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shirazi_r
26th January 2011, 09:07
Some of you folks may already know that I'm in the market for some new gear. I've got my pads and gloves sorted (GM 909 d3o) so now I ponder if I made the right decision on my bat.

About a week ago I -having never seen or tried the bat- ordered a GM Icon DXM 303. Now, I realize that a 303 may be something of an insult for the bat purists lurking on these forums but it really seemed to fit the bill as to what I was looking for. I'm not completely put off by the fact that it's grade 4 willow, or that it doesn't include GM Now. In all honesty the only thing that worries me is the painted or "white polycoated" back of the bat.

The bat I ordered is in medium weight (2'10-2'12) as I figured the higher middle would compensate for the extra weight. Here's hoping :)

My question is, does anybody have any opinions or experience with the Icon 303, or just the Icon range itself? Are 303s really as bad as people make them out to be?

http://www.prodirectcricket.com/productimages/Sole/2829.jpg

Cover Drive
26th January 2011, 09:41
Some of you folks may already know that I'm in the market for some new gear. I've got my pads and gloves sorted (GM 909 d3o) so now I ponder if I made the right decision on my bat.

About a week ago I -having never seen or tried the bat- ordered a GM Icon DXM 303. Now, I realize that a 303 may be something of an insult for the bat purists lurking on these forums but it really seemed to fit the bill as to what I was looking for. I'm not completely put off by the fact that it's grade 4 willow, or that it doesn't include GM Now. In all honesty the only thing that worries me is the painted or "white polycoated" back of the bat.

The bat I ordered is in medium weight (2'10-2'12) as I figured the higher middle would compensate for the extra weight. Here's hoping :)

My question is, does anybody have any opinions or experience with the Icon 303, or just the Icon range itself? Are 303s really as bad as people make them out to be?

http://www.prodirectcricket.com/productimages/Sole/2829.jpg

I'm not too sure about the price you paid for your Icon 303 but if you paid anything above $100 then to be honest then you paid a lot and it is certainly not worth paying that much for a Grade 4 price (I'm sorry if I offended you). I really don't think it is worth paying $100 or more for a Grade 4 bat seriously, I made this mistake a while ago when I was not aware of cricket equipments so I do regret now that why I paid that much. At that time I wasn't aware of forum nor PakPassion had this section so when I look back I do kinda feel frustrated at myself.

I have seen Icon and to be honest, Icon shape is superb and a very good one. It is very well balance, good pickup etc and is a great range I would say. If you play on back-foot and the bounce is high where you play then this shape would turn out to be a great one for you.

So I would say yes 303 are as bad as people make.

Again I sincerely apologize if I hurt you or your feelings but I seriously had no intentions to do that.

askmoi
26th January 2011, 09:59
i find it strange that u got higher range of pads n gloves but then got only a 303 bat.....u cud have got it the other way round....but seriously if budget was an issue, much rather go for a Pakistani bat as u wud have gotten much better for the same price

shirazi_r
26th January 2011, 10:03
LOL... uh oh, I've got an expensive paper weight on the way. Don't worry CD, I'm not hurt by honesty. I paid $80 after shipping so I can either sell it for what I paid or use it as a net/bowling machine bat.

Why do you say it was so bad CD? Which G4 bat did you buy if you don't mind me asking?

Cover Drive
26th January 2011, 10:10
i find it strange that u got higher range of pads n gloves but then got only a 303 bat.....u cud have got it the other way round....but seriously if budget was an issue, much rather go for a Pakistani bat as u wud have gotten much better for the same price

I second what askmoi bhai said.


LOL... uh oh, I've got an expensive paper weight on the way. Don't worry CD, I'm not hurt by honesty. I paid $80 after shipping so I can either sell it for what I paid or use it as a net/bowling machine bat.

Why do you say it was so bad CD? Which G4 bat did you buy if you don't mind me asking?

The reason why I'm saying this is because the price you paid for a G4 GM bat is quite steep and more importantly you can get a grade 1 bat in that price. For example, $80 are around Rs. 7000 and in that price you can get AS V3 which goes for Rs. 6300 and keep in mind AS V3 is G1.

Ah no mind shind at all! Ask it away :) In June/July 2009 I paid around $200 for Gray Nicolls Powerbow 3 Star set which consisted of a bat, pads and gloves. The bat itself was $160 and I still regret paying that much for a Grade3/4 bat because I know that in that price I can easily get a G1 bat in Pakistan or a G2 bat in UK.

To be honest, bhai if you can sell it for the price you paid or even more than that then it would be great and it would be very good indeed. If you have big bucks coming in your way then buy a good G1 bat for matches and use this for nets and it would be a wise move indeed.

shirazi_r
26th January 2011, 10:51
CD, the problem I have with Pakistani bats is that being of a thin build and opening the batting, I need something with a VERY light pickup and all the Pakistani bats I've had thus far haven't been very good in that regard.

On another note, why do you say that G3/4 willow is so bad? Is it not durable or does the ball just not come off nicely? I guess I was just suckered into it by the light pickup and nice aesthetics of the Icon.

Cover Drive
26th January 2011, 10:58
CD, the problem I have with Pakistani bats is that being of a thin build and opening the batting, I need something with a VERY light pickup and all the Pakistani bats I've had thus far haven't been very good in that regard.

On another note, why do you say that G3/4 willow is so bad? Is it not durable or does the ball just not come off nicely? I guess I was just suckered into it by the light pickup and nice aesthetics of the Icon.

Hmm I would say it depends. If you use low middle bats (yes most Pakistani bats are low middle) then you'll get a heavy pickup. But if you use higher middle bat such as CA 12000 Plus, AS V3/V10 etc then pickup would be quite lighter.

Do you mind posting a picture of your Icon?

I'm not sure if this applies with all but it takes a while to open up plus I don't think these low end bats such as G3/4 would perform as well as G1/2.

To be honest, if it feels good in your hand and you're liking then it is fine because at the end you'd be playing with it. It all comes to your feel and how a bat feels in your hands. For some people a Kashmiri Willow can be better than English Willow.

shirazi_r
26th January 2011, 11:11
It should arrive in the mail tomorrow or Thursday InshAllah. I'll try and post photos when it does.

I'll give it a try when it comes around I guess, we'll see how it feels and plays.

As for Pakistani bats, I might look into some of them around the beginning of the season if I don't find the GM to be up to par. Where do you suggest I buy an AS or CA bat?

Knightrider
26th January 2011, 11:15
CD, the problem I have with Pakistani bats is that being of a thin build and opening the batting, I need something with a VERY light pickup and all the Pakistani bats I've had thus far haven't been very good in that regard.

On another note, why do you say that G3/4 willow is so bad? Is it not durable or does the ball just not come off nicely? I guess I was just suckered into it by the light pickup and nice aesthetics of the Icon.

Bro, I think some people here are obsessed about pretty looking bats and pretty grains etc and they suggest others to buy same expensive bats but what they dont know is grade 3/4 dont look that great but they often play better then much better looking expensive bats.

I've had experience with a GM+ 808 (grade 2-3) bigger shape bat 2.13 but pick up is like 2.9. I also have opened the batting and am abt same built as you. Its such a big advantage of having a heavyweight bat but with super light pick up. When batting I dont ever try to hit the ball when I can just stroke the ball for a boundary.

shirazi_r
26th January 2011, 11:22
Bro, I think some people here are obsessed about pretty looking bats and pretty grains etc and they suggest others to buy same expensive bats but what they dont know is grade 3/4 dont look that great but they often play better then much better looking expensive bats.

I've had experience with a GM+ 808 (grade 2-3) bigger shape bat 2.13 but pick up is like 2.9. I also have opened the batting and am abt same built as you. Its such a big advantage of having a heavyweight bat but with super light pick up. When batting I dont ever try to hit the ball when I can just stroke the ball for a boundary.

Thanks Majid. Seems like there are some differing opinions about the "cheapies". Personally, light pickup and performance are more important to me than a bat with 100 arrow straight grains.

As I mentioned before, the "white polycoated" (likely a fancy name for paint) back is the only thing that I dislike about it though I'll give it a try and let you guys know how it feels when it arrives and gets knocked in (no oiling required apparently).

PS. If your 2'13 GM+ picked up like 2'9, I wonder what my 2'10-2'11 will pick up like :D

Cover Drive
26th January 2011, 11:26
It should arrive in the mail tomorrow or Thursday InshAllah. I'll try and post photos when it does.

I'll give it a try when it comes around I guess, we'll see how it feels and plays.

As for Pakistani bats, I might look into some of them around the beginning of the season if I don't find the GM to be up to par. Where do you suggest I buy an AS or CA bat?

Yeah, pictures would be great to see.

Please do keep us updated :) (JazakAllah Khair :) )

I would say buying directly from factory is the best as you will get the best rates and more importantly a good stick.


Bro, I think some people here are obsessed about pretty looking bats and pretty grains etc and they suggest others to buy same expensive bats but what they dont know is grade 3/4 dont look that great but they often play better then much better looking expensive bats.

The chances of lower end such as G3/4 to play better than G1/2 are very very minimal and nearly impossible indeed.

Knightrider
26th January 2011, 11:39
Grains Vs Performance
- Introducing the Laver & Wood SPECIAL RESERVE


Happy New Year!

Please have a read of our January Newsletter below:

Here at Laver & Wood one of the main discussion topics we have with our customers revolves around the debate between looks and performance.

Examples of questions we get asked include:

- How does the number of grains affect a bat?
- Do bats with more grains perform better?
- Do bats with fewer grains last for longer?
- What is the deal with dark wood/light wood or a combination?

The aim in this newsletter is to give our opinion on the subject and to invite our readers to offer theirs.

Although personal opinion is of great importance when selecting a cleft we can say the following with a degree of certainty:

- Clefts with more grains perform well to begin with but ones with fewer grains tend to develop into more accomplished bats

The fact that bats with wider grains seem to develop further than ones with thinner grains revolves around their expected longer lifespan. A cleft with more grains tends to break up quicker than one with fewer grains so it therefore does not have the chance to develop as far. The more opportunity a bat has to hit a ball, the more chance it has to develop.

That having been said, this is the case only up to a point. Sometimes a bat can hit a ball too much and the cell structure of the surface can break down. This tends to result in decreased performance. It is due to this process that we recommend always tidying up and sanding your bat at the end of each season. This allows new wood to form the surface of the bat.

The dark wood/light wood issue involves heartwood (dark, from the middle of the tree) and sapwood (light, from towards the edge). Many people have claimed differing opinions about which one is best or even that it is better to have a combination. Our years of working in the bat-making industry have taught us that whether a bat is all sapwood, all heartwood or somewhere in between there appears to be practically zero difference in terms of overall performance.

The performance of a bat comes down to two factors: cell structure and pressing. A bat-maker may not be able to control the cell structure of a piece of willow but he must be adept at testing and judging his clefts. We, at Laver & Wood, test the performance of the willow at least four times during the bat-making process to ensure that the bats we make are up to our high standards.

The first testing stage is whilst the bat is still damp immediately after the initial pressing. This is then followed by a second test approximately thirty minutes later. After the cleft has then gone through our drying processes we test the performance again. If the cleft has passed all of these tests we then press it fully and test one further time. By this stage we know that we are well on the way to creating a top performing bat.

We test the performance in a variety of fashions, some more scientific than others. With James having made, and tested, more than 40,000 bats in his career he puts just as much emphasis on the feel of a bat as with the numbers the more scientific tests present. As with a lot of things, numbers and figures are great but we believe that it is really the feel of something that you can trust the most.

We completely understand that every cricketer has their own preferences regarding the looks of their perfect bat but it is clear that what a bat looks like, and how it performs, are two very different issues.

The latest edition to the Laver & Wood range – the Special Reserve – is for those people who place more emphasis on how a bat performs. These bats are made from our absolutely best performing clefts that do not quite satisfy the aesthetic requirements to be classed as one of our Grade 1 bats.

The Special Reserve is ideally suited to the player who is much more focussed on how far they want to hit the ball than how good the bat looks. We all want our bats to stand out from the crowd; it is just that the Special Reserve stands out predominantly on performance.

As stated above, this model of bat will not be to the taste of everyone but if you are someone who is focussed on using a bat that outperforms pretty much everything else out there then the Special Reserve is certainly the one for you.

As with our entire range of bats it is important to remember that they are designed and built for long life and lasting performance. All bats develop at different rates and the Special Reserve is no different. It is just that this new model will develop much further than your average cricket bat.

The Special Reserve is priced at NZ$495/A$419/250/US$419.

Photos and further details can be viewed on our website: http://www.laverwood.co.nz/spr_detail.php

Our kindest regards,

The Laver & Wood Team


Please forward this email on to any of your friends and colleagues who might be interested in this Special Offer.


Feel free to join the online revolution and follow us on Twitter (www.twitter.com/laverwood) and become a member of our Fan Page on Facebook!

We hope you find the information we send you useful and thank you for helping us continue to communicate with you through our email services.


Thank you from the
Laver & Wood Team

Cover Drive
26th January 2011, 11:43
To be honest, that is more like a sales post than a honest opinion LOL

Quick Single
26th January 2011, 22:12
Salam,

Bhai can you not just return the stick if you don't like the look/performance?

shirazi_r
27th January 2011, 00:49
Salam,

Bhai can you not just return the stick if you don't like the look/performance?

Wsalam QS,

It would be possible to return it though the return shipping would make it senseless to send back. As well, I hear that ProDirect aren't very good about returns.

Cover Drive
27th January 2011, 00:53
So you paid $35 for the bat?!?! Thats a good bargain but shipping ruins the taste for you...

Knightrider
27th January 2011, 01:58
The chances of lower end such as G3/4 to play better than G1/2 are very very minimal and nearly impossible indeed.
Have a read through this and do some research maybe talk few bat makers and then come back here after you learn basics about bat making etc.

A Grade 1 Blade

A Grade 1 is the best looking blade money can buy, though it will not necessarily play the best. There may be some red wood evident on the edge of the bat. The grain on the face will be straight and there will be at least 4 grains visible. There may be the odd small knot in the edge or back but the playing area should be clean.

A Grade 2 Blade

A Grade 2 blade is also very good quality and normally a larger amount of red wood can be seen on the edge of a bat, this has no effect on the playing ability of the bat it is purely cosmetic. Again there will be at least 4 straight grains on the face of the bat with maybe some blemishes, pin knots or "speck" visible.

A Grade 3 Blade

This is the grade we produce and sell most of and it offers very good value for money. A Grade 3 Blade has up to half colour across the bat and is sometimes bleached, again this has no direct relation to the playing ability of the wood, it just has less visual attraction. There will be a minimum of 4 grains on the face of the bat which may not always be perfectly straight. Again some small knots or a little 'butterfly' stain may be present with perhaps more prominent "speck".

A Grade 4 Blade

A Grade 4 Blade is normally over half colour or contains butterfly stain (see our page on Imperfections in Willow). This wood is also normally bleached just to make it "look better", it will still play as well as the other grades. Any number of grains are possible and the willow containing 'butterfly' stain is very strong, there could also be more "speck".

Cover Drive
27th January 2011, 02:00
Have a read through this and do some research maybe talk few bat makers and then come back here after you learn basics about bat making etc.

A Grade 1 Blade

A Grade 1 is the best looking blade money can buy, though it will not necessarily play the best. There may be some red wood evident on the edge of the bat. The grain on the face will be straight and there will be at least 4 grains visible. There may be the odd small knot in the edge or back but the playing area should be clean.

A Grade 2 Blade

A Grade 2 blade is also very good quality and normally a larger amount of red wood can be seen on the edge of a bat, this has no effect on the playing ability of the bat it is purely cosmetic. Again there will be at least 4 straight grains on the face of the bat with maybe some blemishes, pin knots or "speck" visible.

A Grade 3 Blade

This is the grade we produce and sell most of and it offers very good value for money. A Grade 3 Blade has up to half colour across the bat and is sometimes bleached, again this has no direct relation to the playing ability of the wood, it just has less visual attraction. There will be a minimum of 4 grains on the face of the bat which may not always be perfectly straight. Again some small knots or a little 'butterfly' stain may be present with perhaps more prominent "speck".

A Grade 4 Blade

A Grade 4 Blade is normally over half colour or contains butterfly stain (see our page on Imperfections in Willow). This wood is also normally bleached just to make it "look better", it will still play as well as the other grades. Any number of grains are possible and the willow containing 'butterfly' stain is very strong, there could also be more "speck".

LOL To be honest, good for you if you know a lot, I really do mean it! Also how many bat makers have you spoken to? And yes I remember SS G4 perform much better than Laver Signature, right?

Rant off!

Knightrider
27th January 2011, 03:42
I wish I could explain to you in a way that you will understand what I mean but you seem 2 clueless. Anyway I started a topic on this matter and have a browse thru the topic.

I asked why lower grade perform better then top grade bats

This the question I asked - I understand that the ping is the responsiveness of the ball rebounding off the blade. And that is partly dependent on the quality of willow. But quite often Grade 1 willow does not ping as well as other/lower grades?
So it is more dependent upon the pressing process then? And how the bat is made and how good the sweet spot is?

Person replied

Complicated question. I am not really best placed to answer this, but here we go.
Grade 1s are usually grade ones on Cosmetic, rather than performance grounds. This varies company to company, therefore with GN or something, we do see lower models that go just as well...as there isn't really much difference in the willow, one just looks nicer..
Pressing is key. The pro's bats are pressed more (I think...) than ours which means that they ping better...therefore we see that their bats go like rockets...
Hope that answers your question somewhat...
Sweet spot really depends on the skill that has gone in to making the bat...

Cover Drive
27th January 2011, 03:47
I wish I could explain to you in a way that you will understand what I mean but you seem 2 clueless. Anyway I started a topic on this matter and have a browse thru the topic.

I asked why lower grade perform better then top grade bats

This the question I asked - I understand that the ping is the responsiveness of the ball rebounding off the blade. And that is partly dependent on the quality of willow. But quite often Grade 1 willow does not ping as well as other/lower grades?
So it is more dependent upon the pressing process then? And how the bat is made and how good the sweet spot is?

Person replied

Complicated question. I am not really best placed to answer this, but here we go.
Grade 1s are usually grade ones on Cosmetic, rather than performance grounds. This varies company to company, therefore with GN or something, we do see lower models that go just as well...as there isn't really much difference in the willow, one just looks nicer..
Pressing is key. The pro's bats are pressed more (I think...) than ours which means that they ping better...therefore we see that their bats go like rockets...
Hope that answers your question somewhat...
Sweet spot really depends on the skill that has gone in to making the bat...

If I'm correct soft pressing bats "ping" more whereas the bolded part say hard pressed pings more, no ?

Also many companies do not grade there bats on cosmetically, hence, grade them on performance.