View Full Version : Blast from the past (we love the 80's)
03-06-2006, 04:36 AM
I need a little history lesson --
I recently pickup a HEAD Polaris 600 on everyone's favorite auction site.
I know that there was a series of racquets that Head produced in the 80's
There were the Genesis, Atlantis, Polaris. Were there others in this series?
What can you tell me about the Polaris? I've heard that while it was not the 'best' racquet in this series it was a very good reasonably priced stick.
any information would be greatly appreciated
03-06-2006, 05:31 AM
Genesis, Atlantis, Polaris,.....Discovery, Orion, Ventoris. Head should name a racquet called 'Orifice'!
03-14-2006, 07:08 PM
Head manufactured a lot of wide-body rackets in the late 80s/early 90s. Three in particular stand out--Ventoris, Atlantis, and Genesis. All three were produced in 600, 660, and 720 cm head sizes. They were popular racquets at the time and are still sought by the people who played with them, switched to a new racquet when Head discontinued them and finally went back out of frustration. The Polaris is identical to the Atlantis except for the paint job. They have a "double power wedge" (flexpoints?) and ranged from 27-32cm wide in the hoop. The Ventoris was a lighter weight model, but the Atlantis (Polaris) and Genesis were 12oz+. I still play with the Atlantis. It has more power than I need, but at my age (50+) the power gives me more speed on my serve and comes in handy at the end of a three setter. It also has an extremely open string pattern which produces jaw-dropping spin. A common reaction from opponents is for them to let the ball go by as they watch it to drop a foot inside the baseline.
My wife plays with the Ventoris and I tried the Genesis for a while but didn't like the closed string pattern. Head, in their infinite wisdom, tinkered with the Atlantis in the mid-90s by adding the "integrated damping system" and closing up the string pattern. It completely ruined the racquet for me. It was dropped from their line a short time later.
03-14-2006, 08:40 PM
I love the widebodies in the 1980's. I started off with the Wilson Profile, the old Prince Thunderstick, and then the Head Genesis. All racquets served me well and had me hooked on tennis. I also got the Head Discovery back in 1989. It was the very first racquet with a shock absorbing handle - I think Head called it 'integrated suspension system'. It worked well because it felt comfortable for something that stiff (50mm wide at tip!). Good ol' retros.
03-15-2006, 04:02 AM
Thank you for the info...
It does appear that Head had a very interesting naming convention.. Sounds like NASA naming their space shuttles....
I finally had chance to really take a good look at the racquet. Man this thing is pristine! There doesn't seem to be a mark on the headguard or anywhere on the frame. I don't think it was played with much at all. I'm going to put in a new set of strings and re-grip it and take it out for a test drive.
I did hit a couple of serves with it and it does seem to have quite a bit of pop to it. Nice weight in the head.
03-15-2006, 10:02 AM
head genesis was a nice stick. liked it more than the polaris. later on switched to the pro staff classic 6.1 for no reason other than being a huge edberg fan....hey, i was young.
03-15-2006, 07:26 PM
I had two Atlantis 600s for a few years ('93 - '98). Great racquets with good balance, stable, not too powerful (like some other widebodies). The very open string pattern is the reason I switched to something else, the strings would break every two or three times I played.
I also bought a Polaris 600. The Polaris feels a little more slugish (less headlight), but not that different.
If I remember the Atlantis 600 was just under 12 oz (it was within 5 grams of the Head Satellite tour), and the Polaris should be about the same.
The "old flexpoint" (interesting thought, Prestigious) technology (frame is narrower at the 3 & 9 O'clock) was good when using a lot of spin, there was less chances to frame the shot.
Those frames were priced around $200 in '90-'91. The Ventoris was a fair amount cheaper (but there was no 600 Ventoris) and the Discovery (I think) was the most expensive, with suspension grip
03-15-2006, 09:11 PM
The widebody craze was a strange thing. Wilson had the dual tapered beam and constant taper from grip to tip while Prince had the taper from tip to grip. Head decided to vary the width into two sections. It never really caught on and did not sell as well as the CTS line from Prince that many people still claim they play with today. Wilson's dual tapered beam is very stiff and jarring. It does not lend itself to feel at all.
03-16-2006, 06:56 PM
carTW is right about the Atlantis being a real string eater. At first, I went through a set of syn gut every week. It made my stringing machine a good investment. I tried different string and finally ended up with pro blend. It's not very arm friendly and doesn't have the greatest feel, but I can get 3 or 4 weeks out of them before they go dead.
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