View Full Version : Horror story

drop shot
05-05-2004, 08:17 PM
There is a local pro here in town who everyone thinks is the greatest racquet stringer in the world. Why? Because he can string a racquet in 10 minutes! The problem is that becuse he strings so quickly he has broken several of the lighter frames. And when this happens, he refuses to do anything about it and he blames the owner by saying that the frame was already damaged and he even told one guy that he had no business playing with a "granny frame" anyway. It amazing to me that he gets any business but people just assume that he is a pro so he must know what he is talking about. He has a USRSA master stringers certificate on the wall but yet he uses the tensioner to tighten hisw knots (whick I have heard was wrong). In one of my friends racquets which he gets strung with kevlar on the mains and synthetic gut on the crosses, he cut out the synthetic gut when it broke and just retsrung the synthetic gut and left the kevlar! He charged my friend full price for doing this. Oh well just wanted to vent about this!

05-05-2004, 09:33 PM
Next time you're in his shop, yank that certificate off the wall.

Jerry Seinfeld
05-06-2004, 06:38 AM
I have also had some unprofessional experiences with an MRT. It has really made me question the validity of the credential. I suspect most MRT's are professional, competent and careful. There are some that don't live up to the standard of the MRT, thereby reducing the value of the credential. Sad, but true.

Gaines Hillix
05-06-2004, 11:56 AM
An MRT(or any othe stringer, for that matter) has no excuse doing this, but some people are just lazy and take short cuts. There are plenty of doctors out there I wouldn't want working on me either!

David Pavlich
05-06-2004, 01:03 PM
A certificate is useless if the person named on it cannot live up to its implication of professional workmanship. I come here and to other sites to pick up anything that will help me do a better job.

What I don't understand is why, if this guy is so bad, do players continue to use his services?


drop shot
05-06-2004, 04:23 PM
Because most of the people who use him just drop their racquets off to him and never watch him work his magic. And secondly they probably couldnt tell the difference between a synthetic gut and a poly any way!

Steve Huff
05-08-2004, 09:21 PM
I have been stringing for around 25 years. Joined the USRSA back then too, and still belong. I am not a CS or MRT, and like many of you, I've often questioned the validity of some of the names that appear on them. When you receive USRSA's magazine (RSI), it names the people that have just received their CS or MRT. Many are from big sporting goods stores such as Sports Authority. Some SA stringers may be excellent (ie I think Tom Martinez works there, and he seems very knowledgeable about the tennis racket business), but I've been in some, and would doubt that they change bumper guards/grommets, something you have to do in 15 mins to pass these tests. I string between 4-500 rackets per year, which leads to maybe 20 bumper guard/grommet changes. The SA store I was in had a stringing machine on the floor, but no one used it the entire time I was there. But, one of the SA stringers is a tester also. So, it benefits their store by having more MRTs. I hate to accuse them without knowing for sure, but it sure seems like a conflict of interest having your own store do your certifying. I can't always get a bumper guard and grommets in a racket in 15 minutes, which they require. But, I can get them in just fine. I just don't do enough of them to feel that fast.
Well, just my rant.

David Pavlich
05-09-2004, 07:19 PM
Steve: I'm sure you know that when you take the test, you supply the racquet and grommet strip. I used a Wilson HH 5.3 OS for my test. I can do one of these in less than 10 minutes. Most OS racquets are fairly easy to install the grommet kits because of the more mild radius of the head. Besides, I string so many 5.3s (and replace grommet kits), it was the natural choice. This racquet also strings quite nicely with a 2 piece job, which is required for the test.

I though about taking the test with a POG MP (14X18 pattern...one of the easiest racquets to string), but putting a grommet kit in it is not that easy. I usually end up heating the bumper with a heat gun to make the bumper soft enough to go around the head.

Anyway, I can understand player's concern that maybe the certification isn't as "real" as some may think. I know in my shop, I do an excellent job, but it's my business and I have a HUGE interest in making sure that my customers are happy with what they take to the court.

I actually lost a racquet sale this past week because of a string job. A lady was demoing a bunch of racquets because she said her racquet was hurting her arm. I finally convinced her to bring her racquet in for me to check. Sure enough, it hadn't been strung in over a year and the string that was in it was some sort of syngut. I strung it with Sensation and told her to try it out and see if she found more comfort. Damned if she didn't come in and tell me she played better with it than her demo racquets...and it didn't hurt her arm.

I lost a sale, but I gained a steady customer. I did her husband's racquet and he was quite pleased with it.

So...I'm convinced that if the certification is with someone that has a vested interest in why he or she is stringing, then the CS/MRT is worth a lot.


Gaines Hillix
05-10-2004, 06:21 AM
I agree with David's comments. I used a POG OS for my test. It's easy to replace the strips on and lends itself to 2 piece stringing. I agree the test is a bit arbitrary and one could argue that there is more than one way to correctly address an issue, but the test was not unfair by any means.

Steve Huff
05-12-2004, 11:25 AM
I guess getting the MRT or CS would be nice for some of the discounts given by some manufacturers, but it wouldn't increase my business. I really don't want it to increase anyway. I've never advertised, don't even have business cards, and string 4-500 rackets/year, maybe more this year. Too many more would cut into my playing time.

Gaines Hillix
05-12-2004, 02:08 PM
My main reason for taking it was to expand my knowledge and stringing skills for my own enjoyment. I picked up several things studying for it and from the MRT tester. It may come in handy one of these days if I ever need a second job :-)!

05-12-2004, 09:10 PM
Gaines, do you think Amadeus has in-house racket techs?

Gaines Hillix
05-13-2004, 11:16 AM
coachrick, LOL! Not going there!