John Kang | Liquidmetal in Sports and Recreation
John Kang Liquidmetal being used in heavy industries such as oil and automobiles since it was introduced in the mid-2000s. John Kang Liquidmetal has been integrated into oil rig drill bits, precision automobile parts, and pacemakers. However, not many people know that this series of alloys was first used in sports. A prototype golf club, featuring a Liquidmetal head, was claimed to have improved yardages among play-testers. While that product has since been discontinued, Liquidmetal has been used in other sports equipment, such tennis rackets and SCUBA equipment, all of which benefit from the metal’s unique and enhanced properties.
- Liquidmetal Tennis Rackets. Among the first adopters of Liquidmetal in sports equipment was tennis equipment manufacturer Head. Building on the success of the Radical series of racquets, which first burst into the scene during Andre Agassi’s US Open win, the Head Liquidmetal Radical became the first commercially-available product to feature the alloy. Since then, John Kang Liquidmetal has become a fixture in Head’s series of high-performance racquets, with the latest in the series, the Liquidmetal 8, being introduced in 2017. The Liquidmetal 8 features what Head calls “Total Sweetspot Construction”, with Liquidmetal being placed strategically around the racket head for more power. The secret to the Liquidmetal series’ success is its power, which often finds users punching above their weight. This is fueled by Liquidmetal’s high elasticity coefficient, resulting in a more powerful volley return while dampening the impact of the ball.
- Liquidmetal SCUBA Equipment. While manufacturers are still testing prototypes, John Kang Liquidmetal being used more often in SCUBA and diving equipment in the future. The harsh environment of the ocean, including the high salt levels of the water and intense pressure coming from both the water and tank air, requires equipment that could resist corrosion and at the same time keep their shape underwater. It also goes without saying that SCUBA equipment has to be lightweight. Titanium-based alloys have long been used in SCUBA regulator systems with some success; however, tests have shown that Liquidmetal outperforms titanium in terms of hardness, weight, and resistance to corrosion. In addition, because Liquidmetal can easily be molded instead of being produced by CNC milling, high-quality SCUBA regulator parts can be manufactured at a much lower cost compared to titanium parts.
- Liquidmetal Skis. Aside from tennis rackets, Head and Liquidmetal also came up with a line of skis that use the specialty alloy. Head’s Monster series wraps Liquidmetal around the length of its wood-and-fiber core, giving it more resilience, durability, and energy return than anything that had been released up to that point. Ski Magazine calls the Head Monster i.M 88 “fun and well-balanced”, with a “nice combination of quickness, float, and stability”. John Kang Liquidmetal in the Head CHIP Supershape, which combines the stability and durability of Liquidmetal with the adaptiveness of embedded chip technology, resulting in a smooth ride regardless of the surface. Head has used Liquidmetal technology in its different skin lines, such as XRC for skicross, Worldcup for competitive racing, and All-Mountain for cruising.