Best tennis Ball Machine

Discussion in 'Other Equipment' started by gugafan05, Jan 24, 2007.

  1. gugafan05

    gugafan05 Rookie

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    Which would you guys buy if you had $1000?
     
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  2. classic tennis

    classic tennis Semi-Pro

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    Any lobster machine
     
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  3. Owen0501

    Owen0501 Rookie

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    I can only comment on a Tennis Tutor. I have a model 3 plus.

    you can pick up a demo machine from Sports Tutor direct for which you can pick up for $1099 with the 2line function
     
    #3
  4. Bolivian10s

    Bolivian10s Rookie

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    Sports Tutors on Sale!!

    Wow you are right, the demos for the tennis tutor plus came down in price a bit. $870 for a tennis tutor with full warranty...not bad. I would buy one, but I already have one.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2007
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  5. Attila the tennis Bum

    Attila the tennis Bum Banned

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    The simple original Tennis Tutor.

    It is compact and light and rolls out like carry on luggage on an airplane!

    The best thing about it is the company. They are so freaking nice. Anything you need they just replace and help you out.
     
    #5
  6. Owen0501

    Owen0501 Rookie

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    Yes the Sports tutor team are excellent when it comes to providing support! Very helpful.

    The machine is excellent and highly portable.
     
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  7. biohazard

    biohazard Guest

    Tennis Tutor Customer service

    I bought a used Tennis Tutor Model 2 off ****, had it for about 2 weeks. The thing works flawless. Best of all is the customer support at Sports Tutor is second to none. These guys are great! I called them to ask some general maintaince questions and they wound up Fed-X ing me out an updated Smart Charger (freak'n free ). I did'nt even ask for one. They said this one would work better and I would be happier with it. Go figure.: They bend over backward and are incredibly helpful. I'm sold. I will only buy Tennis Tutor from now on. :D
     
    #7
  8. ou812

    ou812 New User

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    I took the advice of many on this board and purchased a Tutor Plus Player model. UPS dropped it off last Friday and so far I have not been impressed. The machine arrived filthy and there are lots of marks and runs in the finish. I called Sports Tutor because I thought I got a used machine, but they said the blemishes are tooling marks from the mold.
    I took it to the court and their transport system is awkward to say the least. I'm just over 6 feet and the handle is way too short. The hopper system is nothing but four little cheap pieces of plastic, very disappointing on a $1600 machine. I only got to use the machine for a half hour on Saturday before the rain came. Everything seemed to work fine, I'll know more shortly. It's just a little depressing to spend lots of $$ and get something that looks like it was assembled in somebody’s garage.
     
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  9. Attila the tennis Bum

    Attila the tennis Bum Banned

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    You probably bought it from a third party rather than directly from tennis tutor. If you call tennis tutor directly they will make you satisfied. they are awesome . Just give them a call.

    I am 6'1" and I have the original version. i love the handle and I have no problems with the machine. Maybe you got a lemon?
     
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  10. ou812

    ou812 New User

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    I ordered from Tutor direct so that's not the issue. Everybody on here talks about Tutor's infallible customer support, makes me wonder if they work for Tutor? I called Tutor, they answered my questions but I was not blown away with their answers, or their "support." Before I ordered another company told me they suspected Tutor had their machines made in Mexico. Does anybody know if this is true?
     
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  11. Attila the tennis Bum

    Attila the tennis Bum Banned

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    You are the very person that has ever had this experience. It sounds like you have some sort of an agenda?
     
    #11
  12. Jack & Coke

    Jack & Coke Professional

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    #12
  13. mrw

    mrw Semi-Pro

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    Please do as I am close to buying one
     
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  14. AR15

    AR15 Professional

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    I also recently purchased a Silent Partner Pro. It seemed like the best value (most features for the money) in comparing it to the competing machines.

    I haven't used it long enough to post a review. But so far, the people at Silent Partner have been very prompt and good to work with.
     
    #14
  15. Jack & Coke

    Jack & Coke Professional

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    I agree 100%

    I'm very happy with their customer service. I called them up before purchasing (to ask a bunch of questions), and got the same feeling.
     
    #15
  16. ou812

    ou812 New User

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    Attila, seriously, do you work for Tutor? You must have some stake in the company because you are taking this way to personally. I highly doubt I'm the first person who has doubted the quality of my Tutor ball machine. Since you think I have an agenda I'll air my other complaint, I don't think the Tutor Player model comes close to 85 mph. I have a friend into archery who has a chronograph (much more accurate than radar guns) and I plan on doing a real speed test.
     
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  17. Attila the tennis Bum

    Attila the tennis Bum Banned

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    Dude. Just run a search on the tutor. I have never seen ANYONE else say that the company was not helpful. Thats whats so suspicous about you.

    Its one thing to have an opinion about the machine,,.......but as far as service goes you are completely alone. This company is the best. They are so nice!

    I guarantee that no one will say that they were treated badly. Run a search. I dare you.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2007
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  18. 103xStateChamp

    103xStateChamp Rookie

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    My tennis club uses Tutor and these kids got court time (non-memebers) they were playing with it and they broke it after they broke it they tried to hide it it was found 4 days later not working. They Gave us A NEW ONE for FREE an UPDATED VERSION $600 more than the original they are GREAT:grin:
     
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  19. Jack & Coke

    Jack & Coke Professional

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    I visted the Tennis Tutor factory in Burbank last month.

    They were really nice and demoed their machines for me on their custom tennis court in their parking lot.

    I got to see the Wilson machine, the TT, and TT plus in action.

    The wilson was noticably weaker than the TT and TT+ in terms of power.

    The TT (no spin) was very nice.

    the TT + (spin) was better, but MUCH larger in size.

    I wanted to purchased a TT+ (I'm local), but decided that the machine HAD TO FIT in the trunk of my car. They were nice enough to wheel a floor model out to the street to see if it would fit in the trunk of my car (Mercedes E420)... sadly, it did not :(

    I wanted to keep my business local and choose either Sports Tutor or Lobster (North Hollywood), but I took a chance and went with Silent Partner based on their reputation and the video demonstrations on their website.

    I have been EXTREMELY happy with my purchase so far!

    It's like Canon DSLR or Nikon DSLR... you can't go wrong with either choice. Just a little different flavor that's all. ;)
     
    #19
  20. Matt986

    Matt986 New User

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    My first machine was the Tennis Tutor Plus, and I am really happy with it so far, no problems yet! *knock on wood*
     
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  21. biohazard

    biohazard Guest

    I just wanna say that I absolutely in no way am affiliated with Sports Tutor. I'm just a regular league 3.5-4.0 player who bought a second hand Tennis Tutor and happen to be satisfied with it. I just purchased the basic model, no spin or anything. The thing is light, I can easily carry it, my tennis bag, and a basket of balls to the court.( one trip) Now, I only paid $600 for it, so my expectations were lower than if I would have paid $1600. Mine does seem to have some slight brush marks, but not too noticable. I have called customer service several times and compared to some other companies I have delt with in the past, they undeniably have above average customer support.:)
     
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  22. Attila the tennis Bum

    Attila the tennis Bum Banned

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    Now do you see that you are completely alone in your opinion? Say what you will about the machine but the customer support is legendary.
     
    #22
  23. maillotjaune

    maillotjaune Guest

    Sorry Attila

    I ordered a Tennis Tutor plus last July and had nothing but problems with it. In the course of the first month a motor that shoots the balls out failed then the motherboard died. Both times Tennis Tutor's customer support treated me like it was my fault and gave me the run around. I finally got both of those problems fixed and the motor that feeds the balls died the next month. I told the people at Tennis Tutor that I felt I had a lemon and wanted a new unit or a complete refund. They gave me the run around again so I finally had my lawyer contact them which fixed the problem. I had problems with a Silent Partner a few years back as well but their customer service was actually very good, unlike Tutor. I now own a Playmate which is a real ball machine with real customer support, unlike Tutor. Sorry to burst your bubble Attila but I know of several more people in my league that also had problems with Tutor, they just don't post here non-stop like yourself.
     
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  24. Attila the tennis Bum

    Attila the tennis Bum Banned

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    Yah nice try. I was waiting for that. A new user with only one prior post suddenly appear here! Sounds like some HUGE coincidence. Hmmmmm????

    In your one and only other post you also hated the silent partner.

    Whats even stranger is that your partner in crime has only posted in one other topic as well .

    That taken together with the fact that you are the only ones that I have ever heard complain about the TT customer support just adds up to to many coincidences. Rather it sounds like someone is trying to push the Sam Xlr8?

    In any event I did a search with the search terms of "Tennis Tutor customer". Everyone raves about the customer support. :

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/search.php?searchid=567309
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2007
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  25. maillotjaune

    maillotjaune Guest

    You sir have problems. I hope Sports Tutor is paying you well for all of your work.
     
    #25
  26. Attila the tennis Bum

    Attila the tennis Bum Banned

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    I have simply stated the facts. Do the search and just see how many people RAVE about the customer service at TT.

    I do not work for TT but its really disgusting when some people go out and try and ruin someones business when they have been nothing but nice to everyone. You have fooled no one.

    Again you are entitled to your opinion as to the machine and I am not defending sports tutor in that regard. But as far as service these people are really nice and you are really out of line for slandering these honest and very decent people.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2007
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  27. richw76

    richw76 Rookie

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    Due to my work schedule it is difficult finding a hitting partner during work days. I used to have a nice facility and I could rent a Playmate for 12$ an hour and if I went over they didn't care, but maybe due to some of that they have closed down.

    I tried a tennis tutor the other day at a local park. I think it was the cheapest model, and looked beat to hec% ...... , I gave it a go anyway but it didn't even compare in shot speed/depth/consistancy. What I mean with the playmate I could turn on the oscillator and have a nice deep flater or topspin heavy ball with real good pace. Out of every 100 balls I would say 10 flat balls would go into the net. When I used the TT teh other day maybe one of every 5 balls even went on teh court. Was this machine broken? or is that the way it hits? I want to find a good quality used machine.


    From the other posts it sounds like I have three choices, SilentPartner, Playmate, TennisTutor. Has anyone demoed them all? If I can fidn one in good working order which is my best bet?
     
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  28. Jack & Coke

    Jack & Coke Professional

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    The former.
     
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  29. superstition

    superstition Hall of Fame

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    Why is it that finding info, like detailed reviews, about ball machines is so difficult? And, why is this topic filled with bickering and accusations?

    Tennis Warehouse doesn't have much of a selection in ball machines, and I haven't been able to find reviews of most of them. I'd like a machine that will send fast balls and operate on battery power. A machine that sends slow balls is worthless for me because I only have trouble returning fast shots, especially if they have a lot of topspin. I'd like to know what ball machines produce the best speed and also have the most topspin.
     
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  30. Jack & Coke

    Jack & Coke Professional

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    Take your pick: Silent Partner, Tennis Tutor Plus, Lobster Elite... etc.

    Most of these big name machines WILL rocket balls faster than you can handle. You will NOT be using the fastest speed settings on these things.
     
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  31. tophus

    tophus Guest

    I have the silent partner pro, used it now for 3-4 weeks. Has a lot of options..oscilator, remote; definitely can launch the ball fast and can produce inhuman spin. My only complaint is that the to use the programmable oscilator properly, the unit has to be 'square with the baseline' and sometimes this can be hard to figure out.
     
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  32. Suprslice

    Suprslice New User

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    Well, after a lot of research, I've decided to buy the TT Player model. On the pro side, no other machine has the player feature that TT does in this price range. Lobster's triple oscillation claims to simulate a player but from reading reviews, the elevation feature is below average and it ends up being a random sweep based oscillation...which is fine, but for the same money, I believe the TT player does more. Tennis Warehouse Australia has a nice review and rates this feature highly. In addition to grooving my strokes, I'm hoping the TT will help with movement & getting into position - which is where the player mode should help.

    The big downside of the TT Player of course is that it won't fit in my midsize trunk. But I have a van too so I'll just have to use that with the ball machine. I've been going back and forth between lobster & TT (and SP thanks to threads on TalkTennis) but it's going to be TT at the end of the day.

    Being holiday season, I'm hoping to get the best deal from one the big retailers - like ********* or SportsAuthority. However, ********* says they don't work with TT (Only lobster). Sports Authority does but I don't see the player model - only a machine called Jugs that looks awfully close to a TT Player.

    Anyway - if someone has suggestions on a retailer that can throw me a 15% discount (if I"m lucky) being the holiday season, I'd love to know. My friend who bought a lobster said he got a 20% discount from ********* - which is what got me thinking about the big retailers. For now the best I'm getting is $100 off from Swetka's tennis shop in Mountainview CA.

    Anyway - I'll hope to send a review here once I get the machine and play with it. I'm quite excited!
     
    #32
  33. Leelord337

    Leelord337 Hall of Fame

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    So am I. They look like they work awesome..u can buy demo'd silent partner machines on the big auction site too. sold by silentpartner a lot cheaper

    I previously owned a TT pro lite ac w/oscillation and paid $575 shipped. I used it for over 1000 hours, lol, and sold it on e bay for $10 less than i paid for it. It was like using a machine for free! I would recommend getting the AC version since it never slows down after hours of play.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2007
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  34. NetMuncher

    NetMuncher New User

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    ..........
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2008
    #34
  35. Jack & Coke

    Jack & Coke Professional

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    This one?

    http://www.playmatetennismachines.com/portable.htm

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    The VOLLEY comes loaded with all of the options.
    KEY FEATURES
    • Removeable 6-Hour Battery-Pack
    • Light-weight at 46 lbs* ​
    • 2-Line Oscillator with
      Variable Electronic Width &
      Programmable Random
      Left OR Right ​
    • Commercial Remote Control
    MSRP$1,695.00 USD
     
    #35
  36. Suprslice

    Suprslice New User

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    I've heard that playmate is a very solid machine. But it's really bulky (30 in tall). I live in an apt and have to drive to public courts. And I don't really have space to store something that big. Not that the TT player is small or anything but at 20x20x20 it'll fit into my closet and I can transport it a little more easily to the courts & back.
     
    #36
  37. NetMuncher

    NetMuncher New User

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    ...............
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2008
    #37
  38. Jack & Coke

    Jack & Coke Professional

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    This would be awesome to practice ROS with:


    [​IMG]

    (The serve lift is sold separately.)

    [​IMG]

    Throws any spin imaginable!

    THE SLAM... The name says it all!

    The SLAM is the fastest ball machine in the world. It can throw any type of spin, including:
    • Left-handed Slice ​
    • Right-handed Slice ​
    • Left-handed Kick ​
    • Right-handed Kick ​
    • American Twist ​
    The SLAM can land a 120 MPH serve every time. It can randomly serve to a player on the inside, the middle, or the outside. The unique four wheel design allows the SLAM to grip the tennis ball like no other machine in the world. Order our drills DVD, "Drills, Drills, Drills" to see the SLAM in action.

    KEY FEATURES
    • 120 MPH Serves ​
    • Any Slice or Kick ​
    • 7 Distinct Programmable Shots ​
    • 7 Shot Delays ​
    • Programmable Random Shot Sequence ​
    • Great For Enhancing Ball Recognition Skills ​
    • Upgradeable and Interchangeable​
    • Accepts ALL Controllers​
    • Holds 300 Balls​
    • 7 Position Programmable Electronic Direction with Programmable Random​
    • Variable Electronic Height​
    • User-friendly Controller ​
    • SERVE LIFT Friendly
    • 2 Function Remote Control
    • (On/Off with drill reset)
    • 3 Year Limited Parts Warranty ​
    MSRP $7,495.00 USD
     
    #38
  39. mkisawesome

    mkisawesome New User

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    I am a tennis coach for our local Junior High School. I also teach/instruct tennis lessons/improvement. I thought a ball machine would be a great aid for these tasks. I purchased a Prince Model 4 (almost identical to the SAM-SP4) from a friend. This machine works great. It has spin, 2-line, basic oscillation, electronic elevation, etc. It feeds at 75-80mph at max. I'm pretty happy with the machine itself. When I got the machine, the original owner lost the 10-function remote. I called Master Sports and they offerred to sell me a replacement remote at about $150. I can't really say that their support was the greatest, but they were helpful enough to answer my questions about the machine and about purchasing a remote. (P.S. I'm still looking for a remote if anyone has one.)
     
    #39
  40. gugafan05

    gugafan05 Rookie

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    I had a SAM SP-1 ball machine. It was a piece of garbage. if you are looking for good pace, dream on. The machine is supposed to send balls up to 85 mph. If you turn the speed all the way up and the spin all the way down, (produces the fastest possible ball) the ball comes out at about 65 mph. With topspin it comes at about 40 mph.
    I know about ball machines in detail, I took mine apart and talked to some engineers about the specs as well as the specs of others such as the TT. They all boast big speeds, but don't be fooled. That garabge about inhuman speeds is crap. I don't know if the people saying this are 70 yrs old or what but I can out hit the topspin ball all day and the flat ball on these machines comes at such a bad trajectory, it is unrealistic. Most humans hit the ball with at least some spin even if the hit relatively flat. The only good machines as far as pace and spin are the ac machines. They get a lot more power and thus can run the machines at much higher speeds. I have yet to find a good dc powered (battery) ball machine. The only one I would look at is the playmate portable. Hope this helps.
     
    #40
  41. tennisdad65

    tennisdad65 Hall of Fame

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    Now I know how the pro's return 120 mph serves so easily :)
     
    #41
  42. mrw

    mrw Semi-Pro

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    Bought one & love it. Highly recommended.
     
    #42
  43. game set match 46 TIMES!!

    game set match 46 TIMES!! Hall of Fame

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    Reporting the score as two bagels!!
    i bought a lobster elite 3 :)
     
    #43
  44. mrw

    mrw Semi-Pro

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    very nice. Lobster was on my list but SP was a better deal for me & within my budget
     
    #44
  45. Booyah

    Booyah Semi-Pro

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    Lobster Elite 1 Ball Machine. $1089
    Very good portable machine. [​IMG]
     
    #45
  46. f1 tech

    f1 tech Semi-Pro

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    I got a new TT Plus a while back for $900. I had a coupon for 25% off the regular price of $1200. I couldn't pass it up.
     
    #46
  47. dman72

    dman72 Hall of Fame

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    Where'd you get that coupon.

    My main issue with the TT+ is that it is..friggin huge. I borrowed from someone once and my wife said that it was like having another person in our condo. I don't understand with with TT you have to double the size of the machine to get spin..I mean I know why the have to, but couldn't they have found an alternate design? I have a TT 2 I bought used and now that it's working..it's very good.
     
    #47
  48. x-height

    x-height New User

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    How's reliability with the Lobster machines?
     
    #48
  49. f1 tech

    f1 tech Semi-Pro

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    I got it from fog dog . com. They had everything for 25% off, but it's expired now.
     
    #49
  50. f1 tech

    f1 tech Semi-Pro

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    I heard the Lobsters are noisy. My TT is very quiet.
     
    #50

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