Butterfly tenergy 80

Tenergy 80 Review – part 3

In this final part of the Tenergy 80 review, I test the few properties that I missed before, check the ease of removing glue, comment on rubber durability and summarise my conclusions.

 

Counter-looping

I think that counter-looping is definitely one of the strengths of the Tenergy series, and the T80 is no exception, making counter-looping easy and powerful. Although the T80 is definitely less sensitive to spin compared to the T05, in counter-looping (close to the table) I did not really notice much difference, and it still performance beautifully. If you have the reflexes and footwork, counter-looping always seems a better option than blocking for the T80, and this seems true for all the Tenergies.

 

Chopping away from the table

Although I doubt this rubber was meant for chopping, nor is 2.1mm likely the right thickness for the best control (not for my skill level anyway), I decided to test chopping as a few people had asked. Well after about 10mins trying to chop some heavy spin loops I gave up. I found that the bat angle to be a little too sensitive for my liking… I got some some good chop one, only for the next and similar looking loop to fly a few feet over the end. I was getting good spin on my chop, but nothing spectacular. Of course a thinner sponge could make all the difference, but since I don’t have one, all I can conclude is that a 2.1mm T80 on this blade was far from ideal for chopping.

 

Hitting / smashing

I always like to test how well a rubber / blade works for smashing high balls, particularly if they’re very spinny. I found the T05 to be pretty average for this, as heavy spin seemed to bite a little, so significant adjustment for spin, and solid contact is required or accuracy will be affected. I found the T80 to be a little better for this, requiring less adjustment for heavy spin. If you make solid contact on the ball, it pretty much goes where you want it to go, with good pace.

 

Tuning / Boosting Tenergy 80

I know that quite a few players, particularly at the higher levels, boost their Tenergy rubbers. I’ve discussed the legality of Boosters & tuners in a previous article, so I won’t go into this here. Boosting rubbers is mainly a treatment of the sponge (although it stretches the top-sheet), so since the T80 appears to use an identical sponge to the T05, I can see no reason why the T80 would not boost just as well.

 

Durability

The Tenergy series has always been one of the more durable sheet in my opinion, although some would disagree with me. After about 3 session, the topsheet still looks as new, and retains it’s initial dull shine as you can see below.

tenergy 80 durability

tenergy 80 durability

Judging by the insignificant wear after 3 sessions, I can see no reason why this sheet should not last at least as long as the other Tenergy sheets.

Glue removal

I had glued the rubber 4 times with Donic Vario glue, which held it down very well and made it easy to remove. Of course the sheet ended up with several layers of glue, which I felt I should remove before I return the sheet to Butterfly Australia (so that others can test it as well). Here is the sheet before glue removal… not pretty ๐Ÿ™‚

tenergy_80_sheet_back_glueGlue removal is much harder from some sheets compared to other. The very soft or brittle ones tend to be worst ones, and the sheet will end up full of pits. Removal from this sheet was relatively easy, as it just ‘rolled off’ when rubbed with your fingers as shown:

tenergy_80_sheet_back_glue2

I did speed up the process, as it seemed to be real easy, and in my haste I still managed to create a few pits… luckily nothing big enough that it should affect play.

tenergy_80_sheet_back_glue3

tenergy_80_sheet_back_glue5

tenergy_80_sheet_back_glue6

I ended up with quite a big blob of glue, weighing almost 3g! I weighed the sheet after removal, and it was 46g.

tenergy_80_sheet_back_glue4

Conclusions:

Although this rubber does not offer something dramatically different or better, like when the Tenergy 05 first hit the centre stage, I do think this is very nice new addition from Butterfly, which does fill some of the gaps in the Tenergy range.

The T80 being more forgiving and easier to use should appeal to more of the developing players or lower level player, as the technique does not need to be as good to reap the benefits of the Tenergy rubbers. The improvements in the short game and improved blocking ability should appeal to the current Tenergy fans as well as the higher level players, as it does seem to gain more than what it loses. It also seems to retain it’s very good counter-looping ability, so I can’t really see much downside when coming from the T05 apart from a slight loss of spin, but several improvements.

So is it for everyone? Well I think with the right blade and appropriate sponge thickness, it can be made to work for an even wide range of players. However not everyone can afford the relatively high price tag, nor is everyone willing to pay this much for a rubber, and other manufacturer are also coming up with similar performance (although not quite the same feel), with Donic Bluefire or Tibhar 1Q probably the closest I’ve come across.

Still I expect this will be a popular rubber amongst the Butterfly fans, and may well draw some new players towards the Butterfly brand.

 

Click here to read part 1, about my visual inspection and comparison of the Tenergy 80 rubber

Click here to read part 2, about the practical test and review of the Tenergy 80 rubber.

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