With all these threads showing up about starting clamps and people being adamant about the necessity of this tool, I decided to buy the Mutual Power starting clamp. I ordered it off of the Mutual Power website and it shipped within a week. I ordered it during the holidays so the shipping time might be even faster. I paid $28.85, which includes tax and shipping/handling. My main reason for buying Mutual Power was for the price. I know people on these boards recommend GSS or Alpha or Babolat but those were a bit pricey for my taste. However, I wanted to retain some quality. After hearing about the slippage issues with Eagnas clamps, I decided to purchase Mutual Power. Some background information: I've been stringing for about 5 years. I used to use the stringer at a club until the owner found out and told me I couldn't do it anymore. It was some high-end electric, really fancy, stringer. Now, I use a Gamma X-2. It gets the job done and it was cheap. I string quite a few rackets because I also string for about 10 people. I never had someone complain about a string job because I string on a dropweight. Never had a frame warp from 2-point mounting. Now on to the actual review: Use as a bridge I almost always run short on the last main when doing poly/synth gut hybrids. I used to tie a scrap string to the original string to reach the tensioner but that only works about 75% of the time. This is the main reason for my wanting a starting clamp. The Mutual Power starting clamp performed extremely well as a bridge. It didn't slip and it held 60lbs of tension without a problem. Use to tighten knots Sometimes when I use my pliers, I accidentally cut the strings. But the starting clamp did a good job holding the strings and at the same time, not damaging it. I must say, my knots have never looked tighter and cleaner. Use to start crosses I always use a starting knot and I suspect I will continue to do so even though I have the starting clamp. When I use the starting knot, I have to double pull. Even though with the starting clamp, I went back to tension the first cross, I didn't notice a big difference in tension of that cross at the end of the string job. Those are the only times I used the starting clamp. I don't know if there are other times while stringing where a starting clamp will get in handy but I think I covered the basics. All in all, it's a useful tool to have but it's not a necessity by any means. You can get by just fine without one. If you want to get one but don't want to spend so much money, go for the Mutual Power starting clamp. I've never tried the GSS/Alpha/Babolat starting clamps, but considering the Mutual Power starting clamp did it's job wonderfully, I don't see why they cost so much more. Maybe they're more durable?? Only time will tell, I suppose.