Originally Posted by stringertom
I finally got a chance to string up a couple of frames for playtesting Signum Pro's two Blackline polys as part of a nattie gut/poly hybrid.
First, the background facts: I play Head YTPP, six months of year in FL winters @ 56/54#. When warmer weather comes, I boost tension by one pound each way per 10 degrees above 70F. I had recently strung a frame (3/23) @ 57/55 with Bow Champ. 16 gut/Tornado 17. My Beers ERT 1000 tensometer reading was 64 units with a dynamic tension of 39. Overnight, before play, the stringbed had settled to 61 units with DT of 38.
I strung a second frame subbing Hyperion 17 for the Tornado 17. I also boosted tension to 59/57, due to warmer weather and a reasonable expectation the smooth poly would not "grab" the gut a la Tornado and retain tension as well.
I also strung a third frame with another smooth poly I'm considering stocking: Tecnifibre X-Code 17. My experience with the X-Code led me to believe a little extra tension was in order so it was done @ 60/58.
The next day (4/4), my readings confirmed my hunches. In fact, over the next 3 days (approx. 6 hrs. play per frame) the stringbeds settled in to within 5% of each other. Even the older, lower-tensioned gut/Tornado had high 50's unit readings and mid-30's DT #s. The texture and the extra extrusion process makes the Tornado stabilize better and longer.
All of the above is data-oriented. Here's the non-scientific scoop: I love the Tornado's feel vs. either of the smooth polys. The extra spin on serves is visually noticeable. The ability to drop a hard-hit service return near the baseline is very common and the sweetspot responsiveness on volley exchanges at net in doubles is astounding. I enjoy all three set-ups but the Tornado is #1 and the Hyperion comes in as 2A with the X-Code a close 2B. Both the "smoothies" are a little more "mellow" on off-center hits and pocket well on touch shots.
The oddest unscientific reaction I have about the experiment is the "ping" test. Despite a slightly lower current reading on my tensometer, the Tornado bed has a slightly higher pitch when "pinged". I did a double-take on my last readings because of this. While they are within that 5% range of each other, the Tornado bed is reading the lowest (as it should from more play & more time in and lower setting), it actually sounds tighter. Odd, eh?
I will continue reporting if any express interest in the next weeks. This thread has "deadened" since I offered feedback, so if you're interested, please let me know.
Nice write up! Let me know how the Tornado lasts with the gut. Since it's an "edged" poly, you would think it would eat into the gut faster than the Hyperion or XCode. The XCode by the way, it supposed to be a poy/multi in one string, so it's not your typical choice for a cross with gut, but might work just fine. It's probably a little livelier and softer than the other two.