HL5 / W968 handle shapes

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I thought this might be of interest as I see a lot of questions on handle profiles on these blades and was surprised just how much difference there is in reality.

I have a 2020 commercial HL5, a 2019 HL5x and a 2019 W968 provincial. I have always found the HL5 handle to be a little skinny for me whereas the 5x was similar in shape but larger and more balanced and comfortable. My W968 is a recent addition and as a new 2019 model it has the smaller head size and larger handle.

As you can see in picture (bottom>top is HL5/5x/W968) the W968 is both chunkier and squarer than the others and as such the blade feels more balanced in hand to me. The 5x in turn looks squarer than the 5, which looks the most rounded to me.

All are 89/90g

I haven’t tried the W968 yet but it feels different to the other two when bouncing a ball. It feels more solid and slightly softer (same rubbers)

I have found the 5 to be a little mushy feeling and not great with softer rubbers. The 5x is noticeably faster and crisper as you’d expect and closer to an outer carbon blade like my Viscaria.

Frequencies are;

5 : 1250
5x : 1450
W968 : 1394

 
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@Wrighty67 Thank you.

I don't have a caliper but from my rough measurements.

Fang Bo Carbon ~24 mm
HL 3 ~27mm

I've ordered HL 5 recently, from the pictures above It looks like very similar to Fang Bo Carbon.
I will update here when I get the blade for future reference.

As I understand W968 is beefy as like HL3 which is perfect, which explains why people look for it.
 
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@Wrighty67 Thank you.

I don't have a caliper but from my rough measurements.

Fang Bo Carbon ~24 mm
HL 3 ~27mm

I've ordered HL 5 recently, from the pictures above It looks like very similar to Fang Bo Carbon.
I will update here when I get the blade for future reference.

As I understand W968 is beefy as like HL3 which is perfect, which explains why people look for it.

I would say that you are correct - except my HL5 is 25.4 so larger than FB. As you can see from the pictures it is the profile that is also different and this makes a bigger difference to the feel than size alone.

 
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For penhold they are a bit more square. FB Handle and I would assume HL5 are a bit more round. Once in a while, many penholders will switch to a shakehand grip to let their hands rest, PG7 feels nice and full in the hands. Fang bo is ok, but a bit thin.
IMG_5305(2).jpg
 
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says Addicted to Spin!
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For penhold they are a bit more square. FB Handle and I would assume HL5 are a bit more round. Once in a while, many penholders will switch to a shakehand grip to let their hands rest, PG7 feels nice and full in the hands. Fang bo is ok, but a bit thin.View attachment 24421
Is the red the FB?

I would want to switch my 968 ML lense for this one like WCQ!
 
says Addicted to Spin!
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From what I remember from 247tt on instagram WCQ’s lens was a photo of him winning gold in the youth Olympics.

I dont know if this has changed.
He’s also had this which I would want, more non-descript:
 

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