Full Poly String Job Shelf Life on Backup Racket?

Discussion in 'Strings' started by smoothtennis, Oct 7, 2009.

  1. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    I have read from many posters here that a poly string job like PHT or Lux will last about 20 hrs before it goes dead. And I used to play with only one racket, and just restring after they broke.

    However, I went and bought a proper set of two rackets now, and it got me to thinking about the shelf life of backup rackets. If I string up a backup racket with a full set of poly - and DO NOT play with it for like a month or two - will the tension and playability of the string be degraded to a significant degree?

    How do you guys manage your second or third rackets string jobs when you knowthey may sit for months on end? ie, I have my third racket, which now I am thinking may sit in the bag for 6 months or longer before I may use it as a backup racket in an emergency.

    What would be the best long-term string that would not lose all of it's playability sitting in a bag that long?
     
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  2. li0scc0

    li0scc0 Hall of Fame

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    I would like to know this too!

    I put the same string in the racquets and simply rotate them. So they theoretically go 'bad' around the same time.
     
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  3. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

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    Polyester has the best "static" tension maintenence of any racquet, so that means that it will keep it's tension better than synthetic gut if you just let it sit for a week or two. Poly's reputation is that it will lose tension dramatically if you are actively using and hitting with it. That being said, I wouldn't know if a month's time would affect it or not, but I do know that it will keep its tension better than synthetic gut in that same amount of time. Did this help?
     
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  4. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    Yeah - that helps. That is exactly what I was asking about. So all in all, you are saying that full poly sitting in a bag for six months will play better than a similar syn gut job sitting in the bag for six months when you decide to pull it out and use it as a backup?

    I wonder if the playability is greatly affected by sitting six months without any hitting?

    I know this -I was playing a 4.5 dubs match a few weeks back, and my partner busted both rackets strings in the first game. He pulled out a 10 yr old racket and string job as his only backup, and couldn't control the ball at all either serves, returns, volley's or groundies. Those strings were useless. That was a syn gut.
     
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  5. JT_2eighty

    JT_2eighty Hall of Fame

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    I think that is helpful. And, not to highjack this thread, but I notice you like isospeed baseline, how does that fare as far as tension maintenance? feel? I saw the price on that and it's hard to pass up a reel of that if it plays well! Which poly's does it share similarities with?

    From my experience, the shelf life of a backup racquet with full poly is decent, and definitely better than syn gut. 6 months though, depending on the temperature you store your racquet, and many other variables will affect it for sure. If you have backup racquets all strung the same, I would rotate them, say perhaps every match or set. That's what I try to do, but also because my hands sweat like crazy and it's easier to pick up a dry racquet every set or so.
     
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  6. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

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    Yes

    Most likely, I wouldn't want to be the one to try it out.

    Yeah, under those conditions, any string would most likely be useless, but poly would be ever-so-slightly-probably-wouldn't-be-able-to-pick-up-the-difference better off.
     
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  7. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

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    Hey JT_2eighty, I've actually switched to a poly hybrid (Gosen Polylon Ice 17g mains and Technifibre Pro Red Code 16g crosses 58/62 lbs), but I feel that I can give some feedback about the Isospeed.

    It is definitely a lot softer than many of the cheap polys out there, so feel is pretty good IMO. The tension maintence is pretty good as well. My only qualm with it was the fact I was breaking it every 4-5 hours and that it was a little springy for me. If I served and volleyed 100% of the time, I would totally use it, but the fact is I serve and volley 60-70% of the time so I wasn't getting the results that I wanted out of it from the baseline. Still, for $40, you can't really go wrong with this string, and it's really easy to string.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2009
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  8. nadalfan1992

    nadalfan1992 Rookie

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    Here is another question since i'm was thinking of a hybird of a poly like pro hurricane 18g and either isospeed control 16 not classic or isospeed professional 17 not classic since these have very good playability how long of life would these 2 hybirds have in a backup racket.Because i'm not a string breaker.
     
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  9. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    I know we're throwing around some hypotheticals and stuff, but I always consider the fresher set of strings to be the better players as long as the racquet is set up the way you want it. It wouldn't make any sense to me to string two of my racquets and then just leave one of them in the bag for months - I always alternate them. Any reason not to?

    Oh yeah, I was going to mention that those 10 year old strings were probably pretty gross, but that partner sounds like he busted strings in his two regular racquets and then switched to an old oddball. If that was the case, that different racquet in my hands would throw me at least as much as extremely old strings I think.
     
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  10. TennezSport

    TennezSport Hall of Fame

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    Not 6..................

    While I agree with most of what was said here, we all know that string degrades immediately after stringing. While they do lose properties at different rates, the best you can hope for is approximately 3 to 4 months (except for NG string, which can last much longer). In synth gut and multi string you lose tension mostly, but in poly/co-poly strings you also lose elasticity as the string ages.

    Best thing to do is to rotate your racquets. We have players here that keep 2 in their bag and 1 or 2 here being strung. They just rotate out the racquet that breaks first or is worse for wear.

    Cheers, TennezSport :cool:
     
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  11. Love50

    Love50 Rookie

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    When I used to play a full Cyber Flash setup, my threshold was about two weeks of shelf life before I cut it out (compared to 4-5 hours play time).
     
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  12. vinnier6

    vinnier6 Professional

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    i have been using sppp for 3 years now, i keep 3 racquets strung, getting 2 at a time resturng rotating the 3rd one each restring....i at one point in time had the 3rd racquet with the same string in it for 6 months, and i could hardly tell the difference between it and the other two when i hit with it....not bad, thats exactly why i use a full poly like sppp.....
     
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  13. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    Great feedback and ideas guys. It turns out I only have a set of two fames that match (APDC). My emergency racket is now a Wilson sixone 95 18x20 - and it swings very differently.

    So...with the two new frames, it looks like I will be rotating them, and keep a full poly set up on my emergency backup.
     
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  14. alidisperanza

    alidisperanza Hall of Fame

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    I think someone mentioned it but it also helps to store racquets in a cool, dry place as well. I've had a poly bed go flat dead from leaving it in the car for 2 days. Never hit with it and had to cut it out.
     
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  15. armsty

    armsty Hall of Fame

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    I use 2 rackets and at the moment they carry different string as I am testing some new ones but during serious season as you'd call it, I am very much into using system where I rotate rackets day by day and make sure if I use racket a for comp one week, I use racket b for comp the next week, and usually the strings are broken or dead within these two weeks or so and will have a new job for the next week of competition.
     
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  16. javierjavier

    javierjavier Rookie

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    i tend to rotate because my rackets are usually set up different (strings and tension), and i'll switch depending on who i'm playing and the style i'll want to play.

    the only problem with rotating is that your rackets are more likely to break at the same time. i've had that happen to me in one match and i had to borrow a racket finish.

    that said, the odds are small enough though (since i use poly) that i'm comfortable just carrying an older model emergency racket for those rare occasions. i might consider carrying a third if i played with a gut or all syn gut setup.
     
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  17. liftlobby2

    liftlobby2 Rookie

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    full poly, anything within 6 mths.
     
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  18. nickarnold2000

    nickarnold2000 Hall of Fame

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    I play with 3 identical rackets that I rotate; sometimes during the same match. I always cut the strings out after about 10-12 hours of play because the poly, at this point is quite dead. Since I cut the strings out earlier, I've never had a problem with strings breaking during a match. Rotating is the only way to go, IMO
     
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  19. ClubHoUno

    ClubHoUno Banned

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    I rotate constantly between my 4 PST GT's, and also from time to time try to use my 2 wet weather PST carbon frames.

    I currenlt have a hybrid of Babolat VS natty gut and Lux Alu BB POWER - and I typically play 10-12 hours with each racquet, before the gut breaks or I cut it out because the Lux has died.

    But as I only play 2 times a week during the indoor season, it will take 2 months before all 4 of my main racquets will need to be restrung, as I rotate the racquets carefully, each time I play. I always use at least 2 or 4 racquets each time I play, to make sure I use the strings an equally amount of time. But because it's a hybrid of Natty gut, which has the best tension stability of all strings and a copoly, which only loose a lof of tension the first 48 hours and then almost only loose tension, when you actually hit with the strings, I almost do not notice any difference from a freah stringbed and one that is 2 months old, because I carefully rotate them, so none of the stringbeds get played more than max 10-12 hours.

    If you make sure to rotate your racquets and keep track of how long you have used each frame, in my view you won't experience any problems.

    Of course if we're talking half a year or more, only natty gut would be playable after such a long time.....

    Signum PRO TORNADO/HYPERION
     
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  20. volusiano

    volusiano Hall of Fame

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    I've had rackets with full poly string jobs that I don't use as often anymore, and after they sit around unused for over a year, I remeasured them with the ERT300 dynamic tension device, and their DT readings hardly dropped much as all. I tried to actually play with them again and they don't feel much different, either.

    For references, polys that I used are SPPP, Top Spin Cyberflash and Poly Polar, Weiss Cannon Silver and Match Power.

    If you have 2 frames of the same for backup, I would rotate them. That way, they feel the same as they wear the same. But if you have a different racket mostly just for backup and a main favorite, I wouldn't worry too much about shelf life from the perspective of tension loss as long as you don't leave it in a hot car every day.
     
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  21. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    Thank you all for the very informative posts on managing more than one racket.
     
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  22. Power Player

    Power Player Talk Tennis Guru

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    I get restrung every 2 weeks. My thought process is to use a stick for 2 weeks, until the strings die or lose tension, then rotate to the other.

    I think when I have a matching 3, I will rotate more often, and keep the 3rd as the fresh one to start the cycle with again.
     
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  23. FloridaAG

    FloridaAG Professional

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    I wish I had a system - I generally have 3 frames (really I have 5 but I keep 3 in my bag and keep 2 in a different city for use when I am there) - I always end up favoring one using it more than the others and then get it restrung and move to the next one such that I have a rotation rather than using the frames equally etc. Not sure if it superstition, psychological or what.

    Drak recently strung 2 of my frames (same string one in 16 and one in 17 with a one pound tension difference as I am experimenting) and I have gravitated to one of the frames.
     
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  24. vinnier6

    vinnier6 Professional

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    pretty much how i manage my racquets....i personally believe you need a minimum of 2 to play, i usually rotate racquet inbetween sets to get a dry grip....then i got a 3rd of the same exact racquet, i will fresh string 2 at a time that i use to play, and keep the 3rd as a back up or warm up racquet....

    the best thing about having a 3rd racquet is you can try out different strings and tensions without messing with your current play set up....thats how i came to my current string....
     
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  25. coyfish

    coyfish Hall of Fame

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    I have the same issue. I string using a hybrid but the luxilon in the mains still goes dead after a couple weeks if I don't play that much.

    I always use my favorite stick. Takes me about 12-15 hours to break lux / syn gut hybrid and by that time my backup is losing tension.

    Maybe I should go full syn gut but I would hate to be in a match and have to use a different string with less control.
     
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  26. Ketot

    Ketot New User

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    i have a racquet strung with pht, its my backup. strung since april-ish, still plays well if one string breaks or something. plays very well actually, better than my main racquet(on some occasions), but i enjoy playing with my main racquet more. its all good. i'd only restring mine if it breaks
     
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  27. coloskier

    coloskier Legend

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    ALL polys go dead in three weeks, backup or hit with. The only string that won't go dead is gut. I have some old wood rackets strung with VS gut that still have most of their tension 20 years later.
     
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  28. J011yroger

    J011yroger G.O.A.T.

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    In my experience with full poly, I let them sit for three days to get rid of the initial tension loss. After that they can sit unplayed for months and play just fine when I pull them out.

    It is worse with multis and synguts which can dry out and become brittle.

    The Full poly holds up just fine.

    J
     
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  29. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    Good feedback Jo11y - I know you catch h*** for having 19 rackets or whatever -but I assume with that many rackets or even half, you have had them sit around a while before hitting with them.

    I hear this from you and some others - then I don't quite know what to make of Coloskier's comment that all poly's go dead in three weeks, hitting or not?

    Oh Jo11y - I read your string sticky - a nice practical 'yeah I've used this stuff' approach - much less abstractly sterile. Thanks.
     
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  30. J011yroger

    J011yroger G.O.A.T.

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    Thanks for the props, I try to be unbiased and open minded (of course I can't totally put aside personal prefs.)

    As far as poly going dead, without playing, I have not experienced it, and I have strung ALU from 54-70lbs, and I suppose the longest I have left a string in a racquet without playing was over 6 months.

    I mean, it isn't like a ticking time bomb thing. It doesn't go dead in the package right? Gut, syn gut, multis dry out and become brittle, (Ever notice when you have really old syn gut that has been in a racquet for a while and it breaks like 4 different strings?) or if you left it in the sunlight string might deteriorate, but as long as it is in a dark bag and not subjected to extreme heat or cold, I think you would be golden with a poly, or even Kevlar.

    As far as colos' comments maybe he could clarify if this is something he has personal experience with, or something that he just read somewhere and was repeating.

    I suspect that it is the latter.

    J
     
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  31. J011yroger

    J011yroger G.O.A.T.

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    Oops, just re-read coloskier's post.

    It appears to me that he has tension loss and going dead confused, they are totally different things.

    Will wait for him to clarify however. The last thing I want to do is put words in someone's mouth, or make an incorrect assumption as to what they were saying.

    J
     
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  32. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    J - with tension loss, I believe that the string may loose from say, 55 down to 53 or something like that. Which of course shouldn't cause the string to be any less playable - just a slightly lower tension yes?

    Dead string from what I understand means it's lost it's ball pocketing efficiency, elasticity, etc.
     
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  33. J011yroger

    J011yroger G.O.A.T.

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    Correct.

    J
     
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  34. tennytive

    tennytive Semi-Pro

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    follow up question

    Sorry if this has been answered somewhere else.

    I bought 2 used rackets that have now been sitting for 3 to 4 months as it's still winter here in April. Both strung with poly @ 58, one full bed, one hybrid with 0 hours of play.

    Other than hitting the wall (indoors) a few times with each stick, they have sat in the bag.

    I'm not really a poly guy, but I'd like to play test these set ups without worrying about another bout of TE that I got from old poly a few years ago.

    Any suggestions as to how long I can play with these until I should cut them out?

    Appreciate any replies.
     
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  35. TennezSport

    TennezSport Hall of Fame

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    If I may..........

    We have done a ton on testing here on all kinds of string and also work with the usrsa to confirm results. Tension loss in all strings is a given as soon as the racquet comes off the machine. How much tension loss is dependent on a number of things, but in general natural gut loses approx 4-8lbs in the first 12hrs with no hitting. Syn gut can lose 8-12lbs in the same period but poly strings are much worse, and can lose 14-22lbs. However, poly loss is harder to detect with rec players because the stiffness index is so high so the string still feels tight.

    When poly strings go dead they have lost not only tension but also elasticity and resiliency. This means that the string no longer responds at impact, kinda like the difference in a good trampoline vs one made with a burlap bag; no response or energy return. Without this energy return, any shock the racquet gets is channeled up your arm culminating at the wrist, elbow or shoulder depending on the player. This is why pro players change their string so frequently (every day or every other day). Rec players dont play as often or as effeciently so poly strings will last a little longer.

    Cheers, TennezSport :cool:
     
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  36. comeback

    comeback Professional

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    Has any of this technology changed? Or is it still ok to use old poly that hasn't been hit with much?
     
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