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Upcoming Joola X-plode Review

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    Posted: 11/27/2009 at 2:49pm
Hey guys,

Just got me a sheet of Joola X-plode in red MAX. i'll be adding in a review of how it performs for me in the next week or so (school break so no time for the pong).

What i can do right now is put in some short insights on the rubber through my first impressions.

It's got a nice package to it from what i see so far. The sponge is yellow and tenergy-like much like Andro Hexer and those other german types. the rubber feels a lot more flexible b/c when i glued it to my Joola Viva blade, the rubber actually stretched out a bit with very little effort. The topsheet seems very grippy (barely tacky) and just the way I prefer it. The topsheet itself might be a little thin though so it might fall apart on me in a couple of weeks of intense playing (I'll let you know if that happens).

I just had a brief hit with it so far so i can't say much. i tried it on my fh and the loops are nice and crisp with a decent follow through. so far i haven't had any problems with the ball slipping accidentally. i'm actually going to use it for my backhand and it also plays well on the bh.

the blocks are a lot better (compared to bryce speed). i don't have any problems with the ball dying into the net with medium slow shots. bh loops seems really nice although it might be spinny at times and then almost no spin at other times. this could be due to my inconsistent stroke or maybe something specific within the rubber (like you can actually control spin and no spin bh loop?)

as for serves, i haven't really done much with it. so far i've only done a couple of backhand underspin serves and i'm thinking that it doesn't give you as much spin and bryce speed.

I'll give you guys a more detail review when i get to hit with it more. for now, i've uploaded a few pictures =).











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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BHDoom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/27/2009 at 4:15pm
can you compare the topsheet to express 1 when you get a chance if you are familiar?  thanks
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ohhgourami Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/27/2009 at 6:45pm
interested in what you have to say about this rubber.  a comparision to express 1 would be nice.  my old coach is currently using this rubber.  he says its like a hybrid of chinese and euro rubber.  i believe he still uses a straight arm fh to hit with this rubber. LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/28/2009 at 1:54am
the topsheet on xplode is way more grippy than express 1. the sponge firmness is much harder with xplode.

put it this way. you won't be able to do all topsheet spin/touch shots with this (or not reliable...but more reliable than express 1) but if you make the ball dig in, expect more spin, more speed, and a lower arc.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote the-mezz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/28/2009 at 1:35pm
I've never hit with anything sized MAX. Could you explain why you prefer it?

Thanks!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/28/2009 at 9:29pm
i like the increased speed and spin potential with the max. plus i won't have to bother with swithing from 1.9 to max later on. i also feel like i have enough skill to control the rubber well enough =)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DreiZ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/28/2009 at 10:43pm
Originally posted by tpgh2k tpgh2k wrote:



PS: does anyone know how to embed pictures within a post? i tried clicking the button 'insert image' but it says that i don't have enough access for it =(.

cause ur not cool enough. jk lol
 
so when u upload pictures to their website u can just copy the img link it gives, or if u have the direct link to ur picture which u can find by right clicking on the pic and copying the URL and then putting that url in between [''IMG] URL ["/IMG] (no ""quotes)
 
but yeah looking forward for the review.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote LobbedYoud0wn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/29/2009 at 7:02pm
thanks. they were really advertising this at the 09 baltimore teams
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/30/2009 at 1:03am
i can see why now....it's now my new bh rubber, i've put down the bryce speed and now replaced it with xplode...quite a beast i would say.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BHDoom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/30/2009 at 1:48am
Originally posted by tpgh2k tpgh2k wrote:

i can see why now....it's now my new bh rubber, i've put down the bryce speed and now replaced it with xplode...quite a beast i would say.
think i am going to give it a run now on my bh, need to find something and stick with it soon
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/30/2009 at 8:29am
good luck finding something that fits you well TJ. i was playing at lucky shoals earlier sunday and it worked very well on my backhand. i might as well give my short review of how it played today then...

it's definitely harder than bryce speed. that could be a good thing or a bad thing (good for me). it's not as spinny but a lot more manageable for some reason. you would think that with the almost tacky topsheet it would be a spin demon on the bh but i have a feeling that bryce speed would give you more spin for bh loops.

the plus side that i really loved about this rubber was the blocking game, it was so much better compared to bryce speed for me. it gives you a whole lot more margin for error on those.

away from the table i had no problem finding my range with this rubber at all. i had some really nice bh loops from at least 12 feet away.

pushes are going to ok, nothing special nothing too bad about it. just make sure you take care of your angle and motion and its like any other rubber. one thing i did notice is that since it's a fairly hard rubber, it's not too bouncy in the short game (a plus for me).

now for serves, it's not going to create crazy spin. so don't expect this thing to give you outright easy serve winners. you better rely on your placement and ability to disguise the spin.

as for speed, i think that it's a tad slower than bryce speed. this is also a plus for me since it means that i will be better able to control the darn thing.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ohhgourami Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/30/2009 at 8:47am
so would you say that express 1 is faster than x-plode?  iv hit with bryce speed and its much slower than express 1, or maybe im confused on something.

i know my old coach is using this and he says it has tons of spin and power, much more than express 1.  could be different since its for his fh.

since you also have used energy, how would you compare energy to x-plode?  energy does play well but id like it to be more durable and grippy.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/30/2009 at 10:51am
with everything constant, i believe that xplode would be faster than express 1. the sponge is harder and tenergy-like which really does make it take off. using both on the fh (express 1 and xplode) for testing purposes, bryce speed seems to have a much better catapult to the ball.

so i would rate bryce speed as a 9, explode as 8.5 and express as 8 for speed.

as for energy, i've only used the xtra verson of it so it was super soft. loud cliking and not that spinny. it would bottom out so much that it was annoying to me. i wasn't as good as i am now so i can't really tell you if it would perform as well or not.

but for durability, it won't be as durable as express b/c the topsheet wears out really fast (energy) and it's definitely not as grippy as express.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote melarimsa Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/30/2009 at 2:31pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/30/2009 at 5:35pm
i'd give xplode an 8 on the spin scale when i play with it on my bh. i could really care less about the spin and speed (as long as its fast enough). i just like it b/c i can block with it consistently enough and can bh loop from away the table. over the table bh drives were surprising. good crisp feel to it.

so far so good...come wednesday/friday i'll really get into it and see if there are any issues with the rubber.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BHDoom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/08/2009 at 9:47pm
i had a few hits with this rubber since a practice partner is testing it on the BH, seems legit, spinnier topsheet than express 1, looks almost barely tacky as opposed to the super grippy tenergy, hit with a red sheet and it didnt seem too tacky for BH, softer sponge than tenergy and not as high throw as tenergy, i hit with the max which i think is 2.3, it felt nice, i will probably get my own sheet soon
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/08/2009 at 10:06pm
you might want to consider using it on both fh and bh. it's pretty good on the fh too. ball sinks in and takes off really well. flies much lower than tenergy like you said. it has good penetrating power too.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote melarimsa Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/08/2009 at 10:56pm
I tried it, I like it a lot, but there is only one mising point in my book :( . It is too fast for me, just plain to fast, but I loved a spin that you can create with ... If someone is interested, I have one for sale in black 2.0mm brand new ...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Blade Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/13/2009 at 11:37pm
I just got a sheet of X-plode max black and I think it might be defective. It feels soft, much softer than Joola energy green power. The sponge is really, really porous  and kind of mushy. When I first tried to counter with it it was very slow. When I tried to loop with it the ball just fell into the net.  The top sheet is barely grippy. The throw seems totally erratic even while just counter hitting? It feels like the ball goes almost directly to the wood without really hitting into it. Are the sheets you other players are using like this?

I usually use rubber cement to attach rubber to my blades, but I didn't want to take a chance on damaging this rubber so I used a water based glue  (some people say even the low voc content of rubber cement can damage these new rubbers).Is it possible it was just a bad glue job?

I've never had any rubber play so strangely. I can send it back to the vendor for an exchange if I am willing to pay the shipping costs, but that's kind of a hassle. Should I try to glue it on again and give it another try or from what I've described does it sound like it's a defective sheet?

Any thoughts would be appreciated!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/14/2009 at 12:17am
what blade are you using and what glue are you using? it sounds like you didn't press down on the rubber enough to have it stick. it really sounds like a bad glue job to me.

and with the topsheet, i feel like you mean that it's barely 'tacky' b/c you should only be barely able to run your finger across the rubber topsheet.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Blade Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/14/2009 at 1:49am
I make my own blades, it's a five ply offensive with a little flex and medium hard feel. As to the glue, I'm not sure it was a friend's bottle one of the European brands that has a sponge applicator on the top. I put a decent layer on the blade (which is sealed) and two coats on the sponge. It seemed to be well attached, but it was my first time using a water based glue.

After I pulled it off I put a sheet of 2.0 platin soft on the blade and it played faster spinnier and more predictably. I'm hoping it was a bad glue job, although I wouldn't be surprised if it was defective, it does happen from time to time.

tpgh2k what did you use to glue yours on with, how many coats, did your sponge absorb a lot of glue. Also I don't know if you're familiar with Tenergy, but the X-plode sponge has much bigger air pockets on the sheet that I received, was yours the same?

thanks for your response,

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ohhgourami Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/14/2009 at 3:21am
Originally posted by Blade Blade wrote:

I make my own blades, it's a five ply offensive with a little flex and medium hard feel. As to the glue, I'm not sure it was a friend's bottle one of the European brands that has a sponge applicator on the top. I put a decent layer on the blade (which is sealed) and two coats on the sponge. It seemed to be well attached, but it was my first time using a water based glue.

After I pulled it off I put a sheet of 2.0 platin soft on the blade and it played faster spinnier and more predictably. I'm hoping it was a bad glue job, although I wouldn't be surprised if it was defective, it does happen from time to time.

tpgh2k what did you use to glue yours on with, how many coats, did your sponge absorb a lot of glue. Also I don't know if you're familiar with Tenergy, but the X-plode sponge has much bigger air pockets on the sheet that I received, was yours the same?

thanks for your response,

Blade

2 coats!!!!  no 1 will do and make sure it is thin and even.  let it dry completely and i mean completely.


as for X-plode, my coach hits it with a chinese style loop hehe.  i tried and it works, not bad of a rubber, just not right for me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/14/2009 at 11:27am
i would be using xplode on both sides of my YEO if i didn't like bw2 so much =p
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote debraj Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/14/2009 at 12:55pm
Originally posted by Blade Blade wrote:

The sponge is really, really porous and kind of mushy. When I first tried to counter with it it was very slow. When I tried to loop with it the ball just fell into the net. The top sheet is barely grippy. The throw seems totally erratic even while just counter hitting? It feels like the ball goes almost directly to the wood without really hitting into it. Are the sheets you other players are using like this?I usually use rubber cement to attach rubber to my blades, but I didn't want to take a chance on damaging this rubber so I used a water based glue (some people say even the low voc content of rubber cement can damage these new rubbers).Is it possible it was just a bad glue job? I've never had any rubber play so strangely. I can send it back to the vendor for an exchange if I am willing to pay the shipping costs, but that's kind of a hassle. Should I try to glue it on again and give it another try or from what I've described does it sound like it's a defective sheet?Any thoughts would be appreciated!Blade


hmm...

did you mean the throw was unpredictable depending on the force you applied?...non-linear?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/14/2009 at 2:32pm
to be honest blade....the only reason the ball should be going all over the place is b/c you're most likely not timing it right. the trajectory is about medium (bryce speed would be low). on that note, i prefer blocking with xplode on both wings more than bryce speed.

the rubber is most certainly grippy. i can spin the ball really well with it. i'm just using some x-glue to stick on the rubber. since you didn't know what kind of glue you were using, i'll assume that you didnt know how to apply it well enough to get a proper layer all over.

it sounds like your rubber had some dead spots (ie: some places didn't even stick).

take a picture of the rubber and i'll tell you if its defective or not. most likely it's just the same one everyone else uses and has no defects.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Blade Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/14/2009 at 5:49pm
Thanks for the feedback guys, I'll try a new glue job and see if the results are different. It was a rainy day when I tried it, but my other rubbers Joola EGP and JO platin played normally.

T0 answer debraj's question: the throw was very non-linear.

In terms of the timing of my strokes, the other sheets on the blade were playing fine. I had another player try it (we're both in the 1800-2000 usatt range) and he had the same problems.

I'll see if I can get a good picture to post.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/14/2009 at 6:47pm
very strange indeed then....where did you buy the xplode from? directly from joolausa or from a reseller?

or was it a used sheet?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Blade Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/15/2009 at 3:10am
Here's an update to my strange X-plode experience. I bought some tear mender and reattached the rubber sheet to my blade and went to the club for a couple of hours tonight to hit with it. The good news is for the first half hour that Iplayed with it the playing characteristics were on par with what others had claimed about the rubber. I was happy to see that the throw angle was lower than tenergy and that I could smash with reasonable consistency, although my EGP is much better in this regard. However, after about 45 minutes I began to get some of the random responses - balls falling off the rubber while looping or leaving the rubber in a slow and dead fashion.

My best guess is that the humidity from the rainy weather along with me still not being able to achieve and optimal water glue job are the culprit to the problem. It seems that the X-plode rubber is sensitive to humidity at least more so than my EGP. At this point I don't think that the sheet is defective since it will perform normally for a while. I'm really tempted to clean off the blade and rubber and glue it on with rubber cement, because I never have any of these water glue problems when I use it. I don't play tournaments so the only reason I didn't use rubber cement initially is because I was afraid it might damage the rubber.

Thanks for the input guys, especially tpgh2k!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/15/2009 at 10:28am
there's no reason why you can't use rubber cement. i'd just suggest that you apply the glue slowly and in a thin layer so that it doesn't sink into the sponge so much.

all rubber are sensitive to humidity in the end. that might be why it dropped off the first time you tried it too.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tpgh2k Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/15/2009 at 11:43pm
it's be decided. xplode is now my new permanent backhand rubber. paired with the YEO, it is truly a deadly weapon (for me).

speed wise, i find it just perfect...not too fast, not too slow. it allows me to pretty much block comfortable no matter what kind of ball comes my way. when i try to block strong loops, i miss sometimes but that's more my fault than anything else.

the sponge hardness is just great. i can counterloop so well with this it's scary.

i even managed to beat an 1800 player 3-0 earlier tonight =x. so yea, i think i've finally found something that truly works for me now =D
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