It depends on the type of cue you have! Some tips can last up to a year while others need to be changed every few months. The best way to find out when it’s time is to periodically test your tip with a coin or even your fingernail. You should only be able to feel the first milled (machine cut) diamond on the surface. If you can see or feel any other diamonds on your cue tip, it’s time for a new one.
Another way is to tap your fingernail on the face of your cue; if it sounds different than when you first put the tip on, you need to change it.
You should also periodically check your cue’s taper, which is the small cylindrical piece of wood that fits into the larger, thick end of the cue (commonly called a “butt”), and screws into the thinner end (commonly called a “handle”). If you can see or feel any cracks (which means your cue is drying out), you need to change the taper as well.
The last thing you’ll want to check is if there are any cracks or checks (cracks with lines running through them) in the wood on either end of your cue. If there are, it’s time for a new one.
Lastly, after a while of use, the tip may begin to loosen from the rest of the cue. To check for this, you should put your finger on the tip and gently twist it in a clockwise motion, if it seems tight in its collar (the threaded piece that holds it in place), then it’s still fine. If not, you’re going to need a new tip.
When you put the new tip on, be sure not to apply too much pressure when “ironing” it back into place. This will help ensure that your tip lasts for as long as possible. Do this using an iron or hot towel, and make sure the tip is centered evenly on the cue’s face.
If you do all of this (or as much as possible), you should be able to get about a year or more out of your tip.
How often should I scuff my cue tip?
This depends on how often you play. If you play at least once a week, scuffing is not necessary. If you play less than that, it would be wise to scuff your cue tip before each use. This will allow chalk to adhere better and will prevent miscues. One way to scuff your tip is by brushing the side of the tip with your cue chalk until you see or feel a small, white line on the side of the tip. Then you want to make sure that the white line is gone before each hit. If it’s not, continue brushing until it does disappear. This will ensure that your tip is clean and smooth for every shot you take.
How much does it cost to replace a pool cue tip?
This varies depending on what type of tip you want to use. A basic, no-frills tip generally costs between $2 and $5. However, if you put a special dot or scuff plate (a hard plastic accessory that is heat-pressed onto the tip) on your end it can cost around $15 to $20. For a tip with a leather sleeve (a rubberized piece of plastic that goes around the tip) it can cost up to $25.
Of course, you could always get your own custom-made laminated tips for an even higher price. These can range anywhere from $15 to $100 depending on what type of design you’re looking for.
What is the best tip size for a pool cue?
Typically, when it comes to pool cues the standard tip size is 12.75mm or 13mm. This is large enough that you can apply enough force behind your shot without splitting the tip, which would lead to an immediate miscue.
What are some good tips for taking care of my cue stick?
To ensure you get the most life out of your cue, wipe it down after each use with a micro-fiber cloth. This will make sure that any dirt or debris doesn’t cause the wood to warp over time.
To prevent your cue from warping, leave it in its case when you’re not using it after every use. Warped cues can lead to inconsistencies in your shots, which could lower your level of play.
Also, feel free to apply a layer of cue wax or a laminated tip preservative (which comes in a spray can) after every use. This will make it easier for the tip to hold chalk and prevent miscues.
How much does it cost to fix a warped pool cue?
If your cue has been warped, it is going to cost you some money. In fact, the price of a new tip alone could probably pay for a full replacement. Typically, you can expect to spend at least $15 or more on a new tip, so with that being said you might want to consider the alternative.