What is chalk, why is it used, and how is it made?

A good explanation can be found on the billiard chalk Wikipedia page. Chalk is used to provide friction between the cue tip and cue ball during contact, to prevent a miscue.

Here’s a magnified image of pool chalk from Chris Renfro:

magnified billiard chalk

Billiards “chalk” should not be confused with naturally occurring “chalk” (sea-formed calcium carbonate sedimentary rock) which has a very organic appearance under a microscope:

naturally occurring chalk under a microscope

Dr. Dave keeps this site commercial free, with no ads. If you appreciate the free resources, please consider making a one-time or monthly donation to show your support: