Best items you found at thrift stores (Goodwill)?

dak95_00

Hall of Fame
My coworker is 55. He lost a baseball glove when he was 12 y/o at a tournament in Cleveland, Ohio. Yesterday his mother found the glove at a Goodwill store in Florida. She recognized it because his signature was still on it.

How amazing is that story???
 

mclee025

Rookie
I found a Head TXP professional yesterday in great shape. A bit out of the loop, I didn't know what to make of it at first, but it had the cap grommets from Head Pro Tours and PC600/Prestige's so I knew it was special so I nabbed it. When I got it home and did research on the web, I finally vaguely remembered reading about this racquet in the PC600/Prestige threads from years ago. It's what the PC600/Prestige's evolved from, and may be a decent collector's racquet because of it's heritage. I found it also hits nice. It's now my best find for the year. :)

My previous best find for the year has been a Puma Becker Pro.
 

vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
I found a Head TXP professional yesterday in great shape. A bit out of the loop, I didn't know what to make of it at first, but it had the cap grommets from Head Pro Tours and PC600/Prestige's so I knew it was special so I nabbed it. When I got it home and did research on the web, I finally vaguely remembered reading about this racquet in the PC600/Prestige threads from years ago. It's what the PC600/Prestige's evolved from, and may be a decent collector's racquet because of it's heritage. I found it also hits nice. It's now my best find for the year. :)

My previous best find for the year has been a Puma Becker Pro.
The TXP is the exact same mold and layup as the Prestige Pro/Classic. Only the paint is different
 

dak95_00

Hall of Fame
My coworker is 55. He lost a baseball glove when he was 12 y/o at a tournament in Cleveland, Ohio. Yesterday his mother found the glove at a Goodwill store in Florida. She recognized it because his signature was still on it.

How amazing is that story???
It made the news.
https://www.nbc4i.com/news/u-s-world/ohio-woman-finds-son-s-lost-baseball-glove-at-florida-goodwill-store-after-40-years/1411432891

It makes me think I should’ve been on the news when I bought Gabriella Sabatini’s racquet a few years back.
 

Henry Hub

Rookie
After going cold turkey for a grand total of 10 days, I stumbled upon (in truth, after a manhunt that would have humbled Tommy Lee Jones) a bit of a mixed bag for £20 all in:



Wilson Avenger - I already have the light grey and burgundy version which volleys like a scalpel, so looking forward to venturing to the net with this one.



Pro Supex Tour Pro. Don’t know much about this one - it seems to be a contemporary of the early APDs and it supposedly weighs 330g or so. Having had a quick hit, it felt significantly more lightweight than that. Not a comfortable racket by any means.



Babolat Aero Strike. Never even heard of this version before and after a quick hit, I can see why. It’s 285g and feels terribly insubstantial considering both the Aero and Strike lines are referenced in the model name. I have optimistically decided that it’s a platform racket (aka a rank disaster in production stock form) so I will report back after having at it with the lead tape and blu-tac...



Finally, found this PSC 25th anniversary for £7. I need to get its specs to see how it compares to the older ones in my collection but it’s the only one I have with the 18x20 string pattern. This seems to inject a small element of control into what is otherwise an absolute beast of a racket.
 

Sarcastic

Rookie
Picked up a PS 85 St. Vincent off of a Facebook ad for $10. Used condition but still amazing to hit with. I was just hitting some slice backhands alone when the high school team players on the next court asked me what frame I was using. They said that it sounded different than any racquet they had heard before. I handed it to the better player and he was amazed at how head heavy it was. I offed to let him have a hit but he declined. The other player wanted it badly. His eyes lit up when he hit a solid forehand that was flatter than his usual extreme topspin. He hit a few more and handed it back saying if it wasn’t so heavy it would be fun to play a set with it. I always seem to have people on adjacent courts curious about the “old” racquet I’m hitting with.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

coachrick

Hall of Fame
$17.50 not a mark on it. Patent date is 1979. I didnt know they made a Prince Graphite before the mid 1980's
If I am seeing it correctly, you have a grommetless model...definitely well before the mid-80s. I have a couple as well...cover weighs a ton!
My grommetless Graphite has a 1977 patent date...I'm pretty sure we were selling them that year or early '78.
 

Plainsman83

New User
I started playing with the grommetless POG in 1980. By the mid-80's it just wasn't the same racquet (as many have mentioned here before). Great that this one came with the cover since you never see them anymore.
 

BigLarry

New User
Plainsman83: How do you mean it wasnt the same by the mid 80's? Worse or better? Here is todays bargain from goodwill mission. Hardly a mark on either of them. The Wilson Extra was the racket that I used as a freshman in H.S.
 

BigLarry

New User
If I am seeing it correctly, you have a grommetless model...definitely well before the mid-80s. I have a couple as well...cover weighs a ton!
My grommetless Graphite has a 1977 patent date...I'm pretty sure we were selling them that year or early '78.
Coach were the early ones good rackets in your opinion? How did they change thru the 1980's? thanks
 
They added plastic grommets to the frame. Just played different. I'd never seen the Wilson Sting 2. The original Sting was black and blue. It was a bad attempt to compete with the Prince Graphite. Their first ones didn't have grommets either.
 

BigLarry

New User
They added plastic grommets to the frame. Just played different. I'd never seen the Wilson Sting 2. The original Sting was black and blue. It was a bad attempt to compete with the Prince Graphite. Their first ones didn't have grommets either.
Yes this clearly looks similar to the Prince OS graphite. I had never seen one either. It was like $4.99 I had to buy it. lol
 

coachrick

Hall of Fame
Coach were the early ones good rackets in your opinion? How did they change thru the 1980's? thanks
I'm not qualified to speak about the changes to the original Graphite; but the very early ones tended to flatten at the top of the hoop, owing in part(s) to the high tensions, stringing machines of the day and I believe an inherent weakness in the top of the hoop resulting from weight and balance concerns during production. With conventional strings of the day, many felt like it hit like a balloon. Apologies to those who really like(d) the grommetless Graphite.

I didn't think the original Sting was terrible(they both chipped like crazy when dinged), especially for the price at Ellman's or Richway in Atlanta !(No stringing at either of those stores, so our shop got in MANY frames bought from them and strung by ME !)

I have one of each if anyone is looking to try a comparison test(Pro Blend in the Prince!!!)
 

BigLarry

New User
I'm not qualified to speak about the changes to the original Graphite; but the very early ones tended to flatten at the top of the hoop, owing in part(s) to the high tensions, stringing machines of the day and I believe an inherent weakness in the top of the hoop resulting from weight and balance concerns during production. With conventional strings of the day, many felt like it hit like a balloon. Apologies to those who really like(d) the grommetless Graphite.

I didn't think the original Sting was terrible(they both chipped like crazy when dinged), especially for the price at Ellman's or Richway in Atlanta !(No stringing at either of those stores, so our shop got in MANY frames bought from them and strung by ME !)

I have one of each if anyone is looking to try a comparison test(Pro Blend in the Prince!!!)
Thanks Coachrick. A guy at Tennis warehouse told me to try stringing my Prince with this string at 55 to 60 pounds. The racket says 72 to 80 lbs. ?? Wonder why there is so much difference in the string pounds?
 

Henry Hub

Rookie
Hammer 5.5 for £4. 4 strings broke on the second ball so I’ve no idea how it plays - it’s fairly lightweight and head heavy so it may need to stack on a bit of weight in the handle.

Fischer Vacuum Pro Mid Plus for £2.50. This seems to be a later Taiwanese fishnet version unless I’m misreading the threads on these rackets. Is this the same as the Vacuum Pro 98 or is that a different version again? 372g and 12HL - should be an interesting hit...
 

retrowagen

Hall of Fame
Fischer Vacuum Pro Mid Plus for £2.50. This seems to be a later Taiwanese fishnet version unless I’m misreading the threads on these rackets. Is this the same as the Vacuum Pro 98 or is that a different version again? 372g and 12HL - should be an interesting hit...
Confusing Fischer nomenclature—this is a completely different mould than the Vacuum Pro Classic 98. Your Vacuum Pro was the first version of the line which evolved (in its paintjobs) to the Pro Number 1, famously used by Yevgeny Kafelnikov, and more latterly was seen under Tecnifibre and Pacific war paint.
 

Henry Hub

Rookie
Thanks for the info - Fischer don’t make it easy do they? Interesting about who used it /its successors - if the frame ever cracks, I’ll see it off in the style of Cyprus’s favourite son and try to smash the racket down into its constituent protons.
 

Plainsman83

New User
Once again I made my monthly visit to the Goodwill next to my barber and they had a Pro Kennex Power Ace 95 wide body for the usual $5.99. It was a pretty uninspiring looking thing so I left it, but searching this thread I didn't see anything about this particular frame. I am guessing it is a low end model based on the appearance and general "hand feel". Any insight just for my personal knowledge base?
 

Plainsman83

New User
Once again I made my monthly visit to the Goodwill next to my barber and they had a Pro Kennex Power Ace 95 wide body for the usual $5.99. It was a pretty uninspiring looking thing so I left it, but searching this thread I didn't see anything about this particular frame. I am guessing it is a low end model based on the appearance and general "hand feel". Any insight just for my personal knowledge base?
Never mind, I guess the search engine here is sensitive to your search terms so I found some old threads. Seems that the Power Ace was the "equivalent" to the aluminum Prince Pro.
 

Tar Heel Tennis

Professional
just picked up a 'like new' Jack Kramer Autograph woodie. This one has black lettering. Anyone know the difference between this black version and the more recognizable red letter version?
 

Tar Heel Tennis

Professional
@ Big Larry - you did not pay too much - the Vilas is an exceptional racket, and to find one in near new condition is a real gem! go enjoy hitting with it!
 

BigLarry

New User
@ Big Larry - you did not pay too much - the Vilas is an exceptional racket, and to find one in near new condition is a real gem! go enjoy hitting with it!
Thank you for the kind words. I had not seen one of these since the mid 1980's I remember a girl that was undefeated in H.S. play in Southern Maryland when I was playing H.S tennis used one of these Head Vilas rackets. She would always say she was sorry when she beat us guys. I expected to hear her playing at the US Open one day but I guess not.
 

PBODY99

Legend
No Racquets, but found this book at Goodwill for 50 cents. Almost passed on it, till I opened the cover to discover a signature! I'm hoping it's Bud's real signature. Anyone care to verify?
I have a copy Bud signed for me at the US Open. Looks legit. Enjoy, it is a great read.
 

BigLarry

New User
I’ve been looking for one of these for a long time, and today a friend picked this up for me at a Goodwill “Bin” location. $2.50 a pound. What a crazy long grip!
Not a scratch on it.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I have one like that with the long grip that I bought new in H.S. I left it in the trunk of my car in the heat of the summer and it warped badly. I still have it though I dont know why. I also have one I bought recently that has a short grip on it.
 

jonestim

Hall of Fame
Cruising the Facebook Marketplace I just came across a PT280 listed as a "racquetball racquet in new condition" for $10. Pics show the stencil ink still on it. Picking it up in an hour.

She also has a Hyper Hammer 5.3 and a 660 Atlantis, both in new condition. Leaving those.

Edit: 4 5/8 in good shape. She said it had been used as a prop so while the stringed Is new there are a few scrapes on the head guard and tiny scratching around the head.

 
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Saul Goode

Semi-Pro
Cruising the Facebook Marketplace I just came across a PT280 listed as a "racquetball racquet in new condition" for $10. Pics show the stencil ink still on it. Picking it up in an hour.

She also has a Hyper Hammer 5.3 and a 660 Atlantis, both in new condition. Leaving those.



I hate you
 

Plainsman83

New User
Does anyone else think that the last three "finds" on this thread are incredible? The PT280 is to this day comparable in performance to most current frames. The Vilas is a classic as is the Donnay Borg to those of us of a certain age. Take care of them my friends!
 

Plainsman83

New User
Hammer 5.5 for £4. 4 strings broke on the second ball so I’ve no idea how it plays - it’s fairly lightweight and head heavy so it may need to stack on a bit of weight in the handle.

Fischer Vacuum Pro Mid Plus for £2.50. This seems to be a later Taiwanese fishnet version unless I’m misreading the threads on these rackets. Is this the same as the Vacuum Pro 98 or is that a different version again? 372g and 12HL - should be an interesting hit...
Henry:

My dear friend and doubles partner of close to twenty years has played with the Hammer 5.5 continuously since it was current. He refuses to switch and probably has 20 of them stockpiled. He is also ranked No. 1 in our region in the 50 and over singles. It plays well for him but I can't hit a ball with it. I am a big hitter and he plays like Wilander. String it back up and try it and have fun. I love your posts.
 

RDM

Rookie
I think I might be cured of the Charity Shop visitations. I saw one of these today and passed on it despite my curiosity.
 

frinton

Professional
I think I might be cured of the Charity Shop visitations. I saw one of these today and passed on it despite my curiosity.
that looks like a serious contender for ugliest frame ever... I would have bought it anyway... how would this thing play?
 

vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
Cruising the Facebook Marketplace I just came across a PT280 listed as a "racquetball racquet in new condition" for $10. Pics show the stencil ink still on it. Picking it up in an hour.

She also has a Hyper Hammer 5.3 and a 660 Atlantis, both in new condition. Leaving those.

Edit: 4 5/8 in good shape. She said it had been used as a prop so while the stringed Is new there are a few scrapes on the head guard and tiny scratching around the head.

That’s awesome! Great find! Is it made in Austria?
 

jonestim

Hall of Fame
Designed.

Also, a bit lighter than the last one I had. It was mid 330s strung. I put on a leather grip and OG and it is still only 348g.
 

BigLarry

New User
new grabon???? That's a heck of a tie-off tail at the top knot ;) Not one I'm familiar with. Is there a "Made in..." sticker?
Coach it says "Designed and made in Italy" It feels surprisingly good balance wise . Have not hit lately as they are resurfacing my local court and are taking their time.
 

coachrick

Hall of Fame
Coach it says "Designed and made in Italy" It feels surprisingly good balance wise . Have not hit lately as they are resurfacing my local court and are taking their time.
Very interesting! A composite made in Italy? Very interesting. Is that a leather grip...hard to tell from the pic. No bumper? All very interesting.
 

BigLarry

New User
Very interesting! A composite made in Italy? Very interesting. Is that a leather grip...hard to tell from the pic. No bumper? All very interesting.
Yes leather grip. Says made of boron/graphite fibers & rubber foam core. Absorbs all vibrations. Has a Italian flag on the side. No bumper
 

Sanglier

Semi-Pro
Bonny is the house brand of a Taiwanese maker that specialized in producing unusual designs for their clients around the world. They even subcontracted for ProKennex at one point. As I previously mentioned in the one and only Bonny-specific thread on this forum, Bonny appears to have made graphite racquets for the Italian brand Maxima in the early to mid '80s, among others, so they did have some Italian ties (of unknown significance), which they hyped on their other frames of that period as well. However, I find it extremely intriguing that this particular Bonny claims to be actually made in Italy (instead of just "Designed in Italy" as the rest of them claim to be). That would be like finding a Chinese-branded ANYTHING that claims to be made in the US or Europe today!

The elastomer foam core was part of Kunnan's manufacturing method, he even obtained a US patent for it in 1981. Given the business ties between Bonny and Kunnan, it is not a huge surprise that Bonny adopted it as well.

Your photo seems to be from a listing that had been languishing on Fleabay forever. If it is indeed the same racquet, after you receive it, could you post some additional photos of the details, especially the "Made in Italy" wording? The seller is a good guy, from whom I had bought before, but I have a feeling that he may not have read the small print very carefully in this case.
 

retrowagen

Hall of Fame
Well, not from a thrift store, but yesterday on my travels, I happened to swing by a flea market at a small town in the mountains of Northern California. Not expecting much, at all, I was surprised to see a seller with a newer Yonex racquet bag and an older Prince Composite (the pre-bumper 110). What happened next went like this:

“Hey, how much for the old racquet here?” “Oh, you interested in tennis? Well, come look at this...” [opens steamer trunk]

The steamer trunk was full of 80’s and 90’s graphite composites, many with original covers, most little used, most fitted with significant quantities of added lead strips, and all grip size 5. The seller explained that a friend of his, a former teaching pro who went through racquets like water, had these racquets from new and asked his friend (the seller) to get rid of them.

I bought the Prince Comp, a CTS Precision 90, a Prince Graphite Pro 90, a Yonex Super RQ 500, a Volkl V1 Hot Spot, a C9 Hot Spot, and a C9 Classic... for $2 each. He threw in the Yonex bag to sweeten (???!!!) the deal.

I passed on a perfect Spectrum Comp 110, a couple other late 80’s double-bridged Prince 110’s, and a pair of Wavex frames. (If someone needs one, let me know, I’ll go back next week).
 
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