Could I benefit from a new stick?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by eelhc, Apr 8, 2013.

  1. eelhc

    eelhc Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Messages:
    1,636
    After a 25+ year layoff I too got back into tennis last year. I demoed a bunch of racquets when I started but didn't really hit consistently enough to be able to tell the difference. When the Tennis Warehouse was clearing out the Babolat Y game improvement racquets last year, I purchased a Y118, then a Y105, then another Y105 (I started playing USTA so I needed a backup). I got the Y118 and one Y105 strung with the Technifibre NRG2 and the Y105 with the Wilson Hollow Core Pro 17. All at 56#.

    My go to racquet last year was the Y105 with the NRG2. The Wilson Hollow core is crap and I just carried in the bag for backup. Since, I've picked up a stringing machine (actually 2) and I've experimented with different strings + tensions (Ashaway Dynamite Soft 18, Volkl Cyclone 18, Leopard Plus Control, Isospeed Baseline 16...). The Y105 and Dynamite 18 (string at 52#) is my favorite right now.

    I play doubles mostly at NTRP at 3.0 but I when playing well with a partner at my level we hold our own against 3.5s (take a few games here/there and win once in a while). I have a pretty decent all around game for my level (having played before) but with little consistency. I like to play with spin + placement though I can put pace on the ball when I want to.

    The Y105 has been a good racquet but I find that it's got more power than control. I'm 6ft, 190lbs, and fit with average strength. I feel like the racquet is either 0 or 100MPH with very little room in between. If I try to put pace on the serves I am all over the place so I generally try to spin my serves (I've been working on the kick lately too).

    Additionally, the Y105 is a stiff racquet and while I don't have tennis elbow, at times there is discomfort and definitely feel the vibration, particularly on mis-hits. I'm on the computer a lot for work and I think the combination of Tennis/Work is contributing to the discomfort.

    So I'm looking for a "tweener" stick. I would prefer to purchase, give the stick a month (or longer) before deciding since I think I'll keep these sticks at least until I get to NTRP 3.5.

    I'm frugal by nature and purchase stuff on deals/closeout or used and will to sell/pass on (friends/family) what doesn't work... A few options I'm considering:
    1. Do nothing... nothing seriously wrong with the Babolats
    2. My club has a $25 unlimited demo (as many racquets I like) for 1 month but most of those racquets are 4-3/8 (too small for me) and obviously I can't change the string or tension. Any specific racquets I should demo?
    3. The Dunlop Aerogel 300 4D can be had for a song now and I like the fact it's highly customizable (lead tape)
    4. I have an opportunity to purchase a Head Youtek Radical Midplus (old version not a IG or S) for a good price but I think it may be too much Racquet for me at this point
    Any other options I should be considering?
     
    #1
  2. v-verb

    v-verb Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    Messages:
    2,077
    Location:
    Toronto
    Try some old style sticks - Prince Original Graphite mid or OS, Wilson Pro Staff 85, Donnay Dual Cores. Try 11 ounce plus sticks.

    I've done the quest (Babolats, widebodies, extra-long sticks) and so far am liking the Pro Staff 85 with gut the best.

    Just try some older designs - you might like them especially as you're physically strong and don't need over-powered sticks
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2013
    #2
  3. lawrencejin

    lawrencejin Rookie

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2006
    Messages:
    127
    Location:
    NY
    My friend had a great experience with Dunlop 4D 300. It's cheap (and even cheaper if you can find second-hand), suitable for your level, and as you said it is highly customizable as you get better.
     
    #3
  4. JRstriker12

    JRstriker12 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2006
    Messages:
    3,375
    Demo, demo, demo...

    Try a wide variety of sticks from tweeners to the heavier, low powered sticks to see what you like.

    Dunlop 300s and the Radical are decent sticks but you should still try them out first.

    I think the general guideline is to use the heaviest racket you feel comfortable using.

    I'm not a big believer in a single magic stick so try a wide range to see what you like. Don't rule out "tweeners", just because one person loves a Wilson K88 doesn't mean it will be the stick for you.
     
    #4
  5. MikeHitsHard93

    MikeHitsHard93 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2011
    Messages:
    4,454
    Location:
    Michigan
    The radical is not too much stick for you and I think you really would like it.
     
    #5
  6. g_desilva

    g_desilva New User

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    Messages:
    63
    Location:
    Cleveland, OH
    Demo, demo, demo is absolutely right. You shouldn't simply buy a stick because you "think" it will suit your playing style, or because the manufacturer and/or other play testers have said how it works for them. That is merely a way for you to reduce your search for hundreds of sticks, down to maybe 5-10.

    Also, I don't see what the problem would be if you put your own strings into your clubs demo racquets? Seems like you'd be doing them a favor by putting some fresh strings in there at your own cost. And unless you have huge, monstrous hands, a 3/8s is pretty easily built up (temporarily) with a few overgrips - at least enough that you can get the feel for swingweight and overall performance of the stick.
     
    #6
  7. eelhc

    eelhc Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Messages:
    1,636
    It's $25 for unlimited demo's for a month but I have to put the Racquet back after each demo session. I do not mind purchasing a few different sticks (used if possible) for an extended dome and selling what doesn't work out and keeping the ones I like...
     
    #7
  8. RetroSpin

    RetroSpin Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    Messages:
    1,958
    TW has Roddick PD GT's for $99. Heck of a deal on a racquet that would be a big upgrade and very popular so you could easily unload it if you decide you want something else.
     
    #8
  9. v-verb

    v-verb Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    Messages:
    2,077
    Location:
    Toronto
    Not a bad idea - I have a PD and tho I don't use it - it's a good stick for many
     
    #9
  10. g_desilva

    g_desilva New User

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    Messages:
    63
    Location:
    Cleveland, OH
    Alternatively, you could demo straight from TW and not have to worry about the hassle of re-selling them...
     
    #10
  11. spinovic

    spinovic Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2013
    Messages:
    4,667
    I would echo the above sentiments to demo. Use the reviews and feedback on here to narrow your search, but try them out before buying. And, try some variety to see which ones you prefer.
     
    #11

Share This Page