Denser stringbed, Better player?

Discussion in 'Racquets' started by User Name, Jan 5, 2008.

  1. User Name

    User Name Semi-Pro

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    With the new frames (mainly prince),why does it appear that a denser stringbed is preferred for advanced players. It has more control, but let spin potential. I understand the control, but do they find control more important to spin, even though the two go hand in hand. I hit with a lot of spin, but like a heavier control oriented frame. What does everyone think in regards to the stringbed/spin vs. control? Thanks.
     
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  2. RestockingTues

    RestockingTues Banned

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    With great technique you can make up any let up in spin potential; too much topspin will leave that beautiful forehand a sitting mess anyways ;) You need a compromise with spin, even if you hit like nadal, if you don't have the pace you won't win any points off of it.
     
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  3. meowmix

    meowmix Hall of Fame

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    I prefer an open string pattern with a weight in the 12 ounce area. I generally hit flat, so I need the extra spin a 16*18 stringbed is going to give me.

    I also think that the companies are focusing more on control. Just take Wilson for example. Part of their K-factor advertising relies on the [K]ontrol aspect of the game. Personally, I think it's just more for advertising purposes than for playbility purposes.
     
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  4. sargeinaz

    sargeinaz Hall of Fame

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    String pattern has nothing to do with how good of a player you are. The only thing that matters is your game. Fed and Sampras used an open pattern and theyre arguably the best players ever. Muster and Agassi used a closed pattern, both amazing players. Just depends on what you like/are comfortable with.
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    Last edited: May 17, 2011
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  5. fujitsu77

    fujitsu77 Semi-Pro

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    Well said, string pattern doesn't determine how good you are.

    Just go with the pattern that you are most comfortable with!
     
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  6. Alafter

    Alafter Hall of Fame

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    I think it's all just theoratical.
     
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  7. fujitsu77

    fujitsu77 Semi-Pro

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    What do you mean? I think that an 18 x 20 can produce as much spin as any other racquet, but it really depends on one's spin. For me, when I use a prestige (or most other 18 x 20s), I find that my balls are not as loopy as when I use a 16 x 19 racquet.

    That being said, this is not a bad thing, for I find that I can "unload" on the ball, creating a more penetrating shot.
     
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  8. Richie Rich

    Richie Rich Legend

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    i use 18x20 and i get lots of spin on groundies and m serve. i notice about a foot less kick on my second serve but that's no big deal for me. i like the extra directional control.......and the fact that my strings last waaaay longer too :lol:
     
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  9. PackardDell

    PackardDell Semi-Pro

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    With a dense string pattern it is stil possible to give a lot of spin. It is not only the racquet but also the technique of course :)
     
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  10. miniRafa386

    miniRafa386 Hall of Fame

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    it really all depends on your gamestyle, if your ball with a lot of spin and like to pinpoint your shots (cough cough myself), you should play with a denser string patter because your hitting up on the ball and need the control. but if you hit your ball flat and with little topspin, with a game similar to that of roddick or youzhny, you should play with an open string pattern to access more power and make up for the spin lost.
     
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  11. mrname

    mrname New User

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    This is a subject with which I am struggling as well. I certainly appreciate and agree with such comments "it has a lot to do with your technique..." etc...
    I currently play with PS Original 85 (x2)... My primary backup is a PS Tour 95... About a year ago when the Prince Graphite NXG went on sale (which I think it still is on sale... Now I know why), I grabbed one thinking that it will be maybe something similar to POG... Well, I found out that it is not... Besides other differences, I found out the string pattern was 18x20... To me, the racquet felt (and still does) like a frying pan... I put different strings... at 60 lbs some Prince Sythetic Gut 17 gage... Then at 62 lbs, I put Ashaway Crossfire 18 gage... No difference... Now, I thought at this point, it may not be 18x20 pattern but simply the racquet... Then I went to try out K-Factor 95... When I hit with it, I was amazed how similar it felt to NXG... I looked at the specs and sure enough it was 18x20...
    My hitting style is very penetrating... For years, I thought I had a relatively flat hit... However, my partners assure me that I have a very penetrating spin that is heavy... I am also lefty... Power comes from my legs and swing... My grip is semi-western... Single handed backhand... My racquet has Ashaway Crossfire 17 at 63 lbs...
    Couple of times, I loaned my Prince NXG to a Pro... Who hits very loopy top spins... When he uses this racquet his shots become more heavy and less spin loaded...
    So, in my humble opinion, the tight string pattern makes the spin little bit more difficult... However, I am sure that there are a lot of contributing factors: where you catch the ball, the grip, the racquet and a slew of other things... However, there is one thing that is common (again in my opinion) to tighter string pattern racquets: the feeling of hitting with a frying pan (or ping pong paddle)... And I am not really sold on to that... The other thing is that I am not sure how it translates to arm fatigue... Whether it is the racquet or it is simply me: I can not flip (writst) the darn Prince... It puts tremendous pressure to my wrist when I try to hit a short ball with a wrist flick while approaching to , the racquet always just sends jolts to my arm... Maybe it is the courtesy of Prince... I did not hit long enough with Wilson KFactor... The Kfaktor swingweight is a killer for me anyway...
    So, you can imagine my disappointment when I saw the new KBlade with 93 in^2 and 18x20 string pattern. I will give a shot anyway but we will see... What concerns me that it has the same throat pattern as the NXG... Two racquets too much alike... And it is atrike against Wilson...
    So, my search continues to replace my PS Original 85s...

    Cheers,

    MrName
     
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  12. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    This is pretty much the same as the headsize stuff that gets 'discussed' and the racquet weight stuff that gets 'discussed'

    In answer to your post, yes denser stringbeds are designed with the better player in mind although better players use all manner of gear and both open patterns and closed and ones in between. the best manufacturers tweak their stringbeds so that you get advantages of both by having the pattern denser in the middle and more open outside the sweetzone

    It takes technique to hit with spin and lesser players dont have good technique..denser stringbeds are harder to spin
    It takes technique to hit with controllable power and lesser players dont have good technique and dense stringbeds racquets are generally less powerful
    Ditto for small headsizes..takes skill to hit the sweetzone unless playing with aunt mary
    Ditto for heavy racquets..takes skill to swing them fast under control and with technique

    This is precisely why manufacturers suggest certain products for certain skillsets. This is why TW suggests certain products for certain skillsets. This is why people like me think it reasonable to match gear to ability...
     
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  13. FEDEX1

    FEDEX1 Rookie

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    i noticed that when i went from a aero pro drive (16x19) to the wilson k six one 95 (18x20) and i did notice my strokes flatten out....tho i just happened to go from a full western to a semi western grip when i made the racquet switch which is why i think they flattened out.
     
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  14. Matt21

    Matt21 Semi-Pro

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    Well, for starters, one must consider that not all 18x20's are considered equal. Whether or not I prefer 18x20 to 16x19 depends on the frame. I serve the same way all the time, yet I've found my serves with 18x20 tend to bounce a bit higher than my serves with 16x19. Again, though, it depends on the frame and strings/tension. I guarantee you get more spin out of the 18x20 NBlade than you do out of any of the 18x20 Prestiges or Dunlops. In the end, I sold my NBlades not because I couldn't get spin, it was because they weren't heavy enough for me at net or on half-volleys.

    In my opinion, one of the tightest and least spin-friendly 18x20's ever was the Wilson ROK, followed not far behind by the Flexpoint Prestiges (mid and midplus). I couldn't get the same spin, but then, I played with a Ti.Classic and everyone I'd serve against told me my serves were difficult to return.

    In the end, pound for pound, if you're used to a more open string pattern at a certain tension, then you switch to an 18x20 at that same tension, you're probably not going to get the same spin because you're not getting the same bite. I think if you want the best of both worlds (spin, directional control and penetration), you have to drop the tension on those 18x20s, otherwise you simply won't get the amount of dwell time necessary to spin that ball off the string bed and deep into the other court.
     
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  15. Matt21

    Matt21 Semi-Pro

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    One more thing... I speak only for myself, but playing with a denser stringbed has made me a more mechanically sound stroker. For some reason, because I know I'm not getting the same "help" from the stringbed as I would with an open pattern, I really focus on my contact point, my follow through and my finish on my strokes.

    Ultimately, do I think I get better spin from open patterned frames? Absolutely, there's no question! I get better spin on my "junk balls" with frames like my PS 6.0(85), Yonex RDS002T and my radicals. It's just that my groundstrokes don't suffer with the Dunlop 200's I play with and additionally, all in all, I probably play better with them because I'm not "over-relying" on the junk shots I can produce with more open patterns.

    Now, if Dunlop would make that darn Maxply McEnroe with a flex rating of 62 or lower, I think my racquet search would be over!
     
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  16. Chauvalito

    Chauvalito Hall of Fame

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    Very good point. My strokes create a lot of spin and so I have gravitated toward dense string patterns so that i do not produce as much spin with the same stroke. And just like you I have been hitting more penetrating shots instead of loopers that sit up into my opponents strike zone.

    That said, i feel like I can create as much spin as i want by adjusting my stroke, and with the dense pattern i get the added stability and control.

    Furthermore, if you string an 18x10 with something like MSV hex 1.10 which is a hexagonally shaped very thin poly...you get massive spin despite the 18x20.
     
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  17. Chauvalito

    Chauvalito Hall of Fame

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    Good point. I think many of us make the mistake of assuming that flat hitters would prefer dense patterns because they dont hit with spin.

    Mojo pointed this out in another thread, you can take this thought the other way. As you said the open pattern gives you, a flat hitter, the extra spin.

    And for me, a spin player with a semi'western grip, an 18x20 pattern tames that spin and allows me to hit with the same stroke while creating less spin.
     
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  18. Chauvalito

    Chauvalito Hall of Fame

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    I think part of the issue with your experience with dense string patterns was the tension you chose. 60 and above would be quite jarring for many persons play with an 18x20. For reference andy murray strings his radical at 60, which is probably good because he uses a very heavy stick.

    If you give them another shot try 58 or lower depending on the string type you chose. For a poly going as low as 55 should be fine.

    There are other more knowledgable posters who can point in the right directions as far as string type ans tension is concerned as well.
     
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  19. theone

    theone Banned

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    If you're a good player it doesn't matter too much what you use, it really is all about technique.
     
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  20. bad_call

    bad_call Legend

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    i'm a good player and i've used both...definitely prefer 18x20.
     
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  21. Noveson

    Noveson Hall of Fame

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    That's so unbelievably backwards. Why would a player that hit a flatter ball, need to access more power? Also, most players that hit with a lot of spin cannot pinpoint their shots as well as flatter hitters. Federer hits an insane amount of spin, and is onof the more accurate players on tour, yet he hits with an open pattern. I think, just like most things with racquet, it comes down to personal preference. You should play with what you like.
     
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  22. Alafter

    Alafter Hall of Fame

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    Yeah play with anything you feel like. Plenty of people out there who got a racquet and then got good at the game anyhow anyways. Too many factors to really pinpoint things.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2008
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  23. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    Regarding the original post:
    The control on flat balls you get out of an 18x20 frame really only comes into play when you hit the ball hard, also, at lower levels, just getting the ball over the neat and in the court consistently is a challenge, so the extra control the tighter stringbed gives you really isn't noticed by lower level players. These players generally want more power and spin - the trampoline effect is considered a good thing - thus much larger and more open stringbeds for the light stiff rackets used by lower level players.
    A lot of the European clay-court players use Princes and Babolats with very open stringbeds (of course a lot of other players do too) which give them a lot of spin, so it isn't that an open stringbed is only for lesser players. It is just that an 18 main stringbed's benefits are not really noticable by lower level players.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2008
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