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Review: BBC Ultima Plus

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JimT View Drop Down
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    Posted: 02/04/2012 at 10:09pm
Brand: BBC (Blades By Charlie, www.bladesbycharlie.com)
Model: Ultima Plus (or Ultima-5; don't look for it on the website, it's a unique name, (c) Wink)
Class: OFF+
Handle: FL, 100 mm
Weight: 89 g
Face dimensions: 159 x 148 mm (about 1 mm less than regular Butterfly dimensions)
Thickness: 7.8 mm
Plies: 3+2, ie, WRC 1.25 mm + carbon + WRC 4.75 mm + carbon + WRC 1.25 mm

This blade is my custom variant of BBC 9-10-9 (which is built the same way, from the same materials but with thicker outer plies and thinner central ply; specifically 2.25 mm - C - 2.5 mm - C - 2.25 mm).

My main blade is BBC Ultima (Ultima-7) built the same way but with thicker (than Ultima Plus) outer plies - 1.75 mm of WRC instead of 1.25 mm.

See review on Ultima here

http://mytabletennis.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=44760

I wanted to get more or less the same blade, with the same great balance and handle, same materials but a bit faster - so I asked Charlie to make the outer plies thinner. My intention was to try it out with slower rubbers a-la Mars II 37-39 deg, or medium-fast tacky rubbers like LKT Rapid Speed or Gambler Wraith. Ultima plays OK with this rubber but only close to the table, step away and you will lack some oomph in attacking shots.

Also I liked Nexy Sahara very much in everything except for the handle - I am pretty choosy guy... - so this was my attempt to get a blade that plays about the same as Sahara but with better (for me, of course) balance and grip.
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JimT View Drop Down
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Single Ply Hinoki Club, Founding Member
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JimT Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/04/2012 at 10:09pm
First impressions:

First of all, I must say that I think I achieved at least one of my goals - this blade basically plays the same as Nexy Sahara. Speedwise it is as fast.

But I think that control is better than with Sahara, and it plays better in the short  game.

Naturally Ultima Plus has absolutely no problems delivering the ball from far away - I have it now paired it with Mars II 39 deg Red 2.3 mm on FH and Mars II 41 deg Black 2.0 mm on BH (first combo was with Xiom Omega IV Asia but that turned out to be rather uncontrollable for me).

The only problem I have with U+ right now is lack of control in BH game - short pushes, passive game over the table, and even BH looping as the faster blade requires a better angle control. Perhaps I need a different BH rubber.

Will play with it some more soon, and more info will follow.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carryboy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/04/2012 at 10:31pm
That is truly a lovely looking blade Jim T, They look well made but then again you would not expect anything less from Charlie/BBC
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JimT Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02/05/2012 at 9:27pm
Originally posted by Carryboy Carryboy wrote:

That is truly a lovely looking blade Jim T, They look well made but then again you would not expect anything less from Charlie/BBC


Yes, Charlie does great job there. I especially love the balance and the handle of his Ultima series (9-10-9 and variations) blades.

Played a bit more with Ultima Plus today - Mars 41 Red on FH, and Mars 41 Black 2.0 on BH and confirmed my earlier suspicions that BH rubber has gotta be something else. Too bouncy and unpredictable... and then sometimes the ball drops dead into the net all of a sudden.

Put LKT Rapid Speed there - will check it out later this week.

Later: LKT Rapid Speed works pretty great, especially 2.0 version.
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