Pool/Billiards/Palmer Pool Cue

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Question
I have a roughly 45 year old Palmer cue that has been unused for many years.  The shaft appears to be in good shape (maybe some cleaning up to restore).  My question is in regards to the ferrule and tip.  The tip is long gone and the process for replacing seems easy enough, however the ferrule is cracked on the edge.  Is this something that can be replaced relatively easy at home or do you suggest spending the money to have it professionally restored?

Answer
I would have it done by a professional unless you want to ruin it. You must have a lathe and experience working one to do it properly. If there is just a small chip in the very top of it you can just grind it down a little bit until it is flat all the way across and then attach the tip. Keep in mind that it will shorten the length of the cue slightly. Palmer cues are usually very valuable. Especially the older ones made before the Eugene Balner died in 1972. The Palmer name was inspired by the famous golfer Arnold Palmer. Eugene didn't think his last name commanded enough prestige for the quality of his cues. He later became known as Gene Palmer instead of Eugene Balner. His family carried on the business long after his death but the early ones are still the most valuable. Some of his one of a kinds are said to be worth up to $7,500.00 or so. Even the least valuable older cue in good condition is probably worth 500.00 at least. Most of his cues came with two shafts and if there is one missing then the Blue Book of Pool Cues says to deduct 175.00 from the overall value. Hopefully this info convinces you to get a competent professional to do the ferrule replacement (if necessary) and tip attachment. Many folks have tried to attach a tip properly only to have it fall off almost immediately and or they will accidentally misshape the ferrule of the shafts wood underneath the ferrule. Once the wood is removed it cannot be put back on. If the ferrule is made of Ivory then that complicates things even further. I believe it's now illegal to trade Ivory in any way. Even the pre ban ivory we used to be able to use until recently is illegal I think. Someone told me the other day it can still be bought but I tried to sell an antique pool table the other day on Ebay and mentioned that it had some Ivory rail sights in it and Ebay took my listing down immediately because my table was not quite 100 years old. That the rule now for antiques that contain Ivory. Apparently they cannot be sold legally at all unless at least 100 years old and do not contain more than 5% Ivory.  

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Stephen Summers

Expertise

I can answer questions with precise answers to just about anything related to billiards. I am very knowledgeable of almost every brand of billiard table / equipment. I have extensive knowledge of many antique pool / billiard / snooker / carom and three cushion billiard tables. I can also answer questions about pool cue repairs.

Experience

I have been working in the billiard industry since 1971. I began working at my father's retail billiard store when I was 8 years old. I have owned my own retail / wholesale billiard supply in OKC., OK since 1998. I have personally worked on just about every type and brand of billiard table that exists. I also repair pool cues everyday. My knowledge in that area is extensive as well. As of this time I have approximately 44 years worth of billiard related experience.

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I am a retail store operator member of the Billiard Congress of America. I am also a member of a Christian Church in OKC., OK.

Education/Credentials
I have a high school diploma and I also went to college for two years. I do not have a degree.

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