Racquet Companies Listen to me

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by tennis666, Jan 1, 2006.

  1. tennis666

    tennis666 New User

    Jun 26, 2004
    I got a brillent idea tell me what you think.

    Ok so all if not most racquet companies have had good classica tennis racquets, right?

    There is Head will the Pretige Classic and Pro tour 280
    Wilson with the orginal prostaff and probally some others i done know
    Prince with the old graphite
    Yonex with mmmm some old yonex racquet i dont reallly know about yonex.

    But my point is that all companies have had a couple really great old racquet that still have a faithful following and if any company can introduce thoses very same racquets spec for spec but maybe with a cool new paint job wouldnt that be great.

    I dont think the companies would loose money because they are still introduceing a new racquet and the paint job might bring in new people

    Would this make any sense or am I just crazy
  2. PBODY99

    PBODY99 Hall of Fame

    Aug 17, 2005
    Wilson has re-release several frame in 2005< Hyper Hammer 2.0 sledge "skunk" and a couple of others. The new paint jobs might not be a help, as players want what they remember, feel and visulally.
  3. nViATi

    nViATi Hall of Fame

    Mar 6, 2005
    We are only a small fraction of all the sales. Why goto all the trouble and money to satisfy a tiny audience and make barely any money overall.
  4. OnyxZ28

    OnyxZ28 Hall of Fame

    Sep 14, 2004
    Besides, a Prestige Classic in anything but its old pj is blasphemy.
  5. bismark

    bismark Rookie

    Apr 18, 2004
    Market is way too small and may not be cost effective. Manufacturers wouldn't go for it. Mass market demands new models (with new technology) which means more profit.

    Unless...a smaller company buys the mold and manufactures under its own brand. A Taiwanese company once did that (wonder if it's still around) and sold these clones on the internet. But beware, the specs are way way off from the originals!

    A better idea would be going for the niche racquet users. Example:

    (i) Weed specializes in quality oversize granny sticks and have a loyal followings among elders. Gamma also did the same with Big Bubba and the successful Diamondfiber C-series until they made a mistake of trying to compete with the big boys with players' and tweener racquets.

    (ii) Vantage and Topspin make customized frames for gear junkies who are very very particular about their equipment. :)

    (iii) Pro Kennex's racquets are well-known for their comfort and elbow-safe qualities. As a result, it has a fan base of injury prone players!

    I may have missed out some, but you get the point.
  6. mctennis

    mctennis Hall of Fame

    Feb 19, 2004
    Good points Bismark. Some of the problems are the smaller racquet companies want the shelf space the bigger companies get. $$$ dictates what shelf space anyone gets. Find your nitch and work that angle. If you're not the big three and pay players $$$ to play with your racquets you're not going to get a big shift in club players wanting to use your sticks. Look at the ATP Series Spalding came out with for example. Heavier nice racquets but with no players using them they went belly up with that campaign.
  7. basil J

    basil J Hall of Fame

    Jun 6, 2005
    boston area
    If a racquet company still has a mold and a retailer will take batches of 200 rcaquets, they usually will produce them. I found a dealer in canada that carries brand new Wilson hyper prostaff 6.1's and he told me that Wilson produces for them whenever he needs them. They are still a good seller for him, so why not produce them. I wish Dunlop would make a batch of the 200 G revelations. they would sell.
  8. jck01

    jck01 Semi-Pro

    Mar 12, 2004
    I think most people demand new racquets too - for more power, more control, more comfort, etc.
  9. Indy Tennis

    Indy Tennis Semi-Pro

    Mar 16, 2004
    I totally agree. If Head still produced the Pro Tour 280 I'd probably buy a new one every year.

    Bring back Twaron!
  10. Vantage231511

    Vantage231511 Rookie

    Jun 24, 2005
    I am actually amazed at how the industry has changed over the years.

    In the old days, (not including wood, because that was a very bizarre time) early metal and graphite frames were designed by actual players or scientists who understood the game and tried to make a better playing racquet. Rene Lacoste came up with the T2000. While "unplayable" by most, it was very popular on the tour for several years after it debuted and was actually a very good frame.

    Ben Press (friend tennis player of Little Mo) came out with one of the first graphite frames (the Graphite Master) for the same reason, better frame, better material. Howard Head came up with the Prince for the rest of us. Nothing in any of their designs had anything to do with "maximizing sales", "making huge profit" or the like.

    Enter leveraged buyouts and company diversification. Now companies without a lick of tennis knowledge or care buy up successful manufacturers but bring zero tennis knowledge to the table. Then enter the bean counters and the marketers.

    The marketers start noticing that a brand in tennis tends to stick with established designs, with little or no sales growth nor with any large margin. Well, when a business buys another they are NOT looking for small, steady, consistent profit. The marketers entered, and while good in some ways for the industry, basically they turned sporting goods into "value added items" and therefore had companies ditch "old, flat sales, no flash" frames. Lets face it, you can't raise the price of a Wilson PS 6.0 drastically for any reason once the market has discovered what one costs.

    The marketing arms have the companies outsource all the r&d and development to companies without tennis experience or care for the industry. Enter "rollers", "mitt rockers" "catapults" "woofer grommets" etc. The technology isn't really offered to improve your game as much as to justify higher prices for a frame that even with these technologies still costs in bulk around $30-$40 for the manufacturer to make.

    Most of today's racquet companies could care less about tennis or the tennis player. (Vantage, Volkl, Bosworth,PowerAngle are the few notable exceptions) and care only about short term profit and constant sales growth.

    I know a long rant. Maybe I could have put it better by saying that since none of the companies is really about making a better racquet nor about producing a product without any mark-up ability, you lose the classic frames. If you notice most of the frames that we all pine for they were designed and built in the late 1980's and early 1990's and all seemed to disappear after the companies in question merged or were bought out by other, non-tennis companies or new management groups.

    Was I the only one who ever questioned why Benetton bought Prince and then destroyed the product line?
  11. Indy Tennis

    Indy Tennis Semi-Pro

    Mar 16, 2004
    Excellent analysis.

    I always wondered why tennis racquet design seemed to reach its apex in the mid-to-late 1980s.
  12. Pomeranian

    Pomeranian Semi-Pro

    Jan 6, 2006
    Vantage, that is a great observation. I mean for a while racquet technology kept on going up and up. But, racquet technology has stopped making big improvements. Quality frames from 10-20 years ago could still match or agrueably be better than frames nowadays. But racquet companies would not ever admit that, they want to fool people into believing that their ncoded crap, pardon my french, is revolutionary. They care about money, they want to target the largest ammount of tennis players. They do not care about representing everyone's needs, they care about not losing money. Some of the newer frames should have warning labels on it saying, may cause TE, play at your own risk. I know there are a lot of factors that cause TE and racquets may not be the dominating factor but given that most players do not have picture perfect technique, you needn't create a super stiff racquet.

    Vantage is a great company that's makes money and lets you costumize your own racquet. But it has limmited options or else everyone would buy vantage.
  13. PBODY99

    PBODY99 Hall of Fame

    Aug 17, 2005
    Hmmm, and the best classical string instruments were made in Italy years ago and everyone wants to recreate..............sorry we are talking about tennis rackets.
    Yes, there have been few real improvements in frame design and the change in the human beings who play this game have been equally small. There are design limits when it comes to human, the 100 won't be run in 5.0 seconds by anyone with human bones and ligaments. The artist who use these sticks too have limits in just what they can use.

    You are correct, the multi-nationals that purchased the majors have to grow their profits or they will suffer in the stock market.

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