I recently bought a Yonex NanoSpeed 8000 badminton racket. I had one a couple of years ago, and really liked it. Those models are discontinued, and hard to find.
However, the new acquisition had a big problem.
The grip size was G5 ( very small ). I am used to play with G3 (medium size)...
I tried to adapt, put many overgrips, but the magic was just not there, and I stopped using this racket. Something had to be done, since I was crying all day long. Putting many layers of tape makes the racket oval instead of hexagonal, and you lose precision on where to put your fingers...
When I saw in my garage an old broken badminton racket sitting near a pile of junk, I checked the size, it was a G3.
So I decided to try to swap the handles !!!
That sound stupid scary, but really, it was easy.
Ready ? Lets get started.
Step 1: Remove Current Handle.
Here all you need is a knife, and a phillips screwdriver.
The handle is made from balsa, which is a very soft wood that is easy to carve.
On the new racket,
- Start by removing the tape,
- Remove end cap.
- Remove the set screw.
- Carve out balsa until you see carbon fiber shaft. The shaft is only entering the handle for 3 inches or so.
- Remove plastic cone. you can use a 1/16 drill on this step to break the wood.
- Using sand paper, remove all traces of epoxy and balsa wood on the shaft.
That is really scary, and once you started this, there is no turning back.
Step 2: Recuperate the Old Handle.
On the old racket, using a metal saw, cut the shaft as close as possible to handle.
Carbon fiber is fragile, so it has a tendency to crack, take your time, and cut slowly to make sure that the tube is nice after the cut.
Take a drill with several bits and start to drill larger and larger holes in the old shaft that is entering the handle.
This way, you will slowly remove all carbon fibers of the previous shaft in the handle without having to align anything.
The drill bit will self align itself in the hole. Make sure that the hole is perfectly aligned.
Remove material untill the new shaft can enter the hole.
Step 3: Glue New Handle.
Once the handle fits inside the new racket, you can glue it.
You will need epoxy glue to perform this step.
Epoxy hardens in 5 minutes, so it is important that you make sure that you can adjust the badminton racket handle position and length quick enough before its settle.
Practice before !
Using an old badminton racket, I measured the total length of racket and made a mark on where it should be glued.
The alignment is also important. You can put the racket flat on a table and make sure that the flat edge is perfectly parralel to the panier.
Once that you are confident that the gluing process is going to go well, mix epoxy, and glue !
Once that the glue has harden, put back the little screw, tape, and enjoy !!!
Mine is now very fun to play with.