favorite aluminum frames

Discussion in 'Classic Racquet Talk' started by magnut, Mar 31, 2013.

  1. magnut

    magnut Hall of Fame

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    I own and play with A LOT of different frames. My primary frames tend to be graphite based IE...Vacume Pro 90s, Various Pro Kennex, Wilson mid variations, Head XRCs etc. etc. I like them flexy and heavy. All vintage and many disussed here.

    Sometimes I do like to go have a hit with some of the old and even economy aluminum frames of the past. I like the Head edge, Spalding Rebel, Wilson Performer and Ace, Kennex Power ace, Various Princes etc. Yesterday I was out with the Wilson ACE (gold one). I am always surised how well it plays for such a cheap frame. It is aluminum so it does have that certain aluminum feel (as they all have)but it plays well. The only real complaint I have of the aluminum frames is I always need to add a lot of weight in the handle and head to get things somewhat right (my graphite frames are all over 14 ounces most of the time). Once I get them dialed in they are good to go. I can always hit volleys and serves on a dime with the wilson Aces.

    I am not saying I would move away from graphite but sometimes I find an older aluminum frame I like and get 2 or 3 because I use them for fun hits here and there. I actually used the Kennex power Aces as my primary for a few months last year just for the heck of it. They just felt really good for some reason (as do most old kennex frames).

    So what are some of your favorite soda can frames? Dont be shy. Even the old Price Oversizes have there place. Not my favorites but they play pretty well...for an oversize.
     
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  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Head Master for controlled hitting. Blue.
    Head Pro for power and a real game, Red.
    Yonnex Gold for control.
    Yonnex Green OPS for pure serving speed.... nothing beats it.
     
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  3. magnut

    magnut Hall of Fame

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    I have a few of those head masters. They are pretty nice once you get used to the balance. My experience with the Red Head was not that great and the red throught cracked in pretty short order. I like the edge the most of the three.

    Never hit with the yonex gold ( maybe it was green) but did restore one for a little girl whose father (who had passed away) left it to her. It look pretty nice and felt good. I may have to track one down this year.
     
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  4. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Red Head, choice of several top 10 NorCal A mens, and as many A women. Big power, stiff.
    Green Yonex OPS, choice of most of the serving competitors at GoldenGateway's fast serve contest in 1978.
     
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  5. magnut

    magnut Hall of Fame

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    I guess I need to get some then!:) Honestly I dont look for power all that much as I never really need more. I love good feeling racquets though. That Yonex I worked on seemd pretty flexible. Not sure why I liked the Edge more than the red head. Probably because the throught didnt break.

    I had an aluminum frame once endorced by George Hodie. Who George Hodie was I have never been able to find out but it was a nice hitting frame. Dang throught went on that one too!
     
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  6. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    We were probably the biggest 'Red Head' dealer in South Carolina during its heyday and I don't think I replaced even a half-dozen throats in all those years(replaced a few Masters and 'many' Standards). I never had to replace one in my personal rackets(quite a few over the late '70s...I'd switch and a few weeks later, I'd switch right back ;) ). I even switched Chris Mayotte(#! for USC...the original...South Carolina) and don't recall ever dealing with a broken throat piece for him.

    I've got a couple of box-frame Fischer rackets from the '70s...never strung. I was hitting with the #1 player in South Carolina one day and he said "I've never seen you hit this well" when I was using one of the Fischer Match Makers. It felt so soft, I thought I could just hold the ball and place it anywhere I wanted! That only lasted about 20 minutes until the frame bent like a spoon! So much for flexy aluminum frames. :)

    For me, #1 is the Head Pro, followed very closely by the Yonex Goldie or Greenie, followed by the Edge or Vector. I'd mention the Rawlings Newk Tie Breaker; but I couldn't get one to last more than a week. Yes, I hit pretty hard back in those days ;).
     
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  7. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    Green Yoneyama (Yonex) 8500. I hit some really big serves with it back then. They went years before the welds finally cracked.
     
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  8. rodracquet

    rodracquet Rookie

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    A few contenders for this link.
    NLBWELL I also loved my first green 8500 they really looked different and matched the yellow green clothing of the time. Bad for elbows.

    Highest quality aluminium..... JOHN MOTT UK search Classic Racquets for a string on this.

    WEED super oversize...135 sq in the first of there kind around as PRINCE through Howard Head had patented the oversize 125 sq in size. (this was the patent so Weed was able to patent larger)

    ACRO Adjustable (also the SEAMCO by ACRO) really nice technology to adjust stringing tension.

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. Autodidactic player

    Autodidactic player Semi-Pro

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    Believe it or not, the aluminum Dunlop Mad Raq plays pretty well.

    [​IMG]
     
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  10. purple-n-gold

    purple-n-gold Professional

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    Prince Pro 110, Pro Kennex Mid that looked like the Prince Pro,,,but the T2000 was my favorite metal racket of all time due to learning how to play in '78-79.
     
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  11. RiggensAuroraHO

    RiggensAuroraHO Rookie

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    Yes!

    I knew both designers of the Blue and Red. Unfortunately, the Blue's designer died summer of 2011 and the Red's left us too. They were both from and ID consulting firm in Princeton.

    Just hit with the Green 8500 a few weeks ago. Used it during my soph/jr year in college. Can hang with today's frames. Awesome!
     
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  12. max

    max Hall of Fame

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    I"m with Coach Rick: the old red Head Pro. That just, for its day, was a nice performing racquet. I used a couple for most of my HS career, although also a woodie Bancroft.

    About ten years ago I ran into a cheap Wilson aluminum frame at my parents house, took it to the courts with me: boy, it was the loosest, flexiest whip of a thing imaginable. Pretty amazing.
     
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  13. magnut

    magnut Hall of Fame

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    LOL. I think I figured out how to finally get rid of the aluminum twang feel. Pretty simple and suprised it took me this long as I have been tricking out frames for 15 years...everything to foam filling, de-weighting, reducing grips etc.

    So the trick I found is kind of DUH!. Worm dameners on the sides of the stringbed. I never liked worm style dampeners and always just prefered a simple grommet O like what Pete actually used (not the unique version but the Lowes version). The worm dampeners actually have a purpose though. IFor some reason it never occured to me to use the sides of the stringbed. The worms make great dameners for tuning fork feeling alluminum frames. My Alluminum Spalding Impacts were feeling kind of graphitish today.

    Not the perfect soft muted feeling of some of the classic vintage graphites but not that far off. I think I need to mess with the weighting again though.

    I really need to find a way to get inside the frames and get some calk in the handles. That should get the vibation down to zero. I did this to some of the old wilson Matchpoints as the pallets were hollow (ala T1000s) and you could take them apart. I just filled them with calk and put them together.....poof....vibration gone! It was an experiment though. Wilson matchpoints were not real great frames to begin with.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2013
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  14. t135

    t135 Semi-Pro

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    Wish I'd hung on to my PRINCE CLASSIC.
     
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  15. PhxRacket

    PhxRacket Rookie

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    I played with a Wilson T1000, "Red" Head and several Prince Pro 110s carried me through college tennis "back in the day."
     
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  16. Hannah19

    Hannah19 Professional

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    Basically the X-20 frame with Mad Raq stringing pattern. The X-20 was not a bad frame.
     
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  17. Hannah19

    Hannah19 Professional

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    I've played with a few alloys back in the days. My first one was a Snauwaert, the one that TW sold recently from the Bosworth collection. I was visiting my relatives oversea in California in 1981 and picked it up in one of Irvine's racket stores.
    My second metal was a Volkl Drive (Alu with wood core and PUR handle) and the last one was a Wilson Defender.
     
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  18. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    I think you could put the Kennex Power Ace right next to it. Holy cow! We sold a lot of those frames.
     
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  19. MAX PLY

    MAX PLY Hall of Fame

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    I played with the Head Master (round and blue throat piece) and then the Head Pro (the Red Head) for about 3 years through 2 years of high school and then 1 year of college tennis. Head had pretty good deals for ranked players in those days. But went back to trusty wood racquets for a couple of years after that. I actually thought that the Head sticks were nice but preferred the feel of wood. I still have a Head Master that has never been strung--I may need to try it out again. My brother liked the steel feel of the T-2000 (I hit with one of his old frames that I kept recently--not bad at all). Back in the day lots of Heads, a great many YYs (green and gold), tons of T-2s and 3s and occasional Seamco Rosewalls Rawlings Tie Breakers. Good memories.
     
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  20. dirtballer

    dirtballer Professional

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    Anyone remember the aluminum Spalding Smasher from the late 60s? That was one of, if not the, first aluminum rackets.
     
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  21. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    You betcha! I had one of the early ones with the 'keystone' shaped throat bridge($36.00 out of my $40 paycheck!)...broke it rather quickly and took it back to K-Mart !!! to see what they would do. The fellow handed me the new and improved model with the 'S' reinforcement in the throat :) . I was a happy guy except for destroying the grip and strings in about a week. I proudly used that alu while surrounded by a sea of chromed steel ! I thought I was SOMEbody! I even bought Spalding Professional balls when I could afford them WHITE with colored seams for the 'PRO' look !!!

    Also, the first Smasher had the plastic handle that creaked like crazy. The updated replacement had the foam handle. I still have one or two in my collection.
     
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  22. joe sch

    joe sch Hall of Fame

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    I remember Pancho Gonzales playing the Spalding Smasher for awhile. I also remember the Head Master as the racket that Bobby Riggs used.

    Those were two of the famous models.
    Anybody remember the ProAm from Professional Aviation Industries I think out of Costa Mesa CA ? It was a solid aluminum thin profile racket that looked like a cheese slicer.
     
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  23. Cesare

    Cesare Semi-Pro

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    Prince magnesium 90 by far
     
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  24. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    PDP Open. More stable than the Red Head (which I played with for a while also), and had a bigger sweet spot. I played guys I was even with before, and beat them 2 and 2 or better when I started using the PDP. Of course, my game revolved around my serve, and that racket was meant for serve and volley players.
     
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  25. Don't Let It Bounce

    Don't Let It Bounce Hall of Fame

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    I played against a guy in high school who used the PDP Open and had a nasty lefty serve. Maybe Tanner's secret was the stick.

    It's cheating to cite the Mag Pro, Cesare, unless there was at least 50% aluminum in that alloy. (Was there?)

    I miss the Yonex Greenie for fun hitting and for looking like it was left behind by a flying saucer. But for the fun of not losing, or not losing badly, it's gotta be the Prince Pro.
     
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