1.  Introduction

Stiga has been famous by many legendary all-wood table tennis blades. And, by ‘Carbonado’ series, Stiga has successfully changed its main lineup from wood blades to fiber blades. For avoiding hard feeling of carbon fiber, most of table tennis companies are using mixed fiber, for example Arylate Carbon that is the composite of Arylate fiber and Carbon fiber. However, Stiga choose completely different way.

Stiga Carbonado series 01
Fig.01 The description on TeXtreme

The fiber for ‘Carbonado’ series is ‘TeXtreme’ which is very specially produced woven carbon fiber. Differently from conventional carbon fiber, spread tow structure makes the fibers straighter.

Stiga Carbonado series 02
Fig.02 The appearance of the surface of TeXtreme

As a result, the surface of TeXtreme is very flat, and it is much thinner than conventional carbon fiber. It requires less epoxy than conventional carbon fiber. By the use of this new material, Stiga succeeded to make ideal carbon blades those are as soft as the blades with mixed fibers such as ALC while providing much better energy efficiency and higher elasticity. For ‘Carbonado’ series, three kinds of TeXtreme are being used : Low density (= 60g/㎡) TeXtreme is used for ‘Carbonado 45’ and ‘Carbonado 90’. Middle density (= 100g/㎡) TeXtreme is used for ‘Carbonado 145’ and ‘Carbonado 190’. And, high density (= 200g/㎡) TeXreme is used for ‘Carbonado 245’ and ‘Carbonado 290’.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 03
Fig.03 Stiga ‘Dynasty Carbon’

And, after the success of ‘Carbonado’ series, Stiga introduced a special variation of ‘Carbonado’ series which is called as ‘Dynasty Carbon’.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 04
Fig.04 Blade construction of ‘Dynasty Carbon’

The construction of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is based on that of ‘Carbonado’ series. But, the top layer is different. The top layer of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is dyed Koto while the top layer of ‘Carbonado’ series is natural Limba. And, the thickness of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is about 5.9mm, while the thickness of ‘Carbonado’ series is about 6.0mm. ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is a bit thinner than 6 models of ‘Carbonado’ series, but has harder top layer. TeXtreme is placed directly under the top layer, like ‘Carbonado’ series. The kind of TeXtreme is not announced. But, Stiga is calling the TeXtreme for ‘Dynasty Carbon’ as ‘TexTreme+’, and explaining that it is optimized for Xu Xin.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 05
Fig.05 Master(FL) handle (left) and Classic handle (right)

The variation of handles is same as other Stiga models. There are three kinds of shake hand handles – Master (FL), Classic (ST) and Winner (AN). Legend (wide FL) is not available now. And, because Xu Xin is using ‘Dynasty Carbon’, Stiga also launched special edition of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ – ‘Dynasty Carbon Xu Xin Edition’.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 06
Fig.06 Pen (Chinese Penholder) version of ‘Dynasty Carbon Xu Xin Edition’

‘Dynasty Carbon Xu Xin Edition’ is available both in shakehand version and in penholder version. But, please note than Xu Xin is penholder player. Therefore ‘Pen (Chinese Penholder)’ version of ‘Xu Xin Edition’ will be more meaningful than shakehand version if you just want collect the special edition.

Special additional printing is applied on the fore side of blade head, and unique nameplate is applied for handle.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 07
Fig.07 The special nameplate of ‘Xu Xin Edition’

The nameplate for ‘Xu Xin Edition’ is painted in blue, while the nameplate of normal version (= shake hand version) is painted in black. The signature of Xu Xin is placed at the center of the nameplate, instead of the original name – ‘Dynasty Carbon’. Also, the orientation is nameplate is 180 degree rotated from normal direction, because Xu Xin is left-hander.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 08
Fig.08 The end plate of ‘Dynasty Carbon’

Like other Stiga blades, another Aluminum plate that expresses ‘HANDMADE IN SWEDEN’ is applied at the end of handle.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 09
Fig.09 The handle variations of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ – Master, Classic and Xu Xin Edition Pen

Then let’s examine the mechanical characteristics of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ by Performance Indices.


2. Blades to be compared

The blades to be compared are as follows :

  • Stiga Carbonado 45 : Low density TeXtreme / leaned direction + Limba top layer
  • Stiga Carbonado 90 : Low density TeXtreme / normal direction + Limba top layer
  • Stiga Carbonado 145 : Middle density TeXtreme / leaned direction + Limba top layer
  • Stiga Carbonado 190 : Middle density TeXtreme / normal direction + Limba top layer
  • Butterfly Timo Boll ALC : ALC (Arylate fiber + Carbon fiber) + Koto top layer
  • Butterfly Timo Boll ZLC : ZLC (PBO fiber + Carbon fiber) + Koto top layer
  • Butterfly Timo Boll ZLF : ZLF (PBO fiber only) + Koto top layer
  • Butterfly Korbel : Representative of 5-ply wood offensive blade
  • Stiga Allround Classic : Reference (all values are 1.0)

2 low density ones (45 and 90) and 2 middle density ones (145 and 190) among 6 versions of ‘Carbonado’ series can be compared with ‘Dynasty Carbon’. High density versions (‘Carbonado 245’ and ‘Carbonado 290’) are excluded because those two are too fast for this comparison.

Three versions (ALC, ZLC and ZLF) of ‘Timo Boll’ series can be directly compared with ‘Dynasty Carbon’ because those are also the outer-fiber blades with Koto top layer.

‘Korbel’ is the representative of 5-ply wood offensive blade. ‘Allround Classic’ is the reference blade of Performance Indices system. (All values for ‘Allround Classic’ are 1.0.) Those two are not direct competitor of ‘Dynasty Carbon’, but will be compared just for reference.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 10
Fig.10

Comparison will be done by performance indices. Concerning the detail of four performance indices, please refer to following articles in ‘Background’ section :

 


3. Comparison by Performance Indices

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 11 Graph_A
Fig.11 Comparison by Elasticity Indices

Fig.11 shows the comparison graph of Elasticity Indices.

The Ep of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is 1.89. It is higher than that of ‘Carbonado 45’ (= 1.80). And, it is very close to that of ‘Carbonado 90’ (= 1.88). But, it is lower than that of ‘Carbonado 145’ (= 1.95) or ‘Carbonado 190’ (= 2.10). And, the Ec of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is higher than the Ec of ‘Carbonado’ series with TeXtreme in leaned direction – ‘Carbonado 45’ (= 1.37) or ‘Carbonado 145’ (= 1.40). But, it is lower than the Ec of ‘Carbonado’ series with TeXtreme in regular direction – ‘Carbonado 90’ (= 1.61) or ‘Carbonado 190’ (= 1.77).

It is impossible to estimate the density of TeXtreme for ‘Dynasty Carbon’ from the Elasticity Indices. But, we can at least assume that it is in between low density and middle density.

The Ep and Ec of ‘Timo Boll ALC’ (2.14 and 1.77) are noticeably higher than those of ‘Dynasty Carbon’. The difference between ‘Timo Boll ZLC’ (Ep = 2.11, Ec = 2.01) and ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is even higher. On the contrary, the Elasticity Indices of ‘Timo Boll ZLF’ (Ep = 1.63, Ec = 1.47) are noticeably lower than those of ‘Dynasty Carbon’.

‘Korbel’ (Ep = 1.54, Ec = 1.27) is apparently less elastic than the fiber blades in this comparison (except for ‘Timo Boll ZLF’). From the values and the shapes of graphs, we will be able to consider ‘Dynasty Carbon’ as the blade between ‘Timo Boll ALC’ and ‘Korbel’.

 

Examining Ec/Ep is also a easier way to understand the tendency of elasticity of blades. Fig.12 shows the relationship between Ec/Ep and Ep.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 12 Graph_B
Fig.12 Ec/Ep vs. Ep

Ec/Ep expresses the ‘tendency’ of the elasticity of blade. By examining Ec/Ep and Ep at the same time, we can easily understand the behavior of blades.

On the graph, all the blades except for reference blade are in ‘Hold’ range (Ec/Ep < 1.0). ‘Timo Boll ZLC’ and ‘Timo Boll ZLF’ are in ‘Mild Hold’ range or the border between ‘Mild Hold’ range and ‘Deep Hold’ range. And, ‘Allround Classic’ which is the reference blade is on neutral line (Ec/Ep = 1.0) that expresses that the behavior of the blade is linear. We will be able to consider ‘Timo Boll ZLC’ and ‘Timo Boll ZLF’ the blades in ‘Almost Linear’ range (0.9 < Ec/Ep < 1.1). All the other blades except for those three are in ‘Deep Hold’ (Ec/Ep < 0.9) range.

The position of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ on the graph is in between ‘Carbonado 90’ and two models with leaned TeXtreme – ‘Carbonado 45’ and ‘Carbonado 145’. We may be able to explain that ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is placed in between the ‘Carbonado with TeXtreme in regular direction’ (= ‘Carbonado 90’ and ‘Carbonado 190’) and the ‘Carbonado with TeXtreme in leaned direction’ (‘Carbonado 45’ and ‘Carbonado 145’). But, please note that ‘Carbonado 190’ is noticeably more elastic than ‘Dynasty Carbon’ and the other three models of ‘Carbonado’ in this comparison. Anyway, it means that the concept of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is the blade between those two groups of ‘Carbonado’ series. Probably that was realized by the reduced thickness, the harder top layer and optimized density of TeXtreme. Of course we can’t estimate the density of TeXtreme in ‘Dynasty Carbon’ because many conditions (= thickness, top layer and so on) are different from those of ‘Carbonado’ series. (But, from the graph, we can assume that the density of TeXtreme is in between low density and middle density, and it is placed in leaned direction. This is no more than rough assumption, and can be different from actual material in ‘Dynasty Carbon’.)

If a player want the blade which is faster than the blade of moderate speed group (= ‘Timo Boll ZLF’ and ‘Korbel’) and not as fast as the blade of high speed group (= ‘Carbonado 190’, ‘Timo Boll ALC’ and ‘Timo Boll ZLC), the player will be able to select among four blades – ‘Dynasty Carbon’, ‘Carbonado 90’, ‘Carbonado 45’ and ‘Carbonado 145’. In that case, the key of selection may be the level of hold when player hits ball very strongly. And, if the player thinks that the hold level of ‘Carbonado 90’ is not sufficient and the hold level of ‘Carbonado 45’ is too extreme, ‘Dynasty Carbon’ will be very good solution.

Also, if a player like the Koto top layer, outer-fiber construction and the hold level of ‘Timo Boll ALC’ but thinks that ‘Timo Boll ALC’ is too much elastic, ‘Dynasty Carbon’ may be very good solution.

 

Then successively, let’s compare Vibration Indices. Fig. 13 shows the comparison graph of Vibration Indices.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 13 Graph_C
Fig.13 Comparison by Vibration Indices

Vibration Indices are concerned with feeling. Vp indicates primary feeling which is transferred to player’s palm. And, Vl is the feeling at the wing of a blade. It is felt by player’s index finger or middle finger.

The Vp of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is 1.15. It is higher than those of ‘Carbonado 45’ (= 1.10) and ‘Carbonado 145’ (= 1.12), but is lower than those of ‘Carbonado 90’ (= 1.19) and ‘Carbonado 190’ (1.25). Again we can notice that ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is placed in between the ‘Carbonado with TeXtreme in regular direction – X90’ and ‘Carbonado with TeXtreme in leaned direction – X45’. ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is harder than ‘Carbonado 45/145’ and softer than ‘Carbonado 90/190’. The Vp’s of ‘Timo Boll’ series is higher than that of ‘Dynasty Carbon’. Especially that of ‘Timo Boll ALC’ (= 1.26) and that of ‘Timo Boll ZLC’ (= 1.36) are much higher. Interestingly even ‘Timo Boll ZLF’ which is the softest in ‘Timo Boll’ series shows higher Vp than ‘Dynasty Carbon’ (1.19 vs. 1.16). It means that ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is quite soft blade although it is harder than ‘Carbonado 45/145’. (Maybe the softness of ‘Carbonado 45/145’ may be too extreme as fiber blades. Even the Vp of ‘Carbonado 45’ is close to that of ‘Korbel’.)

The Vl of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is 1.35. It is of course higher than those of ‘Carbonado 45/145’ (= 1.29). And, it is also higher than that of ‘Carbonado 90’ (= 1.32). Also it is not much lower than those of ‘Carbonado 190’ (= 1.40), ‘Timo Boll ALC’ (= 1.41) and ‘Timo Boll ZLC’ (= 1.39). In fact the comparison of this kind of blades just by Vl is somewhat difficult because in general Vl of this kind (outer fiber) of blades is very high. Examining Vl/Vp will be easier way for the comparison.

Fig.14 shows the relationship between Vl/Vp and Vp.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 14 Graph_D
Fig.14 Vl/Vp vs. Vp

On the graph, all the blades except for the reference blade (= ‘Allround Classic’) are placed in upper area – ‘Relatively sharper at index finger’ range. But, the blades can be divided into three groups. The first group includes ‘Carbonado 45’, ‘Carbonado 145’, ‘Dynasty Carbon’ and ‘Korbel’. The Vl/Vp of the blade in this group is over 1.15. And, it means the the relative feeling at index finger is definitely sharp. The second group includes ‘Timo Boll ZLF’, ‘Timo Boll ALC’, ‘Carbonado 90’ and ‘Carbonado 190’. The relative feeling (at index finger) of the blade in this group is also sharp. But, less sharp if compared with first group. The third group includes reference blade and ‘Timo Boll ZLC’. The relative feeling of blade in this group is uniform or near uniform.

In first group, ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is somewhat harder in primary feeling. However, if we compare by Vl/Vp, we can notice that ‘Dynasty Carbon’ provides the same tendency of feeling as ‘Carbonado 45/145’. The Vl/Vp of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is noticeably different from those of ‘Carbonado 90’ and ‘Carbonado 190’. From this result, we can again ‘assume’ that the TeXtreme of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is placed in leaned direction. Please note that this is no more than assumption, and can be different from actual TeXtreme in ‘Dynasty Carbon’.

If a player prefer very sharp feeling at index finger, and wants a blade which is harder than ‘Korbel’ or ‘Carbonado 45/145’ but softer than ‘Carbonado 90/190’ or ‘Timo Boll ALC’, ‘Dynasty Carbon’ will be a good solution.

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 15

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 16


4. Summary

The result of comparison can be summarized as follows :

  • The primary elasticity of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is higher than those of ‘Carbonado’ with low density TeXtreme (= ‘Carbonado 45’ and ‘Carbonado 90’), but is lower than those of ‘Carbonado’ with middle density TeXtreme (= ‘Carbonado 145’ and ‘Carbonado 190’). And, the central elasticity of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is higher than those of ‘Carbonado’ with leaned TeXtreme (= ‘Carbonado 45’ and ‘Carbonado 145’), but is lower than those of ‘Carbonado’ with TeXtreme in regular direction (= ‘Carbonado 90’ and ‘Carbonado 190’).
  • The primary feeling of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is harder than those of ‘Carbonado’ with leaned TeXtreme (= ‘Carbonado 45’ and ‘Carbonado 145’), but is softer than those of ‘Carbonado’ with TeXtreme in regular direction (= ‘Carbonado 90’ and ‘Carbonado 190’). And, the edge feeling of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is harder than those of ‘Carbonado 45’, ‘Carbonado 145’ and ‘Carbonado 90’. It is softer than that of ‘Carbonado 190’.
  • ‘Dynasty Carbon’ seems to be the intermediate blade between ‘Carbonado’ with leaned TeXtreme (= ‘Carbonado 45’ and ‘Carbonado 145’) and ‘Carbonado’ with TeXtreme in regular direction (= ‘Carbonado 90’ and ‘Carbonado 190’). But, it is closer to the ‘Carbonado’ with leaned TeXtreme. (It is assume that the TeXtreme of ‘Dynasty Carbon’ is also leaned.)
  • ‘Dynasty Carbon’ can be very good solution when player want the blade which is faster than ‘Korbel’ or the blades with similar elasticity and high-speed outer-fiber blades such as ‘Timo Boll ALC’ or ‘Carbonado 190’.

 

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 17

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 18

Stiga Dynasty Carbon 19

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