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Double Day Valiant Loop King Review

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    Posted: 06/07/2015 at 6:38am
Should it be possible to call an ALC Blade a "Loop King"?  I tend to hate carbon blades but I was offered one to review by a friend at a reasonable price.

I will spend the next week answering this question and let you know.

Appearance (6/7/2015)

(Video added 6/8/2015)



The blade is definitely a high quality ALC blade.  I don't use ALC blades usually so I really can't compare it to Timo Boll ALC.  The ST handle I am using is different from the Timo Boll ALC though and a bit thinner than I would prefer  (with rubbers, the blade is head heavy).  The one I got weighs 89g.  The head is 161mm by 151mm.  It's about 6mm thick.  It's similar to a Timo Boll ALC I think with the main difference being that a Koto outer ply is replaced by an Anegre outer ply.  Anegre is harder than I would usually like, but it is an outer ply that I have used on the Yasaka Extra and Grubba blades so I have no problem with it unlike Koto, which I almost feel allergic to even when I don't play that badly with it.


Initial Tests  (6/7/2015)

I put on my spare Adidas P7 rubbers and took it to the club.  Immediately, I could see the advantage of this blade over my usual wood blades - this is a clear OFF blade, no compromises.  It felt so good that I wanted to play with it.  Against my better judgement, I moved my Tenergy 05 sheets onto it.  I will be playing competitive matches with it.  I went 4-3 today in matches I played with it.  Given I was coming from ALL+/OFF- blades, my control suffered on defensive and offensive shots, but it was much easier to put the ball by people with sheer speed.

One of my clubmates plays with a Timo Boll ALC FL with T05 and T80.  I will exchange blades with him and loop before making more detailed conclusions.  I was impressed by the looping quality, but again, it makes the most sense to compare this with the ALC Butterfly blades before closing this review out.

I am not a fan of detailed reviews of blades which go into line by line descriptions of strokes which are largely technique dependent.  Blade speed tends to have a universal effect on strokes.  What's more important is whether I (and maybe you) would feel comfortable with a blade and why.

Comparison with a Timo Boll Spirit (6/10/2015)

Alas, no one in my club has a Timo Boll ALC.  The juniors use Timo Boll ZLCs (a different and excellent blade in its own right).  One of my club mates does have a Timo Boll Spirit with Tenergy 05 on both sides.  I tried it - it was lighter than my blade and seemed faster - not sure whether it was because it was easier to swing or just faster.  The owner felt it was faster than my blade too,  So maybe my blade is really an OFF-/OFF blade with a power kick on some harder strokes.  That would give the Loop King name better context.

Concluding Thoughts (until I find a Timo Boll ALC with T05 to compare) (6/10/2015)

I like the blade a lot.  It fits my looping focused style very well and is now my main blade.  That said, it was heavier on the head with Tenergy 05 than a Timo Boll Spirit and that balance might not sit well with some people.  The blade might also be too slow for lovers of the Timo Boll Spirit/ALC blades.  That said, if you like to play heavy topspins with good placement and control, this is a blade for you.


Edited by NextLevel - 06/11/2015 at 1:13am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote asifgunz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/07/2015 at 9:38am
Was it Schen who came across a double day blade with zlc on one side and alc on the other. Ever since then, this brand caught my attention. Looking forward to your review


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 42andbackpains Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/07/2015 at 3:17pm
Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

Should it be possible to call an ALC Blade a "Loop King"?  I tend to hate carbon blades but I was offered one to review by a friend at a reasonable price.

I will spend the next week answering this question and let you know.

Let the party begin....whoop whoop....sorry getting too excited...LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote asifgunz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/07/2015 at 3:25pm
Careful now, Mr. 42 . We would hate to see you get injured out of excitement


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote schen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/08/2015 at 12:02pm
Thanks for the post NL!  I am curious to see how you rate the Loop King against the TB ALC.

And asifgunz, I've PM'd you!


Edited by schen - 06/08/2015 at 1:45pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 42andbackpains Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/08/2015 at 5:24pm
NL, what do you think of the finish quality of the blade? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/08/2015 at 5:27pm
I will post some Youtube video before ruining the blade with my technique.  I won't take the rubbers off though.  The packaging/box was excellent (probably overkill) and the finish was as good as any Butterfly blade I remember, probably better.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 42andbackpains Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/08/2015 at 5:35pm
Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

I will post some Youtube video before ruining the blade with my technique.  I won't take the rubbers off though.  The packaging/box was excellent (probably overkill) and the finish was as good as any Butterfly blade I remember, probably better.

Thanks NL...

Better than Butterfly....Thats a high standard. Now waiting if it plays better than the Timo.

Pics, youtube and more thoughts are appreciated. I have some EJ issues....Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/09/2015 at 6:31am
Well, no one showed up to my club today so it will likely be Wednesday or Thursday before I get a fuller blade review and compare to the Timo ALC and ZLC.  Tenergy 05 should be on all the forehands so it should be straightforward.

I added the video view of the blade though.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/09/2015 at 9:59am
Originally posted by fatt fatt wrote:

I can't wait the verdict about a question I am sure I am not alone to think about: "can this Valiant Pro ALC at $83 beat in performance the $121 TB Spirit or the $135 TB ALC". I bet "yes" is the answer.

Well, I believe Double Day do have a TB ALC competitor/clone.  So it's really not about beating it.  It's just more about blade quality and seeing how they are different.

I also don't believe in such nonsense as "beating the performance".  Blades are personal things - as long as they are not unreliable or badly made, what suits you may not suit me.  But technique is the king that rules everything - you need that to be right before you even investigate what the blade is about.


Edited by NextLevel - 06/09/2015 at 10:01am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/09/2015 at 8:27pm
I am doing this review largely to give people an idea of the quality of the blade. The concept of outperforming is not a part of it. Hope that explains why the lecture is required. Now back to our regularly scheduled review before the rude interruption.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote asifgunz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/09/2015 at 9:06pm
To each his own.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote haggisv Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/09/2015 at 9:34pm
Who actually makes this blade NL?


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/09/2015 at 9:39pm
Originally posted by haggisv haggisv wrote:

Who actually makes this blade NL?




I believe Double Day is an OEM in Taiwan. They probably produced the Timo Boll ALC for a while as well (look at their Winner blade).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 42andbackpains Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 1:33pm
Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

Originally posted by haggisv haggisv wrote:

Who actually makes this blade NL?




I believe Double Day is an OEM in Taiwan. They probably produced the Timo Boll ALC for a while as well (look at their Winner blade).

Maybe someone can get some history/background info of Double Day. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote asifgunz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 1:34pm
Schen met with the owner of Double Day during his visit. Maybe he would know more


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote schen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 1:58pm
The father and son carpentry team behind Double Day was the former OEM for very famous Japanese table tennis brands for over 20 years.  

Although the specific companies they made blades for is confidential, let's just say that when they stopped being an exclusive OEM for a particular brand, that brand started putting silver tags on the bottoms of their handles instead of the black ones to signify the change in partnership and manufacturing.

TT collectors will probably understand what I mean by "black tag."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 2:12pm
an OEM should be able to duplicate a design they manufactured for a brand, but could they design any new blades without the acquired expertise?  Quality is one thing but how they play maybe another.  Or is it just a matter of slabbing together  certain materials (wood / fiber / carbon)?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 42andbackpains Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 2:19pm
Originally posted by schen schen wrote:

The father and son carpentry team behind Double Day was the former OEM for very famous Japanese table tennis brands for over 20 years.  

Although the specific companies they made blades for is confidential, let's just say that when they stopped being an exclusive OEM for a particular brand, that brand started putting silver tags on the bottoms of their handles instead of the black ones to signify the change in partnership and manufacturing.

TT collectors will probably understand what I mean by "black tag."

Nice...so are you saying these blades will be in the black tag quality. How did you like your penhold with the zlc/alc combo?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote schen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 2:37pm
Originally posted by tom tom wrote:

an OEM should be able to duplicate a design they manufactured for a brand, but could they design any new blades without the acquired expertise?  Quality is one thing but how they play maybe another.  Or is it just a matter of slabbing together  certain materials (wood / fiber / carbon)?

Well they aren't in the business of making clones like Yinhe and other Chinese brands.  They are a Taiwanese brand, with ethics and quality more in line with Japan.

The DD gear I have are their own take on blades.  They also produce high quality 1-ply blades, using kiso hinoki and meniki among other cypress woods, but I did not bring back any samples of those with me.

I am currently testing the ZLC/ALC terminator and the ALC winner (koto/alc).  NextLevel is reviewing the third blade of the trio, the ALC loop king.  I will have my own impressions of the other blades after I spend more time with them.

If anyone else is interested in trying a new DD blade at discount, please PM me, as I am soon to be the exclusive distributor of Double Day in North America.  I am trying to get an idea of the market interest and impressions of the blades before I begin moving larger volumes to North America!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 2:41pm
Originally posted by schen schen wrote:

Originally posted by tom tom wrote:

an OEM should be able to duplicate a design they manufactured for a brand, but could they design any new blades without the acquired expertise?  Quality is one thing but how they play maybe another.  Or is it just a matter of slabbing together  certain materials (wood / fiber / carbon)?

Well they aren't in the business of making clones like Yinhe and other Chinese brands.  They are a Taiwanese brand, with ethics and quality more in line with Japan.

The DD gear I have are their own take on blades.  They also produce high quality 1-ply blades, using kiso hinoki and meniki among other cypress woods, but I did not bring back any samples of those with me.

I am currently testing the ZLC/ALC terminator and the ALC winner (koto/alc).  NextLevel is reviewing the third blade of the trio, the ALC loop king.  I will have my own impressions of the other blades after I spend more time with them.

If anyone else is interested in trying a new DD blade at discount, please PM me, as I am soon to be the exclusive distributor of Double Day in North America.  I am trying to get an idea of the market interest and impressions of the blades before I begin moving larger volumes to North America!

Schen,

If you go to the page for the Winner in the links that fatt provided, and you try to translate the page to English, you get a style for the winner called "Attack".  This makes sense.

If you go to the page for the Loop King and try the same translation, the same thing says "flurry", which may be "hurricane" for all I know.  What is the intent in English?


Edited by NextLevel - 06/10/2015 at 2:45pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pondus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 2:43pm
Welcome back, Schen Smile Let's play soon.
Also, do you know where DD is having their blades manufactured?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 2:46pm
" I am soon to be the exclusive distributor of Double Day in North America."

Congratulations.  Hope we will have a new good and cheaper alternative to the unreasonable prices being charged by certain brands currently.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote schen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 6:54pm
Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

If you go to the page for the Loop King and try the same translation, the same thing says "flurry", which may be "hurricane" for all I know.  What is the intent in English?

I believe it translates to what most companies call the "quick attack" style.  More emphasis on speed as opposed to spin and designed for at the table play I suppose.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote schen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/10/2015 at 6:56pm
Originally posted by Pondus Pondus wrote:

Welcome back, Schen Smile Let's play soon.
Also, do you know where DD is having their blades manufactured?

Thanks!  I'll be at the Learning Tree club this evening for the adult classes if you happen to be around!

And Double Day blades are manufactured in Taiwan.  Double Day's office, warehouse, and factory are all in the same building.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/11/2015 at 1:11am
Originally posted by schen schen wrote:

Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

If you go to the page for the Loop King and try the same translation, the same thing says "flurry", which may be "hurricane" for all I know.  What is the intent in English?

I believe it translates to what most companies call the "quick attack" style.  More emphasis on speed as opposed to spin and designed for at the table play I suppose.

Despite being thicker and using Anegre, it's actually slower than a Timo Boll Spirit.  So it's possible for a lighter style.  

Initial Review completed.


Edited by NextLevel - 06/11/2015 at 1:12am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cole_ely Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/28/2015 at 6:52pm
Until you play with it in a tournament, you don't really know how you'll like it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote berkeleydoctor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/28/2015 at 10:51pm
NL, it's funny that you're going from wood blades to carbon and im going the opposite direction LOL

maybe we'll both switch back again soon
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2015 at 7:09am
Originally posted by cole_ely cole_ely wrote:

Until you play with it in a tournament, you don't really know how you'll like it.

I already did, if you read my review.  I played well with it. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2015 at 8:48am
Originally posted by fatt fatt wrote:

so that's it? ok thanks.

The weight of the blade should be part of the op (of course we know from your current signature that it is 89g but if you change setups the info will be gone).

What I learn from your review is since kiri or paulownia ( core in the tbs and tb alc) has a 0.25 to 0.28 density and your blade's sycamore core is twice as dense, if we consider that koto and anigre work about the same on the outer plies then your blade should be faster at equivalent weights and plies thicknesses; but in the movie we see that the core of your blade is definitely on the thick side; that tells me the arylate carbon in that loop king could fall into or close to the soft carbon category; the woody feel with a strong sweet spot, unless the thick and dense sycamore makes it just too stiff.

Either way it seems the blade is a strong candidate for any control looper or allround player who wants some kick; the wise man's carbon blade.

Is it really your main one today? 


I switch back and forth but tend to favor the Evolution MX-S.  It taught me that Tenergy 05 Requires a Faster blade than what I currently use.

The real problem was the head heaviness.  That I could not cope with because it required me to be higher up on the blade/handle than I would like to be for my loose wrist strokes and that was not ideal for my FH/BH transition.  The power was ideal however - I was able to make some awesome shots from near mid distance  to the table that I usually just don't make.  With easy swings too.  I have one video where I just did some crazy things to the ball and in my mind, I was like... wow!  I usually can't do that as confidently with my all wood blades.

https://youtu.be/An5iXgG9ej0?t=240

(to place the video in context, I have been trying to work through a recommendation someone made about my finishing position for my backhand loop and I didn't really understand what he wanted at first, but I figured it out finally - watching that video was the key last step).

I saw Filip Szymanski's setup and he uses my favorite OFF wood blade (Force Pro) because he loves the control (hahahaha - sounds like me) but he did a handle modification with sandpaper on the conical flare to make it a straight handle.  Food for thought... where's that sander...










I like putting heavy topspin on the ball...
Mazunov
FH: TBD (MX-S, C1)
BH: C1
Lumberjack TT, not for lovers of beautiful strokes. No time to train...
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