The pro stock to end all pro stocks: The Fed racket

Discussion in 'Pros' Racquets and Gear' started by FEDERERNADAL13, Aug 7, 2012.

  1. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    Prologue:

    As a few of you may know, I had the luck of coming in to possession of a Custom Wilson 93 racket, and I gave a review of it. In this thread, I will include a review of the 93 as well as a new racket.

    [​IMG]

    Anyway, back on topic:

    I managed to get a hold of one gem of a racket, a racket that is simply extraordinary! That’s right, an actual Federer frame, right from the Wilson pro room (not customized by P1 yet). It still has a Wilson leather grip (the best grip I’ve ever seen, far superior to retail BTW). The racket has a custom grip mold, which makes a few shots easier than with a regular grip (more on that to follow). In addition, the head guard is the same as the nicer K factor head guards, much nicer than the retail plastic 2012 ones.

    As you can see in the pics, this racket is a 2012 Fed frame, with the current (and best, IMO) paintjob. The grip seems slightly shorter than usual 90 square inch grip, but the racket is still 27 inches long.

    I strung it with Babolat VS and ALU Rough (51 lbs./48 lbs.), added a Tourna Tac XL over grip, and added Power pads (just for fun).

    Then, the fun began! I hit with it for 6.5 hours, and was impressed (obviously). Here’s a detailed review of Fed’s and the 93:

    Pictures!!!:

    [​IMG]

    This picture illustrates the difference between the Federer grommet and the retail grommet of a PSBLX95

    [​IMG]

    A look at the butt cap of the frame (note: it is a trap door butt cap, used since the racket hasn’t been sent to P1 yet)
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2012
    #1
  2. Prostaffer

    Prostaffer Semi-Pro

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    Oh Man!

    Do Leprechauns or mini swiss guards come out of the trap door once released?

    Really look forward to seeing what you notice. That's awesome.
     
    #2
  3. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    [​IMG]


    Just a pic to let you guys see that it is in fact a 90, not a 93


    [​IMG]

    A view of the custom grip mold. It was hard to get a good picture, but this kind of shows how one side is “jutting out” more than the other.

    Specs:

    Weight: 358 grams (12.6 ounces)
    Balance: 6 pts. HL
    Swing Weight: 332.33 (I took 3 measurements with the TW swing weight calculator, 309, 337, and 351 were the readings)
    Grip size: 4 3/8
    *Note: Swing weight measurement is inexact, as I could only measure to one tenth of a second, not one one-hundredth of a second as the instructions suggest

    Manoeuvrability:

    Fed’s: This racket is a 12.6 oz, 6 pts HL frame, a 90 square inch racket, but is more manoeuvrable than any 90 I’ve ever played with. In fact, it’s more manoeuvrable than my BLXPS 95! This was really nice, as I could whip around my strokes very easily, a luxury that I didn’t enjoy with my Wilson 93 frame.

    The 93: this racket weighs 12.3 oz, 1 pts HL, and feels far heavier in comparison! The balls carry more weight than with Fed’s, but it is difficult to keep up over a long match.


    Groundstrokes:


    Fed’s: In a word: Amazing! The racket is fantastic off the ground. My backhand suffered no ill effects from the manoeuvrability; my slice was noticeably more poisonous; the only thing that suffered was the forehand. I noticed a lack of pace off the FH wing, but increasing racket head speed fixed this quickly. In fact, I was able to hit harder and more efficiently on the FH, since the ball always seemed to go in! So, I found myself going for far more than I am used to, and reaping the rewards.

    The 93: This racket is a beast off the ground. Unbelievable pace, spin, and control. It trumps the Fed frame here, except for one issue: this thing is SO heavy! It’s only 1 point headlight, and 12.3 ounces, but it feels like it weighs 15 ounces after a set and a half. It is great to hit for short bursts, but I can’t get it consistently. Also, I miss a LOT more with this racket; it doesn’t always seem to find the line like the Fed frame.

    Volleys:

    Fed’s: Nothing amazing here. Plenty of spin on drop volleys, good pop on overheads, but it’s obviously not tailor made for volleying.

    The 93: Again, nothing special here. These pro stocks were not meant for serve-and-volleyers!

    Serving:

    Fed’s: Lower pace than my BLXPS 95, but very very precise. I felt like I could place a dime in the service box and hit it. Also, the custom grip changed my serve a bit. It is molded differently then stock, which caused me to grab the racket with a spin-serve grip more than a flat serve grip. The result: Plenty of spin serves, not very many flat ones.

    The 93: A lot of power! Serving with this was the exact opposite of the Fed frame in my opinion. I found it difficult to place the ball well, but got a lot of pace without much effort. This could be due to the head-heavy balance. Once again, hard to keep up good serves over a whole match.

    Returns:

    Fed’s: Due to the manoeuvrability, I found it very easy to return with this stick. I could place it well, and really put my opponent in a tough spot on the return. Very fun to return with this stick.

    The 93: Returns are very powerful with this stick! It takes good timing, but when you hit it well, you know it instantly.

    Spins:

    Fed’s: This racket is great for slicing off the BH wing. It just feels natural! I also found topspin easily accessible on the FH. I could flatten it out when necessary as well. The slice was unbelievable though!

    The 93: Flat shots are the best, but topspin, not so much. Slicing was good, though not as good as the Fed frame. This racket is good for power, but it is not for spinny strokes.

    Touch/Feel:

    Fed’s: Fantastic feel, drop shots seemed easier, lobbing was good. I expected this from a pro stock, and was not disappointed.

    The 93: once again, fantastic feel! Very similar to the Fed frame here, which I am quite happy about.

    Overall:

    Fed’s: I love this frame! I feel like I could play 12 sets with it and not get tired, I never seem to miss, and it’s Fed’s! What’s not to love?

    The 93: If I could use it for a whole match, this frame might be better than the Fed frame overall. The weight just kills it for me, it demands so much!

    Final Thoughts:

    The biggest thing about these pro stock frames is that the reward good play. If I hit the centre of the Fed frame it hits like a dream, but if I miss by a little bit it does not feel good at all. The same can be said for the custom 93. I hope I’ve answered all questions you guys have about the frame, but I will still try my best to answer any others.
     
    #3
  4. smoledman

    smoledman Legend

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    I'd like to see Federer upgrade to a 93 square inch.
     
    #4
  5. stronzzi70

    stronzzi70 Professional

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    Federer has 93 inch for a time ago.
     
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  6. OldFedIsOld

    OldFedIsOld Professional

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    Nope, used 85, then 90. May have played around with 93 or 95, but never changed from 90.
     
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  7. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    QFT........................
     
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  8. smoledman

    smoledman Legend

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    A 93 sq in would lead to fewer mishits, but less feel for his touch shots and slice.
     
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  9. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Um...no, it wouldn't. What would lead to fewer mishits is if Federer stopped standing on the baseline half-volleying everything on the rise and if he stopped swinging with so much racquet head speed. But if he stopped doing those things he would lose a lot more than he wins. An extra 3 sq. in. on his racquet isn't going to stop the mishits. He still needs to hit the center of his stringbed regardless of how big his racquet is.
     
    #9
  10. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    Ok, I'm gonna have to ask the 93 vs 90 guys to stop de-railing the thread (thanks to BP and others who sorted out that 3 inches=nothing though) :)

    Let's stay on topic guys! Any questions about the racket?
     
    #10
  11. red rook

    red rook Rookie

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    I applaude you for actually playing with it. Thanks fo your post and for sharing!
     
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  12. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    No problem! I'm just happy to share my findings with the TTW community.
     
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  13. ENJOY TENNIS

    ENJOY TENNIS Rookie

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    Tell us the difference between the pro room and stock models....... I see that Federer dos not use the pro room, but the modified pro room, by P1, is that right?
     
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  14. ENJOY TENNIS

    ENJOY TENNIS Rookie

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    Could You review the pro room and the stock PS90 and tell us the differences?
     
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  15. フェデラー

    フェデラー Hall of Fame

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    I would do terrible things to get another wilson racket with a 93 inch head. The kblade tour was such a good racket.

    Have you used other wilson frames in the past (blx 6.1 tour, k factor 6.1 tour, et al.)? How would those compare?

    You also mentioned that you lost some power, have you thought about adding any lead tape to the top of the hoop, as P1 would have done for Roger since you said it was yet to be customized?

    You also stated that this was a Federer frame, how close do you think it is to retail? Many here speculate that Roger just hand picks his and then has them customized, do you think that could be the case here? Is there anything that would indicate that it is NOT really a BLX PS?

    And a non-racket related question, how do you feel about power pads? Do they really do anything for your game, or is it merely cosmetic or do you notice a more dampened feel?
     
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  16. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    I've used the K90, BLX90, BLXPS90, BLXPS95, Custom 93, and the Fed racket. The Fed racket seems to me to be a cross between the K90 and the BLXPS90. The BLXPS90 didn't have the feel of the 90 IMO, but the Fed racket has the K90 feel. I just can't put my finger on which one it's more like though!

    I think this racket is VERY similar to a retail 90. Other than the shorter grip (which is a very slight difference), the racket is the same mold for sure. This racket feels like it could just be a stock racket with weight in the handle changing the specs! It feels like it must be made with better materials than retail though (more graphite-ish feel, like a frame from the 80's/90's).

    I have though about adding lead there! Fabfed has clocked his Fed sticks at 364 grams, compared to my 358, so I may try that later!

    In terms of the powerpads, I haven't noticed too much of a difference in feel. They are very similar to a dampener IMO, but with less of an impact, and a slightly different feel IMO. They look cool though, so I'm gonna use them more :)

    Any other questions?
     
    #16
  17. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    Pro room rackets are (generally) stock rackets at perfect specs. Also, it is speculated that pro room rackets have better quality ingredients (I agree with this after trying these two rackets).

    Yes, modified pro room :) P1 is the best, so I can see why Roger would want to use them!
     
    #17
  18. aimr75

    aimr75 Hall of Fame

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    Maybe you should send this one to P1 and ask them to mod it per their number 1 client ;)
     
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  19. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    I asked them about doing a retail racket to that spec, but they said that they don't customize to pro player specs :(
     
    #19
  20. aimr75

    aimr75 Hall of Fame

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    hmm, if they customise for the general public, and you provide the specs you desire, then they should do it. Just dont ask for the Fed spec and use the numbers provided by FabFed :)
     
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  21. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    Maybe! :) I'll consider it for sure!
     
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  22. フェデラー

    フェデラー Hall of Fame

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    That seems kind of silly, I mean if you're willing to pay, who would refuse you?
    And thank you for answering the questions. So I assume it also has that new amplifeel stuff in the handle? i always wondered whether or not roger would have it on his considering its a totally new technology (and i think a few people on here have complained about it).
     
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  23. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    I actually don't know! The leather grip is so nice (far superior to retail), so I haven't even thought about taking it off. Maybe it does, maybe it doesn't :twisted:

    In the coming weeks (maybe even months) when the grip wears down I'll take it off so see if it is or not. I just don't want to lose this grip.

    In terms of P1, I respect what they do with pro players. They respect their player's privacy (or the player's brands) and don't give the specs/customizations away. I say good on em!
     
    #23
  24. gplracer

    gplracer Professional

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    Does this racket have lead tape on it under the bumper guard? I know the ones for Fed do. I would think his racket would be more head heavy and have a higher swing weight....
     
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  25. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    It hasn't been customized by P1, so, no. I am considering adding 6 grams at 12 to make it a P1 setup and retaking weights and such, but this is why the swing weight is off.

    Hope this helps!
     
    #25
  26. Nostradamus

    Nostradamus G.O.A.T.

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    Very confused, how does federer play so well with this ? he mishits more balls than any other pro
     
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  27. Pistol Pete

    Pistol Pete Rookie

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    I'm not sure that what you have is a fed racket. The rackets fed has done by p1 have no handles on them, meaning it's just graphite. I don't think Wilson would have fed rackets with a handle laying around. Maybe I'm wrong. If anything I think they would just have the FED racket with no handle ready to go.

    I'm sure what you have is a pro stock however.
     
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  28. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    One thing important to note, is that players change their specs. So they may play with a certain weight and balance at one tournament, and 6 months later it has changed. Sometimes they change it during a tournament. So it would be kind of fruitless to request the specs of a given player.

    Ona side note, I believe, as someone else pointed out, that P1 receives the frames without the pallet or grip, and then modify it to thier particular client.
     
    #28
  29. aimr75

    aimr75 Hall of Fame

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    Oh yeah, definitely agree with this, though i guess to get a general feel for how his racquet is set up, you could go with one of the listed specs from FabFed. Here are the ones he has:

    2008 Fed K90 - 32.4cm, 364 grams
    2009 Fed K90 - 32.1cm, 364 grams
    2009 Fed K90 - 32.2cm, 364 grams
    2010 Fed BLX90 - 32.2cm, 364 grams

    All same weight and relatively close as far as balance
     
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  30. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    Just a small note on this. I have paid attention to grips for years and EVERY single Wilson I have ever owned has had that - over 30 frames bought from retail stores. It is not a custom mould feature. It's simply how it ends up when the grip is wrapped - especially if the grip is leather.
     
    #30
  31. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    I am suspicious as to whether Federer's frames are via the pro room at all. The pro room is to cater to their general sponsored players who want specific specs etc. Federer is not one of their general players - he is 95% of their marketing talent and would get anything at all that he wants in a frame - including frames made out of anything he desired even if it meant making them for him in the USA (which they possibly do to make sure they're how he wants them).

    About two years ago they cut down their pro room service massively by the way - a player who is coached by someone I know who was in the top 50 lost her custom balance frame supply from Wilson.. she gets stock frames now even though she is well back in the top 50 again. Wilson's cut-off for this service is in the range of top 20 nowdays. Barely more than a courtesy service for a couple of their players who have future potential (Dolgopolov etc).

    Federer, on the other hand, has frames which - in 5 or more years - have not once been confirmed as being related to the retail model other than their mould (nor confirmed as being substantially different either to be fair). Many people who seem to have a keen eye and understanding of frames suspect his are constructed more like the original Prostaff 85 - braided and with more kevlar-type materials used and/or foam filled (the fact he uses no vibration damper yet his frame still sounds like dead-ish seems to be consistent with this imo). I tend to agree with them. His quality control is likely higher than normal - he doesn't want to waste any time at all with setting frames aside because they play differently - something which even P1 cannot control for if it's a construction issue prior to their receiving them to regrip/balance. (unless Ron Yu is able to confirm whether they run some sort of flex/characteristics tests on all the frames they receive prior to sending them to Federer)

    The same coach I mentioned above also claimed to have an *actual* Federer frame about 2 years ago - direct from the Wilson pro room but it took me all of 30 seconds to work out otherwise. It may have been from the pro room but it wasn't a Federer frame.

    Not trying to be a killjoy to the OP but any frame not sourced via Federer (an ex-game match for example) or P1 I would tend to assume was not a Federer frame even if it was a pro room frame based on the retail model which they have made available to other players.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2012
    #31
  32. sixone90

    sixone90 Professional

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    Agreed, I'm very skeptical when people claim they have a Fed frame. I'm not saying the OP's racquet isn't but it's hard to prove otherwise. One could very easily put on a K Factor grommet and bumper guard onto the BLXPS90
     
    #32
  33. Rusty669

    Rusty669 Semi-Pro

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    I somehow cannot believe that you are holding one of Fed's actual frames...
    The last info I had regarding his frames was that Wilson send the rackets straight to P1 without a grip pallett whatsoever.
    It is only there-at Priority One- that the custom grip mold is applied to all of Fed's rackets and also the balance,weight etc is tweaked there, not at the Wilson Pro Room.
    In addition, Roger has P1 leather grips installed,not Wilson.
     
    #33
  34. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    This racket does have a custom grip mold though. It is definitely not retail (I've played with Wilson frames since Day 1, this is not the same as my other rackets).

    The way it was explained to me (by my very reliable connection), is that this racket was given a grip by Fed's "technician" (I assume he means P1, he is not great with English). He then got (quite a few) Fed rackets at this point, before lead taping the head or anything else. Big John , one of the members here, has also had experience with my connection.

    I am confident this is still a Fed racket (or at least the mold, but without the lead tape in the head :) )
     
    #34
  35. jackcrawford

    jackcrawford Professional

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    Great post. As a side note, remember this frame plays like a wand in Fed's hand but over the past five years, less than 1 % of ATP and WTA top 300 pros have used it - the same can't be said for the 95 Wilson series or the Pure Drive; Courier and Sampras dumped it as they dropped to the low 7.0 range - it's a fanboy/collector frame, not something anyone but Roger can play their best with.
     
    #35
  36. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    Since we know for a fact his grips are customised by P1, if your frame has some sort of custom grip it is either from P1 or is not an actual Federer frame - perhaps just a frame from the Wilson pro room.

    As I said above, take the grip off sometime and take a closer look at the pallet. All of my retail Wilson frames over the years have looked basically like your photo simply because of the way the grip was wrapped.

    We know that Roger gets four batches of 12 racquets per year - P1 has said so (I think it is 12 frames?). Other than used frames which are either kept or sold for charity auctions it's highly unlikely to be any actual Federer frames hanging around which would end up in *whoevers* hands. Ron Yu would probably know best and maybe he'll post here about it someday.

    The best we have of that is what Fabfed has posted - and he owns a number of actual playing frames. Perhaps some sharp-eyed member here will spot some key detail to confirm or deny the likelihood of your frame being an actual Federer frame.

    Could you take some close-up shots of the inner throat info and some of the decals on the frame?
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2012
    #36
  37. RJYU

    RJYU Rookie

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    I can't be totally sure, but i'm not convinced that racquet made it through our office. That's not to say it isn't a stick like Roger's, just probably not one with his specific handle mold. We get the racquets from Wilson with no handle molded on them. After molding the handle, we add the butt cap, wrap the grip, and add any further weight necessary to get to his proper spec.

    We would not have used a Wilson leather grip on that particular cosmetic, nor would we have released it from the office without additional weight added under the bumper.
     
    #37
  38. jorel

    jorel Hall of Fame

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    thanks ron
     
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  39. ENJOY TENNIS

    ENJOY TENNIS Rookie

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    Hi Ron,

    What material do You use to mould the handle?



     
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  40. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    Hey Ron! Would any pictures of parts of the racket help in figuring out if it's a fed frame? Anywhere in particular? I really want to be sure, because if it's not a real fed racket, my connection and I need to have a talk :)

    Thanks!
     
    #40
  41. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    Would a picture of the insides of the throat and a picture of inside the buttcap help?
     
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  42. RJYU

    RJYU Rookie

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    I'm pretty certain that racquet didn't come through our office. For one thing, we use P1 leather grips for his racquets now. Haven't used Wilson leather grips since late 2009 or early 2010. Not because there is any advantage using the P1 grip over the Wilson other than the fact we have a lot more around, so its easier to find 12 at a time that are the exact same thickness.

    Again, the racquet you have could be exactly the same as Roger's, but it hasn't been customized with Roger's handle or his specs.
     
    #42
  43. jorel

    jorel Hall of Fame

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    doesnt Rogs racquet also have his sig on it?
     
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  44. RJYU

    RJYU Rookie

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    Also, it looks like the "China" sticker is still on the buttcap. The first thing we do after attaching the buttcap is take that sticker off. No chance that got out of the office with that thing still on.
     
    #44
  45. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I think it's a Roger mold with a Wilson handle, upon talking to my connection. Thanks for your Help Ron!

    Do these photos help at all?
     
    #45
  46. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    ^^Picture is kind of blurry, but doesn't look like P1 work inside that handle.





    Ron, look forward to seeing you tomorrow, and meeting the guys.
     
    #46
  47. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    The best I could do, just an Iphone pic.

    You get to meet the guys? Nice work Drak! :)
     
    #47
  48. dr325i

    dr325i Legend

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    Look at the bright side -- you just proved to yourself that you can play well with the Retail stick just by thinking it is Federer's racket... It is all in your head ;)
     
    #48
  49. Fed Kennedy

    Fed Kennedy Hall of Fame

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    What is the flex rating of the fed frame?
     
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  50. ENJOY TENNIS

    ENJOY TENNIS Rookie

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    Ron, I do not know if You do not see my question about the handle, or You do not talk about because is secret..........
     
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