Babolat Tonic 16+ Nat gut strung at 63# to match gamma gut 3 at 55#!?????

Discussion in 'Strings' started by shovel99, Oct 20, 2006.

  1. shovel99

    shovel99 New User

    Apr 17, 2004
    Hi guys.

    I have recently discovered gut (wonder product for me for combination of power and control... the pocketing thing, ease on arm, etc etc.) and am still experimenting with stringing tension in my Volkl V1 DNX OS.

    I first had it strung at at 55#, the tension I liked for synthetic guts, the latest being gamma gut 3, strung by a stringing pro at my club who is the most consistent stringer I have had in 50 years in the game. The power zoomed, control was OK.

    I used my string tension tester to compare the tension with tension in a similar gut racquet. It was approximately 8 # lower than the other racquet, strung by the same stringer, same machine, less than a month prior.

    I didn't believe my eyes. So I had the racuet restrung at 60#. I thought surely I would overshoot, but better to bracket down from too tight.

    It was still too powerful. (Now fully 5 pounds tighter than synthetic!.).

    I grit my teeth and throw another $35 at it..... 63 pounds... expecting it to be like a paddle.

    NOT! Played fabulously. Dropped right into the zone. Perfect compromise between power and control.

    The moral of this story is that gut needs to be strung.. in my racquet... at least 8# tighter than synthetic to match tension.

    PS I use a String O meter to measure tension. My highschool coach and professional stringer had one in 1965 and used it religiously. It measures tension by testing deflection and it works! In this case, it showed that when the natural gut was "strung at 63 pounds" by my very professional stringer, it actuall measured 55 poiunds with the sring o meter, EXACTLY THE TENSION IN THE OTHER, SYNTHETIC, RACQUET.

    I suspect the huge difference may have to do with how the string machine grips the string... and that the machine has a hard time gripping the slippery gut. I find that natural gut feels a little sticky or gooey?

    Elsewhere I have posted that discovering natural gut literally saved tennis for me... was a life changing improvement in my tennis game with both power and control.... allowing you to get "tweener" power into a more players racquet.. while keeping control. It hurts that I didn't try it earlier. Probably could have saved $3000 of the $4000 I have spent chasing the perfect racquet.

    Anyone else compare natural gut tensions with synthetic?

    Thanks, shovel
  2. Kevo

    Kevo Hall of Fame

    Feb 3, 2005
    Natural gut is a totally different type of material. It has a different stiffness response than synthetic so it doesn't surprise me that your string meter reads it lower than it's strung at.
  3. LionsNC

    LionsNC New User

    Dec 27, 2004
    I have one of those meters and they are great for checking tention loss over time after you know the relative tension. In the instruction booklet it states that it is not uncommon for the string tention to be as much as 20 lbs less in some cases then the tension you strung your racquet(40-50 has been common for me when stringing at 60). The big difference that I have noticed is that some strings especially very soft ones will lose at lot of tension when strung at lower settings e.g. silent parter's filiment frenzy seems to lose a lot of tension when strung below 62 lbs for me. One final note though is that usally natual gut holds tension better than any syn gut which is why I am a little puzzled by your post. But in any case if you are reading over 50 on your string o meter that is a very tightly strung racquet, I bet you don't get much string movment at that tension.
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2006
  4. jbs24

    jbs24 Rookie

    Mar 13, 2005
    Yes, but what would the stringmeter read on your racket strung at 55#'s? Probably somewhere around 45 lbs. I suspect you just tamed some of gut's power by stringing with higher tension.

    I don't think anyone should spend too much money on racquets and string when more $ and time should be put into proper technique and getting used to the rackets/strings you currently have.

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