Recollection Cues

Collectible Cues, Cases & Quality Players


If you don't by now the name North Demon, you've been absent from the cue scene for a couple of years.  He has been designing and building some of the finest cues in the world, known for their elaborate and intricate designs, meticulous build and inlay, and excellent playability.  But even more important is the impact his work has had on the industry.  His work has raised the bar.  This cue, and others, show why.

Cheng at North Demon has been making several series of cues.  This is number seven of his Shengtang series.  I believe the series may be named after the ancient Chinese Tang dynasty, but I'm not sure exactly how.  Nonetheless, it's a very noble name for an extremely intricate and complexly designed series of cues.

This cue starts with a forearm of maple burl butt sleeve of ebony.  It has a white segmented handle built from the linen-based material, Juma.  And then the hard work begins ...

In the forearm, it has a heavily inlaid ebony sleeve just above the handle, with floating brass points above, outlined in Juma and more ebony.

One of the things I love about North Demon cues is the way the nose and butt sleeve is always so well integrated.  The design is always carried throughout the cue.  Too frequently I see cues from other cuemakers where the butt sleeve is very fancy, and the nose somewhat lacking. And they may or may not tie together.  You can see from this cue that the North Demon designs are well thought-through with lots of advance planning.

The picture above tells a thousand words.  The detail in these cues is unsurpassed, and the inlay work is as good as it gets.  It is meticulous work and virtually error-free.  In this one, he uses silver and brass for all the inlay work.  (Go to Cheng's Facebook page, North Demon Cues, for videos and details of just how meticulous his inlay process is.)

These floating brass points are very striking.  They are bold and beautiful.

And of course, the white Juma segmented handle is dazzling, adding to the overall opulence of this magnificant stick.

Cheng's designs are so appealing because of his natural artistic aptitude.  They aren't just a jumble of squiggles and curves - they are each a masterpiece of ornate inlay, forming an appealing picture using the cue as its canvas.

The ring pattern that he uses throughout this cue is original and exquisite.  It is bold and at the same time delicate.  It is a splendid design - very complex and ornate. (He builds and uses this ringset eight times in this stick.)

Another look at the dazzling points in this stick.

The design in the nose is well-integrated and very, very striking.

His work is so clean and meticulous that it's a pleasure to view it closely.  Even under a high-powered glass it is difficult to find fault anywhere.  Seams in his work are hard to find.

I would be remiss if I didn't point out the most important part of any cue - playability.  Cheng's cues always play well.  When I first started handling them, he sent me a test shaft so I could seel for myself.  I've hit a number of them now, and have not been disappointed with any.  They are solid and firm, and have good balance and a great "hit."   He spends lots of extra time on each shaft to make sure it meets his high standards, and sell many shafts each year to the best players in China.

It's also nice that he took the extra time and trouble to use this elaborate ringset on the ring collars of the shafts and on the butt joint protector.

Another good look at the detailed inlay work ...

He builds this one as he does all cues, with a steel radial pin in a flat-faced wood to wood joint.  It comes with two of his precision, high quality maple shafts with matching rings, Juma ferrules and his own proprietary "green" layered medium hardness tips.  Each has his unique taper to minimize deflection, and is about 13mm.  It weighs either 19.4 or 19.6 ounces, depending on which shaft is used (16.0, 3.4 and 3.6).

It is built with a female thread in the butt to accommodate many of the generic extensions (Predator, etc.).