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View Full Version : How many of you just take the plunge?


sstchur
08-30-2009, 12:14 PM
without demoing it, when trying to decide on a new racquet?

I know some of you don't have any choice b/c demoing isn't available where you are, but for those of you for whom demoing is available, do you ever just go for it anyway and buy something hoping you'll like it, or will learn to like it?

I can demo, and I do, but I get tired of it. I get tired of trying 4, then having to wait a week for them to be sent back, and then wait a few more days to get the new demos.

I'm not complaining about the demo system itself. It's great what TW has setup. This is my own problem -- my own impatience. I freely admit that.

Still, I just want to be done with it. I just want to pick something that I think I'll like, buy it and then learn to like it. Do any of you ever do that?

The Fischer M Pro 1 98 has my eye b/c it is SO CHEAP right now, b/c it is flexy (which I want), is fairly heavy, and has an open string pattern. What's not to like? Those are all the qualities I want in a racquet. Plus, I have a Fischer bag, so they would match!

I'm being silly I know and really just ranting for my own benefit, but I suspect there are others of you like me out there. Would love to hear from you.

diredesire
08-30-2009, 12:40 PM
I rarely demo ;)

I don't switch often, but when I do, I go by a rough spec estimate, and then read comments about the frame. I look at posts from those who have similar upgrade paths/thought processes than I, and then I'll just buy ;)

2ndserveace
08-30-2009, 01:06 PM
I did that with my current frame, the K 95. I had used the N 95 in the past, however, and I was using the K 95 Team at the time of the switch, so it wasn't that dramatic of a change.

Jakedasnake
08-30-2009, 01:12 PM
Hmm, I'll always demo if I can... but I did buy my last racquet (Pure Storm) without demoing..... specs looked good, and it played okay. Nowadays, I'll demo like 20 from the local shop and then decide, because racquets are expensive!

pshulam
08-30-2009, 01:31 PM
Practically all my rackets were purchased when they were discontinued and therefore cannot be demoed. I would definitely demo it or borrow it if possible. It's a pain to buy a used racket and then sell it. Unless the racket is in demand, it's hard to sell it.

pshulam
08-30-2009, 01:32 PM
The Fischer M Pro 1 98 has my eye b/c it is SO CHEAP right now, b/c it is flexy (which I want), is fairly heavy, and has an open string pattern. What's not to like? Those are all the qualities I want in a racquet. Plus, I have a Fischer bag, so they would match!
Did you end up buying one?

T1000
08-30-2009, 02:18 PM
I did this twice.

First i bought an rdis 100 mid and i hated it. not anything like the rds 001s or the rdx 500. Then i bought a prestige pro a couple months later. I love it and i wont switch for a while.

iscottius
08-30-2009, 02:31 PM
I rarely demo ;)

I don't switch often, but when I do, I go by a rough spec estimate, and then read comments about the frame. I look at posts from those who have similar upgrade paths/thought processes than I, and then I'll just buy ;)

I do the same as diredesire, but I consider the first frame that I buy of a model an extended demo. If I make a switch to the frame will buy two more. I find a short term demo to be misleading. I need 6 hitting sessions before I can confidently make the switch. I will know after one or two hitting sessions if i like the racquet but takes a few more to be sure.

sstchur
08-30-2009, 02:34 PM
Did you end up buying one?

Not yet. Here's what I'm struggling with:

Currently demoing:

Donnay Pro One Mid -- wonderful, love the ball pocketing, but maybe lacking stability for me...

Fischer M Comp 95 -- very soft, almost too soft. Lacks feeling or something? Feels like I'm hitting with a pillow. Even the Donnay doesn't feel that way -- feels like hard material, just flexy hard material. This one is close, but I feel like it needs more "pop" or something

PK Redondo 98 -- probably my favorite so far. It's soft, but has STABILITY, which I like. Problem is, too expensive for me. I'd need to find it used, and I'm very picky about grip size -- must be 4 1/2, and I won't build up. I've seen the Redondo 93 for cheaper on the Bird (I assume TW will match their price), but I'm concerned about a lack of ability to generate spin with the 93 (since it has just as dense a string pattern as the 98 ).

I'm wondering if the Fischer Pro One 98 fits the bill: STABLE like the Redondo, but flexy like the Donnay?

I'm worried that the Pro One 98 would also feel like a pillow to me? I just can't decide.

Any words of wisdom?

Kevo
08-30-2009, 02:39 PM
The only frame I have bought without demoing is the Pure Storm Limited. I demoed about twenty frames maybe more and found that I really gravitated toward thin beam frames with more control.

I liked the KBlade Tour a lot, but it wasn't quite right so I went ahead and bought the PSL thinking I'd at least be similarly happy with it, and I was hoping for something a little better.

I was pleasantly surprised by it and feel I got a little lucky in finding such a good match. I don't think I would have bought it without the demo though if I hadn't hit with just about every other thin beam and 18x20 frame I could find.

I don't plan on changing frames for a while.

Mongolmike
08-30-2009, 04:01 PM
My last two sticks I demo'd. The Babolat AeroPro Drive+ an instructor was using... I asked if I could try it during the session.... loved it, bought one. However later, through extended play I did find it to be a bit too much racquet for me... hard to control on my power shots. Only string that worked best for me was a full bed of Pro Hurricane Tour... but the feedback through my arm was severe. No arm trouble, but it sure buzzed my forearm alot.

This spring a friend demo'd a bunch of racquets through TW, and I went out and hit with him. We both loved the Becker 11 S.E. and bought one. As the summer progressed, he was still demo'ing sticks, and wasn't using his Becker much, so I bought it off him. Now I've got the 2 identical Beckers, and it works great for comparing different strings or grips or tensions. The Babolat is in the closet.

If given the opportunity, demo'ing is the way to go. It may not be the best test to try too many racquets all at once tho. If you try 3 racquets, all at the same time, and if they are all different... just cuz one feels really different you might think... man, I don't like this because it is so different... but that is only because maybe one of the other racquets happens to feel more like your current stick. So you might dismiss the stick that feels the most different, because you are used to something different.

I think the best way (if possible) to demo, is one new stick at a time, and give it a good workout... not just 5-10 ground strokes back and forth between you and a partner... but try to play with it for a while and try to get used to it. Give it a fair shot. Serve with it, volley with it, etc. And try to determine if a string or string combo you like to use might work in the demo racquet... maybe the demo is strung different than what you like to play with, which might cause you some initial inconsistent hitting.

Booyah
08-30-2009, 04:03 PM
I never tried the Ncode six-one 95. bought 2 of them. still love them.

jamauss
08-30-2009, 04:04 PM
I've done it a few times. The last 3 times I "took the plunge" I didn't regret it. (Microgel Prestige Mid, KBlade Tour, Aerogel 100)

Kirko
08-30-2009, 04:09 PM
purchase I demoed a month the Pure Drive GT and made the decision to get the Pure Drive Roddick because of the extra weight, which I added lead to boost it to 12 oz.

skyzoo
08-30-2009, 04:44 PM
Bought a microgel radical pro no demo needed. Great choice by me

chaddles
08-30-2009, 04:56 PM
Strings are such a critical component of the whole feel of a racquet, so I usually have a look at the specs of the racquets for the weight, swingweight, string pattern etc to narrow down the choice. Then I have them strung up with the same strings to have a bit of a hit to get a feel for the racquet, and which ever one feels the best after that stage I will get then start tinkering around.

For instance the SP Black had the Port inserts and I loved the feel of the racquet initially, the more I hit I found that the strings were too tight and the control was not quite right. I then put in the Hole inserts, dropped the tension down and inversed the BB & NXT setup I had and now the racquet is playing near perfect. Next is a bit of experimentation with lead tape to see if I can get a bit more out of it then I will get another 1 or 2.

jwr1972
08-30-2009, 06:24 PM
Not yet. Here's what I'm struggling with:

Currently demoing:

Donnay Pro One Mid -- wonderful, love the ball pocketing, but maybe lacking stability for me...

Fischer M Comp 95 -- very soft, almost too soft. Lacks feeling or something? Feels like I'm hitting with a pillow. Even the Donnay doesn't feel that way -- feels like hard material, just flexy hard material. This one is close, but I feel like it needs more "pop" or something

PK Redondo 98 -- probably my favorite so far. It's soft, but has STABILITY, which I like. Problem is, too expensive for me. I'd need to find it used, and I'm very picky about grip size -- must be 4 1/2, and I won't build up. I've seen the Redondo 93 for cheaper on the Bird (I assume TW will match their price), but I'm concerned about a lack of ability to generate spin with the 93 (since it has just as dense a string pattern as the 98 ).

I'm wondering if the Fischer Pro One 98 fits the bill: STABLE like the Redondo, but flexy like the Donnay?

I'm worried that the Pro One 98 would also feel like a pillow to me? I just can't decide.

Any words of wisdom?

I can say that I am switching for the most part from the M Comp 95 to the Pro No. 1 98. It does have more feel and more pop(esp on the serve). The M Comp is a little more stable(esp. on returns). I would outright buy the M Pro No 1 98 but that is coming from a very biased person :).

The_Question
08-30-2009, 07:25 PM
I don't ever demo cause it usually comes with poor strings and undesirable tension...

mrtrinh
08-30-2009, 08:46 PM
I usually demo but with my current racquet I took the plunge and bought the speed pro. Just loved the specs on the racquet and luckily its exactly what I've been looking for.

goober
08-30-2009, 08:58 PM
I demoed when I first starting playing because I had no idea what I was looking for in a racquet and it changed as I got better. Now that my playing has pretty much leveled off and I know exactly what spec range I am looking for, I usually just buy. I am not looking for a holy grail, just a racquet that is within a relatively narrow spec range. I have not been disappointed yet.

KOtennis
08-30-2009, 09:07 PM
i have done that WAY too many times.
I am in LA and have access to demos.

i would say most of the time i don't regret.

sticks that i did not demo, bought, and LIKED are:
PST, AG100, RDS001, RDX500, AN90, AN95

ones i DID NOT like:
Speed Pro, N2, K90

diredesire
08-30-2009, 09:07 PM
I do the same as diredesire, but I consider the first frame that I buy of a model an extended demo. If I make a switch to the frame will buy two more. I find a short term demo to be misleading. I need 6 hitting sessions before I can confidently make the switch. I will know after one or two hitting sessions if i like the racquet but takes a few more to be sure.

I would do the same, as it makes a lot of sense, but I generally buy in pairs, because they are likely to be from the same batch, and the specs tend to match much better. I find it to be less of a problem when i look outside the very mainstream brands (wilson, prince, head). The tolerances on the smaller brands tend to be really tight, but it's still a habit i have... I also tend to buy used..

fuzz nation
08-31-2009, 05:14 AM
Seems as though that Fischer is cheap enough that you could "buy it to try it" and that's nice because unlike a typical demo, you can try different string setups, do a little lead tuning, and anything else. Plus, you get to keep it in your bag for a while.

I've messed around with a lot of 2nd hand racquets in recent years and also enjoyed TW's demo program. It's funny because unless I have one of those horrible experiences with a test drive and I can't relate to a frame at all, it can take a looooong time for me to really settle in with a different racquet. If I hate it, I know it within about two or three minutes - you've probably been there.

My only reservation on the M Pro 98, given your other experiences, is that it might also lack that stability you're looking for. I had a couple of the heavier M-Speed Pro #1 98's a while back and despite their overall quality, those frames left me wanting a bit more stability in the hoop - keep in mind that I've always used a somewhat hefty racquet. In the case of the M Pro, I doubt it would be hard to dial that racquet in with just a little lead tape. I've found that a little at 3/9 o'clock can go a good long way - it did wonders for a Yonex RQiS 1 Tour that I got in a trade and I've also cheered up one of my Volkl C10's with just a little lead.

Shop used! Eventually you'll score what you're looking for, including the Redondos if you're patient and keep at it for a while.

bertrevert
08-31-2009, 05:16 AM
Yeah have done that because of strong AUS dollar to US a while back and if going into a bulk buy the postage was negligible, or have had racq come over in visiting US relative's suitcases.

Anyway none of those racqs really stayed the distnace (or survived the match losses) and were disposed of.

Taking the plunge is ok if you know it will be a popular racq to dispose of in good cond. Heck given the currency diff I wasn't losing anything.

Taking the plunge on specs alone isn't really the best way fwd but sometimes you just have to do it. Really I'm all for stumping up the cash and if need be wearing the hangover later...

wyutani
08-31-2009, 05:17 AM
i remembered buying the pure drive way back in 2005. the racquet is just wrong, its a plus size, too long for me, and the grip size is wrong. (PS, i never went to that store to buy racquets again).

So, i was forced to customize it, and it went pretty well, still one of my fav racquets.

dadozen
08-31-2009, 05:58 AM
Most of the time I buy racquets without demoing them. Even when I was a tennager, and my parents got me the racquets, I don't remember demoing them. But, at that time, we didn't have as many options as we have now. For example, I played with the PSC 6.1 and with the Dunlop Classic Pro Revelation and I don't remember many other options.

Even when I started buying my own racquets I haven't demoed them. But I do search a lot and try to talk to the pro shop owner about all brands and qualities. The only time I regret buying without knowing the racquet was when I got the PStorms, thinking that it was the PControl evolution line. It wasn't.

Then I got my 300 Tours without demo as well. But I did a lot of research through TW and always kept thinking how its specs would help my game. And this I don't regret at all.

eagle
08-31-2009, 06:28 AM
As I've mentioned in other posts, there is not one racquet that will fit your game. There will be a number of them.

Pick the one that you are comfortable with, works well for you, and meets your price point.

Once you get it, stick with it. You will get better and better with it.

Just remember that you are the one wielding the racquet and not the other way around.

Also remember that most if not all racquets are over-engineered to exceed most tennis players' abilities.

Good luck, pick your racquet already, and get out there and hit. :)

r,
eagle

Bigtime
08-31-2009, 07:25 AM
Plunged into a T2000, (just because it looked cool, and "it must be good since Conners is using it")

Plunged into a $69.00 granny rocket launcher Head Intelligence from Large5,
(didn't know anything about specs after 25 yrs away)

Plunged into a Head FlexPoint Heat because I liked the color and figured I was ready for a Tweener.

Plunged into Maxply McEnroe frames while they were available cheap.

Demo'ed and bought a KBT (because it wasn't cheap)

Just plunged into the AG100 world based on price, specs and feedback from the AG100 club posts. Very happy with the AG100, working quite well for me right now. Considering getting at least one more of those.

fps
08-31-2009, 07:35 AM
i demo'd a few racquets before i got my first "proper" racquet (flexpoint prestige). that didn't work out for me. bought an RDS003 without demoing based on reviews, stats relative to the prestige, and this forum, love it. bought RDX500MPs off net based on stats and this forum, they're great too.

demoing is overrated, the strings are crummy or dead and you feel pressure to like the racquet.

sstchur
08-31-2009, 08:20 AM
Seems as though that Fischer is cheap enough that you could "buy it to try it" and that's nice because unlike a typical demo, you can try different string setups, do a little lead tuning, and anything else. Plus, you get to keep it in your bag for a while.

I've messed around with a lot of 2nd hand racquets in recent years and also enjoyed TW's demo program. It's funny because unless I have one of those horrible experiences with a test drive and I can't relate to a frame at all, it can take a looooong time for me to really settle in with a different racquet. If I hate it, I know it within about two or three minutes - you've probably been there.

My only reservation on the M Pro 98, given your other experiences, is that it might also lack that stability you're looking for. I had a couple of the heavier M-Speed Pro #1 98's a while back and despite their overall quality, those frames left me wanting a bit more stability in the hoop - keep in mind that I've always used a somewhat hefty racquet. In the case of the M Pro, I doubt it would be hard to dial that racquet in with just a little lead tape. I've found that a little at 3/9 o'clock can go a good long way - it did wonders for a Yonex RQiS 1 Tour that I got in a trade and I've also cheered up one of my Volkl C10's with just a little lead.

Shop used! Eventually you'll score what you're looking for, including the Redondos if you're patient and keep at it for a while.

Thanks, this is helpful!

I played w/ the M Comp 95 for about an hour and fifteen today and really kept an open mind. Once I started grooving on it, I really began to like it. I'm fairly certain now that I'm down to the M Comp 95 or the M Pro One 98.

My previous judgment about the Redondo was maybe a little off. I made a quick judgment of it after only hitting for a few minutes and it was right after playing w/ the M Comp 95. After giving them both a chance for a bit longer, I like the M Comp 95 better.

You mention stability of the M Pro One 98. Do you find it to be less stable than the M Comp. I imagine you're right in that some lead tape could solve that.

I wonder if the M Pro One 98 would be an easier transition for me, since I previously played with the Gamma T-7, which is 100 sq in about 12oz (once I added lead to the handle).