How has the Brunswick-Balke-Collender- splice changed over the years? - You be the judge: the following image shows 7 Brunswick 4-veneer cues (bottom to top): 1) 1920's 1-piece, 2) 1930's 2-piece wrapped, 3) 1930's 2-piece (wrap removed), 4) 1941-45 Titlist, 5) 1950's Hoppe Professional, 6) conversion of 1960's Hoppe Professional, 7) c-1970 "Signature).
The word "Titlist" is simply a name Brunswick selected to give their 4-veneered 1-piece cue in 1941. Prior to that, it was known as model # 26 1/2, then briefly as the "Carom King", and finally, as the "Signature" model in the early 1970's. All of these cues have the same veneer color sequence of maple, brown, green then purple. The only exception was the "Ralph Greenleaf" model in the 1930's.
Based on examples I have seen (please send your own data so I can correct if needed), the veneers were thinner and the colors more subdued in the 1920's. Veneer length was also more consistently even and the splice more pointed at the bottom. The veneers of the 1960's were the widest and had the brightest colors - many collectors prefer these for conversions. The only 1970's example I have has the aged yellow lacquer finish that makes it difficult to accurately judge the veneer colors.
The 1920's cues had the weight between the points. During the late '20s or 30's the weight was stamped on the butt. In addition, the 4 examples I have of c-1930's cues have longer splices than cues before or after. When the Titlist and Professional were introduced in 1941, the weight stamps were moved back to the forearm, though forearm location is unpredictable. The "Willie Hoppe" signature was stamped on the forearm, and was only changed once, in the late '40s, to a slightly different signature.
Brunswick Balke-Collender Veneered Cues: Changes from 1920's - 1970's