The ash shaft that I've seen are whippier compared to maple .

Plenty of ash here too. Baseball bats ?
Only a few players use maple ( Barry Bonds made them infamous, I think .https://rundown.maruccisports.com/2015/07/08/maple-vs-ash/
 

PoppaSaun

Banned
Sorry, not from what I've seen.
Maple is harder on the surface.
The ash shaft that I've seen are whippier compared to maple .

Plenty of ash here too. Baseball bats ?
Only a few players use maple ( Barry Bonds made them infamous, I think .https://rundown.maruccisports.com/2015/07/08/maple-vs-ash/

The ash shafts I've seen weren't any more flexible than comparable maple.

Hard maple doesn't grow in Europe. Given the grain structure of maple vs. ash, not to mention the ease of working hard maple, I think it is safe to say that they found a better wood for pool cues in north america.

Pool isn't baseball. They also use hickory for baseball bats.

But, believe what you want, no need to acknowledge any logic based on...logistics.
 

WildWing

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Those who play Snooker like the Chevrons on the ash shaft. Those are the points that come out when they put the filler in. They hold the cue in the same position each time, with the wedge cutout at the base, so the Chevrons are an aid to aim.

All the best,
WW
 

9ballrob

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
It didn't hurt that the most common tree in Michigan is the maple. The main manufacturing plant for BBC was in Muskegon at the turn of the century.
 

JoeyInCali

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Is it better to use ash or maple?

They are both very good timbers and I couldn’t express a preference for either. Generally speaking, maple is a denser wood and is harder than ash. If you wanted a maple cue to play like ash, you tend to need a slightly smaller tip diameter. If you had two cues identically built, both with a 10mm ferrule, and you play shots with side spin then you could find the maple throws the cue ball off more. It would need to be around 9.5mm to play more like the ash cue. Ash has a very visible grain whereas maple is more plain to look at and possibly easier on the eye. Stephen Maguire swapped from ash to maple because his stubble used to get caught in the grain of the cue which could bring tears to his eyes. Lots of others use maple, including Stephen Hendry who won seven world titles and made nearly 800 centuries using a Powerglide Connoisseur.
http://www.worldsnooker.com/all-about-cues/
 

HUKIT

F* ks Given...Zero
Silver Member
So why doesn’t anyone use the more exotic woods? I’m sorry I didn’t make that very clear.
 

Black-Balled

He Rides the Skies
Silver Member
So why doesn’t anyone use the more exotic woods? I’m sorry I didn’t make that very clear.

Can't say no one does

but for consistency...core that mufugga and put whatever you want around it
 
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qbilder

slower than snails
Silver Member
European ash is only slightly lighter than our sugar maple, and rated at the same hardness. It's slightly harder and same weight as our white ash. Our hardest soft maple, red, is considered soft maple ONLY because it's 25% softer than sugar maple, but it's not actually a soft wood. European maple falls between our red & sugar maples, and I suspect is what is commonly used in the French billiard & pool cues. Regardless, having cut & milled all the mentioned American timbers, as well as worked with all the woods mentioned, my choice of cue wood will always be sugar maple. It's harder & stronger than any of the other maples or ashes. It doesn't surprise me that would also be the sentiment of those who normalized the use of sugar maple in cues.

As for other woods & exotics, nothing else really lends itself to cues the way maple does. Maple is simply unrivaled, IMO. The texture, weight, stiffness & strength all fall into that magic window of perfect.
 

Kim Bye

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Here in Norway, we have Acer platanoides, or "Norway maple" wich is harder than regular soft bigleaf maple (Acer macrophyllum) yet not as hard as Sugar maple (Acer saccharum)
I`ve been trying for some time now to find someone who sells logs or blanks, so I can turn some and see how that compare, but no luck yet...
my point I guss, is that maple is a big family of trees :)

So why doesn’t anyone use the more exotic woods? I’m sorry I didn’t make that very clear.
Exotic woods are used, purpleheart (Peltogyne) might be the most common exotic(?) wood. But It`s pretty dense compared to sugar maple and really only works for break and jump shafts.
Hornbeam (Carpinus betulus) is also quite comparable to sugar maple, I`m actually making some shafts from it as we speak.
I have seen ebony and bubinga shafts too, but they are heavy and have no feel to them.
 
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Jon Manning

AzB Silver Member
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Sorry, not from what I've seen.
Maple is harder on the surface.
The ash shaft that I've seen are whippier compared to maple .

Plenty of ash here too. Baseball bats ?
Only a few players use maple ( Barry Bonds made them infamous, I think .https://rundown.maruccisports.com/2015/07/08/maple-vs-ash/

I don't have any issue with someone disagreeing with me, actually I quite enjoy it. When it come to Maple vs Ash, I have no hands on experience, just a mind that asks lots of questions to those who I trust to have the answers (the cue makers I mentioned).
When you mentioned bats, I don't think that's comparing apples to apples. With cues all the force is applied to the end grain, where the force is applied laterally with bats.
Anyways, I'm interested to know what, in your opinion is the best material for shafts? And why?
 

pdcue

AzB Silver Member
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Pardon my resorting to facts... but, the Brits go to great lengths to stipulate they use North American Ash.

Dale
 

trophycue

AzB Silver Member
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So why doesn’t anyone use the more exotic woods? I’m sorry I didn’t make that very clear.

The very simple answer is , maple and ash are the most shock absorbent woods . Ash being slightly more so. And yes North American ash is prized in Europe.
 

greyghost

Coast to Coast
Silver Member
The very simple answer is , maple and ash are the most shock absorbent woods . Ash being slightly more so. And yes North American ash is prized in Europe.



The term your looking for is modulus of elasticity.....and modulus of rupture , going off these your conclusion is false


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greyghost

Coast to Coast
Silver Member
The term your looking for is modulus of elasticity.....and modulus of rupture , going off these your conclusion is false


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Maple gives a fine smooth finish because it is diffuse porous. Which gives makes the cells spacing closer together, as such density is higher, and the wood is more consistent in its hardness through and through, less chance for structural deficiencies, less air means a more solid feel.....to which we see many complain about in the hollow chambered maple shafts, a hollow dead feel.....oak shafts are reminiscent of this unless it's quericus virginia (live oak) as it's much much more dense than other species of oak (60+lbs/cubic foot) but oak shifts and moves horribly, especially live oak. (Stability in maple is another reason for its use....straight grain)

As stated by chance there's also a butt load of maple in the USA/Canada.

The density of the wood and its ability to transfer shock and its flexibility combined are why maple is and has been the go to as far back as any of us knows.

The games really old and I'm sure many variations were tried originally the bad ideas tossed and the good ones continued to be used.

As an example fouetté style shots done by artistic players like shafts of cherry sycamore and alisiar wood because they offer more flexibility than your standard maples.


Remember too as I mentioned it is easy to attain a fine finish with maple on just the bare wood, it's also much easier to machine and cut than the majority of woods we typically use in cue construction...... which is also another major aspect of consideration.....ease of manufacturing.

Good thing we're lucky that it has such wonderful characteristics that lend its hand to a great game of pool, snooker or billiards.

-grey ghost


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trophycue

AzB Silver Member
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The term your looking for is modulus of elasticity.....and modulus of rupture , going off these your conclusion is false


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Wrong........I said simple answer. And i am not looking for your terms . It's not my conclusion it's a simple proven scientific fact . Your trying to sound like some kind of genius,,,,,,,,but coming off as bozo the clown . Go rupture your elasticity and check out facts !!
 

greyghost

Coast to Coast
Silver Member
Wrong........I said simple answer. And i am not looking for your terms . It's not my conclusion it's a simple proven scientific fact . Your trying to sound like some kind of genius,,,,,,,,but coming off as bozo the clown . Go rupture your elasticity and check out facts !!



It's common cue guy lingo....sorry sweetheart.

Regardless maple is by no means the most shock absorbing wood. If shock absorbance was the tits in cues we would be fuggin corking them instead of coring.

If shock absorbance was the top reason we also wouldn't see all these cues made out of maple and a harder exotic behind it. They would all be maple.




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