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travlerajm
06-18-2006, 12:56 AM
The ATP pro landscape is becoming more polarized. What I mean by this is that the ATP tour used to be the exclusive realm of players who played heavy racquets with low moment of inertia. Today, most pros still use the classic depolarized setup. But we are now witnessing the dawn of the “polarizer.” Polarizers use racquet setups with more polarized weight distributions - i.e., weight distributed more toward the ends.

The polarized setup is used by players like Federer, Nadal, and Davydenko. Polarized setups have very low hitting weight to swingweight ratio. Because of the relatively low hitting weight, lower tension is required to compensate for the power deficit. The advantage of this type of setup is increased spin. So polarized setups are required to hit the ultra-sharp angles that Federer is known for (According to Greg Raven’s site, Fed’s racquet has a higher swingweight than a retail Tour 90, but it’s static weight is the same. It is therefore more polarized than the retail version). And Nadal’s polarized setup (15 grams under his bumper plus 5 grams in the butt) help him generate the tremendous spins that have helped him to dominate the clay court circuit.

While polarized setups are becoming more popular today (especially for slow-court specialists) because of the increased spin potential, the polarized setups have some major disadvantages. The biggest disadvantage of the polarized (low-tension) setup is that it is very difficult to control the trajectory of your shot when the incoming shot has heavy spin. Considering Federer’s low-tension polarized setup, his inability to drive his flat backhand accurately when he plays Nadal should not be surprising. Also, a polarized setup has poor stability and control on volleys. Polarized setups make it more difficult to hit accurate powerful shots unless a heavy spin component is used to control the depth.

Due to these many drawbacks of polarized setups, most pros still opt for classic depolarized setups. It is no coincidence that the best returners in history have all been “depolarizers.” Hewitt, Agassi, Blake, and Courier are/were among the best at stepping in and ripping returns on the rise. As good as Federer and Nadal are, these two polarizers will never be able to drive service returns from inside the baseline like the best depolarizers.

In general, the best serve-and-volleyers have all been depolarizers. As depolarizers like Becker, Edberg, Sampras and Krajicek have shown, the lawns of Wimbledon are perfect for the accurate and penetrating balls that come off the stiff stringbeds of a depolarized racquet. Rafter is a notable exception – his polarized setup allowed him to hit slow, high-bouncing kick serves, giving him time to close tightly on the net. He then used his athleticism to stab passing attempts downward into the court. But Rafter’s springy stringbed was less than ideal for hitting the precision first volleys from shoetop level that were a key to Sampras’ and Becker’s Wimbledon dominance. And Rafter’s loopy serve didn’t bounce as high on grass, making it harder for him to dominate on grass the way he could on speedy high-bouncing hardcourts.

So now on to the main point of this thread…

The following step-by-step procedure will allow you to customize your racquet with a “depolarized” low polar moment of inertia setup so that it plays similarly to the racquets used by the majority of current ATP pros. Pros using this type of setup include Sampras, Agassi, Blake, Roddick, Hewitt, Kiefer, Grosjean, and most greats from past eras.

Procedure for creating the classic “depolarized” pro style racquet setup:

Step 1. Start with a thin-beam stock racquet. A flex rating of 65 or lower will work best. Stiffer platform frames will be excellent for serve-and-volley style, but the spin potential of stiff frames will be severely limited once they are properly leaded up. So I recommend starting with a flexible frame. The starting strung weight can be anywhere between 11 and 12.5 oz. Headsize is not critical.

Step 2. Choose your desired final racquet weight based on your desired style of play. For serve-and-volley style or for an offensive-minded penetrating groundstroke style, I recommend 13.0-13.5 oz. When optimized, a heavier racquet in this range will be best for directional accuracy, especially against hard-hit incoming balls, or against heavy incoming spin. If you would prefer to be a little more defensive-minded or consistency-oriented player, I recommend a static weight closer to 12.5 oz. For best results, I recommend that there is 0.5 to 1.5 oz. between your starting strung weight and your desired final weight.

An aside note: When choosing your playing style, I encourage you to be open-minded, ignore your current strengths and weaknesses, and select the setup of the player you most desire to play like. When I use a well-balanced, Federer-like polarized setup, I find myself going for inside-out sharply angled dipping forehands. When I set my racquet up like Coria, my strokes become loopy and spinny but I feel like it’s impossible to miss. But when I set my racquet up like Blake, I can’t resist going for flat penetrating forehands to the corners. And when I use the Sampras setup, my serve-and-volley confidence shoots skyward. In other words, my racquet setup influences my playing style more than my physical skills do. Unless you have an obvious physical limitation, your game may be more versatile than you think.

Step 3. Add lead at 3 and 9. I recommend adding about 5-10 grams total (about 5 grams for starting stock swingweight of 330, plus an additional gram for every 5 kg-cm^2 drop in stock swingweight below that) with two layers of strips on each side. It is better to use 2 layers of 4" strips than to spread one layer over an 8-inch length because the former will increase swingweight less. Also, significantly better torsional stability can be achieved by putting the lead on the outside of the frame rather than the inside, since the change in moment of inertia about the longitudinal axis is proportional to the square of the distance from added lead to the centerline. Use ¼”-wide strips on each side of the string plane. Eight grams is a rough guideline. The total amount that you add here can be adjusted later when you troubleshoot your setup. But I definitely advise against adding more than 10-12 g at this location, since the swingweight will likely become unmanageable.

Step 4. Measure the new weight and balance of your racquet.

Step 5. Calculate the amount of additional weight to be added using this equation:

m’ = M – m

m’ = additional mass to be added, in ounces.
M = desired final static weight in ounces.
m = static weight measured in step 4, in ounces.

Step 6. Calculate final balance point using this equation:

R = 44.57 / sqrt(M)
R = distance to final balance point from butt end.
M = desired final static weight.

Step 7. Calculate location to add concentrated mass m’ using this equation:

r’ = (MR – mr)/m’
r’ = location of center of mass for m’, in inches from butt end.
r = distance to balance point in inches measured in step 4.

Step 8. Add mass m’ at location r’ by wrapping lead tape around handle (under grip). Make sure that the center of mass for m’ is within 0.1” of location r’. As other racquet technicians such as John Cauthen have correctly noted, the location of this mass is critical to having a high-performance setup. The value for r’ determined by the above equation will optimize the plough-through effect of the racquet for a male player of normal strength. Moving the mass m’ a quarter inch up will likely decrease power due to higher swingweight, while moving it a quarter inch down will likely decrease power due to lower hitting weight. For best results, the total width of the leaded zone centered around r’ should not exceed 1 inch.

Step 9. Adjust tension. This depolarized leaded setup may be higher powered than your regular setup. If so, an increase in string tension will be required to optimize control. For final weights around 12.5 oz., you likely will be fine with the tension that works for you in the stock frame. But for setups over 13.0 oz., an increase of 5 lbs or so will probably be necessary.

Step 10. You are ready for a playtest.

Step 11. Troubleshooting your setup:

If your frame feels overpowered or underpowered, there are two preferred options. The first option is to adjust the string tension. Another option is to adjust the desired final static weight and repeat steps 2 through 8. If your racquet is overpowered, a lower static weight will reduce the power. And if it is underpowered, increasing static weight will help.

You can use the amount of weight at the 3 and 9 region to tune your swingweight. Increasing the weight at the 3 and 9 region will flatten your serve and groundstrokes, while decreasing the weight will add spin. I recommend making these adjustments in 1 gram increments. Also, you might get better results if you repeat steps 2 through 8 after you tweak the amount of lead at 3 and 9.

Lastly: remember that these are just general guidelines to get you started on your way to a sweet feeling setup that will best suit your game. Don’t be afraid to keep tweaking things.

-----------------

In the future, I plan to contribute some guidelines to customizing your racquet with well-balanced polarized setups also. I have so far designed a number of well-balanced polarized setups with specific frames. But polarized setups are more sensitive to the weight and balance of the starting platform frame, so it is more complicated to devise a general template like the one above.

Also, please understand that I will not be hanging around to read TT posts anymore, so don’t take it personal if I don’t respond to a question.

mutt
06-18-2006, 04:11 AM
What you means by polarized and depolarized?

dmastous
06-18-2006, 04:38 AM
My guess is a depolarized racquet is one that is evenly balance. Neither head light or head heavy.

mislav
06-18-2006, 05:36 AM
I understood the terms polarized and depolarized as in having the weight of the racquet distributed either on each of the ends or more equally throughout the length of the racquet.

jackcrawford
06-18-2006, 05:47 AM
Check the ATP stats - Nadal is the best returner around.

ohplease
06-18-2006, 05:51 AM
So why don't Federer and Nadal play a similar style?

travlerajm continues to have bits of good advice here and there - but the whole "rackets are destiny" argument continus to wilt in the face of even the most mild reality checks.

louis netman
06-18-2006, 10:17 AM
My guess is a depolarized racquet is one that is evenly balance. Neither head light or head heavy.

Grab two identical frames that have been modded to increase static weight. For example both are 13 oz. #1 is tweaked to be "Polarized," it's less HL (e.g. 13 oz 4pts HL). #2 is tweaked to be "Depolarized," it's the same static weight, but more HL (e.g. 13 oz 10 pts HL).....as a result, swingweights will be considerably different.

travlerajm
06-18-2006, 02:29 PM
Grab two identical frames that have been modded to increase static weight. For example both are 13 oz. #1 is tweaked to be "Polarized," it's less HL (e.g. 13 oz 4pts HL). #2 is tweaked to be "Depolarized," it's the same static weight, but more HL (e.g. 13 oz 10 pts HL).....as a result, swingweights will be considerably different.

This is not correct. If two 13-oz. frames have the same static weight and same balance point, then then the one that is more polarized will have the higher swingweight. It would not be possible to play at the ATP level with a 13-oz.+ racquet unless it is "depolarized" to have low polar moment of inertia, because the swingweight would be too high otherwise.

The degree of polarization has nothing to do with how HL a frame is.

kabob
06-18-2006, 04:53 PM
This is not correct. If two 13-oz. frames have the same static weight and same balance point, then then the one that is more polarized will have the higher swingweight. It would not be possible to play at the ATP level with a 13-oz.+ racquet unless it is "depolarized" to have low polar moment of inertia, because the swingweight would be too high otherwise.

The degree of polarization has nothing to do with how HL a frame is.
Then to what does degree of polarization refer? Sorry, I'm not an engineer, please explain in layman's terms.

sureshs
06-18-2006, 05:16 PM
Hey you are back. Very short retirement.

Ztalin
06-18-2006, 05:24 PM
Then to what does degree of polarization refer? Sorry, I'm not an engineer, please explain in layman's terms.

Polarization is a term that he's using to represent the concentration of mass on a body. For instance, is the weight concentrated on an object's outside (ends), or middle, or is it evenly balanced? Weight at the outside of an object leads to a higher moment of inertia. This is what he's referring to with polarization.

louis netman
06-18-2006, 05:42 PM
I have a Volkl C9 at 12.8oz and 12 pts HL and a Tour 10 MP also at 12.8 and 12 pts HL.....The Tour 10 feels like it has higher SW (don't know exactly as I can not fit my modded butts into the RDC SW machine). Am I correct in saying that the T10 MP has a higher degree of polarization (more polarized)?

Z-Man
06-18-2006, 05:46 PM
Yeah, I'm lost too--explain what makes a racquet more or less polarized. My sunglasses are polarized. Political parties are polarized. I think you're on to something here, but I can't decide if it's something real or if it's like "A Beautiful Mind". Is a polarized racquet head-heavy? Is the weight more concentrated in the ends? I agree that different setups encourage different types of play.

kabob
06-18-2006, 05:48 PM
Polarization is a term that he's using to represent the concentration of mass on a body. For instance, is the weight concentrated on an object's outside (ends), or middle, or is it evenly balanced? Weight at the outside of an object leads to a higher moment of inertia. This is what he's referring to with polarization.
Okay, so explain how that applies here to racquet technology?

The Ripper
06-18-2006, 05:53 PM
I've read a lot about the weighting of rackets but never heard anyone use the term "polarization" or "depolarization" to describe anything about a tennis racket. Why can't this be discussed in customary terms like headlight/headheavy, swingweight and static weight? Has anyone else heard of a "polarized" racket?

louis netman
06-18-2006, 06:11 PM
Also, please understand that I will not be hanging around to read TT posts anymore, so donít take it personal if I donít respond to a question.

louis netman
06-18-2006, 06:20 PM
Thought it would be a fun experiment, but it wouldn't pan out for me anyway. After I add my birch bevels, leather, overgrip and tape to expand the butt, I'd have no more margin to add the polarization mass to point R on the handle.... unless I started out with a 9 or 10 oz racket, of course. Anyone know of any flexy 9 or 10 ouncers?


BTW, in the mod step #2, I think target swingweight would be a better goal to strive for over target static weight...

Ztalin
06-18-2006, 06:24 PM
Okay, so explain how that applies here to racquet technology?

Because somethign with a higher moment of inertia will produce more rotational momentum, and therefore transfer more momentum onto the tennis ball.

Rrotational momentum = I*rotational velocity.

I=rotational inertia. It's a measure of how far the average weight of a rotating object is distributed from its center.

MTChong
06-18-2006, 06:41 PM
Thought it would be a fun experiment, but it wouldn't pan out for me anyway. After I add my birch bevels, leather, overgrip and tape to expand the butt, I'd have no more margin to add the polarization mass to point R on the handle.... unless I started out with a 9 or 10 oz racket, of course. Anyone know of any flexy 9 or 10 ouncers?


BTW, in the mod step #2, I think target swingweight would be a better goal to strive for over target static weight...

Not sure if it is that light, but I remember the specs of the nFury indicating that it is really flexible and light.

kabob
06-18-2006, 07:05 PM
Because somethign with a higher moment of inertia will produce more rotational momentum, and therefore transfer more momentum onto the tennis ball.

Rrotational momentum = I*rotational velocity.

I=rotational inertia. It's a measure of how far the average weight of a rotating object is distributed from its center.
I don't want a scientific explanation, sheesh. I want to know how polarization is important in a racquet, what areas of the racquet we're talking, how exactly you're supposed to be modifying the racquet and, finally, how this all affects play. What does weight distribution mean to an object with a rounded hoop and a handle?

Zverev
06-18-2006, 07:58 PM
Prince's "Thriple Threat" technology would be a fine example of polarised weight distribution.
Polarised technology is great, but obviously more expensive.
IMO, manufacturers are still at very primitive level of racquet technology.
When they will be capable of making a racquet with optimal weight distribution for specific criteria, and at managable cost, call me.
For that they need new kind of materials, where they can manage strenth and density, and flex of any specific point of racquet body.
So far all their "technologies" besides graphite are gimmicks.

HyperHorse
06-18-2006, 08:43 PM
thanks for the insightful post....
makes a lot of sense, particularly when you talk about Federer...

Ztalin
06-18-2006, 09:03 PM
I don't want a scientific explanation, sheesh. I want to know how polarization is important in a racquet, what areas of the racquet we're talking, how exactly you're supposed to be modifying the racquet and, finally, how this all affects play. What does weight distribution mean to an object with a rounded hoop and a handle?

How about you do a little research... look up what inertia is on wikipedia or something. I explained it to you how I know how to. Not my job to do everything.

kabob
06-18-2006, 09:31 PM
How about you do a little research... look up what inertia is on wikipedia or something. I explained it to you how I know how to. Not my job to do everything.
Then why bother saying anything? You didn't say a word that I could apply in terms of tennis :rolleyes:

Ztalin
06-18-2006, 09:57 PM
Then why bother saying anything? You didn't say a word that I could apply in terms of tennis :rolleyes:

You don't know what momentum is? MORE momentum on the ball? Do I need to quote myself? Here, I'll give you a definition.

Momentum: The product of the mass times the velocity of an object.

In layman's terms: Higher inertia = more momentum on ball = higher ball speed!

I don't mean to be a dick, but I "didn't say a word that I could apply in terms of tennis?"

You don't understand how momentum transfer applies to tennis? Momentum of a ball? Oi...

Woodstock_Tennis
06-18-2006, 10:25 PM
Interesting post, but think somethings wrong.

My Racquet is 360g (12.857 oz) and a balance point of 12....

If I want to achieve 13.6 onces as a finishing weight your equations gives you an r' of 19, which is way past the point of the handle.

Edit: might be a little off, did it that in my head

But using my real racquet which is 360g and a 11.5 balance point, if I want a finishing weight of 13.5 you get a r'=24.

kabob
06-19-2006, 01:29 AM
You don't know what momentum is? MORE momentum on the ball? Do I need to quote myself? Here, I'll give you a definition.

Momentum: The product of the mass times the velocity of an object.

In layman's terms: Higher inertia = more momentum on ball = higher ball speed!

I don't mean to be a dick, but I "didn't say a word that I could apply in terms of tennis?"

You don't understand how momentum transfer applies to tennis? Momentum of a ball? Oi...
Holy crap, I KNOW WHAT PHYSICS IS, I TOOK COLLEGE PHYSICS IN HIGH SCHOOL. What I'm not understanding is how this weight distribution thing is being enacted on a tennis ball during play and what modifications you can do to the racquet to enhance play.

Or maybe I just tuned out the first post in this thread. Oh well.

travlerajm
06-19-2006, 07:56 AM
Interesting post, but think somethings wrong.

My Racquet is 360g (12.857 oz) and a balance point of 12....

If I want to achieve 13.6 onces as a finishing weight your equations gives you an r' of 19, which is way past the point of the handle.

Edit: might be a little off, did it that in my head

But using my real racquet which is 360g and a 11.5 balance point, if I want a finishing weight of 13.5 you get a r'=24.

You will not be able to depolarize your racquet without first removing the weight that you have added to the handle (your starting point is 16 pts HL!).
Your extremely low balance point means that you are starting with too much weight near the butt, which is inefficient for power generation. The goal of this type of weighting is to maximize the efficiency of any added weight.

The equations are correct. If you start with an unmodified stock racquet, r' will usually be between 6 and 9 inches.

Woodstock_Tennis
06-23-2006, 03:39 PM
Everyone should try this...

sureshs
06-23-2006, 03:53 PM
The specs of the new Slazenger NX1 were posted on another thread, and it is a good example of the move to polarization in player's racquets. Lighter and bigger head than the Pro X1 it will replace, along with a HH balance.

Roforot
06-23-2006, 06:25 PM
Agree w/ many of the above posts, "polarization" as it applies to a tennis racquet is not clearly defined by the OP. Does it refer to headlight? Apparently not? How does one know if a racquet is polarized or depolarized?

travlerajm
06-23-2006, 10:36 PM
Agree w/ many of the above posts, "polarization" as it applies to a tennis racquet is not clearly defined by the OP. Does it refer to headlight? Apparently not? How does one know if a racquet is polarized or depolarized?

I added a brief definition of "polarized" in the OP. A racquet is more polarized if the weight is distributed more toward the ends. A racquet is less polarized (or "depolarized" ) if the weight is distributed more toward the middle.

To summarize, if two racquets have the same weight and same balance, but one is more polarized, the more polarized frame will have higher swingweight.

And, if two racquets have the same balance and same swingweight, but one is more polarized, the more polarized frame will have lower static weight and lower hitting weight, which translates to lower power level. Thus, the more polarized a racquet is, the lower the tension must be to compensate for the lower power level.

And, if two racquets are set up and strung with the same weight, same balance, and same power level, but one racquet is more polarized, the more polarized setup will generate more spin but less directional accuracy.

I hope this clarification helps.

Roforot
06-24-2006, 12:27 AM
Ah, thanks a lot, this explanation adds a lot to my understanding! And this adds another dimension in choosing racquets.

My standard frame now is a Yonex SRD-Tour 90; I had built the grip up 2sizes as well as added some weight to the head of the frame; hence leading to a Polarized setup... and your observation is correct... I am able to whip off some great angles and spin even compared to other spinfriendly racquets like the PD+...

The other racquet that I've been tinkering with is an o3 Tour MP... I believe this frame is more depolarized, and I enjoyed groundstrokes w/ this racquet, but not serving... From reading on this forum, other people had improved this by adding lead. I choose to add lead to the throat b/c I didn't want to mess w/ the O-ports or make the racquet headheavy... further depolarization. I will test the effects of my adjustments this weekend. Depolarization is favored by S&V, does that mean it tends to make racquets easier to serve?

Thanks again for your input.

travlerajm
06-24-2006, 01:13 AM
Ah, thanks a lot, this explanation adds a lot to my understanding! And this adds another dimension in choosing racquets.

My standard frame now is a Yonex SRD-Tour 90; I had built the grip up 2sizes as well as added some weight to the head of the frame; hence leading to a Polarized setup... and your observation is correct... I am able to whip off some great angles and spin even compared to other spinfriendly racquets like the PD+...

The other racquet that I've been tinkering with is an o3 Tour MP... I believe this frame is more depolarized, and I enjoyed groundstrokes w/ this racquet, but not serving... From reading on this forum, other people had improved this by adding lead. I choose to add lead to the throat b/c I didn't want to mess w/ the O-ports or make the racquet headheavy... further depolarization. I will test the effects of my adjustments this weekend. Depolarization is favored by S&V, does that mean it tends to make racquets easier to serve?

Thanks again for your input.

It's not quite that simple. Here are some more guidelines:

Heavier racquets are better for volleying because they are more stable; and maneuverability (low swingweight) is better for volleying. A depolarized setup allows the racquet to be much heavier while still maintaining a relatively low swingweight. Thus, depolarized setups are better for volleys. Also, depolarized setups allow higher tension, which gives better directional accuracy on volleys.

A depolarized setup is best for flat serves or very hard spin serves because it maximizes power for a given swingweight while maintaining directional accuracy. However, a polarized setup would be better for an American twist serve, because that type of serve requires lots of rpm to be effective. Most of the best hard servers like Sampras and Roddick use more depolarized setups, but Arthurs and Rafter prefer more polarized setups because they rely more on spinny kick/twist serves rather than power.

A racquet that is best for your serve is a racquet that has a swingweight that matches your strength. Most people can serve hardest with a swingweight in the mid 340s. If your swingweight is too low, it will reduce your accuracy as well as power. But a swingweight too high will also reduce your accuracy and your ability to add spin to your serve.

Povl Carstensen
06-24-2006, 03:13 AM
I guess polarisation is what John Cauthen talks about when he says bipolar massdistribution. In his case he advocates weight in the top of the handle and at the top of the hoop. I think it works, but have not gone to the extremes of adding 40 grams or so at the handle. I also think that some rackets need a little weight at 3 & 9 for torsional stability.

ACK4wd
06-24-2006, 04:26 AM
I'm a little confused by how to adjust a raquet to this formula for improving serve and volley. For example a lighter raquet like a Babolat VS NCT Control 9.6 oz & 4.2 pts head heavy - would I be aiming at quite a bit of leading up? I couldn't imagine playing with a static weight over 12& 1/2 oz. Under this formula what would be the result of final specs. I would be greatly honored by your assistance travlrajm.

Amone
06-24-2006, 05:27 AM
I would have to agree with ACK, though not in the weight comment, in that it would be GREAT to hear how to set up a racquet for SV. I've been running through some of your theory, TravelerJam, so when I'm all done with that, I'll get back to you on the results of my tests. Right now I'm still in the prep stages, and then it'll be a few weeks before I can be totally finished. But if you could get some idealized SV specs, then I'd be much obliged, because I don't enjoy the baseline game that your specs would most likely aide, and I would prefer the final word what I should be using to increase my happiness in that respect when the time comes.

Admittedly, you say that the current setup is great for SV, but I just wanted to make sure, because I would certainly not want to shortchange you by using the wrong theory.

travlerajm
06-24-2006, 10:42 AM
I would have to agree with ACK, though not in the weight comment, in that it would be GREAT to hear how to set up a racquet for SV. I've been running through some of your theory, TravelerJam, so when I'm all done with that, I'll get back to you on the results of my tests. Right now I'm still in the prep stages, and then it'll be a few weeks before I can be totally finished. But if you could get some idealized SV specs, then I'd be much obliged, because I don't enjoy the baseline game that your specs would most likely aide, and I would prefer the final word what I should be using to increase my happiness in that respect when the time comes.

Admittedly, you say that the current setup is great for SV, but I just wanted to make sure, because I would certainly not want to shortchange you by using the wrong theory.

I've tweaked the instructions in the OP so that the weight added to the hoop will take into account the starting stock swingweight. For best SV results, apply the formulas and shoot for a static weight in the neighborhood of 13 oz.

travlerajm
06-24-2006, 10:56 AM
I'm a little confused by how to adjust a raquet to this formula for improving serve and volley. For example a lighter raquet like a Babolat VS NCT Control 9.6 oz & 4.2 pts head heavy - would I be aiming at quite a bit of leading up? I couldn't imagine playing with a static weight over 12& 1/2 oz. Under this formula what would be the result of final specs. I would be greatly honored by your assistance travlrajm.

the idea behind "depolarization" is to make your racquet heavier with minimal increase in swingweight. This is ideal for SV because you want the heaviest racquet that you can still handle. If you follow the instructions and aim for a racquet setup over 12.5 oz., your volleys will be much much easier to control. If you are used to a 9.6 oz. racquet, you may need to adjust your technique, since you are probably accustomed to swinging at your volleys or even "wristing" a bit to generate power. After you add several ounces of lead, you will simply need to put the racquet in front of the ball and let the ball bounce off it - a much easier way to control your volley (You may need to ditch the wristy habits that your light racquet gave you).

BTW, here's the first feedback for this setup posted by a forum member who tried it:

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=105956

ACK4wd
06-24-2006, 04:04 PM
I think you've discovered the phi for racquets, travlerajm - okay you only live once - 'm in, i'll try the extra 1/2 oz to 13

starting weight 9.6 0z w/298 swingweight

i'm to add aprox 10 grams at 3&9 no more than 4" strips (preferably on the outside of the frame) & then lead up to 13 oz

here's my math so far:

m' = 3.05 oz
M = 13
m = 9.6 oz + 10 grams (0.35oz) = 9.95 oz

R = 44.57 / sqrt (13) = 12.3615
r' = (13*12.3615) - 9.95*r)

stuck on r --> Mathamatically, if I'm starting out 4.2 pts head heavy & I attach the 4" lead exactly centered @ 3&9 what would be the value of r?

I'm using signum ppp 17 does that effect the values?

I how would i calculate this?

And heck yes to replacing those squash shots - cheers by the way, that you are back.

travlerajm
06-24-2006, 07:45 PM
I think you've discovered the phi for racquets, travlerajm - okay you only live once - 'm in, i'll try the extra 1/2 oz to 13

starting weight 9.6 0z w/298 swingweight

i'm to add aprox 10 grams at 3&9 no more than 4" strips (preferably on the outside of the frame) & then lead up to 13 oz

here's my math so far:

m' = 3.05 oz
M = 13
m = 9.6 oz + 10 grams (0.35oz) = 9.95 oz

R = 44.57 / sqrt (13) = 12.3615
r' = (13*12.3615) - 9.95*r)

stuck on r --> Mathamatically, if I'm starting out 4.2 pts head heavy & I attach the 4" lead exactly centered @ 3&9 what would be the value of r?

I'm using signum ppp 17 does that effect the values?

I how would i calculate this?

And heck yes to replacing those squash shots - cheers by the way, that you are back.

You can simply measure the balance point r by balancing your racquet on the edge of a ruler, then measuring the distance from the butt end to the balance point. I'll do the calculation by estimating that r = 14.25", but it's better to measure it. (I estimated it by assuming that the center of mass of the added hoop weight is at 21" from the butt, so r = (298*14.025+10*21)/(298+10) = 14.25".

r' = (MR - mr)/m' = [(13*12.3615) - (9.95*14.25)/(3.05) = 6.2"

I would suggest using 2 layers of 5" strips at 3 and 9.

Since 3.05 oz. is a LOT of lead = 86.5 g = 173" of lead tape, you'll have no choice but to spread the handle lead out a little bit. If you have a one-hander, a bulky lump at 6.2" would not be a problem, but if you use a 2hb, I would recommend dividing it into 32 strips of 5.4" length. You should be able to fit 8 strips side by side on the handle under the grip, so you would have 4 layers. Or if you want a flatter grip shape, you could use 2 strips side by side on each edge with 8 layers. Or perhaps use the the Cauthen method and use thicker lead sheeting? Or maybe sand down your grip first before you apply the formulas?

louis netman
06-25-2006, 02:36 AM
I used the formula for a Volkl C8 and C9. My usual setup is about 12.9 oz & 12-14 pts HL. My new "formula" rackets felt much heftier than my previously modded C10s and were 12.9oz and were about 7-8 pts HL, a significant increase in SW...

Test results: I'm currently injured and my groundies were clocked at 90-100mph and waaay flatter than normal. There was some windscreen damage on the receiving end of the court. Serves were 120's with little effort. I was sticking volleys into the ground. Important note: I will not be able to carry this lumber effectively throughout an entire match. End of experiment.

Travlerajm: Now that I have located r, can I reduce the weight to get it into my SW comfort zone (very important to my on-court effectiveness)? I realize that r changes when the target static wt changes, but will I attain any benefit from adding ANY weight to previous r (which ended up being slightly above the handle on both test frames)?

travlerajm
06-25-2006, 10:33 PM
I used the formula for a Volkl C8 and C9. My usual setup is about 12.9 oz & 12-14 pts HL. My new "formula" rackets felt much heftier than my previously modded C10s and were 12.9oz and were about 7-8 pts HL, a significant increase in SW...

Test results: I'm currently injured and my groundies were clocked at 90-100mph and waaay flatter than normal. There was some windscreen damage on the receiving end of the court. Serves were 120's with little effort. I was sticking volleys into the ground. Important note: I will not be able to carry this lumber effectively throughout an entire match. End of experiment.

Travlerajm: Now that I have located r, can I reduce the weight to get it into my SW comfort zone (very important to my on-court effectiveness)? I realize that r changes when the target static wt changes, but will I attain any benefit from adding ANY weight to previous r (which ended up being slightly above the handle on both test frames)?

There are three good choices that you might try. The 1st option is to keep the static weight the same, but further depolarize your setup. You can do this by subtracting a few of the added grams from the hoop, then recalculating a new r' (which will be more in the throat region). Thus your static weight and balance will be the same as before, but you swingweight will be lower. Your power level won't change too much, but you'll lose a little torsional stability on volleys.

The 2nd option is to keep the same weight in the hoop, but shoot for a lower static weight. The problem with this option is that most of the added swingweight comes from the added wt at 3 and 9, so you won't be able to drop the SW that much.

The 3rd option (probably the best) is to combine the first two options above. Thus, maybe try for 2 fewer grams in the hoop, and then shoot for a static weight of maybe 12.6 oz., and then apply the formulas.

Punisha
06-25-2006, 11:57 PM
OK, i understand all the theory to this, but customizing my RDX mid (11.8 ounces) to 13 ounces??? How do i go about that???

gerli
06-26-2006, 04:02 AM
Please help me with the calculation of R.
In your example R=44,57/sqrt(13)=12,3615 how do you came to 12,3615???

GroundMaster
06-26-2006, 04:37 AM
travlerajm, depolarization sounds like a very interesting concept. I'm definitely interested in increasing the mass of my racquet to help on volleys, but do not want to aggravate my old TE injury on groundies.

I must go and digest this thread further to work out my setup.

ACK4wd
06-26-2006, 09:18 AM
Please help me with the calculation of R.
In your example R=44,57/sqrt(13)=12,3615 how do you came to 12,3615???

I think I can help:
R equals the constant (44.57) divided by the square root of the target weight in ounces - the square root of 13 by a calculator is 3.605.
So 44.57 divided by 3.605 is roughly 12.3615

fast_server
06-28-2006, 04:30 AM
I've been reading these posts & other posts about where to add lead and why. This stuff is great. The man is 100% right on. I just jumped up from the lower rung to the top. I've worked hard to break in the lower ranks for the past 5 years. This guys a freaking genius. I have racquets set up for conditions & the type of player that I'm playing and because of my level of play I have enough racquets to do this. He's right on the mark - this is exactly what has jumped my game above the juniors. Take it from someone who's sponsored, balance your racquet according to physics and practice. This really is an amazing formula. Sorry, if i don't respond much, I've got to get back to the courts.

tennis_nerd22
06-28-2006, 05:33 AM
I've been reading these posts & other posts about where to add lead and why. This stuff is great. The man is 100% right on. I just jumped up from the lower rung to the top. I've worked hard to break in the lower ranks for the past 5 years. This guys a freaking genius. I have racquets set up for conditions & the type of player that I'm playing and because of my level of play I have enough racquets to do this. He's right on the mark - this is exactly what has jumped my game above the juniors. Take it from someone who's sponsored, balance your racquet according to physics and practice. This really is an amazing formula. Sorry, if i don't respond much, I've got to get back to the courts.

one sec, i'd be careful to believe this post guys. he's a new user, and this was his only post, travlerajm might have made up the new user... just be careful

looseswing
06-28-2006, 08:44 AM
So if we try this formula we would be reducing our spin? That might be a problem for me because I hit with pretty minimal spin as it is.

sureshs
06-28-2006, 08:59 AM
one sec, i'd be careful to believe this post guys. he's a new user, and this was his only post, travlerajm might have made up the new user... just be careful

He has made up several ones before I am pretty sure! So this guy went from a nobody to a great player in a week after reading about the formulas. You better believe it! There was another new guy prasing him, etc.

travelerajm: you have great ideas, but you are losing credibility with these phony avatars.

Roforot
06-28-2006, 06:15 PM
Traveljam,

I've tried to Depolarization on O3 tour MP to see if it would help me in how I could serve. I'll confess that I did some rounding on numbers based on the lead and swingweights I had available. But I did not really see the benefit I was hoping (though I'll agree it made volleys more stable/powerful) in that I can really only hit looping 2nd serves well, but feel I have to "overmuscle" it to hit aggressive serves flat or w/ spin.

Anyway, I think my normal setup on the SRD tour ended up being polarized b/c of the grip building and counterweighting.

I'll give it another try w/ a bucket of balls, but if that doesn't improve, I want to try to create a depolarization setup. Do you have any #s or formulas for how much we should add?

Rough handed, I was going to add 12gms to the head and 6gms under the overgrip as a start. But that's based again on what I have available (3gm swingweights)!


Thanks.

gerli
06-28-2006, 11:45 PM
@traveljam
I also did your customisation.
Racquet: Head pro tour 630
M=13,474
I added 8grams at 3 & 9 (2 layers)
m=12,346
mī=1,129
Balance point is: r=13,03in

So what happened ist that i get a very little rī.
rī= 0,415 in

I wrapped 1,13oz in the 0,415 area which is the whole weight in the butt end.
At the end it feels good and very head light.

Did i make everything right and which racquet is similar to these spec.??

Thanks for your answer.

@ACK4wd: thanks for the information

travlerajm
06-29-2006, 12:08 AM
Depolarization is an interesting exercise. I used it to create some nice setups, but each time, there was always a minor drawback (for me it was usually the spin serve, which I could never get quite right). So I've moved on and found a better formula with a more polarized, higher relative twistweight, pro-style setup. Here are details of my favorite setup:

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=106736

travlerajm
06-29-2006, 12:10 AM
@traveljam
I also did your customisation.
Racquet: Head pro tour 630
M=13,474
I added 8grams at 3 & 9 (2 layers)
m=12,346
mī=1,129
Balance point is: r=13,03in

So what happened ist that i get a very little rī.
rī= 0,415 in

I wrapped 1,13oz in the 0,415 area which is the whole weight in the butt end.
At the end it feels good and very head light.

Did i make everything right and which racquet is similar to these spec.??

Thanks for your answer.

@ACK4wd: thanks for the information

It sounds like there is an error in you calculations. Sorry, but I don't know the specs of your stock frame in order to help you.

gerli
06-29-2006, 12:33 AM
It sounds like there is an error in you calculations. Sorry, but I don't know the specs of your stock frame in order to help you.

Hello!
My stock weight is 12,063 with a balance point of 12,76 in.

travlerajm
06-29-2006, 01:04 AM
Hello!
My stock weight is 12,063 with a balance point of 12,76 in.

m = 12.063 + 8/28.35 = 12.35 oz.
r = (12.063*12.76 + (8/28.35)*20.25)/(12.35) = 12.93".

Let's say you want a 13 oz. static weight, then M = 13.0.

R = 44.57/sqrt(13) = 12.36".

m' = M - m = 0.64 oz.

r' = (MR - mr)/m' = (13*12.36 - 12.35*12.93)/0.64 = 1.55"

Hmm, maybe your calc was correct. That means that your stick is very unique in that it already has a pro-style balance point unlike most stock racquets. This weighting technique would actually be considered "polarizing" for your racquet (but that's not necessarily a bad thing).

ACK4wd
06-29-2006, 06:11 AM
Travlerajm - Just wanted to give you feedback.

Short answer - thank you very much travlerajm for the good advice about why, where and how much weight to add to customize my racquet. It worked out great well for me.

Long answer - It worked out well because I followed all of his postings about racquet physics. So I surrendered some spin potential because I added weight to de-polarized balance, but I compensated by getting a larger (104sqin) more open stringbed (16x1 8 ). The racquet is not as flexible as recommended, but it was what I wanted. I also brought my grip size down from a size. Serves were sensational - they boomed and didn't spray like usual. (This for a 3.0 with a tendency to double fault was huge) The other part that was great was that there was still plenty of spin available when I needed it.

13 ozs wasn't as heavy as I thought. I was able to play 2 sets without problem.

As for the grip part. I measured the amount & weight of plastic "goop" with the fishing weights and dropped them into the cotton balls I stuffed the weights and poured the goop at the appropriate balance point. Waited 24 hrs for it to dry. Didn't have to remove the grip, shave down nor build up any grip.

It was an inexpensive experiment that worked. It has become a fast favorite.

Thank you for your time to reply and help travlerajm.

louis netman
06-29-2006, 11:37 PM
Just did a mod on a 300g that was m=12.6 (including recommended 3&9 weight) balance pt of 12" (and about 12pts HL). M = 13.0
After doing the calculation, r'= 23.6 That's about .4 oz @ 2:00 and 10:00...Is it typical to add the weight to the hoop with your formula?

travlerajm
06-30-2006, 12:35 AM
Just did a mod on a 300g that was m=12.6 (including recommended 3&9 weight) balance pt of 12" (and about 12pts HL). M = 13.0
After doing the calculation, r'= 23.6 That's about .4 oz @ 2:00 and 10:00...Is it typical to add the weight to the hoop with your formula?

That won't work because it will push the swingweight up too high. It means that the 300g has too much mass near the butt to customize with a depolarized setup.

I'd suggest instead trying the customization procedure in my more recent thread.

Jonnyf
06-30-2006, 05:47 AM
Dear Travlerajm. Im so sorry you're formula's haveseriously miffed me if you have the time please please e-mail me on forrest.jonny@gmail.com honestly i really want to try this but im just confused now.

Thanks alot man.

Yours Sincerely
JF..

Fist
08-04-2006, 12:34 PM
Ive plugged in my numbers at least 5 times and continue to get a negative value for r'. If anyone could tell me if Im making a mistake, I would appreciate it. Here are my values for my liquidmetal radical mp. I have 6 g total at 3 and 9 (3 g per side), protective head tape, a vibe dampener, and an overgrip. All told, this setup is 1 pt. headlight (13.375 balance point), total weight of 11.95 oz (338.4 g), and a desired weight of 12.5 oz. Again, any help would be greatly appreciated. thanks and take care.

oray777
08-04-2006, 03:59 PM
If more mass in the head area would equal more speed on the ball why not just get a racquet that is swingweight heavy (13.0 oz) and head heavy?

BigServer1
08-04-2006, 04:28 PM
travler- I have a question...I have my flexpoint prestige mp 98", 4-5/8 grip, 12oz strung. This is my current custom setup: Volkl leather grip, wilson pro overgrip, and 10g of lead at 3 and 9. It plays right around 13oz, and is around 10 pts head light. Is this a setup that is condusive to success? It feels good, but with all of your math and science behind your ideas, I have lost confidence in my setup...Let me know, thanks a lot.

travlerajm
08-04-2006, 06:53 PM
travler- I have a question...I have my flexpoint prestige mp 98", 4-5/8 grip, 12oz strung. This is my current custom setup: Volkl leather grip, wilson pro overgrip, and 10g of lead at 3 and 9. It plays right around 13oz, and is around 10 pts head light. Is this a setup that is condusive to success? It feels good, but with all of your math and science behind your ideas, I have lost confidence in my setup...Let me know, thanks a lot.

That setup is very similar to a typical ATP pro setup. If it feels good, stick with it.

travlerajm
08-04-2006, 07:13 PM
Ive plugged in my numbers at least 5 times and continue to get a negative value for r'. If anyone could tell me if Im making a mistake, I would appreciate it. Here are my values for my liquidmetal radical mp. I have 6 g total at 3 and 9 (3 g per side), protective head tape, a vibe dampener, and an overgrip. All told, this setup is 1 pt. headlight (13.375 balance point), total weight of 11.95 oz (338.4 g), and a desired weight of 12.5 oz. Again, any help would be greatly appreciated. thanks and take care.

It just means that your stock racquet has a longer balance point that most players' racquets. I would try adding the 0.55 oz to the buttcap region if you want to maximize spin, or add it along the handle if you want a more solid and powerful feel. The end result will be 2-3 pts more HH than the average pro balance, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. I've shown in another thread that pros with more HH balance points tend to have better rankings. Your new setup will be very similar to the Agassi setup!

I'd be very curious to hear how it plays - I haven't tried the Agassi setup yet because I don't own a stock players frame that has a light enough handle to be set up that HH without making the swingweight humongous.

Fist
08-05-2006, 07:48 AM
thanks for the information even though it doesnt quite make sense to me that a racket that starts 2 points head light is "too balanced" already to meet the needs of the formula. anyway, was wondering what the * meant in your other formula. yes, I posted it on that thread yesterday or the day before, but received no answer. thanks again.

zAllianceBmx
08-05-2006, 07:56 AM
wow. most of you have got to be kidding me. all this crap isnt going to make you a better player.

Lloyd Barcenilla
08-05-2006, 08:50 AM
The ATP pro landscape is becoming more polarized. What I mean by this is that the ATP tour used to be the exclusive realm of players who played heavy racquets with low moment of inertia. Today, most pros still use the classic depolarized setup. But we are now witnessing the dawn of the ďpolarizer.Ē Polarizers use racquet setups with more polarized weight distributions - i.e., weight distributed more toward the ends.

The polarized setup is used by players like Federer, Nadal, and Davydenko. Polarized setups have very low hitting weight to swingweight ratio. Because of the relatively low hitting weight, lower tension is required to compensate for the power deficit. The advantage of this type of setup is increased spin. So polarized setups are required to hit the ultra-sharp angles that Federer is known for (According to Greg Ravenís site, Fedís racquet has a higher swingweight than a retail Tour 90, but itís static weight is the same. It is therefore more polarized than the retail version). And Nadalís polarized setup (15 grams under his bumper plus 5 grams in the butt) help him generate the tremendous spins that have helped him to dominate the clay court circuit.

Im 14 and play from the base line with heavy spin. DO you think a polarized setup would be for me? when you say there tension is low, how many lbs are you talking about?

Thanks

Lloyd

w00gy
08-18-2006, 02:25 AM
So which stock frames are polarized naturally

travlerajm
09-20-2006, 09:13 AM
So which stock frames are polarized naturally

A few examples of polarized frames:
nBlade
NXG
O3
Any other prince with "triple threat" technology
APD

takeuchi
09-22-2006, 04:32 PM
Wow I just added about an ounce of lead to my pog mid and my groundstrokes have never felt better. I think it slowed my fast swing down to a more comfortable and consistent speed. I'm having troubles getting racquet head speed on the serve though. My serve felt like I am almost arming the ball more. I just couldn't get that smack feel like i could before.

I added i think 16 inches of lead(.5") in the trapdoor buttcap, and lead all around the hoop about 34inches worth (basically one layer all the way around the inner hoop). I'm surprised how I am able to handle the weight as I'm not very strong (5'9: 145lbs).

I think the balance is around 12 3/8ths and i'm guessing i'm weighing in around 13 ounces (nothing to measure with but I have an wilson pro overgrip on it).

The biggest improvement were the defensive shots, I was able use the squash shot, buggy whip and slice with very good placement and depth on the defensive.

Taking balls on the rise and right off the bounce were also a bit easier. Ball seemed to stay deep most of the time and not deflect or mishit.

My topspin didn't look like there were as many revs, but it looked like the ball was dipping more and kicking up higher. I don't know how to explain that, maybe I am just seeing things.

Travlerajm, do you think I should take some weight away from the bottom of the hoop as it feels like my serve is lacking. Spin and kick suits me the best so I was thinking a polarized setup would benefit my game.

travlerajm
09-23-2006, 12:31 AM
Wow I just added about an ounce of lead to my pog mid and my groundstrokes have never felt better. I think it slowed my fast swing down to a more comfortable and consistent speed. I'm having troubles getting racquet head speed on the serve though. My serve felt like I am almost arming the ball more. I just couldn't get that smack feel like i could before.

I added i think 16 inches of lead(.5") in the trapdoor buttcap, and lead all around the hoop about 34inches worth (basically one layer all the way around the inner hoop). I'm surprised how I am able to handle the weight as I'm not very strong (5'9: 145lbs).

I think the balance is around 12 3/8ths and i'm guessing i'm weighing in around 13 ounces (nothing to measure with but I have an wilson pro overgrip on it).

The biggest improvement were the defensive shots, I was able use the squash shot, buggy whip and slice with very good placement and depth on the defensive.

Taking balls on the rise and right off the bounce were also a bit easier. Ball seemed to stay deep most of the time and not deflect or mishit.

My topspin didn't look like there were as many revs, but it looked like the ball was dipping more and kicking up higher. I don't know how to explain that, maybe I am just seeing things.

Travlerajm, do you think I should take some weight away from the bottom of the hoop as it feels like my serve is lacking. Spin and kick suits me the best so I was thinking a polarized setup would benefit my game.

The heavier ball you are experiencing is due to increased ball flattening. It probably has lots of rpm, but because the dwell time is shorter, it gives you the illusion that it has lower rpm.

A more polarized setup would be worth a try. As a starting point, I would recommend trying two layers of tape 12-inches long stretching across the tip (starting at about 10 o'clock and ending at 2 o'clock), for a total of 12g across the tip. Start be keeping the handle counterweighted the same way you have it now. This will give you about the same swingweight, but it will drop your static weight by 5g which should help your serve kick higher, and it will add a little more spin to your groundies. Test it out, and then fine tune it by adjusting the amount of lead in the hoop by one gram increments. Your groundies may lose a little power, which can be easily remedied with a slight drop in tension.

borislee
02-03-2007, 02:13 AM
Great Article, I enjoy reading this.

Mind if I translating this into chinese and post elsewhere?

iksmols
02-03-2007, 10:40 AM
The ATP pro landscape is becoming more polarized. What I mean by this is that the ATP tour used to be the exclusive realm of players who played heavy racquets with low moment of inertia. Today, most pros still use the classic depolarized setup. But we are now witnessing the dawn of the ďpolarizer.Ē Polarizers use racquet setups with more polarized weight distributions - i.e., weight distributed more toward the ends.

The polarized setup is used by players like Federer, Nadal, and Davydenko. Polarized setups have very low hitting weight to swingweight ratio. Because of the relatively low hitting weight, lower tension is required to compensate for the power deficit. The advantage of this type of setup is increased spin. So polarized setups are required to hit the ultra-sharp angles that Federer is known for (According to Greg Ravenís site, Fedís racquet has a higher swingweight than a retail Tour 90, but itís static weight is the same. It is therefore more polarized than the retail version). And Nadalís polarized setup (15 grams under his bumper plus 5 grams in the butt) help him generate the tremendous spins that have helped him to dominate the clay court circuit.

While polarized setups are becoming more popular today (especially for slow-court specialists) because of the increased spin potential, the polarized setups have some major disadvantages. The biggest disadvantage of the polarized (low-tension) setup is that it is very difficult to control the trajectory of your shot when the incoming shot has heavy spin. Considering Federerís low-tension polarized setup, his inability to drive his flat backhand accurately when he plays Nadal should not be surprising. Also, a polarized setup has poor stability and control on volleys. Polarized setups make it more difficult to hit accurate powerful shots unless a heavy spin component is used to control the depth.

Due to these many drawbacks of polarized setups, most pros still opt for classic depolarized setups. It is no coincidence that the best returners in history have all been ďdepolarizers.Ē Hewitt, Agassi, Blake, and Courier are/were among the best at stepping in and ripping returns on the rise. As good as Federer and Nadal are, these two polarizers will never be able to drive service returns from inside the baseline like the best depolarizers.

In general, the best serve-and-volleyers have all been depolarizers. As depolarizers like Becker, Edberg, Sampras and Krajicek have shown, the lawns of Wimbledon are perfect for the accurate and penetrating balls that come off the stiff stringbeds of a depolarized racquet. Rafter is a notable exception Ė his polarized setup allowed him to hit slow, high-bouncing kick serves, giving him time to close tightly on the net. He then used his athleticism to stab passing attempts downward into the court. But Rafterís springy stringbed was less than ideal for hitting the precision first volleys from shoetop level that were a key to Samprasí and Beckerís Wimbledon dominance. And Rafterís loopy serve didnít bounce as high on grass, making it harder for him to dominate on grass the way he could on speedy high-bouncing hardcourts.

So now on to the main point of this threadÖ

The following step-by-step procedure will allow you to customize your racquet with a ďdepolarizedĒ low polar moment of inertia setup so that it plays similarly to the racquets used by the majority of current ATP pros. Pros using this type of setup include Sampras, Agassi, Blake, Roddick, Hewitt, Kiefer, Grosjean, and most greats from past eras.

Procedure for creating the classic ďdepolarizedĒ pro style racquet setup:

Step 1. Start with a thin-beam stock racquet. A flex rating of 65 or lower will work best. Stiffer platform frames will be excellent for serve-and-volley style, but the spin potential of stiff frames will be severely limited once they are properly leaded up. So I recommend starting with a flexible frame. The starting strung weight can be anywhere between 11 and 12.5 oz. Headsize is not critical.

Step 2. Choose your desired final racquet weight based on your desired style of play. For serve-and-volley style or for an offensive-minded penetrating groundstroke style, I recommend 13.0-13.5 oz. When optimized, a heavier racquet in this range will be best for directional accuracy, especially against hard-hit incoming balls, or against heavy incoming spin. If you would prefer to be a little more defensive-minded or consistency-oriented player, I recommend a static weight closer to 12.5 oz. For best results, I recommend that there is 0.5 to 1.5 oz. between your starting strung weight and your desired final weight.

An aside note: When choosing your playing style, I encourage you to be open-minded, ignore your current strengths and weaknesses, and select the setup of the player you most desire to play like. When I use a well-balanced, Federer-like polarized setup, I find myself going for inside-out sharply angled dipping forehands. When I set my racquet up like Coria, my strokes become loopy and spinny but I feel like itís impossible to miss. But when I set my racquet up like Blake, I canít resist going for flat penetrating forehands to the corners. And when I use the Sampras setup, my serve-and-volley confidence shoots skyward. In other words, my racquet setup influences my playing style more than my physical skills do. Unless you have an obvious physical limitation, your game may be more versatile than you think.

Step 3. Add lead at 3 and 9. I recommend adding about 5-10 grams total (about 5 grams for starting stock swingweight of 330, plus an additional gram for every 5 kg-cm^2 drop in stock swingweight below that) with two layers of strips on each side. It is better to use 2 layers of 4" strips than to spread one layer over an 8-inch length because the former will increase swingweight less. Also, significantly better torsional stability can be achieved by putting the lead on the outside of the frame rather than the inside, since the change in moment of inertia about the longitudinal axis is proportional to the square of the distance from added lead to the centerline. Use ľĒ-wide strips on each side of the string plane. Eight grams is a rough guideline. The total amount that you add here can be adjusted later when you troubleshoot your setup. But I definitely advise against adding more than 10-12 g at this location, since the swingweight will likely become unmanageable.

Step 4. Measure the new weight and balance of your racquet.

Step 5. Calculate the amount of additional weight to be added using this equation:

mí = M Ė m

mí = additional mass to be added, in ounces.
M = desired final static weight in ounces.
m = static weight measured in step 4, in ounces.

Step 6. Calculate final balance point using this equation:

R = 44.57 / sqrt(M)
R = distance to final balance point from butt end.
M = desired final static weight.

Step 7. Calculate location to add concentrated mass mí using this equation:

rí = (MR Ė mr)/mí
rí = location of center of mass for mí, in inches from butt end.
r = distance to balance point in inches measured in step 4.

Step 8. Add mass mí at location rí by wrapping lead tape around handle (under grip). Make sure that the center of mass for mí is within 0.1Ē of location rí. As other racquet technicians such as John Cauthen have correctly noted, the location of this mass is critical to having a high-performance setup. The value for rí determined by the above equation will optimize the plough-through effect of the racquet for a male player of normal strength. Moving the mass mí a quarter inch up will likely decrease power due to higher swingweight, while moving it a quarter inch down will likely decrease power due to lower hitting weight. For best results, the total width of the leaded zone centered around rí should not exceed 1 inch.

Step 9. Adjust tension. This depolarized leaded setup may be higher powered than your regular setup. If so, an increase in string tension will be required to optimize control. For final weights around 12.5 oz., you likely will be fine with the tension that works for you in the stock frame. But for setups over 13.0 oz., an increase of 5 lbs or so will probably be necessary.

Step 10. You are ready for a playtest.

Step 11. Troubleshooting your setup:

If your frame feels overpowered or underpowered, there are two preferred options. The first option is to adjust the string tension. Another option is to adjust the desired final static weight and repeat steps 2 through 8. If your racquet is overpowered, a lower static weight will reduce the power. And if it is underpowered, increasing static weight will help.

You can use the amount of weight at the 3 and 9 region to tune your swingweight. Increasing the weight at the 3 and 9 region will flatten your serve and groundstrokes, while decreasing the weight will add spin. I recommend making these adjustments in 1 gram increments. Also, you might get better results if you repeat steps 2 through 8 after you tweak the amount of lead at 3 and 9.

Lastly: remember that these are just general guidelines to get you started on your way to a sweet feeling setup that will best suit your game. Donít be afraid to keep tweaking things.

-----------------

.

It is very similar to what I did with my Redondo MP to achieve mass distribution of Wilson Ncode nsix-one 95 and retain sweet feel of Redondo racquet.(check my post in the Redondo Club thread with today`s date)

smittysan89
02-06-2007, 06:40 AM
when you say "Use ¼”-wide strips on each side of the string plane. Eight grams is a rough guideline. The total amount that you add here can be adjusted later when you troubleshoot your setup. But I definitely advise against adding more than 10-12 g at this location, since the swingweight will likely become unmanageable."

what location are you talking about? the string plane? where exactly would that be?

Also, so the main differences between a polarized setup (SW2?), and a depolarized setup, is that with a polarized or SW2 setup, the weight is more in the upper hoop around 12, while the depolarized setup is more at 3 and 9?

travlerajm
02-06-2007, 07:29 AM
when you say "Use ľĒ-wide strips on each side of the string plane. Eight grams is a rough guideline. The total amount that you add here can be adjusted later when you troubleshoot your setup. But I definitely advise against adding more than 10-12 g at this location, since the swingweight will likely become unmanageable."

what location are you talking about? the string plane? where exactly would that be?

I was referring to the 3 and 9 location. The string plane is the plane of the stringbed.


Also, so the main differences between a polarized setup (SW2?), and a depolarized setup, is that with a polarized or SW2 setup, the weight is more in the upper hoop around 12, while the depolarized setup is more at 3 and 9?

I'd say the primary difference that distinguishes a polarized setup from a depolarized setup is the location of any counterweight in the handle, but ideally, both would be at SW2 (more upper handle for depolarized, more butt for polarized). But leading more at 3 and 9, and less at 12 would also make the setup more depolarized.

haerdalis
02-06-2007, 07:31 AM
One major advantage with the polarized setup is the arm-friendlieness it gives the racquet. The other effects are not as "visible" to me.

smittysan89
02-06-2007, 07:33 AM
I was referring to the 3 and 9 location. The string plane is the plane of the stringbed.



I'd say the primary difference that distinguishes a polarized setup from a depolarized setup is the location of any counterweight in the handle, but ideally, both would be at SW2 (more upper handle for depolarized, more butt for polarized). But leading more at 3 and 9, and less at 12 would also make the setup more depolarized.

hmmm....im trying to figure out which setup I would want to use. I would think I would want more of a depolarized setup via roddick, safin, blake etc.

So instead of having 4 grams at 3 and 9 and 10 grams at 12 for my SW2 setup, I should have the 10 grams at 3 and 9, and then the 4 grams at 12? I also had around 10 grams at the buttcap on that setup.

travlerajm
02-06-2007, 07:40 AM
hmmm....im trying to figure out which setup I would want to use. I would think I would want more of a depolarized setup via roddick, safin, blake etc.

So instead of having 4 grams at 3 and 9 and 10 grams at 12 for my SW2 setup, I should have the 10 grams at 3 and 9, and then the 4 grams at 12? I also had around 10 grams at the buttcap on that setup.

Blake and Safin are using almost opposite setups. Safin is quite polarized, while Blake is very depolarized. Both are at SW2. Keep in mind that you will need to string at higher tension to keep the ball from going long if you choose a depolarized setup.

smittysan89
02-06-2007, 07:43 AM
Blake and Safin are using almost opposite setups. Safin is quite polarized, while Blake is very depolarized. Both are at SW2. Keep in mind that you will need to string at higher tension to keep the ball from going long if you choose a depolarized setup.

ahhh.....hmm this whole thing is so interesting....

I guess ill just try out my SW2 setup and see how i like it.

On my Pure Control I have:

10g at buttcap
4g at 3 & 9
10g at 12

weighs in around 12.8 oz
SW of 371

Is this ideal? I dont want be adding much power to the Pure Control...any suggestions?

jetlee2k
02-06-2007, 08:26 AM
How do I setup polarize racquet for Asian K90 tour?? My style is very similar to federer style. I'd like to try out his setup. I've added 3g at 3 & 9 already. what's next?? should I lower my tension down to 50main 48 cross?? THANKS

Jet Li

smittysan89
02-06-2007, 12:45 PM
How do I setup polarize racquet for Asian K90 tour?? My style is very similar to federer style. I'd like to try out his setup. I've added 3g at 3 & 9 already. what's next?? should I lower my tension down to 50main 48 cross?? THANKS

Jet Li

download the spreadsheet, tinker, and read the whole thread....only then will you find enlightenment

westy
02-06-2007, 12:55 PM
travlerajm, just i just added lead to my pro's pro triton x1 to make it depolarized and at sw2, i originally had 15 grams at 3 and 9 and 5 at butt, but added 10 at 5.6 inches from butt to try out depolarization again. if i dont like it, will just remove cos this is the last leg of finding my perfect weight setup!!! will let you know

psycho0
11-18-2009, 06:37 PM
Anyone ever try adding weight at 12 o'clock to polarize a Microgel prestige pro?

LafayetteHitter
11-18-2009, 06:46 PM
Wow talk about back from the dead.

levy1
11-19-2009, 02:51 AM
Great to hear from you. As a newbie about a month ago, seeing snips of posts from you and John I tried to find information about both of you. I searched posts everywhere to find out how to work with my racquet's. I found a few posts and some of the tips I tried from you really helped my racket work better. I really appreciate your hard work and sharing your ideas with this forum. We know when anyone with new perceived radical information posts you are going to get flack. As a ski tuner, boot fitter and ski/boot alignment specialist I have gotten it all my life but all of the pros use some of this technology which will impove most recreational skiers. If I post on a Ski site lookout for the fallout!

I say start a service, I will send you my racquet's, pay you and report on this forum. I see millions in your future. OK, maybe hundreds but we all can use a buck!

Please email me for your address!

freshhh
11-06-2010, 12:27 PM
Polarized setup : Federer, Nadal, and Davydenko (very low hitting weight to swingweight ratio).

Depolarized setup : Becker, Edberg, Sampras and Krajicek

Are you sure about Boris Becker racquet setup falling in the polarized category? Look at those specs :

Boris Becker 11 Special Edition specs :

Head Size:98 sq. in. / 632 sq. cm.
Length: 27 inches / 69 cm
Strung Weight: 12.6oz / 357g
Balance: 4pts Head Light
Swingweight: 377
Stiffness: 58

higher swingweight like Soderling / Nadal :

Soderling's Mass : 357 Balance 33.75 Swing : 384 Length : 27
Nadal's 332 33.50 65 355 26-7/8

freshhh
11-06-2010, 12:56 PM
found Yvan Lendl's specs (depolarized) :

Adidas Lendl GTX Pro-T (Bosworth) :

Head size: 80in
Length: 27 in
Strung Weight: 13.7oz / 388g
Balance: 6pts HL
Swingweight: 365
Stiffness: 56
Beam Width: 19.5mm
Composition: Graphite
Grip Type: Suede
String Pattern: 18mains / 18 crosses
Tension: 50 - 60lbs

1Sampras
03-13-2012, 02:07 AM
I would like to set my pure storm tour gt similar to Sampras as far as lead tape amount and locations at 3 and 9 which I could see from photos but have no idea where to put it on the handle to counter balance. Any advice?



The polarized setup is used by players like Federer, Nadal, and Davydenko. Polarized setups have very low hitting weight to swingweight ratio. Because of the relatively low hitting weight, lower tension is required to compensate for the power deficit. The advantage of this type of setup is increased spin. So polarized setups are required to hit the ultra-sharp angles that Federer is known for (According to Greg Ravenís site, Fedís racquet has a higher swingweight than a retail Tour 90, but itís static weight is the same. It is therefore more polarized than the retail version). And Nadalís polarized setup (15 grams under his bumper plus 5 grams in the butt) help him generate the tremendous spins that have helped him to dominate the clay court circuit.

While polarized setups are becoming more popular today (especially for slow-court specialists) because of the increased spin potential, the polarized setups have some major disadvantages. The biggest disadvantage of the polarized (low-tension) setup is that it is very difficult to control the trajectory of your shot when the incoming shot has heavy spin. Considering Federerís low-tension polarized setup, his inability to drive his flat backhand accurately when he plays Nadal should not be surprising. Also, a polarized setup has poor stability and control on volleys. Polarized setups make it more difficult to hit accurate powerful shots unless a heavy spin component is used to control the depth.

Due to these many drawbacks of polarized setups, most pros still opt for classic depolarized setups. It is no coincidence that the best returners in history have all been ďdepolarizers.Ē Hewitt, Agassi, Blake, and Courier are/were among the best at stepping in and ripping returns on the rise. As good as Federer and Nadal are, these two polarizers will never be able to drive service returns from inside the baseline like the best depolarizers.

In general, the best serve-and-volleyers have all been depolarizers. As depolarizers like Becker, Edberg, Sampras and Krajicek have shown, the lawns of Wimbledon are perfect for the accurate and penetrating balls that come off the stiff stringbeds of a depolarized racquet. Rafter is a notable exception Ė his polarized setup allowed him to hit slow, high-bouncing kick serves, giving him time to close tightly on the net. He then used his athleticism to stab passing attempts downward into the court. But Rafterís springy stringbed was less than ideal for hitting the precision first volleys from shoetop level that were a key to Samprasí and Beckerís Wimbledon dominance. And Rafterís loopy serve didnít bounce as high on grass, making it harder for him to dominate on grass the way he could on speedy high-bouncing hardcourts.

So now on to the main point of this threadÖ

The following step-by-step procedure will allow you to customize your racquet with a ďdepolarizedĒ low polar moment of inertia setup so that it plays similarly to the racquets used by the majority of current ATP pros. Pros using this type of setup include Sampras, Agassi, Blake, Roddick, Hewitt, Kiefer, Grosjean, and most greats from past eras.

Procedure for creating the classic ďdepolarizedĒ pro style racquet setup:

Step 1. Start with a thin-beam stock racquet. A flex rating of 65 or lower will work best. Stiffer platform frames will be excellent for serve-and-volley style, but the spin potential of stiff frames will be severely limited once they are properly leaded up. So I recommend starting with a flexible frame. The starting strung weight can be anywhere between 11 and 12.5 oz. Headsize is not critical.

Step 2. Choose your desired final racquet weight based on your desired style of play. For serve-and-volley style or for an offensive-minded penetrating groundstroke style, I recommend 13.0-13.5 oz. When optimized, a heavier racquet in this range will be best for directional accuracy, especially against hard-hit incoming balls, or against heavy incoming spin. If you would prefer to be a little more defensive-minded or consistency-oriented player, I recommend a static weight closer to 12.5 oz. For best results, I recommend that there is 0.5 to 1.5 oz. between your starting strung weight and your desired final weight.

An aside note: When choosing your playing style, I encourage you to be open-minded, ignore your current strengths and weaknesses, and select the setup of the player you most desire to play like. When I use a well-balanced, Federer-like polarized setup, I find myself going for inside-out sharply angled dipping forehands. When I set my racquet up like Coria, my strokes become loopy and spinny but I feel like itís impossible to miss. But when I set my racquet up like Blake, I canít resist going for flat penetrating forehands to the corners. And when I use the Sampras setup, my serve-and-volley confidence shoots skyward. In other words, my racquet setup influences my playing style more than my physical skills do. Unless you have an obvious physical limitation, your game may be more versatile than you think.

Step 3. Add lead at 3 and 9. I recommend adding about 5-10 grams total (about 5 grams for starting stock swingweight of 330, plus an additional gram for every 5 kg-cm^2 drop in stock swingweight below that) with two layers of strips on each side. It is better to use 2 layers of 4" strips than to spread one layer over an 8-inch length because the former will increase swingweight less. Also, significantly better torsional stability can be achieved by putting the lead on the outside of the frame rather than the inside, since the change in moment of inertia about the longitudinal axis is proportional to the square of the distance from added lead to the centerline. Use ľĒ-wide strips on each side of the string plane. Eight grams is a rough guideline. The total amount that you add here can be adjusted later when you troubleshoot your setup. But I definitely advise against adding more than 10-12 g at this location, since the swingweight will likely become unmanageable.

Step 4. Measure the new weight and balance of your racquet.

Step 5. Calculate the amount of additional weight to be added using this equation:

mí = M Ė m

mí = additional mass to be added, in ounces.
M = desired final static weight in ounces.
m = static weight measured in step 4, in ounces.

Step 6. Calculate final balance point using this equation:

R = 44.57 / sqrt(M)
R = distance to final balance point from butt end.
M = desired final static weight.

Step 7. Calculate location to add concentrated mass mí using this equation:

rí = (MR Ė mr)/mí
rí = location of center of mass for mí, in inches from butt end.
r = distance to balance point in inches measured in step 4.

Step 8. Add mass mí at location rí by wrapping lead tape around handle (under grip). Make sure that the center of mass for mí is within 0.1Ē of location rí. As other racquet technicians such as John Cauthen have correctly noted, the location of this mass is critical to having a high-performance setup. The value for rí determined by the above equation will optimize the plough-through effect of the racquet for a male player of normal strength. Moving the mass mí a quarter inch up will likely decrease power due to higher swingweight, while moving it a quarter inch down will likely decrease power due to lower hitting weight. For best results, the total width of the leaded zone centered around rí should not exceed 1 inch.

Step 9. Adjust tension. This depolarized leaded setup may be higher powered than your regular setup. If so, an increase in string tension will be required to optimize control. For final weights around 12.5 oz., you likely will be fine with the tension that works for you in the stock frame. But for setups over 13.0 oz., an increase of 5 lbs or so will probably be necessary.

Step 10. You are ready for a playtest.

Step 11. Troubleshooting your setup:

If your frame feels overpowered or underpowered, there are two preferred options. The first option is to adjust the string tension. Another option is to adjust the desired final static weight and repeat steps 2 through 8. If your racquet is overpowered, a lower static weight will reduce the power. And if it is underpowered, increasing static weight will help.

You can use the amount of weight at the 3 and 9 region to tune your swingweight. Increasing the weight at the 3 and 9 region will flatten your serve and groundstrokes, while decreasing the weight will add spin. I recommend making these adjustments in 1 gram increments. Also, you might get better results if you repeat steps 2 through 8 after you tweak the amount of lead at 3 and 9.

Lastly: remember that these are just general guidelines to get you started on your way to a sweet feeling setup that will best suit your game. Donít be afraid to keep tweaking things.

-----------------

In the future, I plan to contribute some guidelines to customizing your racquet with well-balanced polarized setups also. I have so far designed a number of well-balanced polarized setups with specific frames. But polarized setups are more sensitive to the weight and balance of the starting platform frame, so it is more complicated to devise a general template like the one above.

Also, please understand that I will not be hanging around to read TT posts anymore, so donít take it personal if I donít respond to a question.[/QUOTE]