Wilson Clash the Most Flexible Racket Ever Made?

#51
Darn I was at the TW demo tent and didn’t test the XP5. Forgot about this thread. Power, Spin, Comfort and Control. The perfect frame. Not sure why Wilson bothered with the Clash which has power, comfort, spin and no control. They already had the answer in the XP5.

Maybe I’ll give it a whirl next year.
Why wait until next year, what's wrong with this year? Maybe next week?

Just by coincidence, while I was purchasing a new racket this past Wednesday, I picked up the two new Clash frames to demo (Clash 100 and Clash 100 Tour).

Gave them a whirl yesterday. I like them. Different feel than the XP5, but essentially both rackets (Clash/XP5) have the same characteristics we have been talking about.
 
Last edited:
#54
For those of you who don't know or haven't observed an RA machine. The racket flex is measured with a bar that presses down on the throat of the racket. This not the best measure of a racket's flexibility as few (hopefully) of us actually contact the ball in the throat of the racket. The RA measurement actually tests the flex at the mid point of the racket. SI measures the flexibility of rackets from butt cap to tip. The grip is secured and a weight is attached to the tip of the racket. The amount the racket bends is the SI number in millimeters. For the Clash it is 11.2mm, Wilson Pro Staff 97CV 6.4, Babolat Pure Drive 5.2, Head Prestige Pro 7.5. In my opinion, this measurement is more accurate as to what you actually "feel" when you strike the ball.
What ever Wilson did, I can play 3 sets of tennis with the clash tour without wrist pain. Normally after two sets with my blade 98, wrist is sore for 2 days. So for sure it is easier on the joints. Stiff rackets are nice, but someone with injuries can get back into the game using the Clash. Will keep one in the bag for back to back matches.
 
#55
What ever Wilson did, I can play 3 sets of tennis with the clash tour without wrist pain. Normally after two sets with my blade 98, wrist is sore for 2 days. So for sure it is easier on the joints. Stiff rackets are nice, but someone with injuries can get back into the game using the Clash. Will keep one in the bag for back to back matches.
Although a different feel, a weighted up XP5 will allow you to do the same.
I've got two.
 
#56
Interesting that Wilson measures the flex at the very tip of the frame and says that is where the ball is impacted. I would think they would measure the flex at the point of the sweetspot around 3 and 9 o'clock because that is where you really hit the ball.
 
#57
Interesting that Wilson measures the flex at the very tip of the frame and says that is where the ball is impacted. I would think they would measure the flex at the point of the sweetspot around 3 and 9 o'clock because that is where you really hit the ball.
I don’t think they are measuring flex at the very tip of the frame. They are applying weight/force at the tip and clamping the frame at the handle where you hold the racquet which means they are measuring flex of the entire length of the frame.

If you wanted to specifically measure flex at the tip, you would clamp the frame at 3 and 9 then apply force to the tip.
 
#58
Interesting that Wilson measures the flex at the very tip of the frame and says that is where the ball is impacted. I would think they would measure the flex at the point of the sweetspot around 3 and 9 o'clock because that is where you really hit the ball.

This is the 1st thought that comes in mind :)

But then think again... if you hit it close to any of the sweet spots who cares about flexibility or stiffness...

Problem starts if you hit it at 3-9 but not center (closer to the frame) so we deal with TW and stability OR over 3-9 (closer to the tip) so we deal with flex, etc.

That takes us to 11.30-12.30, not a big deal...

It is fine where they measure it, more proper in comparison to the RDC
 
Last edited:
#59
In each case... the big picture is

High Flex - Big Time Stabillity


This is bigger than it sounds! And light frame right(?)...

Some competitor engineers look pale lately...
 
#60
I didn't do a good job of being clear in my first post. In the video, she clearly points to the tip of the frame where the measurement is taken and says "There are other ways to measure the flexibility in the market, but I think ours is more accurate because this is where you hold the racquet and this (pointing to the very tip of the frame) is where you would impact the ball."

When a ball impacts the sweetspot, the racquet doesn't just flex evenly like a bow. The tip and throat both flex forward, bending around the ball. From the throat to the handle, the racquet bends in a curve in the opposite direction. So there area few things going on. First, I don't know that any static measure of bending will accurately reflect the dynamic nature of the flex that occurs when actually hitting a ball. Second, I guess it's arguable what contribution the flex, above the impact point all the way to the tip, contributes to the flex felt during actual hitting of the ball, yet this video demonstrates their measurement includes this flex. Third, the racquet is unstrung, and all racquets become more flexible when they are strung but to varying degrees.

It's easy to sit on the sidelines and nitpick. As a marketing video, it doesn't need to be scientifically accurate, and probably a scientifically accurate video would be incredibly boring and not make sense to a very large percentage of the population. But it just seemed like when you are introducing a new technology, you want to do so in a way that minimizes the detractors from pointing out what they may say is just marketing hype without any basis in reality.
 
#61
I don’t think they are measuring flex at the very tip of the frame. They are applying weight/force at the tip and clamping the frame at the handle where you hold the racquet which means they are measuring flex of the entire length of the frame.
Correct they aren't measuring flex at the tip, but that's not the point.
The point is that we test the flex naturally when we strike the ball with the racket.
We usually strike the ball in the mid-point. of the racket hoop, not at its tip.

So the weight to test the racket's flex should likewise be attached to the mid-point of the racket hoop.
 
#62
Why wait until next year, what's wrong with this year? Maybe next week?

Just by coincidence, while I was purchasing a new racket this past Wednesday, I picked up the two new Clash frames to demo (Clash 100 and Clash 100 Tour).

Gave them a whirl yesterday. I like them. Different feel than the XP5, but essentially both rackets (Clash/XP5) have the same characteristics we have been talking about.
Except coming from control frames, the Clash had no control when I played with it. Comfort, power, spin, yes. Control? Even with a full be do of poly my precision was way off.

Whereas the Phantom 100 18x20 I could point and shoot and the ball was like it was on a string. Same with the 93P.

I think we may be used to far different levels of control here.
 
#63
Correct they aren't measuring flex at the tip, but that's not the point.
The point is that we test the flex naturally when we strike the ball with the racket.
We usually strike the ball in the mid-point. of the racket hoop, not at its tip.

So the weight to test the racket's flex should likewise be attached to the mid-point of the racket hoop.
I was responding to Injured’s post. He said they were measuring flex at the tip. I was pointing out that was not the case.

I agree with what you posted.
 
#64
Except coming from control frames, the Clash had no control when I played with it. Comfort, power, spin, yes. Control? Even with a full be do of poly my precision was way off.

Whereas the Phantom 100 18x20 I could point and shoot and the ball was like it was on a string. Same with the 93P.

I think we may be used to far different levels of control here.
I play with control frames like the Ultra Tour, Blade 18/20, and prestige mp. When I demo’d the Clash and Clash Tour, i didn’t have major issues with control. Sure it wasn’t as precise as my frames, but the ball was dropping where I was generally aiming. Maybe the strings in your demo were really dead.
 
#66
Except coming from control frames, the Clash had no control when I played with it. Comfort, power, spin, yes. Control? Even with a full be do of poly my precision was way off.

Whereas the Phantom 100 18x20 I could point and shoot and the ball was like it was on a string. Same with the 93P.

I think we may be used to far different levels of control here.

No I don't think we are talking about different levels of control. We both are cut from the same cloth.

I had been playing with my Dunlop Max 200G for decades up until last year.
That's when I went on my search for a replacement for it.

After trying out more than a dozen rackets I gravitated to the following frames:

Wilson XP5
Wilson 98L
Dunlop Bio 200+

And just recently added the Wilson Ultra Tour to the mix.

At the moment I give a slight nod to the Ultra Tour over the Bio 200+.

What is always top of mind for me? Comfort and control.

I tried out the fabled Prince 93P a few weeks ago. Nice racket.
But when I A/B'ed it with my Max200G, my Max won out easily.

So as mad dog mentioned, it's possible that your demo strings were dead.
I had very nice control with the Clashes.

Do yourself a favor and try out a weighted XP5. You should be very pleasantly surprised.
I use it every week.
 
#67
I didn't do a good job of being clear in my first post. In the video, she clearly points to the tip of the frame where the measurement is taken and says "There are other ways to measure the flexibility in the market, but I think ours is more accurate because this is where you hold the racquet and this (pointing to the very tip of the frame) is where you would impact the ball."

When a ball impacts the sweetspot, the racquet doesn't just flex evenly like a bow. The tip and throat both flex forward, bending around the ball. From the throat to the handle, the racquet bends in a curve in the opposite direction. So there area few things going on. First, I don't know that any static measure of bending will accurately reflect the dynamic nature of the flex that occurs when actually hitting a ball. Second, I guess it's arguable what contribution the flex, above the impact point all the way to the tip, contributes to the flex felt during actual hitting of the ball, yet this video demonstrates their measurement includes this flex. Third, the racquet is unstrung, and all racquets become more flexible when they are strung but to varying degrees.

It's easy to sit on the sidelines and nitpick. As a marketing video, it doesn't need to be scientifically accurate, and probably a scientifically accurate video would be incredibly boring and not make sense to a very large percentage of the population. But it just seemed like when you are introducing a new technology, you want to do so in a way that minimizes the detractors from pointing out what they may say is just marketing hype without any basis in reality.

I have understood your first post, and what was the main reason you posted. And thank you for the nice clarification.

I have met R&D Wilson guys in the past, and I was not impressed. I have also met from other companies, and I can tell first hand that some amazing frames was a result of luck and not R&D.

At the same time there is a sick atmosphere in the racquet industry that companies are so willing to use any gimmick in order to sell, and mix it so easily with pseudo-innovations.

As a result I was super sceptical about this frame... until I tried it.

Here is a more detailed review:

https://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php?threads/official-wilson-clash-thread.637021/post-13172795

I believe that there is true innovation in this case.
 
#68
I didn't do a good job of being clear in my first post. In the video, she clearly points to the tip of the frame where the measurement is taken and says "There are other ways to measure the flexibility in the market, but I think ours is more accurate because this is where you hold the racquet and this (pointing to the very tip of the frame) is where you would impact the ball."

When a ball impacts the sweetspot, the racquet doesn't just flex evenly like a bow. The tip and throat both flex forward, bending around the ball. From the throat to the handle, the racquet bends in a curve in the opposite direction. So there area few things going on. First, I don't know that any static measure of bending will accurately reflect the dynamic nature of the flex that occurs when actually hitting a ball. Second, I guess it's arguable what contribution the flex, above the impact point all the way to the tip, contributes to the flex felt during actual hitting of the ball, yet this video demonstrates their measurement includes this flex. Third, the racquet is unstrung, and all racquets become more flexible when they are strung but to varying degrees.

It's easy to sit on the sidelines and nitpick. As a marketing video, it doesn't need to be scientifically accurate, and probably a scientifically accurate video would be incredibly boring and not make sense to a very large percentage of the population. But it just seemed like when you are introducing a new technology, you want to do so in a way that minimizes the detractors from pointing out what they may say is just marketing hype without any basis in reality.


I tend to believe that Wilson guys did not care about RA as presented by Babolat. When they speak about Flex they care about true Comfort. That was their goal.

And we have to thank them for that.

But then, they had to create something modern, something competitive, something that can sell... It has to be stable at low weights without customization, able to spin bigger than the classics. Wilson did it.

It is an all round frame, they did it.

---

Honestly, how many posts, how many people getting injured, how many young kids playing with 25 inches stiff head heavy babolat wilson etc vibrating like a wild beehive. Kids being injured because of these beasts???

We really have to praise them for this racquet even if we do not like their quality control or other stuff
 
#69
No I don't think we are talking about different levels of control. We both are cut from the same cloth.

I had been playing with my Dunlop Max 200G for decades up until last year.
That's when I went on my search for a replacement for it.

After trying out more than a dozen rackets I gravitated to the following frames:

Wilson XP5
Wilson 98L
Dunlop Bio 200+

And just recently added the Wilson Ultra Tour to the mix.

At the moment I give a slight nod to the Ultra Tour over the Bio 200+.

What is always top of mind for me? Comfort and control.

I tried out the fabled Prince 93P a few weeks ago. Nice racket.
But when I A/B'ed it with my Max200G, my Max won out easily.

So as mad dog mentioned, it's possible that your demo strings were dead.
I had very nice control with the Clashes.

Do yourself a favor and try out a weighted XP5. You should be very pleasantly surprised.
I use it every week.
Not surprised you found the Max 200G better than the 93P given you had used that racket for years and knew it’s every nuance.

What surprises me is thinking a XP5 and Clash has similar control properties to a max 200G and a 93P

It’s like telling a pro that your oversized Pings are as accurate as his custom made blades.

Ye canna change the laws of physics, as a famous engineer once said. An oversized frame with open string pattern will always have too much string deflection to direct a ball with the same accuracy as a tight patterned midsize frame.

Yes you can achieve depth control with spin, but it’s not the same thing as painting lines with directional control.

My wife purchased the clash and I’ve had more time with it than just the short TW demo. It’s a nice comfort frame with good power and spin but has nowhere near the feel and control of the 18x20 Phantoms.
 
#70
Not surprised you found the Max 200G better than the 93P given you had used that racket for years and knew it’s every nuance.

What surprises me is thinking a XP5 and Clash has similar control properties to a max 200G and a 93P
And I'm not saying that.
So far I've been saying that the XP5 and Clash are very similar in their qualities.

None of the rackets I've tried to date can touch the 200G.
My quest was to find a similar racket to the 200G, but in a lighter frame.

I believe I have come as close as I am ever going to come.
 
#71
And I'm not saying that.
So far I've been saying that the XP5 and Clash are very similar in their qualities.

None of the rackets I've tried to date can touch the 200G.
My quest was to find a similar racket to the 200G, but in a lighter frame.

I believe I have come as close as I am ever going to come.
I think we can agree that the 200G is a great classic frame. Wish more frames were built that way. 93P is closest I’ve found in a modern frame.
 
#75
Prince Phantom Pro 100 is much more comfortable as Clash. After a month playing, I would say that the clash is okay with the comfort, but there are many raquets that are much more comfortable. My Soft Drives(1G) with RA 65 leaded up to 305g are more comfortable as the Clash Tour.
 
#76
Prince Phantom Pro 100 is much more comfortable as Clash. After a month playing, I would say that the clash is okay with the comfort, but there are many raquets that are much more comfortable. My Soft Drives(1G) with RA 65 leaded up to 305g are more comfortable as the Clash Tour.
The 16x18 or 18x20?
 
#79
Interesting that Wilson measures the flex at the very tip of the frame and says that is where the ball is impacted. I would think they would measure the flex at the point of the sweetspot around 3 and 9 o'clock because that is where you really hit the ball.
Am glad Wilson is using this method. The measurement of 'total deflection' upon a load at the tip is the correct way to asses racquet flexibility. Measuring at the tip or at the 'impact point' is not so important since it is a 'relative' reference called S.I. (Softness Index ?)

Anybody knows the S.I. index definition ? vissually is very simple... I wonder the clamping influence on softer grip...

My only question is: Why they choose 2.8 Kg ??? ackward value. Could we standardize on something more reasonable ? ex: 2 or 3kg (2-3lts of water).

The RA method from Babolat should be discarded for ever, structurally wrong for the purpose since racquets do not work that way at impact.
 
#80
Correct they aren't measuring flex at the tip, but that's not the point.
The point is that we test the flex naturally when we strike the ball with the racket.
We usually strike the ball in the mid-point. of the racket hoop, not at its tip.

So the weight to test the racket's flex should likewise be attached to the mid-point of the racket hoop.
The relative difference is not significant for the purpose of 'overall flex', they call it 'index'... nothing else. By far better than the RA method which is very wrong.
 
#82
Although a different feel, a weighted up XP5 will allow you to do the same.
I've got two.
I would agree with you, except I played for a month with my old frame Wilson 6.1 95 at 12.5 ounces and had zero change. Still the wrist was sore. So far, the Clash has helped, can play 2 hours or so, no pain afterwards. I have the Clash tour 4 3/8 using 16 gauge string; same as the blade and six.one 98. So for me it was worth the change.
 
#83
Nope.
As you can see the tip is pressed down. The bar is stationary.
In TennisTodd's defense, whether the racquet if supported at the ends and the middle bar pushes against the racquet or the racquet is fixed at one end and the midpoint and a force is applied at the end doesn't really change the way the racquet will flex. It's basically looking at two ways to solve the same equation.

SI measures the flexibility of rackets from butt cap to tip. The grip is secured and a weight is attached to the tip of the racket. The amount the racket bends is the SI number in millimeters. For the Clash it is 11.2mm, Wilson Pro Staff 97CV 6.4, Babolat Pure Drive 5.2, Head Prestige Pro 7.5. In my opinion, this measurement is more accurate as to what you actually "feel" when you strike the ball.
I'm not sure I'm understanding this properly, but it seems to me this is a very similar way of measuring the flex, except instead of having one support at the end of the grip and the other at the throat and force pulling the tip down, there is one fixed support at the end of the grip - i.e. a moment connection - and a force pulling the tip down. Is this correct?
I suppose this would be more representative of how the racquet feels, because the maximum bending moment (and curvature) will be at the fixed support (i.e. the hand gripping the racquet) instead of the middle of the racquet (at the support point on the throat), but I doubt that in a real-life setting - i.e. under dynamic loading - the maximum the maximum moment and curvature of the racquet is going to be at the handle.
 
#84
Right, so the video posted earlier by floridatennisusta shows how Wilson measures stiffness, which is what I had understood from explanation given by TennisTodd.

The biggest difference between standard RDC and the Wilson method is that the stiffness close to the handle has a bigger impact on deflection (i.e. "stiffness") using the Wilson method than the RDC method. The cushy grip helps, and a soft handle/pallet material would also make it "more flexible", compared than a wood racquet with a leather grip, which may account for the difference between the two.
The dynamic behaviour is still a completely different ball game, because of mass distribution/acceleration vs static loading, and the fact that a hand holding a tennis racquet is not as rigid as the Wilson apparatus, but the TWU numbers seem to make it out as a comfortable racquet. I'd like to see a Pacific X-Force tested this way, because that skinny throat at the handle would flex a lot.
 
#85
My only question is: Why they choose 2.8 Kg ???

The RA method from Babolat should be discarded for ever, structurally wrong ... racquets do not work that way at impact.
Agree - why that weight? Weight of the incoming ball?

How do they work at impact? Isn't that what Wilson is addressing with the mapping of the carbon mesh? They do know how it works, and reckon they can make a racquet respond in particular ways. Hitting hard hardens it the heck up. Bunting a hard incoming ball it can be a bit soft.

biggest difference between standard RDC and the Wilson method is that the stiffness close to the handle has a bigger impact on deflection (i.e. "stiffness") using the Wilson method than the RDC method.

The dynamic behaviour is still a completely different ball game, because of mass distribution/acceleration vs static loading
But this is where we are now, how does a racquet respond under the dynamic load of an incoming ball. Slow mo 1000+ FPS film show racquets wobble like water, not smoothly bend at the throat. Seems to me to address that the Wilson engineers have mapped out how they want the carbon fibre to bend throughout.

(Sorry for using their terminology of "mapping" etc as I realise that is part of their hype - their words imply mastery/knowledge over that wobble...!)
 
#86
Agree - why that weight? Weight of the incoming ball?

How do they work at impact? Seems to me to address that the Wilson engineers have mapped out how they want the carbon fibre to bend throughout.

(Sorry for using their terminology of "mapping" etc as I realise that is part of their hype - their words imply mastery/knowledge over that wobble...!)
I have been doing this type of work since the late 80's in Aerospace, etc. Every engineering dept. working on composites do that art of arranging fibers, resins and shapes: aircrafts, sports eqpt., etc. There is no other way to do it properly with materials that you are 'designing' for a particular behavior... It is the Engineering Science of Composites... as is called.

Are we in a new era of 'soft' racquets ? perhaps, there are too many tennis players with a broken elbow...

Long time ago, I realize that issue since I couldn't take certain vibrations... even on a soft frame like the Rossignol 200 Carbon !!! I used it 4 days and had pain, discarded, got a wonderful Kneissl, stiffer but no pain whatsoever.

Lowering string tension to lessen the impact has the clear limits of control. So it is always a delicate balance of equipment to tune your game... but it is a lot of fun. Does it work ? Hell yeah !!!

PS: AND I hope new "soft hard courts" also for the worn knees, hips, etc. Clay is wonderful, but costly and not practical.
 
Top