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View Full Version : Help With Pacific Blue Spiral Please


WilsonPlayer101
07-06-2011, 09:12 PM
Here is the story. I had some Pacific Blue Spiral in the drawer for a month or so now. I decide to have it strung up. I have read so much about the Blue Spiral so I just had to try it. I bring it to a local pro shop, one with a great reputation for great service and stringing. Got it strung up over the weekend but played today with it today. The strings did not have that great soft feel that I read people rave about. Not the soft feel, not the spin or control. Felt pretty stiff. My Head racquet tension range is 52-62. So I had them string it up two LBS above mid point, therefore it was strung at 59. I was expecting a drop in tension so I thought I'd raise it a couple.

I have used many guts in the past. VS which was the best so far, Becker which was so-so, I've had better, and cheapo Global which I really don't like. My question is does Blue Spiral have to be broken in for a few sets before it starts acting like the great gut that people describe it being? I believe the reviews when people say that this gut is just as soft as VS and has great control and spin. I think something is amiss here. Either these need to be broken in or maybe the stringer pre-stretched it and maybe that makes it stiff.

I read thru my research that some guts should be pre-stretched and some should not. I could not find specifically if Blue Spiral should be pre-stretched. If it should not be then there is a chance that the stringer did so. Or maybe this string is supposed to be broken in before the great properties of this string should be felt. I don't know, that's why I am asking you guys here about this.

If these are the way these strings will be even after hours of break in then what a waste of money, I'd have done as good with a multi or a synthetic gut. Like I say I think these are great strings, I mean people say they are, so either they were pre-stretched when they should not have or these will break in. I just want your thoughts on how Blue Spiral should be treated when installed.

Oh, one last thing, it does not have that "buttery" feel some say it has. Heck if this is the way it's gonna be I should have purchased Gaucho Blue Spiral, could not be much difference except the break risk of Gaucho.


Thanks,


James

Buddy
07-06-2011, 10:17 PM
Don't look to prestretching as the issue. Prestretching is primarily for getting rid of the initial coil memory which assists in stringing nat gut. I think most would agree that the prestretch has no impact on technical functionality. As to Blue Spiral, I'll look to track some down and see for myself.

WilsonPlayer101
07-06-2011, 11:11 PM
Buddy, thanks for the reply. TW does not sell it any longer. I went to the Pacific string page at TW to order some but they were gone so I called the TW phone number and asked about that and I was told that Pacific no longer makes it. I did find it at another online retailer so I bought it there. I actually wanted to buy it from TW because I've had good experiences with TW and I appreciate their TT forum but I was forced to buy from the other tennis retailer.

Strung at 59, with an expectation for these to drop a couple of pounds in tension leads me to think that it can't be how tight it was strung because 59 is not that high. You mention you don't think it could be the pre-stretch either. So I wonder what's happening here? Maybe needs to break in. I played about an hour today in the hot California sun. Won't play for another few days or so, so I won't break them in anymore until then.

If you get some let us know how you like them.

Wonder if this new Orange Spiral they have is any better?


Thanks

WilsonPlayer101
07-07-2011, 12:11 PM
Anyone with any thoughts on this please reply. I'm really curious why this might be happening. Thanks.

Cruzer
07-07-2011, 06:01 PM
I had basically the same experience with the Pacific Blue Spiral gut. I have used other Pacific guts and found them to be very good gut strings however I was not impressed with the Blue Spiral. It has the stiffest feel of any gut I have used. It continued to feel relatively stiff right up to the time it broke. I strung it at a moderate 55-56 pounds and I don't pre-stretch gut before I string it. I am not saying it is a bad string but it is not what you expect for a gut string with a price in excess of $30.00 a set. I won't miss it and will stick with reliable VS gut.

WilsonPlayer101
07-07-2011, 09:31 PM
Cruzer thanks for sharing your experiences with this string. I read so many reviews at how soft it is and how buttery feeling it is but as you know your and my experiences with this string are not that. You and I strung our Blue Spiral at a reasonable tension too. I'll keep on using it, it's not the worse string but if it's like this then it's not too impressive for me. I have another set but am not going to try to sell it, I'll just keep it for a hybrid or for a backup racquet.

I might try the VS/RPM hybrid that Babs has now. The black one. VS is great stuff so maybe YS in the mains for the gut feel and the RPM to cut the cost and also maybe get more spin on the serves.

Thanks Cruzer ...


James

jim e
07-08-2011, 07:22 AM
With same racquet, same gauge (16) , and same tension, Blue Spiral feels softer than VS not only for me, but for others I string for as well.
If you change one variable, then you can expect different results.

WilsonPlayer101
07-08-2011, 07:45 AM
jim e, what racquet and tension?

Mine is at tension 59 as noted above and the racquet is a Head YouTek Prestige MP. 16 gauge. Thanks.

jim e
07-08-2011, 09:26 AM
jim e, what racquet and tension?

Mine is at tension 59 as noted above and the racquet is a Head YouTek Prestige MP. 16 gauge. Thanks.

The 2 racquet types I use are :
Head Radical OS strung with VS 64 lbs. and Blue Spiral 64 lbs. both 16g.
Head Twin tube Radical MP (Zebra), with VS 61 lbs. and Blue Spiral 61 lbs. both 16g.

I have a few clients that have used both VS and Blue spiral, and they had same conclusions as well.

A change of stringer, or machine can cause you a different result, as well as different racquet and tension and gauge.

Keifers
07-08-2011, 09:54 AM
..........

WilsonPlayer101
07-08-2011, 09:57 AM
I wonder why my Blue Spiral, as well as Cruzer's Blue Spiral does not seem soft but pretty stiff. You are not the only one to post that Blue Spiral is a soft feeling string. Is it possible that Cruzer and I got a defective set of strings? That seems unlikely but I can't think of why. I mean I strung less pounds than you and it seems stiff.

Did you require any break in period?

Did you pre-stretch? I don't think pre-stretch could be an issue because Cruzer did not do any pre-stretching but just strung it without.

Thanks jim.

Keifers
07-08-2011, 10:42 AM
..........

jim e
07-08-2011, 10:45 AM
I wonder why my Blue Spiral, as well as Cruzer's Blue Spiral does not seem soft but pretty stiff. You are not the only one to post that Blue Spiral is a soft feeling string. Is it possible that Cruzer and I got a defective set of strings? That seems unlikely but I can't think of why. I mean I strung less pounds than you and it seems stiff.

Did you require any break in period?

Did you pre-stretch? I don't think pre-stretch could be an issue because Cruzer did not do any pre-stretching but just strung it without.

Thanks jim.

I string this myself, and am very particular on how I string.
I always just lightly prestretch by hand only the nat. gut and I do mean a light prestretch just to eliminate some of the coil memory, and not to change any characteristics of the string.Each time the racquets were strung as 2 piece, no ATW or other pattern. When I string 2 of my racquets back to back they are the same. When I sttring VS and Blue Spiral there is no doubt thet the Blue Spiral is softer. 2 of my clients also commented the same way that hits primarily with VS and used the Blue Spiral, so its not just the way I feel.
Even though you may have brought your racquets to the same shop , that does not mean that you got the same stringer, and different stringers can give a different result, as well as different machine to string it as well.
I have no other answer for you, as I seriously doubt that the string you received would be any different.

WilsonPlayer101
07-08-2011, 12:45 PM
jim e, thanks for the info.

I don't string myself. I used to when a friend of mine had a professional manual stringing machine but he moved away so the past 16 or so years I've been bring it to get strung at pro shops. I am not familiar with the ATW or other patterns you speak of. So I suppose the pattern one strings the racquet in can have an effect on the feel of the string? So it's possible that the pattern the stringer used made it kind of stiff?

I will bring it to another shop to get strung. The one I brought it to is a big shop and they do a great job but maybe the stringers ways caused it to be stiff. The other small shop is a one man outfit and I'll have more talk time with him to ask him about stringing these up. I'll use these for about a month or so before I cut them out. They cost too much money to just cut out now. They are playable just not as I expected.


Thanks

jim e
07-08-2011, 02:08 PM
Wilson Player:
One thing about gut is its very resilient, and as such it will be very playable until it breaks, but like any other string it will loose tension over time,they all do, but since it is so resilient it will continue to be playable, so my guess is that you will like it more after you play with it for a while. Myself and most of my clients, the nat. gut ones that is, usually prefers nat. gut strung at a relatively high tension, as gut is very playable as such, and the quality ones like pacific and VS can be strung very high.
Anyways, keep hitting, and I'm willing to bet that in a short amount of time you will like those strings! Good luck. Jim

WilsonPlayer101
07-08-2011, 11:20 PM
jim, I play about twice a week so I'm hoping that even tho I don't play as often as some members here do, that over time it will get more flexible. I've had VS in the past but stopped because one time the set I had didn't feel right, I thought it was a bum set and thought I'll try other brands rather than spend that much and chance it again. I'm sure that most of the VS are consistently good but that one just made me want to try other brands. I'll tell you that with VS I remember such power, control and even spin. I could literally feel the ball being gripped by the strings for a nano-second or so. Maybe I should byte the bullet and pay for VS again.

I still have a second set of Blue Spiral so if any of you, jim e or others can give me specific instructions to give to the stringer to string my Blue Spiral in a way that it's soft, buttery and resilient I'd appreciate it. Thank You.

fortun8son
07-08-2011, 11:48 PM
When you go to the new shop, tell the stringer all of this.
If he seems confused or impatient, find another stringer.

WilsonPlayer101
07-10-2011, 07:48 AM
fortun8son, I agree. True, if the stringer is confused then the stringer is not very experienced or knowledgeable so that could be a factor in how the string is strung up and how it actually plays and feels. Thanks.

parasailing
07-10-2011, 11:33 AM
Wilson - Unless you plan on buying out the rest of this discontinued gut, I would recommend you find a replacement. I was initially afraid that the BT7 VS was way stiffer and closer to Pacific Tough Gut and had to demo it to see. Fortunately, it was only slightly stiffer than the non BT7 version so I no longer need to hoard the old string.

I would suggest trying other brands and see what would work for you. I didn't get a chance to try this Blue Spiral out before they discontinued it and don't want to know if it turns out great, that I can't get anymore of it going forward.

WilsonPlayer101
07-10-2011, 11:43 AM
parasailing, you are right, I should find one that I like a lot because Blue Spiral will be running out fast. Anyway, so far my experience with Blue Spiral has not been as good as I thought it would be. I had good experiences with VS gut in the past except one set that did not feel right, therefore I went on to try other guts and have not revisited VS again. I will go back and try some VS again.

Sorry, I don't know what BT7 and non BT7 gut is. Please explain what that is.


Thanks much

parasailing
07-10-2011, 02:53 PM
parasailing, you are right, I should find one that I like a lot because Blue Spiral will be running out fast. Anyway, so far my experience with Blue Spiral has not been as good as I thought it would be. I had good experiences with VS gut in the past except one set that did not feel right, therefore I went on to try other guts and have not revisited VS again. I will go back and try some VS again.

Sorry, I don't know what BT7 and non BT7 gut is. Please explain what that is.


Thanks much

Babolat recently released a new version of gut based on BT7 technology. You will see it labeled on the package and if you don't it's the regular one that once sold out will no longer be available. There is a entire thread discussing this you can search for more info.

The new BT7 is a tad stiffer but I don't seem to have issues with it luckily thus saving me from having to find another string. VS is probably the softest string out on the market that is available in many places and you should try a set of the BT7 to see if you can live with it.

I don't know why RSI gives Pacific Tough Gut a softer rating since it plays ways stiffer than VS.

WilsonPlayer101
07-11-2011, 09:11 PM
Thanks for the info on what BT7 is. I'm a bit behind on that stuff.

I used my racquet again today. Played for about an hour and a half. It is breaking in a little more but it still does not play like a good gut does. I didn't realize that the way one strings it effects the playability so much but from some of the post here it shows that it does.

WilsonPlayer101
07-11-2011, 10:14 PM
You know what guys now I suspect whoever strung this racquet strung it way too tight. Maybe I'm wrong but I suspect it was not strung at 59 as I asked for it to be but much more. Why do I suspect that?

To lead you to where I'm going I have to ask you some questions.

How can I tell if the tension is in the ballpark of what I asked for, 59 LBS? I have no special gauge that might be used to measure the tension of a string job but I tell you this that when I play a set the strings hardly move at all. I don't need that String Thing that Phillipouses (spell?) is advertising on the Tennis Channel to make the strings stay nice and even because they aren't moving. If they are it's hardly. If I put my fingers across the mains and try to move them with my finger tips guess what I have to muscle the strings to move them and even at that they hardly budge. Same with the crosses. Does it sound to you that, that does not sound like a 59 LB tension? Reason I wanted 59 because I expected them to loose tension and go down to about 57 or 56. I mean after playing about 3 hours worth of tennis these strings haven't moved and when I try to force it with my fingers to see if they'll slide or move some they don't. They'll move barely if any.

I wonder if the stringer saw the work order for strining at 59 and misread thinking it said 69. If that's the case then that could be why these feel super stiff. If that is true what a waste of good gut and money.

I'd have to string up my next and remaining set of these strings at the other stringing guy I go to most often.


Thanks

WilsonPlayer101
07-12-2011, 05:22 PM
Any takers on the theory that instead of 59 lbs tension as requested they strung it up way beyond that based on the fact that the strings don't move when I hit. I know this because when I look at the string pattern it's not out of whack, it's all in a perfect grid like it was when it was first strung. When I push the strings with my fingers they won't move, maybe ever so slightly but I have to push hard and when they budge it's so little that it goes back into place when I remove my fingers.

fortun8son
07-12-2011, 05:45 PM
Was the package sealed? It may have dried out.
Some idiots will use a hole punch to peg the packages.
I recently got some Titan that was punctured this way!

WilsonPlayer101
07-12-2011, 09:01 PM
Was the package sealed? It may have dried out.
Some idiots will use a hole punch to peg the packages.
I recently got some Titan that was punctured this way!

From what I recall it was but I did not check for hole punches. I do have another package that I got with my order and I examined it and it was not punched or cut so I think it was sealed pretty good.

I am going to get them strung up at a different stringing place and see how it is. If this time it's really good it's means the first guy to string my first set of Blue Spiral over did it.


Thanks

WilsonPlayer101
07-16-2011, 11:46 AM
After playing about three weeks with these strings they are opening up a bit. What I mean is they are starting to feel like gut are supposed to. Maybe they needed some breaking in, something that VS gut from my experience never needed. I think using them this week was my third week playing with Blue Spiral and maybe my 5th or 6th time. I had plan on cutting them out yesterday if they still felt stiff and lifeless but to my surprise they were starting to feel like gut are supposed to. They don't feel 100% the way I'd like them but I have hope. Now I'm hoping that with more play time with these they'll get even more to the gut likeness as they are supposed to.

I was gonna cut them out and have a different stringer install my last set of Blue Spiral. Why you ask if I think they are not that great? Well, as some of you noted maybe the stringer didn't do a good install job or as I might suspect maybe he strung them higher than the 59 LBS tension that I requested so I figured maybe a different stringer with the same strings might yield better results. But now these are opening up some I'm sticking with them.

jim e
07-16-2011, 02:54 PM
^^^ Glad you are enjoying them now! I'm sure over time it will get more to your liking. All strings loose tension over time, but gut has such great resiliency that they play good right up until they break.Just keep hitting with them.