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PostPosted: 23 Jan 2023, 04:33 
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After taking a 2 and a half year hiatus from playing, I returned to active playing around Thanksgiving in November. I'm still shaking off the rust but I am feeling better than I was a couple of months ago.

Here is a video from a practice session on Friday. I am using an Xiom 36.5 ALX blade with Stiga DNA Dragon Grip on the forehand and Victas Curl P5V with a SpinLord Waran sponge in 1.8mm. I am trying to use long pips to hit offensively like short pips, block like short pips, chop block like long pips, and chop like long pips in that order of priority relative to my game with chopping being a real "plan D" situation. This custom backhand rubber I have made is very unique. I really love it and it seems to come as close to my goals as I can expect but I'm curious about trying P5V on a VO > 101 sponge at some point. I'm not trying to write a full review right now, maybe after using them for 6-12 months, but I can happily answer any questions about my equipment if anyone has them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=934gr9GpfSY


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PostPosted: 16 Feb 2023, 06:23 
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Interesting. How is it going now? How does P5V compare to P4 and P1 if you have used those as well? thx

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PostPosted: 11 Mar 2023, 23:17 
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Dawg15 wrote:
Interesting. How is it going now? How does P5V compare to P4 and P1 if you have used those as well? thx

I apologize for the late reply.

So while I have never used P1, I started this experiment with P4 using the same Waran sponge.

P4 is better at chopping and chop-blocks. It also sends out flatter balls on attacks. However, because P4 has VERY soft pips that bend easily, attacks are slower and counter attacks are much less consistent. It being soft and slow, really helps to put on the breaks when chopping and chop-blocking but since I am trying to play with it more offensively, it just wasn't working for me.

P5 is better at pushing and can produce the most backspin of any long pips on pushes (but definitely not on chops). But the biggest reason I am staying with P5 is because it has very stiff pips making it much faster than P4 especially when combined with sponge. Counter attacks are much more consistent while still being pretty flat and dangerous, more than any short pip. Long pips are usually terrible at normal and offensive blocks, forcing you to usually need a chop-block. While P5 can't chop-block as well as most long pips, it can still do so better than any short pip and it more than makes up for it by being able to produce great normal and offensive blocks, something I have never experienced with any other long pip.

Since recording that video, I changed sponge to the DMS Firestorm Soft/Outkill sponge. The reason being is that Waran's current sponge, since they unfortunately changed sponges some years ago, plays better boosted and there is 2 problems with that.

1 - it makes the rubber/sponge combination thicker than the 4.0mm limit. Long pips can't go past 1.8mm because you need to allow a little room for glue. 1.9mm is playing with fire and 2.0mm is automatically illegal since even a microscopic layer of glue would technically put it past the 4.0mm limit. This is why I limit my sponge selection for my long pips to 1.7mm or 1.8mm only.

2 - When boosting, the playing characteristics change with every play session for about a month until it finally plateaus. I don't think it's good for developing your skill to have this constant change and once it finally plateaus, it has this empty feeling on harder hits that I don't like. Re-boosting is also a pain that shortens the lifespan of a rubber too.

I haven't had much of an opportunity to play recently but the couple of sessions I have had with the new sponge have left me satisfied. While not as fast as a freshly boosted sponge, it is faster and feels better than Waran sponge after the 1 month plateau. I am still open to the idea of testing different sponges but this current sponge seems very nice.

I hope this answers your questions. I'm more than happy to answer any others. I love talking about it to be honest.


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PostPosted: 12 Mar 2023, 00:11 
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I forgot to mention, I did briefly try the VO>101 sponge. It didn't work for me. Very fast and good shots were great but it doesn't have enough dwell time and I made way more mistakes than successful shots. Consistency is key so I stopped using it after 2 sessions.


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PostPosted: 13 Mar 2023, 22:23 
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Thank you for getting back to me and for sharing all the insightful info. I have also been experimenting with different sponges on LPs trying to find the right balance for my style. Hope your testing with the new sponge continues to go well.

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Gambler OS Kevlar | Yasaka Mark V 2.0 | SL Dornenglanz OX

Donic Defplay Senso Classic | Yasaka Mark V 2.0 | Butterfly Fent Long II 0.5


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PostPosted: 15 Mar 2023, 09:54 
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Dawg15 wrote:
Thank you for getting back to me and for sharing all the insightful info. I have also been experimenting with different sponges on LPs trying to find the right balance for my style. Hope your testing with the new sponge continues to go well.


For sure. It seems like you're trying to use more defensive sponges but I still like the idea of people using custom sponges in any way.

While I'm maybe a little curious about using custom sponges for inverted rubber, it is MUCH more difficult to combine an inverted topsheet to a sponge and also somewhat more difficult to remove an inverted topsheet from the sponge it's glued on.

Combining custom sponges to pips is significantly easier.

You might want to consider using the sponge from other defensive rubbers and combining it with the long pips of your choice. If you're using dornenglanz on a thin air zero sponge, I'm assuming you want to maximize reversal while still have a deadening effect from the sponge. I'm not sure of a better sponge than that. I used 1.5mm air zero sponge a long time ago and I remember it being pretty good at killing incoming speed.

But I've always wondered what it might be like combining something like CK531a with the super soft and slow Curl P4 sponge for a chopping game as an example.


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PostPosted: 15 Mar 2023, 23:25 
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GeneralSpecific wrote:

But I've always wondered what it might be like combining something like CK531a with the super soft and slow Curl P4 sponge for a chopping game as an example.

Same here, I like trying different combinations to see how different it plays. I have a sheet of CK531a that I will be trying at some point with a softer sponge, though not quite as soft as the P4 sponge. Softest I have atm is air lemon 35deg sponge to try. Although I do have the sponge that came off a Best Anti rubber which is very soft but not sure how soft it is exactly. It's very soft though, almost too soft for my taste with LPs lol. May be fun to give it a try at some point. I have a few others to test before I get to the CK531a though. Tested DTecs with a .6 Dawei sponge last night and will give it a little more time but first impression is that DTecs becomes very spin sensitive with any sponge added.

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Gambler OS Kevlar | Yasaka Mark V 2.0 | SL Dornenglanz OX

Donic Defplay Senso Classic | Yasaka Mark V 2.0 | Butterfly Fent Long II 0.5


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PostPosted: 15 Mar 2023, 23:27 
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.

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"Success is on the same road as failure; success is just a little farther down the road."

Gambler OS Kevlar | Yasaka Mark V 2.0 | SL Dornenglanz OX

Donic Defplay Senso Classic | Yasaka Mark V 2.0 | Butterfly Fent Long II 0.5


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PostPosted: 16 Mar 2023, 06:43 
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Dawg15 wrote:
Same here, I like trying different combinations to see how different it plays. I have a sheet of CK531a that I will be trying at some point with a softer sponge, though not quite as soft as the P4 sponge. Softest I have atm is air lemon 35deg sponge to try. Although I do have the sponge that came off a Best Anti rubber which is very soft but not sure how soft it is exactly. It's very soft though, almost too soft for my taste with LPs lol. May be fun to give it a try at some point. I have a few others to test before I get to the CK531a though. Tested DTecs with a .6 Dawei sponge last night and will give it a little more time but first impression is that DTecs becomes very spin sensitive with any sponge added.


Have you seen Andrea Aschi on youtube? He's able to get a lot of reversal. He uses Dr. Neubauer antispin but with a custom sponge from an Italian company called Spinlab. He's using the pink sponge but they have a few options.
Here is his youtube channel:
https://www.youtube.com/AndreaAschi

Here is the Spinlab website's sponge page. Fortunately they have an English option in the top right corner:
https://www.spinlabitalia.com/shop?lang=en&Category=Sponges


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PostPosted: 17 Mar 2023, 02:57 
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GeneralSpecific wrote:

Here is the Spinlab website's sponge page. Fortunately they have an English option in the top right corner:
https://www.spinlabitalia.com/shop?lang=en&Category=Sponges


Thank you for sharing! Pretty cool how the bounce a ball on each sponge to show how it reacts and the differences between them. I haven’t seen this before, but I do the same thing at home when I get a few sponges to test lol. Shipping to the US is a little steep but i may have to order a few to test anyway. Have you tried any of these sponges? I would mainly be interested in the red and pink and maybe yellow. Thank you again!

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Gambler OS Kevlar | Yasaka Mark V 2.0 | SL Dornenglanz OX

Donic Defplay Senso Classic | Yasaka Mark V 2.0 | Butterfly Fent Long II 0.5


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PostPosted: 17 Mar 2023, 09:13 
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Dawg15 wrote:
GeneralSpecific wrote:
Thank you for sharing! Pretty cool how the bounce a ball on each sponge to show how it reacts and the differences between them. I haven’t seen this before, but I do the same thing at home when I get a few sponges to test lol. Shipping to the US is a little steep but i may have to order a few to test anyway. Have you tried any of these sponges? I would mainly be interested in the red and pink and maybe yellow. Thank you again!


Yeah glad to help. I have never tried them but I watch all of Andrea's videos and he shows they work well. I also like how they sell a strong glue meant to attach inverted/anti topsheets to sponges.

The red looks especially good at killing speed. The pink seems to have a balance of good dampening for control while still being able to send back fast enough blocks to be threatening which is probably why Andrea is using pink.

The green and black are their "faster" sponges but they don't seem to have much bounce or glue effect to them compared to what I have been experimenting with. I'm probably better off with just harvesting sponges from rubbers that are already out there. Red and pink seem great for defensive play though.


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