Part 2: Playing with lead on my PD

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by matchpoints, Jan 12, 2005.

  1. matchpoints

    matchpoints Professional

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    Since I've had my PD's, I've been playing around with lead more and more. I was too used to the 6.1's weight to feel comfortable using the PD stock. I wanted to make myself feel home again. Let me tell ya, customizing a racquet can be a hassle if you don't know exactly what you need/want. This was my case. I usually hit for at least 2 sessions before I decide to change the location or weight. I've noticed that every location and amount of weight has made very noticeable differences. When I had 4 grams total at 3 and 9 with stock cushion grip, it felt more solid but it felt awful when not hitting the sweetspot especially on the upper hoop area. It was more stable then stock though. Then I added a leather grip to get more feel and better bevels (like my 6.1's). This introduced even more shock. I added 4 extra grams at the throat and things started feeling better. For some reason, i didn't have much control on the forward part of my forehand swing. It was around 5 points head light at this point and weighing I believe 12.3 ounces.

    I took the tape off the head and left the one at the throat. This felt great when hit dead on center but had terrible off center stability. It was pocketing the ball less also.

    So in disgust, I ripped all the tape off and added 4 grams to the 12oclock area last night. I never would have done this because I wanted to maintain head light, but after reading about how Roddick and Moya have, I figured I'd give it a try myself.

    After balancing it, I realized It was still quite headlight due to the extra 12grams that the leather grip added. My current total weight is 12.2 ounces. This is the best setup I've tried so far. It's not too heavy but the swingweight is there.

    I like having some swingweight because it let's me know where abouts the racquet is on the forward swing. It also helps drive through the ball. I'm thinking about maybe adding 2 more grams each side at 3 and 9 o'clock, or maybe making the 12 oclock strips a couple inches longer. Actually I'm going to do both and see which I prefer. The reason I might add more weight is to dampen the Poly's a bit more. I'm already using a dampener and maybe I could use something that dampens more. My friends' stick feels so much more dampened then mine. He's using the stretch version. He has a lot more weight added though. At the same time, he's not using a leather grip. I'm also going to switch to Pro Hurricanes like he has instead of my current Polymonos. Another thing is that he strings his a few lbs less then me.

    I almost added lead fishing weights in the handle (12 grams total) but then realized It might make it really head light and increase the racquet weight to 12.6 ounces. Heck, I think I'll do that too just to find out how I like it.
     
    #1
  2. bfonz7

    bfonz7 Rookie

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    Feb 18, 2004
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    I'm looking to customize the Plus version myself.

    I play mostly from the baseline, so headlightness isnt my main concern.

    I would like add some weight at 3 and 9, and maybe at 12 also.

    U seem to know the balance equation....if i put 1 gram at 12, and 1 each at 3 and 9....what would be my setup then in terms of balance?

    Stock for the Plus is
    Strung Weight: 11.1oz / 315g
    Balance: 6pts Head Light
    Swingweight: 332
     
    #2
  3. iloveradical

    iloveradical New User

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2004
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    If you're using Team +, lead taping on 5 and 7 o'clock will be a better choice. What Team + is lacking are stability and control. Lead tapes on 12 o'clock will aggravate it.
     
    #3
  4. AndrewD

    AndrewD Legend

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    Dec 11, 2004
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    Matchpoints, Do you think the PD (standard) is one racquet that really needs customisation, if you're at a decent 4.0ish level? I can't recall reading many posts where guys have mentioned happily using it at stock weight and specs. Gives me the impression that its a frame with potential but Babolat have missed the boat a little in terms of weighting it. What do you think?
     
    #4
  5. K!ck5w3rvE

    K!ck5w3rvE Hall of Fame

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    Try silicone in the handle.
     
    #5
  6. Zverev

    Zverev Professional

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    my experience is that lead at 3 and 9 ALWAYS improves stability,
    for any kind of racquet.
    In theory it should (less prone to twisting) and practice supports it.
    So I add as much as I can (usually it's 4-12 gramms),
    the only thing to watch is swingweight.
    I find SW>40 is not confortable for me, so I keep below that.
    The formula I use is
    - 1 gramm at 3-9 adds 2 gramms of swingweight
    - 1 gramm at 6 adds 0.5 gramms of swingweight
    - 10 gramms in the handle adds 1 gramm of swingweight.
    It works for any racquet.
     
    #6
  7. Roforot

    Roforot Professional

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    Feb 21, 2004
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    Is this bait & switch? :)
    I thought you were going to inspire us w/ a story of using an 11oz 100-110 sqin monster to decimate your friends using their older sticks? And here you are using a 12.6oz stick!! At any rate, I'm happy that you're having success and did enjoy reading your story!

    I also like players' racquets and will post later about my long search for the tour 90! How the racquet vanished from TW one day, and how on these very same boards I was led to what was once lost :)
     
    #7
  8. Brent Pederson

    Brent Pederson Semi-Pro

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    Feb 18, 2004
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    I concur with adding some silicon in the handle. Even just a couple big drops (about the size of a quarter) of it on the inside of the but cap will help soften the vibrations and make the frame feel a lot better. That's what I found with this frame, anyway.
     
    #8
  9. kreative

    kreative Professional

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    i think the PD plays good stock, but plays great w/ some extra lead added. depending on what the player wants thou, i know several who play w/ a stock pd fine.

    i found adding lead at 12, even a little bit increased the swingweight too much for me w/o giving stability. i was hitting late, and my shoulder was sore. i prefer lead at 3/9.
     
    #9
  10. matchpoints

    matchpoints Professional

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    I see a lot of guests playing with stock weight. They range from 3.0-4.5 level. All except one that i can remember used some sort of non poly strings. If you're going to use poly's, I would use silicone in the butt or add some lead. I only use poly's so I have quite some weight on mine but besides that I like weight because it makes me use proper strokes.

    That reminds me. The last pro-am i went to, there was this doubles team where one of the players (tall huge monster) would use the stock PD when serving and the leaded one for returns. he was a former top d3 college player. anyhow, i think it's one of those "to each his own" thing.
     
    #10

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