Stringing Machine Recommendations. ~$2000 budget.

Discussion in 'Stringing Techniques / Stringing Machines' started by moosehead, Sep 9, 2011.

  1. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida
    I am finally ready to pull the trigger on purchasing a stringing machine. It is long overdue. I have been reading a lot reviews/opinions and there appears to be a lot of choices out there which is making my decision extremely difficult. I would like to stay around $2000.

    Initially I was interested in the Prince NEOS 1500 with the Wise 2086 ($1800) but after reading about some customer service issues with the Wise, I am having second thoughts.

    Now I am leaning more towards one of the Gamma 5800 ELS's ($2099-$2299). Not sure which one. Considering the 6-point SC mount.

    What are your opinions on the NEOS 1500/Wise vs. the Gamma 5800 and is there anything else I should be considering at this price point. Also which 5800 would be the best option.

    Thanks for your suggestions.

    -matt
     
    #1
  2. marco forehand

    marco forehand Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2004
    Messages:
    203
    Good luck with this. My impression (I am NOT an expert) is that you are in a middle ground. I've had a Wise 2086 for 10 years and it's been reliable. I've had minimal need for customer service but remember them being helpful. I have not heard of any problems with the Neos.
    To my mind, that combination represents great proven value.
    Another consideration is that you have a built in backup tension head (should power be unavailable or the Wise have to be shipped back for repair).
    The Neos/Wise combination strikes me as the easier sell on the used market as well. (even many years later)
    The Gamma seems very well thought out. I have a friend who has been using a Gamma for the past 10 years without any issues with the tensioning head.
    that's my $.02 !
     
    #2
  3. ATP100

    ATP100 Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2010
    Messages:
    1,027
    Buy the Gamma, you can buy a used Neos/Ektelon anytime where you live for a back-up.

    Don't buy a Wise.
     
    #3
  4. nadalex

    nadalex Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    Messages:
    214
    I'd go with the Eagnas plus 8000
    great machine, Ive personally strung a few racquets on it during the summer when i worked at the local pro shop. Easy functions, constant Pull electronic. and very well priced at $1295
     
    #4
  5. True Gut

    True Gut New User

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2011
    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Nash-vegas
    #5
  6. Up&comer

    Up&comer Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2010
    Messages:
    2,991
    Location:
    The net
    Yeah, gammas are good. Definetely get the 6 point, I've had a few issues with the 2 point.
     
    #6
  7. Jerry Seinfeld

    Jerry Seinfeld Professional

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    1,251
    Consider a Stringway ML100 or MS200. Lower cost than others mentioned in the thread and it produces superior results.
     
    #7
  8. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida

    Thanks for the link! If it works out I will definitely send you a thank-you card. I emailed them. Waiting for a response.
     
    #8
  9. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida
    Does anyone know how the mounting system and clamps compare between the Neos 1500 and the Gamma 5800? Does one have any advantage over the other?
     
    #9
  10. marco forehand

    marco forehand Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2004
    Messages:
    203
    #10
  11. quest01

    quest01 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2006
    Messages:
    4,611
    The mounting system on the Neos 1500 is easy, its a 4 point mounting system that's simple to mount a racquet on. All you do is adjust the spacing between the mounting towers, then adjust the white contact pad height and lastly rotate the knob bolts on the outside of the towers. Also the wise 2086 does make a nice addition to the 1500.
     
    #11
  12. COPEY

    COPEY Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2008
    Messages:
    1,542
    The Dick's up the street from where I live has a TF 7000 ($7K+), and I got one of the worst restrings I ever received a while back. Producing a quality job in my opinion is heavily weighted on the stringer, not the kind of machine he/she is using.
     
    #12
  13. L10-11

    L10-11 New User

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2010
    Messages:
    13
    Gamma stringer

    I have the Gamma 6400 and the 5800 I realy like both of these stringers. What I did not like was the mounting system on the 5800 over the 6400. I removed the six point on the 6400 and installed it on the 5800. I have no idea why Gamma put that six point on a stringer that cost twice as much as the 6400, and is twice as crapy. The problem was the set up. .The 6400 can be set up in a vert short amount of time, but the 5800 because of the many different knobs took much longer, and I don't believe the raquet was held any better. I do like the electronic machine better than the mechanical lock out because I think you get a better string job over all.
    I have been a stringer for about five years.
     
    #13
  14. SpinLikeRafa

    SpinLikeRafa New User

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    Messages:
    33
    In the same boat as OP, other then the bay or CL where could i find some used stringers
     
    #14
  15. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida

    I noticed the 5800 has a SC (Self Centering) version, in the 6-point, for $100 more. Perhaps they improved the setup a bit? Not sure which one you have.
     
    #15
  16. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida

    Thanks for the link. Pennsylvania is a bit far for me. Is it common for sellers on CL to ship such a large/heavy item? Does anyone have any experience with this? I would be a little concerned for this type of item unless they had all of the original packing material.
     
    #16
  17. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida

    Agreed, I have had a few bad stringings on top of the line machines also. That being said I think I would still prefer to have an electronic stringer for ease of use and setup. Since I have never owned an electronic stringer though my assumption may be incorrect.

    How easy is it to setup the tension on the Stringway's compared to electronic. Also is there much of a speed advantage on either system?
     
    #17
  18. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida

    Do you know if the SC (Self Centering) version of the 6-point is worth the $100? On paper it looks good. Does anyone have any experience with it?
     
    #18
  19. Up&comer

    Up&comer Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2010
    Messages:
    2,991
    Location:
    The net
    It's definitely helpful. I'd say it's worth it.
     
    #19
  20. COPEY

    COPEY Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2008
    Messages:
    1,542
    Oh I hear ya - I just wanted to point out that it's not necessarily the machine that produces superior results; it's the stringer. Are the machines he suggested (ML100/MS200) good machines? Probably, but I don't have personal experience with them. The bottom line is some hapless, uncaring guy could easily produce just as crappy a job on those, too.

    As for your preference for an electronic, sure - more power to ya. When I was in the market and reading these boards religiously searching for the machine that would suite my needs, I narrowed it down to two machines and simply pulled the trigger. You can read and search and re-read and do more searching and come away as indecisive as when you first started. Everyone has an opinion about this machine or that, cp vs lo, sc vs non-sc, etc. Do enough research, ask a few questions (which you're already doing), then make the decision. With the amount of money you want to spend I'm sure you'll be happy with your choice.

    I opted for the Alpha Apex 2 with the intent to get a Wise, but decided I didn't need it. I focused on my technique, practicing, reading, watching videos (several times on occasion) until I was able to produce very consistent string jobs. With the volume of work I do (about 6 racquets per month excluding my own) the crank is plenty for me.

    Be careful, however. Once you get into it, in the period of a year/year-and-a-half you could spend more than $2k in string lol. I have more string than I'll ever be able to use, but it's fun. I enjoy trying new string and having a large inventory so others can try a variety of string as well. It can get pretty addicting. ;-)

    Anyway, good luck with your search!
     
    #20
  21. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2010
    Messages:
    5,287
    Agree.

    Lot's of newbies think electronic is better but the Stringway drop-weight with TRUE constant pull to the correct tension AT ANY ANGLE is superior in my not so humble opinion. Electronic motors wear faster than a steel weight on the end of a steel bar with steel cams in the interior of the tension device. Nothing as consistent as heavy metal and gravity. For $, this is best machine on market.
     
    #21
  22. diredesire

    diredesire Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Messages:
    6,705
    I'll echo this. Get the better mounting system. You will NOT regret it.

    A thousand times, yes. I have the 2pt mount, and I like it. I had racquets pop out of the mount at first... it was... not something I expected from such an expensive machine. The levers are also oversized compared to something like a NEOS, and they can be bumped during stringing. Not the best 2 pt mount I've used, but it's sturdy and solid. I think i'd get the SC 6pt if I had the choice.

    If you get the stand-up non-DW version, i'll agree. The DW version has its problems, but the tensioner is truly a pleasure to work with. Mounting system can be slow, and clamps can have excessive (IMO) drawback. I don't like pumping a weight, either. I have a bum shoulder.





    OP: As far as overall take on the 5800, the tensioner is waaaay too far away from the frame, and requires a butt-load of string if you want to string one ahead (especially on the last string!). Traditional 6 pt mount from gamma leaves a lot to be desired. I HATED that the self centering mount was not avaialable on the 5800 when I got mine, but it really reduces the gap between the 5800 and 8800, so I understand why. Tensioner and features are nice, string measurer is nice (but I never use it, because I always have to pull so much extra string to reach the tensioner. I even MOVED the tensioner as close as possible to the turn table so it wouldn't hit when rotated, and it's still far. 2 pt mount can be better, but it is what it is.

    Turn table brake is EXCELLENT, clamps are so-so for the price. I'd upgrade to switch action bases at the very least, but that puts you in Star5 range, IMO. If it were me, I'd either spring the extra K for the Star5, or get a used babolat, or go cheaper, for one of the ~$1K total machines. (6004 with wise, or something like that). Customer service is great to fall back on, but if you get a device that works as designed, you rarely need it. if you've been stringing 5 years, it's likely you can troubleshoot your own issues.
     
    #22
  23. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida

    If I were only stringing for myself I would probably go with either a Stringway or a LO. I have not doubts I would be perfectly happy with either. My situation however is that I plan on stringing for a lot of other people. All of which currently use electronic stringers. I am leaning towards electric for a couple of reasons: First I think I will be able to string various racquets faster with electric which is important for me as I am going to be stringing in the evenings after work and second I think it will give the other people I will be stringing for a more familiar feel with what they are use to.
     
    #23
  24. moosehead

    moosehead New User

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2011
    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Florida
    [QUOTETurn table brake is EXCELLENT, clamps are so-so for the price. I'd upgrade to switch action bases at the very least, but that puts you in Star5 range, IMO. If it were me, I'd either spring the extra K for the Star5, or get a used babolat, or go cheaper, for one of the ~$1K total machines. (6004 with wise, or something like that). Customer service is great to fall back on, but if you get a device that works as designed, you rarely need it. if you've been stringing 5 years, it's likely you can troubleshoot your own issues.[/QUOTE]


    Yeah I wish there were more choices in the $2000 range, I really don't want to go over that. I would be willing to buy a used machine to try to get into something like the Star5 but I haven't been able to find much yet.

    If I were to go with the Wise solution what do you think of the Prince Neos 1500 over the 6004?
     
    #24
  25. diredesire

    diredesire Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Messages:
    6,705
    Feel wise, you should have a very similar string bed with the SW/LF machines. I think the root of what you are getting at is the "perception" issue. While the SW machines are touted as awesome on these boards (and IMHO, they are awesome), the perception of the public is that these machines will not produce as high quality a string bed as an electric/electronic machine. I was stringing at a relatively large tournament not too long ago, and I brought in a LF MS200TT as a backup machine (for late night large pile stringing [As you can probably tell, the tournament didn't supply us with a lot to begin with]). One of the coaches stayed late finishing up a match, and expressly asked not to be strung on the "drop crank."

    The reality is that the SW will string a string bed similar if not negligibly identical to a "CP" electric machine. It's a great system. However, dropweights are equated with cheap, crappy machines.

    Tough call, I would go as far as to say flip a coin. The 2 point mount is also a thing of perception, lots of people involuntarily equate inside/"2" point mounts with lower quality. I'd personally prefer to work on the NEOS, but the quick mounting on the 6004 does not leave much to be desired. It's a great system. I haven't worked on the 1500, as there are none in my area, and I don't drop dozens of C-notes to demo machines ;). Both have switch action (as far as I can tell) clamps, both have good brakes and mounting systems. It's really a toss-up. I'd consider looking into after market support, but you probably won't need any, TBH.
     
    #25
  26. Tennusdude

    Tennusdude Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2012
    Messages:
    363
    Turn table brake is EXCELLENT, clamps are so-so for the price. I'd upgrade to switch action bases at the very least, but that puts you in Star5 range, IMO. If it were me, I'd either spring the extra K for the Star5, or get a used babolat, or go cheaper, for one of the ~$1K total machines. (6004 with wise, or something like that). Customer service is great to fall back on, but if you get a device that works as designed, you rarely need it. if you've been stringing 5 years, it's likely you can troubleshoot your own issues.[/QUOTE]

    I have owned a Star 5 and I would wait until you own one before you sing its praises. It was a big disappointment. I wont go into detail. Hopefully you will be able to buy one and find out for yourself. :)
     
    #26

Share This Page