Earlier this month we had the opportunity to interact with some of the top professionals in the world of racquet stringing and customization. One particular session we found facinating was facilitated by Mr. John Elliot who flew in from France to share some of his observations and thoughts on world of poly-based strings. During his presentation we noted the following observations he has made through his years of working with polyester strings.
– Polyester strings are sensitive to the cold.
– Basic polys offer less than 2 hours of string life.
– Luxilon ALU strings are a very high quality offering. Similar to formula one performance racing tires in that they perform well for a short period of time and then need to be replaced. (Optimal performance time is very limited, usually less than a match)
– Tension determines the length of the ball. 2 pounds of tension equates to 1 yard of ball length. Increase 2 pounds to reduce length by one yard, decrease 2 pounds to increase one yard.
– Stringmeter tool is more accurate than most people give credit for. The reason the readings vary from string to string is due to either the stringing machine or the stringer. A number of variables can lead to inconsistency. Ideally the tension of all main (except outer most mains) strings should measure the same with this tool.
– The best playing racquet set-up for recreational and league players is a hybrid with a poly-based main and synthetic gut cross string (not a multi).
– Racquet tuning is not the same as racquet stringing. Racquet tuning is working toward an end result…the desired stringbed stiffness.
– To tune racquet, find desired stringbed stiffness. Ask customer to let you know when racquet is performing optimally. Using stringmeter, measure string tension. Increase +4 pounds for polys and +10 pounds for nylon at next stringing. Also use Dynamic Tension readings to confirm.
– Stringing is most consistent and best when stringer uses a FLUID and REPEATABLE motion.
– With friction tension in crosses ends up measuring approx. 1/3 less in crosses than mains when strung at same reference tension.
Obviously Mr. Elliot provides much food for thought and future discussion. We will likely find some of these very themes emerging as future individual blog entries. As always we thank you for visiting our blog and invite you to participate by leaving your comments and questions below.