What is a Hollow-Core wooden design?

What is a Hollow-Core wooden design?

Wooden paddles have been around as long as pickleball. The first paddles were made by the inventor of pickleball in his garage by cutting out the shape of an oversized ping pong paddle from a sheet of plywood on his bandsaw. 

That very first design got refined slightly by making a more ergonomic handle and shaping the paddle slightly, but innovation in the wooden paddle has basically stood there for the past sixty years. 

Because they were and are made from solid plywood these paddles are very durable, and somewhat sustainable - but that is about all they have going for them. They tend to be very heavy and fairly dead - the weight and density of the paddle make it very hard to control or finesse a shot coming off of them.

Meanwhile, huge amounts of flashy innovations have been poured into polypropylene core paddles, and wooden paddles have pretty much been written off. But the issue was never wood, the issue was the design.

Imagine a polypropylene paddle that, instead of having a honeycomb core that is mostly air, was completely solid all the way through, It would weigh twice as much and have no feel to it.

The design of our paddles incorporates the best material properties of wood with the ingenuity of a mostly hollow core to bring together the best of both worlds.

It starts with basswood lumber that is milled and joined into sheets. Basswood is an incredibly lightweight wood that still, if used properly, is very strong. The basswood sheets are then CNC milled to remove most of the material, leaving a web of structural wooden members that support and create a surface for adhering the faces.

The combination of the basswood's natural strength to weight ratio with the subtractive processing yields a structural wooden core layer that weighs in at less than 5oz. 

We then adhere a two ply veneer to the surface of the core which not only creates a beautiful and durable playing surface, it also strengthens the core layer by glueing grain at 90 degree angles.

In the end we have a paddle that is both very close to and very far from the original plywood paddles. 

We now have a provisional patent for the hollow-core wooden pickleball paddle.

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