Category Archives: Good News!
In a previous post, we saw string failure(s) for the same string, i.e., not a “hybrid” format.
In this post, we will see the typical failure of a “hybrid” format using polyester for the main string and a multifilament for the cross string.
The polyester string shows very little wear whereas the multifilament cross string has completely come apart. This is exactly what one would expect, and frankly, hope for.
This failure indicates the main string is moving across the cross strings which allows the ball to “catch” the main string and begin to “rotate.”
Players may decide on a hybrid format in the belief that the multifilament cross string will significantly mitigate the stiffness of the polyester main string. Depending on what strings are used this, may or may not be true.
For comparison purposes, this racquet has about seven (7) hours of hitting while training, That probably relates to about twenty (20) hours of “normal play” for this person.
The caption of this post is “String Failure” but while this string is definitely failed it is not a “failure”. This setup did exactly what it is intended to do for this player.
As racquet technicians, we are bombarded with “new product” information! Especially when it comes to racquet string!
So what do you and we need to know when making a string decision?
History, that’s what. The image shows just some historical data points.
We can look at data for any string and client to determine the history of that combination. If the history is a good one, we can make an excellent decision based on it. And, of course, the converse is true.
When a client comes in for the first time, it is imperative to have a real discussion about the needs of the player. In some cases, the “need” is far different than the “want”. I found that most clients will listen to what we have to say and we can say it with some conviction because we have the “history” to confirm our conviction(s).
So, know your history!
Yonex seems to be on a roll right now with several years of outstanding performance racquets! Well, with the VCore Pro Series they have pushed that ball a little faster, and harder! It is rolling now!
Let’s run down some of the specs on each of the three (3) VCore Pro racquets.
It is no surprise that the Pro 97 330 is the heaviest of the three because it very subtly says so right on the racquet (330). The Pro 97 310 has a meager swing weight (304) to accompany the lower weight of 310. I believe these are so low that some players will opt for the VCore Pro 100 which is a bit stiffer (RDC Flex) than the 97’s.
However, the VCore 97 330 feels the best of all of them because you know what it is meant to do.
In addition to the great “players” specs, these racquets are the best looking from Yonex in a while in my opinion!
If you are interested in a racquet series that is dedicated to performance, you need to try one of these new Yonex VCore Pro racquets.
This series is a “thin beam” design (21mm) with the traditional Yonex head shape that sort of equalizes the length of the main and cross strings in the center of the racquet offering a controlled feel.
This series like most of the Yonex performance racquets are made in Japan. The consistency of specification is very good if you carry several racquets and want them to feel the same.
The demos are in the shop and available for your consideration!
If you have taken advantage of our Stringing Frequency Calculator on this site you know that stringing often is the path to better play!
But what if the strings break before you can re-string, and why do they break!
Strings wear out! The picture shows what that may look like. A clean break close the area the ball is hit most often If you look closely you will see “notches” caused by the rubbing friction between the strings. This is an OK failure. This is a polyester string so the break is clean as opposed to a multifilament string that will “fray” before it fails.
These are the same racquet model and same string and tension. The image on the right shows a failure by Shanking! This is the dreaded failure mode because it can happen on the first shot or the hundredth shot…you never know, and it is frustrating!
This string is considered to be very tough but not many strings can stand up to the shear load and impulse of a mis-hit, aka “shank”.
I have discovered over the years that the shanking failure occurs more often amongst tournament level women players! My theory is that with stiff strings, that doesn’t return much energy, the player’s strokes have to be harder, and if the shot hits near the frame, it may cause the shanking failure.
This kind of failure can also be associated with decreased footwork as a player gets tired. Reaching “way out” for a ball instead of getting set up for it can put the impact zone right at the tip of the racquet and a shank occurs.
String failure(s) in this area used to be blamed on a “bad grommet’. A bad grommet is hardly likely anymore with the much better materials being used. It is still possible, however, and you need to keep grommets in good repair!
Some players like to have a “logo” on their strings while sponsored players must have a “logo” on their strings. Pro Players typically have the racquet brand, and the string brand (if different than the racquet brand) proudly displayed.
But what if you are not getting paid to play with a particular racquet or string brand? Do you still want a logo?
In our experience, it is a meager percentage of players that want a logo on their racquet.
We do, however, put a logo on all of our demo racquets, but it has a “purpose.” Other than identifying our demo racquets it also points directly to the COP (Center of Percussion). In most cases, this is not even mentioned to the person demoing the racquet while in other cases we point out the reason for the logo.
Because we calculate the COP for every racquet it is easy to identify it. With the logo, we can show the player where the COP is, and that area will return a pretty nice feeling hit. So try to hit close to that point, we advise them.
This particular racquet, the Yonex VCore Pro 97, 330, has a COP of 20.8 inches (52.8cm) and the Yonex VCore Pro 100, 300, has a COP of 20.9 inches (53.1cm) from the butt cap.
So, if you or your shop uses a logo try to point out something useful about it in addition to promoting your shop or your favorite racquet brand.
It has been incredibly busy this winter at Racquet Quest, but that is no excuse to keep you wondering what is here and what is coming your way soon!
You know the new Wilson Ultra series, both the CV and the Tour are in the shop along with the new Head Radical and Head Prestige. I have racquets for your evaluation now.
This website is consumer-centric, but I want to point out some new diagnostic equipment and stringing machines while we are here.
Gosen, one of the premier string manufacturers in the world, sent a GM One Diagnostic machine for evaluation. If you have been to the World Headquarters of Racquet Quest, LLC you have seen several pieces of equipment we use to certify that your racquet is in the very best playing and physical condition.
The Gosen GM One is a swing weight device that has extended the precision to .5 units! And, the included scale measures in the .1 gram range. This is extreme accuracy!
We have the Babolat Racquet Station stringing machine in for evaluation. A state of the art machine physically and electronically.
We are using this machine to evaluate different string formats, i.e., hybrids with polyester mains/multi-filament crosses, the reverse format, gut/polyester, polyester/gut and straight multi-filament.
The results are exciting and enlightening.
Many of the new Head Touch series racquets accept the Head Sensor.
What makes this device different is that it is not permanent like the Babolat Play Sensor, nor is it attached the rear end of the racquet like the Sony Sensor, creating a small extension, nor is it attached to the string bed. Nope, the Head Sensor replaces the standard butt cap, and unless you look really closely, you cannot see the charging points, making it nearly invisible to others. Click Head Sensor to see all of the features of this clever device.
This format makes it less likely to get lost, or having it be a disruption when hitting. The Head Sensor connects to the free app and transmits data to your smartphone, or if the sensor is inserted into your friend’s racquet to their smartphone.
The 3D capability is a fun way to see what your stroke looks like and how efficient the stroke is.
Players that have tested a Head racquet with the sensor active really like the feedback. Even if you have had less than wonderful experiences with a “sensor” you need to try this setup. Stop by and pick up the Head Prestige demo and see for yourself.
Whatever you celebrate this time of year I hope all of us can celebrate love and good health!
To our friends around the world, we extend best wishes for this holiday season!
The new Head Graphene Touch Radical series is here and the response has been exceptional!
The desire to damp out vibration is a big deal now and “Touch” does this to a significant degree but still retains the “feel” preferred by serious players.
The Radical MP replaces the Radical MPA with a straightaway players racquet of 98 inches, a 16×19 string pattern and a flex of 64!
Perfect for a combination of power and comfort.
The new Graphene Touch Radical series includes the immensely popular Radical Pro, Radical S, and the surprising Radical PWR!
The Radical Pro will accept the popular “Pro Player Cap System” but in the standard configuration weighs in at 326 grams (11.5 oz) with a flex of 66 contributing to the extra power.
Radical S is a beautiful 102 square inch racquet with a 16×19 pattern in a thin beam racquet that weighs in at 295 grams (10.4 oz) strung! Plenty of room for customization!
This is a surprising racquet and is suitable for many player styles!
Probably the most underrated model is the Radical PWR. Because we deal with “high performance” racquets, we sometimes overlook the “oversize” offerings that are quite good. This is one of those!
The Radical PWR is 110 square inches of goodness!
The string pattern can be either 16×19 or 14×19 for increased “spin” potential. The extra length (.30 in) adds helpful swing weight while keeping the overall weight at 282 grams (9.94 oz) strung.
The new Radical bag line-up is one of the best I have seen recently…
The new Head Graphene Touch Radical racquets are exceptional but if you are in the market for a performance racquet of last years “look” we have several that fit that category.
The Head Speed, Head Radical, Head Instinct, Wilson ProStaff, and Wilson Blade, plus some other surprises!