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Tuesday, December 27, 2011 Racquet of the Week: Wilson Juice 100 BLX

Wilson made a few changes to their line of 2012 racquets. One of the racquets that will debut in the New Year is the Wilson Juice 100 BLX. Placed in the “Power & Spin” category, the Juice is both easy on the eyes and easy on the arm. Let’s take a closer look into what makes this new frame worth a try in 2012.

Appearance

The Wilson Juice 100 BLX comes in a whole new look. Far from traditional, this frame boasts a baby blue/white/dark blue/yellow color scheme with an open string pattern of 16x18. To me, this frame is not all too intimidating and almost seems like it’s for someone who plays “soft”. Don’t let the cosmetics fool you though, after hitting the court to try it out; there is plenty of power for any player.

Specifications

Head Size: 100 sq. in

Weight: 10.7 ounces unstrung

Length: 27 inches

String Pattern: 16x18

Balance: 7 points head light

Swing Speed: Medium to Fast

Technology

The Wilson Juice 100 BLX features some of the latest technology from Wilson, one of which is Basalt (BLX). Basalt fibers are embedded in the frame to reduce vibrations and provide better feel. Not only do the Basalt fibers reduce stress on the arm, they also handle power better and improve feedback. Amplifeel is a new handle technology that provides improved feel with the use of graphite and basalt forms, foam, and a soft butt-cap. Double holes have also been added to the grommet construction, adding diameter, which increases the “sweet spot” while also adding power. With these updates combined, they give the Juice a solid feel with increased power and decreased stress.

Out on Court

Expecting very little when I first took the court with this new frame, I was highly impressed with how stable it felt on ground-strokes. The open string pattern allowed for enhanced spin, while power was never an issue. You won’t have any trouble creating power as this racquet comes around fairly quickly to give you more than enough. It felt best from the backhand wing, as I felt fully in control of my shots and was able to generate heavy topspin when needed. Hitting forehands at first, I had minimal issues with control, but finally became comfortable and really enjoyed the overall feel on both sides. Around the net it packed a powerful punch and accuracy was never an issue. It felt very forgiving as mis-hits didn’t cause racquet rattling and resisted racquet twisting well. The serve was very comfortable and generating spin and power wasn’t a problem.

The Grade

Overall, I’d give this racquet an A-. The only area I saw a problem with was control. Generating power and spin was exceptionally easy and the overall feel was great. If you’re already a player who has control over any racquet and is looking for that frame to give you the spin and power you need, the Wilson Juice 100 BLX must be given a chance.

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