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Some new Soulspin custom blades

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 10:28am
Finally after nearly one month since shipped from Germany my Soulspin blades just cleared customs! Can't wait to try them out... Will post updates with photos soon.
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
Nittaku Fastarc G1 / Nittaku Fastarc G1
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skynet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 11:45am
Originally posted by robertantal robertantal wrote:

I know Soulspin built the Meister and the S-series for Nittaku as well but I do not own any of those blades myself.
I'm curious what are other players experience with these soulspin built blades and what is the secret of the Spruce used by this german company in their blades?

..

Finally after nearly one month since shipped from Germany my Soulspin blades just cleared customs! Can't wait to try them out... Will post updates with photos soon.



I recently received a Soulspin custom blade, too, although the "custom" was more like an accident...I did not order a custom one...LOL
Outstanding built quality, better than Butterfly or other high price products I've seen or had before. Haven't tried the blade yet though; still waiting for my new rubbers...

Please do post the photos of your new blades. I'm quite curious..
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 12:18pm
I definitely will follow up with photos and review! Rubbers are also very important, I know the blade is 80% of your playing style but the rubbers are just as important. If you pair the blade with the wrong rubber it can be a total failure. I prefer a certain hardness and stickiness to my rubbers. Usually harder rubbers complement nicely softer woods. WHAT IS YOUR OPINION?
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
Nittaku Fastarc G1 / Nittaku Fastarc G1
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skynet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 1:51pm
Originally posted by robertantal robertantal wrote:

...Usually harder rubbers complement nicely softer woods. WHAT IS YOUR OPINION?


Well, yes, that is the word on the street, so to speak, for many years. Hard rubbers + soft blade and vice versa. There is probably some truth to that, even in the plastic-ball era where more and more players put very hard rubbers on rather hard/stiff blades. However I do not think it is necessary for mere hobby players to follow 1:1 what pros or semi-pros do (these days).

The blade that I received is a 5-ply allwood with a kiri core plus two spruce outers. It seems to be somewhat stiff, but because of the spruce outers I expect a very soft touch. I intend to put medium-hard rubbers on it. Xiom Omega V Euro (45° ESN) and Omega V Tour (47.5° ESN). That should work nicely...maybe I'll try Omega VII Asia (52.5°) as well, but I'm not sure if I'm able to fully engage a hard rubber like that in order to also make use of the spinning capabilities of the blade (which in this case should generelly be on the higher end) . We'll see.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 2:37pm
I got the same wood so called spin offensive just with a slightly thinner core (3.6 mm) to reduce the speed and the total thickness of the blade a little. I also opted for the new era handle what suppose to be transferring the vibrations better. I do not worry about the speed because Spruce is pretty bouncy and has a hinoki specific kick what I like. Also my choice of rubber is the nittaku fastarc g1 what I consider a moderate speed and high spin rubber.Also since you received your blade already could you share some photos please?
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
Nittaku Fastarc G1 / Nittaku Fastarc G1
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skynet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 2:53pm
Originally posted by robertantal robertantal wrote:

I got the same wood so called spin offensive just with a slightly thinner core (3.6 mm) to reduce the speed and the total thickness of the blade a little...Also since you received your blade already could you share some photos please?


Well, first of all: I'm not quite sure what kind of blade I received exactly: I only know that it was produced by Soulspin. Last week I ordered a regular Nittaku S-5 from a shop; the S-5 is supposed to be made of spruce only...
But as I said the blade that I received has a kiri core insted of a spruce one. That is what I meant by saying "custom". It could very well be a "Spin Offensive" or the "PimplePark Pila", just with Nittaku print and S-5 handle caps.


Edited by Skynet - 06/30/2020 at 5:52pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skynet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 2:58pm
Originally posted by Skynet Skynet wrote:

Originally posted by robertantal robertantal wrote:

I got the same wood so called spin offensive just with a slightly thinner core (3.6 mm) to reduce the speed and the total thickness of the blade a little...Also since you received your blade already could you share some photos please?


Well, first of all: I'm not quite sure what kind of blade I received exactly: I only know that it was produced by Soulspin. Last week I ordered a regular Nittaku S-5 from a shop; the S-5 is supposed to be made of spruce only...
But as I said the blade that I received has a kiri core insted of a spruce one. That is what I meant by saying "custom". It could very well be a "Spin Offensive" or the "PimplePark Pila", just with Nittaku print and S-5 handle caps.



Sorry, picture is upside down I believe



Edited by Skynet - 06/30/2020 at 5:52pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 3:03pm
This is a Nittaku blade made of 5 layers of spruce no kiri core in this blade! It is indeed made by Soulspin!
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
Nittaku Fastarc G1 / Nittaku Fastarc G1
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 3:07pm
Sorry I just noticed your second post. What is your total thickness? If the core is kiri it will be a bit slower I belive than the original S-5
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skynet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 3:09pm
Originally posted by robertantal robertantal wrote:

This is a Nittaku blade made of 5 layers of spruce no kiri core in this blade! It is indeed made by Soulspin!



Yup, they confirmed it today. It is possibly the only "official" Nittaku S-5 with a kiri core. There is a good chance that I will keep the blade and order another S-5 (in the hope that the next one is "all-spruce"), because I really like the craftsmanship.
Thickness is 6.3 mm and weighs 79.5g. Yes, because of the kiri core and the leight weight overall, it will most likely be slower that the original. I originally intended to use the S-5 as a replacement for a Butterfly Kiso Hinoki V, but my version will also probably produce less spin that the other S-5s.


Edited by Skynet - 06/29/2020 at 3:14pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 3:17pm
I would not be worried about the speed because the kiri core will offer better control in my opinion so you could compensate with faster rubbers! Thibar MX-S perhaps.
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skynet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 3:22pm
Originally posted by robertantal robertantal wrote:

I would not be worried about the speed because the kiri core will offer better control in my opinion so you could compensate with faster rubbers! Thibar MX-S perhaps.


Indeed, the blade should offer plenty of control. I do not know the MX-S, only MX-P and EL-S, and I like the EL-S better, but these Evo rubbers are sooo heavy! The Omega Vs are a little lighter and fast enough for my level.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 3:26pm
Your blade is light enough to handle two MX-S rubbers and the hardness of the sponge (48deg) will work just fine with the blade...
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Skynet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06/29/2020 at 3:32pm
Maybe, but I would worry about my racket being too head heavy with two Evo MX-S. One MX-S for my fh could work though...first the Omega Vs and if it doesn't work out I might go the MX-S, Victas V-11  or maybe Quantum X Pro route..
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/03/2020 at 10:37am
Here are the promised photos...


















Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
Nittaku Fastarc G1 / Nittaku Fastarc G1
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/03/2020 at 10:43am
And some more!



















I will review them later one by one...
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/05/2020 at 12:01pm
Some photos with the rubbers installed on the Spin Offensive Soulspin blade with the new era handle...
Total weight of the blade is 89 g, after installing the two Nittaku Fastarc G1 rubbers is 189 g. I will mention again this is a modified Spin Offensive with a 2 mm thinner core than the one on Soulspin website.





















Some first impressions are that the speed of the setup is a solid OFF-, the spim indeed is easy to generate and vary, the handle is extremely thin to my liking so thin that I'm contemplating about adding grip tape to increase the diameter for a fuller feel.I love the idea of the ribbed handle it is great just the size is not what I expected. Regarding the control I can say is very easy to redirect shots and to change pace and spin. If you are a all arounder this is the ideal blade for you. Maybe the original blade with the ticker core is better suited for an all in attacking player. Overall I'm happy with the blade in all aspects I just wished I would ordered a larger and thicker handle. well maybe next time. This is my impression after one day of playing for about two hours so things may change in the future. 



Here is the construction of my blade reflecting the 2mm thinner core.


Edited by robertantal - 07/05/2020 at 1:41pm
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/06/2020 at 9:27am
After another couple of hours of play I concluded that the Custom Soulspeen Speed Offensive is not at all that speedy. My shots land closer to the middle of the table compared to the Gewo Konigsklasse Funf the blade I mainly use. Not being able to keep the balls deep I have trouble pushing people away from the table. Serves are also a bit slower but the spin is god. My blocks are easier to be attacked and I'm more sensitive to the incoming spin. Topspin rallies are controlled and super spiny. Keeping the ball in play is significantly easier with this blade when you continuously spin the ball. Even shots around the net became something doable more often than before. Killing the ball is somehow harder than with a faster blade. I believe the extra 2 mm I shaved off the Kiri core may be needed in some occasions but 7 mm blades are way to thick for my liking. I believe choosing the Kiri as a core it does have a weight and control advantage over Ayous but will lose in speed and overall power and it will create a thicker blade if you try to match the power of a identical composition blade with Ayous core. For a pure offensive blade Kiri core blades must be complemented by a faster carbon (5+2) setup. Also Spruce is a great wood what has some of the Japanese Hinoki wood characteristics but I prefer Koto as a top veneer over Spruce and I will keep Spruce as the middle veneer.
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Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 1:18pm
The second blade I got to test is the Custom Soulspin Medium Speed with a core increase of 0.2 mm for extra power.


The total blade weight with two Nittaku Fastarc G1 is 195 grams. A bit heavy for my liking but The extra 5 to 7 grams are due to the beautiful oversize Venge wood handle what is one of the heaviest from Soulspin's options.








The first impression after a day of playing is that even with the addition of the 0.2 mm to the Kiri core the blade is a slow OFF- in my opinion. Compared side by side with the Gewo Konigsklasse Funf it is a slower blade with much less kick. Also the spin is harder to generate than with the Gewo. The Ayous core really makes the Gewo blade come alive compared with the thicker Kiri core on the Soulspin. The Soulspin blade is more like a constant speed blade with high control for defenders or all-rounders. In my opinion this blade is better suited for pip players since blocking is very easy with it. All my blocks landed on the table easily at around the same depth independently of the incoming speed. Changing pace when attacking it was a bit of challenge since this blade's kick comes in at hard hits only. I will not spend any more time with this blade since it does not suit my style and I will probably offer it for sale at the FS section at one point.

Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote obesechopper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Yesterday at 1:37pm
The soulspin blades are great! 

I've had a number of custom ones made by them, all exceptional quality. The best I've seen, even when compared to other custom blade makers I've used. 

As far as the .2 kiri increase... I'm not sure how much difference that would actually make. At that small increment I'd think the specific wood quality used for that particular blade matters more (wood density etc. for each specific cut). Just as you can have 2 identical blades that play differently. 
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That is right. Unfortunately the better quality wood is always the heavier one with tighter grains. The sweet spot for my setup is 180 to 185 grams so it is tough to have a fast enough all wood attacking blade without making any compromise on wood quality or total thickness or choice of wood. I prefer blades no thicker than 6.0 mm, my rubbers cut weight 100 grams so the blade has to stay around 80 to 85 grams. Most of my previous blades had Ayous core and I love Ayous. I had a couple of blades with Kiri core but they had a layer of synthetic material to complement for the speed difference. My point was that pairing a Kiri core with the right top and mid veneer I could get a blade that has higher control than using Ayous as a core but unfortunately the speed loss is to high.
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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My blades weigh quite a bit more than that range (105-115ish), but I use a spruce core for those that has become my absolute favorite! 

For the 80-85 range... pretty light materials are needed, especially for an all-wood with power. Maybe like a ma lin extra offensive or the older oh sang eun butterfly blade models to replicate. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 6 hours 55 minutes ago at 9:48am
Here is the third Soulspin blade with Photos and review. The construction is same as Stiga's Infinity VPS V with the thickness of the veneers changed a bit. Core is Ayous and is reduced from 3.7 mm to 3.4 mm, Mid veneer is Spruce and it has been increased from 0.8 mm to 1.0 mm and the top veneer is Black Limba and it has the same thickness as the Limba on the Stiga blade 0.3 mm. Total thickness is 6.0 mm and is identical with the Stiga blade. The blade weight is 101 grams the weight increase over the Stiga coming from the over sized Wenge wood handle.















First impression is that the setup is a solid OFF and has god spin and control. I trimmed the rubbers close to the blade edge to save another 5 grams of the total weight not leaving the extra 2 mm around the edges as I usually do. total setup weight is 195 grams and is still on the heavy side just like the previous blade. I guess the beauty of the Wenge handle costed me an extra of 7 grams at the expense of the total weight. Otherwise the blade is well balanced. Playing is easy and my balls are landing mostly deep on the table but slow and spiny loops are also easy to be placed next to the net on the forehand or backhand side of the table. Passive blocking is decent but active blocks are better. Overall feel is not at the level of the Gewo Konigsklasse Funf but The speed and power are superior. This is only the firs day playing wit the blade so things may change once I get used to the extra weight compared to my main setup.


Edited by robertantal - 6 hours 50 minutes ago at 9:53am
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
Nittaku Fastarc G1 / Nittaku Fastarc G1
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote robertantal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 1 hour 28 minutes ago at 3:15pm
What do you think about a Spruce/Spruce/Ayous/Spruce/Spruce blade? It should be powerful enough at around 5.8mm? What about the spin? I think I would love to try it...
Robert
Gewo Königsklasse OFF Funf FL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hipnotic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 minutes ago at 4:31pm
Originally posted by robertantal robertantal wrote:

That is right. Unfortunately the better quality wood is always the heavier one with tighter grains. The sweet spot for my setup is 180 to 185 grams so it is tough to have a fast enough all wood attacking blade without making any compromise on wood quality or total thickness or choice of wood. I prefer blades no thicker than 6.0 mm, my rubbers cut weight 100 grams so the blade has to stay around 80 to 85 grams. Most of my previous blades had Ayous core and I love Ayous. I had a couple of blades with Kiri core but they had a layer of synthetic material to complement for the speed difference. My point was that pairing a Kiri core with the right top and mid veneer I could get a blade that has higher control than using Ayous as a core but unfortunately the speed loss is to high.

Yeah, you are not gonna get the power you want from an all wood blade at that wight range, but it's totally possible using composite fibers. I've built some pretty powerful blades at around 85g.
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