Find all the information you will need to help you design you very own custom made fantail bat. To find out more about the process of making a Fantail cricket bat click here.
ENGLISH WILLOW GRADING
A Grade LE (Limited Edition) is the best looking and performing blade money can buy and is in the top 4% of willow. The grain on the face will be straight and there will be at least 10 grains visible. These are an incredibly good piece of willow turned into the finest bat imaginable. We don’t produce many of these a year as the quality of willow we use for this grade is hard to come by.
A Grade 1 is the best looking blade money can buy, though it will not necessarily play the best. There may be some red wood evident on the edge of the bat. The grain on the face will be straight and there will be at least 4 grains visible. There may be the odd small knot in the edge or back but the playing area should be clean.
A Grade 2 is also very good quality and normally a larger amount of red wood can be seen on the edge of a bat, this has no effect on the playing ability of the bat it is purely cosmetic. Again there will be at least 4 straight grains on the face of the bat with maybe some blemishes, pin knots or "speck" visible.
This grade offers very good value for money. A Grade 3 Blade has up to half colour across the bat, again this has no direct relation to the playing ability of the wood, it just has less visual attraction. There will be a minimum of 4 grains on the face of the bat which may not always be perfectly straight. Again some small knots or a little 'butterfly' stain may be present with perhaps more prominent "speck".
A full shape allows off centre strikes to be more powerful but it isn't possible with the maximum edge size in lighter weights.
A semi-concaved shape is in between concaved and full and is balanced between big edges and good off centre power.
A concaved shape allows a maximum spine and maximum edge at a light weight. Off centre strikes aren't as powerful as a full shape.
SWEET SPOT POSITION
The sweet spot or middle of the bat is the area of the blade where you achieve the largest amount of power in the shot you are playing. The middle is usually dictated by the profile through the back of the bat.
Most players will have a bat with the normal sweet spot . This would be about 4” to 12” from the toe. A bat with a normal sweet spot will suit a batsman who plays the full range of shots. This sweet spot does not favor any style in particular.
A high sweet spot is usually 5” to 13” from the toe. This bat suits a batsman who opens or prefers playing short pitched bowling, and off the back foot. The weight distribution is higher up the blade, meaning that the bat speed is faster. This type of bat suits the player that likes to cut, hook and pull, in other words, the controlled player.
A low sweet spot is usually 3” to 11” from the toe. This type of bat suits a player that enjoys driving the ball and playing aggressively. It is particularly suited to wickets that do have much bounce. The pick up may be affected due to the weight of bat being nearer to the toe.
If you have a bat with a high sweet spot you need to be hitting the ball high on the blade regularly to get the best out of the bat.
As a rule, we mention where the sweet spot is so that you can make the correct decision.
The oval handle: The oval handle provides more strength to the handle and helps to diffuse the shock waves created from the ball meeting the blade. The oval shape in the lower handle also gives the bat a better directional feel. It is hard to grip the bat too hard with the bottom hand. One can only hold with thumb and forefinger, which encourages the top hand to control the shot.
The round handle: The round handle is best suited to those who like to use their bottom hand to hit the ball hard and lift it.
The square toe is that it gives a superior stance position which helps with controlling the shot also there is no wood wastage. More prone to damage as any sharp corner is vulnerable to being blown by a cricket ball. the thing it does to is make your bat look wider which may make you feel more confident
The round toe should help prevent chipping of the bat toe particularly if the batsman is a crease tapper. The round toe makes it a lot easier to slide your bat in the crease when running and prevents the corner of the bat digging into the grass.
A lighter bat is recommended usually in the region of 2lbs7ozs – 2lbs9ozs. This is due to the faster bat speed required when facing the new ball. A heavier bat means that there will be a slightly slower reaction time, which can be the difference between playing the ball too early or too late (another point would be “the difference between a thick or thin edge”).
A slightly heavier weight would often be required due to getting into a more aggressive style while still retaining the balance needed for facing faster bowlers. 2lbs8ozs-2lbs10ozs.
Lower order batsmen should be particular about the bat they use. Being in the lower order means you need every advantage you can get. Lower order batsmen do not have the skill that those batting up the order have, and having the correct bat can dramatically improve your batting performance.