The Difference Between Wood and Fiberglass Pool Sticks

The Pros and Cons of Your Material Choice

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Pool sticks can be delightful if they are fiberglass... Photo (c) 2008 Cuetec Cues

When your pool game progresses and you're ready to move beyond house cues from your local pool hall, it's time to purchase your own stick. One consideration when searching for a new pool cue is material, as most sticks are made of either wood or fiberglass. The choice largely comes down to personal preference, and many players prefer the feel of traditional wood cues, but there are some pros and cons to each type of stick.

Feel

The main difference between wood and fiberglass pool sticks is simply the feel of hitting the ball. The wood cue is the last word for pool purists, many of whom prefer the feel and sound of hitting with this more traditional material. It provides better "hit feel" than a fiberglass stick, which is typically fiberglass bonded in a spherical shape around a wood core inside the stick. If you can comfortably navigate around the disconnect between the hit and the balls sinking, the fiberglass cue may be a good choice, especially for beginning and intermediate players who are looking for a low-cost, durable cue.

A Case for Fiberglass

Wood cues are the standard choice of most players and, when maintained properly, last as long as fiberglass. Even though wood sticks can be straightened fairly easily, there is a case for keeping a fiberglass cue in your stable: Wood cues don't hold up in hot, muggy places like car trunks, while fiberglass sticks can be stored in such places for easy access on the go.

Also, some players like to use fiberglass for break cues, in particular, because they are a low-cost option for the strong, opening hit that might be more likely to damage a cue.

Cost

Fiberglass cues are by far a cheaper option than wood sticks, which can cost as much as thousands of dollars. Cost shouldn't be the final factor, but this might come into play for beginners or someone looking for a spare stick.

Considerations

Whether you choose a fiberglass or wood cue, you'll need to think about some of the options available on pool cues. Tips can be hard or soft, and either screw on or not. The ferrule, where the tip attaches to the stick, ranges in material from cheaper plastic up to expensive composite or even natural materials. Also, examine the joint to make sure it is solid and tight.