McDermott was voted the best brand of pool cues according to Ranker.com. And for good reason. McDermott has a long history of innovation and top-notch quality. Couple that with their unique style and superior attention to detail and you can see why 40+ professional players use their cues. And with 95+ major tournaments won using their cues, you know they bring a lot to the table.
If you’ve been considering buying a McDermott cue but aren’t quite sold, continue reading to learn about McDermott’s history, cue making process, attention to detail, quality, and customer satisfaction. By the end of this article you’ll know for sure if McDermott cues are for you.
How Long Have McDermott Cues Been Around?
McDermott pool cue manufacturing began in 1975. Jim McDermott a pool cue repairman joined efforts with cue craftsman Rollie Welch. As a repairman Jim observed mistakes in the pool cue industry and became a visionary in the cue manufacturing business, determined to improve traditional cues. Milwaukee, Wisconsin is where McDermott Cue Manufacturing, Inc. came alive introducing ten different cues ten years after Jim and Rollie joined forces. McDermott pool cues remain American made!
Ownership began to change in 1994 when McDermott Cue Manufacturing, Inc. was sold to various people including Jim’s son Jesse. Ownership changed again in 2009. Thankfully Larry Liebel, Executive Vice President who had been with McDermott for over 30 years, remained helping to ensure the McDermott quality and tradition stayed the same but enhanced. Jim McDermott remained involved in production of the cues such as the highly coveted Cue of the Year models. He passed away on February 27, 2014, but not without leaving an industry legacy.
What Makes McDermott Cues Unique?
McDermott cues are known for their meticulous technique and quality excellence. Each pool cue is handcrafted using a 150-step process including hand-selecting the wood and using specialty made, moisture-controlled rooms in their factory. This process is used for seasoning the wood for 18-24 months. The 18-24 month seasoning includes rotating the cues 11 times to guarantee absolute straightness. In 2012 McDermott Cue Manufacturing, Inc. moved locations to a facility in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin. The new facility allows for a more streamlined process and consistent communication within all teams involved with selling, production, and customer service.
The first cues McDermott designed included their signature interchangeable weight bolt system. This system allows the player to self-adjust the feel of the pool cue to find the player’s perfect cue weight. This technology has advanced to the latest model which includes the Variable Balance Point (VBP) weight system; there is a full-length carbon fiber core on a rail inside the cue. This allows players to adjust the weights forward or backwards for the perfect weight AND balance that no other pool cue permits.
What About Quality?
McDermott has a commitment to quality that remains in place since its inception in 1975! Through the various upgrades and advancements in technology, quality remains to be the main focus. McDermott cues are known for quality construction, exotic woods, sophisticated inlays and limitless customization options. Some cues have protected exotic materials including mother of pearl and abalone which are not to be exported or transferred outside of the United States of America.
McDermott stands behind their products and offers a lifetime warranty for cues bought from an authorized dealer, for the original owner, for manufacturing defects including warpage (being bent or twisted out of shape, typically as a result of the effects of heat or humidity). Customers can call McDermott about their cue and speak to a live person; the McDermott team then uses the customer’s feedback to make improvements.
McDermott continues to offer repair and refinishing services for cues that have been retired. Players who continue to use the older classes of cue, from as far back as the D Series which was manufactured in 1984, can have their cue remain in top-quality performance order.
Most Popular Cues & Shafts
The following are some of the most popular McDermott pool cues and shafts.
|Most Popular Cues and Shafts||Description|
Price Range: $550 – $1,300
|The H-Series is the first line of cues ever to feature the fully-adjustable Variable Balance Point (VBP) weight system. This breakthrough is made possible by McDermott’s patented new technology that combines a full-length carbon fiber core with a rail on which the weights can be repositioned forward or backward inside the cue. No other cue allows you to have this much control over both the weight and balance.|
|Select Series |
Price Range: $450 – $700
|McDermott Select Series cues are equipped standard with i-Pro Slim or i-3 shafts for high performance at an affordable price|
Price Range: $280 – $2,000+
|McDermott G-Series cues are known for their quality construction, exotic woods, intricate inlays and limitless customization options|
|Intimidator i-Shafts |
Price Range: $840 – $2,000+
|These American-made cues come standard with the Intimidator i-Shaft (a $259 value). Each cue showcases McDermott’s passion for performance, craftsmanship, quality and innovation.|
|G-Core Shaft |
Price Range: $280 – $749
|These pool cues are made in the U.S.A. and come standard with McDermott’s top selling G-Core shaft. They feature intricate inlays and rings and are made from some of the most exotic woods and materials in the world. They are the best value pool cues available today.|
|Traditional All Maple Shaft |
Price Range: $230 – $255
|These American-made pool cues feature our traditional all-maple shaft. These cues have an all-maple butt that is enhanced with our premium stain and finishing process. Our G-Series All-Maple cues are arguably the best deals you’ll find for an American-made pool cue.|
In addition to McDermott’s most popular cues and shafts, they offer a few specialty cues. Each year McDermott produces a Cue of the Year. This limited edition cue (only 50 were made in 2019) raises the bar each year! It’s made of the rarest materials, exotic woods from around the world, and has numerous inlays. Instead of selling for several thousand dollars as the quality and uniqueness warrants, McDermott offers this specialty cue for a more reasonable price. The price tag for the Cue of the Year for 2019 was $2,299.00. The materials that were used to make it were natural Birdseye Maple, abalone, turquoise, pewter and black urethane, silver, and black embossed lizard leather.
McDermott also has a Cue of the Month program. This program gives customers the
opportunity to have a custom cue without the large price tag. McDermott takes a
cue from their collection, changes or upgrades some of the materials, colors,
shaft, and even artwork, and sells it without any customization charge.
Other Brands Made by McDermott
Over the last 40 years, McDermott Cue Manufacturing, Inc. has expanded into additional cue brands. Having additional brands allows there to be a wider range of options for players including a broader range of prices, colors, and designs. The Star and Lucky lines provide value for players that are on a budget and needing an entry-level cue. The cues are produced in-house, so the customer still receives the great McDermott standards. McDermott Cue Manufacturing, Inc includes the following brands:
- Star Pool Cues – Price Range: $115 – $209
Star cues feature premium maple and exotic materials mixed with intricate 4-color overlays. Manufactured globally using McDermott’s technology, Star cues provide the highest quality in their price range. Star cues are designed, engineered, and exclusively distributed by McDermott Cue. They are covered by a limited lifetime warranty.
- Lucky Cues – Price Range: $37.50 – $99
Lucky cues feature premium maple and intricate graphic overlays. This provides an exceptional value for one of the most solid-hitting, globally-manufactured cues in the industry. Lucky cues are designed, engineered, and exclusively distributed by McDermott Cue. They are covered by a three-year limited warranty.
- Stinger Break/Jump Cues – The Stinger technology takes the hit energy to the center of the shaft, regardless of where the tip is hit. The tip can be shaped flatter than a typical break cue’s tip. The flatter profile causes the Stinger tip to have a huge targeted spot. There can be a mishit and still get the intended results. Stinger break/jump cues feature a patented tenon tip/ferrule technology which transfers the energy from the jump or break to the ball for explosive results. The exclusive phenolic tip provides a larger target spot for results that sting the competition. Stinger cues may be custom ordered with a Billiard Congress of America (BCA) approved McDermott Big Boy hard leather tip.
- Sledgehammer Break Cue – Sledgehammer is one of the most recognized and respected names in devoted break cues. The patented ferrule technology found in the SH1 optimizes energy transfer, resulting in extreme power and accuracy. Known to many as the hardest and most solid hitting break cue on the market, the Sledgehammer simply obliterates a rack.
- Youth Cues – McDermott Youth Cues are high quality pool cues designed especially for children. They are perfect for kids who want proper equipment or pool table owners with small rooms or obstacles.
Pros Who Use McDermott
McDermott has 40 ambassadors or billiard professionals who use and promote McDermott products. These ambassadors span over nine countries and range in membership from 1982 to present. Of these 40 ambassadors, 99 championships of major tournaments have been won using McDermott pool cues.
- Tom Rossman
- William DeYonker
- Kamil Szaszor
- Robin Parker
- Jorge Rodriguez
- Gerson Martinez
- Ed Fee
- Okinawa Slim
- Daniel Maciol
- Anthony Beeler
- Kia Sidbury
- Brian Pauley
- Steve Lillis
- James Brennan
- Andrew Stock
- Charles Marshall Jr.
- Mohammad Ali Berjaoi
- Jim Barnard
- Timothy Bly
- Sam Ryne Henderson
- Eric Daelman
- Samet Degirmenci
- Joe Keith
- Cassie Francois
- Mark Hopgood
- Caroline Egan Jackson
- Riley Adkins
- Savanna Wolford
- Andre Smith
- Kelly Nelson
- Steve Mullins
- Lee Noble
- Justin Duplantis
- Jason Lawrence
- Bill Smith
- Juan Vega Enriquez
- Mazin Shooni
- Dave Dupuis
- Jacqueline Karo
- Artistotle Uda
While there are quite a few cue models under the McDermott brand, one of the most popular is the G-Series. The G-Series Cues have two different shaft options: The G-Core shaft and the i-Shaft. The i-Shaft models are going to be more expensive with prices ranging from $840-$2000+. However, on the lower end, the G-Core models are much more affordable, coming in at $240-$750.
One of the best G-Core models I have come across is the McDermott G214.
Some of its features are:
- Birdseye maple forearm
- Titanium grey stain
- Black urethane sleeve
- Silver and index rings
- 4 white pearl inlays
- Genuine Irish linen wrap
- 3/8″-10 joint
- G-Core shaft
This is a beautiful cue and it boasts all the same quality and attention to detail as all the other McDermott cues. This is a great option for any player looking for a high-quality cue at an affordable price. Last time I checked on Amazon, it was under $300. Click Here or on the pic above to see its current price.
As you can see there are lots of good reasons to consider buying a McDermott cue. Their commitment to quality and attention to detail is second to none. And while there are quite a few other great brands on the market today, McDermott has proven themselves to be among the best in the business.
I hope this article has helped you decide if McDermott cues are right for you. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out and check out our other helpful articles for all of your billiard related questions. Thanks for reading!