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PostPosted: 01 Jan 2010, 06:26 
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I had a 30 minute session with the Dawei Grass 20 (red) this afternoon. The top-sheet is the ordinary 388D; the sponge is a white cross between paper and rubber, or so it seemed to me - very inert, for when you push your thumbnail in it, the imprint will not go away. Top-sheet and sponge can be very easily separated (just pulling softly was enough).
I had a Dawei 388D (OX, red) for comparison on my TSP Combi Def blade; the Grass I put on my Friendship W-1. The Grass plays completely different from the regular version. It is slower than the OX; if the OX is rated 6, the Grass must be 5.5 or less; it seemed even slower than the Yasaka Phantom 012 I had on the W-1 before. So it took me a few minutes before I could chop the balls over the net... But when I got used to it, it was very nice. Lots of control, lots of backspin too (the most effective chop was forward and slightly downward, coming under the ball very fast, like Chen Weixing does when he takes the ball in front of him), easy to vary the amount of spin by changing the angle of the blade (more horizontal means more spin, more vertical means less). It is not a rubber for classic chopping far from the table, it is too slow for that; but at mid-distance you can chop anything back, so you don't need to back off far. This makes coming to the table for counter-attack much easier, and the rubber is surprisingly fast when you hit with it. Because of the grip attacking is easy and there is some reversal if you want to (an open bat will produce most reversal, a closed bat with a pseudo-loop will produce dead balls or some topspin). Blocking is very easy, very controlled; you can take the speed off fast balls and put them where you want them. Flicks are easy too and produce good topspin against backspin. Pushing needs to be done aggressively. All in all it reminded me of the Yasaka Phantom. I guess it will be even more effective on an all-round blade (like maybe the Dawei Matrix) in combination with a fast and spinny inverted rubber (Dawei Inspirit?). In a couple of days I'm going to try it in matches. Will report back on that...

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PostPosted: 01 Jan 2010, 06:58 
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your reviews always make me want to try new rubbers out . :D
I have just gone to Globe999 2.2jap sponge for my backhand (mainly as I do some coaching) but I do like slower pips with some sponge

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PostPosted: 01 Jan 2010, 07:50 
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Sounds interesting...how thick was the sponge-like substance?

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PostPosted: 01 Jan 2010, 08:02 
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Great review, thanks Kees!

It does sound a lot like the Hallmark Phoenix...

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PostPosted: 01 Jan 2010, 08:05 
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Dwruck, it is 1.0 mm. At first I thought it was like the white papery sponge of the Feint Long III, but then I noticed it is much firmer, almost like polystyrene. Haggisv says it is like the sponge of the Hallmark Phoenix. It seems Giant attaches the Long and Dragon with a similar sponge (called Soft version). It has a shock/speed absorbing effect, but you can easily hit through it because it is so soft, and then you have the speed of the wood of your frame and the top-sheet; that must be why it chops or soft-blocks rather slow but attacks pretty fast.

Rodderz wrote I
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have just gone to Globe999 2.2jap sponge for my backhand (mainly as I do some coaching)

You could always use the 999 on your forehand :wink: ... I used the Grass with a Dawei Super Power 2008 1.8 mm on the forehand.
When I do rally-training as coach/trainer, I often change to penholder grip in order to avoid using the LP backhand.

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PostPosted: 01 Jan 2010, 08:09 
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Haggisv wrote:
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It does sound a lot like the Hallmark Phoenix...

Our posts crossed... I would think the Grass is a bit faster than the Phoenix, at least in attacking. Why did you give it up again? I forgot.

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PostPosted: 01 Jan 2010, 15:12 
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Sounds interesting...my resolution for 2010 was to play with the same setup all year long, but now you're tempting me. :wink:

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PostPosted: 02 Jan 2010, 01:54 
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Keys how does this differ in feel and character to regular 388D-1?

Doug I thought you went all 2009 with the same setup? In fact, except for your change to Macro and your flirt with SP, hasn't your setup been basically the same all along lol? I think you're the least EJ on this forum haha (oh and thats much more a compliment than a slur)!

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PostPosted: 02 Jan 2010, 11:53 
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I had the Palio Macro ERA most of the year; started out with LKT Torrent, but switched to the Palio in the spring.

The big change for the me was on the backhand. Ended 2008 with short pips. Switched back to long to start 2009. Played a lot of 2009 with the Dawei 388D-1 Quattro with 1.0 mm sponge for a good portion of the year. Switched to OX in September. So while the rubber remained the same, I had what I consider a pretty major change from 1.0 mm sponge to OX.

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PostPosted: 02 Jan 2010, 21:37 
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Reb wrote:
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Keys how does this differ in feel and character to regular 388D-1?


I've never played with the D-1, but as it is even faster than regular 388D, the difference with Grass20 should be greater. Grass20 will feel awfully slow compared to D-1 in 1.0 mm and it will have less reversal on blocks. Possibly the amount of backspin produced in chops will be greater. And I'm quite certain you'd feel it has a lot more control than D-1. But D-1 is a rubber for aggressive allround play, high-paced and deceptive; I don't think the Grass can be effectively used for that type of game, or maybe on a very fast carbon frame... but even then there are lots of rubbers better suited to aggressive play. Although it is slow, I doubt that it was designed for use close to the table. If Dawei had intended it for such use, it would have made more sense, perhaps, to attach this sponge to the Saviga V or D-1; I gues they didn't do that because an essential characteristic of those rubbers is their relatively high speed. The Grass will be most effective, I think, for (mainly) chopping defense at mid-distance combined with (occasional) controlled counter-attack. For instance, it blocks very easy, with some reversal, but it lacks speed in its returns to make them dangerous; it will only produce real speed if you hit hard, forcing the ball to bottom out. It doesn't seem to be designed to be an upgrade for D-1 or Saviga V, but really for regular 388D, increasing control (compared to 388D on its regular sponge), increasing grip (without increasing sensitivity to incoming spin), and slowing down the speed, so it will be able to produce more backspin when chopping (also against low-spin/no-spin balls), more/easier spin-variation, and better placement (although that is very good with regular 388D too). If Dawei's goal was to make this rubber as similar to Feint Long III as 388D is to Feint Long II, they have succeeded - in my opinion.

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PostPosted: 02 Jan 2010, 21:39 
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Kees wrote:
Haggisv wrote:
Quote:
It does sound a lot like the Hallmark Phoenix...

Our posts crossed... I would think the Grass is a bit faster than the Phoenix, at least in attacking. Why did you give it up again? I forgot.


I didn't really give it up, but I changed style to a close-in blocker, where OX is more effective.

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PostPosted: 02 Jan 2010, 22:06 
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:idea: i would like to see this with thinner sponge,0.5-0.6

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PostPosted: 03 Jan 2010, 00:39 
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Thanks for the extra points Keys, makes a lot of sense to me. Sounds like Grass 20 is an even slower version of Meteor 8521 perhaps. Off my stiff carbon blade I get fair reversal and reasonable speed in returns but still controllable. I haven't used the sheet of 388D-1 I have here cos its probably too fast for where I headed and its red and Im into black LP now. But I am going to give it a try sometime still when I find time. I just have the impression its going to be like Miracle Monkey for some reason, which was only average IMO. Sounds like Grass 20 might be just too slow for me though.

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PostPosted: 03 Jan 2010, 01:40 
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Reb wrote:
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Sounds like Grass 20 is an even slower version of Meteor 8521 perhaps.

It is not just slower, but not-bouncy either; inert, really. Big difference in feel! I think the Grass has better reversal, too.

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PostPosted: 03 Jan 2010, 01:43 
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Dazzler wrote:
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i would like to see this with thinner sponge,0.5-0.6

Wouldn't work, probably; there has to be a minimum thickness to absorb incoming speed, I guess that is why Dawei manufactures it in 1.0 mm only (as far as I know). Thicker sponge would be interesting, but likely way too slow to be of use for anything at all.

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