TIM SCRUGGS CUSTOM CUES, INC.
Maker of pool cues from 1978 to present in Baltimore, Maryland.
Tim Scruggs became a master machinist at a young age while working at Davis and Hemphill for three years in the early 1960s. His true love was pool, and he resigned from the machinist job to run one of the pool halls in Baltimore. Dan Janes was running another pool hall in town at that time, and the two were in constant communication about the road players coming through town. One of these players was Bill Stroud, and in a few years, Dan and Bill were making Joss cues in Baltimore.
As a pool player and friend of Bill and Dan, Tim was one of the first to buy a Joss cue. When he visited the Joss shop, he ended up showing them how to sharpen drill bits. It was immediately apparent to Bill and Dan that Tim knew his way around a machine shop, so they offered him a full-time job with Joss. Tim worked for them for three months in 1970, then returned to the pool hall where he had been working.
For the next couple of years, Tim began to grow tired of running the pool hall, realizing that cuemaking could offer him a brighter long-term future. When Bill Stroud left Joss in 1972, Dan called Tim to see if he would come back. Tim accepted the offer, and told himself that this was what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. This time at Joss, Tim worked much harder, learning every aspect of cuemaking. For the next six years, Dan and Tim made Joss cues together.
In 1978, Tim decided to start making cues of his own. He went to visit with another young cuemaker, and friend, for many years. After this visit, Tim returned to Baltimore to set up shop. Bob Fry, a friend of Tim´s since the sixth grade, offered to help Tim to start making cues. That same year, Tim Scruggs Custom Cues was founded in an old meat storage building on the outer edge of Baltimore.
Early Tim Scruggs cues were similar to the cues he was making at Joss, but they were unmarked. Soon his cues developed their own unique style, and began a series of ongoing improvements. By the early 1980s, an intertwined "TS" was being stamped on the Delrin butt caps. All of Tim´s cues had ivory ferrules until 1985, when he started experimenting with other materials, eventually settling on melamine, with ivory being an option until 1997, when it became standard again. Linen-based ferrules are available for those who prefer them. In 1988, Tim stopped stamping his logo on cues, and started engraving it with a pantograph. This resulted in a much clearer, more uniform logo. Some of these cues will also have a date below the logo. In 1990, Tim switched from using a lacquer finish to a much better looking polyurethane. Delrin was used for standard butt caps until 1995, when it was replaced with Ivorine 3. In 1996, Tim started adding the last two digits of the year of completion around his identification marks.
Tim Scruggs Custom Cues makes a few cues a month, in the modern two-man shop he moved into in 1996. He moved from the original location that was founded in 1978. Tim makes everything except the tips, screws, and bumpers in house, with the help of Mike Cochran, who has worked for Tim for over twenty years. Mike is starting to make his own cues, which he signs, and may take over the business when Tim retires.
Tim tries to balance a cue before it is assembled so that weight does not have to be added at completion. He does a lot of ivory inlay work, and any kind of joint is available. The steel joint with radial pin Tim uses has become very popular because of its increased contact and more forward balance. Lately Tim has been specializing in building one-of-a-kind cues of his own design costing over $2,500 and offering them for sale on his website. He also likes to make custom cues for players, and what´s even better is that they like using them.
If you have a Tim Scruggs cue that needs further identification or repair, or would like to talk to Tim about ordering a new cue, contact Tim Scruggs Custom Cues, listed in the Trademark Index.
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