Discussion in 'Racquets' started by drakulie, Oct 16, 2012.
I might be in the market for one if the grip size is right so PM if you find you don't like it.
Yep, me too. In fact it might be at my house today... which is sweet cuz I can string it up and play with it this weekend. Also cool cuz I thought they weren't available til next week... but I ordered mine unstrung also... so maybe the unstrung orders can get sent out asap? In any case, LET THE EXPERIMENTING BEGIN!
Let us know if you guys actually get these early. I will actually be pissed off at TW if that is the case, I only ordered mine strung because there is no labor charge. I have my own machine like most on here and would have loved to get the frames early to string myself.
I honestly cannot believe that they will ship before the 15th though, please let us know what happens!
It looks like they are in stock right now: http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/orderproduct.html?pcode=STM99S
Hope that means they are working on stringing and shipping soon. I would love to hear a number of how many of those they have sold already.
I got a shipping notification it's "on route for delivery" according to Golden State Overnight. I ordered one unstrung. I was thinking it was due to a conversation I had with the Wilson rep for TW but she assured me she couldn't speed things up at all. Looks like I'll be hitting with the steam this weekend.!!!
Oh and "on route for delivery" with Golden state overnight, for those outside of CA means it's on it's way to my house right now. I'm pumped.
SO I am in NC and I ordered a 99s and a 105s both strung.....and I just got my shipping notification. The UPS link has not updated like a normal TW UPS number from the start, but it says shipped on and billed on 1/9/13, i really hope it went out yesterday but history leads me to believe that it is being shipped today. It is an upgrade from 1/15/13 for sure, but man I would have loved to have them for a big match I have saturday. Oh well, was not expecting it for this match anyway, if it shows up early that is great
To those posters commenting about TW scores - To be fair to TW, Ive read tons of racket reviews on this site, I dont think ive read any that are particularly unfavorable, but you can read inbetween the lines. TW is a biz, and they have to sell stuff - but on the other hand, I find rackets as a unique item; How can you give a frame a true rating? its pretty subjective to the player using it in relation to other players, which is why I dont read much into the # score but put a lot of weight on the player write ups. I still think the best tool is knowing your game and shopping it against the specs of a frame. I play with Wilson's Tour 95 BLX, and from what I read and see, its pretty unpopular and uncommon. But at the end of the day, I hit a better ball with it than any other Wilson frame, babolat, head etc. Go figure. I buy what plays the best. Shopping a score/rating, for me, was pretty useless.
^i completely agree. its great to hear what others think about the rackets. but their reviews are relativity useless IMO
no its not useless. you have to weight the pros and cons. the biggest help is watch the vid and see what they say about it. You can tell if they are excited, depressed, indifferent, etc.
with the 99s, i am seeing that they are totally commiting themselves to say its great. now you check out the specs to see if it lines up for your game.
I don't think you should be pissed at TW... that doesn't seem fair considering they sell tons of racquets with the majority of them needing to be strung... hence, a backlog. I wonder how many stringers they have on site... say... 10? and they can maybe do 12 sticks a day... I bet TW sells more than that especially when new sticks hit the market.
I ordered mine unstrung, not because I thought I'd get mine quicker... but because I want to string my own at the exact weight I want on the same stringer... repeatable... since I like to experiment with different strings/tensions.
I also happened to check the site Saturday a.m.... which might've been soon after they were available to pre-order... I may have been among the first wave to get an order in too... and I paid for the regular overnight Fedex because I thought I'd have a better chance of getting it before NEXT weekend... but I think they did a quick turnaround on the unstrung frames they sold, whereas the strings needed to be strung will take a bit more time... makes sense, no?
Looks like mine are on the way.....but I 100% disagree about their backlog and stringing time. That is not my problem as a customer and a consumer. If you advertise next-day shipping and 2-day UPS then my frame better be on UPS 2-day air by the next day. I don't care if they sell 10,000 frames that night that all need to be strung, as a company they need to get it done. Most companies deal with this during the holiday with temporary hires, I don't care how TW deals with it, just get my racquet out the next day like your policy states. If you cannot do that then I will go buy the frame from Mi*we$+ Sports. That is the lovely side of competition.
Fortunately TW has always treated me right which is why I have them 80-90% of all of the tennis $ spent during a year. The expre$$ shop with a similar name has given me nothing but excuses for all three of my purchases.....guess what, that is an easy way to lose customers quickly.
But back on point, TWs job is selling and stringing racquets, figure out how to get them all done and get them shipped.......looks like they have done just fine with the Steam as I got my shipping notification a few hours ago. I do agree that unstrung frames get shipped quicker, but strung ones should not have more then a next-day wait at most.
So if they sent you an e-mail saying, due to the recent number of orders, there is a stringing backlog, then you'd be ok?
No I would not be okay.....I would cancel my order and place it with the other company that I trust Midwe$+ Sports that day. I have done just that in the past 4 weeks. I ordered a Donnay and got an e-mail from TW that stated that due to the holiday backlog the frame would be shipped a few days later. I called immediately to cancel and they said they would have it strung and actually agreed to ship it overnight the next day (since it was already a day late). This satisfied me, maybe I am the squeaky wheel in this type of situation, but if the other company can string and ship by COB the next day I expect the same from TW.
Quick point....TW's big competitor advertises "Order today-ship today", I am sure you all know who I am talking about it here. But three ordered with them, for just simple clothing items, that were ordered in early am on day 1 and were not shipped that day. When I found they did not ship same day per that companies policy I cancelled my order and placed the same order with TW. I am a firm believer that TW takes care of customers, and they did in my 1 situation where they did not ship my strung frame in time. I spend about $2000-3000 a year on frames, string and gear, and TW service is why they get 90% of my business.
I ordered a racket on a Wed at 4PM.
It arrived free shipping on Friday at 9AM.
That's fast enough.
How about if we keep this thread on track? Start your own thread complaining about something that may or may not happen so that I am able to ignore it.
Hi OneHandBh, that's a great question : )
Just a few general comments first, upon reading the last few pages. Please understand my replies here have had little to do with the 99s, other than Wilson is the first first to produce a racquet that is both open pattern, and has fewer crosses than mains. If fewer crosses does not register for some like an astounding technological advance, that's fine with me, but it is the one key distinction. Fewer crosses dramatically reduces string to string friction, while the main concept behind open patterns for the last 25 years has been to increase ball to string friction. That's a whole 'nuther deal in my estimation. I think there is a well earned skepticism backlash that is perhaps preventing some people from absorbing some recent discoveries. Those discoveries I've mentioned a few pages back, actually predate the launch of the 99 and 105s by three to eight years. Regarding all the commentary on pro level technique: Yes, of course the pros generate levels of spin us mere mortals can only imagine, and most of us could never even hope to replicate. I think that's something we can all agree upon, but that conversation is kind of a side street leading to nowhere. A much more intriguing question to ask is this: Given the same stroke, from the same player, is it possible to increase spin by altering an equipment choice? That is a conversation that might yield something useful.
If friction is low, strings slide and snap back, this adds additional spin. There is nothing for anyone to believe or disbelieve about that statement. It's simply an observable fact. It has been observed, confirmed, and re-confirmed in three separate, independent studies beginning in 2005 in Japan, followed up with lab testing performed by the International Tennis Federation in 2006-2007, followed by more lab study by Crawford Lindsey circa 2009-2011, the results of which can be found right here in the Tennis Warehouse University section of the Learning Center. It is old news. There are dozens of high frame count, slow motion videos available that demonstrate quite clearly how that happens. In addition to the brief summary, numerous quotes, and video links I've provided on page 50, I will toss out one more. It's an article written by Joshua Speckman for The Atlantic Magazine Online several years ago. The piece contains a nice video which, near the midpoint, (3:15 - 5:15) demonstrates pretty clearly how, if the friction is low, the mains will slide, snap back, and impart additional spin as the ball exits the stringed. Link : The New Physics of Tennis, By Joshua Speckman, The Atlantic magazine http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2011/01/the-new-physics-of-tennis/308339/
String Savers and String Movement : The first assumption I sense in your question is that string savers prevent string movement. While I can't say that is 100% false, because there has never been (at least to my knowledge) any tightly controlled study that has measured this, it's at the very least, highly debatable. Player perception varies widely. There's a fair number of players who feel that string savers actually promote string movement, ie slide and snap back. Links provided below. Promoting inter string movement might actually be the intent with Babolat's Elastocross string savers, as they are coated with a friction reducing PFTE resin.
"Snap Back with String Savers"
"String savers? do they increase spin?"
"Putting string savers on multi, can it help the mains to snap back?"
Roger's Location: I would also point out (See photos provided, the bottom two courtesy of FabFed) that Fed's string savers are always located on the 4th and 6th cross down from the top, five in each row, skipping every other main for a total of ten. That's pretty high up, and the reason for that precise location is a topic of debate. What you will notice is that Fed's strings, even with the 10 string savers still move *during impact* quite a bit. We've all seen Roger fiddle with the stringed between points. I've yet to see a to photo that shows that his strings have not returned to nearly perfect alignment by themselves between shots. I think all of this indicates that his strings are probably sliding, and are snapping back to position.
Roger's Use of String Savers: The second assumption I sense in your question is that, Roger is using string savers in an attempt to prevent string movement. For all of the reasons indicated above, I don't think that's the case. If it is the case, it does not appear to be working out too well. But unless you hear the answer straight from the man himself, or from somebody in his inner circle at P1 (Drak, feel free to chime in) what you would have on your hands is just pure conjecture. I'm curious if Fed has played the bulk of his career with those 10 string savers in that location, or is that something he has done since switching to Gut/Poly. I think that might reveal at least a partial explanation.
Just For The Sake of Argument However : Let's assume that Fed is prefers playing with strings that don't move and that's what the string savers are all about. If that's the case, then he has made the worst possible overall string bed choice one can make, in any possible combination of string. That's because Gut mains, and Poly crosses have the lowest COF (coefficient of friction) of all the string beds that have been measured. This can be confirmed with a visit to the friction tool provided below. This specific hybrid combination is even more slippery than the full beds of the slickest co-polys. That's still a bit of a mystery, we don't know for sure why that happens. What we do know for sure is that for whatever reason, hybrids (even of the same material), are more slippery than full sets. A clever squirrel would then guess that the recipe for a the slickest string bed would be to select the two smoothest co-polys from different brands and lace 'em up together. Doesn't work that way. Gut M's, and Poly X's are still more slippery by comparison. Again, we don't know for sure why but the most plausible theory is that there are natural oils present in the gut which are released onto the poly crosses as they swing over them, and that these oils act as a lubricating agent. http://twu.tennis-warehouse.com/learning_center/COFreporter.php
Nutshell / Opinion : I think Roger and the team at P1 know exactly what they are doing. I think they understand the nature of Gut/Poly intimately and are using that understanding wisely and to great advantage. As conceded earlier, any opinion rendered from me on why that tennis genius does what he does is pure speculation on my part. I'd love to hear from Drak to see if he has any inner circle info.
I dunno racertempo, each to their own, but all of us did not think we were getting these sticks until mid to late next week... and here we are starting to get them today. Seems to me like TW is shipping them out as soon as they can, and it makes sense to me that unstrung would get sent out quicker than strung. That's just me I guess. I'm happy I got mine basically a week early....
Now, to pour salt in your wounds...heh, heh, heh... and as to sundaypunch's point about getting things back on track....
Mine was sitting outside the door when I got home. Since I'm in Ohio and it is a bit cool out, I'm gonna let it sit for a few hours before I give it its first string job.
First impression (tho I have demo'd the 105s twice already at my club)... I heard the grip sizes seemed to size larger... and I would say that seems to be true (using the tried and true and 100% accurate method of holding the stick in right hand (playing hand for me) and left index finger in the gap between my right palm and right middle finger. Using this method and comparing it to other racquets I have of different sizes, the handle/grip seems to be 1/8 to 1/4 bigger than advertised. It is certainly not smaller, so if someone is thinking of getting the 105s (and maybe true with the 99s?) keep this in mind.
The grip itself is not overly thick, but seems to have a solid tack feel to it. It is white, which I don't care for, so I will probably use it a few times then change to a black grip of my chosing.
There is no obvious tie-off hole, but at the head holes 7, 8, 9, 10 and at the throat holes 6, 7, 8 look like they'd work fine.
Overall quality looks ok for a mass produced made in China stick... I popped open the butt cap... cause I'm curious minded... it looks like a common baffle down in there, no space filler.
I think I will throw some Lux 4g in it.... recommended string... at.... 62#. I like to experiment so I also got a variety of other white and red strings that are polys and will look better-(Babolat Revenge, KB Pro Line II, Yonex Poly Tour 1.30, and Boris Becker Bomber), and I still have a partial reel of black BHB7, and two packs of Dunlop Black Widow... so that is a good variety to try over the next few months... (tho if it was summer, I'd be out tonight trying something!) A string that looks good in the frame is secondary... but if I have 2 strings that play very close... I'll use the one that matches better.... I've got some yellow Dunlop Juices strings for my current sticks... don't think I'll be throwing those in a red and white frame....
I don't anticipate any stringing problem, but if I do, I'll edit this. Til then, patience racertempo... patience....
Nice post ChicagoJack! There's my post throwing out opinion, and you are throwing down sources and links and pics! Remind me not to get into an online debate with you!
I responded to a question in reference to TW shipping Steam racquets, that is 100% on topic, if you don't like it then glance over it like 99% of all posts on all forms on the internet.
I am patient....and very very happy they are all getting out early......I even said that I got my shipping notification as well. I am thrilled. Totally makes sense that unstrung would ship sooner, was just going to be unhappy if that "sooner" was a week or so in time frame. Turns out it looks like it is the standard 1-day stringing turnaround time, which is fantastic. I was expecting the 18th (TW gets on 15th and ships on 16th), so any day before that time is great to me and better then I expected.
I am doing 50# in the 99s and 52# in the 105s. Let me know what you think about the full poly above 60#.....I will be really curious to see thought on that tension and all poly.
I like TW's reviews a lot.
But they were very honest where several said they like the string bed and pattern but not too hot on the frame.
I was expecting to see more raves. I thought they gave an excellent review -as in very honest
I pre-orded the first day and paid extra to sort thru them for a specific spec. I don't plan to complain about *maybe* not getting mine immediately let alone clutter up what has been a useful thread.
The frame seems to have Blade-like spec's. I would have thought that Juice / Pure Drive spec's would have been more popular for the crowd that wants a spin machine. I'm going to assume that Wilson has tested this on a wide variety of versions and thought this was the most appropriate.
Copycat of Wilson Steam S
Just for fun, I strung up my racquet to copy the concept of Wilson Steam S, basically turning the 16X20 pattern into 16X10.
At first, I had a very hard time controlling the ball but the control got somewhat better in a few minutes of adjustment.
Unfortunately, I didn't notice any significant increase in spin. Only the launch angle was higher.
Congratulations for you, you are a model poster. :???: This thread is 60 pages long with about 20 pages of legit content, sorry for adding just another 2-3 posts out of 1079 total posts, especially when it refereed to TW shipping the frames in question. Don't like what I write, feel free to ignore, such a great thing about the internet.
Wilson's claim what the 15 was the perfect number of crosses to allow for the snap-back to occur with optimum performance. Perhaps your 16x10 did not spin as much because there were not enough crosses to forcibly throw the main back in position quickly enough for it to effect the shot. 16x14 might do better.
Just an FYI... the recommended range for the 105 is 57-67, and from what I've heard/read the higher weight works well in this stick to temper the power and increase the control without losing any "comfort". I wanted to check the tension on the demo after I hit with it to see what I was actually hitting with, but they couldn't find their stringmeter. I bet if you string at 52, that is gonna be a bazooka! Which is good if you can tame it!
I first demo'd them both (99s and 105s) at 62 hybrid on them both. There were a few guys on here who demo'd and said they did 50# without a problem with this frame. I demo'd it again and he was due for a restring so I talked him into letting me take it to string how I like, then return it and he could cut it out for his hybrid.....and I did 52# and loved it (this was in the 99s). I am dying to hear what you think about full poly at 60+# as I was too afraid of no power at all.
I have slowly moved my stringing from 60# to 50# in my other frames a little at a time and love the full poly at lower tension.....but like you mentioned, the recommended number for the steam are so high. For the 105s the recommended tension is 57-67!!!! So that left me with the thought of does a 57# there = a 50# on my yonex that is recommended from 50-65? It was a couple of reviews on here from guys saying the low 50s was great for them with the 99s, so i'll let you know how it goes. Please please post early and let us know your stringing thoughts.....most in the 60 range have been hybrids so far and I cannot recall a review of all poly at 62#.
At least you are back on topic now.
Just got done stringer 'er up... won't hit with it til Saturday, unless it is 50 and dry tomorrow... I don't think it will be that warm tomorrow... anyway....
...as for a tension, it does make a big difference in terms of swing speed/style and tension I agree... what might be good for you at 50 I might like at 56... anyway...
My current set-up really suits my topspin FH, topspin 1H BH and defensive slice BH, and solid kicker 2nd serve... I use full poly (Dunlop Juice 16) at 52#... so racertempo you and I are already pretty close tension wise. (I don't think I have played poly higher than 57.)
I also use a very light racquet because I can get more racquet head speed. To really use poly the best you have to swing hard... and its seems like that is what moves the strings and gives the snap back which gives the spin. So... if that is true, then with a supposed launch-y type stick like the 105, higher tension will take away some of its power... making me have to hit harder... thus getting more benefit of the open pattern and slippery poly. I am open to dissension on this, it is what I think happens tho.
So, like I said, I strung it at 62... (I'll report back with this, and if anyone is interested I can edit in some of the other strings I have to try... but I think there will be plenty who will soon be adding their experience).
The racquet itself is easy as you might imagine to string... no shared holes, open pattern, weaving was a piece of cake, even the top/last weaves no problem. I tied off the main @ 6 throat which seemed pretty natural.
The cross tie off I had to think about for a second or two... I tied it off @ 5 head, and I'd be interested to hear other opinions. The last cross exits at 7H: 8H 9H 10H 11H were too tight to squeeze a knot in, 6H is too close, and I think 4 was near my clamp... but looking at it again, I think 4H would also work.
The two bonus things about this stick, fewer weaves = faster stringing and less string used... so you could really stretch a reel further if you measure well... save a little $ there. I measured a regular 11ft short side/29ft long side... had about a normal amount left on the short side, and a couple feet (estimate) extra on the long side that I cut off BEFORE I even pulled the last cross and tied off.
That being said, I used the recommended Luxilon G4 16.... PAIN IN THE BLANK! Major coil memory issue. Maybe this pack just came off the extruder, but wow... I've got 3 other packs of it and I'm curious if they will all coil like this. Its a regular poly... stiff, tougher to tie knots, slick like... but the coil issue added 10+ minutes easy. That, and the color doesn't go with the stick :-( The G4 might look a little better in the new Blades, kind of... but I think it would look a lot better in the Donnay X Gold. But that's just my fashionista sense. Anyone got a problem wit dat??
Just a quick update on stringing with different gut/poly hybrids and durability.
I have found that using a thicker poly than the gut, helps durability. For example, a 16 gauge gut in the mains, with 15 gauge poly in crosses, will last longer than if you had both at the same gauge. Or a 17 gauge gut mains/16 gauge poly crosses. etc.
Just before I take the bait and buy one, I would like to throw this out. Maybe someone can talk me out of it. Then again I like the excitement of being on the cutting edge.
Starting out, I play mostly 4.0 and some 4.5 players. I do play heavy topspin on both sides with a backhand slice as needed when on my heels. The kids I play are very fast. Add to that , top spin is not going to bother them at all. Moreover, topspin tends to allow them more time to get dialed in.(Yes I know it kicks off faster when it leaves the ground,) but they are camped, and ready to whale it back, due to the extra hang time.
I find in order to beat them I normally mix it up with some really hard flat shots. Otherwise they get in a grove with the topspin and actually thrive on it.
So, I am reluctant to go to a racket with a higher projection over the net. (Those who understand will understand) Bottom line I am wondering if the increase in hang time will be counter productive at levels above 3.5.
What say you??
Do the pros play with a lot of topspin? There's my answer.
I hit pretty hard and have no problem flattening my FH. I do want the option to have more spin as it allows me to hit harder with a faster stroke and the spin brings the ball down into the court rather than out.
That said, I haven't tried the Steam 99s and can't tell if it will slow my game down clearing the net higher. Can you demo a 99s first?
ditto this. Once I got used to the frame (like any other frame), I haven't found any problems flattening the ball out and hitting thru the court. The extra spin, even on flat shots, helps many shots that would other wise go long,,, land in.
Drak these rackets are no good. Why did they make the SW so high ? there is no room for customization to my liking
Have a great sun-shiny day, and God Bless.
What is DUBM ? does it have something to do with bowel movement ?
Is it just me or does this guy always have something idiotic to say?
Not just you. It would be very hard not to notice.
Drak, have you tried the flat/rectangular polys from Gosen, Polymater I & II in the crosses? I haven't had the chance to, but the flat surfaces of those string might not cut into the gut mains at all, or not for a while.
The steams are so stiff. I suffer from arm problems, would you recommend this? Or should I just stick with the more flexible BLX Tour?
We are very very close in play styles, I am a 1H BH as well with mostly defensive slices to keep people back, but I charge the net at any chance at all and thus volley a ton. For that reason I also like the lighter and sometimes larger head sizes for net play, which is why I like the 105s. I hit the 105s with my ball machine with the 62# hybrid string job and did not find too much power, so my thought is full poly will be even less power......yet I wanted more power then I had. Unfortunately mine will not be here until Monday so I cannot use them for my big match tomorrow, but I have all 2013 to use them
Mine showed up last night as expected. It will be strung up and ready for a hit tomorrow. I'm excited. Going with Pro Hurricane tour in the low 50's. Tolerance was very nice mine came in at 302 and 6 to 5.5 points head light. Close enough for me.
Now that they are appearing on a court near you - can players report back on the swingweight.
TW has it at 333 on the review page.
But 325 in the racquet comparison tool
So which is it, like a Blade or lighter to swing, or neither? cheers
My 11 y.o. demo'd a 99S tonight and liked it. What do you recommend string wise for a kid with this racket? She got more pace than usual and her high top spins dropped in more easily.
Wilson Steam 99
Wilson is coming out with the Steam 99 and the Steam 99S.
Is the first one anything like the second one?
Same frame but different string pattern. 99 is a normal pattern, S is the 16x15. According to the TW reviews, they are noticeable different to hit with.
they are already out. And there are hundreds of posts on these racquets.
Separate names with a comma.