The difference in equipment, then and now

lfigueroa

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Lou,

You're dreaming.

Smaller pocket do not equal tougher conditions.

Especially when you can move the cue ball without a stroke.

Wake up!

Bill S.

Bill, I'm fully awake and IMO smaller targets makes it tougher for most guys except the savants.

Lou Figueroa
 

NH Steve

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Bill, I'm fully awake and IMO smaller targets makes it tougher for most guys except the savants.

Lou Figueroa
We all agree that the older bigger pockets were easier -- that is obvious. It's all the other improvements to the equipment that favor modern conditions. We all agree on that too, except you Lou.

Of course conditions today vary, but for most major tournaments actually the conditions are pretty consistent -- it's something we can thank Diamond for in fact, because that was the principle guiding force behind Greg Sullivan's motivation to start a table company -- consistent professional playing conditions. He was also involved in developing Simonis 860 as a standard. Maybe you prefer the old nap, lol.
 

Wayne

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We all agree that the older bigger pockets were easier -- that is obvious. It's all the other improvements to the equipment that favor modern conditions. We all agree on that too, except you Lou.

Of course conditions today vary, but for most major tournaments actually the conditions are pretty consistent -- it's something we can thank Diamond for in fact, because that was the principle guiding force behind Greg Sullivan's motivation to start a table company -- consistent professional playing conditions. He was also involved in developing Simonis 860 as a standard. Maybe you prefer the old nap, lol.
Everyone but one can agree but that one that disagrees is still entitled to his stupid opinion.
 

bstroud

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Lou,

You are of course entitled to your opinion.

In my experience I find it difficult to agree with you.

In my practice everyday I run 80 to 100 balls at least once every day. I don't play straight pool and have probably only played a dozen games in my entire life.

I use straight as a practice tool.

I am 74 and I can guarantee that I could never run that many balls on the pre Gold Crown equipment no matter how big the pockets were.

As slow as the tables were and a heavy as the balls were, I would be dead before I finished.

Bill S.
 

lfigueroa

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We all agree that the older bigger pockets were easier -- that is obvious. It's all the other improvements to the equipment that favor modern conditions. We all agree on that too, except you Lou.

Of course conditions today vary, but for most major tournaments actually the conditions are pretty consistent -- it's something we can thank Diamond for in fact, because that was the principle guiding force behind Greg Sullivan's motivation to start a table company -- consistent professional playing conditions. He was also involved in developing Simonis 860 as a standard. Maybe you prefer the old nap, lol.

Actually, I do prefer the heavy cloth. I grew up playing on it at the rooms in San Francisco and a few years ago I had a chance to play on some older style equipment and heavier cloth, courtesy of Mr. Dallas West, and got up and ran somewhere around 70-80 balls right out of the gate. Wouldn't have been able to do that on a Diamond.

Lou Figueroa
 

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lfigueroa

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Lou,

You are of course entitled to your opinion.

In my experience I find it difficult to agree with you.

In my practice everyday I run 80 to 100 balls at least once every day. I don't play straight pool and have probably only played a dozen games in my entire life.

I use straight as a practice tool.

I am 74 and I can guarantee that I could never run that many balls on the pre Gold Crown equipment no matter how big the pockets were.

As slow as the tables were and a heavy as the balls were, I would be dead before I finished.

Bill S.

Did't you just revamp your stroke mechanics, Bill?

Might have something to do with it ;-)

Lou Figueroa
 

onepockethacker

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Speaking of equipment. Last year at the PGA championship they brought back the long drive contest. Louis Oosthuizen won with 340 yards... 1963 Jack Nicklaus won using a wood driver 341 yards I wonder if Jack would hit it longer or shorter today with todays equipment HMMM:confused:
 

bstroud

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Hacker. Sounds like a rhetorical question to me. Is there really any doubt?

Loe,

I have made many changes in the last year to accommodate the Modern equipment. Less wrist (no longer needed to travel great distances), longer bridge (I play with a low squirt shaft), straight back and thru stroke ( for the smaller pockets and soft rolling the ball) a more open stance.

All of the changes have helped me play better on today's equipment.

I had a Gold Crown one with very tight pockets for many years and the pockets were never a challenge. It had Brunsco cloth. Once I put Simoinis Billiard cloth on that table all the problems begin. Skids, overrunning position, losing the cue ball.

When I started back playing a few years ago I was completely lost. On the better days I could play one pocket about Bernie's speed. That may be a good speed for some but I wanted to play much better. So, all the changes.

Wish it was easier.

Bill S.
 

LSJohn

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Speaking of equipment. Last year at the PGA championship they brought back the long drive contest. Louis Oosthuizen won with 340 yards... 1963 Jack Nicklaus won using a wood driver 341 yards I wonder if Jack would hit it longer or shorter today with todays equipment HMMM:confused:
Jim Dent used to win the tour driving average almost every year with 275-280. Now 275 is a short-knocker. :)
 

NJshooter

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Hello all -- so, I'll throw my two cents in here, although no one ever offered me more than a penny for my thoughts! LOL.

First, bottom line, I think overall it's much easier today. I hate being generic, but that's my opinion. I've played for the better part of 50 years and started out playing on bar room tables and went on from there. Playing on the nap cloth to me was like playing in the wind. Like quicksand. Sure it was challenging, you had to know the table and so on.

Second, when I talk to younger players today who say it's "tougher" today -- most of the time after drilling deeper I find they are mostly talking about smaller and tighter pockets. Sure, that's one narrow topic where of course it's tougher. Personally, I like playing on smaller pockets. But it's the tight, very tight pockets that add another dimension of complexity. Even without looking to cheat the pocket, you have to know what's falling and what's not.

Also, I think some of us -- us older guys -- think about when we were playing as kids (yes, back when we were in our 20's and 30's, LOL). I don't know about you guys, but I started with 8-ball, played a little 9-ball here and there, and graduated to straight pool. Years later I got into 9-ball more seriously. Today I play one pocket and that's all. Back when I was a kid it was about sledgehammer breaks and banging balls. Totally different game.

So we are comparing different games with totally different equipment. Regardless, to me, it's easier today. Especially if this is what you were brought up on.

Very good thread. Thanks everyone.
 

Scrzbill

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If anyone prefers the old nappy cloth, old beat up rails, and pockets that leave a mark on the ball, then there is a room in San Jose that is perfect for you. It is a throwback room that has beer and pool. I went there to play, .........once.
 

NJshooter

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Speaking of equipment. Last year at the PGA championship they brought back the long drive contest. Louis Oosthuizen won with 340 yards... 1963 Jack Nicklaus won using a wood driver 341 yards I wonder if Jack would hit it longer or shorter today with todays equipment HMMM:confused:
Good point. Thanks.
 

NH Steve

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Actually, I do prefer the heavy cloth. I grew up playing on it at the rooms in San Francisco and a few years ago I had a chance to play on some older style equipment and heavier cloth, courtesy of Mr. Dallas West, and got up and ran somewhere around 70-80 balls right out of the gate. Wouldn't have been able to do that on a Diamond.

Lou Figueroa
I wonder what Dallas West's take would be on the relative differences between modern equipment and the equipment from the JC era -- he of course did compete during the JC years.
 

gulfportdoc

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... When I started back playing a few years ago I was completely lost. On the better days I could play one pocket about Bernie's speed. That may be a good speed for some but I wanted to play much better. So, all the changes. ...
You wanted to play "much better" than does Bernie? If you're referring to Bernie Pettipiece, I'm wondering who you set your sights on to play like: Pagulayan, Frost?:D

I admire your confident goal setting, Bill!

~Doc
 

Jeff sparks

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In 1970 at the Johnson City tournament I shot at 23 balls in the 5 rack challenge. I believe the tables were Gandy and had 5" pockets. Old type cloth and old school balls. It was hit and miss, I quit it a couple of bets loser.
I was 27 years old then, and was a pretty fair hand with a cue stick.

Today I tried it again. Gold Crown with 4 1/4" pockets, simonis 860 but well worn, new style balls, and a measle CB. I broke poorly but got 3, then 5, then 13, 11, and 10, for 42.
I'm almost 72 now, and I can't play a lick!

Anybody still think it's tougher today???
 

Wayne

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In 1970 at the Johnson City tournament I shot at 23 balls in the 5 rack challenge. I believe the tables were Gandy and had 5" pockets. Old type cloth and old school balls. It was hit and miss, I quit it a couple of bets loser.
I was 27 years old then, and was a pretty fair hand with a cue stick.

Today I tried it again. Gold Crown with 4 1/4" pockets, simonis 860 but well worn, new style balls, and a measle CB. I broke poorly but got 3, then 5, then 13, 11, and 10, for 42.
I'm almost 72 now, and I can't play a lick!

Anybody still think it's tougher today???
Well, according to this and another thread which had people posting on the same topic, I would say there are about 35 who think it is easier today and 1 (the 1 and only 1) who thinks it is tougher today.

However, the 1 and only 1 does not just think it is tougher today but WAY tougher.

:frus:frus:frus

Wayne
 

tylerdurden

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I don't know about the equipment, but I think if you took a good top player from today back in a time machine, he would just fit right in. He would not pounce on everybody, or get murdered, he's just be about where he is in the rankings now.

Even if the player from the future did have a slight edge for a while because he was more offensive minded and that is a better style of play (assuming for sake of argument), the other guys would just catch up in no time and it would be a knock again.

To put it another way, I don't think how the equipment played even matters. It is just who is winning most. That's it. I just don't think it is a very interesting or important question to be answered. Everyone who plays knows how many hundreds somebody ran means nothing, how many wins the guy has means everything.
 

lfigueroa

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I wonder what Dallas West's take would be on the relative differences between modern equipment and the equipment from the JC era -- he of course did compete during the JC years.

I have no idea. We talked about a lot of things but that wasn't one of them.

But regardless, you'd have to be nuts to think today's equipment makes it easier now. Too many guys have rose-tinted glasses on when they think back to their heyday and/or about past heroes.

The players of today have elevated 1pocket to a level the old-timers never dreamed of. Just banking balls cross table, the old tables virtually sucked the balls down if you sent the ball in the general the direction of a pocket.

Lou Figueroa
 

bstroud

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You wanted to play "much better" than does Bernie? If you're referring to Bernie Pettipiece, I'm wondering who you set your sights on to play like: Pagulayan, Frost?:D

I admire your confident goal setting, Bill!

~Doc
Doc,

When I was playing full time years ago and E. Kelly was the best one pocket player I felt confident playing him even. I didn't win but it was close. After two days he was 3 games winner and that was on his home court.

Today I am older but feel fine and after several eye operations can see very well.

Once I master today's equipment I see no reason why I can't play up to my potential.

Lou,

I see you are still asleep.

I watched Hohmann and some others playing straight pool. They really don't have a clue how to play. Watch Crane sometime and see how difficult the game used to be when you couldn't just slam into the rack and hunt and peck your way out.

Crane would take one look and never get out of position, break out a few balls and always shoot the pattern he planned.

By contrast players today change their game plan on almost every shot. Today's equipment gives them a chance to do that. On the older tables that strategy simply wouldn't work.

Just because I think yesterday's playing conditions were tougher I wouldn't want to go back. I like the new conditions. I just need to play more and get used to the changes. There are many.

Trying to play very well on current equiptment is a lot like trying to play English snooker. If you don't grow up playing Snooker on the full size table you will never really be able to compete with the best players. You won't understand the nuances that those players grow up with.

So it's back to practice for another 8 hours.

Bill S.
 

gulfportdoc

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Doc,

When I was playing full time years ago and E. Kelly was the best one pocket player I felt confident playing him even. I didn't win but it was close. After two days he was 3 games winner and that was on his home court.

Today I am older but feel fine and after several eye operations can see very well.

Once I master today's equipment I see no reason why I can't play up to my potential. ...
Well you were definitely in the tall cotton, Bill! Your desire to return to top level play, along with your strong work ethic will certainly reward you. Look forward to meeting you in Houston.

~Doc
 
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