Live by the Blade...Die by the Blade...

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by danbrenner, Feb 13, 2014.

  1. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    I just got my Blade restrung with Babolat Revenge 17g at 50 lbs. I think it will hit very nicely. I'm very happy with this frame!
     
  2. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    I just want to update my use if rpm blast. It does not feel as good as Lux 4g. Yes it has more raw spin, but it lacks everything else. I have to be honest with you guys and report that.
     
  3. ushynoti

    ushynoti Rookie

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    I was referring to you having the string job in the Blade vs. Head racquet, maybe that's why the Scorpion felt different from the Silverstring?
     
  4. ushynoti

    ushynoti Rookie

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    When I demoed the Blade it had Prince Wrapsure in it, which is a string that may not even be in production anymore, although I do have about a handful of sets of it. It felt good, and it's harsher with the Scorpion...I used a Wilson BLX Prostaff 90 and strung it with full bed of poly at 48, and now it's probably at like 44 lbs and it felt a lot cushier and less harsh in that racquet compared to the Blade. Just want to achieve the same effect. Has anyone else tried a full bed of synthetic gut or something in the Blade? Maybe full bed of Live Wire or NRG2?
     
  5. bad_call

    bad_call Legend

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    yes...have Gosen OGSM 17 mains & Forten Sweet 17 crosses in the 18x20 Blade but it can't compete with Prince Hybrid Warrior Power. suggest giving the Hybrid Warrior Power a try if you can.
     
  6. RSPioli

    RSPioli New User

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    Ok. I tried Scorpion in other frame too (Yonex RDiS 200) and I think Scorpion is a little stiff than the average polys. The strength of it is that its response is very... very... very predictable.
    I like full bed of polys that are more elastic. It´s a mix of snap back and high elasticity of the string. Polystar Energy 1.20 is a perfect example, only regrets that loses tension very fast.
     
  7. kingcheetah

    kingcheetah Professional

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    I've never been too much of an RPM blast fan either... back when I used the Pro staff 90, I had mine strung with 4g. My friend let me try out his pro staff 90 with RPM blast mains and some prince synthetic as crosses... his was awful compared to mine.
     
  8. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    Stick with the Lux. I am gonna cut out the blast. After 2 uses. Lol. The feel is like that of pure plastic. Whereas the luck feels like a mix of things. I think Lix is the worlds best string maker. Case closed !!!!! How is your 4g at 58 holding up. Does it not feel too boardy or has it stiffened or loosened up since you put it in?
     
  9. Jcarlisle2

    Jcarlisle2 Rookie

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    2015?

    anyone know when the new blades are arriving? 2015?
     
  10. Bartelby

    Bartelby G.O.A.T.

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    The last one was reviewed in November 2012 so the new one could be here before Christmas 2014.
     
  11. kingcheetah

    kingcheetah Professional

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    I definitely feel like it plays "tighter" so I can get away with attacking the ball more... my backhand return has been as good as ever with it, so I'm overall pretty happy with this tension.
     
  12. RSPioli

    RSPioli New User

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    I put a set of Polystar Energy 1.20 @48 mains and Mantis Confort Synthetic 1.30 @48 crosses on my Blade 16x19. This is the biggest rocket launcher that I've ever seen. I had to swap racquet with 3 games played, otherwise I would lose 6-0.
    I think this setup need to be strung at 52 mains and 54 crosses.
     
  13. ruud5

    ruud5 Rookie

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    Wich multi do you advice for the 104? And tension (armfriendly)?
     
  14. rrito

    rrito Rookie

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    Has anyone switched from kblade98 to the current blade98 18x20? any noticeable increase in power?
     
  15. WhyNotLetItFly

    WhyNotLetItFly New User

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    Picked up one of the used BLX Blade Tour frames from TW on a whim because of the closeout price. What a racquet! I've always liked the blade series on everything but my 1HBH but the Tour takes care of that. I'm surprised that this racquet got so much negative and indifferent feedback. It's quite excellent
     
  16. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    I'm glad you pointed that out. The whole Blade line is completely underrated IMHO. One if the few sticks that can handle heavy incoming balls, on the defensive, and not have to add all kinds of lead. Service returns are excellent with these sticks, and they weigh only how much. 11.2 oz. lol. U just can't get much better than that folks. And for serving. I have two words for you. Milos Raonic. Nuff said.
     
  17. Tmano

    Tmano Professional

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    you guys are getting me intrigued with the new blade 16/19 but I'm using a MPMP and I believe they are very different racquets
     
  18. kingcheetah

    kingcheetah Professional

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    Well I haven't tried any multi strings in this frame yet, but I think you could probably get by with a large variety due to the tighter string pattern of the blade (strings will last longer) and the fact that this is a flexible racquet, so it will be less stressful on your arm. That said I think that for a multi the ideal tension for being arm friendly but still controllable would be around 55-57. I'd first try something like NXT and see how it fares, and adjust tension or change strings as needed... you don't want anything too powerful because of how much natural pop comes from this racquet.
     
  19. mrc

    mrc Rookie

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    I have hit the Blade 98 18x20. My favorite set up was Cyber Blue mains and Wilson NXT Control Crosses. I struggled with this frame. Felt stiff, but will a small sweet spot. Like a small Prestige like sweetspot with none of the feel. It's a very popular frame, so I must be the problem but it wasnt for me.
     
  20. estigma2001

    estigma2001 Professional

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    My Blades
    [​IMG]
    Solinco Tour Bite 17(48lbs) and Isospeed Baseline 16L(46lbs)
    [​IMG]
     
  21. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    I have cut the RPM blast out of my racquet after 2 outings. Rpm is powerful and feels like plastic. I replaced it with my trusty 4g 125, and it feels lower powered and not plasticky at all. I strung at 50. I like to use low tensions with 4g. Carve on brothers.
     
  22. robok9

    robok9 Semi-Pro

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    I switched from the kblade to the Blx Blade (2011). It was a little bit more power, but I ended up liking the feel of the kblade with some lead tape in it, so I switched back.
     
  23. bertrevert

    bertrevert Hall of Fame

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    Upped the power quotient and got more spin out of the 18 mains of the 98S by putting in RipSpin 15 gauge - changed this light thin beamed racquet a fair bit...

    Got explosive power, better depth control. sharper serve, by using this co-poly. Better defence, heavier offence. Plenty of low and accurate stuff - cut out some weird launch angles that I got from multi.

    Blades are fairly string-sensitive....
     
  24. datsveryinterestin

    datsveryinterestin Rookie

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    well, i have too many Blade 18x20s on the way.
    honestly, this wasn't my first choice of racquet.
    when i picked up the gold/black blades years ago i hated
    the way they felt. the swingweight was def 330 and
    the balance was def 2pts or maybe 0pt HL!
    yuck!
    i picked up the current ones and it was pretty much the same
    although i can see how the SW allows for a powerful stick in lighter weight.
    the beam width is nice too.
    i still looked for a stock 11.7oz racquet that was more head light but couldn't find one that had the right combination of feel & power.
    but with my last graphene prestige MP demo which was
    90% awful, i decided to give it another go.
    i was going to get some super cheap microgel radicals with cap gromets or dunlop 300 tours and lead them up and add leather but decided the Blade would need a lot less tweaking to get it where i want it to be.
    i figure with a leather grip it should be very close to my
    ideal specs and won't need any lead in the hoop.
    i am trying to get them to 11.9oz, 6pts HL, 330sw
    if the TWU tools work... this should be the perfect stick!
    i am praying it works cuz its too late to turn back now!
    i also got several wilson bags: fed ltd edition 9pk and club super sling
    as well as head hawk 18g string and some wilson enduro 16l and yonex 850pro too to experiment with.
    got my wilson pro grip and sampras damps too.
    of course, i will be a GOOD poster and take photos of my Blades when I get them strung up.
    cmon people. dont be shy. whip out your Blades and snap a pic!
     
  25. Tmano

    Tmano Professional

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    I demo the 98 blx black and gold last nnight because it was th only one availabe and I was very impressed with it. Very good controlled power, solid, explosive, stable, offertless in generating heavy balls. Now I wonder how it would have been if I had tried the BLX tour oneor the new blade tour.

    The only down side was the slice that takes a bit more technique that using the MPMP.
     
  26. wilsonmakesmeSTEAM

    wilsonmakesmeSTEAM New User

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    Yes!

    Very good stick! One of the best line of sticks you could buy. Has that classic feel with a modern aura to it. Love the Blade series by Wilson. It beats most Babolats today.
     
  27. datsveryinterestin

    datsveryinterestin Rookie

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    I just strung my 18x20 with hawk18 and enduro pro16l crossses at 53/52
    Taking it out for 1st hit soon!
     
  28. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    Sounds interesting. Let us know how it fares.
     
  29. datsveryinterestin

    datsveryinterestin Rookie

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    1st match with Blade 98 18x20
    - wilson leather grip and 2 overgrips
    12oz, 330sw?, and 6pts HL
    - racquet strung head hawk 18g/enduro pro 16l @53/52lbs

    in warmups it didn't take long for me to know that this racquet
    is pretty nice!
    i had excellent control and
    it felt so solid and natural hitting volleys.. so nice compared to my
    previous Babolat APD!
    it also has a nice classic feeling FLEX that i wasn't expecting.
    honestly if somebody told me i was holding a pro stock racquet i would have
    believed them.
    i might have strung it a little too high but when i took a big (ok huge) swing i was rewarded with nice power.
    it wasn't boardy and dead like the graphene prestige demo felt when it strung it up at same tension, but
    if i took anything off my shots they would land pretty short. so it kind of reinforced for me to play super aggressive.
    practice serves were amazing too! tremendous pace and i was getting more kick than i expected. placement is so precise.
    i started the match on fire with huge serves and big forehands and my best drop shot ever that died with backspin inches from the net which with other racquets would have been 10ft worse. i felt so connected to this racquet!
    then the wheels fell off after leading heavily.
    i don't know if was just my strings changing or if it was just user error (ok it was probably just me losing focus) but i almost lost the match. i was able to eek out a win but i didn't have the confidence after the 1st 5 games.
    overall for a first hit i was very impressed with the racquet.
    however i think i need to really experiment with strings and tension.
    i'd like to have easier power and more pocketing of the ball.
    next up will be full Head Hawk 18g
    and if that doesn't work i'lll need to try a multi or gut main?
    im going to check out tour bite 19g too.
    i need a little more spin & net clearance and more depth off of a medium paced full swing.

    i'd be VERY interested to hear about other 18x20 users string setups because i really feel that dialing that in is all i need to make this my permanent stick. i've been changing racquets every 6months so i am really
    excited to have a prospect of a long term commitment!

    its not a miracle racquet. just a really nice blend of classic players stick with modern game power. very impressed and its just what i wanted!
    hope my 2 other Blades come in the mail soon! :)

    En Garde!
     
  30. coolschreiber

    coolschreiber Semi-Pro

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    Nice review! Just wondering...Would a leather grip and two over grips push the weight up 12 ounce? Did you actually measure it?
    I'm also assuming the it goes up a grip size too.
     
  31. datsveryinterestin

    datsveryinterestin Rookie

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    yes I measured.
    Blade 1: unstrung: 306g w/ leather and poly: 341g
    strung w hawk18/enduro16l: 325gr
    leather grip: 8gr (was hoping for 10g...but no)
    2 overgrips: 6 gr
    dampener: 2 gr
    Blade 2: unstrung: 308g w/ leather & strung with poly: 340g
    Blade 3: unstrung: 300g w/ leather & strung with multi/poly hybrid: 330g!
    Darn Wilson quality control!
    Blade 3 is noticeably more HL so I guess some lead tape in the hoop might make it more like the other 2. I would recommend TW matching service when buying these!

    I was worried that with leather I would feel more vibration but as soon as I put it on... it gave the racquet a more solid feel and is so muted I might not need a dampener.

    One annoying thing for me is how the strings at the bottom tie offs stick out of the frame.
    Does everybody have this? Ill post a pic of it later. Just looks a little goofy.

    I need a good training session to decide on a string setup and then crush all foes!
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2014
  32. ruud5

    ruud5 Rookie

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    Thanks,
    I shall try that:)
     
  33. estigma2001

    estigma2001 Professional

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    Well it appears that i found the right tension for my blade (48/45 Solinco TB 16 and Iso speed 16L) enough power and control for my shots however i am still adapting to the SW lowering my center of gravity and speeding up my wrist swing. But i think in 4 o 6 weeks everything will be ok my partner feels that my serve and my ground strokes are heavier!. One more thing the feel and touch are awesome.
     
  34. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    I think it's great that you have found string you love. The sw you will totally adapt to, and the good news is that when you do, your shots will have much better placement. I also agree with your observation regarding center of gravity. You really need to bend your knees on the forehand, and come up and through the ball. But make no mistake, the Blade is one of the best racquets ever made. Enjoy it. And please update when you have breakthroughs with it. Carve on brotha.
     
  35. DANMAN

    DANMAN Professional

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    Still loving the blade 98S. I have been playing with it since prior to its release. I'm down to 50 lbs with a full bed of play. This thing eats strings. Broke ALU in 3 hours. Broke 15G Kline legend crosse with isospeed baseline in an hour and a half but that setup was amazing. Gut is unaffordable in this frame for me unfortunately. I've gotten good bang for the buck out of the isospeed baseline 15 because I break it before bad characteristics come out. This blade is a serving monster.
     
  36. Tmano

    Tmano Professional

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    sorry if I move a little away the conversation but,
    is the K Blade 93 better than the BLX Blade? what's so different?
     
  37. Jakesteroni

    Jakesteroni Rookie

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    Gotta join the club. Finally stumbled upon a string that really goes well for me with this racket. Kirschbaum pro line II 16g Black at 56lbs . This is in the 18x20. Great pocketing feel, plenty of spin and just the right amount of power. Tried cyclone 17g, tour bite 16L, polylon comfort and pro line just is too good, not that the others are bad but the pro line just feels as if it makes the entire string bed a sweet spot. It's one of those things that makes you enjoy playing so much more.
     
  38. datsveryinterestin

    datsveryinterestin Rookie

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    I thought I liked full poly best but I think I might like the one strung with MaximTouch17/EnduroPro16L the best now.
    bigger sweetspot, might even have more spin & control, awesome feel and pocketing.
    haven't played any matches with it yet, but it was easily the best today at practice.
     
  39. Lukhas

    Lukhas Legend

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  40. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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  41. SharkysMV1

    SharkysMV1 New User

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    Good call. I'm currently playing with NRG2 17 in my Blade 98 (18X20) at 57lbs. I'm tempted to try my old standby (Babolat XCel Power 17) but will prob have to string it a little tighter to handle the extra pop. Really loving the Blade w/multi setup.
     
  42. bad_call

    bad_call Legend

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    have hit with both and 4G darker in color than BBO.
     
  43. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    Cool. So what. Is your take on both strings. ??
     
  44. datsveryinterestin

    datsveryinterestin Rookie

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    in my experience, BBO is softer and more powerful for me. It is actually my favorite string if I could afford to restring every 4 hours because serves really explode for both pace and kick when it is fresh. but 4G holds tension much better and plays deader but with more control.
     
  45. bad_call

    bad_call Legend

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    ^ in agreement here. BBO great but goes "dead" within a few hours...need Lux sponsorship.
     
  46. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    Cool. So what kind of tensions do you guys like for a full bed of Lux? And have you guys used gut mains and lux crosses? Please compare if you have
     
  47. kingcheetah

    kingcheetah Professional

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    Depends on the racquet. For the Blade 93, my friend took my setup of 4g 125 at 54 lbs and loves it... I started there with my customized 104 and have since moved up to 58, and I may go higher still (no arm issues, and I'm getting criticized for being too spinny with my groundstrokes, so I'm trying to be a slightly flatter hitter... for a 98, i'd say anywhere between 53 and 58 should be good.
     
  48. danbrenner

    danbrenner Professional

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    Hey KC. Cool. Yeah I strung mine up at 50 about 3 weeks ago. It's probably in the mid to low 40s now, but still very playable. It's so low powered that low tensions don't really have any negative impact. Although I know that you have enjoyed bump ups in tension.
     
  49. scambi

    scambi New User

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    Wilson blade 98 blx 16*19 : strung with Wilson Championship at 45 lbs cross natural gut /42 lbs main alu power rough.
    FANTASTIC RACQUET enormous power it hits like a trampoline bomb,
    great ace machine and winners bomb groundstrokes!!!
    i've three and i'm not gonna change until next when we'll see the NEW BLADE 2015.
     
  50. kingcheetah

    kingcheetah Professional

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    The 104 is also a lot more flexible than some other blades, and has a larger headsize, so it is able to handle higher tensions without getting uncomfortable.
     

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