1930's SEMI FLAT TOPS & DIAGONAL STRINGING

Discussion in 'Classic Racquet Talk' started by rodracquet, Apr 6, 2013.

  1. rodracquet

    rodracquet Rookie

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    The semi flat top craze re emerged from Australia thanks to Jack Crawford trying Norman Brookes (Wimbledon Champ 1907,1914) racquet at his holiday home. Jack really liked how it felt. The GM of Alexander Racquet company took away Norman's old one and fashioned up some for Jack to use and after winning Wimbledon in 1933, the Australian racquet industry took off with a full range of oval/semi flat top designs, plain and diagonal stringing and a massive influx of design enhancements colour, wrappings, shaped throats and shafts etc. It put Australian makers on the map and a huge export industry resulted for Slazenger, Hedley, Brewer and Alexander.

    Here are three........

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    Last edited: Apr 7, 2013
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  2. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    So this is where Yonex got their head shape from.

    Must have taken some work to get the wood shaped correctly.
     
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  3. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Cool looking rackets, especially with the diagonal stringing!
     
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  4. rodracquet

    rodracquet Rookie

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    Not sure it is that clear from the photo but the Slazenger on the right has considerable work with a raised throat area all contoured etc and similar on the shaft. So there was considerable effort going into the premium racquets.

    Other things we being tried in Australia in the also. Slazenger produced a STREAMLINE which was a tear drop shape all along the shaft and around the head. If you can picture that it means thinner one side than the other. They also brought out a series called FLOATING POWER which involved a mercury filled tube inserted into the shaft. This was also done in the 1890's the theory being that during the shot added weight would give you more power. A small company EMPIRE launched a wind up balance adjustment system from a key wind in the butt cap. The mechanism inside moved a weight up or down to suit.

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  5. rodracquet

    rodracquet Rookie

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    Another pic of the EMPIRE

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  6. joe sch

    joe sch Hall of Fame

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    The Alexander rackets make for nice displays especially with the tennis history they represent. I remember being very surprised the first time a found one and realized it was circa 1930s and a flat top.
     
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  7. rodracquet

    rodracquet Rookie

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    The Alexander racquet company is a great story. Book available on this company so if you would like to get a copy I can put you in touch with the author.

    The Slazenger is quite heavily worked with scalloped shaft and throat treatments. This pic gives you a bit more of a close up look. Rare to see on any racquet.

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  8. rodracquet

    rodracquet Rookie

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    This is an excellent book highly illustrated with photos etc....plus a great story. The author is a relative of one of the founders. They are in fact establishing a museum in the old factory and have some excellent pieces in their collection, naturally. They found the old letters that used to adorn the factory under the building some 50 years later, so these are now back up in real life.

    May have more soon on a very special model they have just uncovered.

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