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View Full Version : Try again: Alpha String Pal


thewallylama
11-28-2006, 12:29 PM
Has anyone used this machine yet? I heard it suggested through this forum but after doing a search, I've yet to find anyone who's actually used it. It seems like it might be a nice solid little machine for a first-time stringer. Thank you!

BigGriff
11-28-2006, 01:57 PM
Only review I found besides the recommendations from people here.

http://www.stringforum.net/mforum.php?show=alpha_stringpal&model=Alpha%20String%20Pal

eunjam
11-28-2006, 03:43 PM
if you can.....get a 6 point mounting.

it's not necessary......but sooo nice.

and if you really really really can.......get fixed clamps.

again, not necessary.......but soooo nice.

Richie Rich
11-28-2006, 03:49 PM
if you can.....get a 6 point mounting.

it's not necessary......but sooo nice.

and if you really really really can.......get fixed clamps.

again, not necessary.......but soooo nice.

agreed. if you plan to keep your stringer for a few years don't skimp - buy the best you can. they pay for themselves very quickly with the money you save from not having to pay a stringer.

thewallylama
11-28-2006, 07:14 PM
Thanks for replies so far. BigGrif, I appreciate the link. As far as comments on other stringers, if you're so inclined, great, but other threads seem to cover that pretty well. I am really just looking for comments specifically about the Alpha String Pal.

meh
11-28-2006, 11:07 PM
The advantage that the Alpha has over its three direct competitors - Klippermate, SP Swing, and Gamma X-2 - is that it has a linear string gripper, as opposed to the rotational gripper used by the other three. Alpha is also known for its great build quality and support.

skraggle
11-29-2006, 12:51 AM
The advantage that the Alpha has over its three direct competitors - Klippermate, SP Swing, and Gamma X-2 - is that it has a linear string gripper, as opposed to the rotational gripper used by the other three. Alpha is also known for its great build quality and support.

Excellent point on the linear gripper, as this makes stringing way faster and easier for me..

thewallylama
12-13-2006, 06:22 AM
Thought I'd try again: no one on this forum has tried this machine? It seems like good way to dip my toe in the water without a big commitment but still having Alpha's reputation.

Redflea
12-13-2006, 09:39 AM
You should also call Mark at alphatennis...talk to him about any concerns you have, and confirm what options you have if you order one and have any issues w/the machine. The Alpha staff are great, and will be very helpful if you ask.

Court_Jester
12-19-2006, 06:55 PM
Thought I'd try again: no one on this forum has tried this machine? It seems like good way to dip my toe in the water without a big commitment but still having Alpha's reputation.
I used to own one but after a week of stringing, I decided it wasn't the one for me. The absence of a clutch made stringing quite a chore. Average string job took me 1 hr 45 min to finish. But my biggest beef was that my racquets ended up 1/8" shorter. It may not be much but I'm pretty anal about my racquets. Such a shame 'coz it was a solid machine. Maybe I just got a bad apple from the bunch but I decided to exchange it for a Revo 4000 instead. No regrets.

CleverLob
12-19-2006, 07:13 PM
I just got one, my first stringing machine ever. I really really like it, I can string about as fast (or faster?) than on an electric stringer. What I like about it is the sliding gripper, it makes it really fast to just get the string in and out. Even though I havn't tried other stringers, I would say this is really one of the best you can get for a very low ammount of money. I don't see myself getting anything else for basically ever.

ccelis
12-19-2006, 07:38 PM
I just got one, my first stringing machine ever. I really really like it, I can string about as fast (or faster?) than on an electric stringer. What I like about it is the sliding gripper, it makes it really fast to just get the string in and out. Even though I havn't tried other stringers, I would say this is really one of the best you can get for a very low ammount of money. I don't see myself getting anything else for basically ever.

Is it true that it doesn't have a clutch? Does it come with any additional spacers or adaptors?

Thanks

Redflea
12-19-2006, 08:43 PM
Is it true that it doesn't have a clutch? Does it come with any additional spacers or adaptors?

Thanks

I'd expect Court Jester knows of what he speaks...but if you want more assurance, you can just call Alpha and ask Mark about it. :)

Court_Jester
12-19-2006, 09:04 PM
I'd expect Court Jester knows of what he speaks...but if you want more assurance, you can just call Alpha and ask Mark about it. :)
Thanks for the vote of confidence, Redflea but I need to clarify something about my original reply.

ccelis,
I dug up an email from New Tech Tennis when I inquired about the clutch mechanism of String Pal last summer. They said that it has a clutch spring inside but it doesn't have a ratchet clicker. IMO, without this ratchet mechanism, it's more laborious re-positioning the bar and tensioning the string.

Redflea
12-19-2006, 09:08 PM
Thanks for the vote of confidence, Redflea but I need to clarify something about my original reply.

ccelis,
I dug up an email from New Tech Tennis when I inquired about the clutch mechanism of String Pal last summer. They said that it has a clutch spring inside but it doesn't have a ratchet clicker. IMO, without this ratchet mechanism, it's more laborious re-positioning the bar and tensioning the string.

Yeah, like I said, that Court Jester dude is a total space cadet... ;)

Court_Jester
12-19-2006, 09:16 PM
Yeah, like I said, that Court Jester dude is a total space cadet... ;)

LOL! Don't I know it! :D

ccelis
12-20-2006, 06:36 AM
Thanks for the vote of confidence, Redflea but I need to clarify something about my original reply.

ccelis,
I dug up an email from New Tech Tennis when I inquired about the clutch mechanism of String Pal last summer. They said that it has a clutch spring inside but it doesn't have a ratchet clicker. IMO, without this ratchet mechanism, it's more laborious re-positioning the bar and tensioning the string.

Thanks for the clarification, because I had email Alpha before and they told me that it did have a clutch so I was confused.

Thanks

gotwheels
12-20-2006, 12:43 PM
I have experience with both of the Alpha dropweight clutches. The String Pal clutch is a silent type (non-ratchet) and requires both hands during the tension adjustment. This is similar to the Alpha Pioneer III sytem. The ratcheting clutch is what is on the Alpha Pioneer DC Plus and uses one hand for tension adjustment, but both hands for tension release. No big deal or significant either way - both work great. The best thing is that there is a clutch that is easy to use, some of the clutches on other competitive machines are not as comfortable to use.

The Alpha String Pal gets little talk, but is the best bargain entry level string on the market in features and price ($119 + like $17 shipping). It will readily compete with and or exceed the KlipperUSA, Gamma, and Silent Partner entry level machines. Give Mark at Alpha/Newtech a call - You can't loose - nice stringer with a 30 day return!

ccelis
12-20-2006, 02:29 PM
I have experience with both of the Alpha dropweight clutches. The String Pal clutch is a silent type (non-ratchet) and requires both hands during the tension adjustment. This is similar to the Alpha Pioneer III sytem. The ratcheting clutch is what is on the Alpha Pioneer DC Plus and uses one hand for tension adjustment, but both hands for tension release. No big deal or significant either way - both work great. The best thing is that there is a clutch that is easy to use, some of the clutches on other competitive machines are not as comfortable to use.

The Alpha String Pal gets little talk, but is the best bargain entry level string on the market in features and price ($119 + like $17 shipping). It will readily compete with and or exceed the KlipperUSA, Gamma, and Silent Partner entry level machines. Give Mark at Alpha/Newtech a call - You can't loose - nice stringer with a 30 day return!

So then do you still have the String Pal? How is the mounting, does it prevent deformation well?

D-man
02-01-2007, 07:46 PM
Where can you buy the alpha string pal? Thanks for any help.

gotwheels
02-01-2007, 08:23 PM
Alpha stringing products are available through Alpha Tennis or New Tech Tennis, their retail arm. Speak with Greg or Mark.

D-man
02-02-2007, 09:24 AM
Thank you, I found the only place to buy them here:
http://www.newtechtennis.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=3_12&products_id=33

staedtler
02-02-2007, 09:28 AM
Im tempted as to which one I should get. String Pal or the Gamma X-2. I think I need to do more research. I would go for a really nice machine, but I'm basically stringing for myself and a few friends at most.

WhiteSox05CA
02-02-2007, 03:03 PM
Im tempted as to which one I should get. String Pal or the Gamma X-2. I think I need to do more research. I would go for a really nice machine, but I'm basically stringing for myself and a few friends at most.

I'm in the same situation as you. I was originally considering the SP Swing and the Gamma X-2, but now I've learned more about the String Pal. It sounds great, I'll probably learn on this machine.

Does it come with string packages? I hear the instructions are pretty bad that are given on all stringing machines. Is there any other place I could learn?

thewallylama
02-02-2007, 04:49 PM
Nice to see this thread that I started a while back come to life!

Does it come with string packages? I hear the instructions are pretty bad that are given on all stringing machines. Is there any other place I could learn?
No, the String Pal doesn't come with string packages, but hey, it's only $120. now at newtechtennis, so you have money left over to buy some! I had emailed Mark at Alpha about the String Pal and he was really helpful. He sent me a copy of the manual/instructions. The manual seems better to me than what some people have been saying about it--I wonder if Alpha improved it since those comments. It has some very good, clear photos. However, I don't think that it has enough detail for someone who hasn't strung before--it could have more steps and more details. You would probably want to check some online sites that have more information.
It looks like a very sold, simple, quality stringer for a great price. No frills--but good--kind of zen!
I'm planning on getting one myself soon. I've been taking my time finding out more about stringing and stringers and it seems like a great little entry level stringer and Alpha has that great reputation.

dr_punk
03-27-2007, 05:23 PM
how long (on average) would it take to string a racquet on an alpha pal? given the stringer is adept etc...
also, i heard somewhere about a 6 point mount and fixed clamps... is that something you can buy as an accessory?

Court_Jester
03-27-2007, 06:46 PM
how long (on average) would it take to string a racquet on an alpha pal? given the stringer is adept etc...
No different when using, say, SP Swing or Gamma X-2. Probably 2 to 2.5 hours when you're first starting to string but can go down to less than an hour with experience.

also, i heard somewhere about a 6 point mount and fixed clamps... is that something you can buy as an accessory?
Nope, you can't. Sub-$200 stringers are not designed to be upgraded with fixed clamps and 6-point mounts.

dr_punk
03-27-2007, 06:52 PM
crap... an hour? that sucks

ryohazuki222
03-27-2007, 07:01 PM
even if you had a top of the line machine, i doubt you'd start cranking out string jobs in under an hour...

its not that bad.

Court_Jester
03-27-2007, 07:04 PM
crap... an hour? that sucks
It's not all about the speed. It's all about consistency.

Redflea
03-27-2007, 07:09 PM
how long (on average) would it take to string a racquet on an alpha pal? given the stringer is adept etc...
also, i heard somewhere about a 6 point mount and fixed clamps... is that something you can buy as an accessory?

My first time it took me well over 2 hours. :) There's the whole "newness" of it to get over, knots to learn, etc., and that can take some time. The basics of stringing are incredibly simple, however. So leave yourself a nice open bit of time, and maybe start in the early evening, so that folks are online here in case you need to post a quick "WHAT NOW!?!?" message. :D I would not start at 10:00 at night...if you need help 2 hours later we'll all be asleep!! ;)

dr_punk
03-27-2007, 08:08 PM
you guys make it an appealing concept haha

Redflea
03-27-2007, 08:18 PM
even if you had a top of the line machine, i doubt you'd start cranking out string jobs in under an hour...

its not that bad.

I can't speak for the String Pal, as I haven't used flying clamps, but I'm down to about 40 minutes stringing gut on a familiar racquet on my Pioneer DC Plus dropweight. That's not hurrying, having the TV on while I'm doing it, talking w/the family, etc.

Your ultimate results will depend on how often you string, type of string, general manual dexterity, etc.,

staedtler
03-27-2007, 09:38 PM
Are polys any easier to string with a linear gripper than a rotational gripper? Im leaning towards teh string pal as of now.

meh
03-27-2007, 10:55 PM
Linear grippers are gentler on gut and poly strings. They are also more straightforward to use.

dr_punk
03-28-2007, 09:58 PM
lets say I do buy this machine... what else should I buy for it?

Redflea
03-28-2007, 10:09 PM
You might want to put it on a rack to string on, as opposed to putting it on a table...personal choice.

I don't know what tools the String Pal comes with...you'll need something to cut strings (nail clipper works fine, or small pair of pliers. You may want an awl, which can be helpful getting strings through blocked holes. That's about it...all I use is my stringer, something to cut the strings, and occassionaly an awl.

You'll also need some string and a racquet. ;)

meh
03-28-2007, 10:37 PM
Redflea listed the basics. You'll also want a starting clamp, string bed cutter, needle-nose and bent-nose pliers, and perhaps a setting awl. It's nice to have both a curved and straight awl.

Out of those, the starting clamp and needle-nose pliers are the most important. The starting clamp isn't necessary, but they're invaluable in a number of situations, and personally, I use them on every stringjob that I do. You need the pliers to tie knots.

little_e
03-29-2007, 06:02 AM
The string pal comes with the standard Alpha tool kit (needle nose pliars, wire cutters, awl, string mover, 2~flying clamps, & a set of allen wrenches) and it works great,. My wife bought me one for Christmas and I have done about 20 string jobs on it so far. The stringer works great there will be a little trial & error trying to figure out how to string, make sure the towers don't slip , etc... but other than it is fun. I am down to about 40 min. on full poly and one hour on everything else (no gut yet not willing to mess up 35dol. of string do to my mistake & if I like it then I go broke).

Redflea
03-29-2007, 08:30 AM
The string pal comes with the standard Alpha tool kit (needle nose pliars, wire cutters, awl, string mover, 2~flying clamps, & a set of allen wrenches) and it works great,. My wife bought me one for Christmas and I have done about 20 string jobs on it so far. The stringer works great there will be a little trial & error trying to figure out how to string, make sure the towers don't slip , etc... but other than it is fun. I am down to about 40 min. on full poly and one hour on everything else (no gut yet not willing to mess up 35dol. of string do to my mistake & if I like it then I go broke).

That's great...thanks for posting that little_e. I think that's all you need, dr_punk. I have never used or felt like I needed a starting clamp, so I wouldn't put it on anyones "need" list to string. You could consider adding it, but not necessary to get started stringing.

dr_punk
03-29-2007, 07:55 PM
cool... sounds good now