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View Full Version : Does anyone think the Prince 03 Silver could be modified into a players racquet?


AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-24-2006, 08:54 PM
I have this terrible old racquet that I have to use right now while I'm looking for my old Dunlop at a price I can afford, but a girl I know has the Prince O3 Silver you know that astronomically priced O-port widebody that won some bs award from a magazine..anyway she said she would let me use it (or even sell it very cheap) because it's too-powerful for her, so I hit with it the other day...great for my one-hand back hand and not bad on serve, but the only way I can get a forehand to stay in is if i hit a drop shot.


I was thinking, "Maybe" the main problem is that it's so head heavy, does anyone think that I could use lead tape to effectively balance this racquet, or maybe even make it a couple points HEAD LIGHT??...

...and does anyone have an opinion on whether this would make it somewhat easier to control it's power??

it only weighs 8.8 ounces I beleive, so I could heavily modify it with lead tape, as I can use a racquet of 13 ounces no problem.


but would balancing it so it was more head light control the power significantly??


How much lead tape do I put on the handle, and where, do I just rap it around the base, or up near the top of the handle??? IT seems like if i put lead tape at the base it would make it hard to hold?? excuse my ignorance..



Thanks for reading! any thoughts are appreciated...

Duzza
09-25-2006, 04:00 AM
Yeah it's possible, but why bother? It won't play that great...

travlerajm
09-25-2006, 04:50 AM
Yes, it can be done. And it can play great. But to get maximum performance out of it, you'll need to go with a Moya type setup (high swingweight but low static weight) to get enough spin. If you try to balance it like a typical headlight player's racquet, it's stiffness will make it a very accurate targeting frame, but you won't get very much spin.

Here's what I recommend to make this into a high-performance hard-serving, heavy ball-hitting player's frame:

12g across the tip (from 10:30 to 1:30, in 2 layers of 12"-long strips).
Plus ~30g in the butt to counterweight.

String: 16-gauge Kevlar hybrid, tension in low 70s.

Final specs: ~11.1oz, ~365sw, 13.6" balance.

Fine-Tuning:
You may need to adjust tension to find the proper power level. If is overpowered, you can try tuning it by adding a few more grams to the butt (in 5 to 10-g increments). And if it's underpowered, you can try adding an additional gram to the tip.

bluegrasser
09-25-2006, 05:19 AM
There's a guy here that's a ranked ( over 30 ) doubles player that uses the 03 Silver - I'd say string it tighter for more control, give it a shot what the heck - but then again you'll here it from the players stick crowd :) they might even call you grandpa.

ollinger
09-25-2006, 07:49 AM
It's reverse alchemy -- adding lead to your Silver.

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-25-2006, 10:51 AM
Yes, it can be done. And it can play great. But to get maximum performance out of it, you'll need to go with a Moya type setup (high swingweight but low static weight) to get enough spin. If you try to balance it like a typical headlight player's racquet, it's stiffness will make it a very accurate targeting frame, but you won't get very much spin.

Here's what I recommend to make this into a high-performance hard-serving, heavy ball-hitting player's frame:

12g across the tip (from 10:30 to 1:30, in 2 layers of 12"-long strips).
Plus ~30g in the butt to counterweight.

String: 16-gauge Kevlar hybrid, tension in low 70s.

Final specs: ~11.1oz, ~365sw, 13.6" balance.

Fine-Tuning:
You may need to adjust tension to find the proper power level. If is overpowered, you can try tuning it by adding a few more grams to the butt. And if it's underpowered, you can try adding an additional gram to the tip.


Hey thanks, I'm going to try this out. This guy really knows his tennis science.


Just one question: how/where do you add the lead tape around the butt of the racquet? Right around the butt of the handle?? But that's where I hold it?

excuse my ignorance I've only used lead at the 3 and 9 positions on a headlight frame, never around the butt of the racquet.


thanks for all the responses, it will be an interesting experiment, I'll post about it in a week or so.

travlerajm
09-25-2006, 11:50 AM
Hey thanks, I'm going to try this out. This guy really knows his tennis science.


Just one question: how/where do you add the lead tape around the butt of the racquet? Right around the butt of the handle?? But that's where I hold it?

excuse my ignorance I've only used lead at the 3 and 9 positions on a headlight frame, never around the butt of the racquet.


thanks for all the responses, it will be an interesting experiment, I'll post about it in a week or so.

I usually remove the grip and wrap around the lowest 1-inch (the conical part). If you break it into lengths that are about 2.25" long, then use can use those with one on each side for each layer, so that you can keep the lead at the same angle as the bevel. If you try to wrap in on long piece, it will be harder to wrap nice and tight (because it is a cone shape).

So for 30g, I would do it in 6 layers of 1-inch wide (4.5" per layer), plus 1 layer of 0.5-inch wide along the bottom 0.5". (This would total 29.25g).

By wrapping along the cone part of the grip, it doesn't actually increase the grip size, instead it just moves your hand postion about 1/16-inch further up the handle. But the grip will still feel almost the same.

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-25-2006, 12:15 PM
Ok the conical part, heh, I like that word "conical"...thanks!

Although one consideration I just thought of, is that on my Forehand only, I hit relatively flat, I hit the forehand with a little brush up the back topspin but I drive throught the ball moreso and usually I never hit it with heavy, looping topspin...my one-hand backhand has a fair amount of topspin but not extremely heavy, my serve I have to vary the spin and speed because I'm not that tall so I have to mix it up and keep my opponent guessing rather then booming down on him.


I will definetly try the set-up you have layed out very nicely for me, thank you!


Just let me know when you get the chance if you think this set-up would be too spin friendly for my game, as I don't need an extremely spin friendly racquet and am more concerned with being able to control and place my forehand with more precision (although I don't want it too headlight), The O3's are naturally very spin friendly so perhaps this is another reason I should just go with another racquet then the 03 silver...but I'm going to try this experiment as I am very curious as to the outcome. thanks!

FitzRoy
09-25-2006, 12:21 PM
I usually remove the grip and wrap around the lowest 1-inch (the conical part). If you break it into lengths that are about 2.25" long, then use can use those with one on each side for each layer, so that you can keep the lead at the same angle as the bevel. If you try to wrap in on long piece, it will be harder to wrap nice and tight (because it is a cone shape).

So for 30g, I would do it in 6 layers of 1-inch wide (4.5" per layer), plus 1 layer of 0.5-inch wide along the bottom 0.5". (This would total 29.25g).

By wrapping along the cone part of the grip, it doesn't actually increase the grip size, instead it just moves your hand postion about 1/16-inch further up the handle. But the grip will still feel almost the same.

Hey travlerajm, maybe you could help me out with something here? I've never owned a Prince racquet (though I did like the POGs an old coach used to use), so I've never actually done any customizing with one, and don't know if they may be different. But the Wilsons and Heads which I've been adding lead to all have a buttcap which extends over this conical part of the grip, with 2-3 staples protruding from it. I've always just ignored this bottom part and wrapped lead essentially starting at just above the 1" area. Do Prince racquets have a similar mechanism, and if so, do you just wrap it over the staples? I feel kind of silly at this point, since I've been adding weight to handles for a couple of years and never even thought about wrapping over the conical part. Obviously this region would have a stronger impact on balance so I should probably start using it instead.

travlerajm
09-26-2006, 12:31 PM
Hey travlerajm, maybe you could help me out with something here? I've never owned a Prince racquet (though I did like the POGs an old coach used to use), so I've never actually done any customizing with one, and don't know if they may be different. But the Wilsons and Heads which I've been adding lead to all have a buttcap which extends over this conical part of the grip, with 2-3 staples protruding from it. I've always just ignored this bottom part and wrapped lead essentially starting at just above the 1" area. Do Prince racquets have a similar mechanism, and if so, do you just wrap it over the staples? I feel kind of silly at this point, since I've been adding weight to handles for a couple of years and never even thought about wrapping over the conical part. Obviously this region would have a stronger impact on balance so I should probably start using it instead.

I've found that newer Prince racquet buttcaps extend the same length as other brands, but it is designed so there is almost no "step". Wilsons, in contrast, have an annoying 1/16-inch step (the buttcap wall thickness). A nice thing about adding around the tapered part is that, as I said, it can be done in a way that does not change the grip size (it just slides your hand position further up the handle a tiny imperceptable amount).

Another important difference between adding to the butt and adding further up the handle is how it affects the power level and spin level. The impact axis of rotation for a forehand is about 4cm (1.25") from the butt - almost at the end of the tapered portion. If you add mass below this point, it decreases power and adds spin. If you add mass above that point, it adds power and decreases spin. So you can see that counterweight location is an important consideration if you are trying to tweak your racquet to play just how you want.

BounceHitBounceHit
09-26-2006, 01:01 PM
I have this terrible old racquet that I have to use right now while I'm looking for my old Dunlop at a price I can afford, but a girl I know has the Prince O3 Silver you know that astronomically priced O-port widebody that won some bs award from a magazine..anyway she said she would let me use it (or even sell it very cheap) because it's too-powerful for her, so I hit with it the other day...great for my one-hand back hand and not bad on serve, but the only way I can get a forehand to stay in is if i hit a drop shot.


I was thinking, "Maybe" the main problem is that it's so head heavy, does anyone think that I could use lead tape to effectively balance this racquet, or maybe even make it a couple points HEAD LIGHT??...

...and does anyone have an opinion on whether this would make it somewhat easier to control it's power??

it only weighs 8.8 ounces I beleive, so I could heavily modify it with lead tape, as I can use a racquet of 13 ounces no problem.


but would balancing it so it was more head light control the power significantly??


How much lead tape do I put on the handle, and where, do I just rap it around the base, or up near the top of the handle??? IT seems like if i put lead tape at the base it would make it hard to hold?? excuse my ignorance..

Give it a try!! I served a half dozen balls with one of those things a few months back and I was absolutely CLOBBERING them w/ VERY GOOD pace AND spin.

If you serve and volley, just trot on in and you've got a screen door sized weapon once at net!! :cool:

CC



Thanks for reading! any thoughts are appreciated...

travlerajm
09-28-2006, 03:25 PM
Another setup that might be fun to try with the O3 Silver, especially if you are a player who likes to hit a flat Sampras style forehand:

18g at 3+9, plus about 64g wrapped around the top of the handle centered at 8" from the butt. (82g total added). Then string with a Kevlar hybrid or a poly at about 80 lbs.

Specs:

Weight: 12.5 oz.
Balance: 13.6 oz.
SW: 365.

With most frames, it's impossible to modify them to get these specs. But the O3 Silver starts out light enough to do it.

This setup would be interesting to test because theoretically the 13.6" balance at 12.5 oz. should give an incredibly large Serve/Groundstroke Power Ratio (SGRP), so it should be a beast of a serving racquet, even if you string at 80 lbs to reign in the groundstroke power level. Also, it's huge hitting weight coupled with a stiff frame means that in theory it should flatten the ball an amazing amount, perhaps enough to counter the effect of the stiff frame and tight stringbed. In other words, the ball will spin at very high rpm even though the dwell time will be short. But cover your eardrums if you are on the next court, as the sound will be loud!

Also, it should be a superb volley racquet due to it's huge hitting weight and high twistweight (despite the low recoil weight).

Noveson
09-28-2006, 03:44 PM
All bow down to travlerajm...(bows reverently). Just out of curiosity what do you do for a living?

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-28-2006, 09:29 PM
Another setup that might be fun to try with the O3 Silver, especially if you are a player who likes to hit a flat Sampras style forehand:

18g at 3+9, plus about 64g wrapped around the top of the handle centered at 8" from the butt. (82g total added). Then string with a Kevlar hybrid or a poly at about 80 lbs.

Specs:

Weight: 12.5 oz.
Balance: 13.6 oz.
SW: 365.

With most frames, it's impossible to modify them to get these specs. But the O3 Silver starts out light enough to do it.

This setup would be interesting to test because theoretically the 13.6" balance at 12.5 oz. should give an incredibly large Serve/Groundstroke Power Ratio (SGRP), so it should be a beast of a serving racquet, even if you string at 80 lbs to reign in the groundstroke power level. Also, it's huge hitting weight coupled with a stiff frame means that in theory it should flatten the ball an amazing amount, perhaps enough to counter the effect of the stiff frame and tight stringbed. In other words, the ball will spin at very high rpm even though the dwell time will be short. But cover your eardrums if you are on the next court, as the sound will be loud!

Also, it should be a superb volley racquet due to it's huge hitting weight and high twistweight (despite the low recoil weight).




WOW!!!


Just bought some lead-tape today, now I don't know which set-up to try, I do enjoy hitting my forehands relatively flat....but the other setup sounds great for my serve and backhand....I think I need more lead-tape for this second setup....

YEAH, it's so light i can really modify it into a totally different racquet!!


thanks!


Just a couple questions..

For the 2nd set-up, why no lead-tape on the conical end of the handle?
Is that because it adds spin abililty to the racquet weight?

how headlight would each version be, is that determined by the balance?

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-28-2006, 10:42 PM
There's only one problem for me, that is I don't want to have to (but maybe I will) get it re-strung right now unless I actually decide to buy it...

I have all the lead-tape I was hoping to try it in the next couple days...Mainly I'm looking to control the forehand by removing power from the racquet so I don't have to slow my swing way down (throws off my timing), I don't think I could underpower this racquet it is like a trampoline effect when I Hit a forehand...and I can control my forehand with other wide bodied racquets but not this one.

Right now, it's strung on the high end of the recommended tension at 67 pounds...

Is their possibly any modification I can try in the meantime before I get it restrung?

My first concern would be to remove power and make it somewhat heavier, I have an average swing not too loopy (moderate to fast) but I have to slow it waaay down and it throws off my timing, spin is not a major concern for now.


Should I just wrap a whole bunch of tape at the conical part AND at 8 inches above the handle, with a little bit at the top somewhere (either 3 and 9 or 10:30-1)?


Or is there NO MODIFICATION that will control this racquets power unless I get it strung atleast in the 70's or even 80's?


Thanks again this is intriguing.

travlerajm
09-28-2006, 11:10 PM
There's only one problem for me, that is I don't want to have to (but maybe I will) get it re-strung right now unless I actually decide to buy it...

I have all the lead-tape I was hoping to try it in the next couple days...Mainly I'm looking to control the forehand by removing power from the racquet so I don't have to slow my swing way down (throws off my timing), I don't think I could underpower this racquet it is like a trampoline effect when I Hit a forehand...and I can control my forehand with other wide bodied racquets but not this one.

Right now, it's strung on the high end of the recommended tension at 67 pounds...

Is their possibly any modification I can try in the meantime before I get it restrung?

My first concern would be to remove power and make it somewhat heavier, I have an average swing not too loopy (moderate to fast) but I have to slow it waaay down and it throws off my timing, spin is not a major concern for now.


Should I just wrap a whole bunch of tape at the conical part AND at 8 inches above the handle, with a little bit at the top somewhere (either 3 and 9 or 10:30-1)?


Or is there NO MODIFICATION that will control this racquets power unless I get it strung atleast in the 70's or even 80's?


Thanks again this is intriguing.

I've been thinking about this more. It's possible that the latter setup that I recommended might not be as powerful after all, because the higher effective swingweight will slow down you swing.

To reduce power, you can always just add lots of lead to the butt, and forget about adding weight to the hoop. However, the big disadvantage to doing that is that it will take away all the power from the serve as well. So I don't recommend that as a long-term solution.

Instead, if you are going to leave the 67-lb stringjob on, I recommend trying this:

Put 18g along the sides at 3 and 9 (2 layers 9" long). Then add about 30g to the butt (at 0.5").. Test it out and see how it feels. If it's still overpowered, you can add a few more grams to the hoop at 3+9 (eventually you reach a point where adding more lead to the hoop reduces power and adds spin. The idea is to make sure that you are beyond that max-power point.)

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-28-2006, 11:41 PM
THANKS!

I forgot to mention that this racquet, is unbelievable for volleys, I have never hit crisper, more precisely placed volleys in my life...unbelievable for volleying, and I serve and volley about 33% of the time...But even when volleying you can sense it's power and I hit a couple low volleys wide trying to angle them because I couldn't control the pace of the shot I was volleying.


juse one more question: by "(at 0.5)" you mean break the lead tape into half-inch segments??

30 G worth? won't I get cancer? haha, oh well, tennis is exciting the thrill of living on the edge while applying dangerous lead tape (known to the state of california to cause cancer)



thank you travlerajm, I can't wait to start with your suggestions and experiment cos this is such a great serve and volleying racquet, but my best shot used to be my forehand until I started using this racquet.

travlerajm
09-28-2006, 11:49 PM
THANKS!

I forgot to mention that this racquet, is unbelievable for volleys, I have never hit crisper, more precisely placed volleys in my life...unbelievable for volleying, and I serve and volley about 33% of the time...But even when volleying you can sense it's power and I hit a couple low volleys wide trying to angle them because I couldn't control the pace of the shot I was volleying.


juse one more question: by "(at 0.5)" you mean break the lead tape into half-inch segments??

30 G worth? won't I get cancer? haha, oh well, tennis is exciting the thrill of living on the edge while applying dangerous lead tape (known to the state of california to cause cancer)



thank you travlerajm, I can't wait to start with your suggestions and experiment cos this is such a great serve and volleying racquet, but my best shot used to be my forehand until I started using this racquet.

By 0.5", I mean that the center of mass of the added lead should be about 0.5" from the butt.

After adding the lead to the hoop, you will no longer need to swing on your volleys - you can use your racquet like a wall.

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-29-2006, 12:03 AM
haha, thanks I'll drop bye this thread after a couple days of modified hitting.

Duzza
09-29-2006, 04:02 AM
Another setup that might be fun to try with the O3 Silver, especially if you are a player who likes to hit a flat Sampras style forehand:

18g at 3+9, plus about 64g wrapped around the top of the handle centered at 8" from the butt. (82g total added). Then string with a Kevlar hybrid or a poly at about 80 lbs.

Specs:

Weight: 12.5 oz.
Balance: 13.6 oz.
SW: 365.

With most frames, it's impossible to modify them to get these specs. But the O3 Silver starts out light enough to do it.

This setup would be interesting to test because theoretically the 13.6" balance at 12.5 oz. should give an incredibly large Serve/Groundstroke Power Ratio (SGRP), so it should be a beast of a serving racquet, even if you string at 80 lbs to reign in the groundstroke power level. Also, it's huge hitting weight coupled with a stiff frame means that in theory it should flatten the ball an amazing amount, perhaps enough to counter the effect of the stiff frame and tight stringbed. In other words, the ball will spin at very high rpm even though the dwell time will be short. But cover your eardrums if you are on the next court, as the sound will be loud!

Also, it should be a superb volley racquet due to it's huge hitting weight and high twistweight (despite the low recoil weight).
Dude how do you do this?

haerdalis
09-29-2006, 04:41 AM
I have been thinking along these lines too. Trying to make a players racquet out of those head-heavy lightweight frames. I was thinking about trying it on a hammer racquet. I'd be very interested in hearing how it turns out with the silver.

FitzRoy
09-29-2006, 10:34 AM
If it's still overpowered, you can add a few more grams to the hoop at 3+9 (eventually you reach a point where adding more lead to the hoop reduces power and adds spin. The idea is to make sure that you are beyond that max-power point.)

travlerajm - I've been trying to experiment with this max-power point, since I've seen you make mention of it before. Do you know of any good numeric measure for it? IE, is it mostly related to hitting weight, frame stiffness, etc? I'm attempting to go well beyond the max-power point on my LM Radical and add lots of spin, but I'm having trouble figuring out exactly what type of distribution would be best for this. The next thing I'm going to try is wrapping 18 grams around the top of the handle at 8 inches to raise the hitting weight significantly. Does adding weight to the butt of the racquet (below the 4cm line) make it harder to reach the max-power point, or is it related only to the amount of weight in the head? Do you have any advice or general info on this?

travlerajm
09-29-2006, 05:43 PM
travlerajm - I've been trying to experiment with this max-power point, since I've seen you make mention of it before. Do you know of any good numeric measure for it? IE, is it mostly related to hitting weight, frame stiffness, etc? I'm attempting to go well beyond the max-power point on my LM Radical and add lots of spin, but I'm having trouble figuring out exactly what type of distribution would be best for this. The next thing I'm going to try is wrapping 18 grams around the top of the handle at 8 inches to raise the hitting weight significantly. Does adding weight to the butt of the racquet (below the 4cm line) make it harder to reach the max-power point, or is it related only to the amount of weight in the head? Do you have any advice or general info on this?

This is a good question.

Ball flattening tends to become noticeable with hitting weights over 10.0, but I should clarify that it is not the primary reason for the existence of the max-power point. And it is not the primary reason that a heavy Nadal or Safin type spin can only be hit with a heavier racquet.

The max-power point exists mainly because adding weight slows down your natural swing speed. A groundstroke is like the sweep of a pendulum - the heavier the mass on the end of the pendulum, the slower it swings. So the max-power point is the point where the added power due to further increase in hitting weight exactly equals the loss of power due to the the associated increase in swingweight. At the max-power point, your racquet will hit an extremely flat ball, in part because you need to string your racquet at super high tension to keep your groundstrokes in the court.

Spin is mostly a function of string tension. The lower your string tension, the more spin you can generate. But at low tension, you need to somehow make sure that your frame is low-powered, or else your racquet will be a rocket launcher.

There are two general ways to reduce power by adjusting the weight distribution. The first way is to use a very low hitting weight. This is how stock racquets are designed. But by using a low hitting weight, lots of spin potential is lost due to twisting of the frame.

The other way to reduce power level is to use a swingweight that is well beyond the max-power point. This is the way that pros like Nadal and Safin (and the majority of other current pros) use to set up their racquets for lots of spin. These racquets are similar in power to stock racquets, but by having much more weight in the hoop, there is almost no spin lost to twisting of the racquet. They are well beyond the max-power point, but they are very close to the max-spin point. Adding more mass beyond the max-spin point will result in loss of both power and spin.

To answer your question about how to find the max-power point, I haven't tried to measure it. My advice is to start out with your flexible lightweight stock player's racquet strung at the tension that you would normally string it at in stock form. Then gradually add weight in 2g increments at 3+9. Even if you are just hitting against a wall, it will be very easy to find your max power point, because it will be the point where your shots get the flattest. Keep going beyond that until the power level and spin return to a point where you have nice control again - now your racquet is set up like a pro.

Adding weight to the butt will increase effective swingweight (makes the pendulum heavier), bringing you to the max-power point faster.

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-29-2006, 07:41 PM
Ooooooooooo K

[the monkeys]I'M A BELIEVER[/the monkeys]


Modifications have an immense effect!!!


Check this out, I have no idea what I've done but it's very interesting, I'm excited so bear with me and inform me if I forgot to mention any crucial details:


When I got the lead tape the store only had 2 left, I went back today but no more yet so I decided to start off with the 36 grams (approx) of lead tape, and add more later.


First, I cut up 36" of lead tape (about 18grams) half in 3" segments and the other half in 1.5" segments and wrapped it around the butt of the handle (conical part) centered 0.5" from the butt like you said, plus I put another 2 grams stuck to the bottom of the handle where the 'P' is (flat part)

So total I have 19 Grams on the Butt of the handle.

Then I cut the remainder into four 8 1/2" (about) inch segments and put the tape on the inside of the frame aligned roughly with the O-PORTS, so it was centered around 3 and 9 with one layer on each side of the strings if you know what I mean (the frame is wide enough to put one 8 1/2" layer on EACH SIDE OF THE STRINGS on the inside of the frame, on both sides of the racquet (wow I'm confusing myself)

So now I have 17 grams on the head of the racquet in 4 single-layers (2 on each side) that are 9" long on each side of the strings, centered roughly at 3 and 9...

(I was thinking, technically is the tape really at 3 and 9? Since it's 9" long, it actually travels from like 10-8 and 2-4 wit 9 and 3 as the center, is that how you meant for me to apply it???)

NOW, onto the effects!!!


Unfortunately, I couldn't find anyone to hit with so I hit against a good backboard and practiced my serve, for 2 hrs.


FOREHAND: WHOOOOOAA!! I can finally take a full swing without the ball sailing!

It is so easy to apply spin it's ridiculous, and when I shift my hand even further to the far western grip I can swing, literally, as hard as I can, and hit forehands with amazing power and spin, and I SEEM to be able to control the direction of them 100 times better!!! although i was hitting against the backboard so the real test will come when I hit with someone else and have to control their pace.



Topspin Backhand (one hand): Improved control, better feel, lots of power, didn't hit as many topspin backhands but I think the spin was a little easier to come by...the forehand is more dramatic in it's improvement though because I was not having as much difficulty with my backhand using this racquet to begin with.


SLICE BACK HAND: NOTICABLE DIFFERENCE, THIS TIME FOR THE WORSE, NOW MY HEAD SEEMS TO OPEN UP ALOT MORE AND THE BALL IS SAILING MUCH MORE, AND EVEN WHEN I'M ABLE TO KEEP IT LOW, IT SEEMS AS THOUGH THERE'S MORE SPIN AND LESS POWER..

So without the lead tape the Slice backhand seemed more powerful, I could keep it lower, it was easy to keep it low and have it just clear the net and land deep, now It feels like it's going to sail high and have less power behind it but with more slice, I don't know if it will be as effective because it seems harder to drive through the ball and get it to travel on a straight course, this is very strange to me.



SERVE: WOW!!! It's almost impossible to miss a first serve now...because I can't hit a FLAT first serve anymore!!! Every serve I hit now has lots of topspin like a kick serve, but I'm not trying to kick serve it!!!

It's also harder to hit the sweet spot on the serve now, I seem to be hitting it nearer the top more often, but I probably just need to adjust to the new weight.

I actually did figure out how to alter my swing on the serve to make it Flat-er towards the end (still with a little topspin), and had some good results.

But the topspin it now adds on the serve is very useful, the ball still has alot of pace, but now it's much easier to get my 1st serve in with amazing consistency (although harder to hit a flat serve).



Now, I want to add more to try out the taping system you layed out for me, but I'm able to hit my forehand with such amazing confidence with this setup that now I'm hesitant, but maybe this can be improved even further...

Oh YEAH, here is the most important question!!

WHAT HAVE I DONE TO MY RACQUET??

Have I taken away some power and added lots of spin with this setup??

That's what it seems like but then again now I can hit my forehand with incredible power, much more then before, but I guess I should attribute this to the fact that I can hit out with confidence now and swing much harder without feeling like the racquet is a rocket launcher.



one last note: On The Head of the Frame, I aligned the lead tape roughly along the length of the O-Ports, but I noticed after applying the lead tape that on ONE side of the racquet - the O-PORTS start and end slightly further up the frame, so actually the tape is every so slightly mis-aligned on each side of the racquet, will this have an effect?

http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/descpageRCPRINCE-PO3S.html

^I was wrong about the weight of the 03 silver, it's actually 9.6 ounces strung, so the racquet should weigh about 10.9 ounces now???

travlerajm
09-29-2006, 08:29 PM
Ooooooooooo K

[the monkeys]I'M A BELIEVER[/the monkeys]


Modifications have an immense effect!!!


Check this out, I have no idea what I've done but it's very interesting, I'm excited so bear with me and inform me if I forgot to mention any crucial details:


When I got the lead tape the store only had 2 left, I went back today but no more yet so I decided to start off with the 36 grams (approx) of lead tape, and add more later.


First, I cut up 36" of lead tape (about 18grams) half in 3" segments and the other half in 1.5" segments and wrapped it around the butt of the handle (conical part) centered 0.5" from the butt like you said, plus I put another 2 grams stuck to the bottom of the handle where the 'P' is (flat part)

So total I have 19 Grams on the Butt of the handle.

Then I cut the remainder into four 8 1/2" (about) inch segments and put the tape on the inside of the frame aligned roughly with the O-PORTS, so it was centered around 3 and 9 with one layer on each side of the strings if you know what I mean (the frame is wide enough to put one 8 1/2" layer on EACH SIDE OF THE STRINGS on the inside of the frame, on both sides of the racquet (wow I'm confusing myself)

So now I have 17 grams on the head of the racquet in 4 single-layers (2 on each side) that are 9" long on each side of the strings, centered roughly at 3 and 9...

(I was thinking, technically is the tape really at 3 and 9? Since it's 9" long, it actually travels from like 10-8 and 2-4 wit 9 and 3 as the center, is that how you meant for me to apply it???)

NOW, onto the effects!!!


Unfortunately, I couldn't find anyone to hit with so I hit against a good backboard and practiced my serve, for 2 hrs.


FOREHAND: WHOOOOOAA!! I can finally take a full swing without the ball sailing!

It is so easy to apply spin it's ridiculous, and when I shift my hand even further to the far western grip I can swing, literally, as hard as I can, and hit forehands with amazing power and spin, and I SEEM to be able to control the direction of them 100 times better!!! although i was hitting against the backboard so the real test will come when I hit with someone else and have to control their pace.



Topspin Backhand (one hand): Improved control, better feel, lots of power, didn't hit as many topspin backhands but I think the spin was a little easier to come by...the forehand is more dramatic in it's improvement though because I was not having as much difficulty with my backhand using this racquet to begin with.


SLICE BACK HAND: NOTICABLE DIFFERENCE, THIS TIME FOR THE WORSE, NOW MY HEAD SEEMS TO OPEN UP ALOT MORE AND THE BALL IS SAILING MUCH MORE, AND EVEN WHEN I'M ABLE TO KEEP IT LOW, IT SEEMS AS THOUGH THERE'S MORE SPIN AND LESS POWER..

So without the lead tape the Slice backhand seemed more powerful, I could keep it lower, it was easy to keep it low and have it just clear the net and land deep, now It feels like it's going to sail high and have less power behind it but with more slice, I don't know if it will be as effective because it seems harder to drive through the ball and get it to travel on a straight course, this is very strange to me.



SERVE: WOW!!! It's almost impossible to miss a first serve now...because I can't hit a FLAT first serve anymore!!! Every serve I hit now has lots of topspin like a kick serve, but I'm not trying to kick serve it!!!

It's also harder to hit the sweet spot on the serve now, I seem to be hitting it nearer the top more often, but I probably just need to adjust to the new weight.

I actually did figure out how to alter my swing on the serve to make it Flat-er towards the end (still with a little topspin), and had some good results.

But the topspin it now adds on the serve is very useful, the ball still has alot of pace, but now it's much easier to get my 1st serve in with amazing consistency (although harder to hit a flat serve).



Now, I want to add more to try out the taping system you layed out for me, but I'm able to hit my forehand with such amazing confidence with this setup that now I'm hesitant, but maybe this can be improved even further...

Oh YEAH, here is the most important question!!

WHAT HAVE I DONE TO MY RACQUET??

Have I taken away some power and added lots of spin with this setup??

That's what it seems like but then again now I can hit my forehand with incredible power, much more then before, but I guess I should attribute this to the fact that I can hit out with confidence now and swing much harder without feeling like the racquet is a rocket launcher.



one last note: On The Head of the Frame, I aligned the lead tape roughly along the length of the O-Ports, but I noticed after applying the lead tape that on ONE side of the racquet - the O-PORTS start and end slightly further up the frame, so actually the tape is every so slightly mis-aligned on each side of the racquet, will this have an effect?

http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/descpageRCPRINCE-PO3S.html

^I was wrong about the weight of the 03 silver, it's actually 9.6 ounces strung, so the racquet should weigh about 10.9 ounces now???

You've basically turned your racquet into a lighter stiffer version of the modern pro-style polarized setup.

My previous post in this thread in response to Fitzroy's questions might help explain what you have done to you racquet - I would use this a starting point, since it will be more useful than my stabs without any knowledge of your game. It sounds like you are already getting close to a setup than can work. Next, you might try adding about 10g to the top of the handle about 5.5" from the butt (it might help stabilize your slice a little, and solidify your serve). Also, you will be able to adjust the power and spin level by adjusting the weight in the hoop. If you subtract a gram from 3+9, it should flatten out your shots and add power. Adding another gram at 3+9 should further reduce power, and maybe even add more spin.

Voltron
09-29-2006, 08:57 PM
Don't know if this has been said before, but on a wilson(or any other raquet with a step, or even if it doesn't have a step) just pop the buttcap off and put the tape on the inside. Yeah, if you want to get to buttcap off on a prince, drop it lightly and the buttcap will fly off into the upper atmospere.

Voltron

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-29-2006, 09:59 PM
I couldn't get the buttcap off of this prince, I tried popping it out with my fingers but it wouldn't budge, but I only took the outer grip off, not the original one that came on the racket which is still new so i don't want to take it off, I put a thin grip over before i put the lead tape on so it sticks to that not the original grip.

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-29-2006, 10:14 PM
You've basically turned your racquet into a lighter stiffer version of the modern pro-style polarized setup.

My previous post in this thread in response to Fitzroy's questions might help explain what you have done to you racquet - I would use this a starting point, since it will be more useful than my stabs without any knowledge of your game. It sounds like you are already getting close to a setup than can work. Next, you might try adding about 10g to the top of the handle about 5.5" from the butt (it might help stabilize your slice a little, and solidify your serve). Also, you will be able to adjust the power and spin level by adjusting the weight in the hoop. If you subtract a gram from 3+9, it should flatten out your shots and add power. Adding another gram at 3+9 should further reduce power, and maybe even add more spin.


nice, yeah I think I will tweak it some more using your recommendations as a guideline...

3 questions when you have a chance


What does "polarized setup" mean?

How do I figure out how headlight it is? I would like to make it just slightly headlight say about 2 or 3 points headlight, is my current setup still head heavy?

By "3 and 9" do you mean I should stack the tape just at the exact 3 and 9 positions, because before I thought you said to make it 9" long but centered at 3 and 9??



mucho gracias

travlerajm
09-30-2006, 03:00 AM
nice, yeah I think I will tweak it some more using your recommendations as a guideline...

3 questions when you have a chance


What does "polarized setup" mean?

How do I figure out how headlight it is? I would like to make it just slightly headlight say about 2 or 3 points headlight, is my current setup still head heavy?

By "3 and 9" do you mean I should stack the tape just at the exact 3 and 9 positions, because before I thought you said to make it 9" long but centered at 3 and 9??



mucho gracias

Polarized means having less weight near the balance point and more weight near the ends. Polarizing a frame's weight distribution tends to make it more spin-friendly.

To find the balance. Just find the point at which you can balance it over the edge of the ruler. Note that location carefully, then measure from the butt to that point. Your current setup is still slightly head-heavy. One suggestion I have for when you place tape on the upper handle when you are still in "test mode" is to keep the paper backing to the lead tape on. Then wrap it around the outside of the grip, and secure it with masking tape. That way you can do quick adjustments on the fly without ruining the tape until you find a setup that you want to make more permanent.

The way you placed the weight at 3+9 is fine. Using longer strips results in a slightly higher swingweight, but since the whole point is to increase the swingweight, that's not a problem in your case. Also, using longer strips generally helps with the feel by making the sweet spot feel larger.

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
09-30-2006, 09:12 AM
Yeah, you're advice sounds spot on because the racquet was shifting in my hand a little more then usual on far-off center hits, so I will try to add some tape on the upper handle (starting with your guideline of 5.5" from the butt) using masking tape until I Find the right spot to stablize the racket somewhat... and I think I'll take a little off the frame and add a little to the butt to make it a little less head heavy since I don't need quite as much spin as I'm getting right now.


...hmmm, or maybe I should just add to the butt and upper handle without removing any from the head, I'll try that first.


Thanks man, It's nice to have somebody walk you through this I don't know if I would have tried adding so much tape without a little assistance and the people at the tennis shops around here weren't as knowledgable when it comes to mods (in FACT they told me "absolutely don't add tape to the butt it won't do anything"


Tennis Warehouse should pay you for posting here!

haerdalis
09-30-2006, 09:53 AM
I tried customizing a wilson ntour-two today. Added 18 g to the hoop at 3 and 9 and 30 g to the upper handle. I must say I was not at all happy with the result. It still has that hollow feel. It played better than before but not at all like my prostaff tour 90 or the POG. Next I will try it with the O3 white.
Very interesting to hear how this silver turns out in the end.

Midlife crisis
09-30-2006, 10:03 PM
I'm probably one of the few players here who have customized a granny stick to the degree that you have. I'm using a Prince Thunder RIP, which is usually about 9.5 ounces and quite head heavy. I've modified mines to be 13 ounces and 11 points headlight, through the use of a lot of weight at the bottom of the handle, plus weight at the 3 and 9 o'clock positions. The added weight on the hoop adds stability to the racquet, while the weight in the handle reduces racquet power. This is a highly polarized setup that you may not like.

Travlrajm played with this racquet briefly when we hit this past summer. It is a significantly different feel than his typical racquet setup.

travlerajm
10-01-2006, 02:33 AM
I'm probably one of the few players here who have customized a granny stick to the degree that you have. I'm using a Prince Thunder RIP, which is usually about 9.5 ounces and quite head heavy. I've modified mines to be 13 ounces and 11 points headlight, through the use of a lot of weight at the bottom of the handle, plus weight at the 3 and 9 o'clock positions. The added weight on the hoop adds stability to the racquet, while the weight in the handle reduces racquet power. This is a highly polarized setup that you may not like.

Travlrajm played with this racquet briefly when we hit this past summer. It is a significantly different feel than his typical racquet setup.

I found Midlife's setup to be soft and cushy, very spinny, moderately low-powered, with decent control on groundies.

I was testing out a James Blake style depolarized setup with my NXG that day (an exercise in turning a very spin-friendly stock frame into a flat-hitting racquet).

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
10-01-2006, 09:18 AM
Interesting to hear about different people's setups and attempts at customization, the ntour 2 starts out a bit heavier then the 03 prince so you may not want to add too much weight.


So midlife crisis, are you staying with your current setup, you like how the thunder rip plays now?

AgassisGoneEndOfAnEra :(
10-01-2006, 09:51 AM
I have more to add about my setup with the 03 Silver, I hit with a friend without changing anything and here's how it felt in match play:


Forehand: GREAT, exactly what I expected from hitting against the wall, much easier to control and place my forehand, effortless topspin so I could swing alot harder and not have the ball sail...when my friend came to net I was passing him at will on both sides, something I was having great difficulty with, and hitting approach shots from about the service line I did not hit them long most of the time as before. (althoughI don't think the feel of this racquet will never be like my old dunlop obviously, the fame is too different)


Topspin backhand: GREAT, lots of power I could drive through the balls and still get some topspin, lots more control it seems like.


Slice backhand: not so good, as expected, it was sailing a bit and when I tried to correct it I was hitting into the net.



Serve: Good, but much more difficult to hit the sweet stop on the serve, and harder to hit the flat serves, but I hit quite a few aces especially on the add side with the topspin serve down the middle.


Volleys: not a huge difference, still Great although slightly less pop (although maybe I Just wasn't hitting them squarely, I only hit a few volleys), but the main thing here is the racquet felt somewhat less maneuverable at net.


So basically it was just as I had expected based on hitting against the wall...


But, one serious concern, I think the swingweight is up there, when i hold the racquet it doesn't feel that heavy, but when swung it feels much heavier and especially on serves (which I think might be responsible for my difficulty hitting the sweet spot)

I wasn't concentrating on the swingweight when playing so it didn't really bother me, it felt fine except my serve was more difficult to hit just right.


But about 10 minutes after I stopped playing, the elbow started to twinge with a slight hint of tennis elbow...and I know I don't have terrible form (until I get really tired and my footwork starts to go)...I think it's swingweight is too much for the serve, or something about the balance is hurting my arm when I serve, plus off center hits seem to be a bit harsher on the arm now compared to before I put the tape on.


I'm thinking about taking 6-8 grams off the head, or adding to the upper handle and takign a little bit off the head....but I hope that doesnt mess with my forehand too much...


I'll report back

FitzRoy
10-01-2006, 10:45 AM
Spin is mostly a function of string tension. The lower your string tension, the more spin you can generate. But at low tension, you need to somehow make sure that your frame is low-powered, or else your racquet will be a rocket launcher.

There are two general ways to reduce power by adjusting the weight distribution. The first way is to use a very low hitting weight. This is how stock racquets are designed. But by using a low hitting weight, lots of spin potential is lost due to twisting of the frame.

Thanks for the answer travlerajm, I found that entire post to be very interesting. As usual, though, it led me to further thinking on the topic. When you say spin potential is lost due to twisting of the frame, do you mean due to low twistweight? Or is this unrelated?

Thinking about this, I was looking at two racquets that I thought might be interesting to customize, and I wanted to get your thoughts on them.

The first is the Volkl DNX 10 Mid. With stock specs of 331 SW, 340 grams, and a 12" balance point, this is one of the only racquets that I've run numbers for and came out with a stock form recoil weight above 180 - in fact, unless my numbers are off, it seems to be a massive 188. What I was thinking with this was to add 15-16 grams to 3+9, which should give it a very nice twistweight. The recoil weight pushes above 190, with SW surpassing 355. The hitting weight, however, is still well below 10; would this setup allow a player to string very loose but not lose spin potential (since it has a high twistweight)?

The other interesting racquet was the nCode nFury. The MidPlus is a very light frame, at 281 grams, but unlike other frames typical of this weight, it has a flex rating of 50. The low stock weight and SW allows it to imitate virtually any pro setup, but with that incredibly low flex rating. Anyone have thoughts on this stick?

AgassiGone - Please continue to keep us updated on your tests with this racquet. I find it very interesting because it's opened a whole new line of thinking for me on racquet customization - using racquets that start off very light. I'd never really considered this before. When I read your last post, I had a similar thought that you expressed: to make it a better serving stick, perhaps try removing some of the weight from the head and apply it to the top of the handle, to reduce the swingweight. You might notice increased difficulty with groundstroke control, though. I'm still trying to find a good SW balance between my serves and groundstrokes; my current LM Radical setup is definitely too cumbersome on serves, but shifting weight from head to top of handle makes my groundstrokes too powerful.

Midlife crisis
10-01-2006, 07:13 PM
So midlife crisis, are you staying with your current setup, you like how the thunder rip plays now?

I am sticking with it, because I haven't had the time to switch. I like the feel of a stiff racquet, and want it extended length. The racquet is too large and it's compromised a bit because it's too polarized in weight. Also because of the size, I have to string it up really tight - 68 lbs with SPPP, which is just above the maximum recommended string tension. As a result, I've already broken one racquet because the throat collapsed. There aren't many racquets in the 100 sq. in. range that fit this, and the ones I've demo'ed all have had non-poly strings so I can't really tell how much of my dislike for the racquet is due to the strings, or due to the frame.

bill1linda
10-20-2006, 04:03 PM
I recently bought an O3 Silver which I asked to be strung at 67, the supposed max. I am an old 3.5 player and was looking for something with a little more power, a big sweetspot and control. This racket had it all except control. Also, the strings moved all over the place. I could hardly hit any pace at all or it would go out. So I restrung it myself at 70, and it plays great. My old racket was a black and yelllow Head Radical OS which had great control, but not much power. This has turned out to be a great replacement.