Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Information from internet - Victor Carbonsonic

I did try to buy a tube of Carbonsonic No1 to try-out from the local Victor agent but was informed they have no plans to make the Carbonsonic available to the Singapore/Malaysian market. No further clearification received on the matter. Sometimes you really must wonder why the local agent would not want to bring this shuttle into the market ....

Checking around on the internet, the Ozzie agent is selling the Carbonsonic at more than AUD34 per tube of 6 shuttles in Australia!!! Hence importing a tube for testing would became extremely expensive.

Thus I did the next best thing - search the internet for any additional information and found the following.
Carbonsonic cork structure and external appearance

Real feather shuttle (LHS) vs Carbonsonic (RHS)
Feather length of feather shuttle
"Feather" length of Carbonsonic shuttle

Width of feather (LHS) vs Carbonsonic (RHS) shuttle
Weight of feather (LHS) vs Carbonsonic (RHS) shuttle

The only real review (not staged) I could locate on the Carbonsonic was on YouTube by couple of Canadian(s) sports shop owner who are also professional badminton players. Basically they rate the Carbonsonic as an stand-in between feather shuttlecocks and nylon shuttlecocks - as a good replacement for the lower end feather shuttlecocks eg AS10, etc. The Carbonsonic is a bit faster than a feather shuttle when they were stroking. Durability is reported to be outstanding by the original Victor demo on YouTube by Zhao Jian Hua, Martin Frost and Sun Jun.

Will update once I am able to obtain the Carbonsonic for testing.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Revisit - Yang Yang 300B

Joined a friend for a game and they were using Yang Yang 300B shuttlecocks.

It was a hot day and we were playing at the new Tampines Hub in Singapore. There are 16 badminton  courts available for booking in the facility.

The Yang Yang 300B shuttlecock feels lighter than the past review.

Flight was acceptable. However did note that the shuttles tend to fly faster as time goes by as the ribcage structure tend to shrink inwards and became a little more arrow-like after few hard whacks.

Durability was acceptable for non-competitive games. Did note it was necessary to use 2 shuttles for a smash happy game.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Babolat 2

Received a few samples for testing.

Initial feel of the shuttles were not light but not heavy as well. Shuttles does not have a solid feel to them. 

We were provided with Speed76&77 for testing.

Honestly I could not really distinguish between the 76&77 during play. The shuttle performance and feel are quite nice. A shuttle could almost last a set with about 50% of shots were smashes - the ribcage structure on 3 of the samples were lobsided, by about 16 or 17 points in a 21 point set. The last sample had a broken feather 3/4 way along the stem.

Condition of the samples after the session.
3-layer cork structure

As these are by Babolat, they won't be competitively priced. On the net, they are priced in the mid-upper range with more established competitors. Unless Babolat reduce the prices, they will be just another of the major tennis manufacturers who may quit the badminton market in the long run.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Ling-Mei Dimgray

Received couple of samples for testing. The Dimgray is one of their better products.

The Dimgray has a nice solid feel when held. Ribcage structure feels solid. Each shuttle was only good for a game with heavy smashing. Feedback received from the players indicate the shuttles had a nice feel to them.

These are the pix from the rear after usage. Although the pix does not show it so well, both samples are deformed.

Condition of both Dimgray after the game

Here's an interesting "feature" for one of the shuttles tested. Please note the uneven cut of one of the cork layers - it's actually slanted at an angle on one of the samples.
Uneven cut of the layered head

Uneven cut of the cork layers on one shuttle vs the other Dimgray

Prices on the internet for the Dimgray are not cheap. One of my regulars from Malaysia inform that another Ling-Mei model had better durability.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Babolat shuttlecocks found in the hall

Found these Babolat shuttlecocks in a hall.

Will be requesting for samples in the near future.

Judging from the cork structure, model#2 has 3-layers and should be a better grade than model#5.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

FYI - Where to obtain list of BWF approved shuttlecocks

The following is the link to the BWF webpage which lists BWF approved of shuttlecocks.

Please note there is an expiry date for every approval.

There are some products which claim to be BWF approved and show a certificate on their blog or website ... hey I can photoshop too!!

Please do note the BWF approval is for a specified batch number for a specific brand and model of shuttlecocks, not a model of shuttles with BWF in the name.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Different shuttlecock feathers

Shuttlecocks are manufactured using two type of feathers, duck and goose. 

You often hear of the many complicated descriptions on how to differentiate between the type of feathers used on a shuttlecock.

Worry no more - the following picture is worth a thousand words!

For the newbies:-

Duck feathers are used for lower quality shuttlecocks eg training, etc. 
Basically thicker stem with shorter, wider and thicker "featherspan" (alike term wingspan)

Goose feather shuttlecocks are used to manufacture the tournament grade shuttlecocks.
Longer and thinner stem with narrower, longer and finer "featherspan".

Sunday, January 1, 2017

The best and worst shuttlecocks I have tried (so far)

Pix from Google

The following is my personal take on the shuttlecocks I have used over the past few years.

In summary, there is no cheaper product which is durable and has best performance aka you get what you paid for. It's like wanting to own a BMW or Mercedes. You would not buy a Proton or Cherry and expect it to be the equivalent of a quality German automobile!

Alike buying a car, it is a compromise - Durability, Cost and Performance.

Please feel free to feedback via the comments.

BEST Overall Flight Characteristics
1. Yonex AS30/40/50
2. Aeroplane EG1101
2. Protech Platinum
3. RSL Tourney Classic
3. Xped RF-X3
4. RCL Black No1
4. RSL Tourney No1
5. Protech WorldClass

WORST Overall Flight Characteristics
1. Sintec*
2. Flymax
2. APAC*
3. Ashaway*
4. Efeel*

Best Durability (Least feather breaking or speed degradation)
1. Protech SG PT-10
2. Yonex AS30/40/50
3. RCL Black Gold
4. RSL Supreme (previously now Ultimate)
5. Sintec ST-818 Speed76

Worst Durability (due to feather breaking or speed degradation)
1. RCL Gold
2. Protech Masterpiece
2. Sintec ST-818 Speed77
3. Xped RF-X3
4. RSL Tourney Classic/Tourney No1
4. Aeroplane EG1101
4. RCL Black No1
5. Li-Ning*
5. Ashaway*
5. Victor Gold*
5. Efeel*

Worst Quality Control (aka batch inconsistency)
1. Victor Champion*
2. Fleet*

Pricing (Most expensive - from visiting shops)
1. Yonex AS30/40/50
2. RSL Ultimax (never tried yet)
2. Protech Platinum
3. Sintec ST818
4. Li-Ning A300
5. RCL Black Gold

Most Popular (various groupes or advertised usage at BadmintonCentral)
1. RSL Supreme/Ultimax
2. Yonex*
3. Li-Ning*

*The brand/series of shuttlecocks in-general