Head factory in Austria - Racquets made by hand says Ernests Gulbis

Discussion in 'Pros' Racquets and Gear' started by dincuss, Mar 26, 2010.

  1. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2006
    Messages:
    7,884
    Location:
    Next door to Elisha Cuthbert.
    I have had the opposite experience. I have had 4 different Head racquets in pairs the last few years and not one single pair felt the same. On the other hand, I have played with at least 6 Radical Twin Tubes and every one of them felt exactly the same as the other.

    2 Microgel Prestige MP...matched in specs but felt different in feel.
    2 Microgel Prestige Pro MP..."matched in specs but felt different in feel."
    2 Microgel Prestige mid..."matched in specs but felt different in feel."
    2 Youtek Prestige MP..."matched in specs but felt different in feel."

    That is not a coincidence. I just can't believe I have never had 4 sets of matched Head racquets (newer models) feel the same.
     
    #51
  2. DavaiMarat

    DavaiMarat Professional

    Joined:
    May 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,181
    I don't. We'd be sooooooooooo screwed if they got German/Japanese quality but Chinese production power.

    I'm not talking about tennis racquets. I believe the western/european retail infrastructure would collapse. Buy chinese, 1/2 price same quality. Bad Bad and bad.
     
    #52
  3. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2006
    Messages:
    7,884
    Location:
    Next door to Elisha Cuthbert.
    do you mean one racquet? I have owned over 10 Radical Twin Tubes since 1995 and every single one of them felt the same and had the same feel in balance/SW. Trust me, I have a curse (some may not view it this way) that I can feel the slightest difference in a racquet. For example:

    A few years back I ordered a matched set of Wilson K90's from TW. They came and just as I tok them out of the box, I immedietly knew these were not matched. I felt a difference. I called them and I had to ship them back. They admitted no one had matched these. If memory serves me, the difference was like a few grams and 1 pt balance..not much at all. But I notice the slightest difference in a racquet, not as much on strings for whatever reason. But the newer frames tolerances are much, much worse than what was made in Austria. Below are the specs (found the email), so again pretty close but no cigar. I felt a major difference. I am cursed!

    Racquet with the star:
    Static Weight: 12.6 ounces
    Balance: 8 points head light
    Swing Weight: 337

    Racquet w/o the star:
    Static Weight: 12.8 ounces
    Balance: 9 points head light
    Swing Weight: 338
     
    #53
  4. Sampras Fan

    Sampras Fan Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2010
    Messages:
    46
    If they are matched in specs, strings, balance and feel different then its all in your head that you can feel the difference. Give me a break.

    Do you get your racquets strung by P1 and give them hell because they just dont feel right?
     
    #54
  5. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2006
    Messages:
    7,884
    Location:
    Next door to Elisha Cuthbert.
    as I stated, I am cursed. Yes I truly feel the differences. I have 2 Wilson K88's I just got a month back and one I bought when they first came out. The matched pair feel exactly alike and the older one is a few grams lighter, but same SW and balance. But all three feel exactly the same..no issue. One of the reasons why I like playing these racquets. You have no idea how difficult it has been the past few years finding 2 or more racquets that feel the same in swing and contact. I never had this issue with my Max 200g's, Ultra 2's, Radical TT's and PS85 St. Vincents. I took a break from tennis (played a lot of golf) in 2000 and slowly got back into it in 2004 and full-time in 2007. Since 2004 I can't count how many racquets I have played. It has to be in the 60-70 range. But yes, I can feel the smallest difference. In fact, I still have the emails to prove it. I had no idea what the specs were because TW did not do the matching. When they got the racquets back, they sent me the specs of the two racquets (as I listed) and I chose the lighter one.

    Lastly, feel is a bit different than matching a racquet by specs. Its actually a seperate issue. just because two racquets are matched in specs does not mean they will feel the same (especially today's racquets). this has been noted by many other posters so its not that odd. the thing that is the "curse" for me is I can feel the weight difference to the smallest amount of grams..that is the issue for me more so than feel. You would think more racquets feel the same but have different specs...not true for me anyway.
     
    #55
  6. Sampras Fan

    Sampras Fan Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2010
    Messages:
    46
    Good enough. Do you have a balance board? I know sometimes I can add weight to different parts of the racquet to match up a pair and even though the specs and the balance match, the weight being distributed unevenly I think is the reason for the difference in feel.
     
    #56
  7. 0d1n

    0d1n Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2006
    Messages:
    3,668
    Location:
    Cluj-Napoca, Romania
    I'm sorry, but that is just plain false. I can feel the difference between 2 of my frames which are 4 grams apart blindfolded. They have similar swing weight/balance though ... and as a result I can't be bothered to match them further in mass ... because the results aren't really different and I can switch between them in the middle of a set...so I don't care.
    Can't feel 10 grams apart...get outta here.
    I'm with you with the general idea that most people would be best served working on their game rather than putting half a gram in their "buttcap" for a more headlight balance which should give them more swing speed, which should give them more spin, which should "make their balls heavier" ;), which should elevate their NTRP rating from 3.5 to 5.0...but I don't buy the idea that one can't feel a 10 grams difference between otherwise similar racquets.
     
    #57
  8. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2006
    Messages:
    7,884
    Location:
    Next door to Elisha Cuthbert.
    I don't have one, but I should have gotten one years ago. I have used the ruler method and it seemed to work fine. It could be the weight, but I don't have that issue with my current sticks...I am planning on playing these for a long time. we'll see I guess.:)
     
    #58
  9. RacquetCraft

    RacquetCraft Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2009
    Messages:
    154
    In the good old days,frames were designed and production overseen by craftsmen of long standing and of unquestionable expertise. Many of the workers who actually built the "old frames" you guys chat about on these boards worked for many years at the same job at the same factory. The remaining staff still producing prototypes and certain pro stock at Head's Kennelbach factory are such craftsmen or where trained by craftsmen of longstanding experience.

    Most other frames are produced at OEM's in China and Taiwan. Take YMA for example-this OEM produce both Dunlop's and Technifibre's frame runs. Is the racquet playability and/or the quality control of the racquets they produce any different? In my opinion, although the frames that the OEM's produce are very good racquets, these racquets are not as good as the frames once made by craftsmen?

    cheers,

    racquetcraft
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2010
    #59
  10. BLACKOUT

    BLACKOUT Rookie

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2009
    Messages:
    246
    Great video, and Adidasman, a little customization does go a long way. You just want the racquets to play as well as possible.
     
    #60
  11. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    12,544
    Location:
    at the bottom of every hill I come to
    Great post and I agree 100%. If folks spent as much time playing tennis as they do thinking about tennis, they'd be playing much better.
     
    #61
  12. DrewRafter8

    DrewRafter8 Professional

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Messages:
    831
    This is what drives me crazy. I've been playing with extended frames for a while now. Best stick I ever hit with was a TGK that was 695mm. I've been trying to find more, but availability is very limited. I've got my hands on a 28" radical tour zebra that I'm going to try and make work. These Austrian sticks seem to have a really plush feeling. Very unique.

    If I can't find the TGK's, the old Babolat APDC+ (can you say opposite of plush?) will just have to continue to work....
     
    #62
  13. bobijam

    bobijam New User

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2005
    Messages:
    33
    Location:
    Beijing, China
    High quality control means you dump racquests do not fit the high quality level, means you'd hire more experienced workers, means higher salary, higher cost.

    So it's not where the racquet come from decides its quality, it's how much the company would pay and how much they'd profit which determines their product quality.
     
    #63
  14. t-swede

    t-swede Rookie

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Messages:
    301
    if some people here would spend the same time on improving conditioning and athletic ability and stroke mechanics as the do with the whole racket tinkering the most likely would be in the top 500 in the world or at least playing challengers .

    come on folks there isnt any racket thats going to turn you in to a 5.0 player if only have the 4.0 player capacity.
     
    #64

Share This Page