View Full Version : Crank or Drop Weight: Which is Faster?

03-04-2004, 11:06 AM
I currently use a Klippermate, but hope to upgrade to either the MS200TT or the Neos 1000. I'm familiar with the virtues of constant pull vs crank & lock, but all things being equal, which machine would produce a faster stringing job? On the Klippermate you have to fuss around with the string in the tension jaw for it to set right and it's generally a pain. Is it easy and quicker on the Laserfibre and Prince? And if so, does one have an edge over the other?

03-04-2004, 10:23 PM
Most dropweight machines are faster than the Klippermate because they have a ratchet or clutch in the string gripper.

David Pavlich
03-05-2004, 11:07 AM
The Neos would be faster than almost all drop weights. The exception might be the Laserfibre 200DX (don't hold me to the number location on the DX). It's a drop weight, but it is activated with a foot pedal. Look for posts on the Laserfibre from a TW Board member named "drak". He has one. It's more money than the Neos however.

The Neos is a great machine. Only a 2 point mounting system but perhaps the best 2 pointer in the industry.

The rest is up to you. If you prefer constant pull, then you'll have to go elsewhere. However, the string jobs will be very consistent with the Neos as long as you do your part and make sure it is calibrated.


03-05-2004, 11:24 AM
I agree with David. String jobs are much faster with the Neos. As for the constant pull deal, it's really all relative. When I used a drop weight, I set the tension 5 - 8 pounds higher on the drop weight to achieve similar results. The first thing I had to do when I moved to the Neos was duplicate my results. This meant I had to drop the tension according to the Neos by the same 5 - 8 pounds. Now, this said the Neos still gives an overall tighter string job than a dropweight machine. It's hard to describe, but the dropweight's string jobs just felt softer then the Neos. That's neither a bad or good thing, it just different.

I think the Neos is the best machine for the money on the market.

Gaines Hillix
03-05-2004, 02:06 PM
A Neos is easy to mount the racquet on and the crank mechanism takes about the same time to use as the MS200TT or MS200DX. The MS200TT is a unique drop weight machine and the MS200DX is even more so because it's a drop weight for all intents and purposes, but it's foot operated. If you include mounting the frame I'd have to give the nod to the Neos. On the issue of string tension, I think's it's generally agreed that a constant pull machine, drop weight or otherwise, will create a stringbed that is about 10% stiffer than a crank machine if the same reference tension is used. This can be compensated for between machines by adjusting the reference tension accordingly and consistency is also important. It's critical to consistently clamp off as soon as possible after the tension head locks out.

03-05-2004, 07:26 PM
three points of clarification that have little to do with the original post:

1. the ms200dx is not a drop weight machine - it has a constant pull spring tensioning mechanism. a description of this mechanism can be read on the stringway website.

2. i think that the neos is a 4 point inside mounting machine - i could be wrong on this one.

3. in general - assuming all other factors are equal - if you want to match the reference tension of a lock out machine with a constant pull machine - you would lower the set tension of the drop weight - not raise it.

something that often times gets overlooked in this discussion is the clamps. a lot of drop weight machines (not the ms200tt of course) use flying clamps - and i can't think of any crank machines that do. i suspect that flying clamps contribute more to a tension mismatch between the machine set tension and the actual stringbed tension than a lock out mechanism on the tensioner. the only empirical evidence i have for this theory is the complaints from teammates that have had their racquets strung both on my ms200tt and our other teammate's SSII indicating that his machine produces a lower tension stringbed than mine for a given reference tension. If rabbit was using a drop weight machine with flying clamps prior to switching to the neos - and he did in fact have to lower the reference tension on the neos to achieve the same type of stringbed on the lock out machine - then that looks like more evidence to bolster this theory.

bottom line - get the best machine you can afford and learn all of it's shortcommings as you attempt to understand all of the issues that are involved with producing consistent and accurate results - mounting system, clamps, tensioning mechanism and tequnique.

btw - i would guess that a given stringer could do a faster job on the neos than any drop weight - even the ms200tt. just a guess tho.

David Pavlich
03-06-2004, 11:11 AM
Sundog...Thanks for the description of the Laserfibre. Didn't know that.

The Neos is a 2 point system. I just used a friend's Neos when I visited him. I had never strung on the machine before so I gave it a try. I had to pay close attention to the fact that it doesn't have 360 degree rotation. Once you get used to it, it's a nice stringing machine.


Steve Huff
03-06-2004, 12:01 PM
Sundog is correct about the Laserfibre. Tim Sullivan described it to me as similar to a smaller version of the spring on a garage door. It seems a great way to get a constant pull in a compact design. It seems like a great machine, even though I ended up buying something else.

Rabbit, if your constant pull (drop weight) machine was not stringing tighter than your Neos, then either one was miscalibrated or you were losing a lot of tension in the drop weight due to the clamps. If calibrated correctly, the constant pull will produce a tighter stringjob than a lockout. Not that it's better. It just should be tighter.

03-07-2004, 10:25 AM
Correct me if I'm wrong, but a dropweight doesn't classify as a constant pull machine. The one I used was a Gamma with floating clamps, and I agree that they were probably the main issue. But, a dropweight is only accurate when the arm is level and if there is additional elongation of the string, then the arm is no longer level and there is some error in tension. It is my understanding that the Laserfibre machines do not have this problem, but I could be wrong.

In any event, I think the whole constant pull vs. lockout is way overblown. It takes me maybe a couple of seconds after tension is reached on my Neos to clamp the string. I'd have to see empirical data on how much tension is actually lost in those 2 - 3 seconds. Now, if I left it sitting there for a minute or better I can understand the concern, but that doesn't happen. Plus, if I strung on a constant pull machine, I' be backing the tension down to match the results I'm getting on the Neos.

Tension is nothing but a number and relative to whatever machine you're on.

David Pavlich
03-07-2004, 04:29 PM
Correct me if I'm wrong, but a dropweight doesn't classify as a constant pull machine. The one I used was a Gamma with floating clamps, and I agree that they were probably the main issue. But, a dropweight is only accurate when the arm is level and if there is additional elongation of the string, then the arm is no longer level and there is some error in tension. It is my understanding that the Laserfibre machines do not have this problem, but I could be wrong.

In any event, I think the whole constant pull vs. lockout is weigh overblown. It takes me maybe a couple of seconds after tension is reached on my Neos to clamp the string. I'd have to see empirical data on how much tension is actually lost in those 2 - 3 seconds. Now, if I left it sitting there for a minute or better I can understand the concern, but that doesn't happen. Plus, if I strung on a constant pull machine, I' be backing the tension down to match the results I'm getting on the Neos.

Tension is nothing but a number and relative to whatever machine you're on.

I had a Gamma 4004, which is a crank machine. I did and experiment with a calibrator. The second it locks out, you can see the calibrator start to retract, especially with string like Sensation.

And the same can be said for a CP machine. I can watch the tension head on mine continue to pull with string like Prince More Feel. As a matter of fact, when I do a string job with More Feel, I let it tension and then wait for a few seconds to allow the tension head to finally stop. And with a crank machine and More Feel, you should tension, clamp, then tension again to get as much of the stretch out as possible.

While you are correct about tension being relative to the machine being used, if you have a customer that's had his racquets strung on a crank machine and you have a CP machine, you should mention that fact.

Having said all of that, consistency is what makes a good string job (as long as the machine is calibrated properly and you follow proper stringing techniques). If you do your stringing the same way every time, it doesn't matter if you use a crank or CP machine. You will have produced a good string job.


03-07-2004, 05:44 PM
drop weights are constant pull. some of them might not be contantly pulling the tension indicated (depending on the position of the arm on the non-LF machines) - but they are still constantly pulling. the LF drop weights are the most contant pulling of all the constant pull machines - since they only respond to gravity and do not have to wait for anything else to tell them to keep pulling - and gravity is always turned on. when gravity fails - that is when tennis will become really interesting.

03-07-2004, 10:03 PM
actually the more accurate term for drop weights is "continuous pull", not "constant pull". The MS200TT is the only constant pull drop weight around, and it should not take any longer to string with than a lock out machine.

03-08-2004, 07:08 AM
A crank machine will, however, string faster than a conventional drop weight machine.

03-08-2004, 04:01 PM
Yes, very true Rabbit.

Gaines Hillix
03-08-2004, 06:24 PM
topspin, how do you make the distinction that an MS200TT is true constant pull, but a typical drop weight is continuous pull, but not constant pull?

03-08-2004, 11:01 PM
Well, if you look at the mechanism of MS200TT and other drop weight machines, the force applied to the string by MS200TT is constant at any angle, while others may vary depend on the level angle. I figured that for MS200TT, the force applied to string is not a function of the angle the level reside. For other drop weight machines, the force will be a function of the angle. Unless the angle become zero, or horizontal, then the force will be exact the reference value.
Stringway may have patent with that mechanism, thus they claim that their machine is constant pull.

03-08-2004, 11:21 PM
I am new to stringing, here are my questions for experts:
Have you checked the tension on each individual strings (main and cross) on crank and drop weight machines after the string job is done?
Can human being detect the variance on the tension, which is to say the racket will behavior different spots on the stringbed?
Let's say one side of main have higher tensions while the other side have lower tensions because the arm was set at two different angles for each side of mains. Will that tension difference make ball behavior differently even at the spots synmatrically along the center line? (assuming the cross are same)

03-09-2004, 01:58 AM
Gaines I was clarifying what sundog was stating in his post. Read what Rabbitt posted "a dropweight is only accurate when the arm is level and if there is additional elongation of the string, then the arm is no longer level and there is some error in tension." That's all I'm trying to point out.

03-09-2004, 06:14 AM
Gaines, I think we're talking semantics here. A continuous pull implies that the machine is exerting a continuous (although not constant) force on the string. This means that while the arm is level, it exerts say 50 pounds of pressure, but as the arm starts to drop the force exerted is not equal to 50 pounds any more.

A constant pull machine exerts the same amount of force on the string. So, after the string sits there clamped, it still exerts 50 pound of pressure regardless of how much elongation occurs.

03-09-2004, 06:26 AM
hangzhou- that is the reason that dropweights are less expensive than crank machines and crank machines are less expensive than constant pull (electronic) models.

There is a greater room for error using a dropweight machine for the exact reason you outlined, the position of the arm. Add to this the fact the most dropweights come with flying or floating clamps, and you compound the error and wind up with lesser tension than indicated on the scale. Dropweights are also slower by nature than crank machines. Dropweights that do not have ratcheting jaws are slower still. If I were going to by another dropweight machine (LaserFibre excluded), it would be one with fixed clamps.

Crank machines are more accurate and are easier and much faster to use than conventional dropweights. From my experience, they are the overwhelming choice of proshops. Primarily, the Prince Neos is the machine of choice. The reaon is that it is a direct descendant of the Ektelon which was the stringing standard for a number of years. The Neos is also very consistent, reliable, and built like a tank. Because there are so many of them out in the field, they also have a great service record.

Electronic machines are better still. They seem to the choice of those that can afford them, and may one day replace the Neos as the defacto standard stringing machine. Then again they may not. The Neos has proven that for the money, you can't beat it. And, most pro shops are interested in producing string jobs that are accurate but quick. I have no idea how an electronic machine stacks up against a crank in terms of production.

Finally, there are the Laserfibre machines which seem to have bridged the gap between drop weights and constant pull. If I were buying a machine now, I would probably have a hard time deciding between the Neos and the LaserFibre machine. They seem to have looked at what was "wrong" with the Neos and gone about fixing it.

With all this, it still comes down to what you get used to. When I strung with a dropweight, my tension was set to just over 60 pounds (between 60 and 65). I say just over because the calibration on the arm didn't really lend itself to 62 pounds or whatever. When I went to a crank machine (the Neos), I had to back the tension down. This is because the Neos' clamps didn't have any drawback and the tensioner pulls the string tighter (IMO). But, it's all what you get used to. I love the results from the Neos because they match any proshop I might get my racket strung at.

03-09-2004, 09:37 AM
Thanks for your comments. Makes lot of sense to me.

I was waiting for my MS200ECO (with fixed clamps) for about 3 months. Problem with Laserfibre, long story. I should be able to get it next week. My friends are asking me already. So I am preparing for that now.

For your last point, which is crank machine will produce more tighter stringbed than drop weight machine if both use fix clamp. I have hard time to understand that. Let's make the case simple by just comparing MS200 ECO and Neos with fixed clamps, and let's say the reference tension is 60 lbs. And also let's assume the stringer take enough time for string elongation. Now MS200 ECO will give the string the constant pull at 60 lbs, while Neos will give the string at less than 60 lbs (due to string elongation and the locking mechanism, unless you pull it twice then the variance will be very small to neglect). Then I would say the MS200 ECO will produce more tighter results than Neos (not saying it's better), thus I would decrease the reference tension if switching from Neos to MS200 ECO. But I don't know how much. Have anyone figured that out?

Once again, I agree with you that the reference tension is only a symbol or yard stick. But it may be different for different machines, so I would ask your input once again.

Thanks once again.

Steve Huff
03-09-2004, 01:22 PM
Rabbit, you make a really good point about matching the proshops around town. I recently bought an electronic head and new Alpha Apex. The hardest part so far is explaining to people that this stringjob is going to feel tighter if the same tension is used. I'd say most of the proshop's I've seen use Ektelon Neos models, so sometimes it's good to get one that is interchangeable with other stringers. But, on the other hand, the electronic stringer is something that stands out as "better" to some people too.

03-10-2004, 05:45 AM
Steve - how long does it take to string with an electronic tensioner? I've heard that it is considerably longer.

03-10-2004, 10:03 AM
I wrote email to Tim yesterday and asked him about the tension adjustment for customer switching from crank machine or other drop weight systems to Laserfibre machines (ECO/TT). He told me to offset the reference tesion down by 8% to 10% for crank machine and start all over again for other drop weight machines. I believe that might be useful to you guys and I would like to share with it.

03-10-2004, 02:10 PM
Thanks to all that responded. After weeks of research and consulting the threads here, i finally pulled the trigger and ordered the MS200TT w/ single action clamps. I know it's been said before, but Tim is the coolest, most knowledgable guy, and he made the decision a little easier to make - even though we joked around that if he quits where does that leave us! Funny, but in starting out i was pretty much set on the Neos for reliability and speed (especially speed - 30/35 minutes is my target) but found that with the MS200 i not only saved some cash, but get all those things (i hope) just in a different setup. I'll post my review and thoughts (only if i've something new to add that hasn't already been covered) after i've a few racquets under my belt.

03-10-2004, 05:09 PM

Wow, Laserfibre is doing good business! I ordered my TT last Friday. Tim mention that it will probably be shipped out this week.

Did Tim give you an actual shipping date?

03-10-2004, 06:29 PM

He told me they were expecting a shipment today (Wed., 3/10), or Thurs., and that most orders would go out by Friday at the latest.

03-11-2004, 01:42 AM
Hey you will enjoy the MS200TT. I also have with the single action clamps and really enjoy it and would be the exact same thing now if I had to, even though the price went up.

03-11-2004, 08:01 AM
Thanks Topspin.

One thing i'd like to point out that Tim mentioned yesterday as it relates to speed and convenience was that in general a 5-7 second pull is all that is needed to bring a string to reference (desired tension) and that holding it longer (if you have to run out for a beer - hey, it happens!) will not hurt the string job, but that pulling and clamping faster than 5-7 seconds (especially with soft, stretchy string) might result in inconsistencies. He pointed out that because of the "constant pull" the stringer would not stretch the "life" out of the string even if it had to sit on one for a while. Not sure if i buy that one, but if it's true, and i don't have to babysit every string, that's a plus for me. In general, Tom estimated that at 5-7 sec. (which he labeled as a comfortable pace) total string time would be 25-30 minutes. With the Klippermate my best time (for a good job) was 50-60 minutes, and it was far from comfortable.
Topspin, and other Laserfibre owners, what is your total stringing time on average? How long do you let the string pull before clamping?
Thanks again.

03-13-2004, 04:41 AM
Yes i've had that talk with him and he mentioned that to me about string pulling and how strings are constructed; he knows his stuff, that's for sure.

I still take about 40 minutes to string just because I like to take my time and I don't hold the tip like I should. But a friend of mine used it and loved it and cranked out racquets in just over 20 minutes each. I let the string pull about 7-10 seconds. Constant pull is really nice to work with, you see the tension head adjust when you release the clamps. Great machine, you will love it.

03-13-2004, 06:05 AM
I take about 10-11 minutes to do the mains. I dont necessarily monitor the time between pull and clamping - but I am confident that my relaxed pace allows for the elongation to occur and the tension to even out. I take about 15-16 minutes to weave and tension the crosses. That being said - a total stringjob (cutting out the old, measuring the new, inspecting and mounting the frame takes about 40-45 minutes. I look forward to stringing (find it a semi-therapeutic task in contrast to my almost totally mental occupation) and relish the thought of a quality stringjob. If I was making my living at it, I would probably try to shave a few minutes off the total elapsed time - but as it is, I am in no hurry.

03-13-2004, 10:06 AM
onotu2 and bravm3pwr:

Did you receive anything regarding the shipment for your orders? Mine suppose to be shipped out this Wednesday or Thursday, but nothing happened. I didn't get the tracking number via email, I wrote email to Tim and haven't receive anything. I check my credit card, no charges. I called their hot line and no one pick up the call.

Weird. Something wrong once again?

03-13-2004, 07:09 PM

No I have not received any indication that my stringer has shipped. I have also written an email on Monday and so far nothing. Iím very anxious because I just sold my stringer and need a new one ASAP. I called Laserfibre on Friday and Tim told me that it would be shipping out that evening. Heís probably got lots of backorder and is in the process of filling it. I also checked my credit card and email and so far nothing. Iím assuming that everything will be straightened out on Monday. If any of you guys hear anything new, please keep me abreast. I guess I could contact Tim again on Monday and then go from there. If I canít get it quickly enough, I will go with one of the Alpha or Gamma model.

Itís the weekends so you will probably not get a response from Laserfibre.

03-13-2004, 10:01 PM

Thanks for letting me know your order status. I have been waiting for the machine for about 4 months already. The order was placed at the beginning of last Dec. The shippment from Netherland was delayed by winter storms, so it arrived at around Feb. Then they found out that one of the parts was mismanufactured with wrong tolerance, then they have to wait for new, correct parts to be remade and shipped. I upgraded from fly clamp version to fixed clamp machine, and Tim told that they share the same problem part, so I have to wait for the new part. This Monday, I got email from them and was told that the part would come in Tuesday or Wednesday, and my machine should be shipped out early Wednesday or Thursday. But nothing happened, so I was not quite happy.

I ordered the machine last year, and it has been for about 4 months already. I break string very ofen, like every week. So it's a big deal for me even Laserfibre gave me four strings for free.

I could go with Alpha or Gamma models, but I really like Laserfibre's contant pulling machines. So I stick on with them. But 4 months of waiting is really way too long...

Anyhow I will keep you update.

03-15-2004, 12:27 PM
bravm3pwr and Hangzhou

I spoke with Tim today. He told me he was standing in a room of boxes ready for shipment and some being processed for shipping. He sounded a little swamped, but promised that my machine (which should've gone out Friday) would go out today or tomorrow, and would arrive no later than Thurs. I'll keep my fingers crossed.

03-15-2004, 04:21 PM
onotu2 and bravm3pwr: Called Time and he told me that my machine was shipped out last Thurs or Friday. Somehow the tracking # hasn't sent to me... I am still waiting for the #. Anyhow hopefully I will be able to receive the machine this Thusday.

Thanks for both of you. Have fun stringing.

03-19-2004, 11:09 PM

Have you received your machine yet? Have you received the tracking # yet? I haven't gotten hold of mine yet.

03-21-2004, 06:48 AM
hangzhou and bravm3pwr,

haven't gotten mine yet, and i must admit i'm pretty bumped out right now. if i don't get a straight answer from tim on monday (or get no response - he was never returned my call on friday), I will cancel my order and go the the neos instead. i suspect there may be a back-order or manufacturing problem that tim's not being up front about. please let me know when (and if) you get yours. good luck.

03-21-2004, 08:23 AM

I'm in the same boat. Maybe we should call Tim together. If I do not get a straight answer and a valid tracking #. I will cancel and go with a upright Alpha. Email me.

03-21-2004, 10:17 AM
Onotu2 and bravm3pwr:

There was a back order problem at laserfibre. Here is what happened to me:

I placed order for MS200 ECO (flying clamp) at the beginning of last Dec, and was told that I should get the machine between Christmas and Near Year. Bcause of winter storm, that didn't happen at all.

I was checking the status with Tim via email or phone calls once a week, no new shipment had come in. Until 2/6/2004, I received email from Tim, and learned that they got machines. But they found that there was one problem with MS200 ECO machines. The mounting stock bracket (the part of the stringer that locks the adjustable mounting system securely to the turntable) were manufactured with wrong tolerance, thus it might not be able to hold regular tensions. So I called Tim and asked him upgrade my order to MS200 ECO with fixed clamp. He told me that new shipment will come in next week or two.

After two weeks, Tim told me that they got the new shipment and found that all machines ECO, TT and DX have the same wrong mounting stock bracket. They have to wait stringway to make new correct brackets and airborne to laserfibre. So everyone had to wait.

On 3/9/2004, Tim sent me email confirming that my machine is ready for shipment that week (I assumed they received new brakcets). So I called him and he told me that my order will be shipped out first before Friday since I was second in their order queue. He also promised me that he will email me the tracking #.

On 3/11/2004, I sent him an email asking for tracking # and got nothing back. The next day, I found there were no charges on my CC, and made numerous calls to Tim. I couldn't get though at all.

Next Monday, 3/15/2004, I called Tim and he told me that my machine was shipped out last Thursday, 3/11/2004, I should be able to recieve it by 3/19. The credit card charge would show up later. He promised me that he will email me my tracking #.

Until 3/18, I received no tracking # at all, and that day no delivery also. So I called Tim and didn't get through neither. Email him asking for tracking # and no return neigher. Also I found there was charges on my CC already.

On 3/19, I made phone calls again, and finally got hold of a lady. I told her that I need my tracking # and she promised to call me back with that. But nothing happened. She mentioned Tim was out of office. In that afternoon, I received an email from Tim at around 3 PM with my tracking #. He told me that they could not track the shipment since the #'s not shown up on their UPS system. It showed billing and pick up at Laserfibre. Also he told me that he was told by their UPS account rep that there were several parcels in UPS distribution center with label torn off on their conveyer belts. He told me he was on his way to UPS distribution center.

After I got the tracking number, I found there was no detailed information on UPS tracking system for my shipment, except it was billed on 3/15. I emailed that to Tim also.

After 5:30 PM, I rechecked UPS and found the shipment was rescaned and rescheduled for delivery date of 3/25, I also sent this information to Tim. I heard nothing from him.

It was long story and I have been extreme patient. I do believe MS200 ECO is a good machine, little bit pricy.

I will give Tim a call tomorrow to find out what's happened. I will keep you guys updated.

PS: Laserfibre sent me four free strings as token of their apologies and appreciates.

03-22-2004, 07:19 AM
Called Tim this morning, his first words were that I would receive my machine today. Woo Hoo! The UPS tracking number also confirms.
The lack of communication from Tim on order status was a little unnerving, but i'm hopeful it was worth the wait. Must admit, i was getting excited about ordering a Neos since i got to use one over the weekend - it's a nice machine. Hope you guys get good news and receive yours soon. Also, please share your thoughts on the stringer when you get a chance.

03-22-2004, 08:04 AM
onotu2, hangzhou

I got my UPS confirm today. LF shipping and tracking needs lots of improvement.

onotu2, what did you order?

03-22-2004, 08:16 AM

got the MS200TT w/single actions clamps. also thought about getting the stand, but Tim convinced me it was best to order a media (video projector) cart from Staples that has shelves, wheels and adjustable height. glad to hear you'll be getting yours soon. i'm starting to think Tim is a one man show in that Rhode Island office, hence the disorganization when it comes to shipping and notifications- you'd think that stuff would be automated.

03-22-2004, 04:40 PM
Talked with Tim this morning and received email from him this afternoon. I was told that UPS/Laserfibre will refund the shipping charge and there is no way to expedite the shipping, so my machine will arrive this Thursday hopefully.

It's UPS's fault after Tim proved with pick up list for my case. I have same feeling that Tim has huge hands taking care of everything. But should we receive the tracking # early, then delay might be...

Will share whatever I found on my MS200 ECO with you guys....

03-23-2004, 06:32 AM
Got it!
Instructions are the worst i've ever seen. Fortunately, it's not hard to figure out. I was a little freaked out that the tension rod doesn't have the scale numbers affixed to it, you have to use a ruler! Setting up the ruler against the weight is easy, but what would it cost to attach a label to the rod. The mounting system took a little time to get just right - i hope with a some practice it'll get easier. Specifically, lining up the white plastic posts (don't know the tech term) against the frame and adjusting the hold down clamps took more time and fidgeting than i had expected - i kept having to make minor adjustments as the frame would rock or move. Must admit, i was being extra careful and taking my time to really get a sense of the role for each mechanical part, so that added to the time.
Okay, so that was the hard part. Once the racquet was mounted, the actual stringing was so easy and smooth, I'd even describe it as fun. Btw, the racquet was a POG mid. The clamps (single action) were great, even though they were sticking a bit on the glide bars at first, but loosened up after some use. I used the Laser Supreme Natural string (17g) which felt very soft, but the clamps did a great job of holding with no crimping or marking - my klippermate vice-grips or gamma fly clamps can't touch it. Feeding the string and pulling the tension is where this machine rocks. It was fast. Which brings me back to my original post. I had a chance to use the Neos 1000 over the weekend (btw, the mounting system is much quicker and cleaner) and i can tell u imo the Laserfibre is not only marginally faster, but it's also easier on the hands. Let's not even get into into the constant pull thing, which in of itself is awesome.
Overall, i'm very happy, and looking forward to doing more racquets - never thought i'd say that!

03-23-2004, 07:48 AM
Just got off the phone with Tim. It's definitely worth giving him a call to clarify things. for me it was mounting. i feel a lot more confident now. also, he explained that they don't affix a decal to the rod because it's an expensive piece (hand rolled stainless steel). it also contributes to weight of the pull, and they are afraid that over time a decal could come apart and gunk up the rod. he suggested marking the rod with a permanent marker for tensions u use the most. also pointed out that as far as sequence on mounting goes, start with the head inside supports, flip on hold downs (don't tighten) move down to throat inside supports, (adjustment for racquet length should only be made to throat support post only) flip on hold downs. inside supports should just touch frame, should not fit snug or require pushing the racquet down in place as you may get distortion when you tighten the hold downs. Tim's uses just the right lingo and illustrations to clear things up, you should be stringing in no time. Let me know how u do with your machine. Maybe we should start another post.

03-23-2004, 08:05 AM
Ok I've been checking out this thread regularly just to see if and when you would get your machines. I must say you guys are very patient. I also had to wait a few weeks when I got my MS200TT (was called the ML100) back in Dec 2000.

Onotu, your feedback is pretty much what I expected. Yes the instructions are very simple and really only cover the basic parts of the machine with some little tips here and there. I spoke to Tim about it many times and he mentioned he was working on a video, which would be great. The fact that the numbers are not on the rod was explained to me as being because of the various combinations of weights (you can have 3 combinations if you buy the extra weight depending on the tension range you want to), it would simply clutter up the rod too much. Also with time the numbers could disappear by getting scraped, so they came up with the ruler. You can still use a marker to mark certain points on it yourself. I did it too, you can check my pics at http://photos.yahoo.com/topspin_tw

The mounting system is a lil tricky. You can have the top mounting post always fixed and tight as they say in the instructions. The back one you adjust based on the racquet you're doing. What I do is position first the head of the frame on the white thingies and loosely tighten those top hold downs. Then I align the throat white thingies so they're positioned the way I want them once the frame is fully mounted. So I adjust the back mount post and the height of those throat white supports. Once it looks good, I bring back down the height of the white supports and tighten the mounting post. Tighten these well so they don't move. Then I loosely tighten those throat hold down supports. Then I alternate tightening all 4 hold downs until I got a nice snug fit. Finally I bring those throat white supports back up as close to the grommets as possible. Since I tested the height earlier, they should line up really close to the frame and be only slightly loose. If they're too tight, you will need to readjust your throat mounting post. Then bring you 12 o'clock support up against the frame. Again make sure you don't overtighten it, it should loosely be thouching the frame. Just remove any slack.

Once you're frame is mounted properly, you can string with peace of mind knowing that your frame is sitting in the safest mounting system in the world and you're racquet is as safe as can be.

I like that you describe the actual stringing as fun. I feel the same way. I love breaking strings just so it allows me to go string again, lol. Clamps are great yes, as is tensioning, so smooth and easy.

As you get used to the mounting and making sure you move the single action clamps from the base so they slide easily, you will enjoy the machine even more.

03-23-2004, 08:35 AM
Thanks Topspin,

That's pretty much how Tim explained it, but reading it again always helps. Turns out i got one of the original instruction sheets which is a straight translation from Dutch, and explains why it was so bad. I understand there is better reworked one that typically goes out - did u help write this? Was worried that maybe i made the wrong choice after trying out the Neos, but the smooth operation and constant pull have me convinced otherwise.
Thanks again.