Looking for a new racquet that feels like older racquets

Just looking for some help getting pointed in the right direction. I’m getting back into tennis after a 10+ year hiatus. I have an old Pro Kennex Copper Ace and I love the feel of it, but the head size is too small for me, so I’m shopping for a newer racquet with similar feel but a bigger head size.

Given that I like this racquet, what kinds of newer racquets should I be looking at? I'm not sure how to navigate characteristics like stiffness/power/control, etc. so I'm hoping to use this as kind of a starting point.

Thanks!
 
Just looking for some help getting pointed in the right direction. I’m getting back into tennis after a 10+ year hiatus. I have an old Pro Kennex Copper Ace and I love the feel of it, but the head size is too small for me, so I’m shopping for a newer racquet with similar feel but a bigger head size.

Given that I like this racquet, what kinds of newer racquets should I be looking at? I'm not sure how to navigate characteristics like stiffness/power/control, etc. so I'm hoping to use this as kind of a starting point.

Thanks!
I would start with the Prince Phantom 93P. (If that’s still a little too small, the Phantom Pro 100 and Phantom Pro 100P.) very similar to racquets from that era, but very modern and playable.

I was in your position about a year and several dozen racquets ago. I was coming back to tennis after a 15 year break that followed a 20 year break. This forum has helped me tremendously, taught me almost everything I know!

One thing I would do differently is focus more on strings than frames. You can change the performance of a racquet a great deal with different strings and different tensions. I found a racquet I liked. Bought 2. Thought I was done. Instead of being satusfied, I found a racquet I liked better. Bought that. Then found one I liked better. Bought 3. Then I realized frames from the 80’s are actually amazing, and started trawling thrift stores for gems of the past. Including 2 Coper Aces - GREAT frame. Then I found the Phantoms. And now I am finally experimenting with different strings to find the perfect Phantom setup.


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Prince Phantom 93P. Demo both 14x18 and 18x20. One offers easier access to spin and the other offers easier access to control. Both play like 95's but have that classic midsize feel and balance. Both are arm friendly much like Prokennex.
Yeah, what he said. Much more concise than me.

Oh, should ask - is your copper Ace the older gunmetal colored one with the copper writing on it? Or the newer green one?

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Or just do what I do: go on E-B-A-Y and pick up cheap classics that sound like they match up well specs-wise. I’ve gotten 5 racquets for less than half the asking price of a new Wilson clash, 3 of which I would feel comfortable bringing into a match.


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Yeah, what he said. Much more concise than me.

Oh, should ask - is your copper Ace the older gunmetal colored one with the copper writing on it? Or the newer green one?

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Yeah it's the dark gray one with copper writing on it. Feels so great when I hit the sweet spot.... that's just a big IF at the moment :)

Much thanks for all of the input! I'll take a look at that prince and now I have at least something to start with. So I take it this is a style of racquet that's often referred to as a "player's racquet"? Or is that a whole different thing?
 

Irvin

Talk Tennis Guru
I would start going to a shop that has an RDC and find out the specs of the racket you like first. Then use the racket finder to identify those rackets with the closest specs. That racket as I recall was very flexible and chances are you won’t find one that flexible any more.
 

Adm

Rookie
Just looking for some help getting pointed in the right direction. I’m getting back into tennis after a 10+ year hiatus. I have an old Pro Kennex Copper Ace and I love the feel of it, but the head size is too small for me, so I’m shopping for a newer racquet with similar feel but a bigger head size.

Given that I like this racquet, what kinds of newer racquets should I be looking at? I'm not sure how to navigate characteristics like stiffness/power/control, etc. so I'm hoping to use this as kind of a starting point.

Thanks!

Your racquet may be old but it has a distinct feeling. I would not choose a Prince Phantom or most of the new Donnays since you are looking something of similar feeling but with bigger head, and a little more modern style (but I guess not too modern). There is also a Volkl V Sense model which can really replicate well enough your racquet IF customized properly and IF gut is is in the mains and IF specific stringing method is used (too many ifs).

Therefore I would suggest that you demo Prince Textreme Tour 95 (no need to go the newer model, this one is still on the market and should be on offer in most websites)
 

sansaephanh

Professional
Just looking for some help getting pointed in the right direction. I’m getting back into tennis after a 10+ year hiatus. I have an old Pro Kennex Copper Ace and I love the feel of it, but the head size is too small for me, so I’m shopping for a newer racquet with similar feel but a bigger head size.

Given that I like this racquet, what kinds of newer racquets should I be looking at? I'm not sure how to navigate characteristics like stiffness/power/control, etc. so I'm hoping to use this as kind of a starting point.

Thanks!
Hmm. Wing, is that you? ignore if not lol. I'd say the Dunlop 200 series is a good balance between old school and new school. Very solid feel like the old rackets. The fed sticks generally feel classic. The new Pure Drive tour and the recent pure strike feel really solid too.
 

elkabras

Rookie
I've got some old jewels that I cant manage due the weight....4 Dunlop Muscle Weave 200G, 2 Yonex Rd7, 2 Donnay Pro One Limited Ed. Made in Belgium...old Dunlop Revelation tour...no one of this are worse than new ones, I can swear it

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fuzz nation

G.O.A.T.
I've got some old jewels that I cant manage due the weight....4 Dunlop Muscle Weave 200G, 2 Yonex Rd7, 2 Donnay Pro One Limited Ed. Made in Belgium...old Dunlop Revelation tour...no one of this are worse than new ones, I can swear it

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Holy Dang!!! Your collection has some SERIOUS old-school cred :p
 

max

Legend
OP: give the Volkl C-10 a shot.

FWIW, I took out for hits last fall a Dunlop Revelation Tour Pro that's quite old but hardly used at all: back in the 90s or so, I didn't like the flex. Surprisingly I was pleased with the frame this time!
 
Or just do what I do: go on E-B-A-Y and pick up cheap classics that sound like they match up well specs-wise. I’ve gotten 5 racquets for less than half the asking price of a new Wilson clash, 3 of which I would feel comfortable bringing into a match.


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Was trying to K.I.S.S. (Keep it simple) but here’s my TLDR POST:


Yes, I’ve done this as well. But I think Dart and I were just trying to keep it simple, since you can get overwhelmed really quickly with all the info. Remember, most of us have digested all this over the course of 30+ years, I have had to cram it all into the last year. The 93P is a good starting point if you’re used to an 80’s graphite frame like the Copper Ace. But there are other indeed.

Other options in modern frames if the Phantom doesn’t suit you... Wilson Pro Staff 97 or maybe Blade 98 (or 93 if you’re lucky) or Head Prestige? Help me out here y’all are lore expert than I. I believe these would fall under the sub- heading of “classic players racquets” as they are most like the classic graphite racquets of the 80’s/90’s. There is another sub-category of “modern player’s” frames. I think something like the Babolat Pure strike, the Prince Tour series, or maybe even the Blade 98 would fall into that. Maybe someone else here could get into that category, as I have a more singular focus on the classic/oldies feel.

So yes, I’ve found many Thrift store and auction site bargains, and I came to the realization that modern racquets have very little improvement on racquets from the 80’s. “Improvements” have been mostly lighter, stiffer, and more muted frames. Which aren’t qualities a serious player is usually looking for. The main difference between a vintage player’s frame and a more recent one is size. no one offers an 80-85 sq.in. Racquet anymore, and not many people are asking. The Phantom 93P tries to recapture that old time feeling, (small head, soft flex, thin box beam, dense string pattern) just with a more manageable/modern head size, and a little modern tech thrown in.

But if the OP don’t know what classics to hunt for, where would you even start? And if you’ve already got a Copper Ace you like, why look any further? HA! it can get pretty mind-numbing.

If you have a “Play it Again Sports” or other used sports equipment dealer in your city, you may be able to pick up some bargains.





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fuzz nation

G.O.A.T.
Just looking for some help getting pointed in the right direction. I’m getting back into tennis after a 10+ year hiatus. I have an old Pro Kennex Copper Ace and I love the feel of it, but the head size is too small for me, so I’m shopping for a newer racquet with similar feel but a bigger head size.

Given that I like this racquet, what kinds of newer racquets should I be looking at? I'm not sure how to navigate characteristics like stiffness/power/control, etc. so I'm hoping to use this as kind of a starting point.

Thanks!
Lots of new racquets offered today are on the lighter and stiffer side of the street. I don't much go for that sort of frame myself, probably because I was using wood racquets as a kid and then made the switch to 85" graphite alternatives in high school (back in the early 80's).

The wood racquets probably left a permanent mark on my tennis DNA and I still like equipment with that combo of extra weight and at least moderate softness. Our pal max mentioned the Volkl C-10 above and I've used those racquets off and on for several years myself. They fit the bill for me in terms of offering some old-school vibe, but they also have a 98" head and that seems to be helpful in terms of offering a little free power compared with other soft and heavy alternatives that have smaller head sizes (especially down around 90"-92").

I also very much enjoy another Volkl model - their Organix 10 325g - which I had to lead up a bit to get it feeling comfortably stable through the ball. I also recently got a pair of their V-Sense 10 325g's - the newer version of the same frame. I'll lead these up to the same layout, too. Both the O10's and VS 10's were a little too light and stiff for me before I tuned them at home, but the improvements were fantastic for me and these turned into absolute keepers after I leaded them into shape.

Obviously I'm a fan of a little of the old-school flavor that Volkl still seems to offer even though several of their newer models lean more in the direction of lighter and stiffer designs. Most of Volkls racquets seem to have some vibration dampening capacities in their handles - also a plus.

Another label to consider is Dunlop Srixon. Their heavier and more flexible "player's frame" also has an old-school look to it, at least on paper. I haven't tried these yet myself, but they look pretty cool.
 
I've got some old jewels that I cant manage due the weight....4 Dunlop Muscle Weave 200G, 2 Yonex Rd7, 2 Donnay Pro One Limited Ed. Made in Belgium...old Dunlop Revelation tour...no one of this are worse than new ones, I can swear it

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The irony of my racquet quest over the last year is that I came into my local shop last Feb. knowing nothing, carrying a Dunlop 200GXL Muscle Weave and another Dunlop that I didn’t even know was aluminum, both 95 as.in. They both had old string jobs, but I had theme restring the 200G with whatever was cheap. So I left with syn gut strung at 60 Lbs. and still preferred the feel of dead string job in the heavy 90’s aluminum frame. I just assumed I needed something new and modern, and was gonna go with a 105 or larger frame to cure my shanking disorder. I bought and bought and bought frames new and old until I settled on something that felt as much like that aluminum racquet as I could find. 12 + oz. soft-ish flex, mid-size head - The 93P strung with Poly in the mid-30’s tension range. And the even softer, more flexible Phantom Pro 100. Turns out once you learn to watch the ball, and get some practice to get your form back, head size is less about framing the ball you think.

If someone had just told me to string that 200G at 40 lbs with Volkl Cyclone 17, I would have been perfectly fine, and probably never would have gone on this journey of racquet discovery.


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elkabras

Rookie
Aluminium??? I though is called graphite...kevlar even twaron but aluminium??? Supermarket racquets maybe, but not old goldies like these!

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Aluminium??? I though is called graphite...kevlar even twaron but aluminium??? Supermarket racquets maybe, but not old goldies like these!

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I’m not suggesting the OP buys an aluminum racquet by any means. I was just pointing out that the feel of a 95 sq. In. Flexy racquet with a low-tension string job is what I liked organically, and if I had gone with that instinct when looking for a new frame, I would have saved myself a lot of trouble (and money)

My other racquet of choice, the Phantom Pro 100, has a soft buttery flex I couldn’t describe until I pulled out an old Wood Jack Kramer. Not the same racquet by any stretch, but that kind of flex is really hard to come by these days.

So it’s possible that racquets we’d never use today would have qualities we’re trying to replicate with the ones we have at our disposal.


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elkabras

Rookie
I’m not suggesting the OP buys an aluminum racquet by any means. I was just pointing out that the feel of a 95 sq. In. Flexy racquet with a low-tension string job is what I liked organically, and if I had gone with that instinct when looking for a new frame, I would have saved myself a lot of trouble (and money)

My other racquet of choice, the Phantom Pro 100, has a soft buttery flex I couldn’t describe until I pulled out an old Wood Jack Kramer. Not the same racquet by any stretch, but that kind of flex is really hard to come by these days.

So it’s possible that racquets we’d never use today would have qualities we’re trying to replicate with the ones we have at our disposal.


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Id like to test New Wilson Clash...like Pure Drive but 56 RA....what a weird frame jejjeje

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Id like to test New Wilson Clash...like Pure Drive but 56 RA....what a weird frame jejjeje

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Yep, if you like the flex of the Copper Ace but want to move into the world of new racquets, and you don’t have a lot of other racquets on the brain to cloud your judgement, I would suggest trying the Clash Tour 100 too. It’s definitely worth a demo. Not cheap, but has a satisfaction guarantee.


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elkabras

Rookie
Yep, if you like the flex of the Copper Ace but want to move into the world of new racquets, and you don’t have a lot of other racquets on the brain to cloud your judgement, I would suggest trying the Clash Tour 100 too. It’s definitely worth a demo. Not cheap, but has a satisfaction guarantee.


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I've at least 15 oldies but goldies at home...I'd never pay 230€ for a new Chinese rubish lke that xD

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For reference, I found the specs of the Copper Ace. People in the thread were saying it’s head size was about 88 sq. in. I’ll post a pic of mine against a 93P and maybe others for comparison.

Pro Kennex Copper Ace Spec:
weight: 12.5 oz
flex: 50
Swing Weight: 330
Composition: 60/40 (fiberglass/grahite)
Beam Width: 16 - 16.5mm beam
Pattern: 16x19 pattern
Balance: 8 pt head lite

https://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php?threads/pro-kennex-copper-ace-photos.279109/



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Crocodile

Legend
I think you should be able to transition to many of the current racquets that have traditional feel. I would try these:
1. Pro Kennex Redondo and Q Tours
2. Volkl C 10 Pro and V Sense 10mp
3. Yonex V Pro 97 and V Core 95
4. Prince Phantom Pro 93 and 100p
5. Angel V3 95 and 97
6. Donnay Pro One 97
7. Dunlop CX 2.0
8. Wilson RF 97
9. Head Prestige MP
All of these racquets will have the characteristics you maybe able to relate to and once you get used to one you won't miss your copper Ace.
If you are prepared to look for something a little older than current you could pick up a few PK Type C a Heritage frames or C2 ( Silver and black, Silver and red) which are thin beamed frames wuite cheaply.
 
For reference, I found the specs of the Copper Ace. People in the thread were saying it’s head size was about 88 sq. in. I’ll post a pic of mine against a 93P and maybe others for comparison.

Pro Kennex Copper Ace Spec:
weight: 12.5 oz
flex: 50
Swing Weight: 330
Composition: 60/40 (fiberglass/grahite)
Beam Width: 16 - 16.5mm beam
Pattern: 16x19 pattern
Balance: 8 pt head lite

https://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php?threads/pro-kennex-copper-ace-photos.279109/



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For comparison, here is the Copper Ace with the 93P, which is about the same depth in the throat, but maybe 1 frame width wider:


Here it is next to the Prince Textreme Tour 95. Deeper and wider:


And the Phantom Pro100P, which is much roomier all around:



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teachingprotx

Hall of Fame
For comparison, here is the Copper Ace with the 93P, which is about the same depth in the throat, but maybe 1 frame width wider:


Here it is next to the Prince Textreme Tour 95. Deeper and wider:


And the Phantom Pro100P, which is much roomier all around:


Wow this a nice frame comparison . Great job
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teachingprotx

Hall of Fame
If you really like the copper ace , but wish the head was larger , what about the pro kennex Ltd copper oversize ? Don’t know anything about it but maybe other pk aficionados may ?
 

teachingprotx

Hall of Fame
I have what looks like a copper ace oversize with a t bar in the throat like a prince graphite does. Can’t remember the name but it hits like the copper ace but with a bigger head . Let me know if u want the name and I can find it for you
 
Wow, thanks so much for all of the input everybody! This is invaluable and gives me a lot to draw from as I start digging in here. Cheers!
 
For comparison, here is the Copper Ace with the 93P, which is about the same depth in the throat, but maybe 1 frame width wider:


Here it is next to the Prince Textreme Tour 95. Deeper and wider:


And the Phantom Pro100P, which is much roomier all around:



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Wow, so helpful to see the relative sizes! Thanks!
 
There’s a shrine to angell racquets on here. The tc95 is the most praised of them all, and I’ve personally started using a tc100 as my match play racquet. I haven’t played with all of these, but going by reputation: most Donnay Pro One’s, Prince phantom pro 100p, head radical tour/pro tour 280/630, Wilson ProStaff 7.5 95, Wilson red ultra graphite 95, Dunlop revelation line or 200 series. I think a lot of Fischer/pacific frames have fiberglass and are thus pretty flexible. There’s a plethora of 93” prince 14x18 frames (listed as 90”) for quite cheap used prices. I just have the graphite comp 90, but some other flexible ones include the graphite pro 90, power pro/flex 90. Donnay xenecore gets a lot of (often enough deserved) flak for business management and post-production racquet assembly but their frames really are quite sweet and are probably close to unmatched in arm safety with their solid layers of dampening material.


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Wow, so helpful to see the relative sizes! Thanks!
Amazing how helpful people are here, right? I want to find you a link or 2 to some videos that explain basic racquet differences, and string differences too. TW does a good job breaking that stuff down.


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teachingprotx

Hall of Fame
There’s a shrine to angell racquets on here. The tc95 is the most praised of them all, and I’ve personally started using a tc100 as my match play racquet. I haven’t played with all of these, but going by reputation: most Donnay Pro One’s, Prince phantom pro 100p, head radical tour/pro tour 280/630, Wilson ProStaff 7.5 95, Wilson red ultra graphite 95, Dunlop revelation line or 200 series. I think a lot of Fischer/pacific frames have fiberglass and are thus pretty flexible. There’s a plethora of 93” prince 14x18 frames (listed as 90”) for quite cheap used prices. I just have the graphite comp 90, but some other flexible ones include the graphite pro 90, power pro/flex 90. Donnay xenecore gets a lot of (often enough deserved) flak for business management and post-production racquet assembly but their frames really are quite sweet and are probably close to unmatched in arm safety with their solid layers of dampening material.


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Generation — this guy knows his stuff ! Dude ! Well said what a great post you left ! Seriously good info man!
I noticed you mention the Wilson 95 ultra graphite! How does this one play ?! Dying to hit with one
 
Generation — this guy knows his stuff ! Dude ! Well said what a great post you left ! Seriously good info man!
I noticed you mention the Wilson 95 ultra graphite! How does this one play ?! Dying to hit with one
Thanks. I just like to look at things comprehensively when looking at things to collect. Besides, if the cost of 5 old racquets equals the price of one new racqet, well I feel perfectly fine in owning a little under 10. The red ultra graphite is trickier to find, so I just have the more common blue fpk. The thick/stiffer throat is a little funny, but better to have the thicker beam in the throat than the head I guess. I'd imagine the graphite plays just like a more flexible version of the fpk, as I hear that it swapped a bit of kevlar and maybe ceramic for a 50% fiberglass layup. Anyways, the fpk I have needs a bit of weight in the head for trading topspin groundies (I've been taught more modern strokes), but it does knife volleys away super slickly, sort of like an RF97 with a flexy head. Pretty nice, satisfying thunk on serves, while not being super powerful with them. Very nice balance of flex and energy return on chip/pickup/flick shots, which can help stay in it against hard hitters. Still haven't had had as much time with it as I'd like to get a clearer picture due to bad weather.
 
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