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Cue Collecting - Arthur Cue - Sapphire Lightning
 Posted on Friday, December 28 2007 @ 18:55:45 UTCby admin
Cue Corner Cue Corner

Presented by Simon "The Diamond" D'Vali
The UK's foremost authority on collectible cues


A cue collecting article about a beautiful cue!



Arthur Cue - Sapphire Lightning

Well, so much for me not buying cues anymore! This is a complete departure for me style wise but the workmanship was simply too good to avoid and I have been trying to avoid buying one of these cues for years because of the contemporary design. I like to collect classic 4 point cues with veneers made by past and current masters. This cue doesn’t look like a Balabushka or Szamboti so I wouldn’t normally consider a piece like this. I am no stranger to cues with precious metals and gem stones but I have never owned own with this level of detail. Intrigued? Read on...

"Read More..." for the details.





A few years ago at a pool hall in Cardiff (just around the corner from the Cardiff International Arena, where the World Pool Championships were being held), I met the German player (and Thorsten Hohmann's pool tutor) Ralph Eckert. Ralph was talking to some friends and had two cues in his hand. Both very unusual and heavily detailed, I couldn’t identify them at a distance so I closed in for a better look (I have a reputation for accosting famous players so I can check out their cues). We got talking and I explained I collected cues, Ralph immediately handed me his playing cue. The workmanship and attention to detail was staggering. Rings and inlays of solid gold and silver, the cue clearly cost a great deal. I, however, couldn’t identify the maker. What was this? Was I slipping? Has some great cue maker gone under my radar? How can this be???? Ralph explained it was called an Arthur Cue (Queue), made by a young German builder called Marcus Dienst. I had never come across him. He apparently had a large following in Germany but was relatively unheard of outside his country. Well, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing or hearing. The other cue was just as sharp, loaded out with precious metals too. Then there were the prices…..$8,000 and $12,000 U.S. I was so shocked, who was this guy that could charge Szamboti money for cues? I didn’t play with either cue but from an artistry point of view, these cues had it all.


Cut to a few years later and I met Ralph again in Germany for the European Club Championships. He had a new Arthur Cue with him. Again, this was loaded out with precious metals and is actually featured in his book entitled Modern Pool. I had to admit it was a beautiful affair but I still couldn’t understand how much money these cues were bringing. I mean, whilst they were very fancy, the money was comparable to Szamboti, Searing and Showman (You can’t go wrong with the Three S's, cue fans!). There was a lot of money in raw materials even before the cue was constructed which would go someway to understanding the price, along with the builders time and effort to create these works of art.

By this time, Marcus had started to garner some international recognition by a few very high profile cue collectors spending tens of thousands of dollars on his cues.


Cut to the present day and check out this new addition. I still can’t figure out if this cue has any place in my collection as it doesn’t go with anything. I don’t think I can even photograph it next to my other cues, it simply doesn’t fit in. As an execution of cue art, this cue is difficult to beat though. The cue is ebony and all the white is ivory. The points and inlays are bordered by solid sterling silver, along with silver nuggets inlaid with ivory and turquoise. The turquoise inlays within the ivory points are bordered by sterling silver. There are beautifully cut sapphires inlaid into the forearm in solid gold mounts surrounded by sterling silver accents. The ring-work consists of ivory rings with silver and turquoise scalloped diamonds bordered by sterling silver. The joint is solid piloted ivory. The ivory windows in the butt sleeve are accented with silver like a posh picture frame, it’s a classy touch. The turquoise inlays are once again bordered by silver along with silver scalloped diamonds inlaid adjacently. Both shafts are matching Predator 314s, with the same ring-work, so it isn’t a case of all show and no go, this cue was made to be used.


There is clearly a hand made feel about the cue and you can see that the silver shapes have been hand cut…to me that is quite refreshing rather than the micro-millimetre perfect inlays in some high end cues of this day and age (which have been milled by a machine). The cue is called ‘Sapphire Lightning’ and the name couldn’t be more appropriate. More bling than Liberace!

Marcus has clearly cut out a niche for himself with the artistry side of things, I wonder if it plays any good? I will report back soon. Check out the website, www.arthur-queue.de/ for more information.

Arthur Cues start at $350 and go up to about $60,000 (what I have seen) but I believe he is planning some ridiculous pieces that will top $100,000. Now what is it to be? A new M3 or a cue... Hmmmmm!







 

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