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 Post subject: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 28 Feb 2014, 20:08 
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What are the variables to look out for when selecting a blade for hardbat?

I really enjoyed my session last night, so am definitely keen to play some more. Unless the chap who lent me his bat will sell it to me (unlikely) I'd like to acquire a hardbat setup.

I normally go with a straight handle so I can twiddle - not an issue.

I usually play with a very slow blade, as a defender.

I own a 'spare' Tibhar Defence Plus - I could conceivably chuck 2 x OX SP on that for starters. Any reason not to? Should one look to an oversize blade? Or frankly does it not matter - just try it and evolve?

Basically what variables are we looking at and how do they impact the hardbat game?

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 28 Feb 2014, 22:48 
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LordCope wrote:
What are the variables to look out for when selecting a blade for hardbat?

I really enjoyed my session last night, so am definitely keen to play some more. Unless the chap who lent me his bat will sell it to me (unlikely) I'd like to acquire a hardbat setup.

I normally go with a straight handle so I can twiddle - not an issue.

I usually play with a very slow blade, as a defender.

I own a 'spare' Tibhar Defence Plus - I could conceivably chuck 2 x OX SP on that for starters. Any reason not to? Should one look to an oversize blade? Or frankly does it not matter - just try it and evolve?

Basically what variables are we looking at and how do they impact the hardbat game?
try www.valortabletennis.co.uk

CHEERS!

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 28 Feb 2014, 23:10 
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LordCope wrote:
What are the variables to look out for when selecting a blade for hardbat?

...I usually play with a very slow blade, as a defender.

I own a 'spare' Tibhar Defence Plus - I could conceivably chuck 2 x OX SP on that for starters. Any reason not to? Should one look to an oversize blade? Or frankly does it not matter - just try it and evolve?

Basically what variables are we looking at and how do they impact the hardbat game?


Blade selection for hardbat is the same as sponge: it all comes down to personal preference, and modern blades work just as well as classic ones. I personally prefer a slower blade, but two hardbatters I know (one at 1800 and another at 2000) both use Butterfly OFF blades.

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 01 Mar 2014, 02:36 
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gnopgnipster wrote:
LordCope wrote:

Basically what variables are we looking at and how do they impact the hardbat game?
try http://www.valortabletennis.co.uk

CHEERS!


Wow, you never miss an opportunity do you... I'm asking a general question, looking for advice from experienced players, but you can't resist another go at pimping your wares. It'd be entirely different if you answered the question, gave a perspective, and then added something like: BTW, check out my website, where you can obtain.... etc etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 01 Mar 2014, 02:38 
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abdulmuhsee wrote:
Blade selection for hardbat is the same as sponge: it all comes down to personal preference, and modern blades work just as well as classic ones. I personally prefer a slower blade, but two hardbatters I know (one at 1800 and another at 2000) both use Butterfly OFF blades.


OK cool - thanks. I'll just experiment and see.

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 01 Mar 2014, 05:47 
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LordCope wrote:
gnopgnipster wrote:
LordCope wrote:

Basically what variables are we looking at and how do they impact the hardbat game?
try http://www.valortabletennis.co.uk

CHEERS!


Wow, you never miss an opportunity do you... I'm asking a general question, looking for advice from experienced players, but you can't resist another go at pimping your wares. It'd be entirely different if you answered the question, gave a perspective, and then added something like: BTW, check out my website, where you can obtain.... etc etc.
Greetings Lord Cope, I am sorry you think I am "pimping my wares" simply because I invited you to visit a company located in the UK that caters to Hardbat players in Europe. (It is a lot cheaper to ship products from UK than from the US thus passing the savings to table tennis players) The idea was for you to visit the website, see if you liked any of the products, and then ask questions of the staff, or comparison questions about Hardbat products.

Hardbat "rules" are very different in Europe than in the USA. I know that Fred Dove was promoting tournaments in UK were you had to use his equipment in order to play. In the rest of the continent that varies. Maybe Francis can elaborate further but my understanding is that you can use any blade with any short pimpled rubber as long as the rubber does not have sponge. If you plan to play in Mr. Dove's tournaments you may as well practice with whatever he uses for his tournaments. If you plan to play in Europe, like I said, rules are different.

Classic hardbats are very different from modern sponge bats. In the "old" days a good heavy bat (ie. Slazenger, Barna, Hock...) was considered to be a professional Bat. Light-weight bats were considered for amateurs. I try to make them as close to the old ones as possible. I have some Barna bats that are in pristine condition. They are very different in how they play to the modern ones. Mostly I believe it has to do with the rubber. In the old days you had very short pimpled rubber that slowed the speed and thus increased the spin. Today because of ITTF's rulings the pips in the rubber have to be larger and thus are faster and don't generate as much spin. I take some of that back, there are some rubbers that are not approved for Hardbat in the USA that are very spinny.

In my opinion the number one thing to look for in a Hardbat is control. I know some people have said that "control" is a fabrication by manufacturers to dupe amateurs, but if you have (for example) a blade that is full of knots in the inside layers, or that the layers are not well glued, you will have a blade with very poor control. The ball simply will not go were you hit it. The game of hardbat is a game of control, being able to make the drop-shots, hit the ball at extreme angles, make good blocks. The next item is the speed of the blade. Some players like fast blades because their technique is good and can make the shots without having to make fast body movements. The slower blades are generally better for an all-round type of game.

These are some general opinions.

I will try to go to the UK later this year. Maybe we can play some Hardbat and drink a few beers afterwards.

CHEERS!

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 01 Mar 2014, 06:50 
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gnopgnipster wrote:
Greetings Lord Cope, I am sorry you think I am "pimping my wares" simply because I invited you to visit a company located in the UK that caters to Hardbat players in Europe. (It is a lot cheaper to ship products from UK than from the US thus passing the savings to table tennis players) The idea was for you to visit the website, see if you liked any of the products, and then ask questions of the staff, or comparison questions about Hardbat products.


It's me that should say sorry. I was unfairly harsh. I did feel a bit annoyed, because I've done a fair amount of reading the history of the forum and I notice that you seem to pop up with the same recommendation each time. But I'm sure you meant well.

Quote:
Hardbat "rules" are very different in Europe than in the USA.


Right now I'm really only interested in 'any' hardbat setup, because I enjoyed the sensation and felt it was an interesting educational thing to try too.

Quote:
Classic hardbats are very different from modern sponge bats. In the "old" days a good heavy bat (ie. Slazenger, Barna, Hock...) was considered to be a professional Bat. Light-weight bats were considered for amateurs. I try to make them as close to the old ones as possible. I have some Barna bats that are in pristine condition. They are very different in how they play to the modern ones. Mostly I believe it has to do with the rubber. In the old days you had very short pimpled rubber that slowed the speed and thus increased the spin. Today because of ITTF's rulings the pips in the rubber have to be larger and thus are faster and don't generate as much spin. I take some of that back, there are some rubbers that are not approved for Hardbat in the USA that are very spinny.


Thanks - very interesting and useful background.

Quote:
In my opinion the number one thing to look for in a Hardbat is control. I know some people have said that "control" is a fabrication by manufacturers to dupe amateurs, but if you have (for example) a blade that is full of knots in the inside layers, or that the layers are not well glued, you will have a blade with very poor control. The ball simply will not go were you hit it.


Yep that seems to make sense.

Quote:
The game of hardbat is a game of control, being able to make the drop-shots, hit the ball at extreme angles, make good blocks. The next item is the speed of the blade. Some players like fast blades because their technique is good and can make the shots without having to make fast body movements. The slower blades are generally better for an all-round type of game.


Very interesting. My experience from the last few nights is this: My "normal" blade is a Tibhar Defence Plus. This is very light and very slow, but capable of quite a sudden acceleration. I play OX LP on one side, and inverted or SP with sponge on the other. I noticed with the hardbat I've borrowed, that the blade seems to be much faster. That is I need to hit the ball much less hard to get it on the table, and that when I swap back to my 'normal' bat I'm not hitting the ball hard enough. This interests me because I believe that the Euro Chopper is also quite a slow blade. This made me wonder if there was a variable I was missing.

I'm interested to get a hardbat setup of my own, and was pondering sticking something (Dr Evil, 799 or 802) on a spare Tibhar Defence Plus blade. As it happens I was already buying something for a friend, and managed to pick up a Joola All-Round Special for a bargain price, with Dr Evil on each side, so I'll start with that, but I might well put something on the TD+ too, to compare and contrast.

Quote:
These are some general opinions.

I will try to go to the UK later this year. Maybe we can play some Hardbat and drink a few beers afterwards.

CHEERS!


That would be a lot of fun. Thanks, and sorry again for my unfair response.

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 01 Mar 2014, 09:15 
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LordCope wrote:
...I did feel a bit annoyed, because I've done a fair amount of reading the history of the forum and I notice that you seem to pop up with the same recommendation each time. But I'm sure you meant well.


Like any manufacturer, he does still have a vested interest in selling you his product, so I wouldn't say he meant well, but more that he meant to cater to a potential customer. Not that there's anything wrong with making money, but it's not exactly an unbiased, third-party opinion when the person has something to sell you.

We've had a couple arguments on this forum revolving around this topic, since he had a voice in the December 2012 U.S. ban of classic hardbat rubbers in normal sponge events, which should have never been the case when the product he sells is related to said ban, i.e. - if people legally using Hock, Leyland, and other rubbers (including myself) are suddenly forced to switch to a different hardbat rubber, then his product is there as a prime replacement. There's a reason he advertises every time a hardbat topic pops up.

Last time I called him out on it, he said I was a troll and changed his story to say he protested the ban (which he may do again in this thread), but I still have the email he sent me as head of the U.S. Hardbat Advisory Committee when I complained to USATT which contradicts this. If I'm called a troll again or a liar, then I have no qualms in comparing statements from said email with statements made on this forum. Then again, I'd be willing to just make peace if there was a simple admission that he wants to sell more of his product (nothing wrong with that), so he had no issue at all with the classic rubbers being banned.

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 03 Mar 2014, 08:31 
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LordCope wrote:
What are the variables to look out for when selecting a blade for hardbat?

I usually play with a very slow blade, as a defender.

I own a 'spare' Tibhar Defence Plus - I could conceivably chuck 2 x OX SP on that for starters. Any reason not to? Should one look to an oversize blade? Or frankly does it not matter - just try it and evolve?


I'm a newbie so "variables" are difficulty as I'm trying a bunch of different things and gathering my research and spending some money...lol... "Defender" blades seem to work well as they let the ball sit more on the paddle and then rip it response seems good...

I would say give the Tibhar blade a go and "evolve." I've down that with a Butterfly Pro Grubba All- blade quite well; at least, that is what I think the blade is...lol...

"Oversize Blades are fun: I've been experimenting with a Hock & a Valor Premier "Big Stick" for now...lol... Somebody could Chime in this. I think, I heard, it is better for chopping but don't know. Anywho, gives me more surface to hit the ball...lol...

Don't we all just want to Evolve???..lol...

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 03 Mar 2016, 19:06 
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I wonder what blade's size is more appropriate for hardbat close-to-the table blocker\hitter to play against modern table tennis? Regular or oversized (with the assumption that weight is very close)? A conventional wisdom is that regular size blades have better manoeuvrability while oversized blades have larger sweet spot. Can anyone share with his experience?
I tried Dr Evil both sides and it was really fun to play against sponged players. So I'm thinking about playing more with hardbat setup. My priorities (in descending order): hitting, blocking, looping, chopping. Any thoughts?

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 04 Mar 2016, 06:33 
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gnopgnipster wrote:
Classic hardbats are very different from modern sponge bats. In the "old" days a good heavy bat (ie. Slazenger, Barna, Hock...) was considered to be a professional Bat. Light-weight bats were considered for amateurs.


I imagine if you want a RACKET (rather than a BLADE) that weighs about what a modern RACKET weighs, you need a much heavier BLADE, since hard rubber weighs so much less than does modern sandwich rubber. Not sure you need to go this far, though..

Iskandar


Last edited by iskandar taib on 04 Mar 2016, 17:46, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 04 Mar 2016, 06:47 
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Yes, I agree with you about the weight. To my mind 100 g+ blade is the way to go (at least for myself). My current pips setup is on a lighter side (about 150 g) so heavy blade + 2 OX won't be much different. I can get very heavy blade both in regular size and oversized one. The question is what size is better for me?

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 04 Mar 2016, 08:09 
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It's all a matter of personal preference. Myself, I like a very light paddle. So I tend to go for a light blade and the lightest rubber I can find (currently that's Dr. Evil). There is a big difference in the weights of the various rubber sheets.

There are some really great classic style blades out there right now. Alberto makes some beautiful blades under the Valor label - I own two. And Don Varian is making real Hock blades again from the original 1949 Hock wood - they are very well made and surprisingly affordable. I own several. I like the idea of using a handmade blade built to my specs, especially considering how ridiculously expensive the assembly-line blades have gotten. We are one of the few sports where you can get a handmade one-of-a-kind artisan blade for less money than a cookie-cutter one made in China.

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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 04 Mar 2016, 17:48 
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Wow.. where's he getting the Hock wood from? Was there a supply of it stored somewhere?

Iskandar


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 Post subject: Re: Hardbat Blades
PostPosted: 04 Mar 2016, 22:53 
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Scottgordon, thank you for your feedback! Judging from your signature, you play mostly hardbat, right? Could you tell me what blades are more common between hardbat players you play with who tend to be on offensive side (hitters, blockers)? Modern blades or classic ones? Regular sized or oversized? Stiff and hard or soft?
Unfortunately, there is no harbat players where I play and consequently I can't get any advice from more experienced players in my area. :(

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