Disclaimer: I’ve bought this thing from my own money and I’ve not been sponsored in any way to write this post. I just think the product is great and that the BC community should know about it.
Part 1: The gripper module
I’ve been eyeing this thing ever since the first pictures and short videos were appearing early this year and was really sad that it was only available for the newer V14 WISE generations. Upgrading the WISE to a V14 in parallel was out of the question, so I stopped caring about it.
Until about two weeks ago, when a trusted stringer colleague mentionend that now there was also a version for the old V12 and behold… there it was:
After sending a couple of messages with the seller to make sure that the “Old Version” was indeed compatible with the V12 and older WISE versions, I decided to take the plunge and go for it.
Shipping only took a couple of days until it showed up at my doorstep. First thought that went through my mind holding it: Good lord, this thing is MASSIVE!
As we can see, it’s higher (25 mm) and longer (30 mm) than the original gripper which on most existing setups will cause some issues to maintain a 360° racket rotation. The needed modifications on the machine are a whole separate topic and will be covered in a following post.
OMG. The overall build quality seems to be amazing. CNC machined metal wherever you look and whatever you touch. The gripper plates have a slightly structured surface (hard to take a picture though) and are moving smooth as silk:
Solid construction, CNC machined parts wherever you look and all the electronic switches used are standard parts that can be easily replaced just in case. Also, the gripper module itself is sealed with another two separage screws, so there is no risk that the whole thing explodes on you if you just want to have a look inside. Just very, very nicely done.
In part 2, I will show the modifications needed to install it on my StringMaster Deluxe. Spoiler: It was no big deal.