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Taping your wood bat barrel is not really necessary, depending on the wood.

Posted on June 7, 2017 by MaxBat

Have you ever seen someone put athletic tape on the barrel of their wood bat? I bet you’ve either wondered why they do that, or you’ve followed suit and wrapped your wood bat barrel in white athletic tape. Yes?

So, why is that a thing?  Here’s the answer.  MLB players would wrap their ASH wood bat barrels for batting practice to help prevent the grains from flaking/separating.  Because of the grain structure of ASH, it was seen as a preventative measure to help the longevity of the wood bat.  This was done for many years before Maple bats and Birch bats hit the scene.

Here’s the important point however.  Maple bats and Birch bats are much different than Ash bats.  Maple bats and Birch bats are a closed grain wood, and will NOT flake like Ash (an open pore wood).  Therefore, the more you hit with a Maple bat or a Birch bat, the grains compress more and more, whereas the more contact with an Ash bat will result in “wearing out the wood”.

So do you need to wrap your wood bat barrel in athletic tape? What about a coaches fungo? The answer is no. It’s not necessary.  But if you’re contemplating this, it’s really only going to benefit an Ash wood bat, and help prevent premature grain flaking and separation.  Again, Maple bats and Birch bats aren’t going to flake like an Ash bat.  It’s not going to hurt anything if you tape up the barrels of your Maple bat or Birch bat, but it’s not going to accomplish anything either.  Some guys just like the look, and there’s nothing wrong with that.  You gotta look the part, right?

Check out the pro MaxBat coaches fungos here.  Guaranteed to enable you to hit moon shots to your outfielders, over and over again.

Categories: Maple bats

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Wood bat purchasing decisions. What is an X-OUT wood bat?

Posted on May 30, 2017 by MaxBat

“What’s wrong with them?” is most often the first question asked when players consider purchasing an X-OUT wood bat.

Many things might cause a wood bat getting kicked out of the regular production process and being deemed an X-OUT.

First and foremost, we probably employ the pickiest staff who custom craft your wood bat.  And that’s a good thing (actually a GREAT thing).

We consider quality control a priority during our wood bat production.  Each order is scrutinized, no matter the customer.

  • Grain structure
    • We examine every inch of the wood bat billet to determine which end is best suited for the handle.
  • Proper weight
    • MaxBats are weighed at least 6 times throughout the production process.  If the bat is off in weight, it’s simply deemed an X-OUT, even though there is nothing structurally wrong with the wood.
  • Appearance (mineral streaks)
    • Sometimes a dark brown, black, or gray streak can run the length of a wood bat barrel after the billet is turned.  This is caused by minerals in the soil in which the tree grew.  It’s nothing more than a stain. IF the wood bat order called for a light colored barrel, it will probably now become an X-OUT wood bat.
  • Straightness of grain
    • Even if we choose a wood bat billet that appears to have the straightest of grains, after a billet is turned into a wood bat, slight imperfections in the grain might cause the staff to reject it.  This doesn’t happen too often because of the way the logs are processed and turned into wood bat billets, but we still rely on a number of quality control measures to ensure that your wood bat is what you’re expecting from MaxBat.

Another question about our X-OUTS is “what models are they?”.  The models will vary, as they are a result of normal wood bat production.  They could be one of our more popular wood bat models on our website, or they could be a completely new wood bat profile being drawn up for one of our professional clients.  Most of the wood bat models that we make have a common 15/16″ medium handle, so most of the X-OUTS will feature that handle size as well.

So, is purchasing an X-OUT a viable option for an individual player or a team? Absolutely. Most players who purchase them are looking for a wood bat to use in the batting cage, ore perhaps aren’t too comfortable swinging a wood bat yet.  Many of our customers who have purchased our X-OUTS no longer ask “What’s wrong with them?”, but instead tell us, “I don’t know why you guys call these X-OUTS…..they’re perfect”.

 

Categories: Wood Baseball Bats, Wood bat, Wood Bats

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Wood bats and pre-season training

Posted on February 2, 2017 by MaxBat

Simply swinging a wood bat can really help hitters develop faster. First off, wooden bats tend to be weighted differently than aluminum / metal bats.  This doesn’t always mean that a wood bat is heavier, it means that because the barrel of wood bat is solid (instead of hollow like an aluminum bat), the weight distribution is going to be/feel different. This difference alone helps hitters develop the muscles they use to swing, and really builds bat speed faster than just working with aluminum.  Professional coaches often say that players MUST utilize their legs and hips to effectively hit with a wood bat, thus training with a wood bat will help teach leg drive.  Also, the sweet spot on wooden bats is smaller than that of a metal bat, and forces hitters to be more selective at the plate. Because wood bats have smaller sweet spots, it forces hitters to only swing at good pitches.

Typically hitters who train with wood bats swing at fewer bad pitches, and wait for that pitch they can drive on a more consistent basis. Being more selective at the plate and having more bat speed are two things that coaches at all levels look for when they evaluate hitters. Simply switching to wooden bats for practice will help hitters develop the skills necessary to play and be more successful at the next level. With the school season approaching, and tryouts on the horizon, do yourself a favor and start swinging a wood bat. You’ll see improvement in your production at the plate in no time.

Categories: Metal bats, Wood Baseball Bats, Wood bat, Wood Bats

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What’s the best barrel size for a wood bat?

Posted on December 12, 2016 by MaxBat

MaxBat Model R10

The MaxBat R10 is an example of a Medium barrel wood bat. Medium barrel wood bats are made from High Density wood billets.

Wood baseball bats offer a variety of barrel sizes, from Medium to XL. So what wood bat barrel size is the best for you?

The first thing you might want to consider is the type of feel you want with your wood bat.  Are you looking for a baseball bat with balance, or maybe one that’s more end-loaded?  Wood bats with Medium barrels will have more balance, while those with XL barrels will be more end-loaded.  That’s simply due to the fact that each wood bat barrel has different mass.  The less mass, the lighter the feel.  The more mass, the heavier the feel.

Looking at it from a wood baseball bat production standpoint, wood bats with Medium barrels are made from higher density wood than wood bats with a Large or XL barrel.  And that’s because the increased mass of Large and XL barrels require the bat maker to use a lower density wood billet in order to compensate for the increased weight.

Density equals strength.  If a wood baseball bat is made from high density wood, it’s going to be stronger, have more pop, and ultimately last longer.

  • Medium barrel wood bat = High Density (strongest)
  • Large barrel wood bat = Medium Density
  • XL barrel wood bat = Low Density

So, what’s the best barrel size for a wood bat? It’s ultimately up to the individual player, BUT the smaller the barrel, the stronger the wood bat.

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Help in choosing weight drops for wood bats

Posted on December 1, 2016 by MaxBat

Let’s face it.  The majority of baseball players are conditioned to think that swinging a lighter baseball bat is the best thing they can do for their performance at the plate.

“I need to swing a -3 wood bat”.

“I want and need the lightest wood bat possible”.

“No way I can swing a -2 wood bat. That’s too heavy”.

Baseball players need to stop thinking like this. Why?

1. Weight drop rules only apply to METAL bats.  There are no rules in place that apply to wood bats that mandate you absolutely have to swing a wood bat that is a -3 weight drop.

2. The lighter a wood bat, the weaker the wood.  In order to produce a wood bat that is a -3, the manufacturer needs to start with a lighter wood billet.  The billet is lighter because the wood is lower in density.  The lower the density, the weaker the wood.  If you start with a lower density wood billet, you’re more likely to make a wood bat that is weaker than a wood bat made from a “heavier” / high density billet.

3. A weight diff16StackOfPennieserence of 1 ounce (-2 compared to -3) is virtually undetectable in a wood bat. A stack of ten pennies equals 1 ounce. That extra ounce is distributed throughout the bat’s length and not focused on the barrel’s end.  Picture a bat with ten pennies placed on it that are spaced from knob to barrel end.

4. Swinging a -2 wood bat, compared to a -3, will NOT reduce your bat speed.  Remember that some of that weight (inconsequential weight) is located in the handle, thus evenly balanced.

5. -2 wood bats, compared to -3 wood bats, are made from harder/stronger wood. Not only will they last longer, they will hit the ball further.  Basic physics tells us, and proves that the more mass you apply to something (in this case, a bat on ball), the more force you will apply to it.

So, do you want to perform better when using a wood bat? Swing -2 instead of -3. If you’re a parent looking for a Youth wood bat, avoid bats that advertise large barrel -10 bats at all costs. You’ll just be throwing away money. Youth wood bats should never be lighter than -7.

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