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Handmade blades by Levi Made in Romania

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Chopper88 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chopper88 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/30/2016 at 9:23pm
Thanks Johnny for that information, how can I order something with the specific I need ? Thank you again
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/30/2016 at 9:30pm
Originally posted by Chopper88 Chopper88 wrote:

Thanks Johnny for that information, how can I order something with the specific I need ? Thank you again
Just PM me.
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/30/2016 at 9:37pm
Originally posted by AndySmith AndySmith wrote:

It's the off season for me, so that means it's time to experiment.  I've been eyeing up Levi blades for a while and so I have dipped my wobbly bits into the water.  Johnny was a big help and is still being a top bloke while I work on getting a second blade made up.

Anyway, I got one of the koto-basalt-limba-kiri blades seen above.  I've never had a basalt blade before so I kept an open mind about the whole experience and I certainly wasn't expecting big things.  This is one blade on a list (an obviously large list owned by an idiot) of things to try over the summer.  But it's come as a big surprise.

Physicals:

The materials are obviously very high quality and the basic construction is top notch.  There are no sharp edges anywhere and the outer ply is an absolute beauty.  The handle is a chunky flare which is super comfortable, the wings are unobtrusive, and the whole thing is very nice to pick up and wave around.  The finishing touches aren't as detailed as OSP, SoulSpin or Ross Leidy and it gives a rustic charm to the blade rather than the super-slick logos and CNC detail madness.

Playing

I'd say the basic speed was around the upper edge of Off-, slightly slower overall than a Viscaria, a tick faster than a WSC.

There is a bit of flex in there, and a small, smooth feedback (more noticeable on slightly off-centre hits).  I'd say the flex is near what you get with a heavier Viscaria.  The sweet spot is pretty big, but not as large as some of the recent enormous SZLC or Xiom blades.

The throw is medium, very consistently so in fact.

The hand feel is the best part of the package really, it might come from the basalt I suppose.  It's a LOT nicer in terms of feel when compared with any koto-alc blade I've ever used.  The ball feedback is noticeable but very mellow and mild, smooth like melted easter egg dripping down your chin.  It's dreamy really, it doesn't feel like the usual vibration at all, more like a perfectly tuned hum.  There is no hollow feeling here, it's very solid.

The contact feel is softer than you might expect for a koto outer, but the outer ply is quite thin and (again) the basalt may be contributing to this.  This takes away a little of the bounciness you'd expect with a stiffer koto-outered blade.  However, the easy power in the lower/medium gears in direct play is still there and blocking is very predictable too.

When looping a little harder the feel becomes a bit softer and it's super easy to get bite on the ball.  On really hard loops the power increases a little and playing from slightly further away is good.

Smashes can be a bit fierce.  The top-end speed is high.

Overall

I really wasn't expecting to like this blade as much as I do -  it was a dark horse, but ended up a great surprise.  The overall feel is somewhere in between what you'd usually get from limba and koto (more like a softened koto I suppose), there is a touch of flex but otherwise very solid, power is useful without dominating, and loop feel is very forgiving.  The overall package is harmonious with all rough edges smoothed away from the performance.

I wouldn't recommend it to lovers of highly flexy blades, or people who need hard, bouncy or uber-power blades.  But if you've got an ALC blade and wished it was a bit softer or more forgiving with much better feel, or perhaps have something like a Korbel and wanted a bit more ooomf and a bigger sweet spot, I really recommend that you try one of these out.  For a mixed-purpose, Off-, general topspin blade, I can't think of a better example.

It reminds me most of the best Boll Spirit I ever had, which was a heavy black tag and was unusually soft.  The Levi blade is a bit slower than that was but has the benefit of remarkable feel in comparison.
Great review my friend, like always. Respect and thanks!
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Chopper88 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/30/2016 at 9:38pm
Thank you
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AndySmith Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/31/2016 at 5:01am
Originally posted by Matt Pimple Matt Pimple wrote:

Thanks for the nice review Andy.
How would you compare it with the OSP-Carbon blade you recently tested? Based on your review it sounds like the Levi blade is less flexy, more direct or crisp and a tad faster.

Yes, that's it really.  The OSP V-CRWi has more flex, is a bit softer.  Top-end speeds are similar, Levi Basalt has more low-mid range power.  Both amazing blades - OSP V-CRWi suits a full-time looper more, Levi Basalt does all things well.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Pimple Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03/31/2016 at 11:25am
Originally posted by AndySmith AndySmith wrote:

Originally posted by Matt Pimple Matt Pimple wrote:

Thanks for the nice review Andy.
How would you compare it with the OSP-Carbon blade you recently tested? Based on your review it sounds like the Levi blade is less flexy, more direct or crisp and a tad faster.


Yes, that's it really.  The OSP V-CRWi has more flex, is a bit softer.  Top-end speeds are similar, Levi Basalt has more low-mid range power.  Both amazing blades - <span style="line-height: 16.8px;">OSP V-CRWi suits a full-time looper more, Levi Basalt does all things well.</span>

Thanks Andy! I am intrigued by the Levi blade...maybe I need to pm Johnny...
Alser Allround 5 ST; DHS H3 Neo 2.1, Dr. Neubauer ABS2 2.5

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04/12/2016 at 8:42am
Another Levi blade koto-basalt-limba-kiri but with special scaly koto outer ply:



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:16am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/18/2016 at 8:01am
First Levi combo blade with basalt:

Ayous-basalt-limba-kiri-limba-basalt-koto, 5.8 mm thickness, 87g.



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:19am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote AndySmith Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2016 at 8:31am
Originally posted by Johnny Erasure Johnny Erasure wrote:

First Levi combo blade with basalt:

Ayous-basalt-limba-kiri-limba-basalt-koto, 5.8 mm thickness, 87g.


OK, I put my hands up - this one is mine.  And I played a match with it last night, OVE on BH, OVA on FH.  In my case, the ayous side is for my FH.

My thinking here is this - I've always aimed to have different shot qualities on my FH and BH wings.  I prefer spin and arc on my FH, and more block/hit/drive on my BH.  I've bounced around between many blades over the years and found some which work well on one wing, but not the other.  Every so often I'll find a blade which hovers around the middle and I've been mostly happy, but I always miss some aspect somewhere.  If I use a Boll ALC, I appreciate the cripsy direct feel on BH but miss the sensation of dwell and grab on the FH.  If I use the Crest AR+, I love the loop feel on FH but the BH feels too soft.  And so on.  Of course, I totally understand that this is a (stupid, illogical) personal quest and I don't advise anyone else to go down the road I travel.  The likely destination is to never be 100% happy with anything.  The issue is solved by sticking with a blade and compromising, adjusting stroke technique and being more reasonable with expectations.  But I didn't want to do that.  I am unreasonable, stubborn, and too used to switching equipment to simply...stop.  

I recently tried a Levi Basalt blade, and was blown away.  I can't recommend them highly enough.  I've already gone into some detail above about these blades, and I stand by those comments.  Anyone who wants something like a Butterfly ALC blade, but don't want to sacrifice feel, should seriously consider trying one.

But I always have the nagging doubt in my mind about what could be done.  Here is a custom blade maker who could possibly humor me in my ridiculous quest for ultimate, vain satisfaction.  So I got in touch with Johnny about working with Mr Levi on a custom blade with two different outer plies.  We went through a few different ideas and proposals (I was going for Koto/Limba initially, and some inner basalt options were discussed)  until Mr Levi eventually suggested ayous on one side.  I'm actually a big fan of ayous outers on my FH side (think hinoki softness but without the catapult), but I was concerned about how a thin ply would work in this case.

Anyway, the results are excellent.  I had a session last night and it's ended up as being the exact thing I was hoping to achieve.  I think if the original idea of koto/limba had been pursued, the result would have been too little variation between the two sides to be noticeable.  The ayous side is still a subtle difference, but is definitely noticeable and has just the features I was wanting - a little more softness, a little more dwell, and a slightly higher and shorter arc from the resulting shot.  This essentially reinforces the properties I want to have on my two wings, and I found it made everything feel that little bit easier to execute.

But let's not kid ourselves.  This is an intensely personal project for me, and the results could simply be my own projection.  What I can say for sure is that Mr Levi has delivered another superb blade of high quality (somehow, each basalt blade I've ordered always ends up being 86g - spooky).  That I'm so happy with the results is just good news for me.  My thanks go out again to Johnny for organising this for me, and obviously to Mr Levi for putting the time and effort into the project.

And so now, I will simply...stop.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote lineup32 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/31/2016 at 1:46pm
Nice to to Andy and others giving Levi a chance to show his high level blade making at a reasonable price.  When I was doing research on Levi at a Romanian TT forum before my first order there were pages of customers providing positive feedback.  Johnny is a great resource and helpful in international orders.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/06/2016 at 3:43am
The fastest blade OFF+ with basalt and Cpen handle made by Mr. Levi:

Cedar-Cedar-Basalt-Kiri-Basalt-Cedar-Cedar, 6.4 mm thickness, 87 g



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:22am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/22/2016 at 11:06am
A new composition 7 ply with Textreme 80 made by Levi:

Limba-Textreme 80-Ayous-Ayous-Ayous-Textreme 80-Limba, 5.8 mm thickness, 88 g



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:25am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote W0LovePP Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/22/2016 at 4:59pm
What is the dimension of the straight handle?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/22/2016 at 6:00pm
The standard ST size are: 100 mm (lenght) x 29 mm (width) x 23 mm (thickness) but you can choose what sizes you want.

Edited by Johnny Erasure - 10/15/2016 at 2:51pm
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2016 at 2:46am
Mr. Levi make all Red + Black blades. You can find here Excuisite Line blades made 5 to 7 layers natural wood with composite: http://www.redplusblack.com/exquisite-line.html.
Here you can find blades All Wood from 3 to 7 special selected natural wood layers: http://www.redplusblack.com/all-wood-series1.html


Edited by Johnny Erasure - 10/04/2016 at 3:02am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Simon_plays Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2016 at 10:15am
Where can we buy the red + black blades? It's a great name for a table tennis brand but it's difficult to search for on the Internet because you get so many unrelated search results. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote AMonteiro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/04/2016 at 10:20am
Originally posted by Simon_plays Simon_plays wrote:

Where can we buy the red + black blades? It's a great name for a table tennis brand but it's difficult to search for on the Internet because you get so many unrelated search results. 

TableTennis11 has them. Two models.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/06/2016 at 3:29am
A classic OFF blade 5 ply allwood with a classic ST handle:

Limba-Spruce-Ayous-Spruce-Limba, 5.8 mm thickness, 86g



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:27am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/15/2016 at 2:54pm
A special OFF blade 7 ply allwood with a beautiful FL handle: Limba-Limba-Ayous-Ayous-Ayous-Limba-Limba, 6.4 mm thickness, 88g



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:31am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote ttspirit Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/21/2016 at 8:34pm
Hello table tennis friends,

this is my first impression of a blade from Mr. Levi and Johnny Erasure, so I want to give a little feedback. I also want to thank you Johnny and Mr. Levi for this lovely gift. It's a real nice blade.

 I wanted a offensive 5-ply blade with Limba-Spruce- Ayous-Spruce-Limba composition and a thickness of 5.8 mm with natural kind of handles. I was given a blade which is at the moment the best custom made blade you can get at an attractive price. This blade is also much better than all the standard blades you would get from all the known manufacturers from the catalogues. I think nobody could do it better at the moment with that kind of enthusiasm and with a intensity like this. I was impressed by many things like the smooth and evenly glassy surface. There are still for example the very beautiful and natural handles made out of Mahagony wood. I was in love with this kind of making blades like Mr. Levi does. You can feel the intuition and commitment of the blade maker. I was placed in a time of good old Stiga blades from the early times. Why do I say that ? The blade gives me a feeling and a good control and a good speed at the same time like just the old blades gives you.

So please go on Mr. Levi and Johnny doing blades like this. You are the best.

Many regards, ttspirit


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote W0LovePP Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/21/2016 at 8:46pm
Could you share the thickness of each layer, including the core?


Thanks,
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10/22/2016 at 1:31am
Originally posted by W0LovePP W0LovePP wrote:

Could you share the thickness of each layer, including the core?


Thanks,

Limba, spruce = 0.6 mm
Ayous (core) = 3.4 mm.
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/10/2016 at 7:52am
Same OFF blade 5 ply allwood with a slightly thinner ST handle and a little bigger head size (151/158 mm):

Limba-Spruce-Ayous-Spruce-Limba, 5.8 mm thickness, 89g




Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:36am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Pimple Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/10/2016 at 10:42am
Originally posted by Johnny Erasure Johnny Erasure wrote:

Makore-Limba-Ayous-Ayous-Ayous-Limba-Makore, 6.4 mm thickness, 88g

What was the idea here of using Makore as outer ply and what are its characteristics? I have never heard of this wood and had to google it. It seems fairly hard.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/10/2016 at 1:14pm
Originally posted by Matt Pimple Matt Pimple wrote:

Originally posted by Johnny Erasure Johnny Erasure wrote:

Makore-Limba-Ayous-Ayous-Ayous-Limba-Makore, 6.4 mm thickness, 88g

What was the idea here of using Makore as outer ply and what are its characteristics? I have never heard of this wood and had to google it. It seems fairly hard.
The idea was to Mr. Levi and Makore has characteristics between limba and koto. Makore it's very good as outer ply.
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Pimple Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/10/2016 at 2:58pm
Interesting on the Makore...thanks Johnny!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/11/2016 at 6:21am
A Combo 6 ply blade prototype especially for long pips with ST handle:

Spruce-Limba-Unidirectional Carbon-Kiri-Limba-Linden, 5.7 mm thickness, 85g, normal head size 150/157 mm.



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:38am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/17/2016 at 4:14am
Last blade with scaly koto and aramid carbon, 7 ply, OFF speed, very stiff blade:

Koto scaly-Aramid carbon-Limba-Kiri-Limba-Aramid carbon-Koto scaly, 5.8 mm thickness, 88 g



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:44am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/09/2016 at 12:38pm
Another Levi blade koto-basalt-limba-kiri but with normal koto outer ply, a special order to 92g:



Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:54am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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Johnny Erasure View Drop Down
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Joined: 07/08/2013
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Points: 2466
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Erasure Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/11/2016 at 10:42am
A 7 ply OFF blade with Unidirectional Carbon which create a powerfull blade but with a very good feeling and a huge sweet spot:

Spruce-Limba-Unidirectional Carbon-Kiri-Unidirectional Carbon-Limba-Spruce, 5.8 mm thickness, 150/157 mm head size, 86g




Edited by Johnny Erasure - 05/14/2018 at 5:48am
Blade: TB ALC, ZJ SZLC
Rubbers: FH Tenergy 05
BH Tenergy 05
Feedback: http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=63937&KW=Johnny+Erasure&PID=764628&title=feedback-for-johnny-erasure#764628
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