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-   -   Rare VS Babolat Tool Set and Starting Clamp (photos included) (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=260175)

drakulie 05-08-2009 09:27 PM

Rare VS Babolat Tool Set and Starting Clamp (photos included)
 
I just purchased the 12-piece tool set pictured here. As you could see, it is an older set, but nearly in perfect condition. The original owner only used them a few times, and states he paid about $350 for them. Not sure what year it's from, so I'm hoping someone will chime in and give a bit of history about these beautiful tools. vsBabolat (the all knowing), from the boards emailed me and was kind enough to inform me he seems to think they are from the early 80's, maybe early 90's.

The tool set includes 6 awls, parallel pliers, cam action pliers, starting clamp, needle nose, and bent nose pliers, and a wooden awl that has no shaft on it. It looks to be some sort of tool, where one inserts a shaft or blade????, and then turns the knob to tighten the piece in place.

can anyone out there give me a history of these tools?? or what the wooden tool is for???

Thanks in advance.






drakulie 05-08-2009 09:28 PM

Photos of the pliers:



Awls:




drakulie 05-08-2009 09:30 PM

Here is one of the more interesting pieces from the set; the starting clamp (pictured on the left). In the middle is the famous Red Starting Clamp regarded as the very best in the business, and on the right is the new version, the Blue Starting Clamp.

In this photo, you could see the difference between the starting clamp in the tool set and the famous red starting clamp. The tool set version states “Made In France” above the “VS” logo, and does not have eyelets (holes where one puts the string thru to use as a jumper). Additionally, has a wider jaw space, like the latest incarnation from Babolat (the blue version).

In this photo, you could see the difference in jaw space. The tool set version, like the famous red starting clamp lays flat. However, the blue version has a tiny bit of space at the end of the jaws. Many stringers state this is their only issue with this version, because if you lay the string in there it tends to slip.



Hope everyone has enjoyed this thread. Also, again am hoping Yulitle, Jim E, vsBabolat, Steve huff, etc chime in and anyone else out there are able to give me more history on these tools.
Thanks!

zidane339 05-08-2009 10:18 PM

Wow, that tool set is a stringer's dream! How much did you get it for Drak?

drakulie 05-08-2009 10:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zidane339 (Post 3401032)
Wow, that tool set is a stringer's dream! How much did you get it for Drak?

Thanks!! yes, the tool set is amazing, and is practically new. The parallel, cam action, and starting clamp look as if they have never been used. Many of the awls are the same. The gentleman I purcahsed it from thought they were for working on upholstery like leather, and when he received them, realized they weren't suited, so he put them away. Lucky for me, he got tired of having them laying around and sold them to me.

As for the price, would rather not say, as people may think I'm a thief! :)

AndrewD 05-08-2009 10:48 PM

Drakulie,

Might amount to nothing but..... in a number of the hard shell camera cases we have, the manufacturers have stamped the date on the inside. Might be worth taking up the foam and checking to see if there's anything there.

Bud 05-09-2009 12:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by drakulie (Post 3401094)
Thanks!! yes, the tool set is amazing, and is practically new. The parallel, cam action, and starting clamp look as if they have never been used. Many of the awls are the same. The gentleman I purcahsed it from thought they were for working on upholstery like leather, and when he received them, realized they weren't suited, so he put them away. Lucky for me, he got tired of having them laying around and sold them to me.

As for the price, would rather not say, as people may think I'm a thief! :)

Very nice find there! :)

MAX PLY 05-09-2009 05:39 AM

Outstanding find. Thanks for sharing.

vsbabolat 05-09-2009 10:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by drakulie (Post 3400941)
Awls:


Wow! I just realized you have a awl with the old Babolat Maillot Witt Logo. It is the on the bottom of the photo. I would guess mid to late 80's when they changed the name and logo to BabolatVS.

drakulie 05-09-2009 10:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AndrewD (Post 3401101)
Drakulie,

Might amount to nothing but..... in a number of the hard shell camera cases we have, the manufacturers have stamped the date on the inside. Might be worth taking up the foam and checking to see if there's anything there.

Thanks, I didn't even think of that. Anyway, looked, but alas>>> nothing there. :(


Quote:

Originally Posted by Bud (Post 3401232)
Very nice find there! :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by MAX PLY (Post 3401564)
Outstanding find. Thanks for sharing.


Thanks guys. Glad you liked the photos.

drakulie 05-09-2009 11:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vsbabolat (Post 3402147)
Wow! I just realized you have a awl with the old Babolat Mallot Witt Logo. It is the on the bottom of the photo. I would guess mid to late 80's when they changed the name and logo to BabolatVS.


Hey! Thanks for chiming in. I kept wondering what that logo stood for.

Couple of things about that particular awl. Not sure if you could tell from the photos, but the awl is beveled. Seems to me it is a Bradawl; an awl used to specifically work on wood. Wonder if this particular awl was put in this set, in case stringers were still working on wood frames???

Does that make sense, since the logo (as you say) was an earlier logo??????

Also the wooden awl seems to be a grommet grinder. However, the "grinders" are missing from the set. If you look, there are two spaces for plastic boxes (one is missing) in the tool set. The gentleman I purcahsed it from said he lost one fo the plastic boxes, but seems to remember there were tool pieces in there.

TheShaun 05-09-2009 12:28 PM

Drak, thanks for sharing. Some guys have all the luck!

Irvin 05-09-2009 01:27 PM

Just happen to have an old stringer's digest laying around and that tool set is listed in the 1990-1991 Stringer's Digest for $285 with this article titled Kudo's to Babolat (An editoial Obervation.)

"Babolat VS provides stringers with some of the best quality tools on the market. Babolat's finely-crafted German-made tool kit provides any tool necessary for a professional string job.

The Babolat VS tool kit (available for $285), offers six high grade specialty awls, including square, curved and blunt-tipped tapered awls; also spring action cutters, needle nose pliers and parallel jaw pliers. Other tools include cam-action pliers, plier grippers, string puller and tweezers. The tools fit in a foam packed carrying case - a professional package. Babolat's tools are available separately, but if you can afford the kit, we think you've made a top-quality. long term investment."

By the way the wooden tool is a called a Pull Along (a.k.a. Pull Through. Come Along): uses a loop-tipped wire to pull strings through tight or shared holes. Individually they were priced $4 to $20 (I would imagine $20 for the Babolat.) Extra wires were about $0.20 cents each.

I could scan the article in pdf format and and email it to you if you want. Just let me know.

Nice find and thanks for sharing.

Irvin

drakulie 05-09-2009 03:53 PM

Irvin, thank you so much for your research and following up here.!!!!

Yes, please email me the pdf file at drakulie@aol.com. Much appreciated.

I kept wondering what the metal wires in the clear plastic case were for. There are several in there (never used). I would have never guessed the wooden awl (Pull Along) was used for this purpose. Great stuff!!!!

As for the tools being made in Germany, the awls don't have the country of origin, however, the starting clamp and cam action say made in France. The cam action also has "BabolatVS" engraved in the metal. Not sure if you could see it.

The bent pliers (which are not mentioned in the article), do say made in Germany, as do the parallel and needle nose pliers.

Here is a photo of the bent nose:





The bent and needle nose pliers are the two tools the guy used, as you could see from the wear. All other tools are like new.

Only thing missing is the second clear plastic case and the tweezers. I'm wondering if one could order to tool set and request specific tools, since I don't see and cutters as mentioned in the article.

Anyway, thank you so much for assisting. Much, **MUCH** appreciated. :)

Irvin 05-09-2009 04:22 PM

Drakulie the files are on their way. Let me know if you do not get them.

Irvin

Irvin 05-09-2009 04:32 PM

Drakulie that tool set is in the 1987 Stringer's Digest for $250. Pretty much the same article - Kudo's to Babolat. Two years later they had a price increase to $285. At that rate they should be worth about $900 now. lol

Irvin

mdqm 05-10-2009 06:26 PM

dddddrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaakkkkkkkkk
hey my friend very nice find,enjoy these tools:).
hope see you next sunday

drakulie 05-11-2009 06:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Irvin (Post 3403044)
Drakulie that tool set is in the 1987 Stringer's Digest for $250. Pretty much the same article - Kudo's to Babolat. Two years later they had a price increase to $285. At that rate they should be worth about $900 now. lol

Irvin


Hey, Irvin! Once again>>> a million thanks for the pdf file! Great to read the history of the tools.

I find it interesting the tool set went from 250 to 285 in such a short time, and 20 years later the tool set Babolat now sells goes for 350. :confused:


Quote:

Originally Posted by mdqm (Post 3405753)
dddddrrrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaakkkkkkkkk
hey my friend very nice find,enjoy these tools:).
hope see you next sunday

Majic Man!! Thanks! I was going to call you and tell you to look at this thread, but never got around to it. Glad you found it. I knew you would definitely appreciate this tool set.

Yes, I'll call you this weekend to set up a hit on Sunday. :)

By the way, LOVE the new avatar!!!! :evil:

iplaybetter 05-11-2009 06:56 AM

that starter is good, one of the Indian wells stingers has a few with blue handles(not the new one, but the one without eyelets to serve as a jumper) and i got to try it, really nice clamp

nice find

drakulie 05-12-2009 06:17 AM

^^^Thanks. Yes, all three of those starting clamps are nice. I tried the original one last night, and it worked very, VERY well. Lots of clamping power. Although my favorite is the clamp in the middle.

Anyway, was able to use some of the tools yesterday, and they are awesome. Very happy with the set. :)


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