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PostPosted: 10 Feb 2012, 04:05 
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The Wood Magician
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I had a chance to use some more camphor burl recently on a handle for a customer blade, and then again on this new composition blade for myself. Camphor burl has such an interesting grain - it's worth some photos.

The blade itself was fairly heavy, and the medium weight camphor helped to keep the handle weight down (with a little sacrifice for the chakte-viga end cap). The composition is walnut-spruce-ayous-spruce-walnut. It's a bit on the heavy and fast side at 94g. I think reducing the 4mm core to 3.5mm would bring it back to a more widely acceptable weight range.

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PostPosted: 10 Feb 2012, 21:34 
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The Unprogrammable Player
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Ross, please stop posting all these pictures, or I will die from eagerness way before my times comes on your waiting list.. :D

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Setups (click on writings to read reviews):
1) Defence III / TSP P4 (0,5) / M3 (2,0)
2) Defence II / Joola Octopus (0,5) / M3 (2,0)
3) Ross Leidy "White Shadow" / P1R (1,3) / Hexer PS (1,7)


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PostPosted: 17 Feb 2012, 01:11 
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My Ross Leidy Blade is currently being made! This will be the longest 2 week wait of my life!

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PostPosted: 01 Apr 2012, 08:33 
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The Wood Magician
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I've been experimenting with a pair of similar composition blades recently, both about ALL+, hard outers (masur birch), soft core (kiri). They differ in their medials: one uses medium-soft spruce, the other a bit harder mahogany, but they both transition from soft core to hard outer. They both have proven to be good looping blades. The one using spruce being a bit lighter and springier. For having such a hard outer (1300 janka), the blades have enough flex to provide a decent amount of dwell time. And, the masur birch polishes so smooth, it makes peeling rubbers a dream.

Here are a few photos of each blade.

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PostPosted: 11 Apr 2012, 04:51 
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My first Ross Lady blade :)
name: "White Shadow"
composition: White Obeche ~ Spruce ~ Kiri ~ Basswood ~ Walnut
handle: Orange Agate ~ Bocote, Ziricote ~ Bocote
weight: 82g

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I was willing to go on this as an experiment, and if something went wrong (blade would not suit me at all) I had a plan B: "put the blade on a stand somewhere in the house for everyone to admire as a piece of sports ART".

Expectations
1) No balsa in a blade at all.
2) Total weight with edge banding less than 94g (lighter is better)
3) Backhand should have at least medium hard feeling (better harder than softer) and speed about def+ / all-
4) Forehand should have a feeling between soft and medium and speed in between all- all+
5) Blade should be stiff, flex: none to minimal (better none, but if there will be some, i will manage survive)
6) Not head heavy

Results
1) Ross suggested Kiri core and thank God Kiri doesn't feel like balsa (I hate balsa), though it still has some small catapult.
2) Blade: 82g, total setup <= 160g. This is a really good thing for me, because since I don't have the time to fully heal my shoulder injuries and 160g doesn't stress my shoulder too much, where my current competition setup( defence II, hexer ps, milky way 955: weights ~174g) feels too heavy and causes some pain when playing.
p.s. Edge banding was a great decision, added 2-3g to total weight is acceptable in my opinion.
3) Hardness is almost spot on, speed on bare blade is about def+ but with rubbers glued it feels faster, like my current Defence II (fine for my game-play)
4) Feels soft, speed with glued rubbers is < than defence II.
5) Blade seems quite stiff to me with a tiny flex that helps on pushes, but forces me to concentrate more when flat hitting.
6) Balance is just great
7) Handle looks and feels even better than I imagined :)

How does it play?
Since this is some sort of a combination blade and I play with LP on one side, I will be reviewing sides separately.

Backhand (walnut outer): I've decided to try P1R (red | 1-1,3mm) for the first time and... It feels just great, very easy to play with.
  • Lots of spin on chops. Can add strong sidespin too.
  • Though it reacts to incoming spin it's still easy to push balls back or to return no spin balls
  • Blocking is just crazy. I can choose to return low spiny balls when chop-blocking or floating no spin balls that just stops in the air at the end of table when blocking in a conventional way with some added wrist movement.
  • Best part for me is that most of my chops go deep or very deep without too much effort (like good old times when I was playing mat pro and C8). This rubber just feels right on this blade.
p.s. I can tell that this setup has huge potential if I'll decide to invest time in it.

Forehand (obeche outer): this is where things get complicated..
First my idea was to glue spinart onto the blade and just win using spin manipulation. I've tried that and spin amount was huge, but since spinart was totally new and I haven't used it for a couple of months I just totally sucked at attacking. Since I've had league finals coming in 11 days I've decided to postpone further testing of spinart (because I would have to change my strokes for attacking and also play with spinart for at least a few more sessions just to make this rubber alive)

So.. Yesterday I glued my beloved Hexer powersponge onto the blade and..
  • Can feel some small catapult (that I'm not a fan of), but in time I could get used to it
  • Can produce more spin on the ball than with defence II
  • Easier to control pushes, they have heavier underspin.
  • Less speed on full-power loops and smashes than with defence II.
  • Blocking and control of the ball: everything is great until catapult kicks in. I'm still not used to it.
  • Compared to defence II way more balls go long on smashes due to catapult and soft rubber-blade combo. I think everything will be fine once I get used to it.
  • Now the best part: funkiness. Yes you heard me right.. I can't say why it's happening but it's happening. While my opponents could judge fly path of the balls from defence II easily, because it was quite linear, they can't do that with RL blade and Hexer PS. Now if I add just a lil bit of wrist movement ball curves really nice. Sometimes it jumps up after a bounce, sometimes it don't. Sometimes it curves or even slows down a bit after bounce and that totally messes up the timing of my opponents. (oh, the ball we used was new, round, even, hard *** ball)

My thoughts: I think this is a really great blade that I might start using as my main blade for the next season if I will get over the "catapult" thingy.. On the more current note I think I should try hexer ps on the harder side and P1R on the softer, that should give me more control on smashes :/

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Setups (click on writings to read reviews):
1) Defence III / TSP P4 (0,5) / M3 (2,0)
2) Defence II / Joola Octopus (0,5) / M3 (2,0)
3) Ross Leidy "White Shadow" / P1R (1,3) / Hexer PS (1,7)


Last edited by Justas on 11 Apr 2012, 21:47, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: 11 Apr 2012, 05:05 
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lildudejds wrote:
My Ross Leidy Blade is currently being made! This will be the longest 2 week wait of my life!


I can only say that any wait I have had for a blade from Ross has absolutely been worth it.
tOD


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PostPosted: 12 Apr 2012, 03:17 
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The Wood Magician
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Justas - Thanks for the detail review of the blade! I appreciate the effort that you put into it. I'm happy to hear that the blade is a success. I've never had one of my blades described as having "funkiness", especially as its best attribute. :) But, as long as that's a positive thing, I can accept that. Best of luck on continued testing with with other rubber pairings.

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PostPosted: 12 Apr 2012, 06:34 
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Ross Leidy wrote:
Justas - Thanks for the detail review of the blade! I appreciate the effort that you put into it. I'm happy to hear that the blade is a success. I've never had one of my blades described as having "funkiness", especially as its best attribute. :) But, as long as that's a positive thing, I can accept that. Best of luck on continued testing with with other rubber pairings.


I wonder if that means the comments about smelling funky after a long session in a non-air conditioned venue is a good thing after all?:)

Get down, get funky,
tOD


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PostPosted: 12 Apr 2012, 15:39 
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theOldDuffer wrote:
I wonder if that means the comments about smelling funky after a long session in a non-air conditioned venue is a good thing after all?:)

Get down, get funky,
tOD


I really doubt it in your case :D
Yesterday I had another training session with the blade and started to like it even more.

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Setups (click on writings to read reviews):
1) Defence III / TSP P4 (0,5) / M3 (2,0)
2) Defence II / Joola Octopus (0,5) / M3 (2,0)
3) Ross Leidy "White Shadow" / P1R (1,3) / Hexer PS (1,7)


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PostPosted: 16 May 2012, 00:15 
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The Wood Magician
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This week I completed a blade for a mytt member who requested a very decorative handle design. I was very pleased with how it turned out and wanted to share a couple photos. The blade composition is similar to YEO: walnut-spruce-ayous-spruce-walnut. Handle is amboyna burl with masur birch stripes.

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PostPosted: 16 May 2012, 01:16 
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Pfffff.... A real piece of art! As usual. Congratulation! :clap:

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PostPosted: 16 May 2012, 02:47 
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Ross Leidy wrote:
This week I completed a blade for a mytt member who requested a very decorative handle design. I was very pleased with how it turned out and wanted to share a couple photos. The blade composition is similar to YEO: walnut-spruce-ayous-spruce-walnut. Handle is amboyna burl with masur birch stripes.

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Absolutely beautiful
tOD


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PostPosted: 16 May 2012, 07:58 
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What an awesome looking handle! :clap: :clap: :clap:

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PostPosted: 16 May 2012, 10:27 
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Pips for Breakfast! Mmmm. Beary Nice!
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That is probably the nicest looking blade in the world! That handle is ... :*: :*: :*: :*: :*:

One of these days we're gonna have to rate our favourite Leidy blade, me thinks!

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Weapon 1: Andro Kinetic Supreme Hinoki/Zylon OFF-; Andro Hexer HDs (FH 2.1/BH 1.9)
Weapon 2: Ross Leidy 'Smokey'; Friendship 729-5s
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Club2: Ballarat - since 2011

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PostPosted: 16 May 2012, 10:46 
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Do you feel lucky (young) punk?
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Osker,
It would do no good. As soon as you vote for one, he will make a better one. There is no limit with Ross. :rofl: :up: :clap:


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