Does gut come in reels?

Discussion in 'Strings' started by looseswing, Jul 13, 2006.

  1. looseswing

    looseswing Professional

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    Is there any way to get gut in a reel or something similar because real= lower price.
     
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  2. TheSnowMan

    TheSnowMan Semi-Pro

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    I guess you can buy it from the manufacturer, but I highly doubt it.
     
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  3. psp2

    psp2 Banned

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    no. a cow only has so much intestine to donate.
     
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  4. Court_Jester

    Court_Jester Hall of Fame

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    A cow's gut (or serosa, to be precise) is only long enough to string three racquets, not long enough to form even the smallest reel.
     
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  5. looseswing

    looseswing Professional

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    Well if not in a reel can you get it discounted if you buy in bulk from somewhere?
     
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  6. PBODY99

    PBODY99 Hall of Fame

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    Sure, contact the manufatures directly. Now how you use up 100 to 500 sets to save a few dollars........... :cool:
     
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  7. MTChong

    MTChong Professional

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    I think you have it the other way around; I think it's 3 cows for enough for 40 ft. I may be wrong - but it's what I hear.
     
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  8. theace21

    theace21 Hall of Fame

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    I sell very few sets of gut. Most people just prefer something cheaper. I am going to ask the local proshop how many sets he moves a week. Can't be that many...
     
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  9. psp2

    psp2 Banned

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    from http://www.scienceiq.com/ShowFact.cfm?ID=211

    How Many Cows Does It Take To String A Tennis Racquet?

    How many cows does it take to string a tennis racquet? According to Professor Rod Cross of the University of Sydney, an expert on the physics and technology of tennis, the answer is 3. Many top professional tennis players still prefer to string their racquets with natural gut instead of synthetics due to natural gut's soft feel, high elasticity and ability to retain tension. However, this is not an alternative for everyone since natural gut is quite expensive. Why? Cross reports there is a great deal of manual time and labor in removing, slitting, washing, twisting, drying and polishing natural gut strings, hence the expense.

    Natural gut tennis strings are made from a cow's (or sometimes a bull's) small intestine. Part of the digestive tract, the small intestine is a long flexible tube which expands or contracts to accommodate ingested food. The intestine of a cow or sheep is about 120 feet long. However, only the thin outermost stretchy layer of the intestine, the serosa, is used for making tennis strings. Consequently, it requires roughly 3 cow's intestines to string a tennis racquet - not because the intestine is too short but because the serosa is very thin. The serosa is removed and cut into long ribbons which are cleaned through a series of salt and chemical baths. About 18 ribbons are assembled and twisted as a long string and dried under tension in a temperature and humidity controlled room. The string is polished into a smooth, round and clear string. A protective coating (like polyurethane) is added to reduce abrasion and prevent moisture from entering the string.

    'The serosa of sheep and pig intestines would also work, however they are used for sausage skins, so the manufacturers prefer to use the more readily available and slightly stronger intestines from cows,' said Cross. 'Many people think that natural gut is made from cats. However, the small intestine of a cat is only 4 feet long and therefore too short to make a tennis string.' According to Cross, the word 'catgut' appears to have evolved from the use of natural gut in a musical instrument called a 'kit' or perhaps from the name of the town in Germany where the strings were made.
     
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  10. Court_Jester

    Court_Jester Hall of Fame

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    You're right. I re-read the article that Rod Cross wrote in the book "The Physics and Technology of Tennis", which he co-authored with Howard Brody and Crawford Lindsey (copyright 2002) and he did say that it takes 3 cows to make one tennis string. However, I noticed that he left out the line below:
    The line is in the book but not in the online article cited by psp2.
     
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  11. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    I wonder whoever came up with the idea of using the cow's intestinal linings for racquet strings. How would this happen?

    Unless, of course, "gut" was used in something like archery long before it was used for tennis.
     
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  12. diredesire

    diredesire Super Moderator

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    I think it was something like this...

    Btw, wasn't there a thread like this... with the same exact thread title?

    (psst, check the search ;))
     
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