For pool players, we live in a day and age where there’s a plethora of varying products for the billiards enthusiast to choose from. We have low deflection shafts, phenolic tips, jump cues, break cues, cue extensions, billiards gloves, layered tips, etc. With all the gear to select from, it can be hard to determine what’s the best choice for the individual. In most cases (pun intended), players are proud to show you what’s in their cases.
Many players I’ve seen have expensive cues in beat up, tattered cases. What about the case itself? You know, that thing everyone sees when you first walk into any pool hall.
John Barton, or JB for short, has played pool ever since he was 12, growing up in Oklahoma City. At 16 he was hooked. His business is JB Custom Cases. He is pool personified.
Barton has lived in Oklahoma City for the last 3 years; he moved there from China, where he lived for several years. He is one of the top 50 players in Oklahoma he tells me, as I get a little into his background in pool, and also he’s rated 612 on the Fargo system used to rate pros, which John tells me Shane Van Boening is an 820.
Also, John likes one pocket, what many call the chess of pocket billiards, and I’ve seen him play some one pocket matches he’s streamed live on Facebook, and he plays very well from what I’ve seen. Of one pocket, JB says, “It’s really frustrating for me, it’s so deep, but I really like it because there’s so many opportunities to be creative, and to do things that you’ve never really done before on the pool table in any other game…You can combine every game into it. You can combine your caroms, your kicks, your banks…you’ve got to be able to come up with things you’ve never even seen anybody do before.”
What’s in John’s personal JB 3×6 case? He’s got a Jerry Olivier, and a couple of Andy Gilbert’s — custom cues no doubt. Also, he has custom made cue extensions. I think JB loves custom made. Also, he has a “Hammer Head” jump tip for his Glibert jump/break cue. And he crams all that gear in a 3×6! That case is at maximum capacity.
JB Cases are warrantied for life. If you ever have a problem with your case, you are covered.
I wanted to see what it’s like to get a JB Custom case, so I went on line to John’s website at https://jbcases.com and proceeded to design my own case, a 4×8 case with backpack straps. Easy to design, and fun to set up your case in a way you like. You pick the material, you can upload custom art or your own logo. You can have your name in bold letters on your case. You can have all leather, a 1×2, a 2×4, 3×6, 4×8, and bigger. It’s your life, whatever you want, however you want it — that’s how they build it at JB Custom Cases.
Custom Cases come shipped in 4-6 weeks depending on the case. Also, they have many prefabricated cases to choose from.
In 2006 John converted his living room in China into a cue case manufacturing hub. He hired his mo