Dunlop Force 98 Tour

Interesting new racquet from Dunlop. I used play with the M-Fil 300s and then the Aerogel 300s back in the day, so was intrigued as to what their modern '98' offering played like.







 
Spent a couple of days hitting with it strung with the stock multifilament string 'Dunlop Silk'. Fast feeling racquet and pretty solid for it's weight. The string is quite unusual. Quite firm and low powered for a multifilment but I don't mind that. The racquet itself is quite firm feeling, but there's a lovely feel through the frame with that string. Just on the right side of firm plushness. Volleys, drop shots, drop volleys, low pick ups - basically any sort of touch shot felt lovely with that racquet / string combination.

After a couple of days of hitting with it, I thought I'd try it with a leather grip to see how that changed things. This is where things started to get very intriguing.....
 
First thing to note was the stock grip 'Viper Dry'. It's one of those thin and light grips that you get on Yonexes, and like the stock Yonex grips, weighs about 12g.

After discarding the grip (which left a ton of difficult to remove gluey residue on the pallet), I noticed that the pallet has a clear perspex window towards the top of the handle that reveals two white rods in the handle and the pallet is actually in two pieces, held together by the rods and the clear perspex parts.







I couldn't quite get the angle of the camera right to show it but there's actually a gap of about 1mm between the upper and lower parts of the handle. If you look through it you can see the floor!

 
I thought it was rather weird but then I remembered that back in the day Dunlop had a handle suspension system in their Dunlop Revelation Tour Pro racquets that contained carbon rods. They called the system ISIS and ACS. Those were amazing feel frames. Plush and buttery but with a connected feel.

I don't normally pay attention to modern racquet 'technology' as a lot of seems to be marketing, but I had a closer look at the racquet and lo and behold, there was an 'ISIS-X' logo on the frame.....

 
The pallet is very long (two handers can rejoice). Not that it really matters but the leather grip that I pulled off my 6.1 was slightly short, which should give you an idea of the handle length of this racquet.

 
After hitting with the racquet with the leather grip for a couple of hours, I decided to restring it with a poly to see how that played.

More surprises during. Weaving the strings through the grommets was silky smooth - much, much smoother than usual. Stringing was just a breeze and faster than usual. I had a closer look and the grommets on the inside of the frame point North/South, East/West. The grommets that I'm used to eg. 6.1 grommets, point at very slightly different angles as they go round the curvature of the frame. Did some Googling which came up with the following from the Dunlop site:-





I don't think it makes much difference to the way the racquet plays but it certainly makes stringing easier.
 
It didn't seem to be iDapt to me but I could be wrong.
Lol this guys entire post count is this thread...

Maybe he'll stop long enough to answer.
It takes ages uploading those pictures.. :)

I did wonder if it was iDapt but I don't think it is. I think it uses the same mold from the iDapt 98 frame for the hoop but the grommets are different, and the handle is very different with those rods and clear perspex parts. I can't see any way that you can't take it apart like iDapt - it all seems to be fused together.
 

canuckfan

Semi-Pro
Those specs are looking pretty good. Sort of like a cross between the 400 tour and 500 tour with a 98 sq in head. Very interesting.
 

wolfinsignia

New User
if this plays anything like the idapt 98 with red/soft shock sleeve then i am interested, elsewise can't say that i care for it.
 
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Despite hoping for great things, I'm afraid to say that I didn't like it :-/

I initially played a few doubles sets with it in stock form against 3 old guys. My team won every set 6-0 or 6-1, despite us rotating partners, so I was hoping for great things. The racquet was light and fast feeling with nice feel (with the stock Dunlop silk string).

I strung it up with poly (it seems to string up VERY tight for some reason - so bear that in mind), and then went hitting with some 4.5s whom I normally have pretty close games with. The racquet just felt too light and underpowered against bigger hitters. If I could describe how it plays as succinctly as possible, I'd say "Babolat Lite" - fairly stiff/firm, slightly hollow feeling but too light for my game (though my normal racquet is a 6.1).
 

JackB1

G.O.A.T.
I really like the Force 98, so I hope this is similar. But the Force98 was 300 grams and this one is 310.

Anyone know the beam, balance and sw specs?

Will this racquet be released in the US? To the op...how did you get this before anyone else?
 

Pilot78

New User
Hi,

the specs are closer than you expect:

http://www.tenniswarehouse-europe.com/catpage-DUNLOPRAC.html

IDapt series is only available in the USA. Basically same rackets but you can customize them as we all know.

Force Series should be available in the rest of the world (at least in Europe as far as I know).

Funny how Dunlop has not been able to put the new racket lineup to their website as the rackets have been to market for several months already. Also there was a total lack of pre-launch marketing.

Force series brings back the known ISIS-X shock absorb system and updated technologies for previous ones like AeroSkin etc.

The bottom line is that the rackets gives you quite much power and I would suggest you not to try with factory strings - re-stringing to poly (and maybe soft poly like Dunlop Black Widow) changes the racket feel much much better! Try it!
 
I still want to know where this racquet is being found?

European release? Dunlop Australia?

Middle Hand where are you?
Sorry for the delay in replying - I got it from one of the coaches at my club, so I had to ask him where he got it from. He said he got it from the Dunlop rep, so I asked him to ask the Dunlop rep where he got it from but I haven't had a reply.
 
I wonder if Dunlop found people were interested in the spec/cosmetic/design of the iDapt racquets but were turned off when they learned what made them iDapt, i.e. being bolted together. Hence Dunlop is now releasing the more popular configurations in a more traditional one-piece construction.
 

Pilot78

New User
Not sure if he was joking but the same coach said that there's also new range coming out with copper wires(?) in them.
Hi,

actually, the copper wire rackets were released to the German market already late 2013 (exclusive for sporting goods chain called Intersport).

The lineup (called Natural Tennis) have been designed for Dunlop by ex-pro player, tennisracket expert and ex-Roger Federer's racket stringer/tuner, Mr. Frank Messerer.

The series consists of lineup of rackets, strings (hybrid), bags and grips.

They are available for sale now in Tennis Warehouse Europe under Revolution Rackets (http://www.tenniswarehouse-europe.com/catpage-DUNLOPRAC.html). The only considerable rackets in this series are R3.0 and R5.0. Especially R3.0 is really good.

You may want read more and if you don't speak german, use some of the online translators:
http://www.naturaltennis.de/

A bit better info (with working pic links) is in dutch:
http://www.dunloptennis.nl/naturaltennis/index.html
 

JackB1

G.O.A.T.
Sorry for the delay in replying - I got it from one of the coaches at my club, so I had to ask him where he got it from. He said he got it from the Dunlop rep, so I asked him to ask the Dunlop rep where he got it from but I haven't had a reply.
Are u in the US?

I asked a local Dunlop rep and he knew nothing about the Force 98 Tour.

Doesn't appear like this will be available in the US and I am not willing to pay for overseas shipping and buy one from TW Europe.
 

tom4ny

Professional
I do not believe that the Force series is coming to the USA. My understanding is that there will be an update to the current line with new cosmetics sometime this year.
 

downs_chris

Professional
134 euros for the frame...24 for shipping...

158 euros to USD = $168

am i reading this right? if you get two frames it's 125 euros each (or $132 each)...aka not bad :)

i just ordered a pair of them after i just demo'ed and loved the idapt 98...i want to see how this one compares...
 

JackB1

G.O.A.T.
134 euros for the frame...24 for shipping...

158 euros to USD = $168

am i reading this right? if you get two frames it's 125 euros each (or $132 each)...aka not bad :)

i just ordered a pair of them after i just demo'ed and loved the idapt 98...i want to see how this one compares...
I also loved the iDapt 98 and would be very interested in a conventional model of it. If you end up not wanting to keep one, please drop me a line. I am pretty close to you also, for ease of shipping.
 

McLovin

Legend
If you end up not wanting to keep one, please drop me a line. I am pretty close to you also, for ease of shipping.
Trust me when I say this: Expect an e-mail in ~ 3 weeks.

Seriously.

In the time I've known Mr Downs, he's switched frames pretty much every 3-4 weeks. However, lately he's been flipping between the Yonex Ai100, then something else (Blade 16x19), then Yonex, then something else (PS97), then back to Yonex...
 

downs_chris

Professional
I see what you did there...haha, i'll admit i have a racquet problem...the dunlop idapt frames REALLY impressed me though...
 

JackB1

G.O.A.T.
Trust me when I say this: Expect an e-mail in ~ 3 weeks.

Seriously.

In the time I've known Mr Downs, he's switched frames pretty much every 3-4 weeks. However, lately he's been flipping between the Yonex Ai100, then something else (Blade 16x19), then Yonex, then something else (PS97), then back to Yonex...
Yeah....I don't get it :)
 

McLovin

Legend
I also loved the iDapt 98 and would be very interested in a conventional model of it. If you end up not wanting to keep one, please drop me a line. I am pretty close to you also, for ease of shipping.
So...he's had them for all of 3 days. Has he e-mailed you yet?
 

JackB1

G.O.A.T.
So...he's had them for all of 3 days. Has he e-mailed you yet?
Yes...today as a matter of fact :)

I'm sure Chris will post his thoughts soon, but long story short, he said they were too whippy feeling for him. He said the iDapts felt more weighty in the hoop. Just sounded like these played and felt totally different from the iDapt Force 98s, which is unfortunate. I was looking for a "permanent" version of the iDapt Force 98 and it sounds like Dunlop made some changes with these models.
 
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