Which is more helpful against heavy hitters? Swing weight or static weight?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by hisrob777, Mar 14, 2013.

  1. hisrob777

    hisrob777 Rookie

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    I'm a 4.0-4.5 hitter. I just switched from a leaded up Wilson BLX Blade 98 18x20 to an Dunlop Aerogel 4D 500 Tour. I like the Dunlop fine stock until I play against heavy hitters. It feels unstable with a lack of plow through. What should I do? Increase swing weight with a little lead at 12 o'clock or customized the whole frame to be an ounce heavier or something?
     
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  2. treblings

    treblings Hall of Fame

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    if it feels unstable, why not lead it up at 3 and 9?

    your question brings up one of the biggest dilemmas that i have.
    against a heavy hitter i tend to look for the most plow-thru possible.
    against a topspin-artist i like much more maneuverability
    to find the right compromise without changing the specs of your racquet
    is so difficult for me.
     
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  3. Anton

    Anton Hall of Fame

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    My rule to customizing is to get racket minimally stable first, then add weight to get the right balance (usually that means adding weight in handle) and the right swingweight (adding lead at 12)

    If you feel your racket is torsionally unstable add weight at 3 and 9, then add some weight in the handle to offset balance change and finally if the racket at that point doesn't feel too heavy but just doesn't carry through the stroke too well, add weight at 12.

    How much weight to add? That's the part you'll have to play around with.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2013
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  4. hisrob777

    hisrob777 Rookie

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    Thanks for input.
     
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  5. Power Player

    Power Player G.O.A.T.

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    How much did you lead up your Blade?

    Just curious really. I play mine stock after I added lead for a little while to find an ideal SW.

    What I have found is that the Blade handles big hitters just fine stock - the key is your timing. It's all about hitting the ball out in front.

    The correlation to SW is key here. A high SW is meaningless if you are late to contact. Also, more importantly, how well can you serve with a higher SW?

    Anyway, there are plenty of guys playing D1 tennis and above with stock Blades. So you should have no issues with that Dunlop either. But if you are dealing with too much twisting, definitely lead at 3 and 9.

    Just make sure you are contacting the ball on time. That really is the main key.
     
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  6. getsby

    getsby Semi-Pro

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    IMO, affects the following.
    -static weight,
    -stiffness,
    -stability.
    all the components, the more, the better
     
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  7. hisrob777

    hisrob777 Rookie

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    I had my Blade polarized at around 12.5 oz. I have taken them back to stock. I just didn't feel like I got enough finishing power or spin with the 18x20. I still love the stick for practicing.
     
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  8. acura9927

    acura9927 Semi-Pro

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    Static Weight. I use to own a Dunlop Bio 200 Tour and all I had to do was put the racquet head against a heavy ball and it would go back with not much effort.
     
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  9. hisrob777

    hisrob777 Rookie

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    I added four 2 inch strips of lead at 3 and 9. Big difference in stability. Thanks for the suggestion.
     
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  10. ATP100

    ATP100 Professional

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    Easy Answer: Footwork.
     
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  11. corners

    corners Legend

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    Rafa answers this question: The static weight of his racquets is less than 12 ounces, but his swingweight is 360+. High swingweight/low static weight seems to be the thing in the WTA, while ATP pros, with the exception of Rafa and a couple others, typically have high swingweight AND high static weight.

    Basically, Rafa and the WTA pros use similar racquets as most ATP pros use, but with an ounce or more "removed" from the handle. Going by the specs collected by various pro stringers, the WTA top-20 average swingweight appears to be about 330+ (with a few extreme outliers - the Williams sisters are over 370), while the men are at 350+ (with some of the bigger guys, Berdych, etc., over 380).
     
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  12. ryydman

    ryydman Rookie

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    I have both the Wilson and the Dunlop sticks you're talking about.

    I agree with the previous poster that the BLX Blade 98 doesn't need lead in the hoop for stability, however, i like 2 over grips to help counterbalance the stick's weight.

    The 4D 500 Tour, i also use 2 over grips, 3g lead at the butt and 5g of lead in the hoop with head protection tape (about another 3g), totaling around 8g in the hoop.

    3g at the butt of the handle
    2g at 2 o'clock
    2g at 10 o'clock
    1g at 12'oclock
    tape from 4-8 o'clock

    I use the thicker gamma lead tape (5cm = 1g) at 2 & 10 and a strip of the thinner tape (1g = 10cm) at 12.

    The Dunlop is a nice stick, narrow sweet spot aside. With a vibe dampener it comes in at 354g.
     
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  13. Tmano

    Tmano Professional

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    I don't know how heady is your current racquet but if it is lighter than 11.8 oz I would ad some weight at 3 nd 9...but nnot too much, maybe 3 or 4 grams.
    However, you should not customize your racquet based on someone's game. Tha racquet has to be your weapon and with it you have to be able to handle different kinds of players.
     
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  14. Power Player

    Power Player G.O.A.T.

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    I havent played anyone between 4 and 5.5 who hits heavy enough to even bother my stock Blades. I think its more about timing and footwork, even though this is the un sexy answer.

    Also, a key part is gripsize. Make sure that you are using the best size for your hand.

    The next thing is more about swing speed. How fast is your stick coming through the air? You will know if it is too fast after a few outings. So you will want to get your Swing Weight up a little. This helps a ton. But if you go too big with your SW, you will be late and your stick will still get pushed around.

    I hit with an ex college player yesterday who hits pretty hard and flat, and my 336 gram stick was just fine. I was able to send the pace right back, and we had some great exchanges. I have slowly added lead over time and started lighter than I wanted. It helped to get a feel for the racquet before worrying about heavy balls or anything else.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2013
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  15. tistrapukcipeht

    tistrapukcipeht Professional

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    Your technique is more important, for somebody to hit really hard you also need to hit hard, if one doesn't both don't, despite of the fact that at my league level 5.0 only the 15/16 y.o Jrs hit serves over 100 mph regularly and hit heavier balls, still nothing compared to professional players.

    So you are not hitting against pros anything should work fine, I had been successful with my Ezone Xi against 5 and below, and just decided to move a notch up and go with vcore 97 310g, it is not giving anymore stability that i didnt have with the ezones, although both are rock solid racquets as they are, have a better technique and you won't have problems, if you are always chasing balls out of position then it's not the racquet either, it's you.
     
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  16. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Key in tennis, regardless of racket weight, is to hit the first heavy ball and make your opponent uncomfortable and out of position.
    If you allow a peer to set and smack a forehand, no racket is heavy enough to defend his shots.
     
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  17. Timbo's hopeless slice

    Timbo's hopeless slice Hall of Fame

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    depends if you can play or not, really..

    if you basically can't (see acura's post above) then static weight is king. (you're just blocking the thing anyway, may as well be 14 oz!)

    however, if you develop any kind of RHS at all (see PP above), then sw is your friend, but you have to meet the ball with a moving racquet, not hang it out there and bunt it back like an 80 year old..

    I played a guy once ranked in the top 200 last night, I had an 11.5 oz racquet and he had a Blade 98 (I dunno what that weighs but I doubt it is a lot)

    nobody was getting 'pushed around' out there cos we both actually hit the ball... (ye, ye, of COURSE I lost!)
     
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  18. prjacobs

    prjacobs Professional

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    I didn't do this much with my 4D 500 tour. I'd start with 2 grams and 3 and 9 and 4 grams under the grip.
     
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  19. mcnota

    mcnota Rookie

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    it's not the racket, dennis istomin made it to the top 200 with a stock head radical uncustomized

    you just have to have a very loose wrist and good timing to deal with big shots

    ill admit that a 370g even balanced racket will give you great 'plow through' and more than likely will never get 'pushed around' but it will sacrifice swingspeed and spin because it is so heavy

    i make my rackets 340-345 swingweight, best of both worlds

    there wilson blx six one 95's with some lead at 12
     
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  20. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    My thoughts exactly. When you reach "enough" stability, then try some counterbalancing (I like to put lead tape under my overgrips) if you want a little maneuverability. Consider marking your racquet's balance point while it's still in its stock layout - just balance it on the edge of a counter and mark it with a pencil or piece of tape. Once it's right for you, you'll feel it.
     
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  21. klementine

    klementine Hall of Fame

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    I'm in agreement with all the posters who have suggested the same, timing and bat speed. Stability (imo) is something that's based on feel and that's way too subjective to be considered objectively.

    A high swing weight will have a more adverse effect on timing as opposed to having just a high static weight, through my experience.

    All depends on what you're used to as well or how you decide to use these characteristics. If you're going to have a high swingweight AND a high static weight, unless you have your timing down, forget about it.

    A good formula is usually a high swing weight in conjunction with a low static weight or a low(er) swing weight and a higher static weight.

    I prefer the latter, lower swing weight, higher static.
     
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  22. hisrob777

    hisrob777 Rookie

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    So far so good with the lead strips at 3 and 9. I'm working hard on my footwork, take back and follow through. Really enjoying this racquet now. I am enjoying the discussion on the thread and appreciate the input.
     
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  23. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    I switched to regular Aero500's after 2 years of Mfil and Aero 200's, so the static weight difference is easy 25 points and the SW difference about that.
    Yes, the 500 rally's weaker, but can play better, depending on my game.
    Added 3 strips of 1/4" tape, 6" each, to the 10-2 and 12 position on the head. SW is very similar to 200's, maybe around 330, but static weight is only mid 10's, instead of mid 12 oz.
    Hits OK so far.
    SW of the Mfils is around 340, and the Aero around 350. I was looking for quicker manueverability at net, and and easier fast flat first serve.
     
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  24. tball

    tball Semi-Pro

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    I'd say swingweight. I've used 2 racquets successfully in the past against big hitters: Wilson HyperHammer 5.3 and Head Tour Lite 630. Both are light (310-320 g), but head-heavy. They stood to heavy hitting best of all racquets I had. Bottom-heavy racquets did not faire so well. The notable exceptions were Volkl C10 and DNX 10, but still no match to HyperHammer. Currently, my best racquets agains heavy hitters are Head Prestige Pro and Donnay X-Dual Pro.
     
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  25. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Most pros use "bottom heavy" or head light, but heavy rackets. Most, not all.
    I'm on the fence. While my 12.5 oz headlight rackets can hit a good ball, so can my 10.5 oz head heavy rackets.
    I'm torn and on the fence.
     
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  26. hisrob777

    hisrob777 Rookie

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    I've gone back to my Blades. Using a nice monofilament(x1 or prince premier attack) Right now they are stock but I'm thinking about adding a little lead to 12oclock. Forever tinkering......
     
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  27. KenC

    KenC Professional

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    The thing with too much SW is that it takes too much effort to get the racquet back and then accelerate it forward, and then decelerate it. Do that over a 100 times and you will no longer pose any threat to a consistent, hard hitting opponent. Moreover, your serve will suffer enormously as this is where SW is not your friend. Might as well pack it in and spring for the beers.

    OTOH, a nice light SW let's you accelerate and decelerate with ease. Put some static weight on the handle or even as high as the throat for stability and plow through if needed.

    I regularly played 5.0s and 5.5s with a stock PSLGT with a swingweight somewhere around 315 or so and had no problems nailing the ball back. You just need good technique that transfers body weight into the shot combined with a nice long, fast stroke.

    My general advice to all is to adjust the SW to where you can swing the racquet and serve without excessive fatigue for three sets. In effect, most people really have too slow of a swing and try to compensate by adding lead when they should be adding muscle and technique. The pro's have high SWs because they have have the speed and strength to swing a 360 SW for 3 or more sets.
     
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  28. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    If you think the racket is too light, add some lead at 9-3.
    SW of your racket is supposed to be 325.
    I weight my Aero500s to just around that, keep the weight under 11 oz, and it hits fine against anyone who cares to hit with me.
    If you need SW's over 325, you should be hitting a better ball before you opponent his his best shots.
     
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  29. hisrob777

    hisrob777 Rookie

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    I'm officially done with the dunlop. Stock BLX Blade 18x20 with full bed of X-1 biphase is has been terrific. I want to like the dunlop so bad but I can't keep the ball in with a soft string and poly kills my arm.
     
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