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Billiards Digest December, 2008 David Alciatore, PhD ("Dr. Dave") ILLUSTRATED PRINCIPLES

Summary: Billiards Digest December, 2008
David Alciatore, PhD ("Dr. Dave") ILLUSTRATED PRINCIPLES
"Fundamentals - Part IV: Bridge Length"
Note: Supporting narrated video (NV) demonstrations, high-speed video (HSV) clips, and
technical proofs (TP), and all of my past articles, can be accessed and viewed online at
billiards.colostate.edu. The reference numbers used in the article help you locate the
resources on the website. If you have a slow or inconvenient Internet connection, you
might want to view the resources from a CD-ROM or DVD. See the website for details.
This is the fourth article in a series on fundamentals. In the last three months, I've covered
the stroke, the basics of aiming, and issues involved with cut-shot aiming systems. This month,
we will look at the bridge length and its effects. Diagram 1 illustrates terminology related to the
bridge and cue position. The bridge length is the distance from the bridge pivot to the front edge
of the cue ball (CB). The tip gap is the distance between the tip and the CB at the "set" aiming
position (i.e., your cue and body position before the final stroke). In general, you want the tip gap
to be as small as possible when you are finalizing your aim. A smaller gap will help you better
visualize where the tip contact point will be relative to the center of the CB. With a larger gap,
parallax caused by our stereoscopic vision (i.e., the different views created by each eye) can
more easily give a false perception of the exact tip placement. Also, with a smaller gap, your
forearm will remain close to perpendicular to the cue both during the "set" position and at impact
with the cue, helping to ensure an accurate vertical tip position on the CB (with a non-elbow-drop


Source: Alciatore, David G. - Department of Mechanical Engineering, Colorado State University


Collections: Engineering