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View Full Version : Tension loss...how much before poly goes "dead"?


amx13
12-19-2009, 08:42 AM
Hi guys. I just wonder how much tension loss % would be enough to cut down a poly hybrid before it goes dead. Here´s the thing.

I´ve just started to play with a poly hybrid (alu rough on mains and wilson super spin hex on crosses), but I have no idea how a "dead" poly is supposed to feel. I strung my K88 at 53/55 lbs tension, and the gamma string meter I have gave me a 46 reading average, so I wonder how low can it get, before it can start giving me elbow problems or something. Any ideas?

ronalditop
12-19-2009, 08:56 AM
I still dont understand what people say of polys going dead in just a few hours of play. I have played with several polys (mostly first generation) and with all of them I have experience something similar, they feel stiff for the first hour or so, and after that they become a little softer and more powerful, and then stay pretty much the same until they break.

amx13
12-19-2009, 09:11 AM
Thats exactly my point ronalditop. I have my other K88 strung with babolat revenge/wison spin hex, Ive played with it about 2 weeks, but I didnt get the tension measured with the gamma stringmeter when I strung it.

That frame feels about the same right now, and its about to snap, but I wonder if I should have kept track of the tension loss in order to avoid the string becoming "dead".

I still have a hard time understanding how can you know when a poly goes dead...should it feel stiffer?, too powerful?, painful to the elbow and wrist?

TennezSport
12-19-2009, 10:01 AM
OK, most people do not understand dead poly string, so let me give a little history first. Poly string was created for Pro players only to be durable on clay court surfaces. Nat gut was the string most used by Pro players back then and the clay often caused early breakage. I have actually studied with the person who is arguably the father of poly string and he told me that it was designed to be durable for Pro players and have a life of 2-6hrs of play, since Pro players string nearly every day.

OK, so what is going dead in a poly??? As you know poly string is a very stiff string with low elongation properties. What makes a string play great is it's ability to pocket the ball and then snap back to it's original position quickly. As the ball is struck, the string will stretch and snap back but each time a little of the snap back property is lost; this is called resilency. So as a string is played and ages it loses resiliency and once lost, goes dead. In some string going dead means tension is lost and the string will feel boardy (poly string). This can happen long before it breaks, especially if you hit the ball very flat. In other string going dead means tension loss and the string becomes a rocket launcher (synth gut(SG); multis). There are a whole family of newer co-poly strings coming out for rec players that will be much better in playability, feel and tension control; Tecnifibre, WeissCannon, Luxilon and others have been working hard on the problem

The only way to get the true feel of a poly going dead is to play with a whole set in a racquet and you will quickly see and feel it. This also depends on how tight you string poly (tighter = shorter life), how hard you hit, type of play (spinny<> flat), how stiff a racquet and hours of play (always measure in hours of play). By using a multi setup you are counteracting the negative effects of both the poly and the SG/multi; as the poly gets stiffer the multi is getting softer. You are still losing tension but the difference approx. equals out. This is why hybriding is the best course for the average rec player, if you are not a chronic string breaker. Hope this helps.

Cheers, TennezSport :cool:

VGP
12-19-2009, 10:10 AM
For most recreation players, string goes dead when you don't like it's playability anymore or when it breaks - regardless of string type.

ronalditop
12-19-2009, 10:31 AM
...
The only way to get the true feel of a poly going dead is to play with a whole set in a racquet and you will quickly see and feel it. This also depends on how tight you string poly (tighter = shorter life), how hard you hit, type of play (spinny<> flat), how stiff a racquet and hours of play (always measure in hours of play). By using a multi setup you are counteracting the negative effects of both the poly and the SG/multi; as the poly gets stiffer the multi is getting softer. You are still losing tension but the difference approx. equals out. This is why hybriding is the best course for the average rec player, if you are not a chronic string breaker. Hope this helps.

Cheers, TennezSport :cool:

Well maybe thats the reason why I cant tell much difference in playability as the string gets old, since I use to string my racquets fairly low.

Love50
12-19-2009, 11:06 AM
I'm fairly sensitive to poly dying, even when strung low. It is more noticeable on strokes with minimal backswing, such as volleys.

What happens from my perspective is that the ball dies on the string, like a mishit, even if you did hit in the center of the strings. In some spots, the stringbed no longer has sufficient resiliency at low speeds to even bounce the ball of it. To some extent, you can compensate by forcing the ball onto the stringbed with a "swing", but that's just going to help you develop some bad volley habits...

If you mostly hit groundies from the baseline, you might not notice it as much. You should still be able to tell fresh poly from one that's seen some use but perhaps you consider the difference to be a "break-in" period... Some folks do prefer the dead poly feel but if you play a lot, long term it's probably not good for your arm. In that case, just pick a fixed amount of play time and cut it after that.

The string meter reading probably won't help you much. When I used to play with a full set of Cyber Flash, I kept track of the stringbed stiffness for every string job. The typical behavior is that stringbed stiffness has a relatively rapid drop and stabilizes at some number, and then the drop is very gradual at that point (you might not notice it move for a while). I usually considered the string to be dead before the stringbed stiffness stabilized, so if you like the dead poly feel, you'll be playing when the string meter reading doesn't change much...

Dreamcastin
12-19-2009, 11:56 AM
OK, most people do not understand dead poly string, so let me give a little history first. Poly string was created for Pro players only to be durable on clay court surfaces. Nat gut was the string most used by Pro players back then and the clay often caused early breakage. I have actually studied with the person who is arguably the father of poly string and he told me that it was designed to be durable for Pro players and have a life of 2-6hrs of play, since Pro players string nearly every day.

OK, so what is going dead in a poly??? As you know poly string is a very stiff string with low elongation properties. What makes a string play great is it's ability to pocket the ball and then snap back to it's original position quickly. As the ball is struck, the string will stretch and snap back but each time a little of the snap back property is lost; this is called resilency. So as a string is played and ages it loses resiliency and once lost, goes dead. In some string going dead means tension is lost and the string will feel boardy (poly string). This can happen long before it breaks, especially if you hit the ball very flat. In other string going dead means tension loss and the string becomes a rocket launcher (synth gut(SG); multis). There are a whole family of newer co-poly strings coming out for rec players that will be much better in playability, feel and tension control; Tecnifibre, WeissCannon, Luxilon and others have been working hard on the problem

The only way to get the true feel of a poly going dead is to play with a whole set in a racquet and you will quickly see and feel it. This also depends on how tight you string poly (tighter = shorter life), how hard you hit, type of play (spinny<> flat), how stiff a racquet and hours of play (always measure in hours of play). By using a multi setup you are counteracting the negative effects of both the poly and the SG/multi; as the poly gets stiffer the multi is getting softer. You are still losing tension but the difference approx. equals out. This is why hybriding is the best course for the average rec player, if you are not a chronic string breaker. Hope this helps.

Cheers, TennezSport :cool:

very good post, i play with poly mains/ multi crosses, and takes a very long time for me to feel it needs restrung. on the other hand when i tried to play full poly, it felt like crap in about the 4-6 hour window most people will tell you with a poly. i get hours and hours over a few month span with my hybrid though.

JavierLW
12-19-2009, 12:04 PM
..........

ClubHoUno
12-19-2009, 09:49 PM
OK, most people do not understand dead poly string, so let me give a little history first. Poly string was created for Pro players only to be durable on clay court surfaces. Nat gut was the string most used by Pro players back then and the clay often caused early breakage. I have actually studied with the person who is arguably the father of poly string and he told me that it was designed to be durable for Pro players and have a life of 2-6hrs of play, since Pro players string nearly every day.

OK, so what is going dead in a poly??? As you know poly string is a very stiff string with low elongation properties. What makes a string play great is it's ability to pocket the ball and then snap back to it's original position quickly. As the ball is struck, the string will stretch and snap back but each time a little of the snap back property is lost; this is called resilency. So as a string is played and ages it loses resiliency and once lost, goes dead. In some string going dead means tension is lost and the string will feel boardy (poly string). This can happen long before it breaks, especially if you hit the ball very flat. In other string going dead means tension loss and the string becomes a rocket launcher (synth gut(SG); multis). There are a whole family of newer co-poly strings coming out for rec players that will be much better in playability, feel and tension control; Tecnifibre, WeissCannon, Luxilon and others have been working hard on the problem

The only way to get the true feel of a poly going dead is to play with a whole set in a racquet and you will quickly see and feel it. This also depends on how tight you string poly (tighter = shorter life), how hard you hit, type of play (spinny<> flat), how stiff a racquet and hours of play (always measure in hours of play). By using a multi setup you are counteracting the negative effects of both the poly and the SG/multi; as the poly gets stiffer the multi is getting softer. You are still losing tension but the difference approx. equals out. This is why hybriding is the best course for the average rec player, if you are not a chronic string breaker. Hope this helps.

Cheers, TennezSport :cool:

^^^^^^^^ I agree with this entire post ^^^^^^^^

I just started using a hybrid of Signum Pro Tornado 1.17 mains and Babolat Xcel Power 16 crosses and when I earlier used this hybrid, I cut the strings out after 6 hours, but now with the use of stringsavers and because I gave this hybrid a chance after 6 hours of use to my surprise, it plays well even after 10+ hours, until I normally break it after 12+ hours of play.

Richie Rich
12-20-2009, 03:21 AM
TennezSport - excellent post.

my rule of thumb has been 20 hours max out of a set of poly. from my experience all the polys i have tried have lost resiliency by then. it's pretty gradual so if you might not notice.

so if the string has lost resiliency, where is all the shock of the ball hitting the strings going? the racquet and your arm. so if you are one of those people that keep poly in for a year until it breaks do yourself a favor and string more often.