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Wilson Blade V7 100L Racquet Review

by Henrik Wallensten

When I first tested the new Blade V7 98, I was struck by its comfort. But I wanted more spin/power. So here is my Wilson Blade V7 100L Racquet Review.

The update to the Wilson Blade line was very impressive. No harsh vibrations, just soft and comfortable. The 98 sq inch head size racquets both had a pretty high swing weight and low flex, so you must be an aggressive and advanced player to really benefit from the control of these frames. If you don’t hit through your shots, the Blade 98 will in a way harm your game and provide easy shots for your opponents. That is why I decided to do this Wilson Blade V7 100L racquet review. Read more about this frame on the Wilson official website.

A thin-framed, flexible 98 sq. inch frame is not for everyone but luckily Wilson has some more versions of the Blade. I really “wanted” to like the Blade because I think it´s a good looking racquet and some of my favorite players (Tsitsipas and Juan Ignacio Londero) use at least the PJ of the Blade. But I must be honest with myself. At 41 years of age, I don’t have the peak of my tennis in front of me. To be able to compete with the young guns I need some extra pace,  spin, and a larger sweet-spot out in the corners when on the run and defensive. I was looking through the line-up and saw that the Blade 100L with its rounder 100 sq inch head-shape and fairly open 16/19 string pattern could be spot on for me and my game. The only concern was the somewhat high flex of 69 RA.

Customizing my Wilson Blade 100L

Customizing the Wilson Blade 100LAt only 285 grams of weight and an unstrung balance of 33 cm, the Blade 100 L is like a wet dream for customizing. The swing weight strung is around 316 and that makes room for some lead in the head as well. I usually customize my frames to around 315 to 320 grams unstrung weight, a balance between 31.5 and 32 cm and SW strung of around 320-325. It all depends on the power-level of the frame. The more power, the lighter weight, balance, and SW to get more control.

The 69 RA flex had to be tackled in some way though, and what I did was to order it in one grip size smaller than normal. I then removed the grip and installed a grip enlarger (a heat-shrink plastic sleeve) that is applied with a heat gun, so it sits molded to the handle. I then re-applied the base-grip and weighted the frame. The heat-shrink sleeve adds a good 20-22 grams, so the weight of the frame was now around 305 grams unstrung. I injected about 5 grams of silicone (read how to do it here!) into the handle (just open the butt-cap and inject) and placed about 5 grams of lead under the plastic bumper in the top to get some more mass in the top to beef up the SW and thereby get some more plow and power.

Matched frames

Matched pair of Wilson BladesI have two Blade 100 L and on one of the frames the balance was more head heavy and no lead was needed. I strung one frame with Topspin Cyberflash 1.30 and one frame with Luxilon Alu Power Soft 1.25, added Wilson Pro overgrip on both frames and a Pacific Vibra ring dampener and was ready to hit the court!

The difference between the 100L and the 98 is major! You have some of the control from the 98 versions in the 100 L version, but in every other category, the 100 L shines for me. It has much more power, a really good spin production, a much bigger sweetspot and is overall easier to use. I don’t need to generate the same racquet head speed with the 100L version as with the 98 versions. I can get good depth and power on both serves and groundstrokes and volleys don’t need to be dead center to be effective.

Many of you might think I had to string the frames tight to get any control, but the answer is no to that question. The Luxilon was strung at 48 lbs and the Cyberflash at 49 lbs.

Customize or not customize?

About the Wilson Blade V7 100L

Compared to how the frame is now when I customized them to my specs with uncustomized version is not that big though. The frame has some major plow already in-stock version and it´s solid enough even against big guns. The silicone and heat shrink makes it feel more muted compared to the stock version but it´s also playable in the stock version. The RA of 69 is not so present in the comfort at all.

The stock version is a very good weapon of choice for younger or older players seeking good power and stability in a lighter frame without sacrificing to much control. If you are an adult player with a good level of your game, this frame will also work if you add some weight to it. Not much needed though as it is very solid already from the start.

Is it a keeper?

It would be interesting to see how the Blade 100 L is compared to the slightly longer and bigger 104 Blade-version. The 104 has a very soft RA 60 that could be good for those of you who wants a very soft and comfortable longer frame. Stay tuned for that one and we´ll see what Wilson says about us testing that version also.

For me and my game, how will the Blade 100L continue its journey? Well, as it feels right now, I will place my much loved Yonex Vcore 100 in the bag and use the Blade 100 L instead. For my game, the Blade 100 L is a winner at the moment.

Thanks to Henrik Wallensten for this Wilson Blade V7 100L racquet review – a frame that is easy to overlook! Lighter frames can play very nice with some customization. If you want to read more about Henrik’s approach to customization, read this post.

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13 comments

Jay Escobar January 3, 2020 - 4:20 pm

Is the Blade foam filled from factory or hollow?

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Tennisnerd January 4, 2020 - 10:36 am

My guess is hollow, but I am not a hundred percent sure.

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Hans Hagberg January 4, 2020 - 8:35 pm

Interesting!
I reached some of the same conclusions. I’m an even older Swede who decided to go full Tennisnerd and restore some of my previous superpowers after many years absence from the sport. The racquet market was confusing and I didn’t know what to start with. Used to play the Wilson T2000 (Jimmy Connors…) steel bat long originally. I got myself one control oriented and one speed oriented racquet just to get started and see where it went.
For speed, I picked the Wilson Blade SW 104 Serena W. autograph model. It would be very interesting to see Tennisnerd test that one. It’s not like anything else I have play tested. A lot of power but a somewhat tight string pattern. Also extra long and a bit head heavy. A monster for serves compared to anything I tried so far. It’s so much more effective for serves I’m toying with the idea of using it just for serve games and switching to something else when returning. So I have started customizing my 2 different sticks to make them a bit more like to see if the dual specialized racquet concept may work.
Please try and review it!

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Henrik Wallensten January 4, 2020 - 8:37 pm

Jay; it was hollow

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Henrik Wallensten January 4, 2020 - 8:50 pm

Hans: I’m also very interested in trying both the 104 and the 104 SW. The regular 104 is soft flex 60 RA and an open 16/19 but big surface and longbody. 104 SW is tighter but also a lot stiffer. Will ask Wilson if they want us to test both

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Gazz January 13, 2020 - 6:38 am

How do you think this setup compares to the Prince TT 310?

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Gazz February 1, 2020 - 11:57 am

Didn’t hear back from you on my earlier question so went ahead and bought on anyway.
I have to say that I’m very impressed. This is an excellent racket to customise.

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Tennisnerd February 3, 2020 - 7:11 am

Happy you found a nice racquet!

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chris February 4, 2020 - 9:29 am

Tennisnerd did you play with this raquet?

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Howard January 27, 2021 - 2:28 pm

Great article. I’m thinking if i should get this 100L or the Blade 98L v6 to customise.

I’m currently using stock Pure Strike 98 16/19 from 2017. Any recommendations Tennisnerd?

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Tennisnerd January 28, 2021 - 10:24 pm

Go for the Blade 98L

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Pieter de Rijk March 2, 2021 - 7:09 pm

Yes, Henrik, thanks for an excellent review indeed. I did as you suggested, I am testing a Blade 100 L right now. And it does wonders for my beginners game at 61 years of age. I suppose my earlier rackets were a little too heavy. But now, especially on the backhand, I feel I have more time to prepare and suddenly I’m hitting real backhands. At the same time I discovered the Pro Staff Light (not the CV version) from 2017, I believe. Also an excellent racket. As not many of the Light versions get serious reviews they tend to be underestimated. My only worry is finding the right string for such a light racket. Luxilon Alu Power and the like are to stiff for me and my tennis arm. I was thinking of a Hyper-G, maybe the soft version. Have you got any suggestions for the weight to string it at, especially with this racket? Thanks again.

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Joss Gardner March 24, 2021 - 11:52 am

I’ve done these same kind of customisations for both the Blade 100L v7 and the Pro Staff 100L BLX (2014) – both make superb platform rackets. The stiffness of the BLD100L ends up being the only problem, in my opinion, otherwise the plushness, plow, power and maneuverability are all there and it’s a relatively easy racket for intermediates to play with. Modifying the PS100L gave better results for me. The RA of the PS100L is only 65, so with added mass at 3 and 9 to bring the sweetspot out, and some more weight higher up for added plow, the end result is a spin-friendly (16×18), all-court, demon of a players’ racket – albeit a tweener version for my ageing joints! These modded PS100L’s have been my favourite racket for the last 5 years and I’ve come to realise that the box beam throat section (which the Blades don’t have of course) gives me an extra level of crispness, feel and touch, which really suits my playing style (I haven’t been able to find that feel in any other racket since but I recently bought an Angell TC101 which has a similar box beam throat, and am waiting for the courts to open so I can try it out!) The BLD100L v7 feels both overly muted and overly stiff for me, giving much more power and stability, but I can’t really pull off those instinctive improvisation shots that I seem to do without thinking with the PS100L. There’s something special when you find a racket that just clicks for you like that… and such a pity when they get discontinued! (Pro Staff 100L BLX (2014) are only found 2nd hand these days). Happy modding to all!

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