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-   -   I want to play with wood again. Which racquet? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=475432)

Baxter 08-31-2013 01:57 PM

I want to play with wood again. Which racquet?
 
What's a good wood racquet for someone who wants to play with one? Should I get an unused one off **** or just try my luck at garage sales? What should I expect to pay for a playable wood racquet?

Mick 08-31-2013 02:21 PM

Wilson Jack Kramer Autograph. That's my favorite wood racquet.

Baxter 08-31-2013 02:56 PM

As long as it's not warped it should play OK, correct?

Mick 08-31-2013 03:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Baxter (Post 7709821)
As long as it's not warped it should play OK, correct?

yeah even warped one would play ok too, although not as good :)

you just need to change your strokes a little bit to accomodate the wood racquet, that's all.

joe sch 08-31-2013 03:46 PM

You dont want to play an old warped woody
Get one that is straight and in nice condition, ie no major court rash or beam edge damage. Also, the strings are very important and if you get on that has old syn gut string then it will play sorta dead. A nice wood with good new playable strings or nat gut will play very heavenly

Kevin V 08-31-2013 04:18 PM

Here are a few that are nice and very abundant on ****.

- Wilson Jack Kramer Autograph
- Wilson Jack Kramer Pro Staff
- Wilson Advantage
- Dunlop Maxply Fort

Keep in mind that they come in light and medium versions, so you can be looking at anything between 12.5 oz to 14 oz.

Definitely ask the seller if the racquet is warped at all. You should be able to pick up a very nice copy for $15 to $30.

Mick 08-31-2013 05:09 PM

i have a number of new wood racquets but i prefer to use this slightly warped big bill tilden racquet on the right. It still plays great even with old string :)


joe sch 09-01-2013 05:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mick (Post 7710201)
i have a number of new wood racquets but i prefer to use this slightly warped big bill tilden racquet on the right. It still plays great even with old string :)


Few of us know how good those early 1900 wood racquets play.
The Wright & Ditson and Spalding Bill Tilden model is a classic especially since used by Tilden who was the best player in tennis in the 1920s. I have several in mint condition, they are incredible sticks and about 15oz of old hard wood.

BTW, Tilden won the USO 6 straight times and was in the final of the USO 9 of 10 years during that era. How amazing is that ?
Bill also won 3 Wimbledon titles and played as an amateur for 15 years, winning 90% of his matches.
He then play as a pro for 15 more years and had almost as impressive a record. 30+ years of world class tennis competition !

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Ti...eer_statistics

Capt. Willie 09-01-2013 07:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mick (Post 7710201)
i have a number of new wood racquets but i prefer to use this slightly warped big bill tilden racquet on the right. It still plays great even with old string :)


Mick or Joe....whoever wants to take this. Is that Tilden racquet actually from the 1920's? Any way of accurately dating it? I would assume it was produced for many years, even decades.

Rabbit 09-01-2013 07:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Baxter (Post 7709573)
What's a good wood racquet for someone who wants to play with one? Should I get an unused one off **** or just try my luck at garage sales? What should I expect to pay for a playable wood racquet?

Why not buy one from TW?

http://www.tennis-warehouse.com/Bosw...CBOS-BSBG.html

It's new, never been strung, and as good a wood frame as you're going to find.

Mick 09-01-2013 12:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Capt. Willie (Post 7711571)
Mick or Joe....whoever wants to take this. Is that Tilden racquet actually from the 1920's? Any way of accurately dating it? I would assume it was produced for many years, even decades.

Hi Capt. Willie, I am definitely not an expert but when I bought mine, I googled up some photos of Big Bill Tilden playing and it appeared the racquets in the later years were more rounded instead of square like this one. This one did look like the ones that Tilden used in the 1920s based upon the photos I had seen.

BreakPoint 09-01-2013 12:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mick (Post 7710201)
i have a number of new wood racquets but i prefer to use this slightly warped big bill tilden racquet on the right. It still plays great even with old string :)


Do you know when that Dunlop Maxply with the graphite inlay in the hoop was produced? I've always had this suspicion that McEnroe may have used a racquet that had the hoop stiffened but painted to look like a retail Maxply Fort when he first went over to Dunlop so as to make it play more like the Wilson Jack Kramer Pro Staff that he had used for years which had a much stiffer hoop than the retail Maxply Fort, which had a very flexible hoop.

Capt. Willie 09-01-2013 01:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mick (Post 7712401)
Hi Capt. Willie, I am definitely not an expert but when I bought mine, I googled up some photos of Big Bill Tilden playing and it appeared the racquets in the later years were more rounded instead of square like this one. This one did look like the ones that Tilden used in the 1920s based upon the photos I had seen.

I was thinking that maybe there was a change in the stripes or some other subtle markings over the years. I didn't realize there was an actual change to the shape...that is interesting.

Anyway, awesome racquet! I think I'd be afraid to play with it.

Mick 09-01-2013 01:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BreakPoint (Post 7712437)
Do you know when that Dunlop Maxply with the graphite inlay in the hoop was produced? I've always had this suspicion that McEnroe may have used a racquet that had the hoop stiffened but painted to look like a retail Maxply Fort when he first went over to Dunlop so as to make it play more like the Wilson Jack Kramer Pro Staff that he had used for years which had a much stiffer hoop than the retail Maxply Fort, which had a very flexible hoop.

Sorry, I have no ideas. Hopefully someone here can shred some light :-)

slowfox 09-01-2013 06:25 PM

Perhaps also consider the transitional ones i.e. wood graphite combos. PK Golden Ace or Head Edgewood... off the top of my head.

vsbabolat 09-01-2013 06:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BreakPoint (Post 7712437)
Do you know when that Dunlop Maxply with the graphite inlay in the hoop was produced? I've always had this suspicion that McEnroe may have used a racquet that had the hoop stiffened but painted to look like a retail Maxply Fort when he first went over to Dunlop so as to make it play more like the Wilson Jack Kramer Pro Staff that he had used for years which had a much stiffer hoop than the retail Maxply Fort, which had a very flexible hoop.

That did not happen. Its only in your dreams!

BreakPoint 09-01-2013 09:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vsbabolat (Post 7713528)
That did not happen. Its only in your dreams!

Well obviously Dunlop had a version of the Maxply that had a stiffer hoop (as shown in the pic above) which would have played closer to the Jack Kramer Pro Staff that McEnroe used for many years, which also had a stiffer hoop. If this racquet was available to him, why would he choose to play with a racquet (retail Maxply Fort) that played completely different from the one that he was used to playing with and with which he won 2 consecutive US Opens? That would make zero sense.

I owned both the Maxply Fort and the JK Pro Staff so I know how differently they played. I played great with the Maxply but it was very difficult to control volleys or put away volleys due to the very flexible hoop. The JK Pro Staff, OTOH, had a much stiffer hoop so it was much better for volleying. They were completely different frames so I find it very hard to believe that anyone (including McEnroe) could volley so well with the JKPS and then turn around and volley just as well with the Maxply so quickly as the feel and control on volleys was night and day difference, and McEnroe's net game was based on feel.

robbo1970 09-01-2013 11:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BreakPoint (Post 7712437)
Do you know when that Dunlop Maxply with the graphite inlay in the hoop was produced? I've always had this suspicion that McEnroe may have used a racquet that had the hoop stiffened but painted to look like a retail Maxply Fort when he first went over to Dunlop so as to make it play more like the Wilson Jack Kramer Pro Staff that he had used for years which had a much stiffer hoop than the retail Maxply Fort, which had a very flexible hoop.

I've got a feeling it was as early as 1979. Although I'm not sure pj's were quite as good as what they are these days. I think it would be hard to hide that black graphite inlay going around the hoop.

I actually use that racquet when I play with a woodie. Its a very nice racquet to use.

vsbabolat 09-02-2013 03:34 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BreakPoint (Post 7713826)
Well obviously Dunlop had a version of the Maxply that had a stiffer hoop (as shown in the pic above) which would have played closer to the Jack Kramer Pro Staff that McEnroe used for many years, which also had a stiffer hoop. If this racquet was available to him, why would he choose to play with a racquet (retail Maxply Fort) that played completely different from the one that he was used to playing with and with which he won 2 consecutive US Opens? That would make zero sense.

I owned both the Maxply Fort and the JK Pro Staff so I know how differently they played. I played great with the Maxply but it was very difficult to control volleys or put away volleys due to the very flexible hoop. The JK Pro Staff, OTOH, had a much stiffer hoop so it was much better for volleying. They were completely different frames so I find it very hard to believe that anyone (including McEnroe) could volley so well with the JKPS and then turn around and volley just as well with the Maxply so quickly as the feel and control on volleys was night and day difference, and McEnroe's net game was based on feel.

I have still own to this day Maxply Fort, JK Pro Staff, Maxply Fort Graphite, and the Maxply McEnroe. There is NO Graphite inlay in his frame. He played with a standard Maxply Fort that was customized to his specs. They had customized the grip shape and the balance of his frames. You also seem to forget that before McEnroe played with the JK Pro Staff he played with the Maxply Fort. Also the Maxply Fort Graphite did not have the very thick shoulders of the Maxply Fort. I also own the 1981 article where McEnroe is interviewed about the Maxply Fort and the development of the Maxply McEnroe. They go into great detail about how the Maxply Fort was customized for McEnroe.

BreakPoint 09-02-2013 09:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by vsbabolat (Post 7714121)
I have still own to this day Maxply Fort, JK Pro Staff, Maxply Fort Graphite, and the Maxply McEnroe. There is NO Graphite inlay in his frame. He played with a standard Maxply Fort that was customized to his specs. They had customized the grip shape and the balance of his frames. You also seem to forget that before McEnroe played with the JK Pro Staff he played with the Maxply Fort. Also the Maxply Fort Graphite did not have the very thick shoulders of the Maxply Fort. I also own the 1981 article where McEnroe is interviewed about the Maxply Fort and the development of the Maxply McEnroe. They go into great detail about how the Maxply Fort was customized for McEnroe.

Yes, I know that McEnroe used a Maxply Fort as a junior. However, he had used the JK Pro Staff for at least 5 or 6 years prior to switching back to the Maxply Fort in 1981 so he had played all of his pro career up until that time with the JKPS, so I'm sure he had gotten very used to the feel and how it played, especially on volleys, which was the basis of his game.

So why can't part of the customization for McEnroe have included stiffening the hoop, like with a graphite inlay? It wouldn't be that hard to hide that thin band of graphite with some wood stain or paint. Heck, they hide much, much more than that with paintjobs these days, and even back then, Laver was able to paint a Maxply Fort to look like an aluminum Chemold racquet! :shock: If you can do that, you can paintjob just about anything. :)

Oh, and I also own the Maxply McEnroe and it has a much stiffer hoop than the Maxply Fort, which is another reason why I think Dunlop stiffened up the hoop of the Maxply Fort for McEnroe.


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