Best Quality Pool Cues for a Gift on a budget
August 1, 2017 2:26 PM   Subscribe

I would like to surprise my friend by replacing his old, warped house cues with at least two new cues at the end of his cancer treatments. I can't afford anything too fancy, but specific details are below the fold...

One of my good friends is going through a sudden, terrible battle with cancer, and I would like to surprise him with an "end of treatment" gift later this month. He's not an avid player, but he has a table at his house, and it's one of the few things he enjoyed doing after an extended workday (and yes, he still likes to play when he has the strength). Most of the cues at his house are either warped, pockmarked, or damaged in other ways, and since it's something we've bonded over, I thought it would be a nice gesture. I spoke with his wife about it, and she thought he would really appreciate it.

I don't think he is serious enough to have a preferred weight or wrap, though his current cues are 2-piece and wrapped in something, maybe a thin faux leather or a basic quality irish-style wrap. I was planning to look for a 19 oz cue, with an irish wrap, or a somewhat nice leather if I can find a deal.

Basically I'm hoping someone can help me find a set of 2 or 4 cues that don't feel cheap and aren't going to fall apart right away. I'd prefer something from a trusted brand so we can get more in the future - or upgrade later if he wants. I do have an Amazon Prime account, but I'm willing to order from elsewhere if the shipping isn't too costly. My budget is probably around $50-75 per cue depending on how many I get, but that may be slightly flexible.

Thanks in advance!
posted by Kimothy to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Standard one-piece house cues are quite cheap, even the good ones, e.g. this Dufferin one which is the kind you'd find in any decent pool hall and plays well if treated well.

The two-piece cues that people take to pool halls in cases are a more complicated matter, generally running to a few hundred dollars for the average hobby players cue. Cheap ones are available of course, but there is a quality tradeoff.
posted by w0mbat at 4:45 PM on August 1 [1 favorite]

My information is not the most current, so take that into consideration, but I have found a lot of value over the years in McDermott cues ( ). They are based in Wisconsin, IIRC, and they (used to) make their cues in North America, though they likely import some now from Asia, too. Their cues are carried by Amazon and are widely sold through out the US.

They have about every variety of cue you can think of, at every price point form cheap to $$$$, but Amazon seems to have a good selection of their McDermott cues for < $75.

Your friend is lucky to have you as HIS friend - hope his recovery goes well!
posted by mosk at 4:47 PM on August 1 [1 favorite]

The two-piece cues that people take to pool halls in cases are a more complicated matter, generally running to a few hundred dollars for the average hobby players cue.

One reason they are more expensive is they can be taken apart and put together again but still play like a solid piece of wood, not necessarily because they play better. People think one-piece cues are crap because they only interact with the beat-up ones you find in pool halls.
posted by Dr Dracator at 11:28 PM on August 1 [1 favorite]

Yeah, straight is the most important by far. Personally I'd lean toward heavier cues, fwiw. I think it's easier to hit lightly with a heavier cue than it is to hit heavier with a lighter one.
posted by rhizome at 12:16 AM on August 2 [1 favorite]

Schmelke makes decent stuff, and their prices are very reasonable. They sell both one and two piece cues, jump cues, bridges, etc.
posted by cosmicbandito at 11:09 AM on August 2 [1 favorite]

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