Many players asked me many questions about the Chinese Double Happiness Hurricane 3 rubber. That the top Chinese players like Ma Long, Fan Zhendong, Xu Xin are using. Some of the most common topics are:
- Why the pro players boost their forehand Hurricane 3 heavily?
- The difference between the DHS Hurricane 3 commercial, provincial, national version?
- Comparison between the DHS H3 and the H3 Neo version?
- Or should I buy the DHS Hurricane 3 Blue Sponge or Orange sponge?
I’ve explained some of these questions somewhere on this site. You can find all of these answers in How to Choose the Best Equipment.
For example, if you want to know about the difference between the Blue Sponge, and Orange Sponge, just search “Blue Sponge PingSunday” on Google. And boom! You found it!
If you hesitate to choose which version (commercial, national, or provincial) Hurricane 3 to buy, I recommend you read the article about the personal Ma Long’s Hurricane 3 rubber.
Today, I will explain why top Chinese players tune their forehand rubber (Hurricane 3 Blue Sponge)? And where to buy the real DHS Hurricane 3 rubbers.
Blue sponge vs Orange sponge
What is the difference between the Blue sponge and Orange Sponge of Chinese Table Tennis Rubber? Blue Sponge is harder than the orange sponge.
You will find that almost the top Chinese players use Hurricane 3 Blue Sponge. It’s just because the Hurricane 3 blue sponge version (more info) is harder than the Orange version (more info) (to +1 to 1.5 hardness degree DHS scale).
Due to the difference in sponge hardness,
- All male Chinese players use Blue Sponge. Because male can hit very hard on the forehand side.
- While most of the female players use Orange Sponge. (Orange Sponge is a little bit softer). Except for Liu Shiwen, Zhu Yulin and Wang Manyu, they are using Hurricane 3 Blue Sponge on their Forehand. (to deal with the success of Mima Ito New Style)
Note: When you buy an Orange Hurricane 3 or Hurricane 3 Neo version (Old version). You need to use the faster blade!
Hurricane 3 Blue Sponge vs Hurricane 3 Orange Sponge
It depends on your style. If you play a lot of control, slow loop, you can play with Orange sponge or the old version of Hurricane 3 (non-NEO version). You need to hit harder to use Blue Sponge. It depends on your style and what blade you use. Orange Sponge needs a stiffer and harder blade.
But nowadays, with the new poly ball, I recommend you choose the “Blue Sponge”. Which is harder, faster! The new ball is bigger, and heavier now. That’s why many top players changed from the old H3 to the new blue sponge version.
And if you found it too hard, you can always “tune” it, or “boost” the rubber (like many top Chinese players do).
Why do we need to tune Hurricane 3 rubber?
Why top Chinese players, or all of the provincial and national Chinese players heavily tuned their rubbers? It’s the truth! No doubt!
Here, for example, I will show you some evident proofs.
Guide: How to tune Chinese rubbers with booster!
Here is the equipment of the Chinese players at the recent Asian Games 2018 Table Tennis in Jakarta (shared by Hung Nguyen).
Can you see something on these photos?
Here are 2 things:
- On the Forehand side: All the Chinese rubbers use the Hurricane 3 Blue Sponge version. Hardness about 39-42 (DHS hardness scale). And they boosted the rubbers heavily. How to know that. The boosted rubber has the pimples stretched.
- The booster makes the rubber expand. So you can clearly see the “pimples” grow up!
- You can easily “see”, and “count” these pimples (because of the tuner). While the normal version, you can not see the pimples!
- Even on the backhand side, with the Butterfly Tenergy 05, they also boost it!
- Some players can switch to the softer version of Hurricane 3, and use it on the backhand side instead of the Tenergy 05.
Unboosted vs boosted rubbers
The unboosted, the normal version rubber:
Let’s compared with the normal version (without booster).
This is the normal version of Tenergy 05, used by Harimoto Tomokazu (Order it on Amazon).
Read it here: What is Harimoto Tomokazu equipment?
And this is the “tuned” version of the Tenergy 05, used by the Chinese player.
Can you spot the difference?
- The upper photo, you can not see well the pimple!
- The below photo, you can see that the pimples “expanding”!
Why are National Hurricane 3 rubbers boosted?
Pro players need to boost the Chinese Hurricane 3 rubber. Why don’t they just buy a softer version?
Because boosting is a way to add the “tension” in the rubber. Japanese engineers have spent many years to build the high tension (Tenergy series) rubbers. But using tuners is the fastest way to “inject” the tension in every rubber (by the chemical way).
Tension will make the Chinese rubber +10% faster, and +15% spinnier!
A soft version of Chinese rubbers doesn’t have the “tension”. That’s the reason why top players prefer using harder version, and then tune to the desired hardness.
For example, Ma Long will choose a very hard National DHS Hurricane 3, with 42 degree, and then tune it to the 40.5 to 41 DHS hardness scale.
Where to buy DHS Hurricane 3?
You have 3 options to buy Chinese table tennis rubbers:
- Buy on the local retailer (mostly shop in China, Hong Kong), or international retailer (online shop Worldwide). However, buying in these online shops, the quality of rubbers vary from batch to batch. And sometimes, you can get the fake rubbers. Because some retailer buys the cheap DHS rubbers from Taobao. Some local shops in Mainland China do not have the “online shop”. So some DHS versions are only available for Chinese, or for someone who can travel to China.
- Buy on the Official shop of Double Happiness. But unfortunately, the Online is shop is under construction, and the Shipping information is not clear. (Read below).
- Go to the international marketplace (like Amazon, eBay, or Aliexpress). And choose the DHS shop page. I think this is the safest way to buy DHS rubber. As there is only one DHS shop which is verified on these platforms. Buying on these platforms will reduce the risk of buying fake products. Some platform also offers free shipping to the US, the European countries (France, England, Spain, Germany, etc). The main advantages of buying on these platforms is: You can read the feedback (with photos) from many buyers around the world.
Here are the links of the DHS Shop on these platforms. So you can go to your familiar marketplace:
Official DHS Online shop
Of course, if you want to buy a real, a legit product, you should go to the Official Double Happiness shop. However, there is so many version of DHS Online shop. Which one is real? And does they ship worldwide? I have contacted DHS Sale online about this, but until now, I got no answer.
When you search for “DHS table tennis shop”, you can get this:
- DHS Table Tennis Equipment: www.dhs-tt.com
- or this, DOUBLE HAPPINESS: en.dhs-sports.com
- or even this: https://www.facebook.com/DHSSports (but the shopping site is very slow)
Official Store for Hurricane 3 National Blue Sponge
So where is a good place to buy good quality Hurricane 3 Blue sponge? I would say, you should say only in the official store in Shanghai and Beijing. Everything below 80 Dollars is fake.
Hurricane 3 Neo blue sponge is a Chinese national team rubber. They don’t sell it outside. So, you get a lot of fake products normally. You can get the provincial blue sponge though. Else, better go for the commercial orange sponge and use a good booster.
Here is the Beijing official DHS store opposite to the China National Ping Pang Training Center.
Address: Beijing: LeeSheng Sports Mall. It is located in no. 201, Wangfujing Street, Dongcheng District, China.
They don’t have an online shop.
Buy Hurricane 3 on Aliexpress
So it depends on you to choose the shop. Many customers in China have shopped in the local shop, or they go to Aliexpress. In general, the price on Aliexpress is cheaper than on Western retailers shops. Western retailers have imported the products from China, and by adding the tax, so the price is higher.
The advantages of Aliexpress is, they can ship Worldwide. And sometimes I get the free shipping.
Free Shipping: Free Shipping to the United States via AliExpress Standard Shipping
DHS Hurricane 3 National BLUE SPONGE
Many players asked me where to buy the real, the original DHS National 3 (Blue Sponge version). This version is rare. Normally, they are reserved only for National Chinese players.
You can read more about the Ma Long forehand rubber (National Blue sponge version) here.
Why Chinese players only use “Black color” on their forehand side? Read the explication here: Difference Between Red and Black Table Tennis Rubbers?
Provincial DHS Hurricane 3
This is the DHS Original BLUE SPONGE Provincial Hurricane 3 (Size:158*152mm). The Provincial Hurricane 3 is reserved for the top Provincial players in China (professional only).
You can view the Provincial DHS Hurricane 3 (Old version) (Blue Sponge) here.
And here is the Provincial DHS Hurricane 3 (Neo version) (Blue Sponge).
- Topsheet: Only black color, tacky topsheet
- The sponge is NO .22 sponge (Blue). Blue sponge is in general harder than the Orange Sponge.
- Hardness: There 3 hardness version: 39/40/41. Only the national players can have the customized hardness scale like 40.5, 41.5 and 42. They can tune it to soften the sponge a bit.
- Color: Only Black
- Thickness: 2.15/2.2 mm
- NEO VERSION 2.1mm/2.15mm/2.2mm
How to identify the original, the real version of Provincial rubbers:
Look carefully on the front packing, there is “Three Chinese Characters in Blue” in the “Round White Sticker” (at the right-down corner in the front packing), which is the difference from the normal provincial H3 orange sponge (from the packing).
There are several sellers of the Provincial DHS Hurricane 3, you can select it from the list here.
Commercial Hurricane 3 versus Provincial Hurricane 3
The main difference between the Provincial versus the Commercial version is the topsheet, not the sponge. Because the sponge (both Orange, and Blue version) are much cheaper than the topsheet. That’s the topsheet that make the characteristics of the Chinese rubbers.
The pro’s version has a tackier topsheet. And the topsheet tackiness lasts longer. The hardness of the topsheet also will decide the first bounce speed to the ball. The pro version gives the faster ball.
Some dealer said that: “The Provincial Hurricane 3 is cut in the middle of the big sheet. While the commercial one is cut at the side of the big sheet”. However, it’s not true!
If you watch the video “How are table tennis rubber is produced”, you will understand it. There are no so-called big-sheet Chinese rubbers.
If you are new to Chinese rubbers, I recommend you buy and test the Commercial version first (much cheaper, around 15$/rubber).
You can order the DHS NEO Hurricane 3 (Commercial) 2.15mm 2.2mm on Aliexpress here (Rubber is also genuine as there is an authenticity code to check. Recommended).
Please share your own experiences of using Chinese table tennis rubbers below.