Extending a Gravity Pro

McLovin

Legend
I’ve not, but I’ve extended an Extreme Tour, which thanks to Head and their pallets, is the same process:
  1. Get an “uncut” replacement pallet (easily acquired from a European retailer)
  2. Remove the old pallet
  3. Attach the new one
  4. Cut to desired length
  5. Backfill empty space with balsa wood or wood dowel
  6. Fill in any space between dowel and pallet with silicone
  7. Reattach butt cap using Epoxy
The last step is the most important. I stapled the butt cap my first 3 tries, and every time the pallet cracked after an hour of hitting. Tried Epoxy the last attempt, and it’s still going strong after a month.
 

pico

Professional
I’ve not, but I’ve extended an Extreme Tour, which thanks to Head and their pallets, is the same process:
  1. Get an “uncut” replacement pallet (easily acquired from a European retailer)
  2. Remove the old pallet
  3. Attach the new one
  4. Cut to desired length
  5. Backfill empty space with balsa wood or wood dowel
  6. Fill in any space between dowel and pallet with silicone
  7. Reattach butt cap using Epoxy
The last step is the most important. I stapled the butt cap my first 3 tries, and every time the pallet cracked after an hour of hitting. Tried Epoxy the last attempt, and it’s still going strong after a month.
Thank you. I created the wood extension piece. I was going to epoxy that to the end of my racquet. That is ok? Also, can I use the old butt cap? It just about contains the extended piece.
 
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pico

Professional
Here is a pic showing the end of my racquet and the extension piece is on the table. I inserted wood into my handle end so as to have something more to bond to.

 

McLovin

Legend
Thank you. I created the wood extension piece. I was going to epoxy that to the end of my racquet. That is ok? Also, can I use the old pallet? It just about contains the extended piece.
You can try, but I don’t know how much stress the epoxy can take. Worst case scenario is you try and it doesn’t hold. Then you buy an uncut pallet and go that route.

By saying you want to use the old pallet…are you asking about removing it, the reattaching it, but offsetting it by 1/2”? I guess it’s possible, but if you’ve never removed one before…well, let’s just say I ruined 4 before I got the hang of it.
 

Bambooman

Professional
You can do a better job with a few pieces of woven carbon sleeving added onto a shaped balsa or foam core inserted in the hole or holes in the original handle. It's a bit more integrated then.

The above method obviously works but you may be happier knowing that your actual handle structure is continuous rather than having a potential weak spot.

I always shape the foam core so that there is a flared section mimicking a butt cap and just use that instead of putting the old one back on.

I shave about two inches of the pallet foam off to the bare carbon and add the extension and then use Gorilla glue to blend the remaining pallet onto the added section. It can be shaped after it foams up and cures.
 

pico

Professional
Just finished this up. I epoxy glued the wood extension to the end of the racquet, put the butt cap over and stapled it. Hoping this holds. The racquet weights at 341g with a length of 27.5 inches. Curious to what the swingweight is.
 

WYK

Hall of Fame
Was there no lead under the pallet, OP? Or does it have one of those weighted buttcaps?
 

pico

Professional
great work @pico
Don't want to hijack your thread - also just recently lengthened two racquets - but a Yonex C-Core 98 from 27 inches to 28.35 inches.
Swing weight was originally 273.8 and now 325.6 SW.
In picture 2 you can see how the handle is constructed inside.
For stability, the hairpin was exposed to 60mm and fully glued with 2-K glue.
To mimic the Yonex look, the 3-D material was stained to green.
The customer is just picking these up today, so I can't say how he likes it yet.

Yonex V-Core 98 — ImgBB (ibb.co)
Looks like Yonex racquets are easier to extend compared to HEAD since they don't use pallets? I don't have access to a 3D printer though. I did think abt extending my SV 95.
 

pico

Professional
Actually, it does not matter what the design of the handle.
Here is an example of what I did a good 10 years ago.
Extension by + 15mm with a wooden core.

Head MG Extension — ImgBB (ibb.co)
That is really awesome! I guess what I meant is that with the HEAD racquets, you have the step of needing to remove the pallet. I imagine then you put on a new one that is longer? With the YONEX racquets, since there are no pallets involved, that step is removed? But that hand crafted wood extension of yours is top-notch!!!!
 

Hagberg

New User
I have extended both Gravity Pro and Tour and been playing systematically with them for about 6 months now.
Was testing a lot of racquets and noticed a big advantage with 28" frames for my style of playing. However, I couldn't stay away from the addicting buttery feel of the GP so I kept coming back to it despite the difference in power compared to the 28" frames I liked.

So I went for it and extended a GP to 28". This was done with epoxy/micro balloons molded together with the hairpin for best structural integrity. I made some air canals to reduce weight and also an indentation below the trap door so the stock trap door with the 5g weight would fit. Strung weight was slightly above 344 grams and swing weight through the roof. Tried for a while but couldn't handle it so I started cutting down 2 mm at a time until I reached a length and swing weight that worked. This happened to be 27.5". When I settled on 27.5, I extended the other GP and GT frames I had to the same length. I saved one GP at stock length for reference. I also swapped the trapdoor between GP and GT to even out the weights. -5g on the GPs and +5g on the Tours.

Swing weight is higher than anything one can buy except perhaps the 29" Gamma RZR Bubba. This requires some systematic physical maintenance for your upper body. However, the reward is fantastic. I now feel I have a serious power weapon AND full control and superb feel. Normal length racquets feel anemic and I have gotten fully used to this. I'm thinking of trying even longer again to see if it's now possible to handle for me. If Hsieh Sue-Wei can handle 29", why not me... At least, that was my thinking when I started. Optimally, one would want a more customizable pro stock frame as donor frame to keep swing weight under control.

Btw. Basilashvili uses almost the same recipe (27.4" I think I read here somewhere). I almost purchased one of his frames on E-bay but the grip was L4 and the price not worth it.
 
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