how to push a string through a hole that is blocked?

Discussion in 'Strings' started by blakesq, Jan 16, 2009.

  1. blakesq

    blakesq Professional

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    So, I finally did my first sucessful string job using my Klippermate on a Head Agassi Radical. One problem I had, was with my cross-strings. I had to push the cross string through a hole that was skipped for the mains. However, a main string went across this skipped hole, and I had a heck of a time getting the cross-string through the hole, because it was blocked by the main string. I used the awl that came with the klippermate to try to scoot the main string as much as possible to get the cross-string to go through the hole. But I kept on worrying that I was going to break the string, and would have to start all over. How do you more experience stringers get around this problem? thanks!
     
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  2. william7gr

    william7gr Professional

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    I had this problem too and had a hard time moving the string out of the way, so i would love to here some answers.
     
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  3. Ronny

    Ronny Hall of Fame

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    pathfinder awl, or just an awl
     
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  4. TokyopunK

    TokyopunK Professional

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    i usually cut the end of the string at a sharp angle and then stick it through the hole and use pliers and push it really hard and then it usually pops out the other side
     
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  5. jim e

    jim e Hall of Fame

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    One easy way is to place a scrap piece of string under the main string, that will be blocking the hole,on the outside of the frame, while you are installing that main. Then when you are ready to install the cross string, you can pull up or down on the string blocking the hole, with that scrap string, to make sliding the string through easier.
    I don't advise using the awl, as it is too easy to nick the string, and ruin it.
    Another method I have used if you do not have that scrap string in there is to use a dental floss threader, with the dental floss doubled up through the threader(it is like a large blunt plastic needle), feed that through the hole, and lift the floss up or down to open the hole a little so your cross string that has a sharp point can pass through. (it helps to have waxed floss as well to help glide the string in.)
    What usually works most of the time is to use the starting clamp, and flatten the end of the string good and flat, and cut the end on an angle, and slowly, and with small increments, use the curved pliers and slowly push it through., if this does not work then I go to the floss method I mentioned.

    Another way to prevent this is to install the 1st 2 crosses loosly, before you tie off the last mains that block the holes, as that way you can easily place the cross string in with no problems at all. You can choose to go under or over the string covering the hole which makes it easy not to overlap/cross the strings there as well,all with no struggling
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2009
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  6. Alex Y

    Alex Y New User

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    #6
  7. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    Like Jim, I wouldn't advise using an awl. I always loop a piece of scrap string over the string blocking the hole. If you've forgotten to do this, take a piece of poly, cut a point into it, and you should be able to get it through. Then, take some tubing and cut a point on one end. Put the tubing over the poly from the inside. It will be difficult to get it through, but with enough effort, you can get the tubing through by pulling it along with the poly. Then, remove the poly from the tubing and put your string through the tubing. Using a little chap stick or wax can help too.
     
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  8. william7gr

    william7gr Professional

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    #8
  9. Mansewerz

    Mansewerz Legend

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    It doesn't always work, and a lot of times it can be very frustrating.

    Most of the time it works. If it doesn't, get some poly and cut that at an angle (the stiffer the better)
     
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  10. ichibanosaru

    ichibanosaru Guest

    Get an awl, some surf wax (less than $1.00) to lubricate and there you go. :?

    Good luck!
     
    #10
  11. big hitter

    big hitter New User

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    I got the pathfinder awl from egnas for like $10 and it made my stringing a breeze.

    Gamma one cost too much and brakes quick.
     
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  12. davidahenry

    davidahenry Professional

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    I've used this method every time I've encountered a blocked hole. It works like a charm. Using this method, I've been able to get the string through the blocked hole without any problems on every occasion.

    Take care.

    DH
     
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  13. Bud

    Bud Bionic Poster

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    The pathfinder awl works better if the grommet hole is really blocked... plus, the tip isn't as 'pointy' as a regular awl. Therefore, less chance of a string 'accident' if using something like NG.
     
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  14. goober

    goober Legend

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    This works for me too. Almost never use an awl to push through a string.
     
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  15. The_Question

    The_Question Hall of Fame

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    That's what I do, pre-weave those two crosses, but not tension the strings...
     
    #15
  16. tennisdad65

    tennisdad65 Hall of Fame

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    Does flattening the string and cutting at an angle work for natural gut? The strings will separate and weaken the tip. Impossible to push through then. I have had this problem many times with natural gut. I generally resort to pushing through with the awl. Does the pathfinder awl work well for natural gut?
     
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  17. chang10is

    chang10is New User

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    This is what I do as well. It seems to be the easiest method that carries the least risk of damaging a string.
     
    #17
  18. jim e

    jim e Hall of Fame

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    I would never use an awl with nat. gut.It is too easy to damage the string.
    I have flattened nat. gut and cut at an angle, and it works as well. Some people I heard also put a little super glue on the tip to stiffen it up, but I have not had the need to try that as yet.Cutting the string at a good long angle with a single edge rasor blade once string is flattened this makes string much smaller, and with small increments, pushing with the pliers normally works, even with gut, as it may just take a couple attempts.
    This can all be avoided if planning ahead, and placing the scrap string on the outside, as you can then move the string that is blocking the hole out of the way.(and can install those 1st 2 crosses early, as stated before)
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2009
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  19. Gennady Mamzhi

    Gennady Mamzhi New User

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    Pathfinder awl

    Pathfinder awl is the best way to push natural gut or soft multifilament crosses through the blocked hole. You can not force it through and you can not angle it. I use it all the time. I slightly modified the awl to make it safer for mains. I filed the sharp tip of the awl, so it wouldn't have a chance to cut its way through the main string.

    With the harder strings you can get away with cutting it at an angle and slowly pushing them through with the pliers.
     
    #19
  20. jim e

    jim e Hall of Fame

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    It also works with softer strings also, it just takes a little more patience, as you just don't try and cram it in there. You have to gently push it in slowly, with little increments, not keeping too much space between the pliers, and the frame, and this technique does work a good % of the time as well.It also helps to cut the string at a very long bevel so the string is very narrow as well. Most of the time now, I use the scrap string technique, but if I do forget to use that, as it does happen once in a while, the flattening and pointing above does work for nat. gut a decent%. Actually I am going to purposly leave off the scrap string next time to try out Steves technique that he just listed. It seems like a good idea!I like to try different ideas out.
    I just don't like using the awl,(the regular and pathfinder) so it usually just sits in the tool tray unused, which is fine by me!
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2009
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  21. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    this is exactly what I do. I tried the other methods and this works well! using the pliers makes it easy...fingers won't work.
     
    #21
  22. Mansewerz

    Mansewerz Legend

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    I sometimes use the awl for tieoffs. I sometimes can't shove the string through to tie it off, so I have to block off part of the hole with the awl.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2009
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  23. L4RZ

    L4RZ Rookie

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    Depends on what racquet you're stringing. It's nearly impossible to string an old Estusa Pro Legend for example if you haven't got an awl.
     
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