best pool cues for beginners

Before you rack the balls and break, you’re going to want to arm yourself with a great cue.

If you’re a beginner, you’ll want to find a cue that’s easy to handle, durable, sized correctly and straight.

This post includes information that will help you understand what factors to look for in a new cue, along with several of the best choices for novice players.

Let’s take a look at what makes for the best pool cues for beginners.

Factors to Consider When Selecting a Beginner Pool Cue

Before getting started, it is essential to learn about what to look for in a stick. There are several elements to consider when choosing among the best pool cues for beginners.

Materials

Consider the stick and wrap materials. The sticks that are maple tend to be the most durable and simplest to find regarding beginner cues.  Durability is key, especially when you’re playing multiple games of eight-ball.

A good wrap material makes it easier to grip the cue. Linen and nylon are good choices when you are starting out.

Size and Weight

Ultimately, the best size and weight comes down mostly to personal preference. The average weight is 18 to 21 ounces. The average length is 57 to 59 inches. It is a good idea to hold several cues to see which ones feel the best.

If you are relatively short, a stick that is shorter is usually good. The same goes for being tall. Consider a taller cue. As for weight, about 20 ounces is generally ideal for beginners since more heft can result in better ball spin.

If you are looking for a heavier stick for smashing the rack, it might be time to consider a breaking cue.

One-Piece vs. Two-Piece

If you tend to travel with your stick to bars or billiard halls, a two-piece pool cue is easier to transport. A one-piece is ideal for home play. Which one is better ultimately comes down to your personal preference and where you play most often.

Balance Point

The balance point on a cue is a few inches from the wrap’s end, close to the center of the stick. This point is your cue’s center of gravity.

A perfect balance point allows for better handling of the cue. Hold and play with cues with different balance points to determine which you prefer.

Straight Design

A straight design allows for better aim, and smoother follow through when you strike the ball. Place your cue on a table and see if it lies flat on the surface. You should not see any warping or curves. This is a good technique to check any cue you play with, especially when choosing among limited options at your local bar.

Tip Type

The average tip size is 11 to 14 millimeters. When you are starting out, consider a tip of 12 to 13 millimeters. A softer tip, such as one that is made out of leather or rubber, is typically a better choice for beginners because it allows you to feel the cue when it hits the ball.

Top Picks for Beginner Cues

Now that you know what to look for in a new stick, here are a few of the best pool cues for beginners.

#1 McDermott Classic Pool Cue Kit

McDermott Classic Pool Cue KitThe McDermott Classic Pool Cue Kit comes with a maple wood cue and the accessories necessary to start playing. The pool cue has some nice features for beginner players.

For example, you can improve your ball control with the leather tip. And the ultra-high urethane coating protects the stick.

The wood to wood joint promotes a straight stick for optimal aim when striking the ball. The cue has a classic design with four overlay points.

Pros

  • American maple wood material
  • 13-millimeter leather tip
  • Includes a soft case
  • Has a tip shaper/scuffer
  • Multiple sizes available

Cons

  • No wrap
  • May warp prematurely

McDermott Classic Pool Cue Kit Price: $65.00 McDermott Classic Pool Cue Kit Full Disclosure: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Last Updated: 09/15/2018

#2 Mizerak Shorty Cue

Mizerak Shorty Cue

The Mizerak Shorty Cue features a classic wood shaft and a leather tip. This cue is ideal for beginners and playing in small areas because it is only 40 inches long. It’s works well for both small and full-sized tables.

This stick is one piece, and it has a standard butt end. Its small size allows for greater control for general play and jump shots.

Pros

  • Hardwood construction
  • 12-millimeter leather tip
  • It weighs approximately 9.5 Ounces
  • Ideal for jump shots
  • Suitable for players of all ages

Cons

  • Middle part might be uneven
  • The cue may prone to dents and nicks
  • The tip might not be completely flat

Mizerak 40-Inch Shorty Cue (1 Piece) Price: $9.99 Mizerak 40-Inch Shorty Cue (1 Piece) Full Disclosure: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Last Updated: 09/15/2018

#3 Viper Commercial One-Piece Cue

Viper Commercial Beginner Pool CueThe Viper Commercial One-Piece Cue is ideal for beginners looking for a cue for high-volume use. This stick is hardwood and has multiple varnish coats for extra durability.

It is ideal for people of all ages due to the various lengths available. This cue features an ABS bumper, and its design makes it suitable for tight spaces.

Pros

  • Prevents warping with nine layers of varnish coating
  • Four length options
  • 13-millimeter leather tip
  • Weighs approximately one pound, depending on the length
  • Hardwood construction

Cons

  • Wood might be too light
  • May wobble
  • Might be dimensionally inaccurate

Viper Commercial/House Maple Billiard Cue Price: $20.49 Viper Commercial/House Maple Billiard Cue Full Disclosure: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Last Updated: 09/15/2018

#4 Iszy Billiards Two-Piece Maple Cue

Iszy Billiards 2 Piece Beginner CueThe Iszy Billiards Two-Piece Maple Cue is Canadian maple hardwood for superior durability. The stainless steel joint lines up evenly and allows for fast assembly. This cue features a 13-millimeter fiber ferrule tip.

The handle is wrapped in Irish linen for added style and to promote for efficient handling. At the butt’s bottom, there is a protective bumper. This comes in handy for family use or playing in tighter spaces.

Pros

  • Two-piece design for easy transport
  • Stainless steel joint
  • Four weight options
  • Comes in eight colors
  • Quality materials

Cons

  • The tip might be too hard
  • The cue may warp prematurely
  • The thread may fray or unwind too quickly

Iszy Billiards Cue with Irish Wrap Price: $33.22 Iszy Billiards Cue with Irish Wrap Full Disclosure: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Last Updated: 09/15/2018

#5 T&R Sports Billiard Two-Piece Cue

T&R Sports Hardwood Cue Stick

The T&R Sports Billiard Two-Piece Cue features Irish linen wrap handles and a black body. The total stick length is 58 inches, and it has a 13-millimeter tip that glues onto the cue. The stick’s construction and materials allow for high-level power and spin performance.

The cue is lightweight, making it easy to control. Assemble the stick easily with the durable stainless steel joint that lines up evenly. This cue is straight, ensuring optimal aim when striking the ball.

Pros

  • Stainless steel center joint
  • Real wood core and composite construction
  • It weighs 19.5 ounces
  • Breaks down quickly for portability
  • Professional look

Cons

  • The Irish linen wrap may take time to adapt to
  • Tips may come loose easily
  • The tip might be difficult to shape

T&R Sports Billiard Cue with Steel Joint Price: $35.99 T&R Sports Billiard Cue with Steel Joint Full Disclosure: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Last Updated: 09/15/2018

#6 EastPoint Sports Deluxe Wood Cue

Easpoint Sports 2-Piece Deluxe Beginners CueThe EastPoint Sports Deluxe Wood Cue features a nylon grip to promote optimal control and comfort. The two-tone aesthetic and hardwood material give it a professional look. This cue is 57 inches long.

This cue weighs 19 ounces, allowing for ease of use. The joint system is aluminum, ensuring durability. Choose between a two-piece or four-piece cue.

Pros

  • Comprised of a hardwood composite
  • 13-millimeter tip
  • Straight cue
  • Unscrews quickly and easily
  • Ideal for tight spaces

Cons

  • The grip may come apart prematurely
  • The tip might be of less quality than expected
  • The tip might require shaping before use

EastPoint Sports Deluxe Wood Billiard Cue Price: $14.99 EastPoint Sports Deluxe Wood Billiard Cue Full Disclosure: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Last Updated: 09/15/2018

#7 Minnesota Fats Hustler Graphite Cue

Minnesota Fats Graphite Cue for All Around UseThe Minnesota Fats Hustler Graphite Cue comes in several colors, including traditional black and midnight blue. It is durable due to a maple and polymer resin core, and graphite construction. This material combination helps to prevent warping with regular play.

This two-piece stick features a standard nickel tip. The grips are high-tech and a bit bigger compared to similar cues, allowing for flexibility in where you place your hands. The joints are stainless steel, ensuring a straight stick for optimal shooting and aim.

Pros

  • Durable construction
  • Quality grips
  • Stainless steel joints
  • Clean shooting
  • It is easy to control

Cons

  • Rougher finish
  • May crack easily
  • Difficult to remove the decorative stickers

Minnesota Fats Graphite Cue Price: $39.95 Minnesota Fats Graphite Cue Full Disclosure: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. Last Updated: 09/15/2018

Rack ‘Em Up!

With so many options for the best beginner pool cues, it can certainly be challenging to make the final decision. The seven cues discussed here are an excellent place to start.

Just be mindful of your personal preferences and the style of billiards you want to learn and where you want to excel.

Hopefully this information will help you narrow down your choices so you choose a cue that elevates your billiards skills.

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