Is my string dead ?

Discussion in 'Strings' started by frank19991999, Feb 18, 2009.

  1. frank19991999

    frank19991999 New User

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    16 g Big Ace strung at 53 lb on my Head flex radical, all of the sudden I notice a loss in power . I played with it for 20- 25 h, I am kind of medium powered hitter, moderate spin.
    Is this a symptom of a poly string going dead ?

    Thanks
     
    #1
  2. ag200boy

    ag200boy Hall of Fame

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    yes sir, your strings are DEAD
     
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  3. rxblitzrx

    rxblitzrx Rookie

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    i noticed the same thing with my prince syn gut duraflex.

    last night i started getting a lot more trampoline action and really soft feelings from my strings. it sounds dead too. more of a 'thud' sound than a 'boing' sound.

    they lasted me about 6 hours (3 days x 2 hours a day)
     
    #3
  4. frank19991999

    frank19991999 New User

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    wow ! I expected it to last a bit longer. After all is THE BIG ACE string :)
     
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  5. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    Lux. strings go dead pretty fast.

    In my experience, I lose control and not power after the strings lose tension.
     
    #5
  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Nellie..
    When you lose tension, you always GAIN power, lose control. So that's normal.
    When you add tension, you lose power, but gain control. That is normal.
    So guys, I would like to show you how dumb I really am.
    Just what is DEAD strings?
    I use a Mfil 18x20 with 15 gauge cheapo stuff at 62 lbs (when strung) and have been playing with 3 of them since Sept. 08. My serves yesterday were similar to Sept serves, my hard forehands about the same, and due to some practice, my volleys much more penetrating.
    Just what do you consider DEAD strings?
    The guy I played yesterday is a pro stringer, and insists NEW strings play a level or so better (.5 in rating). I tell him he's nuts, use my 5 months old strings, and usually overpower him to win my points. He's more consistent. His strings are less than 5 hours old, on all his rackets, to play me.
    Is he nuts? Trying to sell me strings? Am I just insensitive?
    Thanks for all replies.
     
    #6
  7. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    When I used Prince Pro Blend with string savers, after about 15 matches I'd play really bad for 2 or 3 matches. Once I switched rackets, my slump would end. So I bought my own stringer last May and have never played with a set of strings for more than 5 matches. I'd say it gave me a 0.25 increase in NTRP level playing with fresh strings.

    On a side note, I've got my first BA 16/PSGD 16 combo that I've used for 5 matches. I'm trying to figure out if I want to bust it out tonight and restring. I used to use PSGD alone and that would always break before 5 matches. The BA shows no signs of notching but the PSGD in the crosses is looking pretty ragged.
     
    #7
  8. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Thanks, Mikeler....
    But what does a new set of strings really do?
    This guys says it hits faster balls that still drop in. With my strings, if I hit a shot I think is going in, it goes in. If I hit it too high over the net, I know before it reaches the net, and give up on the point.
    So this guy says lots of opposition let his passing shots by, and they drop well in.
    OK, 5 sets now, I maybe allowed THREE total shots by, thinking they were going out. Those went in. I also allowed maybe 20 to fly by, thinking they were OUT. They were out by over 1'.
    Just seems he's promoting new strings to me, something I don't appreciate because not only did I beat him (35 years ago, he was higher than me on the BATL B team), 4 out of 5 sets, but I beat him hitting winners while his points were mostly my mistakes. Oh, and I strung over 3,000 rackets for FTCSPORTS in SanFrancisco including more than 4 pro player's sets of rackets.
    So just HOW does newer strings go about raising your level of play?
     
    #8
  9. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    I think it comes down to consistency. You are always playing with a set of strings with similar characteristics versus adjusting to the strings as they lose tension over time.
     
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  10. ODYSSEY Mk.4

    ODYSSEY Mk.4 Professional

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    after all it is still poly:)
    BA is still pretty damn good considering the price and quality
     
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  11. Midlife crisis

    Midlife crisis Hall of Fame

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    Strings are generally considered "dead" when they lose their elasticity. It happens with most materials but may be most noticeable in poly strings because of the material's strain/stiffness profile.

    What I mean by that is that poly strings tend to increase their stiffness response in an exponential fashion, and more so than other string types like gut or nylon multifilaments. So, an example would be that for a light hit that puts X force into a string, all strings may see roughly a Y increase in tension. Put 2X force into a string, and a gut string may increase the tension 2Y, but a poly string might be at 2.5Y. Put 3X times the force into a string and gut may be at 3.5Y, but poly is now at 6Y. Put 5X into a string and gut may be at 10Y but poly might be at 25Y.

    When a string goes dead, it loses elasticity by materially changing in some permanent way. This loss of elasticity can be accompanied by tension loss but that tension loss is often a precursor to loss of elasticity. In any event, when the loss of elasticity happens, the 1X --> 1Y, 2X --> 2.5Y, 3X --> 6Y, 5X --> 25Y may go to 1X --> 1.5Y, 2X --> 4Y, 3X --> 10Y, 5X --> 50Y. Subjectively, what this means is that the string response continuum has been compressed, but also that for harder hits, the stiffness ramps up much more. This reduces power and increases the forces transmitted through the frame. Also, because the response continuum has been compressed, it can get harder to hit just that exact shot. It's like if you were to drive a car and then go to another car with the same range of power, but the gas pedal travel is only one-half as long. It's harder to be as exactly precise.

    I've found that it's pretty easy for me to tell when poly strings start losing their elasticity, and that is when they start moving. I've experimented by replacing the strings before they move, as they start to move, and then some hours after they start moving, and the difference in play is basically not noticeable before they start moving ("ehh, wasted a stringjob there. . ."), starting to become noticeable when the strings start moving ("woohoo, my shots have a little more zing"), and very easily noticeable more than a couple of hours after they start moving ("my elbow thanks me!").
     
    #11
  12. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

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    with a decrease of .05834 in tension you decrease .028282 in ntrp rating.. its a scientific study by UOTD...:rolleyes:
     
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  13. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    So who is the UOTD?
     
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  14. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Thanks guys....
    I did string my rackets at 62, and being 15 gauge and 95 head, 18x20, the strings are just beginning to shift now....after 5 months.
    OK, it's not really the $$$$ keeping me from strings, it's the WHY and what fors.
    I'll string up one of them with new better lighter gauge strings and see what happens. Mostly, when I try other guy's rackets, I don't find them any better overall in any way.
    Maybe I'm just an insensitive klutz, so where's Topaz now?
     
    #14
  15. rxblitzrx

    rxblitzrx Rookie

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    If it helps, I used PSGD 17 @ 55 on my 18x20 (95 sq in) and they moved around after only 5 hours of play. I think they actually went dead too. I noticed they started moving on day 2 of play (hours 3 and 4) and then on day 3 of play (hours 5 and 6) they didn't have the same pop.... so I guess they're dead.
     
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  16. go13illy

    go13illy Rookie

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    it might just be the weather if it's getting cold again in your area
     
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  17. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    If you play most polys in hot weather, the strings will go bad in no time.
     
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  18. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    Good to know for the upcoming summer.
     
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  19. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Thanks for all the advice, tips, and replys.
    Gonna string one of my rackets with maybe BBanger around 58 or so, as I THINK it resists shifting and feels hard to the body, so not too much tension.
    Wonder if I'll feel the lessenned air resistance too, from 15 gauge 2 buck chuck strings.
    Can't imagine a string that could possibly give me or pace or spin.
     
    #19
  20. SaunderS

    SaunderS Professional

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    My strings are definatley dead. PHT usually lasts a lot of people here about 8 hours. I've had mine in for half a year. They're probably dead, but it doesn't bother me.
     
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  21. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    What's so bad about "dead" strings?
    Seems it goes in when I hit the ball "in".
    It goes long when I hit too high.
    I can serve easy 115 firsts, and I"m 60.
    I can rip backhand return of serves faster than most 3.5 incoming serves.
    So what is "dead" ??
    Besides my feel and sensitivity.
     
    #21
  22. drake

    drake Semi-Pro

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    Often, dead strings is an overused term for player inconsistency. Other overused terms are: Muted, Access to Spin and "Just Add Lead".
     
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  23. Frankauc

    Frankauc Professional

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    This week i realized for the first time what does a dead string do. I didnt care about that too much before, but now that i'm a better player, i know when there's something wrong with my racquet, cause my game is changing. Im a topspin baseline player and i usually hit with good consistency, but this week i played 3 times and i had to change my game cause i couldnt hit with spin and my ball were flying everywhere. I had no consistency at all. I had to retain my strokes and hit as low as 1 foot above the net. Of course, on serve there was no problem, but a dead string really affects the groundstrokes.
     
    #23
  24. nickarnold2000

    nickarnold2000 Hall of Fame

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    I usually play guys at the 5.0 - 5.5 level(using CP mains) and I notice after about 10-12 hours my control starts to suffer somewhat. I can still play at the 4.0-4.5 level and beat people but any higher and my margin of error(lack of control= spin) is just too small.
     
    #24
  25. TennezSport

    TennezSport Hall of Fame

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    Mostly Dead.........

    We get this question here a lot and when we try to answer it there are some people who think we are just trying to sell them new string; nothing could be further from the truth.

    Poly, Synthetic Gut(SG [Nylon]) and Natural Gut(NG are the three basic types of racquet string, and they all behave very differently in racquets once at tension. All string will lose tension as it settles and NG will lose the least and locks into a set tension until it breaks.

    Nylon string which we know as SG in monofiliment, multifiliment or combo-filiment will settle in tension and then slowly and continually lose that tension over time. As MC stated, once the elasticity is gone SG string gets mushy and this is why people say they have lost control and the balls are flying on them.

    People are under the impression that poly string is good durable long lasting string; it was never designed to be. Poly string was originally designed for clay court players who complained about string breakage during match play. Now remember that pro players string almost every day, so long term durability was never a consideration. The string was designed to provide control, spin and be durable enough to stand up to clay courts for the day. Once elasticity is lost in poly string the string will tend to feel stiffer or boardy which call also produce more shock to the arm. The tendency is to hit harder to replace the lost power, and this can lead to arm injuries.

    A number of manufacturers are now trying to create softer, longer lasting string with better tension maintenance. Kirschbaum. Prince, Tecnifibre and Weiss Cannon already have new co-poly string on the market this year that are better, but it's still a work in progress.

    Cheers, TennezSport :cool:
     
    #25
  26. ronalditop

    ronalditop Hall of Fame

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    this had hapenned to me just few days ago. im using poly for the first time( i had only use psgd before) and the first days it felt great. but days later i started to feel the racquet very stiff and without enough power, and because of that im experiencing now elbow and wrist pain.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2009
    #26
  27. dataseviltwin

    dataseviltwin Rookie

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    I use a hybrid (kevlar mains, nylon cross) - just before breaking, they feel "spongy," hence "DEAD" feeling. Suspect other strings exhibit the same feel as they're going...
     
    #27
  28. Tennis Dunce

    Tennis Dunce Semi-Pro

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    Tennez, would a Kevlar 18g last about as long, not as long, or about the same as a 16g poly or SG? I know Kevlar is really stiff and that 18g strings aren't very durable, but would Kevlar 18g break relatively easily? I've never tried any Kevlar, or any string at 18g before, and am thinking about 17g for mains and 18g for crosses...full Kevlar.

    Does Kevlar lose its tension or does it settle like NG?
     
    #28
  29. meowmix

    meowmix Hall of Fame

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    IMO, it's all mental. If you THINK your strings are dead after 5 hours... guess what... they're dead. If you think they'll be lively, they will be lively. Since tennis is such a mental game, that's usually what it comes down to.
     
    #29
  30. ReopeningWed

    ReopeningWed Semi-Pro

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    Dead strings just mean that you're having a bad day. ;-)
    My strings go dead when they BREAK.
     
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  31. AJK1

    AJK1 Hall of Fame

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    I totally agree, it's also a phenomenon that's talked about quite extensively in a book called "Technical Tennis"
     
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  32. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    When I play bad it is always due to the strings. There is no way I can possibly lose to anybody :)
     
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