What’s the easiest way to ensure the cue tip is aligned with the center of the cue ball?
First, it is very important that your vision center is aligned with the cue so the tip will look centered when it is centered. It also helps to position the cue tip as close as possible to the CB in your “set” position to minimize any perspective perception problems resulting from not being aligned with your vision center. It also helps to deliberately focus on where the cue tip is relative to the CB center for a deliberate amount of time during the “set” position, with quiet eyes. It can also help some people to key off the resting point of the CB on the cloth. This can help you more accurately visualize the vertical centerline of the CB.
The drills suggested and demonstrated on the MOFUDAT page can also be very useful to diagnose and help correct alignment and stroke flaws. Joe Tucker’s Third Eye Stroke Trainer can also be helpful to some people.
I have noticed that many players begin the table aim (when they are down on the CB) by placing the tip of the cue on the table. Many players from different countries use this method as part of the aiming process and it seems there may be a reason for it. Perhaps it does help with aiming.
Apparently, when you place the stick on the table oriented through the center of the CB to the contact point, the tip is something like a pointer and you can evaluate the relative distances to either side of the CB from the center of the tip. It is easier to find center and then move relative to this place.
There is a second advantage to this method and this involves the perception of center as seen through the CB to the contact point. With the stick out of the way [there is] an unobstructed view.
There [also] appears to be a third advantage. When the stick is initially placed on the table and the center line is sought, there is a definite tendency to place the stick on this line. The use of FHE and BHE is now relative to this line of travel for the CB to OB and it is easier to determine what needs to be done relative to a line that can be visualized as opposed to an estimated line.