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rafa_prestige89
05-19-2007, 05:12 PM
Has Safin changed his racquet weight since he ''switched'' to the FXP Prestige? Cause his Liquidmetal Prestige had lead tape all over the racquet head, and now it has lead only on 10 and 2 o'clock. Do you know why?

ShcMad
05-19-2007, 09:03 PM
Has Safin changed his racquet weight since he ''switched'' to the FXP Prestige? Cause his Liquidmetal Prestige had lead tape all over the racquet head, and now it has lead only on 10 and 2 o'clock. Do you know why?

I would like to know this myself as well. During the LM Prestige times, Safin had lead tape at 3 and 9 as well as at 12. Nowadays, it's only at 12 (or 10 and 2 as you say...either way they're just long strips of lead that stretch out to 10 and 2).

I don't have insider information but my best guess is...he hasn't switched his specs too much; however, Head people do not want Safin putting visible lead tape at 3 and 9 due to cosmetic reasons. Since, putting lead there would cover the FLEXPOINT lettering, and when beginner tennis players see that chunk of lead all over the frame, they might say "Oh geez, Safin's racquet looks different from the retail one"

I think nowadays he puts that lead tape inside the grommets. I know every racquet needs different amounts of weight in different locations in order to match the specs. But, Safin seems to be putting longer strips of lead at 12 than before. I wonder if he made his racquet a little head heavier or whether he re-distributed the location of lead. If anybody has info on this, please let us know.

War, Safin!
06-03-2007, 05:15 AM
I would like to know this myself as well. During the LM Prestige times, Safin had lead tape at 3 and 9 as well as at 12. Nowadays, it's only at 12 (or 10 and 2 as you say...either way they're just long strips of lead that stretch out to 10 and 2).

I don't have insider information but my best guess is...he hasn't switched his specs too much; however, Head people do not want Safin putting visible lead tape at 3 and 9 due to cosmetic reasons. Since, putting lead there would cover the FLEXPOINT lettering, and when beginner tennis players see that chunk of lead all over the frame, they might say "Oh geez, Safin's racquet looks different from the retail one"

I think nowadays he puts that lead tape inside the grommets. I know every racquet needs different amounts of weight in different locations in order to match the specs. But, Safin seems to be putting longer strips of lead at 12 than before. I wonder if he made his racquet a little head heavier or whether he re-distributed the location of lead. If anybody has info on this, please let us know.
The why not put all the lead taping underneath the CAP grommet?
Perhaps he is using a Flexpoint Prestige afterall...this would also explain why he doesn't:
a) use power-pads anymore and
b) have lead tape at 3 and 9 / 10 and 2 o'clock.

Just a thought.

vsbabolat
06-03-2007, 07:24 AM
Safin is still using the Prestige Classic 600. It is just the lead would cover up the "Flexpoint" area.
http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w50/vsbabolat/73018882.jpg

ShcMad
06-03-2007, 12:55 PM
The why not put all the lead taping underneath the CAP grommet?
Perhaps he is using a Flexpoint Prestige afterall...this would also explain why he doesn't:
a) use power-pads anymore and
b) have lead tape at 3 and 9 / 10 and 2 o'clock.

Just a thought.

I have no idea why he doesn't put the visible lead at 12 under the CAP grommets. As the poster after you said, Safin is clearly still using the PC 600. You can clearly see the plastic collar underneath the overgrip, and also the painted Flexpoint holes.

Safin did not have visible lead at 12 when he first switched to the Flexpoint paintjob. However, the first time I spotted the visible lead tape at 12 o'clock was during the Davis Cup tie against Argentina.

My guess is that Safin likes to tinker with the weight and balance of his racquets depending on court surface speed and temperature. Grant Morgan, who strung some of his frames, said that Safin constantly tinkers with lead tape. According to Grant Morgan, he would sometimes add or peel off lead at 12 as often as every tournament.

zapvor
06-03-2007, 06:29 PM
what?! i am not an insider myself but from what i read in Chang's autobiogrpahy, the pros get their rackets made exact to specification, so thre is no need for lead tape. whatever weight balance etc they want they tell their sponor and they make a batch just for the pro. Chang and his brother would tell teh lab in NJ what they wanted, and then test it out, then send them back with comments until they were satifised. so judging by that, i dont think pros deal with lead, unless they change their mind after they have gotten their 'final' batch

PrestigeClassic
06-03-2007, 06:49 PM
What one player has experienced with one brand (that has since changed ownership) and with his unique "equipment personality" in mind, there is no bearing on any general pro population.

ShcMad
06-03-2007, 08:14 PM
what?! i am not an insider myself but from what i read in Chang's autobiogrpahy, the pros get their rackets made exact to specification, so thre is no need for lead tape. whatever weight balance etc they want they tell their sponor and they make a batch just for the pro. Chang and his brother would tell teh lab in NJ what they wanted, and then test it out, then send them back with comments until they were satifised. so judging by that, i dont think pros deal with lead, unless they change their mind after they have gotten their 'final' batch


With Safin it's a little different. Supposedly, he often tinkers with his racquet's specs before each tournament. I'm pretty sure that he does have a set of specifications that he uses as the base. However, I heard from Grant Morgan that he sometimes adds extra weight at 12 even after the racquet was customized. He mostly does it for slower courts. He would also peel a little lead tape off if he wasn't satisfied with it. When he felt like he was hitting well, then he woud tell the customizer to customize his racquet specs to that one racquet for just that one tournament. And, then for the next tournament, he would peel everything off. He's unpredictable.

zapvor
06-03-2007, 09:32 PM
With Safin it's a little different. Supposedly, he often tinkers with his racquet's specs before each tournament. I'm pretty sure that he does have a set of specifications that he uses as the base. However, I heard from Grant Morgan that he sometimes adds extra weight at 12 even after the racquet was customized. He mostly does it for slower courts. He would also peel a little lead tape off if he wasn't satisfied with it. When he felt like he was hitting well, then he woud tell the customizer to customize his racquet specs to that one racquet for just that one tournament. And, then for the next tournament, he would peel everything off. He's unpredictable.

i stand corrected.

War, Safin!
06-04-2007, 08:46 AM
With Safin it's a little different. Supposedly, he often tinkers with his racquet's specs before each tournament. I'm pretty sure that he does have a set of specifications that he uses as the base. However, I heard from Grant Morgan that he sometimes adds extra weight at 12 even after the racquet was customized. He mostly does it for slower courts. He would also peel a little lead tape off if he wasn't satisfied with it. When he felt like he was hitting well, then he woud tell the customizer to customize his racquet specs to that one racquet for just that one tournament. And, then for the next tournament, he would peel everything off. He's unpredictable.
Yeah, he used to have lead at 3 and 9 o'clock and also at 12 o'clock too at the Aus Open two years ago...

rafa_prestige89
06-04-2007, 08:10 PM
Yeah, but this year he is using lead tape at the same place in all the surfaces...really strange...
Also, his PC and his I.Prestige didn't have lead...

travlerajm
06-04-2007, 08:29 PM
According to an insider on this forum, Safin was know to tune his racquets on the practice court before his matches by adjusting the amount of lead at 12, (I assume with the amount depending on the conditions like the string tension and temperature).

If the lead were not on the outside, he wouldn't be able to make these fine-tuning adjustments.

ShcMad
06-04-2007, 09:02 PM
i stand corrected.

You better! har har...I'm joking. :o

ShcMad
06-04-2007, 09:06 PM
Yeah, but this year he is using lead tape at the same place in all the surfaces...really strange...
Also, his PC and his I.Prestige didn't have lead...

From what I know, back when Safin was using the original PC600 paintjob, his swingweight was much lower than the present Safin racquet.

Back then, I believe the unstrung swingweight of his PC600 was in the high 290's. These days, the average unstrung swingweight of his frames are supposedly ~335.

Hessam
06-05-2007, 11:42 AM
Your observation is totally correct.... I think what happened to safin as he switched from VS Gut to full Poly and poly/gut set-ups...his rackets got increasingly heavier as his actual tension continued to go down.

Last time I heard on his tension was in Vegas semi final against Hewitt, and he was using 25/24....which is around 55/53 roughly.....

If you look earlier on in his career his tension with gut was much higher around the mid 60's and swingweight much lighter than today.

Ironically I think that safin game is much more improved over his younger days.... (just look at his service motion and see how much that is changed)....but his footwork has declined so badly that he is rarely in a good position to his strokes the way he should with that frame.