Tell us what you think!

This survey will take only a few moments and is important for us!

So, please do it!

Head Prestige Tour 2023

This racquet, the Head Prestige Tour 2023, is the epitome of performance racquets!

The first clue is the 95-inch head size.  Then comes the thin beam and slightly stiffer flex!  Plus, you know it is a Prestige because of the full cap grommet system!  This system is one of the greatest features of all time on any racquet!  

We will talk about this more on another Head Prestige 2023 racquet. 

You will see all of the specifications in the table that follows. ¬†Now, we can talk about the visuals. ¬†As with the entire Prestige 2023 series, there is a combination of matt and shiny finishes, and the shiny “purple” is great and does not seem out of place on this racquet.

The beam geometry is slightly different than the Head Prestige Pro to add a little stiffness to the shaft.

 

ManufacturerHead
Racquet Model Head Prestige Tour 2023 16x19 Retail
Reference Tension54
String
7710 Spool 5
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC50
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour63.3
String Bed Stiffness - SBS44
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC64
Racquet Flex, FlexFour31
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness376.3
Weight, Grams335
Weight, Ounces11.82
Balance, mm329.0
Balance, Inch12.95
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.360
Head Length12.77
Head Area, cm2608.87
Head Area, Sq. Inch94.4
Beam Height @ Grip, mm21
Beam Height @ Mid, mm22
Beam Height @ Tip22
Beam Width @ Grip, mm13.1
Beam Width @ Throat, mm13
Beam Width @ Mid, mm12
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.2
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio.619
Main String Grid7.20
Cross String Grid9.06
Density (% of head filled with string)72.6%
Average Cross String Space.493
Average Main String Space.457
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76
First Moment, Nm.851
Polar Moment346
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2330
Swing Weight, Ounces11.64
Swing Weight Calculated362.6
Power, RDC54
Control, RDC47
Manueverability, RDC67
Power, Calculated 2012.8
Head Points4.412
Head Weight, %48.0%
Center of Percussion20.9
Dwell Time, ms6.62
Efective Stiffness - lbs28.1
K, Lb/In160.26
Recoil Weight165.7
Twist Weight222.53
End Weight 132.0
Tip Weight 202.0
9 O'Clock101.5
3 O'Clock102.4
Butt Cap129.5
.376.383
COF, Cross.306

 

Wilson H-22

We have a few Wilson H-22 at the World Headquarters!

These are custom racquets, so any resemblance to retail racquets is cosmetic!  These racquets are cut to a length of 27 inches (68.6mm) and have no grip, and the butt cap is not stapled to the pallet!  This means it is ready for a Wilson Leather grip (or standard synthetic) and some minor length adjustment if necessary.

Wilson H-22

There is a well-deserved mysticism around this iconic racquet model!  This racquet has been in the hands of many top professionals over the years and probably many right now!  The relatively thin beam and box cross-section create a predictable and consistent racquet.

These racquets are customizable to achieve the perfect hitting experience for the player seeking a “companion” ¬†not just a racquet!

We don’t have many of these remaining so if you have a special player on your holiday list contact us if you want to discuss the options!

 

 

Lets compare the Head Prestige Pro 16×19 v Head Prestige Pro 18×20

The following graphic will show clearly why the pro stock (SMU) racquets are very important in our quest to enhance the performance of all players!

Compare Prestige Pro

A primary reason we work with custom racquets is the length of the racquet as we receive it, which allows us to create up to 28 inches (71cm) long.  We can extend racquets however reducing the length is the preferred option. 

Of course, we can customize the SMU to match the specifications of the retail (27-inch) racquet but with a 16×19 string pattern.¬†

If you look closely you will recognize the tremendous possibilities beginning with a lighter, more flexible racquet for players of all physical abilities!

The supply of the 16×19 racquets is limited, however, demos are available for both.

Head Prestige Pro 18×20 2023 Retail

This Head Prestige Pro 18×23 Retail version offers a high performance racquet ready for serious play! ¬†However, we offer the custom version for players who prefer a slightly more open string pattern and some customization.

As you will see on the specifications, this racquet is serious, but most players can use this racquet if they get over the idea that these are stiff racquets!

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Prestige Pro 2023 18x20 Retail
Reference Tension52
String
MonoGut ZX Pro (PEEK)
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC54
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour56.4
String Bed Stiffness - SBS44
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC58
Racquet Flex, FlexFour44
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness342.9
Weight, Grams340
Weight, Ounces11.99
Balance, mm3234
Balance, Inch12.72
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.476
Head Length13.052
Head Area, cm2626.7
Head Area, Sq. Inch97.1
Beam Height @ Grip, mm20.8
Beam Height @ Mid, mm20.0
Beam Height @ Tip20.0
Beam Width @ Grip, mm10.7
Beam Width @ Throat, mm10.8
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.5
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.2
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio.655
Main String Grid7.56
Cross String Grid10.25
Density (% of head filled with string)71.4%
Average Cross String Space.513
Average Main String Space,453
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76
First Moment, Nm.844
Polar Moment335
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2319
Swing Weight, Ounces11.25
Swing Weight Calculated354.7
Power, RDC44
Control, RDC57
Manueverability, RDC74
Power, Calculated 1811.3
Head Points6.3
Head Weight, %47.1%
Center of Percussion20.5
Dwell Time, ms6.125
Efective Stiffness - lbs28.0
K, Lb/In173.08
Recoil Weight152.3
Twist Weight229.34
End Weight 139.8
Tip Weight 198.9
9 O'Clock100
3 O'Clock101.7
Butt Cap137.4
COF, Main.383
COF, Cross.204

 

 

Head Prestige Pro 2023 16×19 SMU

I told you something special is coming soon! Soon is here now! And it is special!

Head Prestige Pro 16×19 2023 SMU


We have a limited number of Head Prestige Pro 2023 with a custom 16×19 string pattern instead of the standard 18×20 (we have those as well). These are full custom racquets, meaning they need some customization, and are usually referred to as “Pro Stock” racquets.

These racquets have a different finish than the retail version, primarily shiny instead of a matt finish anywhere.

We receive these in “raw” form, meaning they are not cut or have any post-manufacturing additives, i.e., swing weight and overall weight.

This means we can make a “full custom” version of the retail model up to 27.8 inches long (70.6 mm) except with a more open 16×19 string pattern!

We will add a comparative table for the Pro 16×19 and Retail 18×20.

However, to get things started, we will post the specifications of each racquet “as is.”

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Prestige Pro 2023 16x20 SMU
Reference Tension52
String
MonoGut ZX Pro (PEEK)
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC49.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour59.5 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS43.0 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35
Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC57 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour43.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness346.1 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams296
Weight, Ounces10.44
Balance, mm331
Balance, Inch13.03
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.476
Head Length13.052
Head Area, cm2626.7
Head Area, Sq. Inch97.1
Beam Height @ Grip, mm20.0
Beam Height @ Mid, mm20.0
Beam Height @ Tip20.0
Beam Width @ Grip, mm10.7
Beam Width @ Throat, mm10.8
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.5
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.2
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.611
Main String Grid7.25
Cross String Grid10.0
Density (% of head filled with string)74.6%
Average Cross String Space.526
Average Main String Space,453
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76
First Moment, Nm.758
Polar Moment299.0
Torsional Stability14
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2285.0
Swing Weight, Ounces10.05
Swing Weight Calculated324.3
Power, RDC37
Control, RDC64
Manueverability, RDC97
Power, Calculated 1593.8
Head Points3.78
Head Weight, %48,3%
Center of Percussion20.3
Dwell Time, ms6.048
Efective Stiffness - lbs26.3
K, Lb/In157.05
Recoil Weight129.23
Twist Weight199.70
End Weight 117.0
Tip Weight 179.2
9 O'Clock89.5
3 O'Clock90.0
Butt Cap116.6
COF, Main.412
COF, Cross.331

Now for some GOOD news!

It seems that I am recovering from this cold or whatever it is, so now we can return to a relatively normal schedule!

Happy!
Am I very happy? Yes!

I want to start with some comments from Willie B. regarding string. ¬†After you read Willie’s comments, we can talk about the string and why it does what it does: to allow players of any level to play without discomfort.

Here is from Willie:

“FYI, my inability to play tennis more than 1-twice a week due to the pain for over 4 years impacted my game. The last time I was ranked was 5.0, but now at 47, probably more like 4.5 (No tournament for the previous 5 years)
The good news is that with the feel of those strings, I can hit back (I practiced with a top player last Sunday, and he even felt it as I am not scared to go big‚Ķ I have played with him for over a decade)”.

Willie’s racquet technician is Henry Hamels of String MD. ¬†Thank you, Henry, for sharing!

If you have not already guessed, the string material is PEEK, polyetheretherketone, which was marketed as Zyex by Ashaway under the MonoGut ZX and ZX Pro models!  This monofilament format offers an alternative to stiffer monofilament strings while providing, in most cases, better performance and durability!

So, why isn’t every person on earth using PEEK?
  • The raw material is expensive.
  • Some racquet technicians stringers simply don’t know how to handle PEEK.
    • The high elongation of PEEK is a surprise to the first-time stringer.
  • Marketing hype is not strong.
  • Very few players and stringers know about this alternative.
    • See Marketing Hype above!
    • Stringers may have had a poor experience before and are wary.
  • The material does not change shape; therefore, knots are not as tiny as some stringers prefer.
    • PEEK will “tighten” its own knots.
    • Beginning stringers may over-tighten the knot, causing failure…never to be used again!
  • Currently, the material is available in two (2) colors, tan and black.
    • MonoGut ZX is 16 gauge
    • MonoGut ZX Pro is 17 gauge

Depending on the player’s tennis intentions, we may start them on PEEK at age nine (9) but no later than twelve (12).

Thank you, Willie, for your comments!

To see if this material will benefit your game now and for the long term, ask your racquet technician.  

  • Please text us if you need additional information: ¬†407.491.4755
  • Comment on this site, and we will respond to specific questions.
  • If, based on our player history, your application may not be the best, we will tell you.
    • Very beginning players and those players experimenting with various strokes creating mis-hits need to be recognized.

 

Visitors to the World Headquarters

Racquet Quest, LLC World Headquarters was a very busy place recently! ¬†It is always busy doing racquet work but this “busyness” was to share some time with visitors from around the world!

Albert Murata, from Hawaii, ¬†and his wife Heather were in town to play the 55’s at the USTA Campus, happily, they took the time to come by and chat about stinging stuff. ¬†You can reach Albert here.

AM Stringing

Also here was Randy St Pierre from the UK.  Randy stops by about twice a year and we always have vibrant discussions.

Coming from Lyon, France was Eric Ferrazzi, Carine, and Camille!  This is our French Family and it is always wonderful to have them here with us!

Eric Ferrazzi, Lyon, France

Since all of us are in the tennis business we have a lot to talk about.

 

 

It seems our discussions normally start with strings!  Imagine that!  Why do we talk about string, because it breaks and we replace it.  Why does it break?  There are several reasons but for right now we are focused on the grommet set in the racquet.  Some grommets around the top of the racquet have very shallow grooves and the string can be exposed to court and fail.  Not after one altercation with the court but over time for sure!

 

 

Racquet Characteristics are always popular to discuss with stiffness being one of the top subjects.  You can see some racquet stiffnesses here.

 

 

Nothing is off limits so we always have a good time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome!
We welcome you to stop by, wherever you are from!

Head Prestige 2023

The Head Prestige 2023 series is here!

This is the current line-up:

ModelHead SizeString PatternUnstrung WeightUnstrung Swing WeightRDC Stiffness
Head Prestige Pro 20239818x2031828461
Head Prestige Tour 20239516x1931329566
Head Prestige MP L 20239916x1930328564

There is much to be said about these new Prestige 2023 models and the first thing that needs to be clear is that these are not “stiff” racquets. ¬†Of course, a Prestige Mid 93 strung with poly at 55 pounds will be ultra stiff on impact! ¬† I think that is not the fault of the racquet!

You can approximate the strung weight by adding 17-20 grams to the weight and adding about 30 units to the swing weight.

Racquet stiffness can be mitigated by adjusting the Effective stiffness for the player.

Below are some comparative stiffness
Racquet ModelHead SizeRDC Stiffness
Yonex V-Core 989866
Yonex Percept 10010068
Wilson Shift 99L9971
Wilson Pro Staff 97 v149768
Wilson Pro Staff 97L 9770
Wilson H229765
Head Boom Pro 9869
Head Extreme MP10070
Babolat Pure Drive10071
Babolat Pure Aero10067

The big surprise is right here! This is really exciting![/tds_in

 

 

 

 

 

Wilson Shift 99L Yes it is HERE!

This could be the Shift you are waiting for!

The Wilson Shift 99 L

The same new technology in a slightly lighter package!

We will post all the specifications soon but we wanted to let you know they are here!

I believe this will be a great platform for future growth!  The swing weight is a little low. However, that can be changed as necessary to achieve the growth in performance.  The stiffness of this racquet does lend to the power shown in the specifications, but the lateral bending will benefit those looking for comfort.

A great way to tell if this is a racquet for you is to try it!
ManufacturerWilson
Racquet ModelWilson Shift 99L
Reference Tension55
String
MonoGut ZX Pro
Machine UsedTrue Tension Pro
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC52.0
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour60.0
String Bed Stiffness - SBS46.0
String Bed Stiffness - ERT36 kg/cm
Racquet Flex, RDC68 After Stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour46.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness403.2 Lbs/In
Weight, Grams312
Weight, Ounces11.01
Balance, mm323
Balance, Inch12.72
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.82
Head Length12.74
Head Area, cm2633.6
Head Area, Sq. Inch98.2
Beam Height @ Grip, mm23.0
Beam Height @ Mid, mm24.0
Beam Height @ Tip24.0
Beam Width @ Grip, mm12.3
Beam Width @ Throat, mm13.3
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.0
Beam Width @ Tip, mm13.0(including bumper)
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.617
Main String Grid7.25
Cross String Grid10.87
Density (% of head filled with string)71.6%
Average Cross String Space.494
Average Main String Space.445
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT MasterTensometer36 kg/cm
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in201.35
First Moment, Nm.774
Polar Moment311
Torsional Stability14
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2297
Swing Weight, Ounces10.48
Swing Weight Calculated325.5 (full-length)
Power, RDC51.0
Control, RDC50.0
Manueverability, RDC74.0
Power, Calculated 2003.2
Head Points6.30
Head Weight, %47.1%
Center of Percussion20.7
Dwell Time, ms6.03
Dwell Time, Spin, ms8.82
Effective Stiffness29.5
K, Lb/In166.67
Recoil Weight144.06
Twist Weight224.76
End Weight 128.1
Tip Weight 182.9
9 O'Clock94.7
3 O'Clock94.3
Butt Cap123.5
COF, Main.315
COF, Cross.346

Wilson SHIFT 99 PRO – Jason’s Racquet Review

HIGHLIGHTS:

Fun racquet to try! Very different in both looks and feel, from the usual Wilson offerings. More suited to the advanced player, and aggressive baseliners who play with fast swing speeds, and a lot of spin.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS:

The most noticeable impression, on first pick up, of the PRO version, was the slightly thicker beam, and overall heft of the racquet. At 327g swing weight, this racquet is definitely in the heavyweight category, but it had a good feel in the hand, and generally good maneuverability, both at the baseline and at the net. As for looks, the contemporary aesthetics are very different from the usual Wilson look, and the string bed looks noticeably tighter than I’m used to.

CONTROL:

The sweet spot on this racquet feels small, suiting it to a more advanced player. Faster swing speeds seemed to produce more control, but with the smaller sweet spot, and low dwell time, I experienced some balls flying when I didn’t expect them to. The tight string bed does produce a lower trajectory, but I didn’t find that this prevented those occasional wayward balls. At the net, the racquet had a damper feel than I’m used to, and again, I felt I was in control as long as I hit the sweet spot.

SPIN:

I was looking forward to testing this racquet because of the new increased horizontal bending in the head of the racquet, which should generate more spin. Hitting my regular strokes, I didn’t notice any extra spin being produced naturally. However, when I really tried to increase the swing speed, and increase the spin myself, the racquet responded well and would allow for great spin creation.

POWER:

The thick beam gave the racquet a very solid and stable feel, and with the weight of the racquet, it was very powerful coming off the sweet spot. Great on days you’re playing well, but if you miss the sweet spot the racquet had a dull, non-responsive feel. Solid on returns and good momentum, but the flatter hitter may struggle for control.

OVERALL:

This is a very different racquet that takes a while to get used to. It would be well suited to an advanced player, who swings fast, and already plays with a lot of spin. Don’t expect this racquet to transform flat strokes into heavy topspin. I tested at 55 lbs but would string a little tighter than this if using it again.

Now you have Jason’s perspective! Click here to look at the “numerical” review of this racquet and see how the two reviews stack up!

I did also test the non-pro version of the Shift. With the more open string bed and lighter weight, I experienced even more balls flying long than with the pro version. It was definitely more forgiving on the arm, and easier to maneuver, but the trade-off was less control. Would be well suited to a more intermediate player. I feel an advanced player would have to add some extra weight, and string tighter.

Click here to see Jason’s tennis biography. Please contact Jason if you have questions or anything to contribute to the review!

Are you ready for a peek at the NOIR SIDE?

 Are you ready for the Dark Side?

Do you dare?  Of course you do!

Of course you’re ready! ¬†You have been hitting with the Wilson Blade for a while but always wanted a Noir racquet!

But why?

These Noir Series racquets represent the pinnacle of style!

When combined with the performance of the Blade and Pro Staff models the Noir aesthetic projects your determination to anyone standing in your way of success on the court!

 

 

These racquets are duplicates of the current “rust” Pro Staff and the “green” Blade so you are assured of the performance and feel of the Blade or Pro Staff you are currently using which means all you need to do is buy one…then visit the Dark Side. ¬†We have a few remaining!

Compare Wilson Shift 99/300 to Shift 99/315

Comparisons are fun and can be informative as one of the steps in selecting a tennis racquet that is right for you!

If you have read the individual reviews of these two (2) racquets you may wonder about some of the numbers.

This comparison table makes it easy to see the properties.

  • You will notice very little difference in these racquets’ overall weight and swing weight. Typically tolerances will be in the plus/minus 7-gram range.
    What does that mean?
    For example:
    • A 300-gram racquet can weigh from 293 to 307 grams.
    • A 315-gram racquet can weigh from 308 to 322 grams.
      • Different model racquets can be the same weight.¬†
      • Same-model racquets can be an ounce different in weight.

This much variation is very rare!

So, when multiple racquets are received at the World Headquarters they are characterized to match similar racquets within a model.

Wilson Shift 99/315 Pro

The Wilson Shift has introduced a new movement in racquet design, and the Shift 99/315 Pro rounds out the two (2) racquet series for now!

If you read the review of the 99/300 Shift, you have a good idea about the concept: on the impact, the ball moves the head down, and before the ball can leave the strings, the head moves up! 

It is like you are swinging from low to high! It sounds simple, but there is more to it than that.

Look at the numbers below then we will have a comparison of the two (2) versions! Click here to get a refresher course on what the numbers mean

 

ManufacturerWilson
Racquet ModelWilson Shift 99/315 Pro
Reference Tension50
String
Babolat Xalt 130
Machine UsedBabolat Racquet Station
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC60.0
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour64.6
String Bed Stiffness - SBS45.0
String Bed Stiffness - ERT38 kg/cm
Racquet Flex, RDC70 After Stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour45.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness383.6 Lbs/In
Weight, Grams338
Weight, Ounces11.92
Balance, mm321
Balance, Inch12.64
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.79
Head Length12.74
Head Area, cm2632.1
Head Area, Sq. Inch98.0
Beam Height @ Grip, mm23.0
Beam Height @ Mid, mm24.0
Beam Height @ Tip24.0
Beam Width @ Grip, mm12.75
Beam Width @ Throat, mm12.8
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.1
Beam Width @ Tip, mm13.0(including bumper)
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.692
Main String Grid7.13
Cross String Grid10.44
Density (% of head filled with string)76.0 %
Average Cross String Space.522
Average Main String Space.396
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT MasterTensometer38 kg/cm
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in212.54
First Moment, Nm.832
Polar Moment341.0
Torsional Stability17
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2324
Swing Weight, Ounces11.43
Swing Weight Calculated346.3 (full-length)
Power, RDC49.0
Control, RDC51.0
Manueverability, RDC74.0
Power, Calculated 2244.1
Head Points6.93
Head Weight, %46.8%
Center of Percussion21.0
Dwell Time, ms5.94
Dwell Time, Spin, ms8.21
Efective Stiffness - lbs32.3
K, Lb/In192.31
Recoil Weight161.30
Twist Weight242.30
End Weight 135.9
Tip Weight 193.8
9 O'Clock98.2
3 O'Clock99.0
Butt Cap130.4
COF, Main.396
COF, Cross.319

 

A Players Perspective

We are really happy to have Jason Harne join us to review and add his comments on tennis racquets and tennis strings!

I think you will agree that Jason will be a great addition to racquetquest.com based on the following tennis bio:

Jason Harne – Tennis

  • Pro tennis ‚Äď futures tournaments and satellites
  • Stirling University, Scotland. One of the first players to be awarded the British Universities Tennis Bursary Colors Award (equivalent to All-American)
  • International home nations tournament, representing Scotland, player of the tournament award.
  • England county cup, division one, representing Yorkshire County.
  • Spain and UK, national league tennis
  • High Point University, Big South Conference, 22-2 record.
  • U21 guardian direct British futures, national champion, and fastest UK serve.
  • Teaching pro, UK and Spain, high-performance players

This is very impressive but the most important component for us, and you, is Jason’s incredible interest in new things!¬† Jason is willing to try, and honestly comment on, any performance tennis equipment.

Jason will be commenting on the new Wilson Shift series later this week.

Please leave a comment or question for Jason.

 

Wilson Shift 99/300

After the success of the Wilson Labs version of the Shift technology, Wilson decided to make a retail version. We have received the retail version of the unique racquets and certainly want to share!

Just looking at the racquet, you may ask, “What is unique about it?” Even though the term AI is overused, in this case, it was just used! Some of the concepts of the designers were fed to AI, and it went to work!

Wilson Shift 300

We don’t know the details of the AI prompts, but we do know the very wide throat will accommodate the in-plane flexure of the shaft, which lets the head move downward upon impact and then move back while the ball is in contact with the string, therefore, contributing to “spin.”

This 99-square-inch racquet comes in two (2) versions, the 300-gram and 315-gram “Pro,” with an 18×20 string pattern.

We can feel some flex in the shaft; however, the real test is hitting with this concept, so come in and try the demo.  In the meantime, take a look at the numbers.

After the numbers, be sure to watch the Wilson video of the Shift 99/300!
ManufacturerWilson
Racquet ModelWilson Shift 300
Reference Tension58
String
PEEK 7710
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC53.0
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour63.5
String Bed Stiffness - SBS43.0
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 kg/cm
Racquet Flex, RDC69 After Stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour43.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness400.0 Lbs/In
Weight, Grams330
Weight, Ounces11.64
Balance, mm325
Balance, Inch12.80
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.82
Head Length12.75
Head Area, cm2634.0
Head Area, Sq. Inch98.3
Beam Height @ Grip, mm23.0
Beam Height @ Mid, mm24.0
Beam Height @ Tip24.0
Beam Width @ Grip, mm12.75
Beam Width @ Throat, mm12.8
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.1(PWS)
Beam Width @ Tip, mm13.0(including bumper)
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.616
Main String Grid7.25
Cross String Grid10.81
Density (% of head filled with string)71.7 %
Average Cross String Space.494
Average Main String Space.446
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT MasterTensometer35 kg/cm
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.78
First Moment, Nm.826
Polar Moment337.0
Torsional Stability17
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2320
Swing Weight, Ounces11.29
Swing Weight Calculated348.6 (full-length)
Power, RDC54.0
Control, RDC48.0
Manueverability, RDC73.9
Power, Calculated 2191.7
Head Points5.67
Head Weight, %47.4%
Center of Percussion20.9
Dwell Time, ms8.74
Efective Stiffness - lbs30.0
K, Lb/In159.87
Recoil Weight155.31
Twist Weight237.78
End Weight 133.1
Tip Weight 194.6
9 O'Clock98.4
3 O'Clock100.6
Butt Cap129.0
COF, Main.396
COF, Cross.319

Stop by the World Headquarters of Racquet Quest, LLC,  pick up a demo, and experience this for yourself!

 

 

 

An Inside Look at String Evaluation

In this series, we will look at the various characteristics of tennis string without the tennis racquet!

Racquet Quest evaluates every string we use plus strings submitted from other sources. These evaluations are “No Prep” and “Prep”, which simply means the Prep string has been pre-stretched in the entire length. It has not been through a tennis racquet…yet!

The following images represent a string that has not been “prepped.”¬† After these plots are fully understood we will do the same string in the”prepped” format to see if there is a difference.

Ultimate Tensile Strength

What we notice immediately is the string is very “soft” as seen in the deflection of 47.8 mm to reach 50 pounds.¬† Also, the elasticity, the ability to recover to the original length, is fairly low.

The area under the 50-pound and 47.8 mark is the stress/strain curve that shows how the string behaves in three (3) cycles.  The load and number of cycles can be changed.

The long run (linearity) from the 50-pound mark to failure is quite good and suggests consistency.

The UTS, the ultimate tensile strength, of 127.1 pounds is good for this thin string.

The following plot shows the knot strength of this string.

Knot Strength

This plot is overlayed on the previous image so a quick comparison can be made.  It is common for knot strength to be lower than un-knotted string.  Knot strength is primarily important to the person tying the knot.  Knots rarely fail after they are successfully tied.  Pulling a knot too tight or jerking can break a knot.

This plot says to us that this string needs to be handled carefully when it comes to knots!  We would expect a knot strength of at least 80 pounds for typical monofilament strings, however, if this string exhibits extraordinary play characteristics anyone can learn to tie the knots!

You CAN tie knots!

Based on this information we would suggest this string for a player looking for extraordinary comfort, power, and relatively short life!

If, based on what you see here, you want to try it let us know!

 

 

So, here IS the difference!

This table will clarify the differences between the Pro Staff Six-One and Pro Staff X models.  While numbers are important, it is equally important to actually hit with the racquet(s) setup as you will be using them.

Pro Staff Six-One versus Pro Staff X

Click here to see the Wilson Pro Staff X

Click here to see the Wilson Pro Staff Six-One data

 

Pro Stock Limited Reserve

This is a high-performance string that has gone unnoticed for a while and I don’t know why!

Pro Stock Limited Reserve is a string we purchased because it has interesting characteristics that appealed to us however the client base is small.  Recently, however, with the number of players that are moving away from a polyester string, this has become a popular alternative!

The plot below shows why!

Pro Stock Limited Reserve

In a word, this plot looks very much like that of natural gut, and whatever you think natural gut is still considered the best performance material for racquet string!

What are we seeing here:

  • Linearity, the more linear the string the more consistent (predictable)
  • Elongation, at 33.1 mm at 50 pounds
  • Elasticity, 71.9 %
    • This is the area where the advantages of pre-stretching will be seen.
    • The curve will become essentially one line meaning the string returns to a nominal length after stretching.
  • Ultimate Tensile Strength, 163.6 pounds to fail (high), @107.2 mm deflection
  • Knot strength, @102.4 pounds, and surpasses natural gut in this property.

What we can’t see in the plot is the construction of this multifilament string.¬† Each strand is a thin, flat ribbon of polyolefin material.¬† The ribbons are much like the natural gut.


The plot below is a comparison of natural gut string and is included as a visual to compare to Pro Stock Limited Reserve and show how much natural gut fibers are the same for any string manufacturer.  Of course, manufacturing techniques, bonding agents, and coatings make the difference between a good gut and a not-so-good gut!

If you compare the Pro Stock Limited Reserve to natural gut you can quickly see why it may be a good string to try!

And by the way, it is probably at least $25.00 less than natural gut!

 

So, what IS the difference?

Wilson has presented us with a couple of choices when it comes to choosing a 100-square-inch racquet!

Just what we need…right?

Later we will have a comparison table showing the pertinent property data, but now we can  see the graphics difference between the two racquets:

Pro Staff Six-One 100

ProStaff X v14 100

The Pro Staff Six-One 100 has a very shiny rust color.  The Pro Staff X is the matt finish used on most of the v14 Pro Staff models.

In addition to the “shining,” the Six-One has the “normal” elliptical cross-section, while the “X” has a “box beam” geometry which is a little more narrow.

The Six-One is a Beefier” looking racquet!

The string spacing on the “X” is slightly more open, which may contribute to the power calculation being a bit higher.

The flex of the “X” is a little greater in the shaft area.

That is enough talk!” ¬†

Let’s look at the numbers:

ManufacturerWilson
Racquet ModelWilson Pro Staff X 100, v14
Reference Tension55

String
PEEK 7710
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC50.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour61.0 Pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS47.0 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT38 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC64 - After Stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour47.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness467.9 Lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams340
Weight, Ounces11.99
Balance, mm322
Balance, Inch12.68
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.73
Head Length13.06
Head Area, cm2643.4
Head Area, Sq. Inch99.7
Beam Height @ Grip, mm22.3
Beam Height @ Mid, mm22.0
Beam Height @ Tip22.0
Beam Width @ Grip, mm11.00
Beam Width @ Throat, mm11.00
Beam Width @ Mid, mm12.00(PWS)
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.00(including bumper)
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.627
Main String Grid7.50
Cross String Grid10.81
Density (% of head filled with string)81.2%
Average Cross String Space.569
Average Main String Space.469
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT MasterTensometer38
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in212.54
First Moment, Nm.841
Polar Moment341.0
Torsional Stability17
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2324
Swing Weight, Ounces11.43
Swing Weight Calculated352.2 (full-length)
Power, RDC53.0
Control, RDC47.0
Manueverability, RDC71.0
Power, Calculated 2088.8
Head Points6.61
Head Weight, %46.9%
Center of Percussion20.8
Dwell Time, ms9.00
Efective Stiffness - lbs28.1
K, Lb/In160.26
Recoil Weight158.85
Twist Weight240.78
End Weight 141.3
Tip Weight 198.9
9 O'Clock102.5
3 O'Clock101.9
Butt Cap135.6
COF, Main.529
COF, Cross.499

Click here to see the Comparison Table

 

Wrong Planet?

Yesterday a good friend was in the World Headquarters, and as usual, our discussion turned to player training, the necessity, and the over-training of players, mainly juniors!

This training may include the wrong equipment setup, unnecessarily stiff strings, and sometimes stiff, light racquets.  This may cause injuries at every level of player from recreational to professional!

My friend, by the way, is a Collegiate All-American, a professional player, and a coach! 

After we discussed how to change this behavior, she said something quite interesting;

“John, you are on a different planet!”

Yikes!

So two things can happen;

  1.  Abandon my planet
  2.  Invite you to join our planet!

We have chosen number 2!

  • to invite you to our¬†planet!
  • ¬†

¬†There will be no need for interplanetary travel right now, but we do need to pick a name for our planet, so, the person presenting the best name will be the Mayor of our planet (your name here)…for a while.

We hope you will join us and make our planet a place we can all go to discover, learn, share, and understand as much as we can about tennis equipment, customization, stringing, and “best practices”.

Please use the “Leave Comment” tab below to submit your name for our new planet!

Our mission is to keep players playing!

 

 

 

 

Wilson Pro Staff Six One 100, v14

As you know the Wilson Pro Staff Six One franchise has been around about as long as wooden racquets have been gone!  A long time!

Many racquets have come and gone. ¬†Some should not have “come” and some should not have “gone”, in my opinion.

This racquet, to me, is the epitome of the Pro Staff Six One series for a few reasons.

  • The 100-square-inch head size is ideal.
  • The thin 22mm beam is perfect.
  • The Shiny Rust finish is the best of all Pro Staffs!
  • The geometry and proportions are perfect.
  • The stiffness (flex) is satisfyingly low.

Wilson shiny Rust Pro Staff Six One 100

The specifications will tell us more about the racquet, but here are some things that don’t appear on the “spec” sheet.

  • ¬†This is a foam-filled racquet.
  • The FORTY-FIVE layup is used in this racquet.
  • The grommet barrels are large enough to allow string movement.
  • The bumper guard “string valley” is very deep.

Let’s take a look at the specifications.

ManufacturerWilson
Racquet ModelWilson Pro Staff Six One
Reference Tension55

String
PEEK 7710
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC52.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour58.6 Pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS50.6 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC63 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour50.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness487.2 Lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams332
Weight, Ounces11.71
Balance, mm330
Balance, Inch12.99
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.87
Head Length12.82
Head Area, cm2641.2
Head Area, Sq. Inch99.4
Beam Height @ Grip, mm22.0
Beam Height @ Mid, mm22.0
Beam Height @ Tip22.0
Beam Width @ Grip, mm12.85
Beam Width @ Throat, mm12.65
Beam Width @ Mid, mm12.38 (PWS)
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.27 (including bumper)
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.648
Main String Grid7.20
Cross String Grid10.06
Density (% of head filled with string)72.9%
Average Cross String Space.529
Average Main String Space.450
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT MasterTensometer35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76
First Moment, Nm.847
Polar Moment343.0
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2327
Swing Weight, Ounces11.53
Swing Weight Calculated361.5 (full-length)
Power, RDC51.0
Control, RDC50.0
Manueverability, RDC69.0
Power, Calculated 2067.9
Head Points4.00
Head Weight, %48.1 %
Center of Percussion20.8
Dwell Time, ms8.82
Efective Stiffness - lbs28.5
K, Lb/In166.67
Recoil Weight153.88
Twist Weight241.58
End Weight 131.0
Tip Weight 201.5
9 O'Clock100.9
3 O'Clock102.3
Butt Cap128.6
COF, Main.340
COF, Cross.366

We invite you to try this racquet!

 

 

What If?

What if you change string tension (reference) from 57 to 47?

Well, let’s see!

We have a big spreadsheet showing the cause and effect, but it is too confusing, so this will be a narrative post.

The client wanted to go down to 47 from 57 using the same string and, of course, in the same racquet. Here is what happens:

First, the previous data (57) was explored, and the RDC string bed stiffness was 59 when fresh.

The same racquet at 47 had an RDC string bed stiffness of 45 when fresh. That is a 23.7% decrease in string bed stiffness…fresh v fresh.

However, at the time of this stringing, due to tension loss, the 57 tension setting RDC string bed stiffness was 45, so let’s see how the 47 compares to the “used” string bed stiffness.

The RDC string bed stiffness (fresh) of the 47 is 45! So right now, both racquets have essentially the same string bed stiffness.

This will change, of course; however, if the point is to achieve a “softer” string bed right now, it would require a tension setting of less than 47!

 

String Shape

How’s the shape of your string?

Is it round, square, hexagonal, octagonal, triangular, or something else?

Does it matter?

The string pictured here is square. ¬†The dimension across the flat sides is roughly .048 inches/1.22mm, which means the largest dimension is about .063 inches/1.6mm but due to the rounded edges it is less than that. ¬†The wear is happening on the “flat” side (.048/1.22),¬†

A flat-sided string shape can create some issues when trying to achieve consistent string tension.  

Side View of Fail

Flat Side Wear

String Bed View

This is expected because the string will want to align with the flat side, not the edges.  This may cause the string to twist and create added friction when tensioning.

So, we can expect the “edges” to be exposed to the ball, and the “edges can create friction on the ball, which causes rotation! ¬†

Yea!  How much and for how long is hard to know.

I believe it is safe to say “square” is a good “shape” for your string to be in for polyester monofilaments which we are looking at here.

Solinco Confidential (string)

As you know, Racquet Quest, LLC does not promote polyester string to most tennis players. We do, however, test any racquet string we can.  This really helps us understand what happens during play and helps make a better performance selection for the player!

All of the information shown in the table is interesting but the most important data is Power Potential.  

We have added three (3) Solinco strings to the Power Potential table, so take a look here

You can “search” by a brand to quickly find any string you are interested in.

Head Gravity 2023 Team , MP, and Pro Comparison

Moving between several reviews to compare racquets is tiresome, for sure, and inefficient!

We don’t want you to be tired or inefficient, so we include our Three Racquet Comp Data for the new Head Gravity 2023 models!

The highlighted areas are significant and affect any racquet’s performance.

A word about “dwell time”. ¬†To get a more accurate view of the racquet we have elimiiated the player from the “slow” dwell time. ¬†This allows us to see excatly what happens when the ball is “dropped” on the string bed without any external force (your swing)!

If you have questions about any of this information please submit a comment.

Head Gravity Pro 2023

Head Gravity Pro 2023

Here comes the new Head Gravity Pro 2023, which brings some good stuff! Like a 100 square inch head with a string pattern of 18×20!

You will see more goodies when you look at the specifications!

This new Gravity Pro has a different “vibe” than last year’s model. ¬†Maybe it is the muted graphics!

The specifications will tell this is true “players” racquet!

Hint:  Swing Weight=338

You need to try this demo soon!  Trust me!

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Gravity Pro 2023
Reference Tension53
String
MonoGut ZX Pro (PEEK)
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC58.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour66.9 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS52.4 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT37 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC64 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour42.5
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness467.9 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams344
Weight, Ounces12.13
Balance, mm327
Balance, Inch12.87
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.849
Head Length12.85
Head Area, cm2643.5
Head Area, Sq. Inch99.7
Beam Height @ Grip, mm21.2
Beam Height @ Mid, mm20.5
Beam Height @ Tip20.5
Beam Width @ Grip, mm11.3
Beam Width @ Throat, mm11.3
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.0
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.5 (includes bumper)
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.693
Main String Grid7.87
Cross String Grid9.75
Density (% of head filled with string)71.4%
Average Cross String Space.488
Average Main String Space.406
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT37
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in206.94
First Moment, Nm.867
Polar Moment353
Torsional Stability15
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2338
Swing Weight, Ounces11.92
Swing Weight Calculated367.8
Power, RDC48
Control, RDC52
Manueverability, RDC61
Power, Calculated 2179.2
Head Points5.04
Head Weight, %47.7%
Center of Percussion21.0
Dwell Time, ms8.35
Efective Stiffness - lbs30.4
K, Lb/In185.90
Recoil Weight163.23
Twist Weight251.11
End Weight 138.2
Tip Weight 206.0
9 O'Clock104.5
3 O'Clock104.1
Butt Cap133.9
COF, Main.370
COF, Cross.309

 

Head Gravity Team 2023

The new Head Gravity Team 2023 is last year’s Gravity S, a stellar racquet for many players! ¬†The 104 square-inch head fits a particular niche, and the modest stiffness will appeal to many!

The head shape on this 104-inch head is more round and nicely proportioned, which adds to the approachability of this model.

As usual, the numbers will tell the story, so look at the specifications!

This is a great option if you want something over 100 square inch head!

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Gravity Team 2023
Reference Tension53
String
MonoGut ZX Pro (PEEK)
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC50.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour58.6 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS46.0 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT34 Kg/Cg
Racquet Flex, RDC60 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour46.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness394.2 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams310
Weight, Ounces10.93
Balance, mm335
Balance, Inch13.23
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width10.125
Head Length13.14
Head Area, cm2674.1
Head Area, Sq. Inch104.5
Beam Height @ Grip, mm22.5
Beam Height @ Mid, mm24.2
Beam Height @ Tip24.2
Beam Width @ Grip, mm10.8
Beam Width @ Throat, mm10.5
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.0
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.2 (includes bumper)
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.616
Main String Grid7.87
Cross String Grid10.50
Density (% of head filled with string)75.1%
Average Cross String Space.506
Average Main String Space.484
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT34
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in190.16
First Moment, Nm.809
Polar Moment324
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2308
Swing Weight, Ounces10.86
Swing Weight Calculated350.0
Power, RDC47
Control, RDC55
Manueverability, RDC81
Power, Calculated 1950.2
Head Points2.20
Head Weight, %49.0%
Center of Percussion20.5
Dwell Time, ms9.00
Efective Stiffness - lbs27.3
K, Lb/In160.26
Recoil Weight137.68
Twist Weight236.44
End Weight 116.9
Tip Weight 191.3
9 O'Clock96.6
3 O'Clock97.1
Butt Cap114.5
COF, Main.412
COF, Cross.309

Head Gravity MP 2023

Close behind the new Head Radical comes the new Head Gravity 2023! Not one but three (3!). The Gravity Pro, the Gravity MP, and the Gravity Team!

This Gravity MP 2023 demo racquet is ready to hit today!  If you have not hit with a Gravity you will be intrigued by the weight distribution.  

We are starting with the Gravity MP 2023.

Head Gravity has always used a multi-color graphic package with one color on one side and another color on the other side.  This was clever, and many players liked the look.

The new models use a “color-shifting” graphic that you can see here. ¬†The colors are subtly different depending on how you look at the racquet.

And the graphic starts at the butt end on one side and starts at the tip on the other!  So it has a lot going on. 

The racquet is a 100-square-inch head with a fairly thin beam and deep throat shaft.

The string pattern is 16×20, which fills up the hitting area and produces a fairly dense pattern in the center of the racquet. ¬†This may contribute to a slightly longer string life.

Let’s take a look at the specifications

You may notice the stiffness of this racquet should be perfect for the control component of your game and be very arm friendly (see effective stiffness).

Head Gravity MP 2023

 

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Gravity MP 2023
Reference Tension53
String
MonoGut ZX Pro (PEEK)
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC50.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour60.8 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS49.6 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC57 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour39.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness397.4 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams318
Weight, Ounces11.22
Balance, mm335
Balance, Inch13.19
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.03
Head Width9.91
Head Length12.86
Head Area, cm2645.9
Head Area, Sq. Inch100.1
Beam Height @ Grip, mm21.2
Beam Height @ Mid, mm22.5
Beam Height @ Tip22.5
Beam Width @ Grip, mm10.6
Beam Width @ Throat, mm10.6
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.0
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.3
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.617
Main String Grid7.70
Cross String Grid10.25
Density (% of head filled with string)70.0%
Average Cross String Space.515
Average Main String Space.425
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76
First Moment, Nm.827
Polar Moment338
Torsional Stability14
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2324
Swing Weight, Ounces11.43
Swing Weight Calculated356.9
Power, RDC46
Control, RDC56
Manueverability, RDC71
Power, Calculated 1867.4
Head Points2.68
Head Weight, %48.8%
Center of Percussion21.0
Dwell Time, ms9.00
Efective Stiffness - lbs26.6
K, Lb/In160.26
Recoil Weight150.77
Twist Weight233.27
End Weight 122.3
Tip Weight 197.8
9 O'Clock98.9
3 O'Clock99.7
Butt Cap119.8
COF, Main.426
COF, Cross.378

Wilson Pro Staff v14

Wilson Pro Staff 97 v14

Wilson Pro Staff v14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The initial response to the new Wilson Pro Staff 97 v14 graphics pack is similar to the Blade shifting color graphics…you either like it, or you don’t! There seems to be very little “in-between.”

We like the graphics!

Wilson Pro Staff v14

We care about the racquet’s appearance, but we really care about the specifications! ¬†

So here we go…

ManufacturerWilson
Racquet ModelWilson Pro Staff 97 v14
Reference Tension55
String
PEEK 1.25mm
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC51.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour64.1 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS49.0 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT34 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC66 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour49.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness447.2 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams330
Weight, Ounces11.64
Balance, mm324
Balance, Inch12.76
Length, Cm68.57
Length, Inch27.00
Head Width9.438
Head Length12.80
Head Area, cm2623.0
Head Area, Sq. Inch94.9
Beam Height @ Grip, mm21.0
Beam Height @ Mid, mm21.8
Beam Height @ Tip21.8
Beam Width @ Grip, mm11.1
Beam Width @ Throat, mm11.0
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.0
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.8 (includes bumper guard)
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.621
Main String Grid7.25
Cross String Grid10.13
Density (% of head filled with string)77.4%
Average Cross String Space.533
Average Main String Space.453
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT34
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in190.16
First Moment, Nm.822
Polar Moment336
Torsional Stability14
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2322
Swing Weight, Ounces11.36
Swing Weight Calculated346.4
Power, RDC53
Control, RDC47
Manueverability, RDC72
Power, Calculated 2036.6
Head Points5.98
Head Weight, %47.2%
Center of Percussion21.1
Dwell Time, ms8.91
Efective Stiffness - lbs28.8
K, Lb/In163.46
Recoil Weight158.78
Twist Weight220.98
End Weight 134.0
Tip Weight 195.9
9 O'Clock100.8
3 O'Clock100.5
Butt Cap128.1
COF, Main.323
COF, Cross.323

 

Numbers, numbers, numbers! What do they mean?

With each of our racquet reviews a long list of numbers is included.  It has been a few years since we explained what these numbers mean so here it is;

Numbers are your friend!

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Radical MP 2023
Reference Tension55 (what you tell the stingers to set the stringing machine).
This should be replaced by String Bed Stiffness (SBS)
String
MonoGut ZX Pro
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC53.0 Units (Babolat RDC)
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour64.9 pounds (Flex Four)
String Bed Stiffness - SBS51.8 pounds (Racquet Quest string bed stiffness SBS Master)
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 Kg/Cm (previously Beer's ERT1000)
Racquet Flex, Babolat RDC65 - After stringing (unstrung racquets will be slightly stiffer. Loaded from the tip)
Racquet Flex, FlexFour44.5 (Loaded from the COP)
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness379.7 lbs/Inch (stiffness across the 3 ad 9 o'clock positions of the racquet head)
Weight, Grams326
Weight, Ounces11.50
Balance, mm333
Balance, Inch13.11
Length, Cm68.57
Length, Inch27.00
Head Width9.63
Head Length12.79
Head Area, cm2623.0
Head Area, Sq. Inch96.7
Beam Height @ Grip, mm21.0 (how thick the racquet is looking at the side)
Beam Height @ Mid, mm22.5 (how thick the racquet is looking at the side)
Beam Height @ Tip20.5 (how thick the racquet is looking at the side)
Beam Width @ Grip, mm12.5 (how thick the racquet is looking at the front or face view)
Beam Width @ Throat, mm11.5 (how thick the racquet is looking at the front or face view)
Beam Width @ Mid, mm12.8 (how thick the racquet is looking at the front or face view)
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.8 (how thick the racquet is looking at the front or face view)
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.634 ( typically the natural ratio)
Main String Grid7.18 (the distance between the two outer most main strings)
Cross String Grid9.44 (the distance between the two outer most cross strings)
Density (% of head filled with string)69.6% (how much of the head area is filled with string)
Average Cross String Space.494 (how far apart the strings are). The farther apart the quicker the wear.
Average Main String Space.449
(how far apart the strings are). The farther apart the quicker the wear.
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35 (string bed stiffness in kilos per centimeter)
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76 (DT converted to pounds per inch)
First Moment, Nm.841 (sometimes called pickup weight)
Polar Moment347 (torsional weight)
Torsional Stability16 ( resistance to twisting on off center hits)
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2331 (the dynamic weight and the most significant property)
Swing Weight, Ounces11.68
Swing Weight Calculated361.5 (calculated from the butt end to the tip)
Power, RDC52 (property calculated by Babolat RDC)
Control, RDC49 (property calculated by Babolat RDC)
Manueverability, RDC66 (property calculated by Babolat RDC)
Power, Calculated 2101.4 (calculation based on several racquet properties)
Head Points3.15 ( a point is generally consider to be .125 inches/3.18mm)
Head Weight, %48.5%
Center of Percussion21.1 (highest COR)
Dwell Time, ms8.74 (length of time the ball is in contact with the string without a swing)
Efective Stiffness - lbs29.2 ( the calculated combined stiffness of the racquet and sting bed)
K, Lb/In169.87 (string bed stiffness in pounds/inch)
Recoil Weight156.44 (resistance to twisting about the grip)
Twist Weight226.48 (resistance to twisting about the neutral axis)
End Weight 126.0 (two scale system to calculate CG)
Tip Weight 197.7 (two scale system to calculate CG)
9 O'Clock105.1 (three scale system to assure symmetry)
3 O'Clock104.7(three scale system to assure symmetry)
Butt Cap115.6 (three scale system to assure symmetry)
COF, Main.416 (the stickiness of the string bed sliding the ball with the main strings)
COF, Cross.388(the stickiness of the string bed sliding the ball with the cross strings)

What is wrong with this picture?

Actually, it is going to be two (2) pictures! One with no narrative and one with an explanation of what is wrong!

No peeking!

Did you see what was wrong with this picture?  If you did, congratulations are in order!

If you didn’t know what was wrong with this picture, here it is! ¬†If you receive a freshly strung racquet that looks like this, take a close look at the strings and do not accept it if there is a “mis-weave” in the string bed!

Sometimes this condition is not easy to spot, so take a good look.

Some Time Off!

We are taking a few days off!

We are spending some time with one of our daughters and grandson…finally!

We will be out of the World Headquarters Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday!  February 5th the through the 9th, 2023

Thank you!

 

Head Radical MP 2023

You have seen the pretty pictures; now see the specs of this new Radical series!

We are starting our property review with the Head Radical MP 2023. ¬†The MP version will probably be the most popular due to the very lovely weight and “player” style head size of 98 inches!

Head Radical MP 2023

The Auxetic component should contribute to a comfortable but aggressive racquet.

As you look at the following specifications you may notice the addition of some “numbers”, specifically “beam width”. ¬†

We have been taking this number for many years but now believe it is time to expose it to you, the readers.  

Briefly, the beam height-to-width ratio contributes to in-plane stiffness which is important for consistent string bed stiffness (SBS).

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Radical MP 2023
Reference Tension55
String
MonoGut ZX Pro
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC53.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour64.9 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS51.8 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC65 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour44.5
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness379.7 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams326
Weight, Ounces11.50
Balance, mm333
Balance, Inch13.11
Length, Cm68.57
Length, Inch27.00
Head Width9.63
Head Length12.79
Head Area, cm2623.0
Head Area, Sq. Inch96.7
Beam Height @ Grip, mm21.0
Beam Height @ Mid, mm22.5
Beam Height @ Tip20.5
Beam Width @ Grip, mm12.5
Beam Width @ Throat, mm11.5
Beam Width @ Mid, mm12.8
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.8
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.634
Main String Grid7.18
Cross String Grid9.44
Density (% of head filled with string)69.6%
Average Cross String Space.494
Average Main String Space.449
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76
First Moment, Nm.841
Polar Moment347
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2331
Swing Weight, Ounces11.68
Swing Weight Calculated361.5
Power, RDC52
Control, RDC49
Manueverability, RDC66
Power, Calculated 2101.4
Head Points3.15
Head Weight, %48.5%
Center of Percussion21.1
Dwell Time, ms8.74
Efective Stiffness - lbs29.2
K, Lb/In169.87
Recoil Weight156.44
Twist Weight226.48
End Weight 126.0
Tip Weight 197.7
9 O'Clock105.1
3 O'Clock104.7
Butt Cap115.6
COF, Main.416
COF, Cross.388

Head…just when you thought it couldn’t get any better

Well, we think it just got better!

The Head Radical has always been one of the best performance racquets available and doesn’t require much in the way of annual changes!

You can order yours now for the release date of February 9, 2023

We think this new group is right on target!  Adding Auxetic in the throat brings this series into the overall success of the Auxetic component!

We will be doing full reviews very soon, but in the meantime, take a look at these new Radicals!

The Team is the new “S” in the Radical Series! ¬†Based on our initial testing, we think this model has a trick up its sleeve!

Clamp Riser…your friend!

The Clamp Riser eliminates the need to pull two main strings to start a string job!  There is really no need to use that procedure.

Clamp Riser

Sold as a set of 2. Can be used at a 20mm or 30mm rise depending on rotation.

1‚ÉĚ Any stringing machine with long, rotating string clamps is too low to capture the string properly for the first tension pull. ¬†The Clamp Riser fits under the clamp and raises it!

2‚ÉĚ The clamp holds the string securely at the proper height for the first pull, one string at a time!

The Clamp Riser is sold as a set of two (2) to justify the shipping cost! $17.99 per set.

Simply rotate the clamp riser depending on whether you need 20mm of height or 30mm. 

The Babolat Racket Station can use the 20mm height riser side, as seen here, and many other machines can probably use that height as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We have found that Baiardo prefers the 30mm height, as seen here. ¬†The riser height must be enough to allow the clamp base to “lock”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Racquet Quest purchase

Charges for shipping outside the US will be added to the total cost minus the US shipping charge.

 

 

 

The Same but Different!

How can two totally different things be the same in so many ways?

Here is a good example:

Wilson Sensation 16, natural v Wilson Sensation Plus 17, black.

Same but Different!

Looking a the stress/strain portion of the graph, it is nearly impossible to see any difference!

Both strings exhibit good elongation and elasticity.

Finally, when it comes to UTS the Sensation is a little stronger, as you would expect, for a 1.33mm string.

The Sensation Plus measures 1.26mm!  So, the UTS is pretty good!

So what’s the deal? ¬†

If you have been using Sensation but would like a black, thin string from Wilson simply use Sensation Plus!

 

 

ZUS Tennis

Never heard of them? ¬†I hadn’t either until yesterday!

ZUS is a Chicago-based company that offers several racquets with various specifications available.

A ZUS Custom Sven Goth Design came in for work, so we had a great opportunity to get all of the specifications and include them in a “racquet review”!

First, the racquet seems to be a well-made version of the Wilson Pro Staff RF, with an ever so slightly thinner modified box section beam.  the geometry is very much like the Wilson Pro Staff RF, as is the weight.

Who wouldn’t want to be modeled after the Pro Staff RF?

This racquet has a bunch of weight at the rear end, plus a shrink sleeve to increase the grip size, so it is loaded up with weight down there, which is OK!

Rear Weight

 

 

The racquet is foamed, probably the entire tube, which may contribute a more muted feel than a non-foamed racquet.  The Pro Staff RF is also foam filled.

The small oval piece is a lead or steel, weight sandwiched between the two halves of the shaft.  This construction makes it impossible to remove that weight if you want to, but it is good to have it there!

 

 

ManufacturerZUS
Racquet ModelZUS Custom Sven Goth Design
Reference Tension50
String
Prince Tour XR 16
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC53.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour59.1 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS50.6 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC63 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour41.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness438.0 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams354
Weight, Ounces12.49
Balance, mm316
Balance, Inch12.44
Length, Cm68.57
Length, Inch27.00
Head Width9.41
Head Length12.80
Head Area, cm2610.1
Head Area, Sq. Inch94.6
Beam Height @ Grip, mm20.5
Beam Height @ Mid, mm20.2
Beam Height @ Tip20.6
Beam Width @ Grip, mm10.8
Beam Width @ Throat, mm10.8
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.6
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.4
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.619
Main String Grid7.25
Cross String Grid9.68
Density (% of head filled with string).742
Average Cross String Space.509
Average Main String Space.453
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76
First Moment, Nm.854
Polar Moment348
Torsional Stability18
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2330
Swing Weight, Ounces11.64
Swing Weight Calculated353.5
Power, RDC51
Control, RDC49
Manueverability, RDC67
Power, Calculated 1965.9
Head Points8.46
Head Weight, %46.1%
Center of Percussion20.9
Dwell Time, ms8.74
Efective Stiffness - lbs28.8
K, Lb/In169.87
Recoil Weight167.26
Twist Weight235.57
End Weight 151.7
Tip Weight 197.9
9 O'Clock105.5
3 O'Clock108.1
Butt Cap137.1
COF, Main.382
COF, Cross.306

 

Surprise, surprise!

In all of my many years of tennis racquet work, two things happened this very month that I have never seen before!

    • Failure by Fruit
    • ZUS tennis racquet

How can this happen?  One surprise is amazing, but two?

You can click here to read about “Failure by Fruit”

You can click here to read about the “ZUS tennis racquet” and see some specs so you will be really informed!

We wonder what surprises are waiting for us!

 

Don’t be Beanie-less!

RQ Beanies!

Don’t be without a beanie!


Bag your beanie at Racquet Quest World Headquarters while supplies last. These are awesome!

Don’t be without a beanie for your chilly early morning tennis that is coming soon! ¬†Yes, even in Florida!

If you can’t stop by the World Headquarters we can send it. ¬†Just tell us where!

Bag a Beanie!

 

My chat with Oscar!

It is a rare opportunity to chat with one of the greatest basketball players of all time!  I am happy to share our conversation with all of you on our Racquet Quest Podcast!

Oscar Robertson!

Our podcast is available on Apple, Spotify, YouTube, and Twitter, or you can simply click the episode on the left side of the home page and listen without going anywhere!

This is a really fun conversation, and I hope you will listen and comment if you want.

Thank you, Oscar, for sharing, and thank you, Tia, for bringing us together!

Failure by Fruit!

Tennis strings fail for several reasons… but fruit!

I have been doing tennis racquet work for many years. However, this is a first for me!

Failure by Fruit!

Failure by Fruit

So what actually happened here?  This player carries everything she needs to compete at tournaments, including fruit.  In this case, it was bananas!

Well, bananas don’t last long, and these decided to go and take some very good sting with them!

The racquets were placed in the bag and remained there while the bananas did what bananas do…go bad!

Apparently, where the bananas contacted the string, the chemicals in the decomposing banana were enough to eat the string in not one but two racquets!

So, if you are considering sharing your bag with bananas, be sure they are separated from the racquets!

We are preparing to work on these racquets, and I can say they do smell good!

Solinco Black Out 300XTD

Solinco is not new to the tennis racquet business but the new offerings have some excellent features that I don’t remember on the previous ones we saw.

The two (2) racquets being reviewed are the Black Out 300XTD and White Out 305 XTD

Solinco Black Out

Cleverly, one is all black and one is all white!   I mention this because the graphics are minimal which I think is a very good design platform.

We will start the review with the Black Out.  As you might have guessed the 300XTD is a 300-gram, 27.5-inch-long racquet having a 100-square-inch hitting area.

This racquet comes with three (3) butt caps for adding much-needed weight!  Pop out the 0-gram standard and pop in a 5 or 10-gram replacement!  When you pop out the butt cap you will see this is a non-filled (hollow) racquet, and, there is nothing wrong with that.  You will also see that the grip pallet is a molded foam pallet, allowing for minor size and shape changes.

That is enough narrative.  Take a look at the specifications below:

ManufacturerSolinco
Racquet ModelSolinco Black Out 300XTD
Reference Tension42
String
Volkl V-Star 18
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC42.0 Units
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour39.0 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - SBS41.3 pounds
String Bed Stiffness - ERT28 Kg/Cm
Racquet Flex, RDC70 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour49.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness377.4 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams330
Weight, Ounces11.64
Balance, mm323
Balance, Inch12.72
Length, Cm69.9
Length, Inch27.52
Head Width9.81
Head Length12.98
Head Area, cm2645.3
Head Area, Sq. Inch100.0
Beam Height @ Grip, mm23.3
Beam Height @ Mid, mm24.5
Beam Height @ Tip23.7
Beam Width @ Grip, mm16.0
Beam Width @ Throat, mm15.7
Beam Width @ Mid, mm11.0
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.8
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.637
Main String Grid7.70
Cross String Grid10.68
Density (% of head filled with string).822
Average Cross String Space.562
Average Main String Space.481
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT30
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in167.79
First Moment, Nm.819
Polar Moment332
Torsional Stability15
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2317
Swing Weight, Ounces11.18
Swing Weight Calculated344.3
Power, RDC60
Control, RDC36
Manueverability, RDC75
Power, Calculated 2330.5
Head Points8.35
Head Weight, %46.2%
Center of Percussion20.9
Dwell Time, ms10.19
Efective Stiffness - lbs25.0
K, Lb/In125.00
Recoil Weight155.24
Twist Weight237.60
End Weight 136.4
Tip Weight 192.7
9 O'Clock100.4
3 O'Clock101.3
Butt Cap127.5
COF, Main.370
COF, Cross.332

 

Solinco White Out 305XTD

Solinco is not new to the tennis racquet space but this model is a much better effort than the ones we have seen previously.

Solinco White Out

This White Out 305XTD ¬†is a 305-gram, 27 ¬Ĺ long, 98-square-inch hitting area, thin beam racquet, that happens to be foam filled. ¬†The White Out is basically white…which is very good! ¬†The grip pallet is a molded foam format that will allow minor size and shape modifications.

The standard butt cap can be replaced with a 5 or 10-gram unit for needed weight.

We have added the beam height and beam width to the specification sheet.  Beam height is the thickness of the racquet when looking a the side and beam width is the thickness of the racquet when looking at the face.

Take a look at all the specifications:

ManufacturerSolinco
Racquet ModelSolinco White Out 305XTD
Reference Tension42
String
Volkl V-Star 18
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC39.0
ASPS, FlexFour50.5
Racquet Flex, RDC67 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour50.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness350.9 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams330
Weight, Ounces11.64
Balance, mm323
Balance, Inch12.72
Length, Cm69.9
Length, Inch27.52
Head Width9.62
Head Length12.95
Head Area, cm2631.5
Head Area, Sq. Inch97.9
Beam Height @ Grip, mm22.0
Beam Height @ Mid, mm22.0
Beam Height @ Tip22.3
Beam Width @ Grip, mm11.6
Beam Width @ Throat, mm13.0
Beam Width @ Mid, mm10.8
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.5
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.626
Main String Grid7.70
Cross String Grid10.56
Density (% of head filled with string).831
Average Cross String Space.556
Average Main String Space.481
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT30
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in167.79
First Moment, Nm.819
Polar Moment334
Torsional Stability14
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2320
Swing Weight, Ounces11.29
Swing Weight Calculated344.3
Power, RDC57
Control, RDC40
Manueverability, RDC73
Power, Calculated 2203.6
Head Points8.35
Head Weight, %46.2%
Center of Percussion21.1
Dwell Time, ms10.19
Efective Stiffness - lbs24.7
K, Lb/In125.00
Recoil Weight158.24
Twist Weight229.13
End Weight 100.1
Tip Weight 191.2
9 O'Clock100.1
3 O'Clock100.6
Butt Cap128.4
COF, Main.362
COF, Cross.300

Comparing Racquets (for real)

The Racquet Quest podcast recently aired a session on comparing racquets, so, to be fair I wanted to post that same data here. If you listened to the podcast this will sound familiar.

These racquets are not random. These racquets are owned by a client that is seeking an upgrade without going overboard!

Here is the data.  Take a look then read what the client has to say about them.

3 racquetcompare

Here is what Jess has to say:

“Hey, John –
Jess definitely likes the VS more than the Rafa. She said that she gets more easy power and stability with the Rafa but she’s able to accelerate faster on the forehand side with the VS.

She also felt like the VS was more maneuverable at the net. She said that if she’s in control of the point that she can really whip her forehand for a winner. She definitely noticed the lighter swing weight and liked that.

However, she also said that sometimes it feels a little unstable – like the VS is getting pushed around a bit. For example, she noticed that the head of the racquet can twist sometimes if her opponent nails a hard ball at her.

She has more control for sure with the VS – felt like she blasted more balls out with the Rafa. Overall, she likes the racquet- just would like a little more stability.”

By the way, Jess had not seen the racquet data prior to her hitting.  So, there you have it.  I believe you can see how much numbers help us find the right performance characteristics for a racquet.

 

Let’s Compare

We publish many racquet reviews that include comprehensive data to be used to speed up the selection process for players looking to review racquets and possibly demo them.

We thought it might be fun to do a little comparison of racquets in a simple format and we are starting with this one!

When considering racquets there is one “weight” that outweighs them all and that is swing weight! ¬†Swing weight is also described as inertia which is, in our discussions, ¬†the term used to describe the momentum of a tennis racquet. ¬†Once it gets going it does not want to stop which equals power (sort of F=MA)

compare

We will be adding groups of three (3) racquets whenever possible and when new racquets are introduced.

Weight is your friend!

 

 

Our Questron in Action!

As you know, Racquet Quest is a data-driven business, and data requires numbers. To generate those numbers, we have designed and built several devices.

One device is the Questron!

The Questron is used to test every string we receive, and the data is compiled to understand where that particular string fits.

So, instead of talking about it we have included a short video!

Thank you for watching our Questron in Action!  If you have a question, or a particular string of interest, please let us know.  We may have already taken the data!  On GASP.network there are many graphs of previous tests.  GASP.network is a membership ($40.00 one time) site.

 

 

Are Last Years Racquets Worth…Less?

It happens every year.

You know, introducing “new and Improved” tennis racquet(s)! Not one, but many!

How much better can they be? Make no mistake, new materials are always available, and those can be beneficial to the properties of a tennis racquet; however, in my opinion, and history, most of those properties will not be a significant “positive” to the player, and in some cases may be less than “desirable”.

So are last year’s racquets worthless? Absolutely not!

To make room at retail for the new racquets, last year’s models are substantially reduced. Sometimes to an unreasonably low price for the product! This is “good news” for manufacturers and online giants but not necessarily for your local tennis specialty shop. So what, you say!

This is “what”

From what we see at the World Headquarters of Racquet Quest, the online and other non-tennis specific outlets’ preparation of the racquet(s) may be sub-standard, and in fact, sometimes the racquets are not the desired model (another story for another time). ¬†We don’t believe this is intentional, but it does create issues for the purchaser and maybe the seller.

The business model of Racquet Quest has always been to provide the very best preparation for every tennis racquet! ¬†We recognize that players want the best possible deal on everything purchased. However, we keep a supply of outstanding tennis racquets that are best sellers of last year, and maybe two years ago! These racquets will not be relegated to the scrap heap, nor will they be “given away”! ¬†They are valuable!

These tennis racquets will be reduced in price but not to some of the prices popping up online!

Of course, our “full custom” racquets are always available for those demanding the very best and are willing to invest what it takes to get there! ¬†It may be less than you think, and it may be a racquet that is not a “current” model.

Racquet Quest can help you decide on a tennis racquet that may be purchased online.  That is OK!

All we ask is that you take the time to confirm what you intend to get and that you consider using your local tennis specialty shop for preparation!

Thank you!

 

 

 

Wondering about the ThermoPen ONE?

If you were wondering why the ThermopPen ONE was on this site I don’t blame you! I was surprised to see it there myself!

Here is why…

A good client and friend is in the food supply service and we are constantly talking about food and string! He used VS Touch by the way. Anyway, I asked about a food thermometer and he recommended this one, and I went to the ThermPen site while working on this one.

So, the comment I made on Twitter made its way to this site. The ThermoPen ONE is quite frankly a great device!

String Savers

String savers are on my mind today for several reasons so I thought I would post something about them that may be of interest. ¬†Let’s see!

String Savers are tiny little pieces of material that are “grooved” to cradle the string and provide a tiny barrier between rubbing strings, therefore creating a longer, happier life!

String Savers are normally used when stringing your tennis racquet with natural gut string to help the $75.00 job last longer.

But what else do string savers do?

Well, in the case we see here it increases the swing weight from 332 to 341! So 286 of these tiny things have an impact on swing weight! 

Probably the typical reaction would be an increase in string bed stiffness but that is not the case, plus the string bed stiffness is ever-changing anyway.

Searching for something?

The Racquet Quest website has always had a “search” function. However, you may not know where it is!

I didn’t because I usually don’t search from the “home” page.

To search the entire site for any word, go to the “Search RQ” field on the left side of the page, not too far from the top.

Type in what you are looking for, and soon you will have the content you want!

The search function is a great way to find things quickly!

 

String Frequency Calculator on your iOS or Android Phone!

We are happy to announce our popular SFC application can now be carried around on your phone and tablet!

String Frequency Calculator

Scan this QR code, and the application will be on your phone whenever you need to know when to string your racquet!

This calculation is based on the peak performance of your tennis racquet!

If you are not demanding peak performance for your game right now, you can eliminate your “player style,” which will increase the time between suggested stringing.

The current “player styles” are beg, rec, club, and tour.

A “tour” player would want peak performance, but it is also essential that we, at any level, should expect our string to help us!

The “Value/Playability ratio is subjective (a little) but it places a value on the enjoyment, and comfort, and we know that playing with Natural Gut is more enjoyable than polyester, therefore the favorable ratio.

Our String Frequency Calculator application will help us enjoy tennis more, knowing that we maximize the racquet!

The Racquet Quest ‚ÄėString Frequency Calculator‚Äô app as well as other apps we plan on releasing in the near future, are hosted by and available free to users via our partner ‚ÄúOpen as App‚ÄĚ. ¬†

Steps to download and use our free apps:

  • When you scan our app QR code, you will be prompted to download the Open as App iOS or Android app to your device and create an account. Alternatively, you can simply sign in using your Microsoft 365, Google, or Apple account.
  • You will then see the app you scanned a QR code for in Open as App.
  • Once you open the String Frequency Calculator app within Open as App, you will be able to add it to your iOS or Android home screen, avoiding having to open Open as App every time to access our apps.

To do so, follow the simple steps explained below:

  1. Open¬†on your phone¬†the mobile application ‚ÄúOpen as App‚ÄĚ
  2. Tap¬†on the app of interest (eg. ‚ÄúStringing Frequency Calculator‚ÄĚ)
  3. Tap on the three vertical dots at the top-right of the screen
  4. Tap¬†‚ÄúAdd to Home screen‚ÄĚ
  5. Confirm¬†by tapping ‚ÄúAdd‚ÄĚ
  6. Done!  You should now see the application directly on the home screen of your device!

 

 

Congratulations, Mustangs!

The New Washington Mustangs tennis has grown from five (5) to twelve (12) players in just one year!  Fantastic!

New Washington Mustangs

The team is playing Jeffersonville in the Sectionals which will be a tough match! The Mustangs #! Doubles won their conference so don’t be surprised at how well they do against anyone!

The only name I know in the picture is Rafael, the coach on the left.  Rafael moved from Florida to Indiana and took his love of tennis with him!  It looks like his team is poised to do great things!

Maybe we will see them at the USTA Campus sometime!

Way to go team!

 

SBS Update

We have gone through our string bed stiffness device (SBS) and are nearly settled on the final design! We have been using this device for several months, and we are very excited!

As discussed before, Racquet Quest, LLC believes string bed stiffness is the most efficient and accurate way to communicate how we want our racquet to feel…not reference tension!

We are on this mission for that reason!

There have been, and still are, several devices that are used for that, but what is needed is a player, coach, technician, and supplier consortium to make it happen!

The device will be 100% mechanical, light and fit in a tennis bag, easy and fun to use, and accurate! That is a lot to ask from a single device, but I think we have achieved it!

Oh, yes, it must be financially acceptable to every tennis player, which it will be!
The first pre-production units may be available for testing before general release.

We Need You!
Please take a minute to select either “Yes” or “No” and submit the following form. Your participation is important!

Congratulations, Redbug Topspinners!

Congratulations, team, on a great finish…like #1 I believe!

Redbug Topspinners

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A big Thank You to your Captain, Reggie, for sharing this news with us!  

We are anxious to hear how you do in the new season so please keep us informed!

Good luck!

 

The Elephant in the Room!

I suspect we all have heard that expression!

It means there is something that everyone tries to ignore, but it is too large to do so!

I recently read an article in Racquet Sports Industries authored by Georgetta L. Morque. The title is “Tackling Tennis Elbow.” Tennis elbow is an important topic and deserves much attention. Georgetta is writing about ways to mitigate tennis elbow after the fact.

So, here is the elephant in the room; STIFF string!

 

Let’s try to prevent tennis elbow, so it does not need to be treated!

When we say stiff, it means a string with less than 4% elongation at 60 pounds which is our testing parameter. Most strings, and for this discussion, strings exhibiting that property will be monofilament PET-based (polyester).

Fully understanding this required a lot of testing, both lab and play, for many playing styles and racquets. To make a long story short, as a racquet technologies business, we decided not to promote polyester strings for most players. That sounds silly, but why take a chance when you don’t have to!

Our success is based on helping you, the player, perform the best you can, so it does not make sense to promote something contrary to that philosophy. Probably 75% of our clients have come to us for something different, so we have a “head start.”¬†

So why do so many players use it or want to use it? 

We believe it is because they have not been exposed to alternative string materials. Some outstanding players at the pro level use it, so it must be good, and it is for about 10-11 games. Of course, manufacturers and marketers of polyester string stand to make a nice profit! It is in their best interest to promote products by adding some terminology and material to make the string less stiff.

A polyester string is deficient in power and needs to be walloped, and the harder it is hit, the stiffer it becomes, which is the problem. Developing bodies can’t tolerate that level of impact for long.

Please let us know your experience with strings of any type!

 

Head Boom Team L 2022

Like the Head Boom Team 2022, the Head Team L 2022 has been much anticipated!

Finally, a 107 square inch head without the ridiculous thick beam and ultra-lightweight, a legitimate “tweener”!

The Boom Team L has the highest power level assigned to recent Head racquets coming in at “900”, compared to the Boom Team at 800 and the Boom Pro at 400. If a power racquet is what you are looking for, this may be a good choice!

The Boom Team L is a slightly longer racquet at 27.35 inches. This increase in length increases the swing weight without adding weight. You can think of swing weight as “leverage.”

The Boom Team L incorporates all the newest materials and design chops of the viral Boom Pro and Boom MP.

The specifications will give you a better idea of where this racquet may fit your game.

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Boom Team L 2022
Reference Tension56 lbs - 25.4 kg
String
Head Reflex MLT 17
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC45.0
ASPS, FlexFour55.0
Racquet Flex, RDC63 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour46.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness339.8 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams290
Weight, Ounces10.23
Balance, mm353
Balance, Inch13.90
Length, Cm69.5
Length, Inch27.362
Head Width10.15
Head Length13.25
Head Area, cm2679.5
Head Area, Sq. Inch105.6
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.643
Main String Grid7.90
Cross String Grid10.56
Density (% of head filled with string).792
Average Cross String Space.556
Average Main String Space.494
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT31
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in173.39
First Moment, Nm.805
Polar Moment331
Torsional Stability18
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2313
Swing Weight, Ounces11.04
Swing Weight Calculated361.4
Power, RDC53
Control, RDC48
Manueverability, RDC78
Power, Calculated 2139.2
Head Points-1.73
Head Weight, %50.8%
Center of Percussion20.7
Dwell Time, ms9.48
Efective Stiffness - lbs26.3
K, Lb/In144.23
Recoil Weight129.71
Twist Weight221.11
End Weight 97.7
Tip Weight 192.3
9 O'Clock93.0
3 O'Clock92.8
Butt Cap103.8

Head Boom Team 2022…BOOM!

It is here, and I bet you heard another big BOOM recently!

The Head Boom Team 2022 has arrived and is ready for you to try! The Boom Team is a valuable addition to the Head lineup.

For years players have been asking for a 102 square inch racquet that has the “player” characteristics they wanted.

Player characteristics can mean different things to different players, but here is what the Head Boom Team 2022 has:
A fairly thin beam
A thin head cross-section
A modified box beam shaft cross-section

This racquet continues with Graphene and fresh Auxetic material that has been popular in the Boom Pro and Boom MP!

All specifications are in the chart below but suffice to say; this is a significant step in the right direction!

Looking at the inside of the shaft, you will notice the transitional shape from a thin box beam into a slightly thicker trapezoidal beam.

The head shape also continues with the broader upper section like the Boom Pro and Boom MP. Most “aggressive” shots are hitting the string bed in this area, so giving it more energy makes sense!

The density of the string in that area should contribute to good string life.

The first thing you notice upon pickup (first moment) is the weight distribution. While this is still a “headlight” model (see the specs below), the weight is toward the tip of the racquet.

We have had great results with the Boom Pro and Boom MP in both “retail” and full custom racquets, so, If you are considering a racquet upgrade, this one should be on your list!

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Boom Team 2022
Reference Tension55 lbs - 24.9 kg
String
Head Reflex MLT 17
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC48.0
ASPS, FlexFour64
Racquet Flex, RDC61 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour45.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness389.6 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams300
Weight, Ounces10.58
Balance, mm337
Balance, Inch13.27
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width9.97
Head Length13.065
Head Area, cm2659.7
Head Area, Sq. Inch102.3
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.642
Main String Grid7.80
Cross String Grid10.80
Density (% of head filled with string).845
Average Cross String Space.568
Average Main String Space.500
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT33
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in184.57
First Moment, Nm.786
Polar Moment320
Torsional Stability15
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2305
Swing Weight, Ounces10.76
Swing Weight Calculated340.7
Power, RDC46
Control, RDC54
Manueverability, RDC83
Power, Calculated 1921.4
Head Points1.89
Head Weight, %49.1%
Center of Percussion20.8
Dwell Time, ms9.18
Efective Stiffness - lbs26.9
K, Lb/In153.85
Recoil Weight138.76
Twist Weight222.21
End Weight 114.3
Tip Weight 187.8
9 O'Clock91.5
3 O'Clock93.6
Butt Cap114.8

Sign Up For Good Communication!

Over the past few years, telephone communication has become more frustrating due to robocalls!

I know how frustrating this can be for you because it also happens to us…so we are trying to do something about it.

We are activating a new SMS service that will allow us to communicate more quickly and efficiently. SMS is simply a text message sent to your phone instead of e-mail.

“Short Message Service is a text messaging service component of most telephone, World Wide Web, and mobile telephony systems. It uses standardized communication protocols to enable mobile phone devices to exchange short text messages.”

To get this to work, we need you to “opt In”! On the home page of this site are two “sigh-up” buttons, one on the right and one on the left! That is how important we believe this communication is! Two buttons!

OPT-In

Please join us in this new communication service to keep you informed about the “Spring Cleaning” going on now, plus other exciting things planned for the future!

We will not send you too much stuff or share your information!

Goodbye, Russell

Our Friend Russell Williams succumbed to his three (3) year battle with ALS on the 29th of March.

I include an obituary for Russell because it includes a link to support the University of Florida ALS research program.

Russell was an avid tennis player, as he was by all accounts quite good. We have forty (40) of his sixty (60) or so Babolat Pure Control racquets that he loved so much. Russell kept the racquets in top shape, so he would never consider switching!

Sophie, Russells’ daughter, is quite an accomplished tennis player and will be going to UF, where she has signed to play tennis!

Russell Willams Obituary

Goodbye, our friend!

Barbara planted a Reed Begonia for Russell. ¬†If you are near The Leu Botanical Garden in Orlando you can find Russell’s begonia in the White Garden.

“I planted a white reed begonia in the White Garden.¬†¬†We will watch it grow and flower and think of all of you.”¬†

SBS…what is it and why should we care?

We have made several posts regarding SBS, which is “String Bed Stiffness” and this is another one!

If you read this post we really need your comment(s), really!

String bed stiffness is the “feeling” when the ball hits the string on a tennis racquet. ¬†Due to the various string materials there will be “soft” and “hard” feelings. ¬†But wait, there’s more!

The string bed is made up of several strings, some longer called the Main string (M)and some shorter called the Cross string(X). ¬†Using “reference” tension each of the sets of string will be pulled at the same machine setting! ¬†It the machine is set at 50 pounds the tension head will stop pulling when it feels 50 pounds of resistance, regardless of what he tension inside the racquet head may be.

SBS is the most effective data for comparing tennis racquet stringing!

Let’s say you come into the world headquarters and we ask you what SBS you would like to have? ¬†Would you know? ¬†Probably not and not many would! ¬†We have grown up using the term “reference tension”, not SBS.

Reference tension is “number” you would ask your racquet technician to set the stringing machine tension system on. ¬†That number will probably be between 30 and 60 pounds (‚Čą13 to 26 Kilo).

So, depending on many other variables, such as string material, string pattern, stringing machine, stringer technique, etc., you can end up with may different versions of the same “reference tension”.

A better way, and one we have been using for over thirty (30) years, is SBS but not everyone has bought into the concept, even though a qualified racquet technician will have a way to measure SBS!  Maybe because it is too much trouble to figure out what your desired SBS from machine X would be from machine A!  It is not!

There have been several really good SBS data collection devices but they have been difficult to use, and pricy!  Not to mention gigantic!

A call to action!
So here is where you come in,

Would you purchase a SBS data collection device?

How much would you pay for such a device?

Would you prefer a mechanical device or an electronic device?

The device must be portable, that is easily carried in a racquet bag or backpack

¬† ¬† Yes or It doesn’t matter

It must be easy to use.

If you use an SBS device would you use a racquet technician that did not know what SBS is or how to measure it?

Thank you for adding your comments to this discussion!  It is important stuff!

 

New Head Racquet Names

There is a need for clear descriptions of tennis racquets so you, and we can make good buying decisions.

Head has applied this to the Prestige 2021 Series and it is a little confusing, maybe. So here is the information as we know it right now and according to the racquets in stock is correct:

New Head Prestige Names

You can see the entire Prestige 2021 Line-Up including additional data here

 

…then there was this big BOOM!

Boom Pro

The big BOOM you heard was the arrival of the new Head Boom MP and Boom Pro racquets at the World Headquarters!

Head Boom MP

This is very exciting news for those that have been waiting!

The wait is over!

For those that pre-ordered, your racquet will be prepared for you quickly. ¬†For those that have not yet tried the new Boom series…what are you waiting for?

We also offer Full Custom Boom MP and Boom Pro racquets that are built for you including longer length if desired.  

Either way, we think you will be hearing more big Booms very soon!

The new Boom Series promises to be one of the best new racquets! MP or Pro!

 

Head Lynx Touch! Two for One?

Several weeks ago we received the first sets of Head Lynx Touch 17 gauge strings. ¬†Yesterday we received the Lynx Touch 16 gauge version and want to share the differences…numerically!

Quickly, this string is composed of two (2) separate but “combined” filaments. ¬†So, is this a monofilament or a multifilament? ¬†The numbers indicate it reacts like a monofilament as we have become familiar with it.

Head Lynx Touch

Visually the string components are obvious.

The inner filament is black and the outer covering is translucent.

 

Let’s start with the 17 gauge version:

  Lynx Touch 17

The area under the heavy red lines is the “stress/strain” curve and we see that this string takes 23.5mm to reach the 50-pound mark. ¬†This is just a number unless it is compared to other strings so it is neither good nor bad, right now!

You can see that the string will hold up to 149.8 pounds before it breaks. ¬†This is tensile strength and may be important when considering the amount of “notching” that can occur. ¬†The “knot” strength of this version is 132.4 pounds.

Now let’s look at the 16 gauge version:

Lynx Touch 16

The difference is subtle. ¬†The 16 gauge version is a little stiffer (expected) and a little stronger in tension ¬†(also expected). ¬†The “knot” strength of this version is 133.6 pounds.

What is interesting is the “grouping” of the stress/strain cycles on both strings. ¬†They indicate a good elasticity. ¬†The closer to the “zero” point on unloading the better!

In our opinion, both versions of the string would be considered “stiff” and suitable for the player looking for a stiff but stable string as our creep test confirmed.

If you currently use stiff strings and would like better consistency this would definitely be a candidate ./

We Believe!

In addition to our commitment to full custom racquets, we also believe in racquets that have been pushed aside by newer models just because it is the thing to do each year!

Of course, there can be material and design changes to racquets that make them desirable and that is always a good thing but maybe not every year!  Our experience has been that a typical consumer will use a racquet for about three (3) years.  But we also know that there are those players that want the very latest of everything!

This post is to let you know that there is life before the latest racquets!

We know the Head Speed Graphene Touch is an extraordinary tennis racquet! ¬†The shared hole string pattern was around for a short time but it is a good pattern…so we have some of those!

The Head Prestige Tour Graphene 360+ is another incredible tennis racquet that should not be overlooked even though the Auxetic Prestige series is here. ¬†The Prestige Tour features a 99 square inch head size with an 18×19 string pattern. ¬†This is a real “players” racquet, to use the common descriptive, although anyone can play with this racquet. ¬†We have these!

The Yonex V-Core without the VDM is another example of a good racquet being replaced before its time, and the same goes for the V-Core Pro 97 and 100!  Some players prefer the feedback of the non-VDM racquets.  We have those.

The previous version of the Wilson Ultra 100 is preferred by some due to the grip pallet configuration and construction.

So what is the point, here?

Very simply it is to let everyone know that there is life after new models by opting for an older model, and, letting those that prefer previous models know that some are available. ¬†These racquets will not be “dumped”, they are too good for that!

Of course, there are not many of the “special” racquets so use the “Easy Order” tab to let us know you are thinking about one or more!

 

 

Do You Need Something Special – Update

Happy New Year! 

If starting the new year with full custom racquets sounds exciting take a look at what is new!

We have begun to receive additional full custom racquets and components so this update will let you know what is available now.

Full Custom Racquet Components

For 2022 we have added:

Head Prestige Pro (Auxetic) ¬†98,¬†Thin beam: 21, 20, 20mm, String Pattern: 18×20

Head Boom Pro (Auxetic) ¬†98,¬†Thin beam: 22mm, String Pattern: 16×19

Head Boom MP (Auxetic) ¬†100,¬†Thinish beam: 21, 24, 23.5mm,¬†String Pattern: 16×19

Head Extreme Tour (big picture above) 98,¬†Thin beam: 21, 23, 22mm, String Pattern: 16×19

Head Extreme MP (360+) ¬†100,¬†Thinish beam: 23, 26, 21mm, String Pattern: 16×19

Head Gravity Pro (hot lava/teal)(360+) 100,¬†Thin beam: 20mm, String Pattern: 18×20

*Head Prestige Mid (Graphene Touch), 93, Thin beam: 20mm, String Pattern: 16×19

Head Calfskin Leather Grip

These are limited in quantity and require complete customization and assembly to create a full custom racquet for you. ¬†If you are interested please let us know so we can begin the specification conversation. ¬†We have designed an “order” format however it does not allow for the conversation necessary to create your racquet, so…

Use the “Easy Order” tab to get started.

*One Remaining

 

 

 

 

Do You Need Something Special?

Full Custom Racquet Components

We have a few “full custom” racquets remaining and when these are gone there will not be any more until later in 2022!

So, if you are interested in a “special” racquet for yourself or a tennis player you like, now is the time!

We have Head Extreme Tour, Head Extreme MP, Gravity Pro, and Head Speed MP in very limited numbers. These racquets can be configured in lengths up to 27.75 inches, in any grip size from 1/4 to 5/8 ( 2 to 5), and any weight and swing weight.  Either leather or synthetic grips are available.  

Of course, custom stringing can be added.  All orders must be received by December 13th if you need your full custom racquet for a gift.

Please use the Easy Order tab on this site if you have any questions or want to place your order.  You may text us at 407.491.4755

What’s The Difference?

As tennis players, you must constantly ask “what’s the difference” when it comes to tennis racquets and string! Well, as racquet technicians we ask the same questions!

This post is intended to showcase the differences of string in testing, not playing, however, some of the data may be noticeable to the player in certain situations.

What this graph shows us, in addition to our trying to save a tree by printing on the back of previously used paper, is that each of these stings will provide almost the same performance. This is indicated by the curve and how closely related the strings are.

Tensile Strength Comparison

The differences you do see here can be attributed to the gauge, or diameter, of the string, with the largest diameter (Tour Bite)¬†having the highest tensile strength. ¬†Down in the “hitting” displacement range (way below the 39.9mm!), there is very little difference.

The tensile strength can be a factor as the string begins to “notch” or otherwise come apart. ¬†Each of the strings in this graph is monofilament so notching would be the failure mode in a racquet.

 

Head Prestige Pro 2021

This years Head Prestige Pro is last years Prestige MP. ¬†This name change was made to synchronize all the 18×20 string patterns as the “Pro” model…I think!

So, what’s in a name? ¬†A thin beam, heavy (sort of), 18×20 pattern, players racquet, that’s what! ¬†The Prestige Pro also includes the new Auxetic material and construction for a refined feel.

For some reason Head Prestige racquets have been called “stiff” by some and this is certainly not the case and never has been. ¬† This racquet is not stiff! As with any racquet the string selection can have a huge effect on “stiffness” so take a look at the effective stiffness!

I believe this is going to be a “control freaks” racquet! ¬†This racquet could also be a baseliners dream come true. ¬†The weight will drive through the ball and the swing weight will allow for some last nano-second stroke adjustments.

Take at look at the data below then go to the Prestige 2021 Comparative Data post to see all the models in one place.

A baseliners dream!

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Prestige Pro 2021
Reference Tension52 lbs - 23.6 kg
String
Head Reflex MLT 17
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC53.0
ASPS, FlexFour62.5
Racquet Flex, RDC58 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour36.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness326.1 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams342
Weight, Ounces12.06

Balance, mm318
Balance, Inch12.52
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width9.48
Head Length13.06
Head Area, cm2627.4
Head Area, Sq. Inch97.2
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.653
Main String Grid7.56
Cross String Grid10.24
Density (% of head filled with string).791
Average Cross String Space.513
Average Main String Space.417
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76
First Moment, Nm.832
Polar Moment333
Torsional Stability15
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2318
Swing Weight, Ounces11.22
Swing Weight Calculated345.8
Power, RDC45
Control, RDC56
Manueverability, RDC75
Power, Calculated 1811.5
Head Points7.87
Head Weight, %46.4%
Center of Percussion20.7
Dwell Time, ms8.74
Efective Stiffness - lbs27.7
K, Lb/In169.87
Recoil Weight157.84
Twist Weight230.87
End Weight 143.2
Tip Weight 198.9
9 O'Clock102.8
3 O'Clock100.3
Butt Cap140.3

Head Prestige 2021 Series Comparative Data

Jumping back and forth between reviews and data is not fun nor is it efficient so we have been posting comparative data. Now all the important stuff is in one place.

All of the data is based on a “play ready” racquet. ¬†That means an overgrip and vibration damper, and unless otherwise noted…string!

As you are looking at the data try to determine which numbers mean the most to you and how you could use them.  For example, the Pro has an overall weight of 342 with a swing weight 318.  How does that compare to the MP?

Keep in mind that weight and swing weight can increased but not easily decreased. ¬†No, making the racquet more “head light” statically does not reduce the swing weight as recorded on testing devices that grab the racquet 10cm from the end! ¬†That is why static balance (CG) should not be used as a performance metric.

Click here to see the data!

 

 

Head Prestige Tour 2021

This racquet has the potential to be the hottest new Prestige in a long time. The “Tour” series is not new to the Prestige line but this one has some differences that are meaningful, we think!

This new Tour is a 16×19 string pattern inserted into a 95 square inch hitting area! Compare that to the previous Tour with a 18×19 string pattern in a 99 square inch head(now the new Prestige MP)…so you can see where this one is headed!

All of the new Prestige 2021 racquets will come with the full cap system that has become the “iconic” Prestige accoutrement. ¬†

Also included in the Prestige Tour is the Auxetic material and construction that is intended to provide a better feeling impact and maybe a little more “energy”. ¬†The shaft has a slightly different geometry and is a little shorter than some other models, however, the graphics indicate the shaft is “elongated”.

The “box” beam is a relatively constant 22mm from start to finish and is beautifully done in matt black transitioning into the Prestige maroon.

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Prestige Tour 2021
Reference Tension53 lbs - 24.0 kg
String
Victrex 7718 (PEEK)
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC50.0
ASPS, FlexFour63.5
Racquet Flex, RDC63 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour42.5
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness384.6 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams336
Weight, Ounces11.85

Balance, mm326
Balance, Inch12.83
Length, Cm68.5
Length, Inch26.968
Head Width9.406
Head Length12.78
Head Area, cm2608.9
Head Area, Sq. Inch94.4
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.620
Main String Grid7.20
Cross String Grid9.125
Density (% of head filled with string).695
Average Cross String Space.464
Average Main String Space.445
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT34
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in190.16
First Moment, Nm.844
Polar Moment347
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2331
Swing Weight, Ounces11.68
Swing Weight Calculated357.1
Power, RDC53
Control, RDC47
Manueverability, RDC66
Power, Calculated 1968.0
Head Points5.20
Head Weight, %47.6%
Center of Percussion21.1
Dwell Time, ms9.00
Efective Stiffness - lbs27.9
K, Lb/In160.26
Recoil Weight161.61
Twist Weight223.59
End Weight 136.8
Tip Weight 200.6
9 O'Clock99.5
3 O'Clock101.4
Butt Cap134.9

 

Head Boom MP 2022

Head has introduced a brand new racquet! So, you say, what’s new about that they do it every year! Yes, but this is a different racquet!

This is the Boom!
In all the years we have been dealing with Head it has become clear that they are not averse to making new things…instead of drastically changing old things.

The Boom is available in a Pro version and a MP version, with the Pro version being a little heavier.

So the Boom, which will be available in January of 2022, (pre order now!) is a new racquet and it is not shy about it!

The head shape is a little different, the shaft is a little different, and the Auxetic material and construction is a little different and all these “littles” add up to a totally different hitting experience!

The shaft transitions from a common box to a trapezoid as it junctions with the yoke (which is the Auxetic area, don’t forget)

The 24mm beam (actually 22, 24.4, 23.3) is a solid choice for advancing players offering just the right amount of stiffness for a little extra “punch”.

We believe the recoil weight could be higher and that is easily accomplished when wanted.  

 

The MP and Pro demo’s are ready for your evaluation! These are very popular demo’s!
ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Boom MP 2022
Reference Tension55 lbs - 24.9 kg
String
Tecnifibre BiPhase 124
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC55.0
ASPS, FlexFour64.0
Racquet Flex, RDC62 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour42.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness344.8 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams320
Weight, Ounces11.29

Balance, mm327
Balance, Inch12.87
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width9.83
Head Length12.84
Head Area, cm2639.4
Head Area, Sq. Inch99.1
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.645
Main String Grid7.61
Cross String Grid10.68
Density (% of head filled with string).774
Average Cross String Space.475
Average Main String Space.562
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.7
First Moment, Nm.807
Polar Moment325
Torsional Stability13
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2312
Swing Weight, Ounces11.01
Swing Weight Calculated342.2
Power, RDC45
Control, RDC56
Manueverability, RDC79
Power, Calculated 1936.2
Head Points5.04
Head Weight, %47.7%
Center of Percussion20.80
Dwell Time, ms8.58
Efective Stiffness - lbs29.1
K, Lb/In176.26
Recoil Weight149.42
Twist Weight231.14
End Weight 127.9
Tip Weight 191.8
9 O'Clock96.5
3 O'Clock96.1
Butt Cap126.8

 

Head Prestige MP 2021 Series

OK, here comes another racquet review!

You know our reviews are “numbers” based, not hitter based because we just like numbers! ¬†Hitters are Important but to get the most meaningful data from a racquet requires numbers. ¬†These numbers can then be applied to the feedback of the hitter.

The new Head Prestige MP 2021 is a 99 square inch head with the 18×19 string pattern so common in player style racquets. ¬†This combination may “scare off” some users but that would be a mistake in our opinion.

As you would expect this racquet is a thin box beam box design which creates an in plane stiffness of 384.6 pounds, which can be used to create a very friendly string bed stiffness. ¬†Take a look at the “effective stiffness” and you will see what we mean!

In addition to the nice in plane stiffness this racquet uses Head’s new Auxetic construction in the throat which is designed for comfort and control from each hit by allowing the throat to “expand and contract” a little.

The bright red color of last years Prestige series has been replaced with a “matt” graphite transitioning into the classic Prestige maroon around the head of the racquet making this a classic in its own right!

 

 

The Prestige series just keeps getting better!

 

You can demo this racquet now!

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Prestige MP 2021
Reference Tension55 lbs - 24.9 kg
String
Victrex 7718 (PEEK)
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC54
ASPS, FlexFour66.0
Racquet Flex, RDC63 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour41.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness384.6 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams332
Weight, Ounces11.71

Balance, mm327
Balance, Inch12.87
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width9.551
Head Length13.13
Head Area, cm2635.4
Head Area, Sq. Inch98.5
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.689
Main String Grid8.00
Cross String Grid10.10
Density (% of head filled with string).727
Average Cross String Space.529
Average Main String Space.396
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.7
First Moment, Nm.837
Polar Moment343
Torsional Stability17
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2326
Swing Weight, Ounces11.50
Swing Weight Calculated355.0
Power, RDC49
Control, RDC52
Manueverability, RDC69
Power, Calculated 2042.9
Head Points5.04
Head Weight, %47.7%
Center of Percussion21.016
Dwell Time, ms8.66
Efective Stiffness - lbs29.1
K, Lb/In173.08
Recoil Weight157.3
Twist Weight227.24
End Weight 133.1
Tip Weight 200.8
9 O'Clock101.3
3 O'Clock98.9
Butt Cap131.3

 

What Can Pictures Tell Us About String?

It is said that “a picture is worth a thousand words,” which may be true as long as the picture tells a story.

This story is about natural gut string, and the pictures will show what we can achieve, informationally, with our testing equipment. The two (2) strings are Babolat VS Touch 17 and Luxilon Natural Gut 125.

Both are awesome products, and we use a lot of both of them, but for different reasons, we may be able to understand by the pictures!

Our Questron software scales the images to suit the data so the graphs will not be the same size.

Babolat VS Touch 17

Our testing loads the string from 0 pounds force to 50 pounds and back to zero then up to 50 pounds three (3) times. ¬†This is the “stress/strain” curve. ¬†Fifty (50) pounds is arbitrary and because we are using the same methodology for all string materials it is a good number. ¬†The closer these lines are together the better.

The farther it takes to reach 50 pounds the “higher elongation” the string is. ¬†In this case it is about 44mm.

The important property of this string is the linearity! ¬†That is the “straightness” of the line from beginning to end. ¬†This indicates predictability, stability, and consistency.

This picture tells us the tensile strength and the knot strength.  In this case the knot strength is 52.3 pounds and takes a stretch to very close to 60mm before failure.

Luxilon Natural Gut 125

What is, probably, the first thing you notice about this “picture”? Could it be the squiggly lines? What could be causing this?

We believe it is the “break-in period” players associate with Luxilon gut! We have heard it from the players but have not been able to “see” it! It could be the bonding agents realigning as the load is applied.

You will notice a couple of things: the similarity of the “stress/strain” curve and the displacement to “knot strength” of the two strings. This string will feel a little less “soft” than the Babolat VS Touch 17. The linearity is quite good up to failure.

So, based on these pictures, could you make a recommendation? If so, let us hear them!

And The Winner Is…

If you know anything about Tecnifibre yo know they make some of the best multifilament strings in the business!

 

The winner is Tecnifibre MultiFeel 17!

This string, MultiFeel, is a very “soft” polyurethane bonded construction that offers playability and a good value!

Tecnifibre MultiFeel !7 Gauge

This graph shows the high elongation and nice elasticity of this string.  The fairly linear slope up to failure would indicate some consistency of shot all the way up to breakage!

The knot strength is pretty good for a thin multifilament and we can say from experience that the know is going to be fine when property “tightened” and large enough to not slip bak into the grommet barrel.

If you are considering a multifilament this would be a good one to try!

Celebrity Visitors!

The World Headquarters of Racquet Quest, LLC was happy to welcome Randy St. Pierre and Henry Hamels for a visit!

Randy is a member of the Dunlop Stringing Team and is from the UK and Henry is the principal of String MD in Florida! ¬†Randy has been stringing racquets for quite a while and is always a source of good information…and he bought lunch!

Randy & Henry

Randy lives in a beautiful part of England so we are all invited to his house when the weather is better…is that right Randy?

Randy remembers stringing for a young player named Emma at a tournament in Nottingham when young Emma was in the 300’s ¬†world wide! ¬†Look at her now! ¬†Was it Randy or something else? ¬†I wonder!

Anyway it was great fun having these guys here and they are welcome anytime as are all of you reading this!

 

And the winner is…Head FXP 17

 

Head FXP is a string that seems to be largely overlooked and I am surprised after seeing the results of the installation and testing!

String NameCategoryGaugeUltimate Tensile Strength/LbsKnot Strength/LbsCountry of Origin
Head FXPMultifilament - Nylon17165.993.4Japan

Both the tensile strength and knot strength are exceptional and the graph shows that this string is very “elastic” which is a good thing for tennis racquet string but sometimes just not considered.

Head FXP 17

The area under the solid red lines is considered a stress-strain curve and indicates the “elasticity” of string by how close the lines fit from 0 to 50 three (3) times. ¬†A perfectly elastic material would be one line even though it went through three (3) cycles. ¬†What you see here is quite good and one of the reasons it is the winner!

And the winner is…overview

Racquet Quest is going to add a “winner” of the week to our website as a way to develop a fun way to look at string!

Each week we will select a string that has exhibited outstanding properties from one of five (5) major categories:

    • Synthetic Gut
    • Mulit-filamanet
           Nylon
           PEEK
    • Natural gut
    • PEEK Monofilament
    • Polyester Monofilament

The winning string must have been installed in the most recent week either in a client or demo racquet.

We will include as much information as possible including graphs and the country of origin.

We will try to post “And the Winner is…” on Friday so take look!

Our Favorite String

A frequently asked question by our clients at the World Headquarters of Racquet Quest, LLC is “what is your favorite string?”

I am going to tell you what it is, and tell you why it is, and why, I believe, it should be your favorite string as well!

VS Team v VS Team

It should come as no surprise that natural gut is our favorite string! ¬†Well, of course, you say! ¬†It is probably everyones favorite but it is way too expensive for most recreational players! ¬†You are correct that natural gut is everyones “favorite” string, however, you may not be correct about it being too “expensive” for recreational players!

What follows is predicated on the belief that “performance” is the primary factor in selecting a string.

On the positive side:

  • Natural gut plays better longer than any other material.
  • Natural gut is more stable than most string materials.
  • Natural gut is more forgiving (comfort) than most other materials.
  • Natural gut is more eco-friendly than other materials.
  • Natural gut is a good hybrid component.

On the not so positive side:

  • Natural gut is expensive @ $70.00 to $75.00 (installed).
  • Natural gut is more expensive than other materials.
    • Making natural gut string is very labor intensive.
    • Making high quality natural gut is limited to a “few” major manufacturers.
  • Natural gut can be affected by moisture.

And, how do you quantify “plays better”, anyway? ¬†Some players are fine with string that has long since offered any performance! ¬†Some strings have a “play”life of a couple of hours! ¬†So, the player must decide on what is important.

But, if you ask us, natural gut is our favorite string!

 

 

String Evaluation Program

Racquet Quest, LLC has for years been doing the extensive evaluation of racquets and string for the benefit of our client’s customization requirements.

Now we are making this evaluation “program” available to anyone that wants to dig deeper into the workings of the string in the racquet!

This is serious stuff and requires significant resources but it is worth it!

Please contact us of you would like to take advantage of our evaluation program!

Take a look at the String Evaluation Program!

 

 

Prince Vortex 300

The new Prince Vortex design is a new offering of an older string pattern with 14 main strings and 21 cross strings in a variable taper beam…whew! ¬†You can see by the throat design that the main strings are longer that a conventional throat design. ¬†The longer the main strings the more energy they can return…sort of, and in some cases!

Vortex 300

The beam starts at the grip with a strong 25mm then tapers into a 23mm at the throat and then back to 25mm at the tip.  Do not let the beam dimensions fool you!  The RDC flex of 59 after stringing is quite acceptable for most every player style.

We have been taking coefficient of friction (COF) data for years ¬†but have not included it this review format, until now. ¬†The 14×21 string pattern is unique enough that it is worth including. ¬†You will see the numbers on the review specs so we won’t go into them now, however the numbers are interesting.

The 14 main strings contribute to a very “open” area right about where most extreme “spin” shots are hit according to our data of string failure positions.

The frame geometry is sort of “Aero” like. ¬†The shaft is trapezoidal that transitions into a “reverse” trapezoid around the head. ¬†It makes the racquet look stiffer than it is!

Take a look at the specs then pick up a demo to see what the numbers mean to you!

ManufacturerPrince
Racquet ModelPrince Vortex 300
Reference Tension56 lbs - 25.4kg
String
Victrex 7718
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC45
ASPS, FlexFour58.5
Racquet Flex, RDC59 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour40.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness526.3 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams322
Weight, Ounces11.36
Balance, mm320
Balance, Inch12.60
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width9.94
Head Length12.94
Head Area, cm2652
Head Area, Sq. Inch101.1
Number of Main Strings14
Number of Cross Strings21
Ratio Cross/Mains.512
Main String Grid7.30
Cross String Grid9.50
Density (% of head filled with string).686
Average Cross String Space.452
Average Main String Space.521
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT32
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in176.98
First Moment, Nm.790
Polar Moment336
Torsional Stability17
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2319
Swing Weight, Ounces11.25
Swing Weight Calculated329.7
Power, RDC47
Control, RDC52
Manueverability, RDC74
Power, Calculated 1921.1
Head Points7.24
Head Weight, %46.6
Center of Percussion21.7
Dwell Time, ms9.48
Efective Stiffness - lbs30.2
K, Lb/In144.23
Recoil Weight165.41
Twist Weight237.56
End Weight 134.5
Tip Weight 189.0
9 O'Clock96.2
3 O'Clock96.1
Butt Cap131.4
Coefficient of Friction: M.400
Coefficient of Friction: X.262

 

 

Prince RipStick 300

I am not saying the is not a serious tennis racquet but the first descriptor that come to mind is “fun”! And who does not want to have a little fun while playing tennis, huh?

RipStick 300


This is one of the remaining racquets with the “O” Port technology which is very large string openings instead of small grommet holes. The design allows for much more string movement and the 16×18 string bed helps! ¬†The “O” Ports create an effective head size of 105 in a racquet that measures 100 square inches.

But, just look at those colors!  I think they are awesome!

This is a constant taper beam starting at 22.5mm going up to 27mm so if you are “thin beam” person you may hesitate to hit with this racquet, but we think you may be missing out!

If you just look at the racquet you may think it to be quite stiff.  That is not the case!  With an RDC stiffness of 62 after stringing we arrive at an effective stiffness of 30.2 with this string setup.  Not bad!

Take a look at the specs then come get the demo and see what all these numbers mean to you!

ManufacturerPrince
Racquet ModelPrince RipStick 300
Reference Tension60 lbs - 27.2kg
String
Prince Premier 16
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC59
ASPS, FlexFour64.5
Racquet Flex, RDC62 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour46.6
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness504.2 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams328
Weight, Ounces11.57
Balance, mm323
Balance, Inch12.72
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width10.00
Head Length12.87
Head Area, cm2645
Head Area, Sq. Inch100.1
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings18
Ratio Cross/Mains.694
Main String Grid7.56
Cross String Grid9.12
Density (% of head filled with string).679
Average Cross String Space.531
Average Main String Space.469
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT36
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in201.35
First Moment, Nm.814
Polar Moment337
Torsional Stability17
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2320
Swing Weight, Ounces11.29
Swing Weight Calculated342.2
Power, RDC43
Control, RDC58
Manueverability, RDC73
Power, Calculated 2095.5
Head Points6.14
Head Weight, %47.2
Center of Percussion21.2
Dwell Time, ms8.28
Efective Stiffness - lbs30.2
K, Lb/In189.10
Recoil Weight159.2
Twist Weight256.05
End Weight 134.9
Tip Weight 194.5
9 O'Clock100.8
3 O'Clock97.3
Butt Cap130.2

 

 

 

New KT Tape Products!

KT Tape is probably the most recognized gear any athlete can wear! You see it on many world-class athletes typically placed where they may be experiencing discomfort or want to reduce the possibility of such!

Racquet Quest has added three (3) new KT Tape products we believe are essential to better performance.

The new Wave:

  • Clinically proven and FDA cleared device for relief of chronic musculoskeletal pain
  • 250 hours of battery life for consecutive or intermittent use
  • Sensation-free electromagnetic pulses that are safe and effective
  • Flexible loop is easy to place
  • Water resistant, safe to wear during regular physical activity and during sweating

 

 

 

 

The new Chafe Safe:

 

  • Protects friction-prone areas from blisters & hot spots for up to 24 hours
  • Sweat & water resistant
  • Mess-free, non-sticky, & smooth application
  • No clogging of pores

 

 

 

 


The new Anti Blister tape:

  • Designed to help prevent athlete blister, chafing, and hot spot formation*
  • Ultra-durable, flexible, and breathable synthetic fabric
  • Easily conforms to skin and extremely thin to minimize friction
  • Precut 3.5‚ÄĚ strips for convenient use in most common treatment areas
  • KT Tape is proud to provide the KT PERFORMANCE + and KT RECOVERY + product lines, supporting athletes of all levels and helping them to perform at their best. Train longer, finish stronger

 

These important products contribute to Racquet Quest’s commitment to keeping our clients playing comfortably forever!

If you are new to KT Tape just click here and¬†you will go to the very comprehensive “how to” page!

 

World Headquarters Update

The World Headquarters of Racquet Quest is very happy to present the latest addition to our headquarters!

My daughter and her family that live in Columbus presented me with the iconic Columbus, Indiana “C” bike rack recently! ¬†This bike rack is something I have wanted for a while!

In case you don’t know, Columbus, Indiana is well known for the many architectural buildings and pieces by many very famous people!

Click on this link if you would like to know more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Columbus,_Indiana

World Headquarters

The bike was donated by Davids Cycle World and painted by me!  A very close inspection of the paint job should be avoided!

Anyway, we are very happy to have this addition to the World Headquarters!

Thank you!

And now for something completely different!

It is not often we get to do something completely different but this is that time!

Everyone loves to see what the very latest racquets are going to look like and how they will play but what about taking a look back, not forward!

This racquet review is going way back!  I am not sure when this racquet was made but suffice it to say it was a while ago.  I will guess that it is over sixty (60) years old.

Well, OK!  What is it?

It is a Wright & Ditson Olympic!

Wright & Ditson Olympic

This is a beautiful 68 square inch wooden racquet.  The wooden grip pallet is wrapped with a very wide piece of perforated leather, not the slender leather used today.

The racquet has no butt cap. ¬†Or didn’t have a butt cap but now it does.

Pay particular attention to the weight of this racquet, and the stiffness!

Many of the current racquets will be in the 315-gram range with an RDC flex of 55+.

When we received it the condition was not great but it was straight and worth renovating. ¬†We all know how beautiful some wooden racquets can be so let’s get to the specifications.

ManufacturerWright & Ditson
Racquet ModelWright & Ditson Olympic
Reference Tension45lbs/20.4kg
String
Head Synthethic 17
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC36
ASPS, FlexFour50
Racquet Flex, RDC12 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour27.0
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness500.0 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams401.0
Weight, Ounces14.14
Balance, mm307
Balance, Inch12.09
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width8.13
Head Length10.8
Head Area, cm2444.6
Head Area, Sq. Inch68.9
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.677
Main String Grid7.00
Cross String Grid8.30
Density (% of head filled with string).843
Average Cross String Space.415
Average Main String Space.389
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT30
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in167.8
First Moment, Nm.932
Polar Moment368
Torsional Stability9
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2359
Swing Weight, Ounces12.66
Swing Weight Calculated377.9
Power, RDC0
Control, RDC100
Manueverability, RDC47
Power, Calculated 296.9
Head Points11.02
Head Weight, %44.9%
Center of Percussion21.0
Dwell Time, ms10.6
Efective Stiffness - lbs9.0
K, Lb/In115.4
Recoil Weight189.8
Twist Weight203.8
End Weight 174.9
Tip Weight 225.0
9 O'Clock115.9
3 O'Clock115.0
Butt Cap168.9

 

In a string does color matter?

Of course color matters!  Brands have made history on color!  Prince Green, Head Orange, Babolat Blue, for racquets but what about string?

Sure, again! ¬†Luxilon Silver, Babolat Black, ¬†Solinco Green, Victrex Putty…what? ¬†Which of these monofilament strings do not have any color pigment?

If you guessed the Victrex you would be correct.  But why not?  The natural color of the polymer is probably the very strongest a string can be, however, without color they would not be at all interesting or recognizable!  The natural Victrex color is typically what we use when evaluating the string because it is visually different.

Victrex does make strings with black-pigment, but this post is about the difference pigmentation can make in a string.  In a previous post some years go we determined that color had very little affect on string properties and this evaluation shows pretty much the same result in a different format.

You can see by this graph there is very little difference between the two Volkl V-Star strings.  In fact it would be safe to say the strings are identical.

We will continue to evaluate strings with pigmentation to determine if any color does exhibit an affect on the properties.

Head Speed Pro Black

As you probably know by now Novak Djokovic plays with a version of the Head Speed but in black, not black and white! So it was only a matter of time until the all-black Speed Pro became available.

Until now we only had the black and white Speed Pro demo but now we have the black one!

This review will include the white and black version of the Speed and we will include a comparison to the Wilson Blade Pro!

These are each extraordinary racquets! ¬†You will discover subtle differences in the specifications, especially the Wilson Blade Pro being a 16×19 pattern and the Head Speed Pro, in this case, is 18×20. ¬†The geometry and frame of the 16×19 and 18×20 are the same so the numbers are meaningful!

 

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Graphene 360 + Speed Pro Black
Reference Tension54 lbs - 24.5 kg
String
Head Reflex MLT
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC56
ASPS, FlexFour66.5
Racquet Flex, RDC57 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour50.5
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness325.2 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams334
Weight, Ounces11.78

Balance, mm325
Balance, Inch12.80
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width9.618
Head Length13.10
Head Area, cm2636.1
Head Area, Sq. Inch98.6
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.662
Main String Grid7.565
Cross String Grid10.30
Density (% of head filled with string).7735
Average Cross String Space.513
Average Main String Space.413
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.7
First Moment, Nm.836
Polar Moment341
Torsional Stability15
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2326
Swing Weight, Ounces11.50
Swing Weight Calculated352.8
Power, RDC42
Control, RDC59
Manueverability, RDC69
Power, Calculated 1832.1
Head Points5.51
Head Weight, %47.0%
Center of Percussion21.016
Dwell Time, ms8.502
Efective Stiffness - lbs28.25
K, Lb/In179.49
Recoil Weight159.3
Twist Weight231.4
End Weight 134.5
Tip Weight 198.0
9 O'Clock99.0
3 O'Clock99.6
Butt Cap134.0

 

And now for the white and black version:

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Graphene 360+ Speed Pro
Reference Tension56 lbs - 25.4 kg
String
Victrex PEEK fiber Experimental 7718
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC55
ASPS, FlexFour66.5
Racquet Flex, RDC60 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour43
Weight, Grams327
Weight, Ounces11.53
Balance, mm323
Balance, Inch12.72
Length, Cm68.5
Length, Inch26.97
Head Width9.69
Head Length13.06
Head Area, cm2641.2
Head Area, Sq. Inch99.4
Beam Width, mm, Shaft, Center, Tip23, 23, 23
In Plane Stiffness, Pounds/In335.2 Lbs/In.
In Plane Stiffness, Kg/cm 152.0 Kg/cm
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings20
Ratio Cross/Mains.668
Main String Grid7.62
Cross String Grid10.37
Density (% of head filled with string).768
Average Cross String Space.513
Average Main String Space.414
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT37
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in206.94
First Moment, Nm.812
Polar Moment336
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2320
Swing Weight, Ounces11.29
Swing Weight Calculated341.2
Power, RDC45
Control, RDC57
Manueverability, RDC73
Power, Calculated 1908.2
Head Points6.14 (negative = head heavy
Head Weight, %47.2%
Center of Percussion21.2
Dwell Time, ms, No Swing8.58
Efective Stiffness - lbs28.7
K, Lb/In (SBS) RDC176.28
Recoil Weight159.71
Twist Weight229.85
End Weight 133.4
Tip Weight 192.8
9 O'Clock97.1
3 O'Clock97.5
Butt Cap131.0
This Wilson Blade Pro was not strung by Racquet Quest. The specifications are included as a comparison only…not a string recommendation.

And now for the Wilson Blade Pro:

ManufacturerWilson
Racquet ModelWilson Blade Pro
Reference Tension54 lbs - 23.6 k2
String
ALU Power Rough
Machine UsedUnknown
Static
ASPS, RDC35
ASPS, FlexFour53
Racquet Flex, RDC62 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour48
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness387.1 lbs/Inch
Weight, Grams337
Weight, Ounces11.89
Balance, mm327
Balance, Inch12.87
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width9.6
Head Length12.80
Head Area, cm2623.3
Head Area, Sq. Inch96.6
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.634
Main String Grid7.37
Cross String Grid10.40
Density (% of head filled with string).7934
Average Cross String Space.547
Average Main String Space.461
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT27
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in151.0
First Moment, Nm.850
Polar Moment358
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2342
Swing Weight, Ounces12.06
Swing Weight Calculated360.35
Power, RDC55
Control, RDC42
Manueverability, RDC59
Power, Calculated 2069.0
Head Points5.04
Head Weight, %47.07
Center of Percussion21.535
Dwell Time, ms10.755
Efective Stiffness - lbs22.37
K, Lb/In112.18
Recoil Weight170.8
Twist Weight234.0
End Weight 135.0
Tip Weight 202.9
9 O'Clock100.8
3 O'Clock103.7
Butt Cap132.2

Pick Your Prestige!

Racquet Quest specializes in high performance tennis racquets and they don’t get more high performance than the Head Prestige models!

We recognize the attachment players have to racquets so we keep a good supply of Head Prestige racquets of all models and even a year or two of prior models.

Here is what is currently available:

 

NameMaterialModelHead SizeGrip SizeString PatternQuantity
PrestigeGraphene XTRev Pro93416x191
PrestigeGraphene XTRev Pro93316x192
PrestigeGraphene XTMP98418x201
PrestigeGraphene XTMP98318x201
PrestigeGraphene XTPro98416x191
PrestigeGraphene XTPro983
16x192
PrestigeGraphene TouchPro95216x191
PrestigeGraphene TouchTour99318x192
Prestige Graphene TouchTour99218x191
PrestigeGraphene TouchMP95318x201

 

 

 

Still Committed to Your Racquet!

For the past few years and certainly the past year Racquet Quest has been committed to tennis racquets and yours is included!

Hopefully the days of the “mask”are over and we can resume actually talking to each other and be understood! Of course if you prefer to wear a mask that is OK, too!

Here is what is not OK!

Not caring about your tennis racquet is not OK, and by that I mean keeping it in the best possible condition. That includes string, grip, grommet sets, overgrips and general reactions of beating it against the ground or net!

We have seen five year old racquets that look brand new and five day old racquets that are in really poor shape! One of the most damaging “strokes” in tennis is the ball pickup stroke! This is not a stroke at all but a way to keep from bending over to pick up balls!

Using the racquet head to scoop up the balls is easy and cool! It is also the quick way to ruin the bumper guard which is there to protect the Racquet from normal stroke, not pick-ups!

So, what do you do about it? The next time you consider scooping up balls with the racquet consider tapping the ball to start it bouncing or simplpy use the fingers on your hand to pick up the ball…that would be good!

Looking at the Numbers and What They Mean

The following table will shed some light on the numbers we use and hopefully shed some light on what they can mean in terms of your racquet.

By using these numbers you can describe what you think needs to be different to enhance your performance!

ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Radical MP 2023
Reference Tension55 (what you tell the stingers to set the stringing machine).
This should be replaced by String Bed Stiffness (SBS)
String
MonoGut ZX Pro
Machine UsedTrue Tension Professional
Static
String Bed Stiffness - RDC53.0 Units (Babolat RDC)
String Bed Stiffness -FlexFour64.9 pounds (Flex Four)
String Bed Stiffness - SBS51.8 pounds (Racquet Quest string bed stiffness SBS Master)
String Bed Stiffness - ERT35 Kg/Cm (previously Beer's ERT1000)
Racquet Flex, Babolat RDC65 - After stringing (unstrung racquets will be slightly stiffer. Loaded from the tip)
Racquet Flex, FlexFour44.5 (Loaded from the COP)
Racquet - In Plane Stiffness379.7 lbs/Inch (stiffness across the 3 ad 9 o'clock positions of the racquet head)
Weight, Grams326
Weight, Ounces11.50
Balance, mm333
Balance, Inch13.11
Length, Cm68.57
Length, Inch27.00
Head Width9.63
Head Length12.79
Head Area, cm2623.0
Head Area, Sq. Inch96.7
Beam Height @ Grip, mm21.0 (how thick the racquet is looking at the side)
Beam Height @ Mid, mm22.5 (how thick the racquet is looking at the side)
Beam Height @ Tip20.5 (how thick the racquet is looking at the side)
Beam Width @ Grip, mm12.5 (how thick the racquet is looking at the front or face view)
Beam Width @ Throat, mm11.5 (how thick the racquet is looking at the front or face view)
Beam Width @ Mid, mm12.8 (how thick the racquet is looking at the front or face view)
Beam Width @ Tip, mm12.8 (how thick the racquet is looking at the front or face view)
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.634 ( typically the natural ratio)
Main String Grid7.18 (the distance between the two outer most main strings)
Cross String Grid9.44 (the distance between the two outer most cross strings)
Density (% of head filled with string)69.6% (how much of the head area is filled with string)
Average Cross String Space.494 (how far apart the strings are). The farther apart the quicker the wear.
Average Main String Space.449
(how far apart the strings are). The farther apart the quicker the wear.
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35 (string bed stiffness in kilos per centimeter)
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.76 (DT converted to pounds per inch)
First Moment, Nm.841 (sometimes called pickup weight)
Polar Moment347 (torsional weight)
Torsional Stability16 ( resistance to twisting on off center hits)
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2331 (the dynamic weight and the most significant property)
Swing Weight, Ounces11.68
Swing Weight Calculated361.5 (calculated from the butt end to the tip)
Power, RDC52 (property calculated by Babolat RDC)
Control, RDC49 (property calculated by Babolat RDC)
Manueverability, RDC66 (property calculated by Babolat RDC)
Power, Calculated 2101.4 (calculation based on several racquet properties)
Head Points3.15 ( a point is generally consider to be .125 inches/3.18mm)
Head Weight, %48.5%
Center of Percussion21.1 (highest COR)
Dwell Time, ms8.74 (length of time the ball is in contact with the string without a swing)
Efective Stiffness - lbs29.2 ( the calculated combined stiffness of the racquet and sting bed)
K, Lb/In169.87 (string bed stiffness in pounds/inch)
Recoil Weight156.44 (resistance to twisting about the grip)
Twist Weight226.48 (resistance to twisting about the neutral axis)
End Weight 126.0 (two scale system to calculate CG)
Tip Weight 197.7 (two scale system to calculate CG)
9 O'Clock105.1 (three scale system to assure symmetry)
3 O'Clock104.7(three scale system to assure symmetry)
Butt Cap115.6 (three scale system to assure symmetry)
COF, Main.416 (the stickiness of the string bed sliding the ball with the main strings)
COF, Cross.388(the stickiness of the string bed sliding the ball with the cross strings)

Correct Size Does Matter!

Grip size, in this case, does matter! ¬†However, for several years the largest grip size available has been a 4 ‚ÖĚ, or just 5 for short.

This is simply the circumference of the finished grip forward of the butt cap.  Of course the butt cap is of a size that will capture the butt of your hand for comfort and control.

But what happens if you need a grip size larger than 4 ‚ÖĚ? ¬†In years gone by a shrink tube was applied to the current grip pallet and the size was increased accordingly. ¬†Typically only two (2) shrink tubes could be used and even then the grip facets became “rounded”.

Lucky for us, and you of course, we can now print grip pallets in any size required!  The largest one so far is a 5 1/4 for a player in New York using a Babolat Pure Aero.

Each printed pallet is made specifically for a racquet, not just a “one size fits all” approach due to very subtle variations in size, especially the inner shaft.

Inner Shaft

In this case the pallets were longer to accommodate large hands so the length of the racquet was increased through the use of these pallets and a printed extender.

The printed pallet must fit securely and the best way to assure the fit is to have the racquet.

Any time the butt cap comes off the shaft must be filled with material to keep objects from falling into the racquet!

Pallet with Butt Cap

 

What Can String Failure Tell Us – Part Deux

In Part Un we discussed the difference between shanking (mis-hit) and friction failure.  It was obvious that the string was broken.  But what happens when it is not so obvious?

Part Deux, this part, will examine the frictional notching failure of monofilament string and how we can be prepared for it!  To further refine this discussion we will be comparing PET polyester has PEEK monofilament string.  The reason is that each material while both will notch one requires more time to reach the critical dimensional decrease that is a failure!

In almost every Racquet Quest Podcast we talk about tension v string diameter and agree that once 50% of the string diameter is notched away the string is vulnerable!  So a .050 (1.27mm) diameter string that has a tensile strength of 120 pounds at 50% notching will have 60 pounds of tensile strength remaining.

Notched v un notched string

This graph is a string that was broken during use.  The string was removed from the racquet.  The top line is the tensile strength in the area of no notching so you can see that it is pretty strong still and has stabilized due to use.  That stabilization is indicated by the very tight stress/strain grouping.

However, things go sideways when the notched area of the string is put under stress.  The string failed at a force of 63.8 pounds, or about 59% of the used tensile strength.  Not bad!

So, notching is failure-inducing but how long it takes to create the fatal notch differs with string material.  This particular set of strings had about six (6) hours of play.

In Part Trois, we will look at PEEK material under the same conditions!

 

What Can String Failure Tell Us?

Well, in the simplest terms, failure tells us it is time to have the request strung! However, there may be subtleties in string failure that can help us in our quest for tennis racquet performance.

Such as?

Is the failure shear related or tensile strength related? Was friction the major contributor to the failure? Where did the failure occur (on the racquet, not the court)? Was the failure during play or in the bag?

Shear-related failure is when the string breaks very near the racquet frame. This failure is called a mis-hit or shank! It is like cutting the string with a pair of scissors!

Shear Failure

Friction Failure

Friction failure is caused by just that, friction!  Friction is caused by the string moving on each other. That rubbing creates friction and notches the string where it will fail.

If the racquet failed during play and it is not shear-related, the tensile strength of the string was exceeded. If a string has a tensile strength of 120 pounds and the tension is 60 pounds leaving 60 pounds to be used to hit the ball. Some big hitters can generate at least that much force on a solid forehand!

The graphs show the tensile strength and relative elongation of different material.

This graph shows the tensile strength of the string to be about 115 pounds.  Given the movement of this string-on-string, the frictional notching can contribute to relatively early failure based on the hitters force.

This graph shows the tensile strength of the string to be about 155 pounds but it has to travel (stretches) further to reach that force.

So, you can see, with this information we can make better decisions when asked to suggest a string, or strings, for a client!

Players String Evaluation

For years we have requested player evaluation input to help us provide a comprehensive selection of quality tennis racquet string.

Our new Player String Evaluation form below makes it really quick and easy to give us your evaluation input.  If Racquet Quest prepared your racquet there will be two (2) labels on the inside of the racquet shaft.  One label will be your name with date, string, tension, and racquet number. The other label will be a bar code that includes the racquet number.

You can use this information when filling out the Player String Evaluation form.  Thank you for your input!

Our Mission

Which Comes First!

We all have heard the question “which comes first the chicken or the egg”? ¬†However, my question is “Which comes first the game or the string”?

I believe they happen simultaneously.  But first a quick story.

In 2005 I was attending a Head product introduction on the island of Mallorca, Spain,  Yes, that one!

The product introduction was exciting but what I am going to tell you about now was even more meaningful.

The Director of one of the top US Tennis Training organizations, at that time, was there and we were discussing teaching techniques and what he said after being in this part of Europe was “we need to start teaching our players how to hit this way!” ¬†Well, “this way” was the way of low-powered strings that were popular in Europe but not so much in the US, yet.

So, it began!  The players could not hit harder, like the Europeans, unless they used the same string material as the Europeans and that was very stiff and mostly PET polyester.

So, the idea was the “egg” and the string was the “chicken”, sort of! ¬†I guess the feeling was that “if Americans are going to compete we must use the same equipment”.

Our history confirms that almost no one plays better with stiff string and durability is suffering!

Now, I believe the professional game can go on about its way but otherwise, we need to consider changing the game by returning to a combination of comfort and playability.

Our history shows us that the “high performance” life span of many polyester strings is about 2-3 hours, or less, maybe about 10-12 games. ¬†We don’t believe this is quite long enough for most players. ¬†But, how do you quantify “performance”? ¬†It may be different things for different players.

There are many components to performance but what if it was associated with UTR data? ¬†Racquet Quest can track UTR numbers and make some determinations based on that data. ¬†If a UTR is stable or increasing it is a good bet that the performance of the player and equipment is OK. ¬†However, if the UTR is slipping it is a good indication that something is not working as it should…but what?

We have found that, in some cases, it is injury or discomfort, that is causing the slippage!  Stop it!  The following data is for a 12 month period and acquired from the UTR website.  Even small positive changes are tough!  But negative changes seem to have an enormous impact more quickly than positive changes!

For example:

PlayerRacquetStringUTR1UTR2Delta
AHead Speed PEEK12.8412.86+ .02
BBabolat Pure AeroPolyester10.919.56-1.35
CHead Radical MPAPEEK4.505.61+1.11
DWilson Pro Staff 97PEEK5.07.03+2.03
EBabolat Pure AeroPEEK3.85.64+1.84
FWilson Blade 98 Polyester10.09.41-.59
GHead Radical ProNatural Gut3.75.15+1.45

This information is provided as a small sample comparison instrument and is not intended to pry anyone away from their favorite setup!  Even if it hurts!

 

 

 

 

Bolt 100 v2

Bolt tennis racquets have been around for a few years and we have reported on them in the past, however, the new V2 of the Bolt racquet lineup is very impressive!

If you are not at all familiar with the Bolt technology it is the “Zip Strip” that makes them unique. ¬†The “Zip Strip” is a carbon fiber component that looks like a miniature tennis racquet cross-section that fits into the sides and top that actually do the “bending” during string and racquet impact!

This “bending” can mitigate harshness associated with very stiff strings or a very stiff racquet!

Arm problems are no match for the ZipStrips!

Before we look at the specifications you can visit the Bolt site for more information.

Bolt 98L, V2
ManufacturerBolt
Racquet ModelBolt 100, v2
Reference Tension57 lbs - 25.9 k
String: Main/Cross
Head Reflex
Machine UsedTrue Tension Pro
Static
ASPS, RDC56
ASPS, FlexFour64.5
Racquet Flex, RDC64 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour46
Weight, Grams313
Weight, Ounces11.06
Balance, mm337
Balance, Inch13.27
Length, Cm68.5
Length, Inch26.98
Head Width9.589
Head Length13.13
Head Area, cm2665.1
Head Area, Sq. Inch103.1
Beam Width, mm, Shaft, Center, Tip24.5, 24.5, 23.8
In Plane Stiffness, Pounds/In454 Lbs/In.
In Plane Stiffness, Kg/cm178.7 Kg/cm
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.642
Main String Grid7.37
Cross String Grid9.62
Density (% of head filled with string).688
Average Cross String Space.506
Average Main String Space.461
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT36
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in201.35
First Moment, Nm.822
Polar Moment350
Torsional Stability19
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2331
Swing Weight, Ounces11.68
Swing Weight Calculated356.6
Power, RDC48
Control, RDC53
Manueverability, RDC66
Power, Calculated 2183.7
Head Points1.42 (negative = head heavy)
Head Weight, %49.3%
Center of Percussion21.4
Dwell Time, ms, No Swing8.50
Effective Stiffness - lbs29.9
K, Lb/In (SBS) RDC179.49
Recoil Weight157.0
Twist Weight234.11
End Weight118.7
Tip Weight196.1
Total Weight314.8
9 O'Clock103.0
3 O'Clock98.9
Butt Cap110.3
Total Weight312.2

 

 

 

Friction v Tension…what wins?

We all know what friction is.  It keeps our cars from sliding around, it keeps us from slipping and in general makes movement possible!

Friction also plays an important part in the string bed of your tennis racquet.  Friction between the strings and the ball create friction which in turn creates rotation.

What are, however, some of the downsides of friction in the string bed during, and after, the stringing process?

Friction v Tension

For more detailed information and a graph showing the forces involved go to our membership site, GASP.network, but in the meantime this image will show the frictional forces at work!

This machine tension head will pull the string (blue) in the direction of the center of the racquet support structure instead of directly out the middle of the grommet.

It is obvious that this will create considerable friction and result in lower tension inside the grommet than outside the grommet.

Our equipment and technique eliminates this friction resulting in a uniform string bed.

The Extreme MP is Back!

The very popular Head Graphene 360+ Extreme MP is back in stock! This racquet is one of the best all-around racquets that we have seen in a while!  They are hard to keep in stock!

Head Graphene 360+ Extreme MP

In addition to the stock models, we also have Extreme MP for full custom racquet set up, so whatever you want! Stock or custom!

But hurry…

This racquet does not stick around long!

Looking at the Differences

 

For the past fifteen (15) years or so, most string discussion centered on polyester. By now, you know our position on polyester, so we won’t go through that again right now. What we will go through right now is the difference(s) in a polyester string!

PET, polyethylene terephthalate, is the standard “material” in the better quality polyester string, so how can there be so many different versions of the same material?

Can you say “additives”? Luxilon has made it part of their brand to use acronyms for materials in each string’s description. ALU, for example, is aluminum, Timo is titanium/molybdenum, and I don’t know what 4G is.

So let’s take a look at the differences in a couple of polyester stings. Shown here are two (2) polyester strings, Luxilon ALU Power and Volkl V-Star. You can see the difference in stiffness between them, the V-Star being “softer,” but what you can’t see is the V-Star package does not say “co-polyester” but instead Co-Polymer!

Polyester? Co-Polyester? Co-Polymer?

We know¬†“co”¬†is two or more and¬†“poly”¬†is many, so how many of anything does any material have in it? We may never know and probably shouldn’t care as long as we have the presented data.

What can we see from this graph?

  • ALU Power reaches 50 lbs quicker (stiffer)
  • ALU Power exhibits good elasticity
  • V-Star is more linear (consistency)
  • V-Star has a greater tensile strength
  • V-Star is softer (takes longer to reach 50 lbs)

How would a player know this by just looking a the package? I am not sure! Adding the word “soft” or “comfort” or “feel” may persuade a player to try the string, but what if a better decision could be made before spending the time and money?¬†

No graph or chart will take the place of proper racquet stringing and setup, but it may help provide some needed information!

Head Graphene 360+ Radical S v21

From our perspective the Radical S should be one of the most used of the Radical Series!

Head Graphene 360+ Radical S

Why? ¬†The 102 square inch head size is optimum for players looking for additional power,( and who isn’t) in a legitimate players racquet. ¬†We say “legitimate” because this racquet can be turned into any thing you want, now or in the future!

As you will see in the specifications this is not a really stiff racquet so it will be easy for many players to customize the string bed to suit current playing style with an eye toward becoming a more aggressive player, or not!

The Radical S continues with the “control pattern” and “sound grommets”. ¬†We are not totally certain what the “sound grommets” do but sound is frequency and frequency can be felt so maybe the grommets are damping out some of the higher frequencies?

Anyway, this Radical S model is a great step into the “performance” racquet arena with plenty of room to grow!

 

Head Graphene 360+ Radical S v21
ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Graphene 360+ Radical S v21
Reference Tension55 lbs - 24.9 k
String: Main/Cross
Victrex 7718
Machine UsedTT Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC55
ASPS, FlexFour61.5
Racquet Flex, RDC61 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour50
Weight, Grams296
Weight, Ounces10.44
Balance, mm333
Balance, Inch13.11
Length, Cm68.5
Length, Inch26.968
Head Width9.860
Head Length13.09
Head Area, cm2653.9
Head Area, Sq. Inch101.3
Beam Width, mm, Shaft, Center, Tip22, 25, 23
In Plane Stiffness, Pounds/In370.4 Lbs/In
In Plane Stiffness, Kg/cm66.2 Kg/cm





Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.634
Main String Grid7.30
Cross String Grid9.75
Density (% of head filled with string).703
Average Cross String Space.513
Average Main String Space.449
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.8
First Moment, Nm.764
Polar Moment320
Torsional Stability17
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2303
Swing Weight, Ounces10.69
Swing Weight Calculated328
Power, RDC42
Control, RDC60
Manueverability, RDC85
Power, Calculated 1873.1
Head Points2.99 (negative = head heavy)
Head Weight, %48.6%
Center of Percussion21.2
Dwell Time, ms, No Swing8.58
Effective Stiffness - lbs28.9
K, Lb/In (SBS) RDC176.28
Recoil Weight144.50
Twist Weight214.65
End Weight113.1
Tip Weight183.4
Total Weight296.5
9 O'Clock92.1
3 O'Clock91.8
Butt Cap112.2
Total Weight296.1

Head Graphene 360+ Radical Series Comparative Data

For 2021 there are Three (3) Radical Models!

Click Here to See Radical Series Comparison Data

Radical MP v21

A Close Look at Orange

The new, for 2021, Head Graphene 360+ Radical series is a radical step into colors that have always been the “mark” of the Radical Series but now it has gone even further into radicalism!

We think that is a good thing!  Why mess around with just a little orange when you can go all out!

It is impossible to see the vibrancy of this orange without holding it in your hand!  We invite to to hold one in your hand and even hit with it!

The Radical MP has been the most popular model over the years.  This model has all the attributes of the Pro without the added weight, (which can be added later if needed)!

The thin beam carries over to the MP and Pro while the S has a slightly wider beam.

The S model fits the very necessary range of 102 square inch racquets because Head has, correctly, reduced the number of head sizes per model.  The Speed series has the 100 square inch head size very well covered.

You will see all the specifications on each individual review that will be posted shortly.

 

 

 

Head Graphene 360+ Radical Pro

Head Graphene 360+ Radical S

Head Graphene 360+ Radical Pro v21

As you would expect the Radical Pro is the heaviest of the Radical Series, but only by a few grams! ¬†What! ¬†When we talk about grams to some players it might as well be angstroms or something like that. ¬†What the heck is a gram? ¬†For many in the US market is still “Talk to me in ounces, please!”

OK, there are 454 grams in a pound and 16 ounces in a pound.  If I said a racquet weighs 285 grams what would you think?  Or, if I said the racquet weighs 10 ounces which sounds better if you are weight averse?

A cup of coffee weighs over 500 grams!

OK, the Radical Pro weighs 13 grams more than the Radical MP so how many ounces is that?

Enough of this stuff!  However, it is important to know what weight is and how it can be a significant factor in your playing.  Weight is your friend!

As you will see in the following specifications a lot depends on how the weight is distributed throughout the racquet.

Head Graphene 360+ Radical Pro

Here is a little hint; take a look at the swing weight of the MP and the Pro and tell me what you see.

The Radical Pro has the “sound grommets’ and the “control pattern” for those concerned with string spacing, and that should be many of you. ¬†String spacing can have a profound affect on durability and playability.

The enlarged circle was intended to show the elongated grommets which allow the string to move and effectively be a little longer meaning more energy return.

Head Graphene 360+ Radical Pro v21
ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Graphene 360+ Radical Pro v21
Reference Tension55 lbs - 24.9 k
String: Main/Cross
Victrex 7718
Machine UsedTT Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC54
ASPS, FlexFour63.5
Racquet Flex, RDC63 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour53
Weight, Grams328
Weight, Ounces11.57
Balance, mm321
Balance, Inch12.64
Length, Cm68.5
Length, Inch26.968
Head Width9.627
Head Length12.80
Head Area, cm2624.3
Head Area, Sq. Inch96.8
Beam Width, mm, Shaft, Center, Tip20, 23, 21
In Plane Stiffness, Pounds/In400.0 Lbs/In.
In Plane Stiffness, Kg/cm71.5 Kg/cm

Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.633
Main String Grid7.25
Cross String Grid9.40
Density (% of head filled with string).688
Average Cross String Space.490
Average Main String Space.445
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.8
First Moment, Nm.808
Polar Moment324
Torsional Stability14
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2310
Swing Weight, Ounces10.93
Swing Weight Calculated338
Power, RDC47
Control, RDC54
Manueverability, RDC80
Power, Calculated 1889.7
Head Points6.77 (negative = head heavy)
Head Weight, %46.9%
Center of Percussion20.8
Dwell Time, ms, No Swing8.66
Effective Stiffness - lbs29.1
K, Lb/In (SBS) RDC173.06
Recoil Weight152.11
Twist Weight227.78
End Weight136.1
Tip Weight191.5
Total Weight327.6
9 O'Clock98.8
3 O'Clock97.5
Butt Cap131.3
Total Weight327.6

Head Graphene 360+ Radical MP v21

Well, this is one way to get 2021 of to a great start!  This eye popping Radical will certainly add excitement to your life!

This is truly orange with capitol O!  You simply need to see this racquet to really appreciate the color.

Radical MP v21

But, color aside, this racquet continues the Radical silo of aggressive racquets for the aggressive player, or those that want to be!

This review is the MP which has been one of the most popular models over the years and I am happy to say they have not messed it up as is so often the case when introducing new products!  This is a real Radical racquet!

A couple of things really stand out.  First the string pattern is more dense in the center of the racquet by a small amount which allows for a more open pattern at the periphery for more comfort.

The top eight (8) grommets are on a separate insert and they are¬†“straight” instead of radial.

The addition of “sound grommets” is intended to enhance power via greater string movement. and optimize sound and vibrations.

And the “in plane” stiffness is a little lower meaning the string bed stiffness may be slightly less at the same reference tension, also contributing to comfort.

If you are looking for a high performance tennis racquet that has room for some weight as you require it, this is the one.  If you already need more weight that will be the Radical Pro that will be reviewed next.

 

Head Graphene 360+ Radical MP V21
ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Graphene 360+ Radical MP V21
Reference Tension55 lbs - 24.9 k
String: Main/Cross
Victrex 7718
Machine UsedTT Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC55
ASPS, FlexFour67
Racquet Flex, RDC63 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour50
Weight, Grams315
Weight, Ounces11.11
Balance, mm330
Balance, Inch12.99
Length, Cm68.5
Length, Inch26.968
Head Width9.625
Head Length12.81
Head Area, cm2624.7
Head Area, Sq. Inch96.8
Beam Width, mm, Shaft, Center, Tip20, 23, 21
In Plane Stiffness, Pounds/In382.2 Lbs/In.
In Plane Stiffness, Kg/cm68.3 Kg/cm

Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.633
Main String Grid7.13
Cross String Grid9.31
Density (% of head filled with string).677
Average Cross String Space.484
Average Main String Space.445
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.8
First Moment, Nm.803
Polar Moment330
Torsional Stability17
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2313
Swing Weight, Ounces11.04
Swing Weight Calculated343
Power, RDC46
Control, RDC55
Manueverability, RDC78
Power, Calculated 1909.3
Head Points3.94 (negative = head heavy)
Head Weight, %48.2%
Center of Percussion20.9
Dwell Time, ms, No Swing8.58
Effective Stiffness - lbs29.4
K, Lb/In (SBS) RDC176.28
Recoil Weight148.6
Twist Weight218.8
End Weight125.1
Tip Weight190.7
Total Weight329.2
9 O'Clock96.8
3 O'Clock96.7
Butt Cap120.0
Total Weight313.5

 

Questron Update!

Questron has been operational at the World Headquarters of Racquet Quest for a few weeks and it is time to acknowledge the benefit of having Questron and the ones that made it possible!

Dr, Rich Zarda and Shenghong Zhang are responsible for actually getting it done!  Dr. Zarda was instrumental in determining what need to be tested and Shane actually did the assembly and programming of the UI!  An extraordinary effort by both!

Our good friend JC Carpentier at Tennis machines in St. Louis pitched in with the perfect string connection points which make Questron function in a way that does not stress the string at the connection points.  We want the string to fail (break) in the middle.  Thank you, JC!

So, all I have to do is insert the test string and watch!  The image below is a graph recorded for each string that is tested, and two (2) strings can be overlayed to see the difference between them.

This graph was just pulled at random so you can see the output.

This information is incredibly helpful and will become even more helpful as the database grows.

My sincere thank you to everyone that got this done!

 

Connector

A Rarity …Continued

It is fun to have these fairly rare racquets to work on and get back into playing condition!  We will report on each of them as we go through the setup procedure, and note any differences that we find.

We will try to compare some of the specifications to current or “recently current” racquets to see how far we have come…or not!

A few things stand out right away:

  • The racquet is nearly 28 inches long (71.1cm)
  • The racquet is very flexible in (RDC48) and out (285.7) of plane
  • The racquet has a straight thin (21mm) beam
  • The racquet is (was) made in Austria

Head Radical Tour OS - Austria
ManufacturerHead
Racquet ModelHead Radical Tour OS - Austria
Reference Tension58 lbs - 26.3 k
String: Main/Cross
Polyester
Machine UsedTT Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC64
ASPS, FlexFour63
Racquet Flex, RDC48 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour44
Weight, Grams352
Weight, Ounces12.42
Balance, mm329
Balance, Inch12.95
Length, Cm71.1
Length, Inch27.992
Head Width10.23
Head Length13.43
Head Area, cm2695.9
Head Area, Sq. Inch107.9
Beam Width, mm, Shaft, Center, Tip21, 21, 21
In Plane Stiffness, Pounds/In285.7 Lbs/In.
In Plane Stiffness, Kg/cm51.1 Kg/cm
Number of Main Strings18
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.721
Main String Grid7.81
Cross String Grid10.12
Density (% of head filled with string).733
Average Cross String Space.533
Average Main String Space.434
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT37
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in206.94
First Moment, Nm.894
Polar Moment389
Torsional Stability20
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2369
Swing Weight, Ounces13.03
Swing Weight Calculated381
Power, RDC36
Control, RDC66
Manueverability, RDC41
Power, Calculated 2063.3
Head Points8.35 (negative = head heavy)
Head Weight, %46.3%
Center of Percussion22.0
Dwell Time, ms, No Swing7.96
Effective Stiffness - lbs27.4
K, Lb/In (SBS) RDC205.13
Recoil Weight186.9
Twist Weight273.6
End Weight139.3
Tip Weight213.3
Total Weight352.6
9 O'Clock106.3
3 O'Clock106.0
Butt Cap140.7
Total Weight353

 

 

Consistency. What Does It Look Like?

Consistency!

Consistency is a component of almost every successful thing we do each day!

But, what does it look like? Well since this is a tennis centric post it will look like this:

What you are looking at is identical racquets, identical string, identical failure location!

If you find the very end of each string you will see how consistent this failure location is.

This string is a high elongation material so will notice that the ends of the broken strings are very far apart.

This is a good thing since it (elongation) contributes to comfort and power when hitting the ball.

This consistency may be why this player has a UTR of 13.3!

This failure location indicates the player is striking the ball with consistency!  That many explain the UTR of 13.3!

What else does this failure location show us?

  • Most impacts are not in the center of the racquet.
  • The string spacing in this area is a little more “open” which may “catch” the ball and contribute to rotation.
  • There are more strings for the ball to “roll” over before leaving the racquet which may contribute to rotation.

Consistency is important in everything we do. ¬†Visualize it like the string bed of this racquet and try to hit the same spot each time you do something…anything!

 

See What We are Talking About?

If you have been listening to the Racquet Quest Podcast you know we have talked about what to NOT accept when you pick up your newly strung racquet.

We know it is hard to visualize sometimes so these pictures are posted to give you a visual aid!  This is the very same string!  One could conclude from these images that the person responsible for these knots has not had any training at all.  It makes you wonder how good the rest of the string job is!

Bad Knot

In the interest of improving all stringing, please do not accept this kind of work.  

The image below shows the “dreaded” crossover! ¬†This is not only a potential string damaging error it indicates a lack of skill, or understanding, of doing a good job!

Of course, mistakes do happen but it is the responsibility of the stringer, in this case, to correct the mistake before the client comes to collect their racquet!

Be Prepared!

Be Prepared!

It sure sounds simple but is it?  Not really!  When talking about tennis preparedness that means having enough racquets ready for the tournament,  organizing training sessions, plenty of shirts, shoes, and socks, of course!

But, what’s missing?

Your string is missing! ¬†Sure, you have done a great job of getting your racquets ready but I don’t see several sets of the string you use in the bag! ¬†Why not? ¬†You may believe they will have it at the tournament site, and, if you are using a commodity string, you may be right!

But what if you’re using a high performance string that is set up for your playing style?

  1. Take a few sets of your preferred string with you.  I prefer sets over reels but that is up to you.
  2. Tell the stringer exactly what you want.  That means knowing what you want so be prepared!
  3. Request that your racquet be strung using two (2) pieces of string and the cross strings be started at the top of the racquet. ¬†No exceptions! ¬†No ATW’s, No natural one-piece, simply two pieces top to bottom!

Know how to identify the correct stringing procedure!

Know how to identify the correct stringing procedure and don’t accept anything that is not up to your standards!

Most qualified stingers will appreciate your input and do the proper job for you!

Today a racquet came in that was strung at a tournament that missed the mark!  One-piece ATW, sloppy knots, distorted head shape, and a string that is not used by the player!

That is why we are posting this… “Be Prepared”

 

What’s in a Name!

In this particular case, it is the name “Roger Federer” and the racquet that carries his name, or just about!

When you hear about the Wilson Pro Staff 97 his name comes to mind as well as the thought “I can’t possibly play with his racquet”. ¬†Well, maybe not but there is really good news!

You don’t have to play with “his” racquet to get the benefits of the Pro Staff concept!

The Wilson Pro Staff 97, V13, is that racquet you have been looking for if you want:

  1. The really good overall weight of 339 grams (11.9 ounces)
  2. The very easy to handle swing weight of 314 (11.1 ounces)
  3. A reasonable stiffness of 64 RDC

Only the sharpest of eyes will notice the subtle differences between this racquet and that RF97 Autograph.

This Pro Staff returns to the classic Pro Staff accent colors of red and yellow. ¬†The red butt cap is a small concession to the lighter racquet with it’s more hand-friendly smooth edges.

We are certain you know a lot about the Pro Staff series so look at the specifications then try the demo!

Wilson Pro Staff 97, V13
ManufacturerWilson
Racquet ModelWilson Pro Staff 97, V13
Reference Tension55 lbs - 24.9 k
String: Main/Cross
MonoGut ZX Pro
Machine UsedTT Professional
Static
ASPS, RDC51
ASPS, FlexFour61
Racquet Flex, RDC64 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour49
Weight, Grams339
Weight, Ounces11.96
Balance, mm317
Balance, Inch12.48
Length, Cm68.5
Length, Inch26.968
Head Width9.625
Head Length12.77
Head Area, cm2622.9
Head Area, Sq. Inch96.5
Beam Width, mm, Shaft, Center, Tip22, 22, 22
In Plane Stiffness, Pounds/In468 Lbs/In.
In Plane Stiffness, Kg/cm212 Kg/cm
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.635
Main String Grid7.40
Cross String Grid10.51
Density (% of head filled with string).779
Average Cross String Space.546
Average Main String Space.453
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT35
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in195.8
First Moment, Nm.821
Polar Moment330
Torsional Stability16
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2314
Swing Weight, Ounces11.08
Swing Weight Calculated340.7
Power, RDC51
Control, RDC49
Manueverability, RDC77
Power, Calculated 1940.2
Head Points8.03 (negative = head heavy)
Head Weight, %46.3%
Center of Percussion20.7
Dwell Time, ms, No Swing8.91
Effective Stiffness - lbs28.4
K, Lb/In (SBS) RDC163.46
Recoil Weight157.6
Twist Weight235.6
End Weight144.5
Tip Weight194.3
Total Weight338.8
9 O'Clock97.6
3 O'Clock98.4
Butt Cap141.6
Total Weight337.6

Let’s Get Serious!

If you listen to the Racquet Quest podcasts you will recognize this statement!

So, why are we posting it on the website if it is already a podcast? ¬†Because it is serious! A racquet came in today that reminded me of why we started GASP! ¬†The stringing is so awful that I can’t keep myself from writing this!

The owner of the racquet does not remember at which tournament it was strung otherwise we could contact them and offer some suggestions!

Why is this racquet so bad?

  • Inconsistent tension across the string bed
    • The accuracy index is 65!
  • Virtually no tension in the top cross string…because
    • The racquet was strung from the bottom up plus the poor knot
  • Stringing of the crosses started at the bottom (starting X at the top is highly recommended)
  • Tie offs on the wrong holes
    • 8M is better
  • Cross over at the lower side
    • Probably due to the wrong tie off
  • One-piece format
    • Inconsistent string tension
  • Bad tie off knots

Take a look at these images and promise me that you will never pay for a stringing that has these errors!

Why is it so hard to do a better job when stringing a tennis racquet?  In this case, it appears the stringer has no training.  There are errors no competent stringer would make!  But, until players refuse to accept this shoddy work it will continue!

Why “demo” a Racquet?

We have had this discussion before, but it needs repeating periodically!

Why? Because players are not, in some cases, getting what they want but thought they were. And whose fault, or oversight, is that? The racquet dealer, the player, advertising, or just bad luck?

The first order of business is defining what you are looking for in a new racquet!

I say it is the “demo” process in general! ¬†As we have discussed before the demo racquet your receive from online or even a local store is probably not set up for you! ¬†So you are “demoing” something that may not be even close to what you want or need! ¬†This can be costly!

Probably more costly than demoing a racquet that is set up for you! ¬†It will cost at least one stringing of the string of your choice…your choice, not anyone else’s choice! ¬†The tension will be what you want, not anyone else. ¬†The weight and swing weight will be set up for you, not anyone else…so you see where this is going! ¬†Spending $50.00 may save you $100’s if a “poor” selection is made!

Hit with your demo racquet at least three (3 sessions!

After you have had the demo racquet set up for you it is important that you try it as many times as possible, but at least three (3) sessions.

The objective of a demo program is to get the correct racquet for you so take advantage of the “set up” opportunity!

 

 

Bolt 98L

The Bolt Racquet Series is back and in a very good way!

In case you don’t remember the Bolt racquets incorporate a patented Zip Strip that sits between the racquet and the string that mitigates the stiffness of the string bed somewhat.

I mention this because the In-Plane stiffness number you will see in the review shows a single number, and in fact for testing devices that number will be nearly the same with and without the Zip Strip interaction.

The Zip Strip will produce an “effective” hitting area larger than the measured racquet head size.

https://www.boltadvance.com

Bolt 98L, V2
ManufacturerBolt
Racquet ModelBolt 98L, V2
Reference Tension55 lbs - 24.9 k
String: Main/Cross
Head Lynx/Head Reflex
Machine UsedBabolat Racket Station
Static
ASPS, RDC60
ASPS, FlexFour67.5
Racquet Flex, RDC61 - After stringing
Racquet Flex, FlexFour36
Weight, Grams318.2
Weight, Ounces11.22
Balance, mm333
Balance, Inch13.11
Length, Cm68.6
Length, Inch27.008
Head Width9.581
Head Length12.75
Head Area, cm2618.7
Head Area, Sq. Inch95.94
Beam Width, mm, Shaft, Center, Tip23.5, 22.7, 22.2
In Plane Stiffness, Pounds/In454 Lbs/In.
In Plane Stiffness, Kg/cm178.7 Kg/cm
Number of Main Strings16
Number of Cross Strings19
Ratio Cross/Mains.654
Main String Grid7.312
Cross String Grid9.562
Density (% of head filled with string).644
Average Cross String Space.481
Average Main String Space.446
Dynamic
Dynamic Tension, Kp, ERT38
Dynamic Tension, Lbs/in212.54
First Moment, Nm.823
Polar Moment355
Torsional Stability18
Swing Weight, Kg/cm2337
Swing Weight, Ounces11.89
Swing Weight Calculated353.7
Power, RDC48
Control, RDC52
Manueverability, RDC62
Power, Calculated 2024.7
Head Points3.15 (negative = head heavy)
Head Weight, %48.5%
Center of Percussion21.8
Dwell Time, ms, No Swing8.21
Effective Stiffness - lbs24.4
K, Lb/In (SBS) RDC192.31
Recoil Weight166.19
Twist Weight237.83
End Weight124.1
Tip Weight195.9
Total Weight332.3
9 O'Clock96.0
3 O'Clock99.8
Butt Cap117.9
Total Weight318.2

 

What’s New?

We have had a “sneak peek” at some new tennis racquet models that will be arriving early in 2021! ¬†Typically, we can’t divulge a lot of the details yet but suffice it to say these are exciting models!

But let’s back up a minute and talk about new racquets that are here, or should be here, or will be here soon! ¬†The new Wilson Pro Staff series had a delivery date of September 28, 2020. ¬†They are way behind! ¬†If you are waiting for a new Pro Staff…we are sorry! ¬†Who knows what happened, but it is not good when the expected deliveries are not met!

Do you think that Wilson going “direct” has anything to do with this shipping delay?

The new Pro Staff RF 97 Autograph will change only to the Pro Staff colors of red and yellow stripes; the Pro Staff RF 97 will get a new grip pallet and butt cap setup that is intended to be easier on the hand.

The new Tecnifibre RS Series offers some interesting geometric concepts that continue their push for more player traction.

The new Head Graphene 360+ Radical Series retains the classic Radical Orange, but this one is “in your face orange”! ¬†Awesome! ¬†A cool gray shaft and grip temper this orange!

The Radical MP that we have seen has a few changes in shape and dimensions, and in fact, it is a different racquet than the past years. ¬†The head shape is more “round” by a slight amount, and the beam cross-section is different. ¬†The beam height is slightly less than the previous version, but the stiffness remains nearly the same. ¬†The shape of the “yoke” section is a little deeper and slightly wider at the junction of the head.

The new Radical has a “slicker” aerodynamic grommet system, for, no doubt, greater head speed to go with the “spin” friendly grommets!

And, the Radical Series has been scaled back to three (3) models!  The Radical Pro, the Radical MP, and the Radical S.  The Radical S is 102 square inches and the Pro and MP are 98 square inches.

The Head Graphene 360+Gravity has been a top seller and therefore is only getting a “cosmetic” make-over! ¬†The Hot Lava and Teal are being replaced by very interesting blue and yellow graphics! ¬†They look really good!

The Head Graphene 360+ Speed is staying the same but will add a black edition to the mix! ¬†It seems Novak likes black better than black and white so there will be a “black” ¬†in early 2021!

Don’t forget the Head Instinct “Effortless Power” series! ¬†It continues in a new color scheme, still blue and blue but in a more Head consistent pattern.

This week we will be getting the new demo racquets setup for your evaluation…if all goes well!

It is reassuring to know even in this time of uncertainty that racquet companies continue to produce great products that can, and will, help many players stay in the game!

 

The “Questron” has Arrived!

If you have been following Racquet Quest online and with the podcast, you know we are very fond of data! ¬†In keeping with that “fondness,” we have received our newest testing device, which I have named “Questron.”

During the last week, we have spent time getting Questron set up to do the kinds of testing we think is important for the tennis player, the racquet technician, and anyone else that cares about numbers!

It will be about another week before posting any data because we are “tweaking” some connection points, cycle settings, and refining the data’s graphing.

We have over 400 strings to test; however, we will eliminate many of those strings not relevant to today’s tennis player.

Let us know if there is a string you are particularly interested in. If we have it, we will test it!

Even in the “testing” phase, we are discovering interesting facts about strings that will help us put together the best setup for you!

This is the “base” Questron. ¬†Future versions of this device will incorporate the “Power Potential,” “In-Plane Stiffness,” and “Dynamic Stiffness” testing that is currently done on other equipment.

New Direction = New Opportunities!

This changes everything!


Our new direction has created some extraordinary opportunities! You will not only get great prices you will also receive our dedicated high performance racquet setup!

We see players that get a “great” price, which is good, but too many times the racquet and setup are not contributing to the “value”.

If you are in the market for a racquet upgrade, or even “maybe”, these are too good to pass up!

“It is about time we get something this good!”

More racquets will be added soon so check back often!

Buy Direct?

As any business knows by now, there is a new way to do business regardless of what they are selling, and tennis racquets are no exception!

For several years players have been able to buy “special” racquets from some manufacturers. These racquets were typically unique graphics. The price of these racquets was, also, usually a bit more than “retail’ products.

Now, however, Wilson is making their “Pro” series racquets available through wilson.com, only. These racquets are what the cognoscenti refer to as “pro stock” racquets.

I think it is a good idea!

Why? Because so many players wanted “special” racquets and were paying exorbitant prices for racquets that may or may not be what they thought they were buying! We know because we see them!

Buying direct is one reason we have modified our model slightly by offering to a greater extent “custom” racquets. This way, you know what you are getting, exactly! I believe this will be the case with the Wilson Pro Series as well.

I believe it will not be far that more tennis racquet companies do the “direct” thing; however, “scale” is the issue and stringing and racquet setup. Some companies don’t have the resources for that, yet, so online sellers will still have some action, I think.

If you have a racquet technician you trust, purchase the racquet “direct” but have it set up locally. I think that is a winning combination!

Let us know what you think about buying directly from the racquet brand instead of online or locally.

 

 

 

Jack is Headed to France!

Many of our readers know Jack Anthrop, but I will tell you a little about him just in case you don’t.

Jack Anthrop

We started working for Jack about six (6) years ago, at which time he switched to Ashaway MonoGut ZX. Since that time, Jack has progressed at a stunning rate, now with a UTR of 13.26!

Jack is using the Head PT113B Speed custom racquet and now a new fiber made by Victrex, a UK company that specializes in PEEK materials for high-performance applications which is the Ashaway MonoGut ZX and ZX Pro material.

 

 

But, the big news is Jack is headed to Paris, the one in France, to play in the French Open Juniors! Jack and his partner, Max McKennon from California, are in the main draw doubles!

Jack has a great chance to be in the main draw singles as well.

Max McKennon

 

Congratulations to Jack and Max on this great accomplishment!

Why is My Butt Cap Loose?

Butt caps are the things at the end of your racquet that creates a flared area that fits your hand to add control to your shots.

The butt cap is usually a tight fit to the grip pallet, but manufacturers drive heavy duty staples through the butt cap into the foam grip pallet to make sure it is secure.

Over time, especially with players who hold the racquet at the very end, the butt cap may become loose.

Why is my butt cap loose?

But, why is my butt cap loose?  This picture shows why it is loose!

The pallet has broken due to the stress of the staples and player gripping way, way low on the pallet.

Loose butt caps are not uncommon and can be repaired with success if given the time! Time is required because the repair will involve the use of two-part epoxy. This mixture needs to cure for several hours to be sure it will last.

The alternative, and one we use when we can, is to replace the entire grip pallet.

When we do this, we use only epoxy to secure the butt cap‚ÄĒno staples in most cases.

So the next time your butt cap feels loose, don’t panic. A repair can be made in most cases.

House Cleaning!

Every once in a while Racquet Quest decides to do a little house cleaning and that means opening boxes that have not been open for a long time!

And surprise!  We find a lot of really interesting and exciting tennis racquets!  Most of these have been on the Racquet Museum site but now it is time for them to find a new place to hang out!

Most of these racquets are new! ¬†Many have been strung for evaluation purposes but have not been played with! ¬†All of the racquets will be fitted with a new grip. ¬†All the racquets will come with the string that is now in the racquet, unless new stringing is requested. ¬†All racquets are sold “as is”. ¬†Most of them are new, but the string may be several years old. ¬†There will not be any “junk” offered, just good racquets!

Racquet BrandModelHead SizeGrip SizeStringConditionPrice
Wilson nCode n11155NXT16New200.00
Weed125 Tour EXT1253Weed Synthetic GutNew50.00
Weed135 Open Tour1353ALU Power RoughNew50.00
Weed125 X-One 251253Weed Synthetic GutNew50.00
PrinceTour 100 18x201003NoneNew150.00
PrinceEXO Warrior 1001002Prince Premier AttackNew
150.00
PrinceEXO Red 1051053Prince Premier LTNew125.00
Prince EXO Blue1103Prince Premier LTNew125.00
PrinceEXO Rebel Team 98983Prince Premier/Beast HybridNew150.00
PrinceEXO Rebel 98983Prince Premier/Beast HybridNew200.00
PrinceEXO Rebel 95953Prince BeastNew200.00
HeadSpeed LTD Edition XT1004NoneNew100.00
HeadInstinct MP XT1002NoneNew100.00
HeadGraphene Instinct PWR1153PPS 17New 150.00
HeadGraphene Touch Radical PWR1103FXP 16New 150.00
DunlopAeroGel Smoke1005Silk 17New 100.00
DunlopM-Fil 3 Hundred985NoneNew150.00

Full Custom Racquets in Video

We want to have a discussion of “Full Custom Racquets” and this to be the best we can do at the moment!

Full custom components

Click on  Full Custom Racquet to see the short video, and thank you for watching!

We believe this is an exciting step forward in specialized tennis racquets and preparation.

We are anxious to hear your thoughts on this move to better racquets for everyone…especially you!

 

Full Custom Racquets!