Arm friendly setup for a 4.5/5.0 36 year old flat hitter (probably a gut hybrid, but also considering multis)

Andykay

New User
I've just bought new sticks, the lastest Prestige Pro, which I love, and now I'm trying to work out my string setup. I play big flat first strike tennis and rarely hit heavy spin. I'm in Australia and we have a lot of synthetic grass which plays fast and skidy, a little like carpet apparently, so my game works well on that surface.

I've been dabbling with a full bed of poly, since I've never done that before, but I'm starting to get some arm pain, so I'm thinking I need to steer away. In my previous sticks I was stringing with VS Touch mains and Pro Hurricane Tour crosses. They were together in a hybrid pack and I bought a whole bunch at a pretty discounted price, but I've run out of that now. My natural inclination is to go back to a gut hybrid, but it's very expensive, particularly here, if I'm not buying on sale. So that leaves me a few questions. One other thing to note, I'm not a string breaker. I can't remember the last time I broke a string.

1) What would be an ideal cross for gut that would maintain tension well? My main concerns would be keeping the cost down by not having the cross give out before the gut, and not making the bed too harsh, since I do seem to be sensitive. Secondary concern would be taming the gut a little, and lending some control. I really enjoyed the amount of control the bed of Razorcode lent me. When it wasn't hurting my arm, ball striking felt clean and precise.

2) Given I'm not a string breaker, is there any merit to considering a full bed of multi/multi hybrid? And if so, is there a slightly more control oriented multi out there, or one that fits my needs? My understanding is that multis break fast, so even though they're cheaper than gut they wind up being comparably priced because of that. But if I don't break strings often, I thought maybe it would be a viable option. I've read mixed things on multi's tension maintenance. Am I likely to get at least 15 hours out of them if they don't break?

3) Is there anything else I should be considering? Monogut zx is hard to get here, and I know very little about synthetic gut.

Thanks. I know there's probably an answer to these buried deep on the forums somewhere, but I've been sifting for hours and I just feel like I have information overload.
 

tonylg

Legend
Fellow Aussie here. I play with Klip gut (much cheaper than Bab) and usually cross it with Isospeed Cream. The gut will notch before it breaks, but still slide on the Cream which flattens out rather than notches. Both last me 15-20 hours before the Cream dies or either breaks.

Reports are that Tier One Ghostwire is similar, but it's not sold here. Apparently it is sold on Instagram, but I'm about 2 decades older than you and have no interest in anything I have to buy off a social media app.

Yonex Poly Tour Air is another good option, but I prefer Cream.
 

blai212

Hall of Fame
signum pro poly plasma is a solid option
using lower tension soft copoly is another option...Dunlop black widow, HyperG soft, mayami tour hex, signum pro xperience
 

Folsom_Stringer_Musa

Professional
VS to full bed poly will be tough on arm.
As mentioned by @tonylg, your best bet would be Klip Legend.
If that is not possible, you can try NRG2 or NXT and hybrid with poly.

1) if you want good tension maintenance out of poly try to use pre-stretched one or you ask stringer to pre-stretch during installation.
2) I would try soft smooth poly for cross first. Ghost wire is sold here but unlikely to be available in AU.
You can try the 6 pack 50% sale from there site. You can contact the sales person if they will ship to AU and for how much.
Other options for cross - Pro's pro cheap string but not good in tension maintenance, ISO Speed,

Cheers.
 

socallefty

Legend
If you are not a string breaker (unusual for someone who is 4.5/5.0 level), are you cutting out the poly after 10-15 hours when most polys go dead? If you are doing that and stringing below 50 lbs (about 23 kg), it is rare to get arm soreness with poly especially if you have good technique and play with a racquet that is not too stiff like a Prestige. So, start with cutting out your poly early and maybe you can play with fullbed poly.

I like HyperG Soft a lot and Cyclone Tour is good too.
 

Andykay

New User
Fellow Aussie here. I play with Klip gut (much cheaper than Bab) and usually cross it with Isospeed Cream. The gut will notch before it breaks, but still slide on the Cream which flattens out rather than notches. Both last me 15-20 hours before the Cream dies or either breaks.

Reports are that Tier One Ghostwire is similar, but it's not sold here. Apparently it is sold on Instagram, but I'm about 2 decades older than you and have no interest in anything I have to buy off a social media app.

Yonex Poly Tour Air is another good option, but I prefer Cream.
Ghostwire was on my radar, and it seems like you can buy it here from this site:


I did a little searching just then specifically for ghostwire vs isospeed cream, and found a thread that seemed to make it clear that Ghost Wire had better tension maintenance, while being slightly stiffer. So that might be the ticket.

VS to full bed poly will be tough on arm.
As mentioned by @tonylg, your best bet would be Klip Legend.
If that is not possible, you can try NRG2 or NXT and hybrid with poly.

1) if you want good tension maintenance out of poly try to use pre-stretched one or you ask stringer to pre-stretch during installation.
2) I would try soft smooth poly for cross first. Ghost wire is sold here but unlikely to be available in AU.
You can try the 6 pack 50% sale from there site. You can contact the sales person if they will ship to AU and for how much.
Other options for cross - Pro's pro cheap string but not good in tension maintenance, ISO Speed,

Cheers.
Klip is available here, and I think it'll be my choice, assuming I go with the gut hybrid. And like I said above, ghostwire does seem to be available.

If you are not a string breaker (unusual for someone who is 4.5/5.0 level), are you cutting out the poly after 10-15 hours when most polys go dead? If you are doing that and stringing below 50 lbs (about 23 kg), it is rare to get arm soreness with poly especially if you have good technique and play with a racquet that is not too stiff like a Prestige. So, start with cutting out your poly early and maybe you can play with fullbed poly.

I like HyperG Soft a lot and Cyclone Tour is good too.
Yeah, I think it's because I hit very flat. String breaking has just never been a thing for me.

As for the polys, I'm literally using my first beds right now. I've got about 5 hours on each racquet (different polys in each), and my session yesterday I had to cut short because I was in pain, which has never happened to me mid-hit before. Perhaps it's because I've spent years playing with gut mains, and my arm really craves that softness. Or perhaps I do have some technical deficiencies. Whatever the case, I don't want to jeopardise my health. I'm loving my tennis too much at the moment.
 

tonylg

Legend
Ghostwire was on my radar, and it seems like you can buy it here from this site:


I did a little searching just then specifically for ghostwire vs isospeed cream, and found a thread that seemed to make it clear that Ghost Wire had better tension maintenance, while being slightly stiffer. So that might be the ticket.

Klip is available here, and I think it'll be my choice, assuming I go with the gut hybrid. And like I said above, ghostwire does seem to be available.

Yeah, I think it's because I hit very flat. String breaking has just never been a thing for me.

As for the polys, I'm literally using my first beds right now. I've got about 5 hours on each racquet (different polys in each), and my session yesterday I had to cut short because I was in pain, which has never happened to me mid-hit before. Perhaps it's because I've spent years playing with gut mains, and my arm really craves that softness. Or perhaps I do have some technical deficiencies. Whatever the case, I don't want to jeopardise my health. I'm loving my tennis too much at the moment.
Will check out that source for Ghostwire as I wouldn't mind trying it.

If you hit seriously flat, what did you feel you got out the poly (besides pain)? If control, then your racquet strung up reasonably tight with gut should give you that. Otherwise a multi like Head Rip Control, but I've never really gelled with them. MSV Q10 is one I use simply because it feels a bit like gut (for 5 seconds).

Don't believe the nonesense about all good players using poly. It's a style thing. Not much point using poly if you're not getting the giggles from the free spin.
 

Andykay

New User
What tension are your polys strung at? Below 23 kg?
Yeah the set I was using yesterday that triggered my arm is Toalson Aster 1.19mm strung at 22kg (48.5lb). Not a widely available string, but my local pro shop said it's been crazy popular over the last six months here.

I'm going to try my second frame tomorrow, which is Technifibre Razorcode 1.25mm at a higher tension, 23.5 (nearly 52lb), just in case it's the specific poly that doesn't agree with me. But I don't have high hopes given it's strung tighter.
 

Andykay

New User
Will check out that source for Ghostwire as I wouldn't mind trying it.

If you hit seriously flat, what did you feel you got out the poly (besides pain)? If control, then your racquet strung up reasonably tight with gut should give you that. Otherwise a multi like Head Rip Control, but I've never really gelled with them. MSV Q10 is one I use simply because it feels a bit like gut (for 5 seconds).

Don't believe the nonesense about all good players using poly. It's a style thing. Not much point using poly if you're not getting the giggles from the free spin.
I liked the crisp sensation and the control of the poly. I played some exceptional tennis with the Razor Code, but I am improving and got new frames, so it's hard to attribute that entirely to the strings. It was really just an experiment since I'd never hit with a full bed before. I used to string my gut hybrid tight, like 26kg main/25kg cross, so I'll likely go down that path again if I pursue another hybrid, possibly taking the crosses a little lower so 26kg/24kg or something.

There's lots of multis that sound promising. A lot of people talking up Head Velocity as a slightly more control oriented multi. I may give a couple of them a shot.

My main concern with all of this is just that I feel like I struggle to identify when a string is declining. There's so many variables to why a shot I hit might sail long and I'm concerned I'm not adept enough to identify that it's because the stringbed has lost too much tension.
 

g4driver

Hall of Fame
Thanks @Papa Mango and @Andykay

Final Answer: Tecnifibre Triax 1.38mm / Yonex Poly Tour Air crosses @54M/52X for Will.

Strung three of his frames this week. Triax 1.38mm / YPTA 1.25mm is the solution that gets him 13-14 hours. You can use Tecnifibre HDMX 1.35mm or Triax 1.38/1.33 mm and Isospeed Cream 1.28mm and achieve nearly identical results, but Will likes YPTA more than Cream. (FYI: YPTA only comes in 1.25mm)
 

g4driver

Hall of Fame
The issue with Monogut ZX is getting one stringer to string your frame and do the same prestretch each time. If multiple stringers string your frame, Kelvar/ZX is off the table and is a setup that I have zero clients using. I have strung over 7000 frames in the last 5.5 years on my Ghost if that gives you an idea of my client base.
 

Frankc

Professional
Enjoy - you are very lucky to have grass courts ... very nice...

For me, another flat hitter, stay with all the well known qualities of natural gut, full bed, or a natural gut/SG hybrid (in use for decades with good players). Enjoy the qualities of gut and the "flat game" and also spend more time with your friends/family rather than always restringing. Your joints and serve will thank you - easy power for the flat/linear player...
 
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g4driver

Hall of Fame
most of the flat hitters I string for break crosses in full beds of multis. The most simple solution for these hitters to get a greater string life is to simply use a thicker multi cross. I have one 4.5 guy in this category using VS Gut 1.30 mains/ Triax 1.38 mm crosses. He breaks the 1.38mm Triax crosses before he breaks the gut. So there is another setup that gets a USTA 4.5C approval as a flat hitter.

Triax isn't a multi or a poly. It is a fusion of the two.

 

Andykay

New User
Thanks @Papa Mango and @Andykay

Final Answer: Tecnifibre Triax 1.38mm / Yonex Poly Tour Air crosses @54M/52X for Will.

Strung three of his frames this week. Triax 1.38mm / YPTA 1.25mm is the solution that gets him 13-14 hours. You can use Tecnifibre HDMX 1.35mm or Triax 1.38/1.33 mm and Isospeed Cream 1.28mm and achieve nearly identical results, but Will likes YPTA more than Cream. (FYI: YPTA only comes in 1.25mm)
Appreciate the advice. I've got one of my frames being strung with Triax/Ghost Wire right now, which was the closest combo my stringer had handy. I can get YTPA and Cream easily enough, so I'll probably try both soon. Just wanted an emergency job done to save my arm when I play tomorrow.

I'll also probably explore Klip Legend hybrid with the above polys just to see how the playabilty duration compares to the Triax.
 

crabby

New User
Try tecnifibre triax mains and isospeed cream as crosses. Triax at 23kg 20%prestretched, cream at 22kg without prestretching. Soft feeling, a lot of power, no pain for me so far...
 

g4driver

Hall of Fame
Appreciate the advice. I've got one of my frames being strung with Triax/Ghost Wire right now, which was the closest combo my stringer had handy. I can get YTPA and Cream easily enough, so I'll probably try both soon. Just wanted an emergency job done to save my arm when I play tomorrow.

I'll also probably explore Klip Legend hybrid with the above polys just to see how the playabilty duration compares to the Triax.
If Triax / GW hurts , just use a thick multi as a cross since you hit flat. Like @Frankc wrote, flat hitters don't need poly strings to get the most from their game. NG/Triax is a great option for flat hitter.

YPTA<Cream<GW in terms of softness

GW is my go to cross.. it is fairly soft with great tension maintenance.. have been using it with FW mains or HGS mains. I can hit with either VCT 1.30mm < HGS 1.25mm /GW 1.22, FW 1.25mm/ GW 1.22mm
 

Andykay

New User
If Triax / GW hurts , just use a thick multi as a cross since you hit flat. Like @Frankc wrote, flat hitters don't need poly strings to get the most from their game. NG/Triax is a great option for flat hitter.

YPTA<Cream<GW in terms of softness

GW is my go to cross.. it is fairly soft with great tension maintenance.. have been using it with FW mains or HGS mains. I can hit with either VCT 1.30mm < HGS 1.25mm /GW 1.22, FW 1.25mm/ GW 1.22mm

NG/Triax might be the dream. Would be very pricey though. If it lasted 15-20 hours it would probably be justifiable. It's basically impossible to get 1.38 Triax in Australia right now too. 1.33 is around, but 1.38 needs to be ordered from the UK/USA from what I can see.
 

tonylg

Legend
Triax would have to be a pretty freaking impressive multi. It costs 80% as much as Klip gut!

Only sets available at the TW affiliated store here .. and only 1.28.

Klip is made here, so always available in all guages.

I'll take people's word that Triax is good, but I'm not tempted. Might try a set of Ghostwire though.
 

g4driver

Hall of Fame
Triax would have to be a pretty freaking impressive multi. It costs 80% as much as Klip gut!

Only sets available at the TW affiliated store here .. and only 1.28.

Klip is made here, so always available in all guages.

I'll take people's word that Triax is good, but I'm not tempted. Might try a set of Ghostwire though.
Triax is a pretty fricking impressive multi, in the correct application. ;) For a player who breaks 1.30mm NG faster than 1.38mm, like Will Shelley, 1.38mm Triax is a better option. Will went through 1.30 mm and 1.35mm NG faster than he breaks 1.38mm Triax. $24 per strung frame for Triax 1.38mm/ YPTA crosses is a better option and cheaper than Klip NG / YPTA crosses for him. He happens to also be unbeaten at 4.5 this year. 3-0 singles and 6-0 doubles.


8 racquet lengths will do the mains of an AI 98 (27" length frame) = or 18' per main. 660' reel/ 18' per main = 18.333 sets of mains per reel. I paid $185 for the last reel of Triax which puts the mains at $5.14 per half set of Triax and YPTA is running me $5 per cross. Triax 1.38mm simply lasts Will longer than 1.30mm NG. So yes, I am giving him a small discount on the stringing. Normally $15, so he is technically paying $13.86 labor per frame. But he gives me more business than any other client.
 

LOBALOT

Hall of Fame
Ghostwire was on my radar, and it seems like you can buy it here from this site:


I did a little searching just then specifically for ghostwire vs isospeed cream, and found a thread that seemed to make it clear that Ghost Wire had better tension maintenance, while being slightly stiffer. So that might be the ticket.



Klip is available here, and I think it'll be my choice, assuming I go with the gut hybrid. And like I said above, ghostwire does seem to be available.



Yeah, I think it's because I hit very flat. String breaking has just never been a thing for me.

As for the polys, I'm literally using my first beds right now. I've got about 5 hours on each racquet (different polys in each), and my session yesterday I had to cut short because I was in pain, which has never happened to me mid-hit before. Perhaps it's because I've spent years playing with gut mains, and my arm really craves that softness. Or perhaps I do have some technical deficiencies. Whatever the case, I don't want to jeopardise my health. I'm loving my tennis too much at the moment.
I found the opposite. I found Ghostwire was less stiff, less slick, and did not hold tension as well as Isospeed Cream. You may want to buy a packet of each and compare for your self before committing to one or the other.
 

g4driver

Hall of Fame
I found the opposite. I found Ghostwire was less stiff, less slick, and did not hold tension as well as Isospeed Cream. You may want to buy a packet of each and compare for your self before committing to one or the other.

I stock, recommend and have used YPTA, Cream and GW. I string more Cream than anything, particularly in hybrids with Velocity. Cream/Velocity and Velocity/Cream is one of the most common setups for 3.5 men and 4.0 women.

GW 1.22mm last the longest in my PA+ frames with HGS and Firewire mains. FW in particular cuts into the Cream and YPTA crosses much quicker than it cuts into GW crosses. I am comparing 1.25mm YPTA vs 1.28mm Cream vs 1.27 GW...the three closest gauges. These are three strings I will continue to stock and recommend, but GW gets a lot of love from other players on this forum, same as Cream. YPTA biggest knock is it MSRP price. Cream can be purchased for $6.99 or $119 a reel at MSRP prices which is a muchh better deal than YPTA. I use the Cream reels for crosses only in 16.5' lengths for 16x18/19 patterns and use the Cream packs for mains only.
 

jdx2112

Professional
Appreciate the advice. I've got one of my frames being strung with Triax/Ghost Wire right now, which was the closest combo my stringer had handy. I can get YTPA and Cream easily enough, so I'll probably try both soon. Just wanted an emergency job done to save my arm when I play tomorrow.

I'll also probably explore Klip Legend hybrid with the above polys just to see how the playabilty duration compares to the Triax.
Technifibre Triax
Technifibre Multi-feel Black

if you’re having pain, try a full bed of either of these. Both are nylon hybrids that play more like soft polys. They also last longer.
 

tonylg

Legend
Triax is a pretty fricking impressive multi, in the correct application. ;) For a player who breaks 1.30mm NG faster than 1.38mm, like Will Shelley, 1.38mm Triax is a better option. Will went through 1.30 mm and 1.35mm NG faster than he breaks 1.38mm Triax. $24 per strung frame for Triax 1.38mm/ YPTA crosses is a better option and cheaper than Klip NG / YPTA crosses for him. He happens to also be unbeaten at 4.5 this year. 3-0 singles and 6-0 doubles.


8 racquet lengths will do the mains of an AI 98 (27" length frame) = or 18' per main. 660' reel/ 18' per main = 18.333 sets of mains per reel. I paid $185 for the last reel of Triax which puts the mains at $5.14 per half set of Triax and YPTA is running me $5 per cross. Triax 1.38mm simply lasts Will longer than 1.30mm NG. So yes, I am giving him a small discount on the stringing. Normally $15, so he is technically paying $13.86 labor per frame. But he gives me more business than any other client.
I understand exactly what you are saying, but note I said Triax is only available in sets here. Here's the total inventory of the stuff on Tennis Only:


As I said, that's 80% of the cost of Klip gut, which is readily available in 15G if you want it.

I play with 16G gut (1.3mm) and sometimes the Cream breaks first. The OP said he's a flat hitter and not a string breaker, so the Cream will die before he breaks either. My experience is that YPTA dies sooner than Cream. No idea about Ghostwire.

Not knocking the Triax setup when you're buying a thicker guage by the reel, but sets of 1.28mm for almost as much as gut (which is all we can get) don't look so attractive .. particularly for a guy who isn't going to break the gut.
 

g4driver

Hall of Fame
@tonylg

Thankfully my price for Triax per 18' set is $10.28 from a reel which is less than 1/3 of Klip Gut at $31.79 a set which makes Triax is much better value for clients who need a unique solution.

It all depends on what price you can get a string at, how quickly you break strings, or if you break them before they die. The flat hitter 4.5 guy breaks the 13.8mm Triax before he breaks the 1.30mm NG, and the NG/ Triax setup lasts longer than NG/Cream since Triax is 1.38mm vs 1.28 mm Cream. Sorry, the price of Triax is so high in Australia, as it does provide another option for players, but you've found a solution at a reasonable cost. And take solace Klip Gut isn't as expensive as Lux and Babolat and hope you get it even cheaper than we do since it is made in Australia.

If Lux and Babolat Gut prices continue to increase, I will ask clients to try Klip Gut to save money.
 

tonylg

Legend
@tonylg

Thankfully my price for Triax per 18' set is $10.28 from a reel which is less than 1/3 of Klip Gut at $31.79 a set which makes Triax is much better value for clients who need a unique solution.

It all depends on what price you can get a string at, how quickly you break strings, or if you break them before they die. The flat hitter 4.5 guy breaks the 13.8mm Triax before he breaks the 1.30mm NG, and the NG/ Triax setup lasts longer than NG/Cream since Triax is 1.38mm vs 1.28 mm Cream. Sorry, the price of Triax is so high in Australia, as it does provide another option for players, but you've found a solution at a reasonable cost. And take solace Klip Gut isn't as expensive as Lux and Babolat and hope you get it even cheaper than we do since it is made in Australia.

If Lux and Babolat Gut prices continue to increase, I will ask clients to try Klip Gut to save money.
I doubt Klip gut is actually much cheaper here, but it is very readily available.

These are the prices in AUD:

Triax $40
Klip $50
Bab VS $80

Cream is about $180 per reel.
 

Andykay

New User
I can import a reel of 1.38 triax from here:


Total with shipping winds up about $365 AUD. That's roughly the equivalent of 17 12m lengths, so $21.5 per portion, which is less than half what Klip gut costs here ($50 per 12m pack).

If I like the triax, I'll probably splurge and import a reel. That said, I'd love to know where @g4driver finds Triax on sale for $180 USD. That would be considerably cheaper, even if the shipping is outrageous.
 

g4driver

Hall of Fame
I doubt Klip gut is actually much cheaper here, but it is very readily available.

These are the prices in AUD:

Triax $40
Klip $50
Bab VS $80

Cream is about $180 per reel.
Wow.. Those prices are very steep compare to US prices and currently AUD prices converted to USD to give Americans an idea of your costs:

Triax $30.89 USD (I wouldn't buy it for half that price) Currently sells for $20.95 USD per pack
Klip $38.16 USD Currently sells for $29.99 USD per pack
Bab VS $61.78 USD (why would anyone pay this?). Currently sells for $42.95 USD per pack

Cream Reel is $119 here. My clients are getting a deal when they pay my string cost plus my flat labor rate of $15 a frame.

What would a reel of 1.35mm Velocity cost in AUD?
 

tonylg

Legend
I can import a reel of 1.38 triax from here:


Total with shipping winds up about $365 AUD. That's roughly the equivalent of 17 12m lengths, so $21.5 per portion, which is less than half what Klip gut costs here ($50 per 12m pack).

If I like the triax, I'll probably splurge and import a reel. That said, I'd love to know where @g4driver finds Triax on sale for $180 USD. That would be considerably cheaper, even if the shipping is outrageous.
At that price, it starts to make sense.

I try to shop local though. LOL .. I don't even like buying online from an AU shop if I can avoid it.
 
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