OK, here is my review in the TW format of the Mantis Comfort Synthetic 16 (mains) and Head RIP Control 16 (crosses). AKA the KCraig setup:
What can I say, Mantis is easy to string and RIP is awful. I gave it the ball bounce test and it seemed like it would have some good spin potential.
Tension it is strung: 60 pounds on a lockout machine full bed
Your regular string set up: Mantis Comfort Synthetic 60 pounds full bed
String pattern of your racquet: 16 x 20
Power (or lack there of): Low/Medium powered multi
Feel: Above Average feel
Tension maintenance: Held fine so far
Price around $9.00
Overall comments and feedback: See below
General: My first few hits I was a little concerned that I might not have enough control but once I got used to it, the setup is really nice. It had the spin of RIP combined with the touch of Mantis.
Serve/Return of Serve: My first serve was coming in fast. I was able to hit some nice 2nd serves with it due to the high spin potential. My returns were OK against a good server. When I tried to chip returns I had nice feel too.
Strokes: Great spin on both wings. Depth control was all over the place but I did not make many unforced errors. My forehand was a beast last night. I must have had 6 or 7 short cross court forehand winners which is not normal. It just felt like I could grab the ball with this setup. I could not dictate with my topspin backhand but my slice was really good.
Volleys: It's great for volleys. Feels just like a full setup of RIP. For some reason, when I volley with those RIP strings it feels like I can't miss.
Touch shots: Pretty good. Had a number of nice drop shots.
Softness: It feels pretty soft, maybe about halfway between RIP and Mantis.
Tension: Perfect for my game.
Durability: At 3-3 in the 2nd set I noticed the Mantis fibers showing. I'm surprised it lasted the next 3 games. I'll be cutting it out the next chance I get because it will break any hit or maybe in my bag.
Movement: String movement is minimal for a multi. KCraig was right that the RIP locks the Mantis into place.
Conclusion: This is a very interesting setup. If it lasted longer I'd be tempted to try it out again.
Last edited by mikeler; 01-28-2011 at 06:39 AM.