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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2014, 00:40 
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larrythoman wrote:
Debater wrote:
If it's the same with the balls and you were a manufacturer would you pre check the balls that you were going to send to the ITTF for testing to make sure they met the known requirments before they were packaged up and sent to the ITTF? And then once they've passed, would you consider selling what was left safe in the knowledge you've got 10yrs before they are checked again?

According to the linked PDF:

1. Quality control is done through the ITTF random testing:
•  Balls will be bought directly in retail shops by ITTF, randomly and anonymously, and will be tested in an ITTF laboratory.
•  Repeated failure to meet the tolerance ranges is resulting in suspension of the approval.
•  Starts summer 2014 for plastic balls and is implemented on a 2-year basis (was always in place for celluloid balls).


So apparently for balls, the ITTF randomly buys approved balls from a retail source and then tests them every two years. If those balls fail the ITTF tests, the ITTF would then suspend approval of that brand. But that PDF also says that suspended brands can continue to be used for another 6 months after suspension. It doesn't say anything about how a brand can be unsuspended.

Larry


I would simply say that the random samples they are buying are not like the random samples I bought. I wonder why?

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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2014, 01:59 
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mynamenotbob wrote:
The best part is when they gloss over the unnecessary .6mm ball size increase by calling it a change in "diameter specification" then paying it off with the line "ITTF does not change any rule but improves the requirements."

The maximum plastic ball diameter allowed is only .1 mm greater than the maximum celluloid diameter allowed. The minimum diameter is within the celluloid range. In fact, the spec for the plastic ball diameter, 40.0-40.60 mm is *tighter* than for the celluloid ball at 39.50-40.50 mm. According to the slide, the actual measurements of the plastic balls were within the specs for the celluloid balls. And the bit about not changing any rule is a true statement. Not sure what your beef is.


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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2014, 03:13 
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It's "Freedom Balls" for citizens of the ITTF.


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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2014, 06:23 
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GMan4911 wrote:
mynamenotbob wrote:
The best part is when they gloss over the unnecessary .6mm ball size increase by calling it a change in "diameter specification" then paying it off with the line "ITTF does not change any rule but improves the requirements."

The maximum plastic ball diameter allowed is only .1 mm greater than the maximum celluloid diameter allowed. The minimum diameter is within the celluloid range. In fact, the spec for the plastic ball diameter, 40.0-40.60 mm is *tighter* than for the celluloid ball at 39.50-40.50 mm. According to the slide, the actual measurements of the plastic balls were within the specs for the celluloid balls. And the bit about not changing any rule is a true statement. Not sure what your beef is.

Let's talk facts. The celluloid balls we played with for 14 years were on average between 39.6mm and 39.7mm in size. Now that the ITTF has "improved" the specs, the average ball is 40.2mm.

Do the math.

This is a .5mm or .6mm ball size increase from what had been the standard size no matter how the ITTF tries to spin it, i.e. "It's still a 40mm ball, we didn't change the size, we just improved the specs."

There was no reason to rewrite the specs other than to sneak in a ball size increase during the confusion surrounding an unnecessary change in ball material. Diversion tactics are standard ITTF procedure.

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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2014, 07:01 
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Baal wrote:
I would simply say that the random samples they are buying are not like the random samples I bought. I wonder why?

My guess would be that they haven't gotten around to purchasing many retail samples yet. Perhaps it's different in Europe and Asia, but I'm having a terrible time getting any poly balls here in the US other than Nittaku SHA and Joola Super-P. Many online US dealers don't have any poly balls listed on their websites. A couple of dealers have now confirmed to us that they have Donic and XuShaoFa balls in stock, and we've ordered them, but to date we haven't received them yet. So if it's anywhere near this difficult to get poly balls in Europe (or wherever ITTF buy the balls from) I can understand that perhaps they haven't tested too many different brands yet. And we still have 1.5 months of Summer left too, of course.

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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2014, 10:58 
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larrythoman wrote:
Baal wrote:
... And we still have 1.5 months of Summer left too, of course.Larry


Not quite Larry.This is what Adham Sharara said in this forum on Tue Jun 26, 2012 12.22am:

"However, being cautious and the BoD, being the custodian of technical matters at the ITTF, has decided to side with caution and use the new Poly balls as of 1 July 2014, which is a borderline date that may coincide with the lack of availability of celluloid balls. We have been assured by the manufacturers that we will have a sufficient supply of the celluloid balls till that date, and that the Poly balls would be perfected by that time. In fact, the Poly balls for general market distribution will be made available as of the first half of 2013. So there will be plenty of time (more than one year) to provide feedback and make the necessary adjustments to the production machines to get the balls as close as possible to the current celluloid balls."

1.5 months of summer to go, actually transpires to minus 1year plus behind schedule. And that's for the "perfected" ball. We still have to wait until 2016 for that probably. Not counting any time to get used to them - which incidently from the feedback I've had shouldn't take long to do.


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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2014, 22:58 
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mynamenotbob wrote:
GMan4911 wrote:
mynamenotbob wrote:
The best part is when they gloss over the unnecessary .6mm ball size increase by calling it a change in "diameter specification" then paying it off with the line "ITTF does not change any rule but improves the requirements."

The maximum plastic ball diameter allowed is only .1 mm greater than the maximum celluloid diameter allowed. The minimum diameter is within the celluloid range. In fact, the spec for the plastic ball diameter, 40.0-40.60 mm is *tighter* than for the celluloid ball at 39.50-40.50 mm. According to the slide, the actual measurements of the plastic balls were within the specs for the celluloid balls. And the bit about not changing any rule is a true statement. Not sure what your beef is.

Let's talk facts. The celluloid balls we played with for 14 years were on average between 39.6mm and 39.7mm in size. Now that the ITTF has "improved" the specs, the average ball is 40.2mm.

Do the math.

This is a .5mm or .6mm ball size increase from what had been the standard size no matter how the ITTF tries to spin it, i.e. "It's still a 40mm ball, we didn't change the size, we just improved the specs."

There was no reason to rewrite the specs other than to sneak in a ball size increase during the confusion surrounding an unnecessary change in ball material. Diversion tactics are standard ITTF procedure.

Is there some website that maintains the *actual* measurements of the 40 mm ball from all manufacturers for the past 14 years that you can direct me to?


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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2014, 23:10 
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Just measure some celluloid balls yourself.

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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2014, 01:11 
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GMan4911 wrote:
Is there some website that maintains the *actual* measurements of the 40 mm ball from all manufacturers for the past 14 years that you can direct me to?

I don't know of a website, but this is what I've observed first hand and is inline with many others who have observed the same thing. Here's my recent measurements of Nittaku Premium Celluloid balls compared to 3 different brands of poly balls:

Brand/Model Stars Avg Dia SD Dia Hi Dia Lo Dia Avg Wgt SD Wgt Hi Wgt Lo Wgt Smpl Size Material
Double Fish 3 40.19 0.034 40.32 40.12 2.73 0.009 2.75 2.70 49 Poly
Double Fish 1 40.15 0.035 40.28 40.00 2.73 0.017 2.76 2.67 50 Poly
Nittaku SHA 3 40.16 0.061 40.35 40.03 2.77 0.013 2.79 2.75 12 Poly
Joola Super P 3 40.16 0.048 40.24 40.02 2.79 0.011 2.80 2.76 24 Poly
Nit. Premium 3 39.70 0.040 39.81 39.54 2.75 0.012 2.77 2.74 24 Celluloid

As we can see from this chart, the average diameter for seamed poly balls is 40.15~40.19 as compared to the celluloid ball that is 39.7. In each case, the average is in the range of 0.15~0.20 above the minimum size limit (39.5 for celluloid, 40.0 for poly). I also recall the 38mm celluloid balls having a similar size range--37.65~37.70mm. So in all cases of the various ball sizes that our sport has used, the balls tend to end up being manufactured at @)0.15 to 0.20mm above the minimum.

I theorize that the manufacturers learnt long ago that players prefer, and therefore buy, balls that are sized toward the lower limits of the allowable size range.

Larry

Sorry for the way the chart came out. I had it all nicely aligned in columns but after submitting to the forum, all the spacers between columns are removed. Does anybody know how to keep charts aligned properly in this forum?


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2014, 01:22 
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Debater wrote:
larrythoman wrote:
Baal wrote:
... And we still have 1.5 months of Summer left too, of course.Larry


Not quite Larry.This is what Adham Sharara said in this forum on Tue Jun 26, 2012 12.22am:

"However, being cautious and the BoD, being the custodian of technical matters at the ITTF, has decided to side with caution and use the new Poly balls as of 1 July 2014, which is a borderline date that may coincide with the lack of availability of celluloid balls. We have been assured by the manufacturers that we will have a sufficient supply of the celluloid balls till that date, and that the Poly balls would be perfected by that time. In fact, the Poly balls for general market distribution will be made available as of the first half of 2013. So there will be plenty of time (more than one year) to provide feedback and make the necessary adjustments to the production machines to get the balls as close as possible to the current celluloid balls."

1.5 months of summer to go, actually transpires to minus 1year plus behind schedule. And that's for the "perfected" ball. We still have to wait until 2016 for that probably. Not counting any time to get used to them - which incidentally from the feedback I've had shouldn't take long to do.

Are we talking about the same thing here? My 1.5 months of Summer referred to the ITTF obtaining samples of balls in the retail marketplace. Your comments about my post referred to the general timeline of development of the poly ball as outlined by Sharara 2 years ago. What has one got to do with the other?

Larry


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2014, 01:47 
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Yes we are talking about the same thing and the connection is simple. Adam Sharara intended to give "us" aproximately 18 months to get used to the new ball - a ball which was supposed to be perfected.

You dismiss that. From reading your response you seem to think 1.5mths will be enough time to test a ball which the ITTF have had to change the technical leaflet requirements to accommodate.

Are you sure that you're right 1.5 months will be long enough for serious competitve players - especially as the balls are still not widely available and by the time they are, there will be a lot less time than 1.5 mths to get used to them.

From the feedback I've had from testing, most people felt it would only take a couple of weeks to get used to them so you may well be right. But if it does work out ok, it's inspite of not because of the way this whole incident has been handled.

And for those intersted, not one of the players who tested the balls for me (25 in total, with different age, experience and ability) said they felt the need to go out and buy new rubbers to accommodate the new ball - a couple said they'd review the situation in 2 months or so. For people who might want to do that Larry, your season will have already started. National Associations should have been making these decisions along time ago AND been pushing the ITTF to keep them updated on the progress and the reasons for change. Too many are reactive and not pro active. That's my real point here.


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2014, 07:13 
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Debater wrote:
Yes we are talking about the same thing and the connection is simple. Adam Sharara intended to give "us" aproximately 18 months to get used to the new ball - a ball which was supposed to be perfected.

You dismiss that. From reading your response you seem to think 1.5mths will be enough time to test a ball which the ITTF have had to change the technical leaflet requirements to accommodate.

Are you sure that you're right 1.5 months will be long enough for serious competitve players - especially as the balls are still not widely available and by the time they are, there will be a lot less time than 1.5 mths to get used to them.

From the feedback I've had from testing, most people felt it would only take a couple of weeks to get used to them so you may well be right. But if it does work out ok, it's inspite of not because of the way this whole incident has been handled.

And for those intersted, not one of the players who tested the balls for me (25 in total, with different age, experience and ability) said they felt the need to go out and buy new rubbers to accommodate the new ball - a couple said they'd review the situation in 2 months or so. For people who might want to do that Larry, your season will have already started. National Associations should have been making these decisions along time ago AND been pushing the ITTF to keep them updated on the progress and the reasons for change. Too many are reactive and not pro active. That's my real point here.

Well, I think we're on entirely different wavelengths here. You're talking about your negative reaction to what Sharara said about the development timeline for the poly balls. None of my comments in this thread were about that. My 1.5 months comment was directed at the fact that the ITTF said they would begin their random testing of poly balls in the Summer of 2014, and that now in the middle of August there is still 1.5 months left for them (Summer ends 9/22) to begin that random testing--nothing more and nothing less.

I understand your points--and don't disagree with them--but those are different from the single point that I was making with my 1.5 months comment. My comment had nothing at all to do with players getting used to the new ball or what associations should or should not have been or are doing in relation to the new ball. You raise valid concerns about those issues and I am not in any way disputing those concerns. I was merely pointing out that the ITTF has another 1.5 months (actually a little less than 1.5 months) to begin the random testing phase of poly balls they have previously approved, before I would say that they were being untruthful about that particular claim.

The ITTF testing I'm talking about here is the re-testing that occurs when the ITTF randomly selects one or more of their approved balls, goes out to a retail store, buys samples of that ball anonymously, and then re-tests those balls to be sure that balls being sold by that manufacturer still meet ITTF standards. The manufacturer originally supplies ball samples to ITTF during the initial approval stage, so the manufacturer has the opportunity to cherry-pick their very best balls and submit those for approval. But the ITTF does this random testing after the initial approval to help ensure that the balls being sold to customers meet ITTF standards. If they don't, then approval is suspended for that brand. A random, anonymous quality assurance program if you will.

For instituting such a quality assurance program, I would actually have to salute ITTF. Now let's see if they indeed follow-through on that statement and begin that random testing of balls that some are reporting as having very low standards and they can't understand how such poor quality balls were approved in the first place. Of course, I don't know how any of us will know if they begin that random testing phase unless we see a ball listed as suspended on the ITTF list.

Maybe they should add a test for breakage?

Larry


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2014, 07:28 
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Then your point is different to what I interpreted. Sorry. By the way I don't consider my reaction to what Adham Sharara said as negative. Just different. If everyone had a different opinion and because it was different it was considered negative, no one would dare speak up for fear of being perceived to be "negative". My comment is free feedback for the national associations - be proactive not reactive where the ITTF are concerned.

Regarding the testing by the ITTF, they are very vague in their test speak - their targets for testing in business terms are not SMART. I've done my own testing. Joola don't put on their plastic ball packaging "selected quality" - wording which is on their celluloid ball packaging. From my testing of the Joola Super-P ball I've a very good idea of why.


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2014, 08:37 
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Debater wrote:
By the way I don't consider my reaction to what Adham Sharara said as negative. Just different.

I agree. That was my own judgement coming out and getting in the way of sound reasoning. I do apologize.

Larry


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2014, 11:50 
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Thanks for the ball diameter measurements. Very interesting.

I suspect that as potentially difficult as this is for us as players, it is a lot harder for the manufacturers. ITTF is going to have to be somewhat flexible with them because what choice do they have? This is especially the case for companies like DHS that have contracts to supply balls for ITTF. It may welll be that getting the new materials to work out was not as easy as some people assume.

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