How to Break in New Tips on Snooker Cues

white cue ball image by Paul Mitchell from

Good quality snooker cues can be extremely expensive, costing hundreds of dollars and requiring constant care and attention. With attention and care, however, they can last for a great many years. Essential to that is the replacement of the tip, which needs to be done whenever it wears down.

Take off the old tip. The tip is attached to a metal ferrule at the end of the cue, so slide the Stanley knife carefully down between the ferrule and the tip and cut the old tip away.

Clean up the top of the ferrule. You may find that fragments of the old tip remain stuck here, but the surface must be completely clear. Using the sandpaper, gently rub the ferrule until clean.

Apply Super Glue. Use only a drop of it in the very middle of the ferrule to ensure that the glue does not spread over the sides of the cue tip.

Add the new tip. Press it firmly down on the glue, making sure that it rests centrally on the ferrule. Leave it for a few minutes to allow the glue and tip to set.

Once you are sure that the glue has set, sand off the edges of the tip. New tips are usually too large for cues and require shaping, otherwise they will limit the control you can exert while striking the ball. Use the sandpaper, making gentle downward strokes to give the top of the tip shape and rotate carefully around the edges to trim the tip.

Chalk your tip well before use. Make sure to take time before playing powerful spin shots--new tips often take some time to bed in for you to feel comfortable using them. Practice with gentler shots and hitting without heavy spin before you start to expand your repertoire.

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