technology

i love watching tennis.  (but wait . . . isn’t this a pool blog?)  😛

while i was watching the wimbledon a while back, one of the commentators mentioned how new technologies in string manufacturing have led to increased spin on tennis balls.  players can hit a shot really hard with tons of spin, so a ball that looks like it’s going out of bounds will dip and drop right inside the lines.  this potentially means that players have to chase down more shots, since the added spins can make the tennis ball do weird things.

i’m not sure what the pool tip technology has done in adding spin to the cueball.  granted, there are bunches of different tips out there, and many are variations of the multilayer style.  also, different leathers are being used to make tips, such as boar or water buffalo.  however, i don’t think there’s a tip that magically add additional spin to the cueball, with the possible exception of elk master tips.  (not sure why, but i get almost uncontrollable draw with elks.  i dislike elks greatly b/c the hit is way too soft with terrible controllability.)  being kind of old fashioned, i like the old-school one-piece tips.  no multilayer for me, thank you.  or wild boar/organic buffalo/angolan python for that matter.

is technology for tips a good thing?  i’m not sure.  i guess if a tip ever hits the market that offers increased spin with controllability, it would ease a lot of frustrations for those that struggle with any kind of spin.  however, i’m not sure if such tips will be beneficial in the long run.  any gadget has the tendency to cause dependence on the user.  look at your cell phone and the internet.  a large portion of society cannot function without the net.  and i dare say most of us are chained to a cell phone.  an effective pool gadget, while useful, can possibly cause undue reliance on the part of the user.  gadgets are great, but if i cannot play pool without a certain gadget, then i’d rather not use it.  i’d rather learn skills i can perform on the table whenever i need to.  for example, i’m learning to jump with a full cue (even if the balls are close together).  i hope to gradually get good enough that i won’t need a jump cue, even though jump cues are great tools to have.  not saying jump cues are bad; i just rather not rely on it all the time.

a somewhat related story here.  arnold palmer once heard someone comment on how golfers used different clubs to hit shots while he & others were on a course.  palmer proceeded to hit 3 balls down the fairway the same distance, using 3 different clubs (a wood, 3 iron, & 5 iron, i think. don’t quote me on it.)  for palmer it was definitely his skills, not the clubs he used.  same with bustamante.  busty can run a rack of balls (in sequence) with a random house cue.  so can efren.  or little al.

like anything, i suppose there will be those that wholeheartedly welcome technology, and those that take pause.  but like someone told me, it’s the shooter, not the cue.  (btw, i love arnold palmers.  so yummy.)

this is off-topic, but i can’t seem to win sarah rousey’s prize giveaway.  either i don’t have the right answer for her quiz or i answer it too late.  arrrrggghhh!!  so frustrating.

also, i’m going to experiment with smaller fonts.  let’s see if it works.

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6 comments on “technology

  1. I know nothing about tips, but all I know is I like mine. I’ve hit a couple of other people’s cue with different tips, but they feel different. Some feel hollow, other’s just does not produce the right sound. It’s all a personal preference, whatever feels good to you.

    Hubby just got another shaft the other day. His second shaft has another type of tip on it. He says that this way he can experiment with different tips to figure out what he likes and dislike.

    Because our cue maker is a 45 minute drive away from us, it’s easy to just change tips.

    Isn’t there a tip that is being banned by certain tournaments? I can’t seem to remember what it was…

    It’s like the Sardo Tight Rack. Once you master how the rack is racked, you learn how to break it so that at least one ball makes it in the pocket. Is this technology good for pool player’s?

    • Isn’t there a tip that is being banned by certain tournaments? I can’t seem to remember what it was…

      it may be the phenolic tip used on break cues. that tip doesn’t change things a whole lot since u can’t shoot w/ phenolic tips. unless there’s another banned tip, then i wouldn’t know.

      It’s like the Sardo Tight Rack. Once you master how the rack is racked, you learn how to break it so that at least one ball makes it in the pocket. Is this technology good for pool player’s?

      excellent point. i think rack technology is good, since it makes the game more fair, and it’s independent of a player’s skill level. however, sardo racks don’t work. my favorite pool hall used them for a while (about a year) until everyone got so tired of the loose racks, and the owner went back to low-tech hard plastic racks. the regulars now cringe at the sight of a sardo rack. wish there’s a rack that really works, but so far i’m leery about gimmicky racks.

      [a clarification. i wrote earlier:

      “i think rack technology is good, since it makes the game more fair, and it’s independent of a player’s skill level.”

      a better way to put it is that improvements in racks don’t interfere with a player’s development of skills. hope that’s more clear.]

      • You’re right, it was a break cue tip that was banned.

        I just remembered something. Darren Appleton was at the TAR booth at SBE 2009 and he was hitting with some guy’s pool cue (Anvil). He hit a couple of balls with it, and said that he needed another cue because he couldn’t hit with that particular one. I guess for some pros it does matter what cue it is that they are using to shoot with.

        • yeah. for some it matters. the extreme end would be the folks who’re always looking for cues. they can’t seem to be happy with any cue. or folks who’re always tweaking with the cue (weight, balance, etc.) i feel bad for those folks.

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