Alex Table Tennis - MyTableTennis.NET Homepage
  New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - REVIEW: Re-Impact Rapier 44 by Tommy Z
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login
tabletennis11.com

REVIEW: Re-Impact Rapier 44 by Tommy Z

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
tommyzai View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member
Avatar
Senior Animator

Joined: 02/17/2007
Location: Prescott AZ USA
Status: Offline
Points: 8961
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote tommyzai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: REVIEW: Re-Impact Rapier 44 by Tommy Z
    Posted: 08/24/2019 at 12:59pm
Re-Impact Rapier 44: First Impressions by Tommy Zai


I've owned hundreds and hundreds of blades over the years, but only a few of them were custom-made specifically for me. Until now, a high quality, handcrafted, made-to-order Re-Impact blade has eluded me. I contacted their master blade designer, Achim Rendler. After he answered a few of my concerns and questions, I zeroed-in on the model best suited for me:


*Rapier 44

*Medium size, which is close to a standard oversized blade but asymmetrical at 162 mm x 162 mm.

*Made to order - I provided my finger, hand, and forearm measurements:

https://re-impact.de/rapier44.html#product_tabs_made_to_measure

*Special MCP handle system with Screw handle design . . . I figured . . . why not? It makes this blade even more unique in comparison to all others I've owned and used. It has a 45 degree twisted grip.


It cost more than the average mass production blade, but less than Butterfly’s high-end offerings.


I finally received my custom order. It took a few weeks, but in all fairness to Re-Impact, it was stuck in customs for a week. 


NOTE:  Creating these blades take time. They are being assembled by one master craftsman, not an assembly line. If you want a dream blade that is made specially for you . . . place your order and be patient. I'm also used to getting things right away, but that's not going to happen with a Re-Impact blade. In fact, if you get your custom blade really fast it probably isn't much of a custom blade, right? ;-)


 Initial thought . . . Whoa! It's a super light, medium round-ish oversized blade with a special handle notches and a swirl handle sized to fit my arm, hand, fingers. The craftsmanship is fantastic — a big step up from a mass production blade. I won't need to detail it before gluing-up. It has super smooth beveled edges on the wings and anywhere else fingers touch. I normally seal my blades, but this one came pre-sealed with a secret formula so I best not mess with it. Rubbers fit nicely. I imagine the extra-large oversized version might be problematic for some smaller racket coverings. It appears to have a two-layer balsa type core. The top plies are unique, and I have no clue what they are.


I glued up a 2.0 mm inverted on FH and OX LP on BH.


In play, this is an active, lively blade with excellent control. FH blocks/counters swimmingly, even against devastating loop drives. BH chop blocks and side-swipes with precision and touch. Many blades have subtle gears, but this blade boasts an obvious shift like jumping from second to fourth gear in a high performance automobile. The gears are engaged via aggression/power, and there is a noticeable catapult and brake-effect on both FH and BH. With my game, it's important that I control the pace and make my opponent uncomfortable. With Rapier 44, I am able to adjust the tempo on both sides of the racket, effortlessly dropping the ball short and driving it long. Even though this is not listed as a combination blade, I notice a difference between the two sides. Yes, my rubbers are dissimilar I'm a combination player. Still, I can feel a blade induced contrast. Upon a careful inspection, I wonder if the two layers of the core are different. There's something else about this blade that took me a while to understand. When I tilt the blade, it reacts uniquely. It's almost like a variation in degree transform it into a slightly different blade.


There is plenty of control throughout with more than enough speed for all-out attack. Normally, these balsa blades are associated with close-to-the-table pips play, and that's mostly how I’ll use it. However, taking a step back to mid-distance and blasting away with or without top or chop is equally delightful. I'm not a long-distance looper, so I can't say if this blade would be good for that style of play. If that's your game, and you'd like to give Re-Impact a try, I'd suggest checking out their OFFensive line. I previously hit with a specially designed Re-Impact Smart blade. I'm not sure about the speed rating, but I can tell you that that particular bat was an aggressive beast.


Throughout play, regardless of the type of stroke, gear, or angle . . . there is a lot of communication . . . ”talk” without unwanted vibration. The racket feels like an extension of my hand, especially thumb.


The sweet spot covers most, if not all, of the head. In short, the sweet spot is SWEET!


For those who know me, know that I struggle with an upper body disability. I'm often in pain, weakened, and recovering from various surgeries. I need a setup that promotes play, not hinders it. With this blade, I am able to play longer and more comfortably. My wrist, elbow, shoulder, and neck doesn't suffer as much, and I am ready to play again the following day. I asked Achim about this and he explained, “The counter pressure on the ball during the forward movement is reduced by the asymmetrical alignment of the club surfaces.” I'm not a scientist or engineer, but I can tell you that there is a difference and I like it!


Who is this blade NOT for? I’d say a two-winged looper who uses max inverted rubbers on both sides. Yet, having said that . . . the smaller size might work nicely. I’m not a looper, so who knows? There are no absolutes in table tennis with regard to matching equipment to players. I know a high level combo player who uses a “defensive” long pip on his FH, and he ONLY hits . . . not blocking. I also know an extremely handsome player (me) who uses a chopping rubber on his FH, and never chops! Yet, if thick blades bother you . . . this isn't for you. 


It took me a while to adjust to the screw handle design, which securely locks hand into position. I normally adjust my grip slightly with BH, FH, and various other shots. There’s a debate by many pros and coaches as to whether or not a player’s grip should move around during play or lock-in. I’ll give this handle more time and see how it goes. Worst case scenario for me . . . re-order with a straight or conical handle, then hide from g/f when bill arrives. ;-0


Well, that's it for now. I'm hopeful that this is THE ONE! Time will tell . . .


Regardless, I'm excited to play, and that's a good thing. I hope my initial impressions are useful or at least entertaining. Thank you, Re-Impact, for helping me keep the flame burning strong!!


For more info or ordering: 

https://re-impact.de/rapier44.html








Edited by tommyzai - 09/02/2019 at 12:53pm
For More Info, PM or Email me: [email protected]
Back to Top
drclaude1 View Drop Down
Super Member
Super Member
Avatar

Joined: 01/04/2008
Location: United States
Status: Offline
Points: 220
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote drclaude1 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/25/2019 at 12:21pm
Thanks for the nice review. Great looking blade ClapThumbs Up
Carbonado 290

Rakza7
Rakza7
Back to Top
p1ngp0ng3r View Drop Down
Super Member
Super Member
Avatar

Joined: 12/24/2005
Location: Netherlands
Status: Offline
Points: 183
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote p1ngp0ng3r Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/26/2019 at 7:55am
Thanks for the review.
Hope this blade will suit you fine.
HL3 - Fastarc C1 - Fastarc C1
Back to Top
kevo View Drop Down
Super Member
Super Member
Avatar

Joined: 01/16/2012
Location: ireland
Status: Offline
Points: 410
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote kevo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/26/2019 at 10:30am
Great review, Tommy, as per usual! 
Back to Top
Dr.Cho View Drop Down
Super Member
Super Member
Avatar

Joined: 10/07/2012
Location: FLORIDA
Status: Offline
Points: 271
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dr.Cho Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/26/2019 at 2:40pm
I like the handle, could that be cork under the veneer?

Rendler is the reason I started making blades.
Back to Top
Magic_M View Drop Down
Gold Member
Gold Member
Avatar

Joined: 05/31/2012
Location: Germany
Status: Offline
Points: 1844
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Magic_M Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/27/2019 at 2:01pm
Originally posted by Dr.Cho Dr.Cho wrote:

could that be cork under the veneer?
Yes, it is cork. Nearly all of his new blades have cork-plies.


Edited by Magic_M - 08/31/2019 at 1:26am
Back to Top
tommyzai View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member
Avatar
Senior Animator

Joined: 02/17/2007
Location: Prescott AZ USA
Status: Offline
Points: 8961
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tommyzai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/30/2019 at 9:59pm
There is definitely some sort of cork-ish ply in there!
For More Info, PM or Email me: [email protected]
Back to Top
aeoliah View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member


Joined: 11/18/2005
Location: Indonesia
Status: Offline
Points: 3153
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote aeoliah Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/02/2019 at 3:44am
Congratulations on your new blade ! How thick it is ?
Member of the Single Ply Hinoki Club
Virtuoso- , Acuda Blue P1.
Virtuoso CRWI, Acuda Blue P1




Back to Top
tommyzai View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member
Avatar
Senior Animator

Joined: 02/17/2007
Location: Prescott AZ USA
Status: Offline
Points: 8961
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tommyzai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/02/2019 at 12:11pm
Originally posted by aeoliah aeoliah wrote:

Congratulations on your new blade ! How thick it is ?

I don't have a metric ruler handy, but it must be 10mm . . . kind of like a one-ply hinoki JPEN . . . maybe a little thicker, but really light.
For More Info, PM or Email me: [email protected]
Back to Top
Magic_M View Drop Down
Gold Member
Gold Member
Avatar

Joined: 05/31/2012
Location: Germany
Status: Offline
Points: 1844
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Magic_M Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/02/2019 at 2:54pm
44 means that there are 2 balsa-plies in the middle, each of them 4 mm thick. Both cork-plies have a thickness of round about 2mm each. Together with the outer-plies the overall thickness should be round about 13 mm
Back to Top
tommyzai View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member
Avatar
Senior Animator

Joined: 02/17/2007
Location: Prescott AZ USA
Status: Offline
Points: 8961
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tommyzai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/02/2019 at 3:32pm
Yeah, 13mm sounds about right. I know it's a little thicker than 10mm.
For More Info, PM or Email me: [email protected]
Back to Top
tuco View Drop Down
Gold Member
Gold Member
Avatar

Joined: 06/11/2007
Location: ValleyOfTheSun
Status: Offline
Points: 1345
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tuco Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/03/2019 at 9:01pm
is the outer ply mahogany?  like the reddish look.
The Dark Side is:
"Quicker, easier, more seductive" - Yoda


Back to Top
haggisv View Drop Down
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
Avatar
Dark Knight

Joined: 06/28/2005
Location: Australia
Status: Offline
Points: 4951
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote haggisv Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/03/2019 at 11:27pm
Originally posted by tuco tuco wrote:

is the outer ply mahogany?  like the reddish look.

That's probably right, it's quite common in Re-Impact blades.
Smart; VS>401, Dtecs OX
Tenergy Alternatives | My TT Articles
Back to Top
Simas View Drop Down
Super Member
Super Member
Avatar

Joined: 09/04/2017
Location: EU
Status: Offline
Points: 279
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Simas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/09/2019 at 5:42am
That's a very interesting looking blade. Could you post more top and side view pictures (not isometric)?
Stiga Offensive Classic Legend
DHS Hurricane Neo3
Donic Bluefire JP01 Turbo
Back to Top
tommyzai View Drop Down
Premier Member
Premier Member
Avatar
Senior Animator

Joined: 02/17/2007
Location: Prescott AZ USA
Status: Offline
Points: 8961
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tommyzai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/09/2019 at 2:01pm
Originally posted by Simas Simas wrote:

That's a very interesting looking blade. Could you post more top and side view pictures (not isometric)?

Sorry, I cannot at this time. My friend is demoing the blade. 
For More Info, PM or Email me: [email protected]
Back to Top
Simas View Drop Down
Super Member
Super Member
Avatar

Joined: 09/04/2017
Location: EU
Status: Offline
Points: 279
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Simas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/10/2019 at 6:23am
Originally posted by tommyzai tommyzai wrote:

Originally posted by Simas Simas wrote:

That's a very interesting looking blade. Could you post more top and side view pictures (not isometric)?

Sorry, I cannot at this time. My friend is demoing the blade. 

No rush, when you have it someday :)
Stiga Offensive Classic Legend
DHS Hurricane Neo3
Donic Bluefire JP01 Turbo
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Forum Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 12.01
Copyright ©2001-2018 Web Wiz Ltd.

This page was generated in 0.143 seconds.

Become a Fan on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Web Wiz News
About MyTableTennis.NET | Forum Help | Disclaimer

MyTableTennis.NET is the trading name of Alex Table Tennis Ltd.

Copyright ©2003-2019 Alex Table Tennis Ltd. All rights reserved.