View Full Version : Are extended frames losing market share ?

12-14-2004, 07:22 AM
It seems like the longer frames are diappearing. The new Babolat frames (Pure Storm) are not offered in 27.5, now word is that the Surge X will not be replaced and that Pro Kennex will not offer the Ki 10 in 27.5. No LM Prestige in a stretch. What seems strange to me is that on the pro level there are actually more pros using the longer frames as opposed to a few years ago, but on the consumer level they must not be selling well. Any thoughts on this ?

12-14-2004, 07:45 AM
longer frames seem to come in and out of vogue. now there seem to be 1/4" longer frames rather than 1/2" longer. years ago, there was a shortlived craze for racquets as much as 2" longer. my opinion is that racquets are already powerful enough, and the extra length really is of little benefit and takes away some control...it's good for the manufacturers to keep changing the length up, because it can help generate sales.

12-14-2004, 07:47 AM
I think of the new "beefed up" diablo's coming out is slightly longer... cant remember how much.

I seem to recall that they were like a 22mm frame and 1/4 long or something... in addition to the older diablo's .. not a replacement.

12-14-2004, 07:57 AM
Actually, I prefer 27.5" length to regular length. It could be that I'm only 5'8" and prefer the extra leverage on serves and groundstrokes.

I have the RDTi70 long by Yonex and it is 27.5", and I definitely notice the added leverage. I'm waiting for Yonex to come out with another 95sq.in. long racket, how about an RDX500 long HD ? I'd buy it in an instant.

12-14-2004, 08:11 AM
Actually, I prefer 27.5" length to regular length. It could be that I'm only 5'8" and prefer the extra leverage on serves and groundstrokes.

I have the RDTi70 long by Yonex and it is 27.5", and I definitely notice the added leverage. I'm waiting for Yonex to come out with another 95sq.in. long racket, how about an RDX500 long HD ? I'd buy it in an instant.

When you pick up a normal length frame, have you any problems finding the sweetspot? What I mean to ask is, which length is more natural to you, 27" or 27.5" when it comes down to consequetively hitting the sweetspot. To me it seems that I am hitting always a tad too high and I really take the effort to look at the ball and keep my head still while hitting.

As for a RDX500 long, ever thought of making a small hectagonal piece of wood to extend your racquet with 0.5 inch? Seems like a doable job to me. There also must be pro shops that offer this service (off the shelf would be a lot easier though!).

thomas martinez
12-14-2004, 08:23 AM
Yeah, the Diablo XP is gonna be a 95 Head 23 mm beam, 27.5" 310/31.5 cm unstrung.

12-14-2004, 08:31 AM
Diabo XP? sounds intruiging.....when is that one due out?

12-14-2004, 08:35 AM
Thomas, sorry to add to the deluge of questions you receive, but do you know if there will be a midplus Diablo XP in the 100" range ?

12-14-2004, 08:49 AM
I hope they are losing marketshare. Long racs. are horrible IMO. Wish manu. would keep it simple. OFF-TOPIC, but I wish Yonex would go back to their 18.5MM constant box beams in 90 and 95 sq. inch versions w/16X19 patterns at 12+ ounces. I think the RDX 500 mid would be even sweeter w/thinner beam and a friggin consistent weight (none of this smaller grips, lighter weight crap). I was a scrawny, 115 lb. high school player who played just fine w/12 ounce, thin beamed, 95 sq. in. Yonnies in the good old days.

Golden Retriever
12-14-2004, 08:58 AM
Longer frames are made for 2handers like me. I would like to go back to regular frames so that I could have more choice of racquets but my 2handed backhand just doesn't feel right with a regular frame.

12-14-2004, 09:29 AM
I do tend to hit in the upper part of the sweetspot of a 27", so 27.5" suits me better, and plus I'm two-handed. BTW, I don't think it's that easy to make a 27" into a 27.5", I'm not sure a pro shop could do it properly, if at all.

Richie Rich
12-14-2004, 10:10 AM
gotta go woth ferrari on this one. would be really tough to make a 27 inch racquet into 27.5 or 28. making the extra 1/2 inch or 1 inch length fit onto the handle securely would be an issue. As well as throwing off the balance, weight, and swingweight specs of the racquet. Better to leave it to the racquet co's and just buy long frames off the shelf.

Never had a problem with 27.5 racquets. hit with a couple 28" racquets and couldn't get the timing on my serve.

12-14-2004, 12:59 PM
I have found that 27.5" sticks that are in the 11.0-11.5 oz. weight range with a light to medium swingweight to be hardly a sacrifice in maneuverability compared to heavier (12.0 + oz.) 27" sticks....the advantages? without a doubt, you can gain a very noticeable increase in accuracy, pace, and spin on serves....the disadvantages? a slight disadavantage on returning high pace shots to the body on serve returns and reflex volleys...I personally have justified this trade-off in terms of how many more points I am gaining in matches based on increased serve % and aces than losing on those return shots; with an extremely headlight extended length stick in that tweener-weight category, I can really whip the racquet head around to generate extra spin and pace. Even the Diablo MP at 27.25" showed these advantages, and was a good compromise. I am thinking of experimenting with my current extended racquet of choice, the Yonex MP Tour-5 , by getting one to cut down from 27.5 to 27.25", as this is the best mid-weight extended stick with a nice flexy thin beam out there IMHO.

It is a shame that Wilson is dropping the Surge X in their nSurge line....that's the other great extended length tweener I've played.

12-15-2004, 01:38 AM
Like G Retriever, my DBH plays much better with 27.5" sticks. I'm only 5'9" and the extended length significantly improves my serves (flat bombs and wide slices on the deuce court). Volley and smash well with my Yonex MP Tour 1 XF. My strength has always been my FH, which thankfully stayed with me.

Tried a 28" racquet for a few months and found that I lost too much control on all strokes, so it was a no go.

So, for me, it is a matter of getting the balance right. My two cents? I think many players will benefit from extended racquets due to our different body sizes and playing styles (esp. DBH). The "standard" 27" may not be a good fit for many players. Suggest it is a matter of finding the "optimum contact points relative to your body size".

Does this mean that a guy like Karlovic should play with a 26.5" stick? :lol: May be! Perhaps then his control will improve (holding technique constant)! I do wonder if there is an optimum? efficient? size and proportion for tennis greatness. If we were to average the height of past Number One players, what would that figure be? 6', 6'1" or 6'2", or 6'0.5" :lol: ? And what would be their (non-linear) optimum contact points relative to their bodies? Implications of all this? That genetics or physiology is significant. The rest is technique, talent and diligence.

As long as the demand for extended racquets exist (a sixth of the WTA? a tenth of the ATP? 15% of the rest of us? Another poll to conduct! :D ), the racquet companies will try to earn our dollars.

Lastly, I'm about to try the newly released ProKennex Ionic Ki 5x. Can't wait!