View Full Version : Tennis Magazine Racquet Issue

02-26-2004, 04:31 PM
Just received this issue today. Has anybody checked out the swingweights listed on the summary page? How can these vary so much from TWs calculations?

For example, Wilson PS Tour 95: TW = 325; Tennis Mag = 313

02-26-2004, 04:36 PM
The swingweights listed in Tennis Magazine are probably from the manufacturer and are unstrung, TW uses actual strung weights measured at TW.

02-27-2004, 02:05 PM
How did you get your issue so fast? :?

I have a subscription and haven't seen mine yet!!!


02-27-2004, 03:31 PM
The problem with TWs specs are that they use a very limited sample size, and given the manufacturing variability present in all frames today, they have a good chance of being significantly different than the manufacturers published specs, which (if honest) are based on the actual manufacturing capability.

I tend to favor the mfg specs over TWs for that reason.

Example: TW selects three rackets to test of a given brand. TW weighs them in at 11.5, 11.6 and 12.5. TW averages the three to arrive at 11.9. The actual median of the mfg spec is 12.3. It just happens that two of the three rackets tested by TW were on the light side of the spec. You are more likely to get a 12.3 than an 11.8. I've always thought it would be helpful if the manufacturers would give us a midpoint and Std deviation so we have an idea just how differnet the rackets may be. It's frustrating ordering a racket you thought would weigh 11.2 and get 11.7, but it happens all the time.

02-27-2004, 07:24 PM
I just got a 6.1 recently and it weighed in at 12.2 oz unstrung. The TW specs are 12.4 oz strung weight. I was also interested in the Triad 6.0 a while back and got one that was 12.0 oz strung, when the unstrung weight was 11.7 oz, so the string job should add about .6 oz, not .3 oz. It is confusing and frustrating.

joe sch
02-28-2004, 07:33 AM
String type and guage thickness can account for tolerance around 0.5 oz, Im not sure of the exact figures ? Does anyone have any info on the differences of like a 17g poly vs 15g natural and some of the other popular strings ?

02-28-2004, 09:15 AM
Tennis Mag's 313 swingweight measure sounds the same as that of the normal/Hyper 6.0 95. I think the box-frame Tour 95 has similar if not the same specs as those two rackets, so I'd imagine Tennis Mag could have gotten ahold of one of those.

TW Admin
02-28-2004, 10:14 AM

With all due respect, you have no idea how many frames we spec, you have no idea how many frames Tennis Magazine specs and you have no idea how many are spec'd by each racquet company or how many are spec'd at the factory (company and factory are often different). We believe we provide the most "usable" information anywhere. We're clearly biased but we've been doing this a while and hopefully have it down fairly well.

02-28-2004, 10:50 AM
so when does the magazine arrive

02-29-2004, 10:35 AM
I'm guessing that since I live close to the magazine's distribution center, this is why I received the mag so fast. The specs are misleading and Tennis does a horrible job of prividing accurate information to readers. In recent racquet reviews, they have left off swing weight.

02-29-2004, 10:49 AM
There are different brands of machine for measuring swingweight in the same units and I know different machines do not give the same reading. Even on the same machine the reading can vary from reading to reading.

The TW site is more detailed than any other I've seen; the detailed reviews show how much passion for tennis their staff have so I'm more inclined to accept their readings with the above condition.

Manufacturers may quote the theoretical SW based on a perfect manufacturer process which doesn't yet exist.

Gaines Hillix
02-29-2004, 04:21 PM
I trust the racquet weight that is measured in the field more than the manufacturer's on-paper specs. Increasing string thickness by one gauge can add 5-10 grams to overall racquet weight. A typical coil of 16 gauge nylon string weighs 15-20 grams. It also depends on what the head size is and how many mains and crosses are in the frame.

03-01-2004, 08:55 AM
Yeah, we all really don't know how tennis warehouse tests or tennis magazine. we do know that tennis magazine uses frames without the paint job, which is a good thing, and yeah, maybe they won't bash a racquet if it's bad, but tennis warehouse doesn't do that either, and in fact their reviews are quite positive (they are in the business of selling racquets, after all). but both reviews, overall, do a good job i think

TW Staff
03-01-2004, 10:35 AM
For the record, here is our method of measuring racquet specs. When we receive hitting samples, usually 2 sets of racquets, we measure strung specs on our Babolat RDC*. We compare these specs against each other, then with the manufacturer's target spec, adjusting for strung versus unstrung. If we measure consistent specs from our sample racquets (within tolerance), we'll post the average spec, or that closest to mfg. spec (adjusted for strung) when offering a racquet for pre-order. Once inventory is received, we'll then re-measure 3 strung racquets (or more), and post the most consistent specs, regardless of whether they matche the manufacturer's specs. We also use this information to bring any discrepancies to the attention of the manufacturer. While it may not be perfect, I believe it's about as accurate as one can expect in the imperfect world of racquet production. Don/Tennis Warehouse

*We calibrate our RDC, using calibration racquets provided by Tom Parry, of Völkl International. These match the Babolat calibration "rods" and have shown to be reliable over the past 5 years.

03-01-2004, 12:03 PM
Received the mag today